"Gather 'round, lads.... gather 'round"...
Burt Lancaster / The Crimson Pirate (1952)

Around the 1st or 15th of each month, when I deem you are worthy, we put out our cheesy newsletter to inform the masses as to what's happening in the BMW K12RS/GT/S/R world and of course... Pirates' Lair. How else are you going to find out? If you want to subscribe and have these sent via e-mail to your home or office just let us know at pirate@acelink.net .. otherwise you'll get 95% of it here. Why only 95%? Because I tend to tell the brutal truth as I see it on many issues/products and while I don't mind spewing "my opinion" into your home, office or cell, I have no desire to slam, insult, or malign any company, individual, competitor in public.. unless they blatantly deserve it.

While I do try to add a little humor in every newsletter, some of my language may offend the mild mannered or meek, amongst us. If you are offended easily I suggest you look elsewhere for your written info-tainment. So it is written.. so let it be done....

The Latest Cheesy Pirates' Lair Newsletter: April 2006 Issue

Fellow esteemed and quasi-esteemed motorcyclists.... ..A famous (and slightly edited ) movie moment to start the day.....

As Ilsa and Victor walk across the runway to board the plane for Lisbon, a tear sparkles in Ilsa's eye. Rick is left standing alone on the edge of the runway. Renault chastises Rick's romanticism and 'fairy tale' sentimentality for giving an unwilling Ilsa back to Victor. Renault promises him that he will be arrested. Yet Rick still holds a gun in his pocket - until the plane leaves:
Renault: Well, I was right. You are a sentimentalist...What you just did for Laszlo, that fairy tale you invented to send Ilsa away with him. I know a little about women, my friend. She went, but she knew you were lying.
Rick: Anyway, thanks for helping me out.
Renault: I suppose you know this isn't going to be very pleasant for either of us, especially for you. I'll have to arrest you, of course.
Rick: As soon as the plane goes, Louis.
At this time a determined Major Strasser breathlessly rushes into the airport hangar and is informed that Victor Laszlo is on the departing airplane.

Rick: "I was willing to shoot Captain Renault, and I'm willing to shoot you."
Strasser attempts to halt the plane on the runway - he runs to a phone to connect to the radio tower. Rick orders him to put the phone down as Strasser grabs the receiver. The Nazi leader pulls out a gun with his other hand and fires a shot at Rick - who must in self-defense shoot him. Strasser crumples to the hangar floor - dead.....
Seconds later a carload of gendarmes pull up. In the distant background, the plane is taxi-ing and turning on the runway. Five policemen run up to the amoral Capitaine Renault who announces climactically...
Major Strasser has been shot. In a tense moment, there is a long pause. Renault first looks at Rick and then back at the gendarmes
Round up the usual suspects.
Renault: Well, Rick, you're not only a sentimentalist, but you've become a patriot.
Rick: Maybe, but it seemed like a good time to start.
Renault: I think perhaps you're right.
Then, in the fog, they watch the plane ascend into the air for neutral Lisbon.
Renault: It might be a good idea for you to disappear from Casablanca for a while. There's a Free French garrison over at Brazzaville [in French Equatorial Africa]. I could be induced to arrange a passage.
My letter of transit? I could use a trip. But it doesn't make any difference about our bet. You still owe me ten thousand francs.
And that ten thousand francs should pay our expenses.
Rick (quizzically) Our expenses?
Rick: Louis, I think this is the beginning of a Cheesy Pirates Lair Newsletter

Renault. / Claude Rains .. Rick / Humphrey Bogart / Casablanca / 1942

News From The Two-Wheeled No-Spin Zone...!!

The 2006 Hill Country K12 Rally!! Saddle Up Pardner!

We're just two weeks from the 2006 Texas Hill Country Rally WooHoo!! Show up and you won't be disappointed.. I've been to them all and this one is my favorite..Wonderful roads, great food, and the always jovial Officer Sanchez to welcome you to the area. You'll find everything from Deals Gap twisties to wide open triple digit straights.. It simply doesn't get much better than this. What's really amazing is finding these world class roads right smack dab in the middle of Texas!! Who'd a thunk it. So.. are you coming or not?? "Are you gonna pull those pistols, or whistle Dixie?"

