Rode a R1200GS - Wrist Twisters
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post #1 of 41 Old 05-21-2009, 07:31 PM Thread Starter
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Rode a R1200GS



Our tavern general manager recently bought a new 1200Gs, beautiful bike, matte black and rugged as hell. I'd ridden it once briefly just around the block, Gin and I went for a ride on the '07 FJR tonight and stopped by to say hi. He tossed me the keys and we took it out for a longer ride.

It handled two up with no problem, big strong machine that makes you want to ford rivers and blaze trails through the badlands. Lots of torque, different power delivery than the I-4's I'm used to but plenty of grunt. It has that typical boxer shake at idle but is smooth once under way. I was impressed at the wind protection from the relatively small windshield when we hopped on the interstate for a few miles. Handles well, feels like a giant dirt bike, reacts to input quickly and steers easily.

I liked it, don't know that I want one but I can certainly see the appeal. It's a very attractive bike too, all transformer looking with interesting angles and naked machinery. It looks kind of grey in the pic, but it's similar to the 919 asphalt black, very serious looking.

Definitely different approaches to touring between the big GS and the FJR, I lean more towards the sport touring approach but then again I probably wouldn't ride the FJR to Alaska or Chile while the GS is just begging for an intercontinental tour.

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post #2 of 41 Old 05-21-2009, 07:34 PM
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Get the ADV and welcome to the darkside!

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post #3 of 41 Old 05-21-2009, 07:43 PM
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Nice review. No need for a big heavy pig to ride to AK, I rode my CBR600!

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post #4 of 41 Old 05-21-2009, 07:52 PM
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I've been admiring these bikes for a few years now, and I think they look completely badasss....I think they would suit my riding style just fine, too. I enjoy the sport touring, but there have already been times when I really wanted to take my 919 places where I know it would get me in trouble. I have yet to ride a GS, but I'd sure like to. Msybe I'll have that chance sometime. I do know that one of these would set me back budget-wise a lot more than my 9er has, though...Sounds like you guys had a lot of fun, so I'm happy for ya!

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post #5 of 41 Old 05-21-2009, 08:06 PM Thread Starter
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You know what else is different on that bike, instead of dodging every pavement imperfection and manhole cover I found myself actually aiming for the bumps and bad surfaces just for the fun of it. The suspension is definitely tuned to soak up some serious rough stuff, our crappy city streets don't faze it.

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post #6 of 41 Old 05-22-2009, 02:13 AM
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i miss my GS for sure. add the panniers and wire wheels and the look goes from rugged to bad ass tough as nails rugged.

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post #7 of 41 Old 05-22-2009, 06:17 AM Thread Starter
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He's trying to decide which panniers to get right now, think he's leaning towards BMW oem hard boxes.

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post #8 of 41 Old 05-22-2009, 07:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sbeau1960 View Post
He's trying to decide which panniers to get right now, think he's leaning towards BMW oem hard boxes.
He has to go ALU ...

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post #9 of 41 Old 05-22-2009, 07:03 AM
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Scott, have you decided which FJR to keep yet? Any luck on the sale of the R1200c?



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post #10 of 41 Old 06-08-2009, 08:00 AM
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I just had the opportunity to ride one yesterday. My buddy from university was visiting his parents for the weekend and invited me over for the afternoon. After a bit of talking about our bikes his dad offered to swap bikes and show me some local twisties to prove the competence of his gs. I was genuinely surprised how well it handled and the lean angles it could obtain. it was a bit unnerving at first, but once you get over the warbling of the tires, it just keeps leaning more and more.

Just like sbeau said, the suspension was amazing. I was aiming for bumps in the road, but the suspension soaks them up without unsettling the bike at all -even mid-corner. After ~200kms of windy roads, my arms were definitely more tired than they would have been on the 919 due to the extra weight, but the potential for long distance touring seemed almost limitless due to the great protection the fairing offered. While It was hard keeping up with the 919 on corner exit (and impossible when he uncorked the 919), the GS doesn't constantly tempt you to supra-legal speeds like my honda.

It was a really awesome ride with the linked brakes, the awesome telelever front suspension -which inspires you on corner entry, ABS -which I tested at 45mph on a gravel road, and other gadgetry but comes with a super high price tag. If I had the means, I think I'd switch up to a GS ADV like the one I rode. I mean he's owned his for 4 years and put on 70k kms with absolutely no mechanical failure whatsoever. The frame and suspension still all look great even though the guy never washes his bike. So I guess you're paying for build quality -not that you can't get that with Honda for much less $$$.

