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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Thank you for allowing me access to this R1200GS forum.

Although I'm a R-RT driver since 1997, i've a request for BMW riders of other models like the GS series.

Let me introduce myselves,
My name is Robbert, 50+ years old and a BMW rider since 1997. Last year I started a techical study at a dutch academy ("one is never to old te learn" according to a dutch saying) For an assigment of the course reliability of technical systems, I have to write an technical paper about failure modes and a root-cause analyses. I'm challenged to "bring my own problem" and my motorcycle is the lucky one;-)

Some background:
In 1997 I bought a second hand motorcycle to commute between my house and work in the “randstad” in Holland. It was a BMW R80RT. As I am interested in mechanics, I decided to do the maintenance my selves. As source of information I used 3th party maintenance manuals and internet fora. In 2019 I bought my third motorcycle a BMW R1200RT-P, a former police motorcycle, again with the intention to do (almost) all maintenance myself. Browsing over Internet fora I found a lot of disturbing items about failures of the drive-shaft of these motorcycles. I’ve never read these kind of failures on the older R-series motorcycles.

The assignment:
The assignment will cover common failures of the drive-shaft of BMW R1200 model motorcycles. It will contain an analysis of the failure modes, a root cause analyse and when possible advise how to prevent these failures.

Using a survey I try get collect information about drive-shaft fails, can I find a relation to certain models or usage?

I would be greatful if you would fill in this Survey if youre motorcycle had a drive-shaft failure. It should take not more than 5 minutes of your time.

All provided information will only be used for this assignment.

Robbert

link to the: Survey
 

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I'm not into surveys as they are like statics and you can make them come out however you like by manipulating what the input is.

This is like asking "how long is a piece of string". What is considered a driveline failure and are direveline failures all lumped together no mater the mileage?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for your reply. It's not my intention to manipulate the outcome. I don't have BMW shares or any commercial interest in this subject. The Mileage at the time of the failure is indeed one of the questions as is the year of manufacturing of the bike.

regards,

Robbert.
 

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What about conditions the bike was used in? Dry desert. repeated salt water exposure at the beach, on road, off road etc. What about GS vs GSA suspension as the GSA is longer increasing universal joint angles. Same with GS standard and "low" suspensions. Then then there are maintnenace intervals.

With so many variables it would be impossible to effectively diagnose a single root cause.

I've has 7 R1200GS and pulled the drive shafts out of all but one. The 6 that I have pulled for inspection were all between 40,000 and 55,000 and all were in excellent condition. Spline and universal joints showed little to no sign of wear.

The one I did not pull was a 2006 that I bought in 2017 with 11,274 miles on it. Then sold it in 2020 with 20,000 miles on it. The bike was extremely clean and lead an easy life. At 20K it was just too little of mileage to even think wear would be an issue.
 

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Have you even looked at the survey? It appears you have not.
I have not because I have not expierence a drive line failure, knock on wood.

Update:

Out of curiosity I did open the survey and glanced at the 1st couple of questions. In the opening thread the OP asked about the "GS" series motorcycles but omits air and oil head variants. It only covers part of the hexhead series and no choice for GSA. Rigth from the beginning the survey is flawed.
 

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I fill the form, actually there is no problem with the shaft, but when open for the maintenance check all joints and splines. Unfortunately there is no pictures. Only "problem" that I see was: rear U joint does not fall free in one of both axels. In this moment (winter with half meter snow) I decide prevantive change in specialized service for all type of cardans. Also prevanive change both the boots. I hate to waiting for cracks. 14years bike I thing no one before me change them.
 

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I have a R1200GSA LC mj 11/2016. I had to replace the drive shaft twice. First time was after 65,000 km, rear joint was sticky and caused vibrations. Had to replace it again at 147,000 km, front joint was worn out completely, rear joint was sticky. Quality of BMW is not really getting better...
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
What about conditions the bike was used in? Dry desert. repeated salt water exposure at the beach, on road, off road etc. What about GS vs GSA suspension as the GSA is longer increasing universal joint angles. Same with GS standard and "low" suspensions. Then then there are maintnenace intervals.

With so many variables it would be impossible to effectively diagnose a single root cause.

I've has 7 R1200GS and pulled the drive shafts out of all but one. The 6 that I have pulled for inspection were all between 40,000 and 55,000 and all were in excellent condition. Spline and universal joints showed little to no sign of wear.

The one I did not pull was a 2006 that I bought in 2017 with 11,274 miles on it. Then sold it in 2020 with 20,000 miles on it. The bike was extremely clean and lead an easy life. At 20K it was just too little of mileage to even think wear would be an issue.
Thanks for the tip about the salt water, I'll add it to the list

Robbert.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
At the moment I don't receive any Emails with attachment on my gmail account ([email protected]). I cannot find why. Emails without attachments do arrive.

