BMW F Series Archives - Wunderlich America Complete Your BMW

William’s Tech Tips – Steering Head Bearing Change

Welcome to William's Tech Tips!   Need to replace your steering head bearings?  Here's what you do... The condition of the steering head bearings drastically affects handling and safety. If the bearings are too loose, a dangerous head shake can occur. Often, if you tighten the bearings, the steering will feel notchy, and it will be hard to keep a straight line, especially at low speeds. This can be due to the outer bearings actually having notches worn in, where the bearing rollers make contact. It can also be caused by hardening of the grease, where the stiff grease prevents the bearing rollers from rolling smoothly. Very often, it’s a combination of both, and the steering head bearings need to be replaced for optimal and safe handling. This is a job that you can do yourself with the proper tools. When changing the steering head bearings on your BMW, the most difficult part is removing the old bearings without doing damage to the motorcycle. Here are some tips and suggestions for this job: [Refer to a repair manual for detailed information, torque specs, etc. This is just a generic overview and not intended to describe the entire procedure.] Begin by removing the handlebars, the front wheel, and the fork assemblies. You may also need to remove the front brake assemblies, depending on the model, or maybe you can leave the brake calipers dangling or temporarily secured somehow. Depending on your particular model, you’ll need some rather large sockets or wrenches, [...]

F to G: What’s changed about the single-cylinder G650 GS?

One of the questions we often are asked is on the difference between a certain pair of motorcycle models. You probably already know what we’re talking about, even if you didn’t read the title. In 2000, BMW introduced the F650 GS as a replacement for the original F650 Funduro from the late 90’s. The new model received an updated version of the old 652cc single-cylinder engine, except now with dual overhead cams and producing 50hp. The biggest changes over the Funduro, however, were probably the new location of the gas tank, now under the seat, and updated body styling. The “false tank” up front stored the oil tank, the airbox, and the battery. In 2004 the engine was updated again with twin spark plugs that boosted the power output as well as the fuel economy. It was a great small motorcycle that offered something much more nimble and easier to ride on the trail than a full-size R or K-series bike. However, the original F650 GS was discontinued in 2007 and was replaced by a whole new line of twin-cylinder F-series motorcycles that carried a similar name but were vastly different. The single-cylinder GS motorcycle was such a venerable hit with small-bike motorcycle tourists that it wasn’t gone for long. In 2009, BMW re-launched the motorcycle as the brand-new BMW G650 GS. This new 650 is truer to its Funduro heritage with the same single-cylinder, Rotax-based, 652cc engine. In G-series trim, however, the engine produces an additional 3hp. In the [...]

By | June 29th, 2015|BMW F Series, BMW G-series|1 Comment

DIY: Easy Belt Drive Service for your BMW F800 ST

The belt-drive system on the BMW F800 ST is one of its most unique features. Though BMW has typically used chain drive technology for the F-series motorcycles, for the ST, the belt drive is the logical choice. Not only is it much cheaper and easier to maintain, since it doesn’t require the same cleaning, lubrication, or adjustment; it will also last longer, run smoother, and run quieter. Plus, since the belt does not suffer from chain lash, the drivetrain will respond like a more costly shaft drive. These qualities make it perfect for a lightweight sport-tourer like the F800 ST. Today, we’ll take a look at servicing the drive belt on one of these unique motorcycles. It’s fairly straightforward if you’re handy with tools. Remember, you’ll find your replacement BMW F800 ST belt drive, plus all the other parts you could ever need for your BMW F800 ST at Wunderlich America. Removing the Old Belt Begin by removing the 3 Torx bolts that secure the foot-peg assembly. As you remove the bolts, take care not to lose the 3 plastic washers that sit between the assembly and the rest of the motorcycle. Once the bolts are out far enough they will just drop out to the ground. Make sure you catch them. Up front, remove the 3 Torx bolts that secure the pulley cover to the engine In the rear, remove the lower belt cover from the swing arm. There is only a single bolt. The rest is secured with [...]