A special thx to all those involved in making this rally a reality. You know who you are. Look forward to seeing most of you there!! Look for me... (as I blow by you!!) ... I'll be wearing white.

---------------------------------------- ----------------------------------------
End of Days: Our First Product .. the K1200RS Protector Discontinued

Years ago when the earth was young and Saddam was still in power and gleefully torturing his own people, I bought my first BMW.. a 98 K1200RS.. Woohoo! The first thing I discovered was that nobody carried accessories for the bike. Since I couldn't buy what I wanted.. I designed what I wanted and after a few people saw my cheesy creations and requests started flooding in.. a business was born.

Our very first product was the K12 Protector. It's just a cheesy over-priced powder-coated metal screen hand-formed to fit in the lower RS/GT cowling opening, but it makes a big "visual" difference. I have sold thousands of these worldwide... but making them has always been a major PITA. I'd rather have a prostate exam by a coked-out Mike Tyson than produce them and now that the RS is out of production... I have a good excuse to stop making them. Bottom line.. Our last production run is in my hands (Silver Only) and there will be no more produced.. ever. Get them while you can or forever hold your peace.

---------------------------------------- ----------------------------------------

Product Review: Verholen K1200S Passenger Peg Lowering Kit

Took Amber for her first ride on the new K1200S a few weeks ago.. She's a great passenger. Doesn't care how fast I go.. always leans with me... is perpetually neutral back there. As she loved riding on the RS, we were both curious how the S would compare with the new Corbin seat. We instantly discovered that not only was she sitting 6-8" higher up than me, but her legs were painfully folded up onto the factory pegs. Also.. her boot came into direct contact with the 3000 degree exhaust canister!! Not good.

First thing we did was install the fully adjustable Verholen Passenger Peg Lowering Kit which for the most part solved 2 of the 3 problems. Install couldn't have been easier. Just remove the stock rear pegs and install them on the Verholen carrier, then install the Verholen carrier back on the bike.. or vise versa. Took me all of 10 minutes. Caution should be used in removing the factory pegs as there is a ball-bearing under spring pressure which makes the peg snap open and closed and if you aren't careful upon removal, that ball will shoot out and be lost until archeologists find it 200 years from now.

Now Ambers knees and long, sleek, sexy legs are stretched out and relaxed a bit and.. as the right side peg is moved out by a full 2" via a furnished spacer, her heel is now clear of my exhaust canister. The rear pegs are now infinitely adjustable. While she still says the bike is nowhere near as passenger friendly as the RS.. at least it's now tolerable to her female sensibilities. Her personal thumbs up.
---------------------------------------- ----------------------------------------
BMW K1200S / K1200R: Slip-On Specs

I finally got around to installing some slip-ons on my K1200S a few weeks back... As I had just about every brand in stock.. I tried them all on to see which one looked the best with my new paint. After a few hours of trial and error I/we decided on the CF Remus Revolution which hands down looked the best on MY bike which is ALL WHITE. While I had them all out and in my plundering hands I did some measurements... as to some.. SIZE MATTERS.

Slip-Ons for the BMW K1200S / K1200R
Factory Canister: 23 1/2" / with end cap 26"
Staintune: 20" / with end cap 22" / Claimed 10hp increase
Akropovic: 20" / with end cap 22" / Claimed 7hp increase
ZTechnik: 19 3/4" / with end cap 21 3/4" / Claimed 2.5hp increase
Laser Ti DuoTech: 19 1/4" / with end cap 21 1/4" / Claimed 5hp increase
Leo Vince: 19 1/4" / with end cap 21" / Claimed 5hp increase
Laser HotCam: 19" / with end cap 21 3/4" / Claimed 5.3hp increase
Remus Revolution: 18 1/4" / with end cap 20 1/4" / Claimed 4hp increase
Two Brothers C-5: 18" / with end cap 21" / Claimed 5.5hp increase
Two Brothers M-2: 18" / with end cap 20" / Claimed 5hp increase
Laser Power Cup: 14" / with end cap 17" / Claimed 9hp increase

---------------------------------------- ----------------------------------------

RKA Soft Luggage: Testers Wanted

After looking high and low (but enough about my drug usage) for an alternative for those criminally priced, ugly, sissy, foofoo, factory K1200S saddlebags I came across the RKA Soft Saddlebags from RKA Motorcycle Luggage. Not only do they have 2 versions that look sleek on the K1200S, cost hundreds less, and hold much more, but they come in a variety of colors. If they pass our anal testing we'll probably carry both the 56 liter expandable bag and a smaller 35 liter expandable SuperSport bag. Both sizes of saddlebags use wide hook and loop fasting system for easy on and off. Comfortable for your passenger and out of the way of high pipes or so they say. Looks like the retail price will be $175.US / 35liter & $200.US./ 56liter.

