Monday, November 8, 2010

And Then There Were Five… Hello BMW!


This past Wednesday, I rode a 2001 BMW R1150GS. I wasn’t seriously looking for another bike, but I kept a search open on craigslist just for fun. I had seen this bike listed a few times over the last few weeks. When the price came under $4,000, it became interesting.

Bmw r1150gs First ride of a 2001 bmw r1150gs

The posting described the bike as well used, but well maintained. It had recently been inspected and all the fluids changed, but it needed some TLC. Did I mention it also had 104,000 miles? Well, that is what was on the odometer. The speedo cable was broken, so it might actually have a couple more miles than that.


The Bad: right rear turn signal not working, left front turn signal missing, two small holes in rear seat, bald rear tire, broken speedo cable, mismatched non-functional extra driving light on the right side, sounds like it needs a valve adjustment, right sidecase is slightly damaged (I think I can fix it), and too many stickers!

Bmw goofy light

The Good: The engine seems to run well, the charging system was inspected, all fluids changed (clutch, oil, brakes), good front tire, good brakes, ABS works?, right side driving light works, no apparent major damage, upgraded foot pegs, upgraded handlebars, upgraded seat, comes with luggage ie: tank bag, top case, bmw side cases (covered in stickers), extra tools in on case, bike cover in another case, powered gps ram mount (no idea which GPS), upgraded horn, heated grips, battery tender cable, and heated gear cable.

Nice footpegs Other driving light

After the test ride, I called the owner and we talked. The bike wasn’t stored at the owner’s house, but at a friends. There was a divorce and she was selling her ex’s bike. We finally agreed on a price, and I met her the next afternoon to complete the title transfer.

She drives an art car:

Art car

I picked up the bike on Friday night and stayed up until 1am fixing problems with the bike.

I replaced the bulb in the rear turn signal.

replacing turn signal bulb on bmw r1150gs Replacing a Turn Signal on BMW R1150GS

I made an old stock turn signal from the SV650 work on the BMW. The dremel really helped. It mostly matches.

Replacing a Turn Signal on BMW R1150GS Replacing a Turn Signal on BMW R1150GS 

I removed the GPS mount as it was in my way, and I don’t have that GPS (nor do I know which one the mount is for)

removing gps mount

Fixed some cable routing.

Replaced the broken speedometer cable.

Raplacing Speedometer Cable on BMW R1150GS Raplacing Speedometer Cable on BMW R1150GS

Started removing stickers, but still have a ton to go. I need to get the hair dryer out!

Saturday morning I had a new tire installed, and took it out for a ride. It’s fun in the sand! >:)

Now I need to get the site updated with the new bike!


  1. Congratulations. Five. Who knows maybe someday I'll have two....but, I'm not jealous.

  2. Some people have kids. Chris has bikes. Congratulations on extending your family!

  3. Keith: Thanks! I saved for the entire last year to buy the bmw. I just didn't know thats what I was saving for. It is easy to get two. hop on craigslist and get a bike for $200 :) They are cheap this time of year. hehe

    Gary: LOL. Thanks Gary. It should be much better for two-up riding than the SV.

  4. Congratulations Chris, I'll have to go see this new collection of yours soon!

  5. Chris: congrats on your new addition. With your mechanical magic I know that soon it will be in pristine condition. It already looks good. for some reason BMW's are overpriced up here but I have been tempted with an "R" bike too

    Wet Coast Scootin

  6. That looks like a Garmin 60csx mount.

  7. Congrats Chris! It'll make a great tug if your Ural tug ever gives up the ghost....I am seriously considering putting the R80 in the Ural tug's place if it breaks again.


    Redleg's Rides

    Colorado Motorcycle Travel Examiner

  8. Dear Chris:

    I love the riding lights and the mounts on that rig. I found myself thinking, could I squeeze two more onto mine?

    Fondest regards,
    Jack • reep • Toad
    Twisted Roads

  9. Congrats!

    And welcome to the family! Love love the pics of the bike!

  10. UnquenchableOne: Thanks! Yes! It's been too long.

    Bob: I've got it mostly sorted now after that first long night. Hopefully will get the rest sorted out today. Yay Holiday!

    HBurgNinja: I was very hopeful when you suggested 60csx since I want one, but it turns out its for a Zumo 550.

    Dom: The R1150GS does make a good tug. I've seen a number of nice rigs with them. Wouldn't you miss your 2WD using the BMW instead of the Ural? The 2WD is the main draw for the Ural for me.

    Dear Jack: Thanks! You could always squeeze more lights. HIDs are small, so you could get four more for sure! I'm thinking of adding a pair of HIDs up top and a pair of the LED lights on the bottom to complete the "light triangle"

    Sharon: Thanks! Maybe we'll see you at the BMW rally for 2011!

  11. Chris

    you said: Dom: The R1150GS does make a good tug. I've seen a number of nice rigs with them. Wouldn't you miss your 2WD using the BMW instead of the Ural? The 2WD is the main draw for the Ural for me.

    Yes I would but these days, reliability lays heavily on my mind...

  12. Dom: I understand being preoccupied with reliability. That was me nearly every day last winter. Not a fun time riding if you're not confident you'll make it home. *fingers crossed* that you're Ural behaves.

  13. your Ural even... sheesh I can't type today.