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Not to be argumentative, but, what makes you think the NHTSA is going to see this, let alone act on it? And, what makes this failure different from any other failure ( ie: ABS pump, trunk latch, various seal failures, clutch etc. ) to warrant a recall other than not wanting to pay for the repair yourself? :confused:
 

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I really don't give a rat's @$$ if NHTSA sees is or not.
Like I said, saw this on another site. Just say'n...
 

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joevano said:
Not to be argumentative, but, what makes you think the NHTSA is going to see this, let alone act on it? And, what makes this failure different from any other failure ( ie: ABS pump, trunk latch, various seal failures, clutch etc. ) to warrant a recall other than not wanting to pay for the repair yourself? :confused:
Sounds argumentative to me but I'll respond anyway. NHTSA has received many reports of this problem which many of us believe occurs in numbers far beyond what should be acceptable and has been obvious for eight years now. The reports to NHTSA are not clustered in a single location so after much discussion on the LDRider list Jim Puckett decided to try to centralize the reporting and has been in contact with NHTSA so that they can see the numbers in one location. What makes this failure different, IMHO, is magnitude, duration and safety factors involved. I paid for my failure outside of warranty and did not seek BMWNA reimbursement but will think long and hard about buying another BMW unless they step up and find a remedy to the problem that we, the folks on this list, have discussed with them directly on several occassions over the past several years.

YMMV
 

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I knew that would be taken wrong! I'm just trying to understand the logic behind the push for recall on this particular issue. Even if the guestimated failure rate is correct, is 4% enough for them to take action?
 

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joevano said:
I knew that would be taken wrong! I'm just trying to understand the logic behind the push for recall on this particular issue. Even if the guestimated failure rate is correct, is 4% enough for them to take action?
In automotive terms, a 4% failure rate is astronomical. Recalls have been initiated over far fewer complaints, especially when there is a safety factor involved. And that's the crux of the issue here. Being stranded from a clutch failure due to a leaky seal or being unable to open your trunk is annoying, but hardly deadly. But having a rear wheel lock up at speed, or suddenly finding the rear brakes and tire covered with gear oil is unacceptably dangerous.

Remember, NHTSA stands for National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. They aren't concerned with engineering annoyances, but rather they're concerned with sudden failures that can lead to a serious risk of death or injury. Think along the lines of a total ABS failure, or a leaky fuel tank above an exhaust system, or a sudden tire failure due to internal damage.

And yes, I know that this site has been all over the final drive issues for many years. We've spoken to NHTSA, and to BMW, and to anyone who would listen. But even the existing NHTSA reports are spread over a bunch of different bikes and categories so there's no clear picture of the magnitude of the problem.

Jim Puckett (the website owner) is a well known and respected rider who has taken all the ranting about BMW quality on the LDRider list and is trying to turn it into something positive. The main difference here is that Jim is trying to collect data from all BMW final drive failures on all models and years, and collate that into a single useful database than can be presented to his NHTSA contact directly.

Now I can't say that he'll have any better luck than we have, but if he's willing to put the time and effort into this project then I figure supporting him by adding data of known failures is the least we can do. All three of my final drive failures are in his database already.
 

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Thanks Praxis! I learned more from the NHTSA website:

What Is a safety-related defect?

The United States Code for Motor Vehicle Safety (Title 49, Chapter 301) defines motor vehicle safety as “the performance of a motor vehicle or motor vehicle equipment in a way that protects the public against unreasonable risk of accidents occurring because of the design, construction, or performance of a motor vehicle, and against unreasonable risk of death or injury in an accident, and includes nonoperational safety of a motor vehicle.” A defect includes “any defect in performance, construction, a component, or material of a motor vehicle or motor vehicle equipment.” Generally, a safety defect is defined as a problem that exists in a motor vehicle or item of motor vehicle equipment that:

* poses an risk to motor vehicle safety, and
* may exist in a group of vehicles of the same design or manufacture, or items of equipment of the same type and manufacture.

Examples of defects considered safety-related

* Steering components that break suddenly causing partial or complete loss of vehicle control.
* Problems with fuel system components, particularly in their susceptibility to crash damage, that result in leakage of fuel and possibly cause vehicle fires.
* Accelerator controls that may break or stick.
* Wheels that crack or break, resulting in loss of vehicle control.
* Engine cooling fan blades that break unexpectedly causing injury to persons working on a vehicle.
* Windshield wiper assemblies that fail to operate properly.
* Seats and/or seat backs that fail unexpectedly during normal use.
* Critical vehicle components that break, fall apart, or separate from the vehicle, causing potential loss of vehicle control or injury to persons inside or outside the vehicle.
* Wiring system problems that result in a fire or loss of lighting.
* Car ramps or jacks that may collapse and cause injury to someone working on a vehicle.
* Air bags that deploy under conditions for which they are not intended to deploy.
* Child safety seats that contain defective safety belts, buckles, or components that create a risk of injury, not only in a vehicle crash but also in non-operational safety of a motor vehicle.

How many reports must be filed before NHTSA investigates an issue?

There is no established number. Agency technical experts review each and every call, letter, and online report of an alleged safety problem filed with NHTSA. Although NHTSA has no jurisdiction over defects that are not safety-related, it does review each report that suggests a potential safety defect involving groups of motor vehicles or vehicle equipment.

