At 67,000km, my BMW R1200GS clutch switch failed. Symptoms include 1) not being able to start the bike while in gear and 2) not being able to switch riding modes while the bike is in motion.
You see, for either of the above 2 to work, the ECU must know that the clutch lever is FULLY pulled in. The R1200GS that comes with cruise control and/or shift assist pro use a set of dual microswitch instead of the typical single microswitch. The first part of the switch senses that the clutch lever is being slightly pulled in, and the second part senses if the clutch lever is fully pulled in.
I was searching for a replacement lightbulb for the G650GS. Now that I’ve been spoilt by the superb LED headlamps of my R1200GS, the stock bulb that came with the bike was a little too dim for my liking. And so I went on to do some research for some replacement lightbulb.
The G650GS use a single H4 55/60W bulb for both dipped and high beams. I wanted something brighter, and I wanted something street legal. And so I immediately dismissed all the high-powered “off-road only” bulbs. And since the road regulations in Singapore are pretty strict with headlamp modifications, I dismissed the HID and LED conversion units too.
I have previously used a set of Ring Automotive’s Xenon Ultima in one of my car which I have since sold. Ring Automotive promises a whopping 120% more light. I recalled that while it was appreciably brighter than the stock headlamp bulb, the longevity of the bulb wasn’t great. It blew way faster than I expected it to.
We couldn’t get enough of dirt riding fun in Ulu Choh, and so we planned to head back there again. This weekend, we decided to attempt some of the trails instead.
I found a GPX trail in Wikiloc called “UCDP Novice Route”. Novice, right? Should be easy peasy… right? We were so wrong!
Arriving at Ulu Choh Dirt Park, we were a quirky bunch of riders that somehow look misplaced in a dirt park. Yes, the G650GS and the Yamaha XTZ with knobbies are somewhat at home here. Then there are the heavy adventure bikes – the R1200GSA and the Tiger 800 XCX. The Diversion with its street tires was obviously not the most appropriate machine here. And then there’s the cutesie bunch – the small, ultra-lightweight class – a 36year-old Vespa, a probably about as old Honda C90, and the midget Honda Grom, all gathered for some off-road trail fun. But what all these bikes have in common, is a rider with an adventure spirit and a can-do attitude.
We loved the dirt so much that we’re back in Ulu Choh! This time, we head there in the morning – while it’s still cool. Last week’s visit in the peak of the noon’s heat was a bad idea. I was overheated, dehydrated and throughly exhausted. And this time round, we went as a bunch of learning noobs and had some really silly fun!
Yup! My first road accident with the BMW R1200GS. I was travelling along the a dual-lane, single-carriageway (a single lane for each direction of travel) road when a car dashed out from a minor road without checking if it was clear of traffic. He was making a right-turn, and presumably started moving off after only checking for traffic coming from his left.
I tried to avoid him by evasively swerving slightly to my right (not too much – there was oncoming traffic from the other direction!), sounded my horn to warn him, but to my complete surprise, he still came dashing out! [FACEPALM!]
Today, we head to Ulu Choh Dirt Park. I’ve heard a lot about the place, but have never been there. So, it’s pretty exciting. And since my BMW G650GS Sertao had dirt tires fitted, I took that instead of the R1200GS.
Tada! Here’s the result of my amateurish $30 paint job on my new-to-me BMW G650GS Sertao! A quick coat of Rustoleum Universal Metalic paint for the base. Turned out not too bad, but it was obvious that it was an amateur’s work.
So I decided to get a small bottle of metallic copper / gold paint and brushed it on with a rag to give it that “brushed on” look. Also serves to camouflage the imperfections of the spray can job.
The Sertao paintwork now has a “dirty” look to it. And what better way to treat it than to take it out into the dirt trails today!
And so we begin our long ride home. While there was no cargo space from Chiang Mai to Bangkok, we were hopeful that there was space available from Bangkok to Hat Yai. Thing is, we didn’t want to risk riding into Bangkok and getting stuck in the world-famous traffic jam only to find out otherwise. So as we headed south, we turned into Nakhon Pathom – a stop just after Bangkok and tried our luck.