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>> No. 4734 Anonymous
6th May 2022
Friday 6:43 pm
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Hello again, bikelads.

One of you mentioned in an old motorcycle thread that you had a big BMW bike and I have now joined that club.

It is honestly the most comfortable bike I've ever had out on A roads and motorways, but also the most top heavy and unforgiving at slow speeds. I'm only a bit under 180cm but still find I can only just about tippy-toe the bastard when I need to.

Thinking of maybe trying to lower the seat a bit in the future, but might be redundant for such a big old lump of a bike (170kg or so).

Any tips for slow riding in the city? When will I reach that zen state of never coming to a complete stop?
Expand all images.
>> No. 4735 Anonymous
6th May 2022
Friday 7:13 pm
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Well done. Fantastic bikes. You'll get a lot of jealousy from the other biker lads, because BMW are such good bikes - try and remember that smugness when you're paying the service bills. The comfort is part of why they're so good, both the seat itself and the riding position (and the aerodynamics) - other bikers will tell you that BMW riders have fat arses, but the truth is those ergonomics are why you can ride it for six hours and still walk around afterwards, while the Honda/Yamaha/Ducati lads are moaning about their bike/arse/wrists after two.

I am 176cm, and can barely touch the floor with both feet, but you'll already know that bikers don't use both feet and you soon get used to the tippy-toe feeling.

It takes a long time to be confident filtering in the city. The few tips I can give you are that it takes a long time, but you'll have a magic day where you get to work/whatever, and realise you didn't actually stop moving, even at red lights, and didn't touch the ground since you left home. I'm sure you're doing this at high speed - think a long way ahead, concentrate on every single car, lorry, bike, pedestrian and cyclist you see in front of you - every single one, you should be WIRED to the tits - I liken it to a very intensive video game, where you only have one life.

Someone will try and kill you every day - only the lorries have the excuse of not being able to see you, all the others can. In a built up area, slow down way before before you see a junction, or a stop light and learn to filter, and be confident when you have to cross the white lines and (briefly) ride on the other side; don't get tempted to filter through two lanes of traffic if you can - go on the outside. If you're finding it top heavy and unforgiving its because you're zig-zagging too much (ie stay on the outside and filter back into the middle of the lane if you can't filter through) and you're going ever so slightly too slow - just a couple of miles faster and that feeling goes away.

Bleib sicher Bruder.
>> No. 4736 Anonymous
6th May 2022
Friday 10:04 pm
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Dude that's pretty fucking light.

I would suggest getting some cones, heading to a car park, and re-doing the slow speed drills you presumably did when you passed your Mod 1. Keep the revs high, use the clutch to modulate speed, and use the rear brake for a bit of extra stability.
>> No. 4737 Anonymous
8th May 2022
Sunday 10:16 am
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It's actually over 200kg wet with a full petrol tank etc., but looking into it more, you're quite right: that is light in the general range of touring bikes.

I suppose what I meant is it certainly felt heavy to me after not riding for a few years. I did my test on a 600cc in 2018 and probably need some time to get comfortable on it. Dragging the rear brake certainly helps a lot at slow speeds.


Brilliant post and very much appreciated. The quality of the design dawned on me the other day when I did 50 miles and felt like I'd just taken it to the shops. One thing I did notice is that my hands were feeling the vibrations after a while -- anything I can do about that?
>> No. 4738 Anonymous
8th May 2022
Sunday 10:50 am
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Hyperpro do a suspension lowering kit that'll knock 40mm off the ride height. Relatively cheap and a doddle to fit.

If you're having issues with harshness, the first thing to check is the tyre pressure - it's really critical on bikes and a few PSI can make a big difference to the feel.
>> No. 4739 Anonymous
8th May 2022
Sunday 11:29 am
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>Any tips for slow riding in the city? When will I reach that zen state of never coming to a complete stop?

Your instincts are to try and manhandle the bike like a pushbike, hence your concerns about getting your feet down. The trick is to use your leg solely as a kickstand to stop the bike from tipping over. All of your forward momentum and directional control comes from the bike.

The geometry of the steering means that the bike will naturally stabilise itself under throttle unless you disrupt that balance. It doesn't matter if the bike has quite a lot of lean angle when you're stopped, because the bike will pull itself upright as soon as you move off. Look where you want to go, stay relaxed, trust the inherent stability of the bike in motion and the rest will come naturally.

>> No. 4740 Anonymous
8th May 2022
Sunday 12:17 pm
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>One thing I did notice is that my hands were feeling the vibrations after a while -- anything I can do about that?

You mentioned you haven't rode a bike for a while - these will be physical issues on your side, and in a few weeks/months will have disappeared. You're probably feeling a bit of a tired neck, some tingling in the hands. There is a natural tendency at first to lean too far forward and actually put too much weight on your hands - it's a core body strength thing - at the same time, if you're too upright, the wind will buffet your head and you'll find yourself thinking about getting a bigger windscreen - don't do that, just practice more.

Incidentally, this is why the BMW RT is the king of all bikes - people complain it doesn't have much character, quite clinical in a way, but it is ruthlessly efficient and very very fast. The seat is much lower, the windscreen is much bigger and the angle of it is electrically adjustable. It means you can adjust the bubble of air you sit in, to the point that the airflow is going correctly just over your helmet - there is a joke among RT riders that when its in the correct position, you could probably smoke a fag while riding along. These ergonomics (and how quick it is) is why its the most popular police bike in the world. I intend to buy one when my wife isn't looking.
>> No. 4764 Anonymous
6th July 2022
Wednesday 9:20 pm
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A big thank you to those who offered a bit of advice and encouragement.

I'm now fully in control of the bike at slow speeds and rarely ever feel the need to try to put both feet down. It's mad how, psychologically, the bike now seems "small" and manoeuvrable.

I'm travelling about 80 miles per day on it for my commute. I've comfortably hit about 90mph, driven it through busy city centres, filtered through traffic, and also stalled and dropped the bastard in my garage (damage now repaired). I've never been so in love with a vehicle, and had entirely forgotten how much I enjoyed motorcycling.

The tingle in my hands were mostly down to giving the poor handlebars the deathgrip. Now that I'm not feeling the same level of nerves, my hands and shoulders are more relaxed and I'm not getting all the engine vibrations.


Great post. The engine is 100% doing the work now, and I realise that my urge to manhandle the bike came from not feeling in control in first gear. In my defence, most reviews on the F800ST seem to criticise that narrow biting point and the gear box more generally (a reviewer on MCN said the first gear felt like second), but now everything very easy.

I'm now practicing getting more lean into my corners and trusting the physics of the bike to keep me off the floor.

I really can't express enough how happy it makes me to ride every day.
>> No. 4765 Anonymous
6th July 2022
Wednesday 11:14 pm
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I'd offer you a thumbs up emoji, but I'm pretty sure that's a bannable offence. Anyway, happy riding m8 and try to keep it shiny side up.
>> No. 4766 Anonymous
7th July 2022
Thursday 1:39 pm
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