I agree - BMW luggage is cr@p

CandyMan_ZA

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I have been following the threads on the quality of the BMW luggage with keen interest over the last few weeks. I purchased the BMW top box (with back rest) and panniers and hoped that BMW would have got it right and designed a reliable set of cases. was I wrong ! The paniers do not fit securely no matter how much you try and 'adjust' the bolt, there is always some movement when pulling on them. I have no confidence in using the panniers when I intend doing a bit of offroad riding. I thus only use them on road trips. The top box has never been totally secure either, it has always had a little 'left / right' movement and to anyone riding behind me it is obvious there is a lot of movement while riding, it bounces around all over the place. Today I proved that the top box is cr@p ! It was not heavily loaded ! All I had in it was a map, a cannister of tyre weld, some cable ties, a rainsuit, an extra puncture repair kit and of course my Nikon 35mm camera. Fortunately my Nokia 6600 was not in the box otherwise I would not have been able to post this picture (sorry about the quality). Yup, the darn top box just fell off ! There are no broken mountings at all, we (some of my buddies on their Africa Twins who have never had a top box ever fall off) were riding down some farm roads when I hit a pothole in the road, somehow the box came off the mounting bracket and went a bouncing down the road, it broke open and the contents including my 35mm camera was all over the road. The strange thing is the 'red' locking lever was still locked after the fall, I had to unlock it to put it back on the bracket. I have no idea how it could have come off, puzzles me ? Now to throw my toys out my cot and see if BMW will replace it, wish me luck...

Kevin
R1200GS-WP
 
A similar thing happened to me while on Salisbury plain earlier in the year - it had been fine for several miles of dirt tracks but popped off when I hit a big dip at about 30mph. It didn't cause as much damage as yours seems to be, partly because it flew up and hit me on the back of the head then somehow stayed balanced on the passenger seat until I had slowed down somewhat.
On mine the locking lever was also still closed - however if you pull up and down on the rear of the box when it is attached you can see how the base flexes a little - I put it down to a combination of that and the fact that the locking latch (that fits into the small slot on the mounting plate) is on a spring and can be fairly easily pushed in by hand.
Since then paranoia has set in and I always have a bungee over the top of it :)
 
just got back from my BMW dealer, the box will be replaced no problem, but this doesn't fix the problem, it is a rediculous design to start with, I'll have to modify the box with an extra bracket or use tiedowns to keep it in place. Talking about tiedowns, while at BMW I was told the same thing happened another R12GS owner but he had bungee elastics holding his box in place when it came loose, the box slipped off the bracket and ended up in the wheel arch and locked up the rear wheel, fortunately he managed to keep the rubber side down.

Kevin
R1200GS-WP
 
Do you have the support bracket that attaches to the rear frame above the brake light and then to the back of the topbox carrier?

Bonjour.:(
 
> Do you have the support bracket that attaches to the rear frame above the brake light and then to the back of the topbox carrier?

yup, sorry you can't see it in the pic but it is there, the one that a BMW dealer has to cut the plastics to make fit, can you believe it, they actually have to take a jigsaw or airtool and cut/grind two holes in the plastics to mount this support bracket.

Kevin
R1200GS-WP
 
I bought a Givi carrier and box for mine as the BMW box dit not seem big enough and you cant get two full face lids in it.

When at the dealers the other day they were impressed with the Givi product, it has two little recesses in the supprts to allow them to fit around the plastic unlike the BMW kit.

Not the easiest kit to fit but looks great and the Givi boxes are always quality. Givi after sales is fantastic also, if you need any bits & bobs phone them up and they often as not will send them to you FOC!
 
On the last thread about top boxes falling off I asked this question but got no reply: On the underside of the box there are two circular rubber things - these compress when the box is mounted and provide tension that holds the box firmly against the mountings.

In theory, if these rubbers were missing, I reckon the box might be loose enough to pop the mountings and fall off.

Can anyone who's had a problem check if these rubbers are still in place please?

FWIW, I've had no top box problems, so far.
 
