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I did my first road trip this weekend ... about 800 miles ... big loop ... included lots of wind ... a drizzle and twice we got turned around due to road closures due to snow ...

All in all the bike handled very nicely ... bit touchy in the wind ... but otherwise very comfy ...

I did have one issue ... I kept turning the key too far (turning on the camping lights) when I got to the hotel ... I've never done that on any of my trips around town, but for some reason I did it way too often on the trip ... good thing the room had a view of the bike ... three times I had to go back down and turn off the camping lights ... short of just not going that far with the key, is there anyway to disable this key function ... I like the lights when I turn off the ignition for the 30 sec's or so ... but I'm afraid I'll leave the camping lights on and get stranded due to a dead battery. After doing it a few times, I've gotten in the habit of checking the lights before I leave the bike so maybe nothing is needed.

Any hints about wind riding ... it felt as if the bike was sliding out from under me either to the right of left depending on the wind direction ... it was a 40-50 mph gusting wind ... all I could figure was to slow down and ride it out ... maybe it's just me being over cautious since it was my first long trip ... Things that I think could of affected it ... windscreen height, air wing position, seat height ... guessing here ... I had the windscreen set to where I look just over ... actually peeking over it ... the air wings were set to keep wind off me ... the seat was in the higher position ... any thoughts?

Thanks for any help ... it was a great trip ... good fellowship .. and a great ride ... my harley riding buddies did kinda make fun of me for slowing down in the wind ... but not too bad
 

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Its wise to slow down whenever you don't feel safe. Don't let your buddies get to you.
 

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tips727 said:
Its wise to slow down whenever you don't feel safe. Don't let your buddies get to you.
+1

Besides, they may pass you in the wind, but you will pass them as they stop every 150 or so for fuel... Plus, when the wind dies down, you will lose them in the twists...
 

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2011 R1200RT
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What I found to help in strong side winds is rolling the throttle on and off a little and progressively. Not sure why it works... but it does.
Head or back winds don't matter much.
 

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Wrencher Extraordinaire
2005 K1200LT
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Looser grip on the bars to reduce body/wind induced inputs and tighter grip with the knees.
 

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FuzzyWuzHe said:
Any hints about wind riding ... it felt as if the bike was sliding out from under me either to the right of left depending on the wind direction ... it was a 40-50 mph gusting wind ... all I could figure was to slow down and ride it out ... maybe it's just me being over cautious since it was my first long trip ... Things that I think could of affected it ... windscreen height, air wing position, seat height ... guessing here ... I had the windscreen set to where I look just over ... actually peeking over it ... the air wings were set to keep wind off me ... the seat was in the higher position ... any thoughts
On a long trip I did last year I spent time playing with the effect of the winglets in very heavy cross winds, and found that adjusting one side only, ie, 1 wing open, 1 wing closed ( I think the side opposite the wind closed to be flat with the fairing) to allow the wind to push through along the side of the bike with less resistance seemed to help stabilize the air-flow around the bike.
Also the bike has a tendency to self-stabilise somewhat anyway, if it "slides" sideways I usually find it rights itself pretty quickly.
 

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FuzzyWuzHe said:
I did have one issue ... I kept turning the key too far (turning on the camping lights) when I got to the hotel ...
Use a SILVER paint pen, and put a DOT at the correct spot for key removal. This is a quick reference, no thinking mark. I did it with my locks on my cases also.

FuzzyWuzHe said:
Any hints about wind riding ...
(+1) Loosen shoulders, clamp knees...
Check out this post.... http://www.bmwlt.com/forums/showthread.php?t=67737

I haven't heard of anyone being knocked over in crosswinds, but I sure have felt like it was possible! Definite suction marks on the seat after one of those rides.... :eek:
 

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I say do nothing about the key.
Sooner or later it will grow on you. Your approach right now to check the lights before you leave the bike is fool proof. Once familiar you will be able to laugh at it in your thoughts. Anytime I used my fob when the bike was new I still manually checked all compartments to make sure they were secure . . . piece of mind. On my Goldwing I never used my trunk light for fear of leaving it on. All we search for is a relaxed mind and enjoy the ride.
ride safe :bmw:
 

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I don't think slowing down for wind helps. In fact, I think it makes it worse. BMW's were the first bike to be designed in a wind tunnel. And they have an aerodynamic factor to them. Which means they will cut thru' the wind.
Like a glider. Or an airplane.
You have to ride the wind.
Ride the bike on a lean. Don't ride in a straight line. Stay relaxed, but keep your concentration up.
We have some areas here of severe wind. However, on my recent trip thru' Baja California to Cabo San Lucas I encountered winds more severe than I have ever seen here. It's only dangerous if you don't concentrate on staying on the road.
Much of it is getting used to it.
But think of the airplane. When the plane flies at 150 mph, a 150 mph wind passes over it, to no effect. There is always other wind involved as well.
But if the plane sits still on the ground, a 100 mph wind could easily flop it upside down.
dc
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks for the replies ...

I will play with all the variables in the wind ... On the last leg I did find I was trying to ride the wind more (wanted to get home ... LOL) ... never thought about adjusting the wings separately ... interesting idea ... some logic there me thinks

On my ignition switch there are no marks, so I kinda like the silver mark idea ... by the time the mark wears off I should be trained

As a final point about the trip ... I found only a slight drop in mpg from calm and windy ... so maybe the bike was trying to ride the wind and I was fighting it ... I also realized early that tight grip pressure .. no matter how much I wanted to was definitely making it worse ... didn't think about tighter knee pressure though ... so that too will get a try

Thanks again ... this forum is the best


As a side note ... one of our riders was on a 1987 R80 ... what a kewl little bike ... it quit running twice ... but when we finally started looking at why .... instead of just pushing it and restarting it we noticed that there where 3 cracks in the coil ... the spark plug wires where all cracked and one of the spark plug boots was not even there (he just purchase this bike the day before the ride) amazing how well the bike did with all those problems ... BMW ... truly the ultimate driving machine ... heehehe
 

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Camping light - I assume you are talking about the Parking Light . . .

Had the same issue and drained my battery - simple solution pulled the bulb and placed
the bulb holder back in the headlight housing - no more drained battery issues!! :D
 

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Sorry I mis-understood.
I thought the markings were on the ignition and you were going to far to the left. Well let me try and make up for that. There are 4 markings on the key /ignition circle.
ON ------- is at 12 o'clock everything lights up.
R* --------- 11 o'clock turns off ignition and lights ( where you really want to stop)
steering is not locked.
OFF* ------ 8 o'clock everything is off and handlebars locked.
P ---------- 7 o'clock park lights ( or as you put it camp lights on) and steering again
locked.
So how about a ghetto mod. A plastic ring like those spacers you get in a pack of CD/DVD's with the 4 marks and see if it fits around the key insert. I have not tried but anyone with more knowledge would this work.
ride safe :bmw:
 

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dfinazzo said:
Camping light - I assume you are talking about the Parking Light . . .

Had the same issue and drained my battery - simple solution pulled the bulb and placed
the bulb holder back in the headlight housing - no more drained battery issues!! :D
Replace it with an LED... Almost ZERO battery drain, but lets you know the switch is in the wrong long term position. John, and ideas on what else is powered in this key position?
 
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