"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 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. Also... something to keep in mind... My language in the email subscription version may offend the meek. Subscribe at your own risk. The on-line version is a bit more... PC..

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....

Lastly, our e-subscriber newsletter also has all our specials listed.. sales, blems, close-outs, scratch & dent items, etc. or if you'd like to see our current specials without subscribing, just Click Here.

The Latest Cheesy Pirates' Lair Newsletter: June 2009

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

We see the silhouette of an unmistakable figure. It's Snake Plissken all right, live and in the flesh. Snake walks into Hauk's office and sits down. He raises his cuffed hands as if to say "Take these off me, asshole," but he doesn't actually say anything.

Hauk: I'm not a fool...
Plissken: SNAKE (coooooool) Call me Ssssnake.
Hauk: (Hauk puts on his glasses and proceeds to read a file. ) S.D. Plissken. American Lieutenant. Special Forces Unit, Black Flight. Two Purple Hearts, Leningrad and Siberia. Youngest man to be decorated by the President. You robbed the federal reserve depository. Life sentence, New York Maximum Security Penitentiary. I'm ready to kick your ass out of the world, War Hero.
Snake: (strikes a match and takes a drag from his cigarette.) Who are you?
Hauk: Hauk. Police Commissioner.
Snake: Why are we talking?
Hauk: I have a deal for you. You'll receive full pardon for every criminal act committed in the United States plus .. the June issue Pirates' Lair Cheesy Newsletter.
Hauk: (pressing his advantage) There was an accident about an hour ago. A small jet went down inside New York City. The President was on board.
Snake: President of what?
Hauk: That's not funny, Plissken. You go in, find the President and bring him out in 24 hours, and you're a free man.
Snake: Twenty-four hours, huh?
Hauk: I'm making you an offer. Give me an answer.
Snake: Get a new president.

Snake Plisskin / Kurt Russell . . Hauk / Lee Van Cleef... Escape From New York / 1981

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

Picture Of The Month! Lock and Load (Click Image for a Larger View)

Every month customers send us killer photos and I see no reason to keep them to myself so what better way to say thanks for sharing than to post them in this Picture of the Month spot..

Our June POTM was contributed by our good buddy, Dwayne..aka.. BeemerD over at www.I-BMW.com .. This spectacular shot was taken at the Tank Museum at CFB (Canadian Forces Base) Borden, near the town of Angus Ontario. The aircraft in the background: a CF-104, which was based on the Lockheed F-104.

If you would like to contribute your own"worthy" shot for our newsletter, here's what I'll need. First.. just email me 1 or 2 of your best digital shots. It'll need to be at least 800x600 in size or larger and preferably A. Of a BMW K1200S, K1200RS, K1200R, R Sport, or any model year K1200GT and B. In focus.

Click For Larger Image If You Dare..
Click Image for a Larger View

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Me and My 2006 K1200S: It's All Love Now

Having a relationship with a motorcycle is much like having a relationship with a woman. It's an expensive and complicated undertaking involving many highs and lows and if you're lucky.. no attorneys or 911 calls. Your happiness depends not only on how sexy she looks or how good she makes you feel when you are alone together, but also on how much grief she gives you on a daily basis. Feel me? Another consideration ..When things get really intimate, are you expecting her to do things she's not comfortable with? and ultimately being disappointed when she refuses to do them? or does them badly? I could use some prurient sexual analogies here, but I won't...For once I'll let you use your own deviant imagination.

Most have heard me complain about my K1200S's "personality" problems and deficiencies. Many a time I've launched into unprovoked saliva slinging diatribes against the Germans and their predilection for designing overly complex motorcycles just because they can and then dumping them on the public before they work out all the bugs. No other manufacturer could get away with this. Up until a few weeks ago when people asked me how I like my K1200S I almost always said "it's a like/hate relationship" because while the bike has it's virtues.. it's simply to heavy and complex for my tastes and ultimately doesn't compare with the other bikes I own. No more. In the last 2 months I have become a believer, but probably not for the reasons you might think.

