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Discussion Starter #1
Monday I picked up a new to me 2005 R1200GS. For those unfamiliar with these (2004 - 2006) GS had servo assist brakes. Basically they are power brakes and they work amazingly well. BMW abandon this technology in 2007 as it was problematic and went back to traditional ABS braking systems.

The owner was upfront with me and told me before we even started to negotiate price there may be a problem with the servo/ABS systems the idiot lights were on. So I went in eyes wide open and sometime somethgin as easy as flushing the system will correct it.

Got he bike home and started tearing it apart to access the servo unit.
SB2.jpg


Tank off, ABS funnel installed and set to work on the front brakes. Purged a bunch of molasses colored braked fluid out of the servo unit and it was found to be operational. For the record it is reported that if the brakes are serviced at 10,000 mile intervals or once a year failures are greatly decreased.

Moved to the rear brake and the servo units will not even activate. It is DOA.

SB3.jpg


Here's the brake fluid that was pulled from the servo unit. Keep in mind this also has some clean brake fluid mixed in so it actually looks a little better that what really came out.

So based on the looks of the old brake fluid it seems the brakes were last serviced maybe around the end of last ice age.

So now I have great form brakes, residual rear brakes and limited choices. Here's where the BMW bashers will get all wooded up. A new servo units it about $3,000...….boing.

SB4.jpg



But fortunately there is an $20 alternative. Simply remove the servo/ABS unit and go back to traditional brakes. Separate the brain box from the servo unit. Fab and install a 4-1/4 x 4-1/4" a back on it to cover up the electronics and seal with gasket sealer or silicone caulk and zip tie in its original location. Lug in the loom and Bob's you uncle.

Sure I've lost the ABS but I've had many bikes without ABS and lived to tell the tale adn ABS isn't worth $3,000 to me. Actually there is a button on the handlebars that I can toggle the ABS off.

As long as ABS isn't a deal breaker do not be afraid of theses bikes. You can get them for a song and IF the servos system is non-operational ou get them even cheaper and you have a very inexpensive alternative to bypass the system.


SB5.jpg
 

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I had and liked the servo brakes on my 1150. It was one of the things that didn't break on me. Last ride before I sold it.
IMG_0300.JPG
 

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Monday I picked up a new to me 2005 R1200GS. For those unfamiliar with these (2004 - 2006) GS had servo assist brakes. Basically they are power brakes and they work amazingly well. BMW abandon this technology in 2007 as it was problematic and went back to traditional ABS braking systems.

The owner was upfront with me and told me before we even started to negotiate price there may be a problem with the servo/ABS systems the idiot lights were on. So I went in eyes wide open and sometime somethgin as easy as flushing the system will correct it.

Got he bike home and started tearing it apart to access the servo unit.
View attachment 275539

Tank off, ABS funnel installed and set to work on the front brakes. Purged a bunch of molasses colored braked fluid out of the servo unit and it was found to be operational. For the record it is reported that if the brakes are serviced at 10,000 mile intervals or once a year failures are greatly decreased.

Moved to the rear brake and the servo units will not even activate. It is DOA.

View attachment 275540

Here's the brake fluid that was pulled from the servo unit. Keep in mind this also has some clean brake fluid mixed in so it actually looks a little better that what really came out.

So based on the looks of the old brake fluid it seems the brakes were last serviced maybe around the end of last ice age.

So now I have great form brakes, residual rear brakes and limited choices. Here's where the BMW bashers will get all wooded up. A new servo units it about $3,000...….boing.

View attachment 275541


But fortunately there is an $20 alternative. Simply remove the servo/ABS unit and go back to traditional brakes. Separate the brain box from the servo unit. Fab and install a 4-1/4 x 4-1/4" a back on it to cover up the electronics and seal with gasket sealer or silicone caulk and zip tie in its original location. Lug in the loom and Bob's you uncle.

Sure I've lost the ABS but I've had many bikes without ABS and lived to tell the tale adn ABS isn't worth $3,000 to me. Actually there is a button on the handlebars that I can toggle the ABS off.

As long as ABS isn't a deal breaker do not be afraid of theses bikes. You can get them for a song and IF the servos system is non-operational ou get them even cheaper and you have a very inexpensive alternative to bypass the system.


View attachment 275542
You're a smart fella! I'd NEVER had been able to figure that out! Seriously...well done you!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
You're a smart fella! I'd NEVER had been able to figure that out! Seriously...well done you!
I can only take credit for following the step x step direction drdata provided on the big ADV Site :)

I had and liked the servo brakes on my 1150. It was one of the things that didn't break on me. Last ride before I sold it.
I like them too. When they in are in good repair no brake is better. Truly one finger braking.
 

