Motorcycles I Have Ridden Part VIII

#408 – 432  (Change from Cycle Barn employment to Ride West BMW)

Dave Preston:                                           Motorcycles Ridden Log

As of January 1st 2010:                                  8 owned –  399  tested = 407 total

#408             BMW K1300S  demo                            ZV93483

  • Color  is wet ash and does not inspire
  • BUT does not show dirt either
  • Demo ridden from 2040 miles to 2500 and beyond
  • Terrific dash – all the info you need, and none you do not
  • ABS, traction control, AND suspension adjusts 9 ways
  • 175 hp
  • Heated grips, self cancelling signals
  • Tire pressure read-out can be a reassuring safety feature
  • Insanely expensive $1900 Akropovich slip on

#409             BMW K1300GT                                               Demo

  • Particularly nice candy maroon paint
  • Full instruments, and easier to read than K1300S
  • Ohmygod power of course – sound is about the same
  • Adjustable windshield would be nice in really foul weather
  • Bigger bags of course
  • More front end feel than I would have thought
  • Best sport tourer ever
  • But – just loses out to the K1300S for me
  • 6 months later –   I think I prefer it!

#410            BMW F800ST                                                            Demo

  • Lovely champagne paint
  • Belt drive
  • I like the right hip fuel filler
  • Leg room too little for me
  • Truly dumb turn signals would take a long time to get used to
  • Engine does not impress – until you rev it
  • Very tall gears, so you have to work it into the upper rpm ranges
  • Flimsy kill switch?
  • Impeccable handling
  • Center stand
  • Probably a terrific first bike
  • Instruments good  (gear indicator, etc) but not as comprehensive as the larger models

#411             BMW F800GS                                                  Demo

  • MUCH more like it!   Off white paint with black spoke rims – yum
  • Akrapovic pipe helps enormously
  • Man-sized ergos
  • Really a hard seat
  • Center stand
  • Flimsy kill switch?
  • Still dumb turn signals but self cancelling over 30mpg
  • Feels like a hooligan all the time – but also could go anywhere
  • Twin disc front brakes
  • Chain for off-road use
  • Could be my only bike for ten years easily
  • Great good fun!

#412    BMW R1200 GS                                             Demo

  • I can see why everyone loves these but me – not so much
  • Insipid blue paint
  • Screen rattles at low speed
  • Did not want to go into first
  • Handles really well – especially corner entry
  • Akrapovic exhaust – but I could not tell that
  • Dumb turn signals
  • Shaft drive and a center stand
  • Comfy seat

#413   BMW  G650 GS                                               Demo

  • Snarky red paint
  • 650 single – and it does shake a bit
  • Comfy ergos – down in the bike but with lots of leg room
  • “normal” turn signals and heftier kill switch
  • Center stand and luggage rack
  • Single disc and chain drive

#414   BMW  F650   GS                                              Demo

  • Same 800cc engine as the F800GS but different cams and FI
  • Why?
  • Single disc
  • Insipid gray blue
  • Center stand
  • Flimsy kills switch
  • “650” (800cc) engine is a corker in this application also
  • Light handling – one disk is probably enough
  • Chain drives seems an anachronism
  • Better instrument panel with gear indicator
  • Less of a luggage rack
  • Heated grips and center stand

#415   BMW GS 1200A                                               Demo

  • Not a motorcycle, but a tank!
  • Sheer size and height is intimidating
  • Turns in well –  fully equipped
  • Dumb turnsignals a turn-off
  • I am not man enough for this bike!

#416   BMW R1200R                                        Demo

  • Looking cool in graphite matt paint
  • Not enough leg room – but had the short seat!
  • Needs a small windshield
  • Motor is adequate
  • Lower seat height than a Speed Triple, and turns in better – but will lose out everywhere else.
  • Rode it HARD later at a cornering school at Pacific Raceways and loved it!
  • Terrific feel on the brakes

#419   BMW S1000RR                            demo

  • Utterly iconic – a game changer
  • Size of a 600 CBR –  turtle fur throat tube a bad idea – could not move my head
  • Rain mode a great place to start – sport mode even better
  • Reminds me of several bikes at the same time – Triumph 600, Kawasaki ZX12R,  Muzzy Raptor – and better then all of them.
  • NO storage space
  • No fuel gauge
  • No heated grips
  • Gear indicator
  • Mode switch
  • Various track day timers, shift lights, etc
  • Shifting and ride are both buttery smooth
  • Graphite black one has cool magnesium look swingarm
  • THE bike of 2010

#420   2010 BMW K1300S                               orange (“my” bike)

  • Hard to believe…
  • Smokes on start after being washed
  • Comfy, fast, orange, great brakes, orange, lots of tech, orange
  • centerstand, tinted screen, and saddlebags
  • Akrapovic maybe the demo it was on was ready to be sold
  • Most capable bike ever
  • 24k if I were purchasing it
  • Terrific tank bag
  • Slighly rubbery clutch on take-off
  • Can have a bit of trouble finding neutral
  • No cruise control
  • Probably the best bike I have ever ridden

#421   2009 BMW 1200 LT   (new – Keith Thye’s company bike)