I just wanted to understand, not get flamed! :)
 

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meese said:
Jim Puckett (the website owner) is a well known and respected rider who has taken all the ranting about BMW quality on the LDRider list and is trying to turn it into something positive. The main difference here is that Jim is trying to collect data from all BMW final drive failures on all models and years, and collate that into a single useful database than can be presented to his NHTSA contact directly.
You might suggest to Jim that he also track the mileage when the failure occurs - just to get a more complete picture.
 

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joevano said:
I just wanted to understand, not get flamed! :)
No problem, and kudos fro doing your own research. :)

Remember, the NHTSA is only going to get involved if there is an imminent risk of sudden failure that could lead to a death or serious injury. Their focused is public safety, not quality control or consumer satisfaction.

I just hope that we can get solid action on this issue before someone is seriously injured from a final drive failure.
 

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Can't but agree there Ken - good move!

Which just makes these kinds of childish entries all the more maddening. I can only hope the twit that did this isn't someone here.

18 This Sucks SAC CA 95467 12316546546465 2007 BMW 1/1/92 Sweet primitive database.. It would be real useful if the fields were actually validated and MILEAGE was actually one of the variables collected! Love the misspelling all over the place too, "Faiure Date" DUH!
 

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Randy said:
You might suggest to Jim that he also track the mileage when the failure occurs - just to get a more complete picture.
Done. I know you had a lot of contact on this issue in the past, Randy. Mind if I hook you two up in case he has any questions?
 

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Zotter said:
Can't but agree there Ken - good move!

Which just makes these kinds of childish entries all the more maddening. I can only hope the twit that did this isn't someone here.
Already noted. It'll be pulled soon enough.
 

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Uzirider said:
From another site:

There's a web site now where you can register your BMW final drive failure in hopes of attracting enough interest from the NHTSA to get a recall going:

http://bmwfinaldrive.com/fd_failure_list.php
Thank you for providing the link; I saved it to my favorites as I knocked on the wooden desk top!

Regards,
Curt
 

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Ken,

Do me a favor and don't park your scoot anywhere near mine at CCR. :cool: I don't want her to learn this trick that yours obviously has down pat. I see your name on that list three times!!! :eek: Would that make you a 4 to the 3rd power %er? :D
 

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Ken, is anyone trying to get the spreadsheet Jeff had to Jim? It probably would be pretty easy to port the information into the new database. I would like to put my old failure in, but if it can be put in from Jeff's data they will get a good number of them in one fell swoop. Besides, I would have to look up paperwork to know the date of my drive failure.
 

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meese said:
Mind if I hook you two up in case he has any questions?
Of course I do not mind. I'll send you the best contact info by PM.
 

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hmmmm90s said:
pass, thanx.

There is no indication as to who even owns this website.
I set it up after noting that:

1) after 10 years of significant numbers of FD failures, BMW still has not gotten it right (e.g. all new design is failing in significant numbers too)

2) the biggest problem with reporting FD failures to the NHTSA is no consistent (standardized) way to file these failures so that all BMW FD failures show up in the same "group".

The 5th level NHTSA classification is Component. Listed below are the choices I encountered this morning for a 1999 BMW K1200LT:

1. Power Train
2. Power Train:Axle Assembly
3. Power Train:Axle Assembly:Axle Shaft
4. Power Train:Axle Hub
5. Power Train:Drive Line
6. Power Train:Drive Line:Differential Unit
7. Power Train:Drive Line:Drive Shaft
8. Power Train:Drive Line:Universal Joint

When I explored a 2002 BMW K1200LT, the 5th level component choices were:

1. Power Train:Drive Line
2. Power Train:Drive Line:Center Bearing Support
3. Power Train:Drive Line:Differential Unit
4. Power Train:Manual Transmission
5. Power Train:Manual Transmission:Floor Shift Assembly

Hell, there are even incidences of FD failures filed under brakes because the final drive leaked oil onto the brake pads

Since the FD failures cross BMW motorcycle models, model years, and now, even fundamentally different FD designs, there is no way NHTSA has a clue about the magnitude of this potentially fatal defect!

On 2/18/08, Karl Best <[email protected]> wrote:
Has anyone contacted the NHTSA to suggest that there's a problem with
their classification categories? Feedback may help.

I have written a formal complaint to the Office of Defects Investigation (ODI) after receiving a reply to my email sent 6 days ago and talking to them over the telephone yesterday. I have also set up a free MySQL database on www.bmwfinaldrive.com. This database is similar to Jeff Eagan's survey on www.bmwlt.com. There are 172 failure entries in the BMW LT survey, but only 48% have reported their failure to the NHTSA ODI.

Getting all of the data to the NHTSA in such a manner that they classify it as the same fundamental defect and recognize the potential to cause a serious accident is probably the only way short of a documented fatality to make BMW own up to this problem.

Jim Puckett
2002 R1150RT - 110,000 miles (FD rigorously maintained, PM replacement of bearing, seals and oring @ 96,000)
198 Cedar Meadows Dr
Jackson, MO 63755
573-833-6690
 

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Jim

I've learned a lot about this issue today. Since I just bought my '02 last week, at this point I'm a 96 percenter. I appreciate all the work you have put into this, and for all of us, THANKS!!
 
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