Like many, my bike has had it's fair share of issues..bad ball joints.. replaced.. bad rotors.. replaced.. bad air-box.. replaced.. sloppy shifting... fixed.. bum software.. upgraded.. the eagerness to eat tires by the truckload...Well.. I'm still working on that one.. One by one I have been painfully sorting out the issues that the Germans should have taken care of before selling it to me. About a month ago the last "biggie" issue.. the software/fueling problem was resolved and for the first time since I bought her a full 3 years ago...the bike runs absolutely perfectly..You might think/hope/pray this would be the end of the story.. Unfortunately, no. Even after all the gremlins were banished, I still wasn't feeling the love. How could this be? Virtually everyone I know that owns a K1200S loves it and swears it's the best bike they've ever owned. What am I missing? Could it just be me?? Have I become a moto-diva?. I sat down and asked myself... "Why am I not happy with this magnificent motorcycle?" The answer eluded me for hours.. days.. weeks.

Then one night around 3am, like a bolt of lightening striking directly into the heart of my cerebral cortex.. the answer came to me!!..A revelation born of deep introspection we men are known for. I had been asking her to do things she doesn't want to do or can't do. I was not accepting her for who she is.. I was trying to bend her to my will and ultimately making us both unhappy. I had been riding her like my R1 or my Ducati 1098. I had been riding her like a sport bike! While the K1200S does all things competently.. she certainly isn't a sport bike no matter what BMW's slick advertising campaign would have us believe. So what to do? As in any relationship, the secret of success is to love them for who they are.. not who you want them to be.. and if you can't.. you have two options. Three if you are Scott Peterson. Let them go or change yourself..

The answer was so simple and right in front of me (in the mirror) the whole time... I was the problem. not the bike. So on April 15th, with this new found epiphany in (throttle) hand and 12,500 miles on the bike.. I changed my knee-dragging ways while on the Beemer. On that day I started riding her like Crom intended.. As a sport touring bike and by doing so my relationship with the bike has blossomed into something good.. something positive. I now love my K1200S. She is happy.. I am happy. The local law enforcement officers are happy. I find myself actually choosing the BMW over the other two bikes in the stable as my favorite plaything more often than not.. I finally get it and it's all love.

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Product Review: Radar Detector Visual Alert

My name is Jerry and I have a speeding problem. There.. I've said it. It's not a choice. I was born this way. As law enforcement officers are inexplicable attracted to me like geeks to Star Trek, I have to protect myself. For the last few years my defensive weapons of choice have been my trusty Valentine One used in conjunction with my HARD. The combination is, for the most part, very effective. Of course, I still get the infrequent "velocity awards," but those are usually due to instant-on radar of which there's virtually no fool-proof way to avoid. I speed therefore I pay the price.

I love my HARD but it does have obvious limitations. When the batteries go dead..and you never know when that's gonna happen.. you are unknowingly exposed to every radar equipped Barney Fife cruising the byways. Recently I almost got tagged due to some dead batteries so I decided to purchase and install a back-up radar warning device. .. the Visual Alert by Marc Parnes Products

I should mention, I almost tested the Visual Alert a few years ago but passed on the chance when I mistakenly thought that the unit's LEDs had to be in direct line of sight in order for it to be effective. I thought it had to be mounted on the top edge of the windshield which I was unwilling to do. That was a misconception. In reality, you can mount the unit anywhere within your peripheral vision and still get adequate visual warnings..

Bogey at 3 oclock..!!

In a nutshell, the Visual Alert plugs directly into the detector's speaker outlet. The V1 doesn't have one, but every other radar detector in the Milky Way Galaxy does.. That's why you have to buy the $50 Remote Audio Adapter from Valentine in order to use the Visual Alert. Geez. The Visual Alert has no batteries or complex electronics to wear out or fail. It is powered by the detector's speaker output alone. It consists of a series of ultra-bright red LEDs that flash an alert in concert with the detector's normal beep. As the beeps increase in frequency so do the flashes until they become a steady glow as you approach the radar or laser source.