  • Initially massive beyond belief
  • Hydraulic center stand AND reverse
  • How does key fob work?
  • Windshield adjustment very effective
  • Only 5 speeds and that’s all it needs
  • Low speed handling is a marvel
  • Easiest large bike to turn around ever
  • Comfy – once you hunch your butt back

#422    BMW R1200 GS     with ADV rider accessories                            Demo

  • I am starting to like these!  Hmmmm
  • Off white paint is OK on these
  • Impressive farkles that add safety, crashworthiness and utility
  • Handles really well – especially corner entry
  • Stock exhaust?  Looks like it, but sounds terrific
  • Dumb turn signals also
  • Shaft drive and a center stand
  • Comfy seat

#423   2010 BMW R 1200 R/T                 demo  ZW18081

  • Pale blue does not appeal, and yet
  • Awesome practicality and Swiss Army knife utility
  • Seat adjusts to two heights, plus a low seat (-2”)
  • Stereo radio dial is a cool piece of engineering
  • Electric windshield, and heated grips AND seat
  • Amazing handling
  • Huge bags – enormous range
  • Terrific mirrors in the fairing below the bars
  • Shaft drive, 6 speeds, center stand
  • Bars appear narrow –  very nice
  • Cruise control – huzzah!
  • Friendly personality
  • Passes the 10 year test very easily.

#424   2006   BMW K1200S                    #8409           used bike  $10,990

  • Smoked silver looks cool, with lighter silver wheels
  • Different and more engaging engine character
  • Dumb turn signals
  • Optional (?) center stand
  • 20k
  • Bar risers make it really comfy
  • LED tail light sets off warning light
  • Other than the turn signals – I prefer it to the K1300!

#425   Kymco scooter demo

  • 500cc and CTV clutch makes a very utile machine
  • Top box can hold two large bags of ice – barely
  • Leg space seemed kind of cramped

#426             BMW F800GS                              South Sound Demo

  • Just like ours – but it counts as a test ride!
  • Pitch dark, rain, riding to the motel – low fuel light on –  ah the good times.
  • Conti TKC 80s!
  • Knobbies – squirmy!

#427   BMW  F650   GS                                              South Sound Demo

  • Same 800cc engine as the F800GS but different cams and FI
  • Really cool iceberg silver metallic paint
  •  “650” (800cc) engine is a corker in this application also
  • Light handling – one disk is probably enough
  • Chain drives seems an anachronism
  • Better instrument panel with gear indicator
  • Less of a luggage rack
  • Heated grips and center stand

#428             Paul Bullard R 1200 GS

  • Humongous padded seat – Rich’s
  • Filthy, but then it just did Sasquatch
  • Almost 40,000 miles
  • Missing right mirror gave me a start
  • Tippy toes, but capable for sure
  • 2nd ride – now with panniers and top box –  even tippier, and in the rain, and on a new front tire!

#429             BMW F 800 GS  demo # ZVO 2555

  • Once again, weird tall feeling – not Contis but different – Pirelli Scorpion Trails –  not knobbies at all but felt really tall
  • Orange and black is nice
  • Over 2000 miles but still feels stiff and jerky – or is it me?

#430             ‘06 Yamaha FZ 6  used bike        17+ K miles                     $4,990

  • Nice candy maroon pipe
  • High black twin pipes –  why?  Styling only –  good in gloss black
  • Instrument panel trickier than needed
  • Red pinstripes on gloss black wheels are a nice “custom” touch
  • Very easy to ride – light clutch – 11k redline engine
  • Comfy and seems to be eager for adventure
  • Crash bungs – appears not to have been dropped
  • Tires OK  – front is 75% gone
  • very impressive!

#431             2008 BMW K1200 GT                 ZN47662   $15,200

  • Amazing bike – gorgeous in dark metallic gray
  • 28,000 and a bit miles
  • Fresh engine  (why?)
  • Grabby snatchy clutch when cold
  • Heated grips and seat
  • Standard windshield, which is smaller than the one used now
  • Does not appear to get dirty
  • Favorite bike of the year
  • We have two others – one with ghost checkered flags on the fairing that is exceptionally cool

#432             2011 BMW F 650 GS           New Demo   #ZW91591

  • Lava orange looks good on this bike as well
  • 800cc twin with the power of a 650 – but
  • Tractable and extremely easy to ride
  • Heated grips a real asset
  • Seat is rock hard so far – but it is the LOW SEAT version!
  • Brakes are bedding in, but are scary at first – no feel or power – I sill want double discs
  • Light and agile – great for commuting
  • Chain drive and no center stand are downers
  • Love the right side “hip” fuel filler
  • Transmission is terrific
  • Greatest errand running bike ever!



About david

I am a 69 year old motorsports nut who lives in Bothell, Washington. After a 31 year career as an English teacher, I segued into a self-created job in the motorsports business. Now retired, I was involved in customer relations for Ride West BMW in Seattle, after almost 10 years of similar work for the Cycle Barn MotorSports Group. I have been married forever and have two grown children. I own, at the current time, a Triumph Bonneville T 120 , a Triumph Thruxton, a Fiat 500S and a VW Tiguan. What else would you like to know?
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