I've changed the Email address in the survey to: [email protected]
So if you've already taken the effort of sending me photo's to the Gmail address, please can you send them again but now to [email protected] ?

p.s. anybody knows If I have to enable attachments in Gmail ?
 

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Being curious and wondering what the purpose of this survey is.
Let me introduce myselves,
My name is Robbert, 50+ years old and a BMW rider since 1997. Last year I started a techical study at a dutch academy ("one is never to old te learn" according to a dutch saying) For an assigment of the course reliability of technical systems, I have to write an technical paper about failure modes and a root-cause analyses. I'm challenged to "bring my own problem" and my motorcycle is the lucky one;-)
 

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Thank you for allowing me access to this R1200GS forum.

Although I'm a R-RT driver since 1997, i've a request for BMW riders of other models like the GS series.

Let me introduce myselves,
My name is Robbert, 50+ years old and a BMW rider since 1997. Last year I started a techical study at a dutch academy ("one is never to old te learn" according to a dutch saying) For an assigment of the course reliability of technical systems, I have to write an technical paper about failure modes and a root-cause analyses. I'm challenged to "bring my own problem" and my motorcycle is the lucky one;-)

Some background:
In 1997 I bought a second hand motorcycle to commute between my house and work in the “randstad” in Holland. It was a BMW R80RT. As I am interested in mechanics, I decided to do the maintenance my selves. As source of information I used 3th party maintenance manuals and internet fora. In 2019 I bought my third motorcycle a BMW R1200RT-P, a former police motorcycle, again with the intention to do (almost) all maintenance myself. Browsing over Internet fora I found a lot of disturbing items about failures of the drive-shaft of these motorcycles. I’ve never read these kind of failures on the older R-series motorcycles.

The assignment:
The assignment will cover common failures of the drive-shaft of BMW R1200 model motorcycles. It will contain an analysis of the failure modes, a root cause analyse and when possible advise how to prevent these failures.

Using a survey I try get collect information about drive-shaft fails, can I find a relation to certain models or usage?

I would be greatful if you would fill in this Survey if youre motorcycle had a drive-shaft failure. It should take not more than 5 minutes of your time.

All provided information will only be used for this assignment.

Robbert

link to the: Survey
Hi Robbert

I am very interested in this survey after my bike suffered a second catastrophic drive shaft failure in 14k (miles). Let me explain my particular failure; both times, the bolt that secures the torsion bar to the top of the rear hub has dropped out causing the hub to over-rotate, pulling the driveshaft off the output shaft causing significant damage to both components.
Both instances have been under the same circumstances, i.e. off road and under power so fortunately in a relatively safe environment. I would dread to think what would happen if this happened to someone on a busy road!

BMW will not admit that they have seen this issue previously and subsequently are charging me full price for the repair which as you can imagine is very expensive!

Anyone had similar issues? I am about to write to the head of BMW Motorrad in the UK to see how he will respond.

Cheers Martin

#checkyourtortionboltissecure
 

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Hi Robbert

I am very interested in this survey after my bike suffered a second catastrophic drive shaft failure in 14k (miles). Let me explain my particular failure; both times, the bolt that secures the torsion bar to the top of the rear hub has dropped out causing the hub to over-rotate, pulling the driveshaft off the output shaft causing significant damage to both components.
Both instances have been under the same circumstances, i.e. off road and under power so fortunately in a relatively safe environment. I would dread to think what would happen if this happened to someone on a busy road!

BMW will not admit that they have seen this issue previously and subsequently are charging me full price for the repair which as you can imagine is very expensive!

Anyone had similar issues? I am about to write to the head of BMW Motorrad in the UK to see how he will respond.

Cheers Martin

#checkyourtortionboltissecure
OP was last logged in on 10/27/2020 or a little over two (2) years ago.

Even if he were still collecting data these instances would further skew the outcome. As explained yes you had two (2) driveline failures and if we stop there it looks bad. However reading on the root cause of the failure was another component failing. This is the problem with surveys and statics is depending on what data you do and do not collect you can make the end result be whatever you want.

Unfortunately I do not think BMW will do much towards the driveline repair/replacement as they were the outcome of another part failing.

As it was since this thread was opened 2+ years ago I have bought an additional 7 Hexhead GS's and have found two of them had drivelines that had very small flat spots on the lower U-joint. These driveshafts were replaced with aftermarket unit's. One has $under 13,000 miles the around 52,000. Now would these driveshafts be considered failed as I pulled them as they were not 100%??
 

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Statisticians are the ultimate manipulators. Never believe the results they tout as they are always skewed in one direction or another either purposely by design or ignorance 99.9% of the time according to recent surveys. :)
 

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