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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
One unhappy thought has occurred, which is that the monetary value of our bikes will have depreciated greatly in recent weeks, and now would probably not be a good time to sell.

Thanks to the financial crisis created by the corona virus, here in Oz house prices have slumped, new car sales are down by 20% or more, and new motorcycle sales – already in free-fall – have probably plummeted by much more. In the biggest hit of all there are massive layoffs across many job sectors, and growing unemployment especially among younger Aussies. No doubt this is being paralleled – or worse – in many other corona-affected countries. Luckily, the 25 million Australian population has been lightly treated by the virus, with 3578 cases and only 14 deaths thus far.

Of course, if one does not need to sell their bike in the near future, or is lucky enough to be buffered against these impacts, there’s possibly little to be concerned about as regards the value of the machine. Personally, my greatest motorcycle-related concern right now is that if the mooted total shut-down and mandatory self-isolation comes into play, there will be no opportunities to ride for maybe months, and with the best riding conditions of the year coming up that would be a mortal blow!

Whatever – best wishes to everybody out there.
 

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The car industry has been in the doldrums well before the outbreak of COVID19, so it's going to be interesting to see which brands survive and which ones choose to pull out of Oz completely. Brands like Skoda, Alfa, Peugeot maybe even Renault in my opinion could pull the plug, there are a number of Chinese brands too that might reconsider as well. Interesting times ahead indeed.
 

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Discussion Starter #4

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Probably a good time to buy. Dealers with stock on the floor, OEMs desperate to move tin.
Here in Scotland all dealers are closed.

Most have a number to call, so that essential workers can get their vehicles serviced and repaired – that’s it.

As for the price of new bikes? Well who knows. I’ve got a brand new R1250R sitting in my garage – delivered just two weeks ago – it’s yet to turn a wheel. The roads are deserted - no non essential travel allowed. I’ll be able to ride it to and from work – though I’m only working every other week. But as for it’s current and future value – who cares, it’s the least of my worries.
 

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I've been riding the TW when I can to do essential stuff (grab files from the office, get snacks, etc.). The R isn't registered and the rego office is closed for the foreseeable future, so that will have to stay at the inlaws for the time being. I have been tempted to get a cruiser whilst I can drive a hard bargain, but I don't think Lauren would approve. I did buy a battery powered lawnmower which is pretty cool (Victa 82v 18").

I'm working from home, which I've done before, so I have everything I need to be comfortable. Lauren is also working from home for the next few weeks and is less prepared, but we have set up a desk and stuff in a spare room so she can maintain client confidentiality.

All in all it hasn't caused us too much trouble.
 

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My RS is at the shop. Businesses can be open, and I think a bike shop should be working...especially if paid for the work in advance. Last I checked, they’re waiting for a part to come back from the paint shop, but until it’s home, I can’t do anything to finish my tinkering and I’ve nothing but time now to do it. :cry:
 

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I have rewired, re-plumbed and painted my house so far. Thinking about moving my foundation and I'll probably do an addition to the upper level this afternoon.

Just kidding.

I have done all those niggling little chores however, the ones you plan on but never do - like that.

We have no restrictions on road use, so I will probably go for a loop this week. No infection given or taken on the bike and frankly... I've been good and inside from the start of this, two weeks so far.

Mental health is important too.

Having too much time and access to the interweb and no adult supervision, I've been indulging in another passion - watches.

Found a really nice new thing from Seiko, the King Turtle. Ceramic bezel and sapphire crystal. I bought it from Seiya Japan, so it's the JDM version and I expect it to be here this week. For a bracelet, I'm going to get a Strapcode Super Engineer II. Can't beat their quality or price.
watch

Bracelet
 

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If you want some non-COVID screen time, check out Ryan from FortNine's channel on Youtube. Very entertaining, honest and very well produced - all sorts of interesting topics for us two-wheelers.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Can we see it here?
 

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Have to agree with you on this review.
Hope you posted a rebuttal.

I took the easy way out and gave him a thumbs down as there were way too many things to object to.
saying the Vstrom 1050 is an equivalent bike is like the clowns that said the nearly launched at the time FJ09 was great alternative to the Ducati Multistrada 1200.

I found his review of the Shiftcam GS shallow and pompous
 

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My main takeaway from the video is the point Ryan makes about what is, in essence, variable valve timing technology used in the 1250 engine. it gives useful insight into the challenges faced by manufacturers and that the BMW solution is really just a better compromise (than non-shift cam) at best.

The shift-cam technology makes it an 'either/or' option for the cam profile actually in use as rpms rise. In a perfect world, the camshaft profile (and ergo valve action in relation to piston position), would be infinitely adjustable with regards to the main three factors in a camshaft, being timing, duration (period) and lift.

I think Ryan's valid point was that variable valve timing has been around for some time in other bikes (he mentions Suzuki and Honda VFR800s) and, well heck, even my wife's 13 year old Corolla has VVT too. So while adoption of shift cam technology into the ever-faithful boxer engines has to be a good thing, I understand his point is that it is not exactly 'leading-edge' technology.

Here's an article on some interesting development work being done in Britain on electro-mechanically actuated valves and the alleged benefits they bring.