By the end of the ride we had traveled nearly 400kms, and aside from my slightly tired arms from the corners, I felt fresh and realy to keep riding right through the night. I would suggest to those considering one, that a quick test at a dealer will leave a sour taste in your mouth if you've just come off the 919, you really need to take one out for an entire day and try it on the freeway, country roads, and even some gravel to appreciate the versatility and quirky nature of the bike.. Again, like sbeau stated, the power delivery is completely different, and it DOES sound just like the old john deere I used to drive to mow the ditches for the county -albeit a little faster. But the low maintenance and versatility left a bug that I just can't shake.

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post #11 of 41 Old 06-08-2009, 08:16 AM
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An R12GS ADV is my next bike. Next being who the hell knows when, but it's what I need...or maybe that 800, ugg!

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post #12 of 41 Old 06-08-2009, 08:49 AM Thread Starter
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I'm holding out for a yellow and black F800GS eventually, all decked out with armor, panniers and extra lights. Almost as much power as the 1200, an upright twin for more clearance, and less weight, seems more my type of bike. Not discounting the big GS though, awesome machines!

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post #13 of 41 Old 06-21-2009, 08:28 AM
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So how did the 45 mph brake test on gravel work out ? I have been doing some research on BMW's K 1300 S. Sweet bike except for the price tag. I was surprised to see how many inovations BMW has had in the motorcycle world. First production fuel inj, paralever and duo lever suspension, linked brakes with ABS. Still getting used to seeing an off road bike with bags !

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post #14 of 41 Old 06-24-2009, 09:00 AM Thread Starter
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Big GS, little GS




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post #15 of 41 Old 06-24-2009, 09:52 AM
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got an email from the gent who bought my GS. Two days ago he rode from Dallas to Key West in one day. Spent the night and has now headed north bound for Prudhoe Bay, Alaska. Said the final drive failed at 48,000 miles (that was sometime ago) and was replaced under warranty so he's rocking it.

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post #16 of 41 Old 06-24-2009, 12:13 PM
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All I can add is that it takes a real man to own and ride a GS-Adv ...

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post #17 of 41 Old 06-24-2009, 12:18 PM
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post #18 of 41 Old 08-30-2009, 10:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sbeau1960 View Post
I'm holding out for a yellow and black F800GS eventually, all decked out with armor, panniers and extra lights. Almost as much power as the 1200, an upright twin for more clearance, and less weight, seems more my type of bike. Not discounting the big GS though, awesome machines!
I have to agree the 800 seems like a better package if you're planning to spend more time in the dirt (not just acess roads). I think my next bike be will be a dual sport of some sort, ideally the 800GS. I mean geez, i live in a prime location for it plus i'm not far from AK.

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post #19 of 41 Old 08-30-2009, 11:47 AM
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I want one bad!

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post #20 of 41 Old 11-21-2009, 03:57 PM
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I ride an '07 919, which I love. Just came back from a 4 day tour from DE, where I live to Deals Gap, NC. The 919 is great for the mountain roads, but that 680 miles down and back is tough on the 919. I am 50 yrs old, and all that wind and cold temps. for 13 hours adds up. So, I just put a deposit on a left over '08 R 1200 GS low susp. ( I'm almost 5'7") Hope to pick it up sometime early December. Saw iy last Oct, 2008 while touring through VA and TN. Bike still in dealer, 11 months later. Trading an '80 BMW R80/7, less than 12K miles on OD, if anyone interested. Keeping 919!!

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post #21 of 41 Old 11-21-2009, 03:58 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gr8fodad View Post
I ride an '07 919, which I love. Just came back from a 4 day tour from DE, where I live to Deals Gap, NC. The 919 is great for the mountain roads, but that 680 miles down and back is tough on the 919. I am 50 yrs old, and all that wind and cold temps. for 13 hours adds up. So, I just put a deposit on a left over '08 R 1200 GS low susp. ( I'm almost 5'7") Hope to pick it up sometime early December. Saw iy last Oct, 2008 while touring through VA and TN. Bike still in dealer, 11 months later. Trading an '80 BMW R80/7, less than 12K miles on OD, if anyone interested. Keeping 919!!
Congrats, you'll love that GS! Plus you get to keep the 919, best of both worlds!

