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Technical Motorbike Help

BMW Rough at slow speeds

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BMW Rough at slow speeds

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Hi all. I have a 06 BMW R1200RT that has issues with slow speed running. jerky throttle etc. I have only owned the Bike for a few months, and it was almost on it's way, it was that bad. Looking on various websites/Forums, I noticed that a lot of people and I mean a Lot, Have these problems with their 1200 engine BMW's. Apparently a lot of lean burn engines have the prob. So if anyone has had similar probs, I would be interested to hear from you,thanks.

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Whatsisname? @ 08/07/2014 12:15  

R12's can run a little lumpy, especialy in the hot weather.

Try running the higher octain fuel. There suposed to run at least 98oct eventho they say hey can run on the cheepo 95oct unleaded but to be honnest they realy dont like it. Especialy when they get hot.
This weather realy wont help.

State of tune is important as well. A good fresh air filter and new plugs every 6000 miles works wounders as does a regular throttle body balance.

Also running a more open silencer helps as it weekens the mixture for the lambda sensors and as a result richens up the fueling.

Also running at a lower rpm helps if you load up the engine. Basicly walking speed use 2nd rather than 1st. That way its all loaded up and smoothes things out massivly.

If all else fails there is always a powercomander and a dyno run. But to be honnest i have only ever done that when more fun is required ;-) And just one last thought you have checked that the throttle balanceing bungs are there and not missing. If these have fallen off it will run like a bag of nails.

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Deleted Member @ 09/07/2014 22:31  

Thanks for reply Stuie, and to others that messaged me.

After reading various forums on 1200 RT's GS's, I took the step of purchasing a "Booster Plug " (please note I have no affiliation to Booster Plug other than being pleased with the product, for which, I paid the full amount) Well despite how bad the bike was, the booster plug cured 75% of the problem. But today I took the bike in to have the fault code reader put on it. I actually took the Booster plug off for this so that it was back to standard. The throttle balance and idle settings were checked and adjusted. Riding the bike afterwards I noticed immediately a vast improvement. That was about 2:00 in the afternoon, when I rode it again tonight it was not quite so good. But still a lot better. So I will put the Booster plug back on again and see how it goes from there.

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Whatsisname? @ 10/07/2014 22:41  

Booster plug works by telling the ECM that the air temp is cooler than it is so there fore running the engine on cold weather settings

After a while adaptive settings will correct this and it will run rough again untill reset it all and refit the plug again.

The only way to cure these engines is to set up properly. Ohh I did also forget to mention the tappets. As with every thing else on the r12 valve clearances have a massive effect on the running.

If you get it set up spot on and running nice and sweet then and only then it's time for tune up mods. Using quick fix snake oil fixes only masks your issues and costs you money.

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Deleted Member @ 11/07/2014 07:21  

Apparently from what I have read on the Forums the adaptive settings don't override Booster plug. Unlike some quick fixes that are just a fixed resistor, Booster plug gives variable resistance over the full range.

Although I am a mechanic, I find with the bike as I do with the car, that electronic aids are needed to complete certain procedures. Hence my limited amount of work on my own vehicles nowadays. ( The usual H-y--s manual clause, take it to your local dealership ) and being a mech I know that the Technician will jump on the Bike blast it down the Dual carriageway, on which, it is perfectly OK, come back and say " Yea they all do that mate, is this your first BMW ? they do take a bit of getting used too" (er, no it isn't "Mate")

The above was an actual event by the way, on my second BMW Bike. I was a BMW car tech, not bikes. When I have put a few miles on the Booster plug, I will post an update.

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Whatsisname? @ 11/07/2014 09:34  

Ooooh, that told you @Stuie!

Perhaps you aint been riding tractors for long enough??!! **chuckle**

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Lindsay @ 11/07/2014 15:35  

Oh dear, is "that" the way my post came across. It wasn't meant to. Sorry Stuie. I am only too pleased that someone is bothering to be of help.

But that's how the designer of the Booster plug explains it. I am just trying it out.