And this from Koenigsegg describing their cam-less engine and a great discussion from inside Koenigsegg on the potential benefits for even non-supercar engines.

Trust you find it an interesting glimpse into one future option for ICE.
 

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Ryan's headline is that Shift Cam is bad for the GS, and he bases that principally on the fact that there are computer controlled electrical components under the valve cover – 'what if it fails'. You could say that about any of the high tech on a modern bike, adventure tourer or otherwise, but rather than ask a BMW engineer, he simply says it's bad. I'd be extremely surprised if a 1250 doesn't remain rideable if a solenoid fails, and I'd be 150% certain no damage would be done to the engine if one did.

As has been noted, VVT has been around for a long time. There are pretty much no new ideas in the world – come up with an idea and someone has already thought of it. So, borrow an idea if necessary and implement it effectively. Whether it was their idea or not, BMW has put an effective system into mass production. Ryan could just as easily criticise Ducati for their trademark desmodromic system – the idea goes back to the 19th century, but Ducati is the marque that has implemented it effectively across their range. Does Ryan say desmo systems are bad for Multistradas, for example? And did the system patented by Suzuki in 1991 ever go into production? If so, it must have been a fly-by-nighter – I don't recall it, and Mr Google didn't help restore my memory. Ryan applauds the simplicity of Suzuki's VVT system, but by being simple, it has its own compromises (see below).

In his chalkboard explanation of the combustion cycle (which is actually wrong in the low speed explanation – any ICE engine with some sort of performance will have valve overlap) he fails to mention the additional rideability at lower rpm due to the Shift Cam low-speed cam profiles. In addition to being lower lift than the high speed inlet cams, there is also 'a phased differential opening between the left and right-hand inlet valves in each cylinder, in terms of both stroke and angular position. This phased shift means that the two inlet valves are opened a differential amount in terms of lift – so, one more than the other – and on a time-staggered basis. This helps create additional swirl for the incoming charge of air and fuel, and thus greater agitation of the mixture as it flows into the combustion chamber. This results in both improved combustion, as well as a more complete burning of the fuel, thus ensuring reduced emissions and a claimed up to four percent lower fuel consumption.' (Paragraph stolen from Alan Cathcart's write-up.) I don't recall seeing that feature in any other motorcycle.

While the rest of us get by fine with a single duration and lift cam profile (even VVT systems such as Suzuki's) these low-speed cam profiles and their timing would be unsuitable for high speed use, so (obviously) the Shift Cam high-speed cam addresses this band, thus providing the engine with a good spread of power across both bands, and very smooth, tractable power at low revs for negotiating gnarly stuff (Ryan acknowledges it floats up hills comfortably at near-idle speeds – thank you Shift Cam, he 'forgot' to say). A mechanical VVT system won't bring to the table the properties of a properly designed low-speed cam. Sorry, Suzuki-san.

I must admit when I rode the 1250 Roadster, I didn't notice a specific change point/difference in pull as I caned it up through the rev range and gears. I fear he maketh too much of the 'compromise' made by using two cam profiles rather than some continuously variable incarnation, and heavily loaded GS riders will appreciate the overtaking power on the highway (not in the gravel as he suggests it was designed for but wasted in that environment). BMW's are notorious (is that the right word) for being very economical around mid-revs, corresponding to about 100 km/h – I wouldn't be surprised if tuners could smooth out the dip in the torque curve further with adjustments to fuelling and timing.

Ryan scoffs that the 1250 has a dyslexic "134 hp for the highway and 143 Nm for the dirt". Actually, Ryan, torque is also for the highway – power is calculated by multiplying torque and rpm, so the amount of torque is useful in both situations. In fact peak torque is at around 6500 rpm – mere mortals are not going to be able to use that in the dirt, at least not for long! Dyno chart shown below (the older wet head is hardly smooth either ...).

He even mocks the three cornered oil filler cap that has been a feature of Boxer engines for how long now? And he is clearly unaware that it is normal for wet-heads not to require oil top-ups between services, so if you manage to lose the tool when doing a service, you shouldn't be left unsupervised in Mongolia anyway.

Hill start control? Again, he mocks it, being completely unaware that it can be over-ridden. I expect it would be rather handy starting off on an uphill gravel trail. Who's the fool?

"Maybe people will finally walk away from these things", he finishes with. Given that the 1250 is more ride-able/tractable than the 1200 it replaces, I don't think so. Let's come back to this in a couple years with the sales figures, Ryan. I predict GS new bike sales will continue to go from strength to strength, notwithstanding your pompous, know-it-all review.

There, I explained my perspective of his review after all.

107174
 

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I am not impressed with Ryan's review either.

Regarding system failure, from the tech videos on YouTube it seems that the actuator/solenoid is activated every time the cam is shifted. (The end of the solenid plunger engages with grooves on the end of the camshaft and shifts it sideways.) To me this means that the solenoid plunger is probably spring loaded to return to the "don't shift cam" position. This again means that a failure of the solenoid will just result in the cam staying in whatever position it is in when the failure happens, so you will be able to drive on with reduced performance.

There could be a possibility for the cam to stop in an intermediate position if the solenoid fails while shifting the cam, but this is probably highly unlikely.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
I think we may all assume that Panzermann will not be buying one any time soon...
 
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