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post #22 of 41 Old 11-21-2009, 08:07 PM
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congrats on the new ride!

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post #23 of 41 Old 12-03-2009, 07:35 PM
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Picked up 1200GS yesterday. rode 300 miles from Wilmington, DE to Lynchburg, VA in 33' weather. Left at 4:30am, started raining in north VA, was about 40', however I was dry, just a little cold. I was riding my 1980 R80 BMW. Rained for final 150 miles. Took a few hours to complete sale of new GS, left around 4 pm, pouring rain, about 42'F. Was nice and warm with Heated Hand grips and new Heated vest. GS rides so Big compared to 919, but love the comfort and wind protection. Finally got home @ 10:15PM, rained the whole way home, but temperature rose to mid 50's once I hit the DC area. Bike feels big, but handles so well. I love upright seat position, no more achy shoulders. I feel like a King in his throne doing 70mph down I-95. Love the new GS, however, 919 feels so quick and lively. Two Boss rides!

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post #24 of 41 Old 12-04-2009, 05:22 AM Thread Starter
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Glad you love your new ride, too bad you couldn't have had better weather to take her home in but I guess you proved it's an all weather machine!

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post #25 of 41 Old 12-04-2009, 05:26 AM
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Perfect answer the GS and the 919. @ a 30" inseam and 50+ the 1200 is too much for me. I've ridden the 600 at a demo, vintage days at mid-Ohio, and my son rode the 800. I need to give the 800 a test. Honda just won't bring the tran-alp to the USA. Glad you like the 1200.

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post #26 of 41 Old 12-05-2009, 12:51 PM
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Thanks, snowing now, half tempted to go for a spin now...but kids would think I'm insane. I guess insanity and passion aren't too distant.

...nothing left to do, but smile, smile, smile...
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post #27 of 41 Old 12-05-2009, 12:57 PM
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I want one bad!
a fat Asian with nipple hair or the GS?

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post #28 of 41 Old 03-28-2011, 08:25 AM
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i was wondering has anybody rode the 1150gs how are they. im looking at possibly selling my long time baby (and i mean long ive owned it since 94) a 1992 gsxr 1100ish, and getting one of these, ive been very tempted to buy one for some time, either the 1150 or the 12 but the 12 is at the outer range of what i might beable to snagg used.

ive been dualsporting my crf450rx for a year now and im enjoying that alot, although it is limited on its road performance lol tops out at 89 and cruising is nicest at 50mph.

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post #29 of 41 Old 03-28-2011, 05:23 PM
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Do your research, there are issues with the 1150's, I don't know the details but some friends are into the BMW's and they wouldn't touch one even for cheap$$.

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post #30 of 41 Old 03-28-2011, 05:40 PM
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Quote:
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i was wondering has anybody rode the 1150gs how are they. im looking at possibly selling my long time baby (and i mean long ive owned it since 94) a 1992 gsxr 1100ish, and getting one of these, ive been very tempted to buy one for some time, either the 1150 or the 12 but the 12 is at the outer range of what i might beable to snagg used.

ive been dualsporting my crf450rx for a year now and im enjoying that alot, although it is limited on its road performance lol tops out at 89 and cruising is nicest at 50mph.
I REALLY like the f800GS........the new Triumphs are sweet also....


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post #31 of 41 Old 03-29-2011, 09:26 AM
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Quote:
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i was wondering has anybody rode the 1150gs how are they. im looking at possibly selling my long time baby (and i mean long ive owned it since 94) a 1992 gsxr 1100ish, and getting one of these, ive been very tempted to buy one for some time, either the 1150 or the 12 but the 12 is at the outer range of what i might beable to snagg used.

ive been dualsporting my crf450rx for a year now and im enjoying that alot, although it is limited on its road performance lol tops out at 89 and cruising is nicest at 50mph.
GREAT BIKES. don't listen to nay-sayers. NO CANBUS -(read as you can do your own oil changes w/o buying a $700 canbus reader), rides just as well as the 1200, not quite as much on the top end, acesories are cheaper. Go for the dual-spark model as they all seem to mysteriously burn less oil. I had one for a month last fall and loved it.

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post #32 of 41 Old 03-30-2011, 03:33 PM
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I always go back and forth on these things. I know my next bike will be an adv. But which one. The big 1200GS are nice. Never rode one but sat on many and dreamed. Just not sure I can get pased the price tag and all the horor stories.

