Take me home, El Capitan!

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

Around the 15th of each month, when I deem you are worthy, we put out our cheesy K12 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: August 2005 Issue

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

The solid city gates slowly open. Hector takes one last glance at Helen's unearthly beauty, turns, dons his helmet, and walks towards Achilles. Everything is quiet. The people on the high wall are hushed. Even the birds seem reverent. Achilles stands motionless. The gates behind Hector close. The two warriors are now alone on the vast field.. Hector stops 20 ft from Achilles.

Hector: I have seen this moment in the cheesy Pirates' Lair Newsletter.
Achilles , expressionless, stares at the prince.
Hector: I'll make a pact with you with the gods as our witnesses. Let us pledge that the winner will allow the loser all the proper funeral rituals.
Achilles: There are no packs between lions and men.
Achilles removes then tosses aside his helmet. An insulting gesture, impugning Hector's combat skills.
Achilles: Now you know who you're fighting.
Hector hesitates... then removes and tosses his own helmet to the ground.
Hector: I thought it was YOU I was fighting yesterday. I wish it had been you. But I gave the dead boy the honor he...
Achilles: You gave him the honor of your sword...
Achilles: You won't have eyes tonight. You won't have ears, or a tongue. You'll wonder the underworld, blind deaf, and dumb. And all the dead will know... This is Hector.. the fool who thought he killed Achilles.

All their lives.. all their training and past battles have led them to this moment. History will record the deeds of this day... of this moment.. for all eternity..

Achilles / Brad Pitt / Hector / Eric Bana / Troy 2004

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

To "S" or Not to "S"..? That is the Question

I've gotten more than a few e-mails complaining about how much wordage I've been dedicating to new K1200S and R bike products in our last few newsletters .. A few curmudgeons even asked for their money back!! Doh!.. Well.. my whining brethren.. here's the deal.. I don't create the news.. I just report what's going on out there in the real world. I have NOT abandoned my K12RS clientele .. It's just that virtually every company on earth seems determined to get a leg up (and p#@) on every other vendor on the market with their new S or R widget and there's simply an explosion of product activity. An explosion that we NEVER saw with the RS or GT's. On the other side of that coin... with the advent of the new bikes, any new or potentially creative R or GT products seems to have fallen on the wayside like Eric Estrada's career.
For what it's worth... I've ridden the new "S" bike and it is impressive.. It's not perfect but it's pretty damn close for a first year bike. BMW seems to have actually been listening as they have addressed virtually every complaint we RS people have been spewing forth for the last 6 years.. more power.. less weight... better mirrors... wider wheels.. lower seat... firm pouting young breasts, etc, etc..
Do I have any plans on selling my 98 K1200RS to upgrade to the new bikes? Nope..I'm still in love with my RS... While Amber is pushing me to purchase the "S" for biz reasons..(yes.. I do have an amazing wife and No.. I will NOT sell her DNA for cloning) .. IMHO.. that's not a good enough reason to purchase a motorcycle. It should be a "spiritual" need and at present.. the spirit hasn't moved me. However.. the more I see of the bike.. (and the R).. the more I like them. except, of course for that abomination of a tail light. For now.. I just report da news..Get used to it, my friends.. I don't see the situation changing any time soon.. nor will I stop seeking out goodies for our beloved RS's or GT's. If you want your name off our newsletter list.. I won't be offended..

Singing the Praises of http://www.i-bmw.com/

These days it seems like my fellow dinosaurs (you know who you are) rarely post or even show up at the I-BMW.com .. the #1 chat site for all things K1200RS/GT/S/R. Why? Probably lots of reasons. Time restrictions.. apathy.... tired of seeing the same questions posted over and over... nothing more to say...dead.. lack of nudity or a combination of all of the aforementioned. It's been years since Dread-master V Salemme started this wonderful site and geezus how things have changed. It was through I-BMW.com that we actually sold our first BMW product years ago.

What an interesting time that was.. before Osama... before Ipods.. before reality TV. The site used to go down like a well paid porn star ....almost weekly.. then monthly.. Things got better.. the visuals and hardware changed .. presidents came and went... dresses were stained., but it's always been a cyber-oasis for us K12'ers and the supreme source of K12 knowledge.

