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Gearbox, mileage and battery comments

Fellow Oilheads-

First, I wanted to thank several of you for your comments re. my notchy
gearbox question from a couple weeks back. The long story short
consensus here is (a) attempt to pre-load the shifts and (b) nature of
the beast with less than 17K on the odometer . .  Appreciate the help.

Commenting on the questions re. mileage. On my 2000 R1100R which has a
Techlusion 259 "chip" I was seeing a fairly consistent 36-38 mpg with a
50/50 parkway and stoplight kind of driving. I suspect with the colder
weather, my mileage will go down somewhat from that.

A new QUESTION- any way to access the battery for checking the water
levels on this bike without pulling the gas tank? It really seems like
an inconvenient way to do periodic battery maintenance.

Lastly, I appreciate the camaraderie with this group. I'm a member of
another BMW digest board where there are severe egos, periodic p*ssing
contests, and psychological squashing of newbie questions . . . You guys
are a safe haven!

Ride safe,