The V1 model Visual Alert comes in two configurations. The standard unit (at $59) has 5 LEDs and is more than bright enough for most mortals. Marc can also custom build the Visual Alert UB (UltraBright) with 10 LEDs which, as an over achiever, I opted for for $95 + shipping. Marc offers 1 or 2 different base angles, but I asked for a custom 90 degree angle (pic top right) so I could mount it on top of my K1200S instrument cluster. At the 90 degree angle it directs the LEDs virtually right at my aging face.. perfect. Marc doesn't charge any extra for this mod.

After I begrudgingly bought Valentine's Remote Audio Adapter (mentioned previously.. pic at right), got it installed, and the Visual Alert mounted in tandem with my HARD.. I hit the road looking for Barney. It didn't take long to find him. He usually waits for me at the end of my driveway. The first thing I noticed was that the Visual Alert has a quicker response time than the HARD. I'd guesstimate it activates about 1/2 second quicker than the HARD. This makes since as I knew there was a slight time-lag when using the HARD as it is wireless. It proves to me just how good the HARD really is. I don't know about you but I can't react in under 1/2 second unless I'm right on the brake lever or there's an offer of oral sex involved. Visually, I could be looking almost anywhere except in my mirrors and still see the super bright LEDs go off. Just what I was hoping for.

IMHO.. the Visual Alert is NOT something I'd want as my only radar detector alert source as there's always the slight chance that you'll NOT have it in your peripheral vision like when you're searching the skys for UFOs or law enforcement helicopters, but it certainly is a viable option and I'm glad to have it in my arsenal. The only downside of the Visual Alert would be night time use. At night it's bright enough to either distract you, attract unwanted attention from malevolent aliens in the next galaxy, or trigger an epileptic seizure. The HARD has the same issue. However.. all you have to do is reach down and turn it off. Issue resolved. Did I mention it's extremely weather and shock resistant? Overall... money well spent..

Currently the Visual Alert is being produced for the Valentine One, the Escort Passport 8500 and 9500i, and the Beltronics Pro and Vector Series. It will unfortunately not work with any model of the Escort Solo.

What's New In the K12 / K13 No-Spin Zone

I should note that as the RS and first generation GT has 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.I-BMW.com, www.K-Bikes.com , and www.BMWK1200S.com for the information & pictures I regularly pilfer from these chat sites..

1. Definitive proof that there is a God. In last months cheesy newsletter, I was shouting from the proverbial rooftops that the beautiful LED Tail light that comes stock on the European 2009 BMW K1300S can be retrofitted onto the US version 2005-2008 K1200S.. This comes as good news to those who own a 2005-2008 K1200S as that stock tail light in an abomination to all things great and small. Here's some follow-up info from Bruce aka KPower (a Canuck) over at www.I-BMW.com The plug is part of BMW's K1300S Rear-Light wiring harness. The wire codes (colors) are identical to the K1200S wiring harness. Simply plug the brown (ground) wire into the brown wire, and the same match-up for the white/red, and white/black wires.The only modification is to solder 'bayonet' type connectors to match the existing K1200S wire connectors - the connectors that attach to the existing bulb. The existing K1200S wiring harness connects to the tail of the new K1300S wiring harness (instead of connecting directly on the bulb). And the new K1300S wiring harness plugs into the LED Rear-Light. So there you have it.. the cure for baboon-ass for under $200US. There are lots of waaay cool pretty pictures showing the install over at www.I-BMW.com

The European version part numbers and prices in Canada are:
(1) K1300S Tail part (Kabelbaum) wiring harness ECE, Part No. 61-11-7-712-920, CDN $60.00 plus 12% PST/GST sales taxes, total CDN $67.20; and
(1) K1300S (Heckleuchte) Rear light LED ECE, Part No. 63-21-7-713-301, CDN $247.00 plus tax, total CDN $276.

I am not a baboon!!.. I am a tail light!