It's a fact that BMW designers frequent the site to see what WE are saying.. good and bad.. and believe me.. they have been listening. Who needs CNN and Fox news to know what's going on in the world when you have a site like Vic's? While most of the original suspects seem to be missing for the most part, it appears that new members are joining virtually on a daily basis. Vic's "you're an adult... act like one and we're cool" format is still a breath of fresh air when compared to any other chat site I've seen including the few that have tried and have failed to compete directly with I-BMW. Like a bar where everyone knows your name ..it's a place where you can leave your job behind and just relax. I still love the site.

If you haven't been there in a while, or posted in a while, or never logged on.. You should. Good guys.. great moderators.. so much valuable information. You'll laugh.. you'll cry.. you'll meet like-minded people.. (but don't let that scare you away)...and you'll learn something about these bikes..
and BTW.. No.. I have no vested interest in the site as Vic keeps it "vendor-free". I just visit like everyone else.. hoping to say something clever now and then so people will not realize I'm socially challenged. My personal thanks to Vic and all the moderators for what they are doing. A mostly thankless job, no doubt. and don't forget friends.. Vic and the guys take donations via Paypal...If you'd like to contribute to the cause... simply use the Paypal button at the bottom of the page at their website or go to http://www.paypal.com/ and send directly to vsalemme@earthlink.net These chat type sites don't just miraculously sprout on the www like some juicy psilocybin 'shrooms.. ..there is a team somewhere deep in the "jeffries tubes" working on it... and unpaid team.

The Best BMW K1200RS Photos You'll Ever See!!

About 8 months ago, I posted in both our cheesy newsletter and at http://www.i-bmw.com/ that Amber was requesting our friends and reader's very best BMW K1200RS photos' for the purpose of producing a professional grade calendar. We received some absolutely stunning shots... As a matter of fact, there were so many world class shots that we couldn't even choose only 12 plus a front and back cover. We had decided we'd have to break precedence and produce an 18 month calendar... Well..here's the follow up.. and the weepy part of the story.. We spoke with and interviewed a dozen different printing place reps... none could come in under $4000!! Some were as high as $30K for a minimum run. As Amber did NOT want to make a half-assed calendar... (via Pip or Kinko).. she has just decided to bail on the project.. Very sad as we had story-boarded the entire project.. picked the best 20 shots...dumped hours into the project.. damaged or destroyed zillions of productive brain cells.

Rather than hoard the shots that were generously contributed.. I have just posted them in our Pirates' Lair Photo Gallery It's in the first (newest) photo album cleverly entitled.. K1200RS: The Best Shots Be prepared to be blown away. FYI.. Virtually ALL the shots we uploaded are Hi-rez...

Amber and I would like to personally thank everyone for contributing to the project and analogize for not getting it done.. Simply would have lost serious money on it. Money that could have been better spent on very sticky tires and track days...er.. I mean the grand kids..

New Robbinsville Resort: Blue Waters Mountain Lodge

For all you Tail of the Dragon or Cherohala Skyway riders looking for a little more upscale accommodations than the Microtel and/or San Ran while in or near Robbinsville...check out this waaay cool bike-friendly place..http://www.bluewatersmtnl.com/ It's located just a couple of blocks off the main drag.. We were just contacted by the owners with this info for our quasi-esteemed readers...

"Blue Waters Mountain Lodge has been designed in the classic style of a 1920’s alpine retreat. Porches and decks complement the natural environment combining colors that echo the tradition of the original grand homes built in the Smoky Mountains at the turn of the last century. The Lodge’s grand hall boasts handcrafted woodworking, creating a cozy setting amid the warmth of two-story stone fireplace, rustic furnishings and high ceilings. A recreation room adjoins the dining room and lobby of the Lodge, where you will find billiards, cards, darts, a reading library, cable television and a variety of indoor games. "
The Lodge features nine guest rooms, most of which offer panoramic lake and mountain views. Each guest room has been decorated with natural pine, rustic woods, and antique furnishings that reflect the mountain setting with autumn colors of moss, brick red and wheat. Each room has a king or queen bed, private bath, and cable television. If we can be of any assistance planning a getaway, please do not hesitate to call us at 888-828-3978 or visit our website at www.BlueWatersMtnL.com. We look forward to hearing from you soon!
Sincerely,... Mike and Maury Stewart

Video from a Motorcycle: Direct to Disk vs Tape.. Which Is Best?

