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Re: R1100S questions

Hello Dave,

From: "Dave Blumgart" <DBLUMGART@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>

> Every newsgroup/mail list has its subjects that incite strong feelings
> and ignite flame wars.  I'm curious what engine oil people use,
> synthetic (specifically red cap Mobile 1) vs. alternatives, but on other
> groups oil has been an incendiary issue.  How's it work here?  Can this
> be brought up?

In 1997, when I got my first BMW (a new '97 328 convertible, maxed-out,
custom ordered), I decided I wanted to protect it and make it last a 
I spent a lot of time researching oils. I mean *excessive*. I even spoke
with a Mobile engineer by phone who thought I was some big-wig, and who
spent over half an hour talking oils with me. Here is a summary of what I
learned then, and since:

 o Premium "conventional" oils are very good. This includes properties
   such as lubrication (and various sub-properties of that), durability,
   cleaning agents, residual protection against rust, etc.

 o Synthetic oils are rarely purely synthetic. They are typically a dino/
   synthetic blend.

 o Where synthetic oils really shine over dino is (a) temperature
   extremes, and (b) load extremes. If, for example, I was towing a
   trailer through the Nevada desert with my car, that would be a good
   argument for using a synthetic oil. Similarly, if I'll be using my car in
   the arctic circle in winter, there's another good argument for synth.

 o Motorcycles rarely have a "need" for synthetic oil. Even racing bikes,
   as there are dino oils formulated specifically for racing. If you ride
   the desert more than occasionally, two up, with loaded saddle bags,
   consider investing in synthetic oil.

 o Airheads and Oilheads (your R1100S is an Oilhead), have
   reputation for lasting for ever and a day. Putting on 300,000 km
   on an original engine, with original valves, is not unreasonable (though
   you're probably due for a valve job by then). And that's using dino.

 o An Oilhead takes a long, long time to fully run in. On the order of
   40,000 km (no, that's not a typo). During this time, the engine will
   become progressively smoother, oil consumption will decrease,
   and in many cases, horsepower increases slightly due to better
   compression. If you're committed to using synth, consider doing
   so only after this period.

About flaming and strong feelings:

My observations are that this list has a collectively friendly tone to it,
and flaming is pretty rare. Perhaps flamers seek out a larger audience to
feel better about themselves after lambasting someone. I suspect that
opinions run as strongly here as elsewhere, but I am pleased to say that
it's not political, dangerous, or uncomfortable here on this list.

> And are there other detonators I should avoid triggering?

Yeah. If you get into a discussion about how Canadians say "aboot" instead
of "about", or that they all say "eh?", you're likely to get an earful ;-)
Otherwise, the weather is pretty good on The Oilheads List. Heck, even
Airhead riders and Oilhead riders get along without animosity, and without
arguments about what constitutes a "real" BMW motorcycle.

- -Steve Makohin
 '01 R1100S/ABS
 Oakville, Ontario, Canada