Just recently we received a few pair of bags that we are gonna sell at dealer cost in exchange for"honest" opinions as to how well they work, etc.. We are NOT looking for long-term testing.. Just a weekend's worth of riding and usage will do. As of this writing we have a few pair of the 56L bags in silver and a few of the smaller 35L bags in black. E-mail me if interested... and we'll provide dealer pricing, etc..

What's New In the K1200RS/GT/S/R No-Spin Zone

I should note that as the RS and GT have been discontinued, I receive less and less news of any new products for them.. I mention this as a few semi-loyal subscribers have accused me of abandoning our roots.. Not true.. I only report what's going on.. Don't shoot the messenger.. I will NEVER abandon the K1200RS crowd. It appears that the times.. they are a changin.' Deal with it. Also.. a special thx to www.K-Bikes.com , www.I-BMW.com, and www.BMWK1200S.com for the information & pictures I regularly pilfer from these chat sites..

Sliding forward during quick stops and not even using AstroGlide? Taking it out on your gas tank? Yikes!! If anyone out there in the real world is interested in tank grips .. Check these out at www.techspec-usa.com They offer two versions for the K1200S.. a Snake Skin version and a High Fusion Synthetic Rubber version (Precut Kit includes R&L Grip & Tank Protector) Price looks to be $49 and $45 disrepectively. Contributor , Tudor Popescu swears by them.

2. Tired of scuffing your gas tank panels with your knees?? Me too.. Here's an option to the rubber panels that the other guys are selling... Try TankSlappers I just installed a kit on my K1200S and it's exactly what I needed for under $20. Visually unobtrusive when on the bike...Install took me all of 10 minutes. They have kits for the K1200S, K1200RS, K1200R, R1200ST, R1200RT, and the new GS. They go on with H2O and the material is reusable.. meaning you can peel it off and reapply whenever your inner demons demand it...

3. Check out this fine extension shift lever from the German company Hornig. These will not harm your fine leather or python skin riding boots.

4. Wunderlich has a new tail light available for the K1200S and K1200R. It's looks like the name is the Triton 2 and comes with a full bank of LEDs... This plug-n-play system looks to be about $213.US and the lone importer is BMW of Santa Cruz County. How does it look?? Hmm.. Not bad.. different...but anything on the face of the earth looks better than that baboon ass looking abomination the Germans came up with..Why the Germans don't hire just one Italian for their design team is a mystery to me.

5. Speaking of tail lights for the K1200S..Clear Alternatives has a new Clear Lens Tail light with super bright LED's on the market.. These clear taillight housings are a direct replacement fit to the original stock K1200S and/or K1200R The units require no modifications. It's a plug and play... no resistors necessary, and (they tell us) brighter than any other LED in the market. They offer two versions.. LED and standard Red Bulb. . Cost is around $100 and $65 respectively.

6. also from Clear Alternatives.. News is that that they will soon have clear front blinker lenses for the 97-2001 model K1200RS . Up until 2 weeks ago the only source for these was Pirates Lair but they have since, we are told, discontinued them. Perfect timing? or a sure sign of End of Days?

7. Saeng has what looks like an inner windshield mounted rear-view mirror for the K1200S that attaches with glue. Hmmm. Their verbiage declares.. " Compact, rock solid and stylish...with Shield-Ulta Quick Scans you'll see a bigger, clearer view of the world around you…open lanes, merging traffic, or kids in driveways. Quick-Scans help eliminate blind spots. Optically pure convex lens has 3X the viewing area of smaller blind spot mirrors." If somebody buys and tries one of these.. could you let me know what you think?? For the life of me I can't see how it would work..