Caution US DIYers: The US version of the K1300S rear light and tail wiring harness are different from the European version. The European version has the number plate light integrated in the bottom of the rear light. The US version does not. Rather, it has a separate number plate light. I hear that there are issues with the US-spec K1300S LED light. The US-spec light has the same connector but is missing 1 of the pins (the positive for the LED registration plate light).  You can connect your ground wire and the brake light wire and it'll work just fine; which is odd because the brake light bulb's filament does not light up at all unless you use the brakes in the stock taillight. There must be enough current running through the brake line to run the LEDs at low power when the brake is not applied or maybe the computer is detecting them somehow. So if you are installing the US version, you will need a different rear light and wiring harness than the Euro part #'s listed.

2. There's a nice How To Install a Centerstand on a K1200S over at I-BMW.com Nice work, Kev.

3. Are you power hungry? Stupid question. I received a message from Ken at Evoluzione that the Evo Race Filters they've been selling for the BMW K1200S will also work perfectly on the new K1300S.! Woohoo! Plug-N-Play, baby.. Plug-N-Play.

4. Thinking about buying one of the new BMW S1000RR superbikes when they come out in a few months? Trying to tell yourself to wait for year number 2 or 3 while the first year guinea pigs work the bugs out? Then you may NOT want to watch this raw, guerrilla style, unedited,. mouth watering video... It even has me reconsidering.... BMW S1000RR Exclusive Intro, Tech & Design Overview The video link was sent to us by Shahram Shiva over at www.BMWSuperBikes.com

5. The BMW K1600LT is on its way! According to hot rumors out of Germany, BMW is in the final testing phase of its replacement for the iconic K1200LT.The new bike is apparently a 1600cc six-cylinder motorcycle with the by-now-usual-for-the-range host of electronic rider aids including the firm's ESA electronic suspension adjustment technology and huge hard panniers as standard. The bike is due to be revealed at the Paris motorcycle show later this year and will go on sale early in 2010..From the one pic I've seen.. it looks as big as a Buick.

6. Wondering if there's enough room on your K1200R for a Nautilus Air Horn? I now have pics and some how-to tips if any of you K1200R or K1300R owners are interested. Last week I received this humorous/sadistic testimonial from a K1200R owner.. thought I'd share..

Trying to find a suitable spot for the 139dbl Stebel Nautilus Air Horn (Plus Wiring Harness Kit) I got from you proved to be a challenge on my K1200R.  I finally settled for the pocket between my dash and my mid-sized wind screen right on top of my headlight.  Anyway, after finding a suitable ground (challenging with all the plastic up front, I had to wire the ground to the frame near the accessory plug), my girlfriend came out to see what I was doing.  When I told her I was wiring up a new horn, she wanted to hear it.  Not sure if I had wired all the leads up correctly, I wanted to hear it myself.  When I turned the key and pressed the horn button, it was so loud it scared my girlfriend so much she started to cry, and I couldn't stop laughing like a hyena.This new horn will make sure I stay safe out there with all those cages blindly weaving through traffic. One press of the button, and they'll be riding the Hershey-squirt express right the hell out of my way!  Shawn in Vancouver BC
PS: my girlfriend hates you.

What's New at Pirates' Lair?

1. Specials / Closeouts /  Blems / Pirates' Lair E-Deals !! I have a new section up and it's been a long time comin' as we get requests all the time. Want to save some money? Not as anal as the rest of us poor bastards? On any given day, we have items in stock that customers decided they didn't want... got scratched in transit... were discontinued... have slight flaws.. or we just got over-stocked because some dumb-ass ordered something that we already had plenty of in stock. I won't name names. Rather than lose sleep over such things.. we just offer them on our new "Specials Page". .. These items are sold on a "first come first serve" basis. Everything in this section is sold "as is." All prices posted include USPS shipping inside the continental US. Let the plundering begin.. Arrrrrrrg.

2. Power Hungry BMW K1300S Owners: Tired of the lowly 175HP the Germans left you with? We just found out that the Evoluzione Race Air Filters that we've been selling for the K1200S will install and work perfectly on the new K1300S. You want a few more ponies.. Are we not men? Woohoo!