I recently bought my first ever video camera with the sole intention of doing bike videos. I've been doing lots of track days lately and I almost live at Deals Gap and I have always wanted to record my moto-heroics before I'm too old to ride competently... After seeking sage advice from videophiles, fellow riders, and of course. the infallible Koran (Doh!).. I decided that direct to disk was the way to go and after reading reviews from 4 or 5 sources, the new Sony 5.1 dcrdvd 403 seemed to be the best on the market. Coughed up the $1000, bought one of our own SportBikeCam Mount's, a handful of the mini CD's and hit the road for some video shoots.. Immediate Problems!! After a dozen runs and not ONE watchable video I came to this conclusion....The technology for these new direct to disk formats is simply too new for the brutal environment of a sport bike. It appears that if you hit any bump the recording would simply cut off.. or with high RPM vibration. Remember when CD players were first installed in cars and when you hit any bump they'd skip?? Same principle. Would a rider on a Goldwing or K1200LT have this problem?? I have ZERO idea and my testing is NOT scientific. I am no expert. I just have a keyboard and a venue to bloviate.

Rather than leave you hanging in white knuckle'd suspense.... I returned the Sony 403 and swapped it for the cheaper Sony DCR-HC32 (pic at right) which records direct to those mini-tapes.. works like a charm. Took the camera to Barber Motorsports Park the day after I bought it and I made 7 videos.. virtually all perfect...Check out my first on-bike video by clicking Here.. if you dare.

Insurance Companies: Motorcycle Friendly? or Money Hungry Demons From Hell?

We see them in most of the motorcycle magazines.. Claiming they understand our needs/wants/desires... claiming they ride motorcycles... claiming to have the lowest rates ... Most are lying liars with only one question on their minds.. "What's in your wallet?"..... IMHO.. one step above lawyers on the slime scale... Here's one to avoid if you are thinking about buying an MV Agusta 1000.... Dairyland Insurance. I have had insurance with them for a few years .. Always seemed nice enough..quiet.. keeps to themselves. The last bike I insured with Dairyland was my MV Agusta F4 750 for a quasi-reasonable $620 a year...Almost twice what my K1200RS is insured for, but the F4 is an exotic..

Called for a quote on the new MV 1000cc F4 on 8/5 and was quoted $3500. After I came to and changed my soiled underwear, I asked how the rate could be so high as I'll be 50 in 2 months.... have NEVER had an accident in 35 years of riding... . have a certification from the MSF school.....have only one minor ticket on my record in the last 5 years..and I have a personal relationship with God's younger brother, Scotty.. They said.. "that's why the quote is ONLY $3500.. it goes UP from there!!! " Extortion.. plain and simple!! Companies that set rates like this should NOT go unpunished/unchallenged. Show your outrage next time you are thinking abut your coverage by going elsewhere...or giving them a piece 'o your mind. Ask for the person in charge... The peons that sell the policies don't make the policies..

BTW.. I also called http://www.bike-line.com/.. the company that insures my BMW K1200RS for only $480 a year... The same people that ONLY insure motorcycles.. ALL motorcycles.. The company run by motorcyclists for motorcyclists. They had never heard of an MV Agusta. They told me that sometimes rates aren't available with new makes/brands. I had to inform them that MV has been making bikes for 30 YEARS!. Doh! Rant over... wish I felt better.

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

1. Hornig of Germany has some new K1200S and RS accessories on their menu. Some waaay cool chrome gauge rings and what looks like a shift lever enhancer.

2. You video cam owners... ever consider yourself a closet Francis Ford Coppola? A fledgling moto-Spielberg? For those aspiring motorcycle video artists out there... Check out http://www.ridebehindvideos.com/videos.html They have some great stuff... and don't miss episode #10.. the road to Palomar Mtn. Kids.. don't try this at home.