8. Want to hear the new K1200GT? Here you go: www.michaelbense.de/speicher/k1200gt.wmv Just screams for a Remus or Laser, doesn't it?

9. The American Machine Company.. the same guys that have been making both K1200RS/GT Peg Lowering Kits and Barbacks have just come up with a K1200S Peg Lowering Kit. It drops the pegs exactly 1" offering a little more leg room. They offer them for around $100 a kit and have them in anodized clear or black. The kit is just a simple bolt on.. No mods, brain drains, or foofoo exotic tools necessary. Contact Rick and Tom @ (717) 533 5678 or email them at amc5678@juno.com

10. BMW R1200RT Light Brackets for PIAA Driving Lights ..The long awaited Ezy-Mount bracket kit for PIAA 1100X and PIAA 004XT driving light kits is now shipping. Retail is $59.95. Call (800) 574-2440, FAX (972) 240-9210, and order online at www.dallasmotorcycles.com or email them at sales@dallasmotorcycles.com.

11. Legal Speeding Enterprises makers of the H.A.R.D. Radar detector units has some new goodies in the works including a waaaay cool thermo-formed plastic rain cover that fits over your Escort 8500 X50 (8500, 7500s, & 7500) It snaps together and provides room for the power and audio jacks. The top two programming buttons are even accessible. Unlike other radar detector covers I've seen which are huge, black, and fugly as hell.. these are clear and perfectly molded to the exact shape of the Passport 8500. They tell me that a second version is in the works for the Valentine One.

12. If the thought of bugs and debris clogging your K1200R oil cooler is giving you the cold sweats or causing impotence.. there may be a solution for you. There's a company called Bug-Guards for Beemers that has an oil cooler guard kit for your R. The K1200R kit contains a powder coated black, aluminum mesh screen that attaches directly to the oil cooler via Velcro and removes in seconds for cleaning. I received a sample K1200R kit, put it out in the field, and got this opinion from our tester..Sir CR Critcher, aka "beemerduc.
I am extremely pleased with the product and would have been glad to purchase it for my K1200R. "

Cost for the R kit is $29.95..If interested contact Gene Sweeney, Jr (the manufacturer) at 410.608.4972 EST or see their ad in BMWON magazine. He doesn't have a web site.

What's New at Pirates' Lair?

1. Woohoo!! Pirates' Lair Custom S/R Torque Arms are In Stock! Our in-house design replacement torque arm is absolutely stunning. Supremely sleek, the ultra light weight CNC'd aluminum arm is a simple bolt-on replacement for that piece of shite Germany stuck on us. Our arm, which blatantly features the Pirates' Lair logo, does NOT change bike geometry so there are no warranty issues. It's the same 415mm as the factory arm.

Install is chimp-easy ... removing two bolts on the bike and replacing your arm with ours using the furnished stainless steel low-head socket bolts. Truly worthy of the gods. We offer them in silver and anodized black. Fits the K1200S and K1200R. The question is.. are you worthy?

2. I just spoke with the people that have been producing our Clear Front Lenses for 1997-2001 K12's and they informed me that they will NOT be producing anymore.. None. They say our molds have gone bad and unless I want to buy new molds.. (a few thousand dollars.).. it ain't gonna happen.. Bottom line... We're sold out.. they are gone!.. I'll bet just about now you wish you hadn't been procrastinating.. Doh!.
However...You can dry dem crocodile tears... I recently heard of another company that is producing some. Those should be on the market in a few weeks..

3. Hallelujah!! Praise Crom !! We now have the long awaited Brake LED Kits for the K1200S and K1200R In Stock! If you've ever seen the RS version kits you'll probably agree that they are simply the best, safest, and sleekest way to light up your tailend of any accessory on the market. This little unit goes INSIDE of your factory tail light. Plug-N-Play. Pictures and video to come.

4. By the time this goes to press we should have received a small shipment of Carbon Fiber K1200S Tail Sections from Ilmberger of Germany We have a limited quantity incoming so if interested..Check dem out at http://pirateslair.net/PackParts.htm

5. Due to the fact that Verholen can't get those Herculean magnets any more, we have been forced to discontinue our K1200RS/GT Cap Kits We have a handful in stock at the moment and perhaps 3 or 4 more pair on the way from Germany.. Once they are gone... there will be no more...Damn!