The Hepco Becker top box has a very simple but effective fitting design. It latches very securely onto a simple and inconspicuous rack and feels totally secure.

The only downside is that it isn't braced in any way so I never put more than the recommended 5kg into it - may make up a brace for it in the near future.
 
I disagree with the statement 'BMW Luggage is Crap' - I've a R1200GS with 2.5K miles and BMW 1200 panniers - They are not brilliant but they are not crap either. They do the job - the centre pins on the pannier holdings did need tightening up post delivery and about 800miles but BMW and CW told me they would.

I have the BMW tank bag for the bike too and thats fine too - very waterproof and I like the curves of the bag and bike...

sorry to hear of your experiences CandyMan and Clive - I'm not a top box lover so I would'nt go there but I am interested in the auto jettison feature.
 
Had BMW luggage on the R100 (75.000 miles) 650gs, R100GS (for a short time as changed to Touratech for trip to Oz) and now 12GS. Had very minor problem on the RT when an integral cable hadn't been fitted at the factory but, thats all.
 
Let me tell you what annoys me most, before I bought the R12GS I owned a F650, I bought it new in 1997 and sold it this year, I had it almost 8 years, the only items that were ever replaced was tyres, chains and sprockets, the usual items. I had no problems whatsoever in all this time, a fantastic motorcycle. Let me get to the point, notice in the attached picture it has a cheap no-name-brand topbox. I rode 78 000km's with this topbox, did many offroad excursions, even a 7 day trip through Namibia. I have loaded this box with extremely heavy items at times, and strapped a tent and sleeping bag to it, it never so much as indicated any problem, it sure as hell never "fell off" ! And it cost me R200 (about £20) go figure...

http://home.worldonline.co.za/~kevinvb/pics/r1200gs/F650.jpg

Kevin
R1200GS-WP
 
Three week old 1200 and the Topbox comes off. I was on a gravel road and rode into a hole and off comes the box. I was lucky the rider behind had backed off due to the dust other wise he would have hit the box.
The catch is not up to it. All 1200 topbox owners should be strapped to the bike until BMW fixes the catch. This is no joke
 
kiwiAdventure said:
All 1200 topbox owners should be strapped to the bike until BMW fixes the catch.

Could be a little tricky when you have to pay for petrol ;)
 
If your BMW panniers have movement when locked in place it may not be the adjustable mushroom bolt which is to blame.

Take off the pannier and close the side lock at the front, then try to twist it gently but firmly parallel to the side of the pannier. If it moves at all, open the side lock and look at where it is attached by four rivets. One of my panniers had only three rivets and was consequently able to pivot upwards on the upper mountings. A one millimetre movement at this position seems like 10mm at the top mounting. The other one with four is rock solid.

Now when you take it back to your dealer for replacement check the new one for the same problem. The replacement I was offered had the same fault.

Clearly that fourth rivet must be tricky to install, it certainly is not easy to see that it is missing from the outside and it is completely hidden on the inside..
 
Strap'em down!!

Here's a thought......:D
 
TerryM said:
If your BMW panniers have movement when locked in place it may not be the adjustable mushroom bolt which is to blame.

Take off the pannier and close the side lock at the front, then try to twist it gently but firmly parallel to the side of the pannier. If it moves at all, open the side lock and look at where it is attached by four rivets. One of my panniers had only three rivets and was consequently able to pivot upwards on the upper mountings. A one millimetre movement at this position seems like 10mm at the top mounting. The other one with four is rock solid.

Now when you take it back to your dealer for replacement check the new one for the same problem. The replacement I was offered had the same fault.

Clearly that fourth rivet must be tricky to install, it certainly is not easy to see that it is missing from the outside and it is completely hidden on the inside..

I've just checked mine and it has only three rivets!!!!
 
kiwiAdventure said:
I've just checked mine and it has only three rivets!!!!

It will be interesting to hear what response you get from your dealer?

Seems to me that what we have here is quite a good design for many users, such as myself, which is not backed up by BMW quality control at the subcontractor who makes or assembles the panniers. But I am going to complain until they fix the problems.
 


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