Right now i'm leaning towards small and cheap. Such as a versys with some suspension mods. A tiger800 is not out of the question yet. Depends on my mood come next spring (or this fall) and how much debt I'm willing to dive into.

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post #33 of 41 Old 03-30-2011, 10:03 PM
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yea arctic i know the f800s are getting good reviews, but they are still to new .................for me lol, i dont buy new. dual spark modle, ohh and i have another questions what is the main diff between a gs and a gsa, ive heard the gsa gets a larger tank and a lower 1st gear for off roady stuff but also has a shorter top gear, and the gs gets a smaller tank and a taller top gear.

i just dont know if i can bear selling my gsxr ive been through so many things with it, right now its a 60k something i think............well since i put on the PM race light rims which the front has no speedo hook up so im guessing the real mileage is somewhere between 70 and 80k

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post #34 of 41 Old 03-31-2011, 04:43 AM
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Unbelievable! ......I bet that bike would probably be worth more parted out. Unless you could find a tuner who wanted all the parts.

I say.......sell it, and buy something else cool to replace it.


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post #35 of 41 Old 03-31-2011, 05:30 PM
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I say keep it and buy something else too.

When my 919 died I got a 990 adv. It was comfy and had great wind protection. But it felt like I was riding arounda slug. And its the rocket ship of adventure bikes. I was questioning my wisdom in buying it because it was so "slow" to me.

What I'm saying is. If you have a fast bike now. You may want to think twice about getting rid of it and only having a fat slow one.

The GSA also has crash bars stock. Hand guards, about 1" more suspension travel and maybe extra lights. The tank ins't just bigger. Its HUGE. 8 gallons I think.

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post #36 of 41 Old 03-31-2011, 08:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sbeau1960 View Post
You know what else is different on that bike, instead of dodging every pavement imperfection and manhole cover I found myself actually aiming for the bumps and bad surfaces just for the fun of it. The suspension is definitely tuned to soak up some serious rough stuff, our crappy city streets don't faze it.
Theyr'e great for that! So is the 'Roadster'

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post #37 of 41 Old 03-31-2011, 10:46 PM
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Do your research, there are issues with the 1150's, I don't know the details but some friends are into the BMW's and they wouldn't touch one even for cheap$$.
Seems Final Drive failure on 1150's is higher than 1100's (though its the same design, driveline angle is a bit different)... or HANS assembling them tourqued some wrong. Majority of both have no problems, but the 1100 is prefered by many for (that) and other reasons (YMMV)

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post #38 of 41 Old 03-31-2011, 10:47 PM
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I say keep it and buy something else too.

When my 919 died I got a 990 adv. It was comfy and had great wind protection. But it felt like I was riding arounda slug. And its the rocket ship of adventure bikes. I was questioning my wisdom in buying it because it was so "slow" to me.

What I'm saying is. If you have a fast bike now. You may want to think twice about getting rid of it and only having a fat slow one.

The GSA also has crash bars stock. Hand guards, about 1" more suspension travel and maybe extra lights. The tank ins't just bigger. Its HUGE. 8 gallons I think.
well i have 3 bikes right now lol, my long time 92 gsxr 1100ish, a 03 gsxr 1000(soon to also have a ish behind it lol) and my 03 crf450rx offroad on roadish.

arctic your right if i were to part that 1100 it would be worth sooooooo much more money, many parts on it where rare even when the bike was new little alone now days, but it would kill me to see it tore down like selling off parts of your soul man.

now yea i love to go fast, but i have been thinking about these bikes aswell for some time, i think i realy need to ride one to see if its even close to what i would like to do. i do plan on true on and off roading no bsing easy gravel, i will go offroad lol.

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post #39 of 41 Old 04-01-2011, 05:27 AM
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Seriously though Jim....In knowing you, I just don't see you on a GSA. You've ALWAYS been about high performance, light weight, and being quick at whatever you do.

Personally.....I also have a decision to make at the end of this summer..... I need another project. I'm leaning towards an adventure equipped DR650......

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post #40 of 41 Old 04-02-2011, 10:22 PM
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and thats what worries me the most, that ill sell my baby and hate the gs, and wish i had never bought it lol.

i realy need to ride a gs for a day or something i think and see if this is where i want to go, im not sure if im ready to slow down just yet lol

godzuki is offline  
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