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Howdy all,

Well, I picked up my new-to-me 2010 R1200R this past weekend. With just a hair over 1400 miles on the clock, this beauty was barely broken in and a sweetheart of a deal! Since we had a bit of a reprieve from winter Sunday, I was able to get out for a couple hours to add a few miles (sadly just over 50 - too many chores to take care of). Anyway, I did some riding in town, a short bit on country roads, and a little longer jaunt on the highway. Thought I'd share my first impressions. Please keep in mind that up to this point, I've been a cruiser guy and my other bike is a 2011 HD Ultra Limited.

Likes:

• This thing is torquey and FAST!! Like “holy cow!” fast!! I was going thru the gears pretty quick a few times and I could feel and see the forks extend every time a made a transition to a higher gear. I think it’d be very easy to get the front wheel up – not that I’m gonna try any time soon. :) 0 to 60 mph (70, 80,...) happens as quick as thought. HUGE grin on my face as I type this and think back on my short ride...

• Handling is absolutely marvelous. No effort at all is required to throw it into a corner – simply dip your shoulder and you’re there. Of course, with the roads here still covered in cinders (winter is slowly departing), I wasn’t doing anything remotely aggressive – quite the contrary. Once spring is fully upon us here, I'm sure I'm just going to be blown away with how well this scoot tracks.

• Brakes – they are a bit touchy but not overly so. I expected this and was trying to be very careful modulating them. Still, I found myself being pretty heavy-handed/footed at first. Toward the end of the ride on Sunday, my braking was smoothing out though. I'll need to spend a bit of time practicing my panic stops so I know what I can get away with here.

• Riding position – much, much more comfy than I’d have imagined. I only did 50 miles; but, I was completely comfortable. No back or wrist pain and I didn’t even think about my shoulders (the reach to the bars on my Harley sometimes causes a bit of discomfort there). I am still getting used to the mid-set pegs though. I’m just glad I haven’t popped my shins on the cylinder heads yet. ;-)

Dislikes:

• The mirrors vibrate pretty bad at highway speed. This makes it hard to make out any real detail. I already found a potential “fix” in the Wunderlich mirror extenders (anyone have experience with these?) At $40 U.S. they're worth a shot I think; so, I’ll probably try that. Worst case is, I’ll swap the stock mirrors out for something better. Suggestions are welcome! :)

• Turn signal switches. The configuration is similar to HD. On the Harley though, the turn signal self-cancel works VERY well. On the rare occasion when you do need to cancel a signal, you just push on the switch again. On the BMW they are also *supposed* to be self-canceling (right?); but, that doesn’t work very well at all - at least on my bike. Anyway, the cancel switch on the right bar is very narrow and crammed just above the right turn signal. For the most part, I had to look down to hit it. I was also hitting the cancel switch occasionally when trying to nail the right signal. Likewise, the left signal is so close to the horn it’s easy to hit it instead of the left signal (which I did once or twice). I just think they could improve this layout a bit. There's room. :)

Those are really the only things I didn't “like” so far (and these are extremely minor). The mirror issue, I’ll correct, the turn signals... Meh - I’ll get used to them over time. Otherwise, the only mods I have in mind are cylinder head guards and a more functional wind screen. My R12R came with the small sport shield - which did a better job than I thought it would. Still, I can see this bike eating up a lot of miles and I’d like a bit more still air when I’m cruising on the highway. ;-)

Overall - and by far - my feeling is: This bike is absolutely AWESOME! Did I mention it was quick?! I think it’s gonna be an awful lot of fun!

Thanks for letting a newbie ramble!

--Mike
 

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Enjoyed your write-up! I know what you mean about the huge grin. We had one day of 37 degree weather here in Iowa, and I got about an hour of riding in on my new R12R. As you mentioned, had to be careful with the winter stuff on the roads. Weather aside, amazing, amazing, amazing - handling & acceleration are out of this world! I had a hard time sleeping that night reliving the ride.

I do have the wunderlich extenders, and haven't been bothered by any vibration (couple of caveats though - I never used the original mirrors, and have also fitted aftermarket Rizoma mirrors)

It's great to see people getting excited about the Spring thaw and getting out there (for those of us not in warm places).
 

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Very thorough evaluation. Thanks for the post. Enjoyed it. The BMW switchgear has been the source or many complaints. You just have to get used to it. I ride a Japanese bike sometimes on weekdays. Some newer BMWs have single switchgear like that. What signal is BMW sending us?
 

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Mike, if your mirrors vibrate to the point that you can't see what they are reflecting, you may be in need of a tune up. There is a thread on this on this forum. There, you will see that there are as many people discussing cures for vibrating mirrors as there are people who say that their mirrors don't vibrate. As for my own experience, when i first got the bike- my first boxer driven wheels-my mirrors did vibrate quite a bit. I assumed that this was a characteristic of the bike, although I hadnt recalled the mirrors vibrating on the dealer's demo bike. When i had the 600m service, the dealer mentioned that, in addition to the service, he had adjusted the throttle bodies because they were out of sync. Presto, no more vibrating mirrors among other benefits. What I take from the above is that, if some people's mirrors vibrate to the point of uselessness and other people's don't on the same make and model machines, the problem is not in the mirrors. Extenders may mask the problem; but won't cure the cause of it. Look to fix that and you will have a smoother, more responsive ride.
 