By | June 17th, 2015|BMW F Series, Wunderlich|2 Comments

57th Mid-Rhine Off-road Challenge

Racing in the mud In spite of his Enduro road tires, Dirk Thelen turned in an impressive performance on his Wunderlich F 800 GS in the 57th Mid-Rhine Off- road Challenge. This is the granddaddy of all motorcycle events and took place for the 57th time in 2009. With 175 participants there was a pretty big starting line-up with large numbers of spectators. We're talking about the “Mittelrheinische Geländefahrt” (Mid-Rhine Off- road Challenge). The dynamic MSC Kempenich Motors MSC invited all comers to the Brohl Valley on the edge of the Eifel, including the four-times Enduro champion Dirk Thelen. Wunderlich had prepared a special BMW F 800 GS just for this exciting event. Coming up to the race, the mood in Sinzig was one of quiet confidence. Rider and bike had been optimally prepared; everything seemed in A1 order. All that was missing was the right rear tire; that shouldn't be a problem – or so we thought! The nearer it came to the start of the competition, the more hectic became the search in commercial outlets for a reliable and race-fit original 17-inch rear tire. The team wanted to start the race with kit as close to stock as possible. The FIM (Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme), the race's highest arbiter, finally forced the issue by accepting none of the proposed tires for the 17-inch rear wheel. So the people from Sinzig opted for a Metzeler Karoo, which is an Enduro tire exclusively for road use – a courageous decision [...]

By | June 3rd, 2015|BMW F Series, Competition, Wunderlich|0 Comments

A Brief History of the Classic BMW F650 Funduro

The BMW F650 and F650 ST were launched in Europe in 1993 and then brought to the United States as  slightly updated models in 1997. The standard dual-sport F650 is commonly referred to as the “Funduro” to distinguish it from other versions and later derivatives of the F650 platform that followed over the next decade. The other bike, the BMW F650 ST “Strada” was intended primarily for street use versus the dual-sport nature of the Funduro. The two are nearly identical mechanically, but the Strada features a smaller 18-inch front wheel. Both of the F650 bikes were jointly designed by BMW and Aprilla, was built by Aprilla in Italy and powered by a carbureted single-cylinder 652cc engine from the Austrian company Rotax. This was the first single-cylinder motorcycle from BMW since the mid-1960’s, and also the first chain-driven motorcycle ever offered by BMW. The engine produced 42 hp, and the power was delivered through a 5 speed transmission to a 17-inch wire-spoke rear wheel. It was paired with a 19-inch wheel in the front. Both the Funduro and Strada were discontinued in 2001 and replaced by the BMW F650 GS and ST, respectively. If you have a Funduro or Strada, we at Wunderlich have everything you need to maintain and customize your BMW F650. We carry a full selection of filters, tools, fluids, gaskets to keep those fluids in place, and all the hardware you need to keep your bike on the road for a long time to come. Our [...]

By | March 24th, 2015|BMW F Series|0 Comments

What exactly is the deal with the F650 GS?

In the past few weeks I’ve fielded some questions from a couple of my friends about the F650 GS. With the start of riding season coming up, there are a few motorcycles on the market that have caught their eye. The problem is that several years back BMW made it a little confusing for the uninitiated to figure out exactly what’s going on with the F650 GS. First, let’s take a look at the original F650 GS. This machine, when introduced in 2000, was the successor to the original F650 Funduro from the mid-90s. It’s equipped with a 50hp, 652cc, single-cylinder, water cooled engine with 4 valves and dual overhead camshafts. In GS trim the F650 received a few new features. Probably the biggest change was moving the fuel tank under the seat. The “false tank” up front stored the oil tank, the airbox, and the battery. The body styling was also overhauled to a more modern design. Unlike the Rotax power plant in the Funduro, the engine production for the F650 GS was moved entirely in-house. The F650 GS was pretty advanced for a small-engined motorcycle of the time. It had a computer-controlled fuel injection system, a catalytic converter, ABS, and a tuned airbox. In 2004 the engine received twin spark plugs that improved the fuel economy and power output. It’s a great small motorcycle and perfect if you’re looking for your first bike or something that isn’t as big or bulky as a full-size motorcycle. Unfortunately, BMW discontinued [...]

By | March 17th, 2015|BMW F Series|0 Comments
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