3. Last month I mentioned there was a battery charger as close as your nearest extortionist..er.. dealer available for the new K1200S/R... Well here's a follow up: BMW Part# BM99990005656 The BMW Advanced Battery Charging System is specially designed for use on BMW motorcycles. It maintains new BMW gel (standard from ’04) and older-style lead-acid batteries at full charge for extended periods of time without the risk of overcharging or boiling over. Comes complete with BMW accessory socket plug and jumper clips.

4. One company that shall remain nameless by request (so some people won't be bugging the piss out of them) will have an electronic cruise control on the market for the BMW K1200S within the next few months..

5. Staintune (of Australia) will have a Slip-On exhaust (part# BM MS K120 R 05) for the K1200R on the market Sept 1st. Retail Price will be $650.00 Australian Dollars This animated info was just furnished by the Aussies:

"On the Staintune in house dyno there was huge horsepower gain of 10 peak horsepower and with a gain right through the range and really blasting from around 6,000 rpm Now lets talk the torque, hang onto the bars @7,000 rpm torque is lifted by 11Nm and holds, not to mention that there is a mean torque increase through the whole range. Rip that throttle @ 6,000 rpm and hang on baby your gonna get launched".

All of this with no engine mapping or re-tuning, bolt on performance……………..
Noise / Note:
Restrictors In: 93 dba @ 5125 rpm
Restrictors Out: 97 dba @ 5125 rpm
Weight Savings: 5.5 Kg

6. Speaking of exhausts for the K1200S and R.. Two Bros Racing is about to release their offering to the market.. Also slip-ons.. They offer 3 versions.. Carbon Fiber, Titanium, and Aluminum in two different canister shapes... the C-5 Oval and the smaller M2 oval which has a colored tip. Retail will be about $650+ shipping.

7. This just in from the people at Power Commander.. Here's a Zero Map for the BMW K1200 RS/GT with the Staintune muffler. Closed / loop set to 13.8:1

8. The K1200RS/GT Cam Kit is finally on the market from Rhinewest Performance, Inc. To clarify.. the Cam Kit does NOT include cams.. but instead, the kit replaces the cam sprockets. ..both intake and exhaust. The Kit also includes a new chip and board. Retail for whole Kit is around $559. + shipping. If you already have a RW Chip, they offer an upgrade Kit for $359 where you get both sprockets and a new chip ONLY. You plug it into your current RW board. You do NOT have to return the old chip. The kicker here... This kit will ONLY work on a stock bike and stock exhaust... You will suffer slightly on top end.. but gain substantially on the low end where most of us mere mortals ride. This kit adds heaps of low end torque. I actually rode a test bike and it gave much more low end grunt than a standard chipped bike. One thing to keep in mind... while there is an early and late model kit, just like their Chip.. I would imagine that the kit will void any factory warranty... I could be wrong..

9. ZTechnik is about to put some Carbon Fiber Kits on the market for the K1200S. Look for a 4 piece kit which includes a tank protector, triple clamp trim, forward gas tank section, and a gauge cover for about $170 and a stand alone tank protector for $80.US.. Look for those to hit the streets in about 2 weeks...This is real Carbon Fiber..not that faux stuff... Swimmin' pools.. movie stars...

10. We hear a company in the UK is producing billet brake and clutch reservoir covers for the new K1200S and R bikes.. Can you say.. "bling."?

What's New at Pirates' Lair?

1. You asked for them.. and yet again we deliver.. We now have Hyperpro Steering Dampers In Stock. If your BMW K1200RS/GT/ or LT has over 25K on the clock.. your factory damper is as worthless as see-through panties on a nun. If your handling isn't as rock-solid as it used to be.. and Viagra doesn't work..this could be the solution.

2. We now have both the SILVER and BLACK K1200S/R helmet locks In Stock. No web page up yet as we don't have pictures of them on a bike, yet.. To order, call the always scantily clad Amber at 828.628.7093 EST

3. Due to an over-stock situation we just lowered the price of our K1200RS/GT Custom Torque Arms by $20. Get them while you can!! Trash that cheesy sheet-metal piece the Germans cursed you with...

4. We now have the Verholen Passenger Peg Lowering Kit for the "S" bike in stock. Sure.. we actually do care about your passenger!!