6. We have just received our first shipment in over 8 months of the K1200S Workshop Manual on CD-ROM. Get them while you can.

7. We now have Clear Taillights for your K1200S/ K1200R In Stock from Clear Alternatives. These clear taillight housings are a direct replacement fit to the original stock K1200S and/or K1200R units requiring no modifications. It's a plug and play 10 minute install with zero issues with your foofoo brake/electronic systems. You want a brighter tail light?? We've got your ass.. in a non homosexual way.. not that there's anything wrong with that!

These tail lights come will a full bank of red burning LED's.. Expect 300% increase in brightness over stock. Legal in all 50 states! Web page is up at http://pirateslair.net/CleartailS.htm.. and we do hope to have a pic or two of one of these fired up soon.

Rally News/Info: Down The Road: 2006

2006 BMW MOA International Rally News: Look Out Vermont
It's about time BMW MOA staff chose a rally site worth actually riding to..Many probably remember me ranting about the choice of the last site... Hell..er.. I mean Ohio.. Geezz.. That was like choosing Lake Michigan for a premier surfing event. What were they thinking? Check out the 2006 BMW MOA International Rally Website which will be in scenic Vermont (a worthy destination) for info as to lodging, etc or get the inside scoop from our peers as to who's going, what to bring, where to stay, etc..

I'd suggest you register and book a room or campsite for the rally as soon as you can. Pre-registration is from April 1 - June 30, 2006. On-line registration will start on April 1, 2006.
Pre-Registration / $30 U.S Adults and/or $5 U.S Children
At the Gate / $35 U.S Adults and/or $10 U.S. Children
Note: There will be NO day passes.

The Blue Ridge Parkway Rally (Contributed by man about town, Tim (CBNFVR) Hudspeth over at www.K-Bikes.com )
Where: Peaks of Otter Lodge, Blue Ridge Pkwy mp 86, Virginia
When: May 4th thru 7th, 2006 (Thur – Sun)
Call Peaks of Otter Lodge for reservations. 1.540.586.1081 • 1.800.542.5927 • Fax 1.540.586.4420
Note: Specify one bed or two. !! Last year some found out that a few KING size beds are available. Blue Ridge Parkway info and maps can be found here and here Don’t know what BRPR is? It is us. All of these IDs and passwords transformed into real people, riding and laughing for three days. Rain or shine. If you don’t have a good time, sell the bike.
Alternate Lodging (info only) :
Super 8 – Bedford
Days Inn – Bedford

The 7th Annual Deals Gap K12 Rally ...(sponsored by www.I-BMW.com) is already scheduled and will again be held at the Tapoco Lodge at the end of September 2006. ... Sept 28-30th to be precise. This year every room was booked so I suggest you make reservations NOW just to make sure. You can always cancel if you can't make it. Be there!! Simply the best time of year to be in the mountains. Virtually perfect weather the last 5 years.

How-To-Survive On A Motorcycle

We have lots of new contributions this month.. . Thx guys!!! Could these tips save your life? Dare you NOT look?
Check out # 95 Contributed by the quasi-esteemed Jim Clabby of Marietta, GA ..
and #'s 96-99 Contributed by Sir Nick Zarras, Captain, USAF / Las Vegas, Nevada
and #100 Contributed by the inestimable Pappy Hoel, founder of the Sturgis motorcycle rally / Bismarck, ND
and #101 Contributed by Butch Greene a.k.a. Dragon / Malvern, Arkansas
and # 102 Contributed by our buddy down under.. Sir James van der Moezel in Western Australia
and #103 Contributed by the quasi-honorable Revill Dunn in Austin (Center of the Universe) Texas
and #104 Contributed by man about town, Ken Farley, SCRC Albany NY

If you'd like to help others by contributing a How-To-Survive on your Motorcycle, How to Survive Deals Gap, or any How-To link.. First... check out the tips we already have and if you have something new... just send to me and if it's worthy... I'll add it.. Remember.. we're all in this together.. so use deodorant.

BMW How-To Section

Nothing new this month.

Pirates Lair Cheesy Newsletters .. Past Issues