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I remember when that system came out. Very impressive. Just don't try to use the brakes when coasting with the motor off. Braking is servery compromised.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I remember when that system came out. Very impressive. Just don't try to use the brakes when coasting with the motor off. Braking is servery compromised.
Yes its always interesting rolling a servo assist bike off the back of the truck. I put them in 1st gear and feather the clutch as I ease it back off the ramp.
 

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My 2003 R1150RT had them...I serviced them every other year using precise instructions with pics originally posted on BMWST.COM by Mama Hoon and Jamie.
They were still working perfectly when I sold it last year. Awesome system.....but it did require some TLC👍
 

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Ah, Mama Hoon. I remember that group. Their heads would explode at some of the normal conversation here and die a violent death in the Trooper area.
And now back to the breaking brake issue...
 

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My K1200RS came with two short brake pipes formed into U-shape with nipples. They were emergency ABS bi-pass tubes which installed up near the fork neck.
I never left home without them ... but never did need them.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
How 'firm' is the brake lever without the servo assist?
When do you mean?

1. Bike is turned off and servo unit intact?
2. Bike is running servo unit operational?
3. Bike is running servo unit is not or only partially operational?
4. ABS/servo pump has been ejected and back to traditional brakes?
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I will take door 3 Alex^^^^^^^^
Even with the servo unit non-operational the lever/pedal still has a fair amount of "feel" but not like when the servo are working and you lightly pull the lever in with one finger and the lever feels like you pulled it against a immovable object.

The problem is the servo boosts the pressure to the caliper so when non-operational the master cylinder is pushing fluid from the MC to the servo then from the servo to the caliper. Whereas traditional brakes push fluid from the MC to the caliper. The servo is also a big volume of fluid in comparison to what the caliper or MC holds. So the MC in stead of moving a few milliliters of fluid (with traditional brakes) the MC is now having to move 5 or 6 ounces of fluid contained in the servo reseveiour. Its just not big enough to do that amount of work w/o a boost.
 

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Any way to plumb the servo out of the system? Or perhaps get master cylinders from years that do not have 'boost'?

Last go-round nearly bought a used loaded 2015 R1200 RT. Loved my old 1983 Airhead. But local dealer sucks, and just way too many things that can go wrong. So got an old (2003) FJR1300 with ABS and pretty much nothing else. A whole bunch cheaper, way better power, not quite as comfortable. And I think I can fix nearly everything on it.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Any way to plumb the servo out of the system? Or perhaps get master cylinders from years that do not have 'boost'?

Last go-round nearly bought a used loaded 2015 R1200 RT. Loved my old 1983 Airhead. But local dealer sucks, and just way too many things that can go wrong. So got an old (2003) FJR1300 with ABS and pretty much nothing else. A whole bunch cheaper, way better power, not quite as comfortable. And I think I can fix nearly everything on it.
That's exactly what I did. The brake lines go from the MC to the servo unit then to the caliper. I bypassed the servo unit and now the brake lines go from the MC to the caliper. I could have left the ABS/servo unit physically in the bike but it about 10lbs of dead weight so It got heaved overboard.
 

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This "ectomy" has been done quite a few times on the BMW Whizzy Brakes models. All with success.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
So not content with flipping the front brake junction fitting and contorting the brake lines to get them to work or the alternative spending $15 on premade jumper so I showed'em whos the boss. I spent $19.00 on a bubble flaring tool and $9 for a 36" section of 3/16 brake line. Ha, take that!

Really almost anytime I set out to roll my own it cost significantly more that just buying but I like to make my own. This time oit only cost double so I got away cheap!

6-1/4: section of brake line with the ends trued up. The bent in a "U" with a tubing bender with one end 1/2" longer than the other. Slipped the brake fitting on and flared both ends. Then reduced the radius of the "U" even further around a ballpeen hammer then bent the tag ends against a piece of 1/2" PVC.

F1.jpg




F2.jpg




F3.jpg
 

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So not content with flipping the front brake junction fitting and contorting the brake lines to get them to work or the alternative spending $15 on premade jumper so I showed'em whos the boss. I spent $19.00 on a bubble flaring tool and $9 for a 36" section of 3/16 brake line. Ha, take that!

Really almost anytime I set out to roll my own it cost significantly more that just buying but I like to make my own. This time oit only cost double so I got away cheap!

6-1/4: section of brake line with the ends trued up. The bent in a "U" with a tubing bender with one end 1/2" longer than the other. Slipped the brake fitting on and flared both ends. Then reduced the radius of the "U" even further around a ballpeen hammer then bent the tag ends against a piece of 1/2" PVC.

View attachment 275687



View attachment 275688



View attachment 275689
Wow! I thought I had the CoVidDIY bad.
 
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