The Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) display on my G650GS Sertao started screaming at me this morning. It appears that the battery on the rear sender unit has depleted and needs replacement.
I purchased this third party TPMS monitor for the Sertao as it did not come with one from factory. The built-in TPMS on my R1200GS had saved me a few times and warned me of a tire puncture before the tire turned truly flat. But as with most BMW stuff, it was severely over-priced. Back when I had to replace the TPMS sender unit on the R1200GS, it was $155 per piece. And it doesn’t even include installation! The GS-911 helped saved me a few dollars and I could easily program the 1200GS to talk to the newly replaced sensors.
Last ride for 2020! And what a challenging year this has been! Still in Phase 2 of the Circuit Breaker here in Singapore, 4 of us gathered to do an around Singapore ride on this last Sunday morning of 2020, and a photoshoot session to end off the year.
I was resisting installing a set of crash bars on my Sertao. Reason being, the R1200GS used to be my primary bike, and the Sertao – my “dirt bike”. And I wanted to keep the weight low on the Sertao.
Now that I no longer own the R1200GS, the BMW G650GS Sertao is now my “primary bike”. For dirt fun? I have my DR(e)Z! (More on that another time…)
I loved the looks of the SW-Motech crash bars! I’ve looked at AltRider’s, looked at Touratech’s, considered the cheap Chinese-made “Touratech lookalikes” sold on AliExpress, and even bought the Givi ones some time back (sold them away later). I think there’s something real beautiful about the SW-Motech’s design.
The BMW G650GS has a dry oil sump design and has its oil reservoir situated where the fuel tank typically resides. And in typical BMW fashion, it requires a speciality tool to remove the oil cap. Yes, the bike’s accompanying tool kit does contain a multi-use wrench that would also open the oil fill cap. But accessing the tool pouch was an inconvenient 4-step process – top box removal, panel removal (using key), seat removal, then tool pouch removal (which is a pain due to the really tight space the tool pouch is situated).
So, for garage maintenance, and to encourage periodic checking of engine oil levels, I’d prefer to have a tool readily available.
The ones on eBay cost easily over $20. Just for a dumb piece of plastic – $20?!! So in true DIY fashion, after some measuring, I realised that any 22-23mm hexagonal tool should do the job. I dumped the idea of 3D-printing it – as it’ll likely cost as much as the $20 eBay tool for such a low-volume production.
I missed the cruise control on my R1200GS. Now with the 1200 gone, and the G650GS being my primary bike, I was searching for ways to introduce a cruise control-like feature on the otherwise low-tech bike. Until I came across the Kaoko Throttle Stabilizer!
The Kaoko isn’t a real cruise control. It simply adds some adjustable friction to the throttle to keep it in place. The solution is simple and elegant. And dare I say, not as “dangerous” as it sounds. It doesn’t lock the throttle at all, but merely introduces friction to hold it in place. Even with the additional friction employed (ie, cruise control ON), it was still relatively easy to ease off on the throttle merely by twisting it forward. Granted that it won’t “spring back”, but nothing a little twist of the wrist can’t handle.
It’s been almost 3 months since we’ve all been virtually imprisoned due to the Covid-19 pandemic. And I’ve not met my riding buddies in that same period of time. And since this was the first weekend since the Singapore government lifted the lockdown measures preventing social gathering, we took the chance to go for a ride!
We all desperately needed a ride. Of course, being good citizens and residents of Singapore, we kept the group size to a maximum of 5.
Since I had to stay home due to the Covid-19 circuit breaker measures in place, and that I couldn’t ride, I decided to do a little bit of bike maintenance. I’ve not replaced the brake fluids on my G650GS Sertao since I purchased it about a year ago. And now with the DRZ in my stable, I thought I’d take the time to get the brake fluids replaced.
Since it was easier on the DRZ as there’s no ABS pump to deal with, I started with the Zee. Connected the bleeder valve kit to the brake bleed valve and started pumping away.