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Nice commentary, Mike. My new R (300 km) has oval-shaped mirrors, which already I have found to be much more buzz-free (almost totally, in fact) than the circular mirrors on my previous GS and on earlier R's. As for the switch-gear, it does take bit of getting used to, and even after riding mainly boxer twins with that system since 1998 I still make the occasional 'fumble', but I have no doubt you'll quickly find it totally intuitive.

Cyl head guards are almost a must and I have always fitted them at first service and will be doing so this time.

My take on the sports screen, which I also have, is that it's about the size of a thumb-nail and about as useful, although certainly OK for urban riding around town. I have ordered a medium-height semi-touring screen (+70mm taller, and a bit wider across the base) for my longer trips, it coming in at $187, in a nice light-tint blue that will nicely complement the Montego Blue paintwork.

Another minor mod you may like to think about is a screen/ guard for the oil cooler/ radiator that is so low down and immediately behind the front tyre that it seems to me to be very vulnerable to flying rocks. I've fitted one already...

Enjoy the bike and welcome on board...

L of S
 

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Discussion Starter #6
las - Good point and definitely worth looking into. Like you said, I just thought the mirror issue was part of the character of the bike. Thanks for the info!!
 

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Hi L of S!

Thanks for all the good info - and congratulations on your new ride too! I hadn't thought about an oil cooler / radiator guard but I'll add that to the list. Better safe than sorry. ;-)

The windscreen... yep, that'll get swapped out pretty quick. I just need to figure out exactly which one I want to go with - and what height. I know there are a lot available to choose from; though, it seems like a bunch of folks go with Cee Bailey. I also saw a ZTech (or something like that) that caught my eye. Decisions, decisions...

Thanks again for the kind welcome!

--Mike
 

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Hi ravinxd! Here's hoping spring formally arrives soon for us! I have a fondness for the mid-West and your neck of the woods. I was stationed in Rapid City, SD for 8 years (at Ellsworth AFB) and truly miss being out your way... well, except for the winters. ;-) They're long enough here in PA - but not near as chilly as out your way. Hah!

Anyway, thanks for the welcome and hope we both get to put some real miles on these machines soon!

--Mike
 

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Hi Clem - I'm sure I'll get used to the switchgear over time - and it'll be fun taking time to do just that. :) This is my first BMW and I'm honestly just thrilled (hope that doesn't make me a "bad" Harley guy :)). That boxer engine just drew me in and the lines of the R12R... absolutely gorgeous to these eyes. Of course I'm just saying what you here already know. ;-)

I think it's gonna be fun hanging out around here too. Seems like a great bunch of folks!

--Mike
 

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The switch gear is a nuisance at first but now when I hop on a 'normal' bike I'm fumbling around and hitting the horn lol. boxer problems...

As far as the vibration I find at the rate of speed I have these problems I'm more concerned with what's in front :001_tongue:

Does your bike have traction control? With mine on the bike won't let the front tire stay in the air long, keeps up my street cred and almost impossible to land on your noggin. Enjoy the cornering and keep on top of air pressure, my stock metz have been slowly leaking air and you definitely lose that feeling by the lb of air in the front tire.
 

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Dislikes:

• The mirrors vibrate pretty bad at highway speed. This makes it hard to make out any real detail. I already found a potential “fix” in the Wunderlich mirror extenders (anyone have experience with these?) At $40 U.S. they're worth a shot I think; so, I’ll probably try that. Worst case is, I’ll swap the stock mirrors out for something better. Suggestions are welcome! :)

• Turn signal switches. The configuration is similar to HD. On the Harley though, the turn signal self-cancel works VERY well. On the rare occasion when you do need to cancel a signal, you just push on the switch again. On the BMW they are also *supposed* to be self-canceling (right?); but, that doesn’t work very well at all - at least on my bike. Anyway, the cancel switch on the right bar is very narrow and crammed just above the right turn signal. For the most part, I had to look down to hit it. I was also hitting the cancel switch occasionally when trying to nail the right signal. Likewise, the left signal is so close to the horn it’s easy to hit it instead of the left signal (which I did once or twice). I just think they could improve this layout a bit. There's room. :)



--Mike
Hey meturner, welcome to the forum and congrats on the new (for you) bike,

As well as you, I didn't like the mirror vibration and want it to fix it, there are few solutions that you can do before buying a whole new set.

