With the 1200GS still in for the final drive (now in pieces on the bench at Woodson), I packed up the F650 last night. A quick stop at the dealer and I grabbed my GPS and mount off my bike, plus my SPOT messenger. I got home and was able to quickly mount them to the bars of the F650 and then rummaged around the attic to find the standard F650 seat (instead of the low seat ususally on it). I've found that it's comfy with the std seat, but the low seat makes my knees hurt in about an hour of riding.
I got the bike farkelized which included soldering up a new power cord for the 2820 and swapping out the windscreen to the "bikini" (i.e. a small plastic piece that only covers the instruments). A quick spin around the block and all is good. The bikini screen makes it MUCH quieter by eliminating the turbulent air.
Sporting a pair of new but VERY INEXPENSIVE Shinko 705's its set to hit the road this afternoon. I'll probably cut out of work early and take the scenic route to Detroit. I'll report on the tires when I get some more miles on them. The 705 is their new Dual Sport tire (75%on / 25%off) and has gotten pretty good reviews on ADV Rider but there has been some cracking of tread blocks on heavier bikes like1150 and 1200GSs. F800, F650, KLR650, and all the myriad of other lighter bikes have been reporting they are an excellent value in tires.
Initial comments on the 705s: 1) F650 Fitament. I had to go to a 110/80-19 up front since 100/90-19 is not an available tire size. The 110/80-19 is the same as the 1150/1200GS and the change in size is common on F650s. The rear 130/80-17 was available. 1) Fit and finish look fine. A bit of mold flash, but that's pretty common. They look pretty well made - I've seen Continental TKC80s that looked much worse made (mold halves not aligned, lots of flash, etc.) and they are a premier tire with the price to match! 2) It took very little weight to balance them, which means the construction is pretty consistent. Interestingly enough it took about the same amount of weight in basically the exact same spot as the pair of Anakees that came off. My guess is both tires were pretty much consistent, and the balance is mostly due to the rim and valve stem. 4) Noise: So far they are much quieter than the Anakees. That's my big complaint about those tires - they howl when they get worn down worse than TKC knobbies!. These seem pretty darn quiet. 5) Cost: Well these are in a totally different price bracket than anything else out there. While it's usually about $250-300 for a pair of tires these didn't even qualify for free shipping from Chapparel becasue the two tires combined were $98. I had to throw in a new tube to get the free shipping upgrade. Perhaps in a few months I will say they were only worth their price but my initial results, and what I've researched on them, seems to indicate they are an amazing bargain.
Based on the couple problems I've seen on larger bikes I'l probably NOT buy these for the 1200. They are not aggressive enough tread anyway, but are moreso than say Tourances.... more after I put down some miles this weekend.
Fort Wayne, IN
2006 BMW R1200GS - Rock Red
2003 BMW F650GSL - Yellow
1992 SHO MTX - Arrest Me Red
1993 SHO MTX - Green Racecar