5. We now have both front and rear Pit Bull Stands for the K1200S and K1200R. This US made stand offers easy one man/woman/Krell operation without the fear of your $16,000.00 toy crashing to the ground when lifting.. Keep one thing in mind when ordering the front lift.. Unlike the rear lift which can be used alone.. you can NOT use the front lift without the rear lift. Se comprende?

6. We just reprinted one last batch of Pirates' Lair K1200RS tees featuring the Marrakech RED bike... supposedly.. the fastest color...It will probably be the last K1200RS tee we print.

7. We now have the Rhinewest Performance, Inc.K1200RS/GT Cam Kit in our product line. Who else would??!! As mentioned on Bill O'Reilly, the Cam Kit does NOT include cams.. but instead, the kit replaces the cam sprockets. ..both intake and exhaust. The Kit also includes a new chip and board. Retail for whole Kit is around $559. + shipping. If you already have a RW Chip, they offer an upgrade Kit for $359 This kit will ONLY work on a stock bike and stock exhaust... There is an early and late model kit, just like their chip.. FYI.. I tested one of these kits... and it rocks, my brothers...

8. Do you own a K1200R?? Then check out our all new Pirates' Lair K1200R Tees featuring the Red, White, and Blue BMW Power Cup Racing bike..!! Flaunt your massive, throbbing horsepower with one of these ultra stylish limited production, 50/50 Haynes Beefy tees...100% cotton lovingly harvested from virgin sheep.. . Inform the uneducated masses that you ride the BMW K1200R... The Baddest BMW on Earth...Guaranteed to attract super models* .. ( * if worn by Tom Cruise, Brad Pitt, Colin Farrell, Jude Law )

9. We have the new Two Brothers Racing Slip-on exhausts for the K1200R and S on the menu. They are due in stock in about 2 weeks.

10. Finishing touches are being put on a Brake LED Taillight Kit for the K1200S and R... Hope to have them in stock VERY soon. I am told they ROCK!!

Rally News/Info: Down The Road: 2005

The 6th Annual Deals Gap K12 Rally ...will again be held at the Tapoco Lodge in 2005, Sept 29th-Oct 1st to be precise. It won't hold us all, so make plans now! No sign-up sheet yet. Just reserve a room and be there! Most of us from this year already have a room, so it's not too soon to plan.
(info provided by the quasi-esteemed moto-god...Tim Hudspeth.. a.k.a CBNFVR) Glad to know that besides Bill O'Reilly.. someone else is looking out for us.. Thanks Tim.

The 2006 Hill Country Rally is already in the works!! ! Here's a note from our good pardner James Myrick,... next year's organizer.....
"Well partners, the Texas Hill Country Roundup 2006 date is official: We are going for 4 days of two wheel fun in the country this time around. April 12 ( Wed.) 13,14, 15 and if you wish Sunday 16th ( Easter ). It will be at "The Inn of the Hills " so mark your calendars. Details to follow in a few months. "

Finger Lakes i-BMW Group 2005 August 19-21 Further details to follow coming weeks...stay tuned.
Location: Watkins Glen NY.
Early bird arrivals Thursday 18th
i-bmw not affiliated with any other rally/club.
Check these links for lodging: http://www.watkinsglenlodging.com/facilities.html or http://www.schuylerny.com/

How-To-Survive On A Motorcycle

We have a TWO new contributions this month. The first from our friend.. Lt Col John Reschar of Colorado Springs, Colorado Check it out # 90
The second from the quasi-legendary Graham Dockrill in the UK His is # 91 Thx guys..no luggage but a hardy pat on da back. Glad somebody is lookin' out for us..
Could these tips save your life? Do you dare NOT look?

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

Jason Dellinger sent in his tips on installing the new Verholen K1200S Bar Risers.. http://www.pirateslair.net/svriserinstall.htm Thx, J..
Sir Steve Linden...BMW K1200S owner, sent in his How-To Install Fiamms on the K1200S at http://www.pirateslair.net/K1200Shornin.htm
Guess that kinda wraps this one up. Ride safe and best wishes for a good summer!.... See ya in my mirrors...

Pirates Lair Cheesy Newsletters .. Past Issues