BMW R65 Info: Mods/Maintenance on My Bike : R850R
My First Time: R850R
Date: Sat, 21 Aug 1999 01:44:02 -0700
Subject: My First Time
Friday morning, I dropped the R65 off to have new (softer) springs put
on ... and left the shop with an R850R loaner. Maroon.
[Aside: there were 3 WSP dropping off *their* bikes for service also]
This was the First Time I'd ridden a bike other than my R65, other than the
MSF honda last August. I was a little nervous. But, like a lot of things,
it seems that the thinking about it is "worse" than the event. ;-)
I told Paul Baker on Wednesday that I wanted an loaner on Friday -- I'd not
asked for one before. Had always done "the shuffle" or got service on a
Saturday and waited. But No More! [course, we also had to get past the
unstated but obvious "you're a small woman and thus need a small bike"
1) My feet actually "touch" better on the R850R than the R65 with the
custom seat. Surprise and confidence booster.
2) The R850R feels very light and is very well balanced. I think it's
actually easier to ride (keep upright) than the R65. This is how the telelever
forks are advertised, right?
3) OTOH, I dislike the sidestand. The "loop" that you need to snag with
your foot to engage the sidestand escapes my boot sole, for some reason,
and I kept snagging the shift lever instead. No way will I snag it with my heel.
4) The "off" switch for the turn signals doesn't "fit" my hand size
(my thumb was not happy). In fact, for the first few turns my ride was
"jumpy" because I couldn't keep the throttle steady _and_ turn the signal off.
You have to hook the right thumb under the lever and pull "up" ... ugh. Yeah,
I got the hang of it by the end of the day, but I'm not sure it could ever
5) I really liked twisting the throttle and getting torque at lower revs and
the boost in horsepower. I feel a need for more speed. ;-)
6) The riding position is *very* different. Far more "upright" due to different
bars. I'm not sure I like riding this "straight up." I didn't ride enough to
make a firm judgment (only 60 miles or so) but my inclination is to think I must
be more of an "RS" rider. I like to lean forward *some* but I think the "S"
(or gooz's ducati) is too far forward for me. ;-) Understand, though, I haven't
*tried* an S yet!
'course, I've been told you can change the bars. ;-) Can you change the turn
signal controls, too?
7) I think this bike would be very comfortable on long rides, especially
mainstream highway ones (well, after getting Rich to mold the seat to my bottom).
Not having ridden in twisties sitting "upright" I don't know how that would feel.
But the bike "turns" well -- or seemed to, I didn't push on anything but straights
and sweeps. ;-)
So there's a sigh of ... relief? ... something .... I know that the next time
I have a chance (or make a chance) to ride another bike, I've a little box of
confidence to step onto.
I had been thinking for some time that the R850R would be the "next BMW" that
I bought. I'm not so sure, now. Definitely need to Try Different Makes, Models.
No rush, though, am still very happy with the little beemer. In fact, riding her
tonight, I was much more aware of things like feet and body position on the bike,
body angle, head/instrument panel geometry, etc.