I am trying hard to cure the problem, and there is no easy fix, and I was interested if someone else has had a problem with 1200RT's. Also I am not happy, as you might have guessed ! with certain dealerships, Who treat customers as if they are total idiots. Which is why I am reluctant to take it in to a dealership and get told, " yea characteristic of 1200's mate " or "yes, well until we have done a 20,000 mile service on it there's nothing we can do "

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Whatsisname? @ 11/07/2014 18:19  

Taken another look at my post, and I still can't see where it would come across as anything but a friendly reply. I wasn't being a know all about being a mechanic/technician. And the Quotation in Brackets (er, no it isn't "Mate" ) was my reply to the Technician in question, because I didn't like being called Mate, not a remark to Stuie.

I think maybe someone is stirring things up ?

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Whatsisname? @ 11/07/2014 18:46  

No not stirring it, sorry whatsisname? Stuie n me are partners n i was winding him up! Sorry, i have a habit of putting my foot in it... Eek!

**puts head down n walks away despondently**

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Lindsay @ 11/07/2014 20:17  

Linz young lady your going to get such a spaninking 8-D

Dont worry whatsitsname no offence taken.

The bmw oilers are bit or a love it or hate it engine tbh.

To my down fall im addicted to them. I have had 1100's 1150's and 1200's. I have despatched far to many of them as a courier over the last 20 years.

There all slightly differnt but the 1200 is definatly the rougher running of the family. Its definatly an engine that lives on revs rather than the old1100 and 1150 which thump away from just above tick over.

Although they are a little rough low down it shouldnt be nasty and the should still tick over sweetly. Almost like a sowing machine.

Get the tappets set spot on (always from cold) four nice new plugs and a clean air filter with the throttles balanced and it should sing along...however do make sure the balancing bungs are in good nick. They have a habit of falling apart and going missing. With one of these gone it will pop fart and back fire all over the place and run like its about to let go some thing expensive.

Another thing that can cause a missfire is a dodgy ignition switch. There can bus controled so a simple bypass wont work unless you get he resitance across the cuircit right (trips out he imobiliser is resistance is incorrect) these have a habit of corroding as water drips down through the barrell. Its easy enough to remove the switch and check it for corrosion internaly its just two micro switches. But there not cheep. Its the one part i would by gen and new rather than used.

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Deleted Member @ 11/07/2014 21:33  

OK Linz you are officially forgiven. Actually, I did guess afterwards that that might be the case. Thanks for that Stuie. If you look at my profile you might be able to guess why I'm a bit sensitive !! and it's been one of those days unfortunately, and the last thing I want at this stage is to upset anyone.

To be fair to the BMW tech, (Sort of). BMW's do take a bit of getting used to after a VFR. But I want to persevere with it. A couple of weeks ago after coming back from Poole bike night I was ready to get rid of it. But today I put a 110 miles on it, and it was behaving quite well. It is a great Bike and maybe I am getting used to it.

So I WILL take your advice, and do some work on it myself. and go through the things you said. Thanks again


P.S. My username is an old joke at my expense from many years back.

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Whatsisname? @ 11/07/2014 22:39,,,might be worth a read

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ninjaflump @ 01/09/2014 20:17,,this is the one im lookin at for the gsa,,,john

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ninjaflump @ 01/09/2014 20:19  

No actual boxer twin experience; but as a mechanical engineer considering the dynamics of the engine layout and modern requirements for economy and emissions control, getting one to run smoothly must be like balancing on a knife edge. One man's 'vibration' is another man's 'character'. If smoothness is a priority for you, then trading for something with more cylinders may be preferable? <ducks and runs!>

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Richard T @ 02/09/2014 13:27  

Just an update. I don't have a problem with the bike any more.I cured the problem completely. How did I cure it? I wrote it off by hitting a Deer.!!! Don't bother with the "Oh deer" jokes i've heard them. ??

I now have a GS 1200, and it's perfect. No rough running probs.Great in Traffic. So! Onward and upward!!!

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Whatsisname? @ 22/10/2014 10:56  

Bloody hell mate thats a bit extreame!

Must admit i went a simular route, ie wrote off my RT and went out and bought a GS.

Your right the gs is one hell of a good bike, i love mine.

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Deleted Member @ 22/10/2014 21:25  

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