I stole this from atractaspis who stole it from another forum.

remove each mirror, insert an O-ring at the base of the stalk, above the threads, and another at the top of the nut that screws on to the threaded portion of the stalk. Voila! Now, go take a ride, and notice that the dreaded buzzing - particularly in the infamous 4-5,000 rpm range - is gone! Now my mirrors act like every other bike I've owned (the numbers are legion), and I can actually see what's behind me. Calm and clear (is that a copper behind me?) up to the most ridiculous rpm levels. I'm talking above 6 grand, where I visit only rarely when revving the beast through the gears. Oh, just a hint of vibes sneak in as the revs rise, especially on the right side for some reason, but WOW what an improvement. Try it, you'll like it!

Now if you've never removed your mirrors, be advised of one little problem I had. As I stated above, the mirrors have a threaded section at the base of the stalk. They are held onto the bar by a specialized nut that screws on to the threaded section from below. Which means you've got to get under the handlebar, and using an allen wrench (there should be one in your toolkit that fits), turn that nut until it comes off (careful not to drop that nut and lose it!). The left mirror went fine, but on the right side, that nut is partially obscured by the switchgear housing, so I had to fiddle with it quite a bit before I could get the wrench on it. When trying to re-mount the mirror, access was so cramped that I got the nut on kinda sideways, and ... promptly proceeded to strip the threads on the mirror stalk. Major Bummer! After checking Ebay for some replacement mirrors, I decided to try filing the knackered threads, and sure enough, that did the trick. Didn't take much, just ran a file along the threads and cleaned up the gnarled threads a bit, and when I tested the nut on the threads off the bike, it went on just fine. So I attacked it again ON the bike, this time using my fingers to get the nut started straight, and in a moment I knew I had it. Couldn't wait to go for a ride and try out my solution, which I now know works like a charm!

Another option that will correct the problem, will be to fill the handle bar with BB pellets, stainless steel so you don't get any corrosion inside.


The turn signal cancellation works pretty well, at least on my bike and I haven't heard many people complaining about it, and I'm sure is just a matter of getting used to it or you can get something like this:

Turn Signal Cancel Lever R1200 R 8410122 | BMW Wunderlich America

If you want to change how your bike looks while fixing the vibration problem, take a look at this threads:
http://www.r1200rforum.com/forum/bmw-r1200r-general-discussions-7/new-bmw-amd-forum-1149/
or
http://www.r1200rforum.com/forum/bmw-r1200r-general-discussions-7/frickin-mirrors-926/
or
http://www.r1200rforum.com/forum/bmw-r1200r-general-discussions-7/question-about-my-new-r1200rs-engine-vibration-1172/
And agree with you, this thing is fast :D:D:D
 

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• Turn signal switches. The configuration is similar to HD. On the Harley though, the turn signal self-cancel works VERY well. On the rare occasion when you do need to cancel a signal, you just push on the switch again. On the BMW they are also *supposed* to be self-canceling (right?); but, that doesn’t work very well at all - at least on my bike.

--Mike
I don't know about your owner's/rider's manual, but mine says that the turn signals auto-cancel after 300m/1000ft, or after about 10 sec of motion. Most people don't ride that far before they want the turn signals off.
 

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My son has been riding with me for about 6 years now. He tells me, from one of our early outings on the R that the front wheel does come off the ground... he never saw that when I rode the prior bike, VTX 1800R.

I have denied it.:closedeyes:
 

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Hi Hoshiko - Thanks for the great info! I'm going to give that O-ring solution a shot. Simple solutions are often the best. ;-)
 

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DJ - Good point. It may very well be that I'm just not waiting long enough for them to cancel on their own. I'll check that out next time I'm able to ride. Since Sunday the temps have fallen again and had a bunch of short snow squalls yesterday (no accumulation thankfully but still...). Hoping for some better weather next week. ;-)
 

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What bothers me about the turn signal cut off is that it requires fairly late turning notification on the highway, because of how fast you're going. I frequently find myself pushing the switch more than once to keep the signal on before the exit.
 

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the front wheel does come off the ground... he never saw that when I rode the prior bike, VTX 1800R.

I have denied it.:closedeyes:

Pictures?????

Hi Hoshiko - Thanks for the great info! I'm going to give that O-ring solution a shot. Simple solutions are often the best. ;-)
don't forget to come back and let us know how did that go, the more pictures and info the better.

What bothers me about the turn signal cut off is that it requires fairly late turning notification on the highway, because of how fast you're going. I frequently find myself pushing the switch more than once to keep the signal on before the exit.
:iagree::iagree::iagree:
 

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I bought a new Red R last fall. About 6 miles from the dealer I thought "I wonder if it will lift the front wheel?" I knew to keep it below 4,000 so I whacked the throttle at 3,000 rpm.
The front wheel came up and the motor went Pffft pffft putt.... The front wheel came right back down. I kept on riding and finally figured out it was the traction control kicking in.

What a sweet bike.

The cancel on the turn signals is slow. I find myself turning them on early so they will go out after the turn. In the city I almost always use the cancel button.

I also have an airhead. Controls are different. It takes me a moment to switch my mind from one bike to another.


Enjoy your new bike.
 
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