Had one of those milestone birthdays and my wife gave me a gift to remember, a 2013 BMW R1200RT - 90th Anniversary Edition bike. The bike is still on some container ship coming from the motherland to NYC Port, due there on 02/18/13 and then at Lone Star BMW in Austin about a week to ten days later. I'll followup with pictures once we pick it up.
I finally got a chance to take the bike out on its first maiden run; a short 85 mile ride. I've had the bike put back together for a few weeks now, but every time I'd take it out the carburetor float bowls would start leaking, usually within five miles of taking off. I would just pull over and take the bowl off, let some gas run through the needle valve and pop it back on. Good to go for another four or five miles!
Of course, the inside of my gas tank is rusty and it sitting at the painter's for over a month sure didn't help. I know I've got to treat that tank, but it seems no one sells the solution I'm looking for in South Texas (it's a water soluble thing called Evaporust). Well, it finally dawned on me that I should just put in a pair of small and inexpensive fuel line filters. I picked up two of the smallest I could find at Autozone for $4.99 each, cut the fuel line, and popped them in. Took less than five minutes. My brother said he did the same thing years ago with his Honda CBX (six cylinder) and said that after the filter clogged the bike stalled on him on some lonely highway. He just punched a hole in the filter with a screw driver and kept on riding.
We left Saturday morning for a breakfast run to San Isidrio, Texas. Those fuel line filters worked like a charm. About 35 miles down the highway I opened up the throttle a bit and went from a pedestrian 65mph to 85.3mph according to my Garmin GPS. I know it's accurate because it's been certified by radar in the Texas Hill Country. According to the local Sheriff in Camp Wood he said he clocked me at 65mph in a 55mph zone and I had my cruise control set right at 65mph, on the Garmin not on the speedometer.
The bike ran great, smooth and once it warmed up it shifted smoother and just ran better. It idled perfectly at 1,100rpm and should do much better once I get the carbs tuned. Of course, the bike feels much taller and nimbler than my Harley Ultra Classic. I did notice a little wavy (loose) feeling in the rear section as I held the bike at 85mph. I'm not sure if that was because of the wind or some mechanical issue. At 75mph it was totally smooth; at 65mph it was smoother, very quiet, and felt like it could stay at that speed forever.
Once I got home the only noticeable problem was some gear oil weeping from the gear shifter shaft entering the transmission. Maybe that's due to my replacing all the fluids with synthetic oils and perhaps I should go back to the old dino oils. I'm ordering the new seal and that should take care of that problem. I also felt that the saddle just wouldn't do on a day-long ride so I may look at getting a Corbin saddle to replace the custom job on there now.
Conclusion: Yes, I'm very happy with the bike and just want to keep tinkering with it.
This is a short review of the Wolfman waterproof bag.
On my last long tour I used a SAC bag that was given to me by a friend. Actually he gave me two bags but one seems too small and the other too large. I used the small SAC bag on my last tour. I had two problems with the bag 1) it was too small to hold what I couldn't fit into the saddle bags and 2) the bag is water resistant - not waterproof. I was carrying my sleeping bag and thermarest on top of my seat along with the SAC bag. Well... that was only good until the first rain. A friend carried my sleeping bag for the rest of our tour. The size of the SAC bag is 16 inches long and 10 inches diameter.
Thus the reason for the purchase of the Wolfman bag. I looked at several bags including the BMW Roll 2 but the BMW bag is currently selling for about $250. That's too much for me. The wolfman looks very good and cost me $103.99 with free shipping. I got it through Amazon but the shipping company was Rocky Mountain. I went with the medium size bag. The official name on my invoice is "Wolfman Expedition Dry Duffel Bag medium yellow". One thing I like about this bag is that it comes with lots of straps. I think the total number of straps is 6 straps plus the hand and shoulder straps.
I put a few items in the bag that I will be carrying in this bag because they don't fit in my saddle bags - for example my sleeping bag and pad. I also threw in a pair of riding pants, waterproof pants, under pants, camp pillow, and a pull over shirt into the bag for the purpose of taking these pictures. This bag comes in three sizes. All are about 11.5 X 11.5 inches and come in lengths of 20, 24, and 28 inches. Like I said - I went with the middle size. By the way, my sleeping pad fits in the bag without having to fold it in half.
The bag straps on to my bike much better in this position
Here's the weird thing about this review... I've never used it on the road let alone in the rain. But having said that I am sure that it will not leak water. It's just too well made. Look at the top photo and you can see that it does not even come close to sitting on the bags. This size fits perfect even if you mount it lengthwise (see the photo above). Comes with the straps that you need but I will be using my Rok straps to tie it to my bike. I will update this review if I need to after I field test the bag.
Another piece of advise... don't fold the opening like I did in the photos above. It fits and seals better if you fold the opening in small folds. The straps on each end keep the fold closed on the ends. The top straps keep it closed on top. The straps on the seat in the photo above are used to strap the bag on to your bike.
TSP rating for this bag = 8. (1-poor, 10-best)
Update: Rode in rain and my stuff stayed dry! In addition to the rain you see in the video above we rode about 400 miles in rain. I had zero problems with water leaking into the Wolfman.