3. Due to a glitch in the Matrix, we've had to move our most holy How To Survive On A Motorcycle page. Book mark it.. spread the word. Feel free to share with friends and family and or print out for new riders. Some of the tips you'll already know... some not. In this sport... knowledge and a sharp mind are prerequisites to staying alive. We are still adding contributions every month.

4. BMW K1300S Owners looking for a radar detector mount? We just got confirmation that the ZTechnik TechMount we've been selling for the K1200S and K1300GT will install and work perfectly on the right side of the K1300S. We have zero idea if it will work on the left side. If you'd like to try.. let us know.

5. We are having a rare sale on ALL our R & G Racing MV Agusta F4 and Brutale Sliders.. Frame sliders, Fork sliders, etc.. Get them while they last!!

6. I just got notification that prices on the TechSpec's Gripster Tank Grips are about to go up across the board by about $6 a kit.. FYI

7. Like the look of the K1200S Laser HotCam2 Stealth Slip-On? Of course you do...Now we are offering one for the Ducati 848, 1098, 1098S, 1198, & 1198S. It is available in Carbon Fiber only. The new Ducati Laser Stealth comes with removable silencers, allowing you to go from a European approved deep tone sound level to a full sport sound in a matter of seconds. This is the first muffler designed completely using state of the art engine/exhaust/performance software. The benefits of this Laser handmade muffler are: Ultra Lightweight 60% lighter than stock.... Deep Sound... High Quality Carbon Fiber .. 5 extra ponies....Longer lasting erections. The badge /logo will peel right off (if desired) as it is a decal for a cleaner look. Damn these look good!!!
Click Here To See More... If You Dare

K12 / K13 Rally / Event News : Down The Road: 2009

I-BMW.com Track Day Weekend! June 20-21, 2009

When: June 20-21st, 2008 (Saturday & Sunday)
Where: Roebling Road Race Track (Savannah, GA area)
Cost: 1 instructional group with 10 people. Cost is $250.00 per day. $500 total. BOTH DAYS REQUIRED! 1 non-instructional with 20 people. Cost is $150.00 per day. $300 total. BOTH DAYS REQUIRED!

Woohoo! Are you ready for the second annual www.I-BMW.com track day weekend? Of course you are. The weekend is confirmed and reserved. If you are a member of I-BMW.com or just a mere mortal and are interested in attending this event you should visit the site for full details..

If the event is anything like last year, about 50% of the attendees will be on BMW's.. the other 50% on other brand bikes.. Ducati, MV Agusta, YamaHonSuzuSaki, etc. All religions are welcome.

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2009 Summer Solstice K12 / K13 Rally: June 19-21, 2009

Where: Sun & Ski Inn and Suites in Stowe, Vermont
When: June 19th thru 21st, 2009 (Fri – Sun)

The 2009 Summer Solstice Rally will again be in Stowe, VT on the weekend of June 19, 20 and 21. It will be at the Sun & Ski Inn on the Mountain Road. Just up from previous years location.

The rates based on Dbl occ
Standard $105
Superior $110

Rates incl breakfast, exclude rooms and meals tax of 10% and a 7 % service fee. Cancellation period is 15 days. They do ask for a one night deposit to hold the reservation. Participants should call in for direct reservations and refer to the BMW gathering for the correct rates.

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2009 Sierra Gold Rush K12 / K13 Rally: Sept 13-16, 2009

Where: Sonora Days Inn, Sonora, California
When: Sept 12th thru 16th, 2009 (Sun – Weds)

A pre-rally is planned in Downieville, CA at the Riverside Inn: Rooms are reserved for Sept. 9th through 11th. September 12th will be a travel day to Sonora, an easy and beautiful day's ride south of Downieville.Lodging here is very limited... there are only a handful of rooms available, so if you plan to attend the pre-rally you should make your reservations immediately. Tell them that you are with the I-BMW group!! If they are booked up when you call, there is other lodging available in Downieville, and everything is within walking distance:

For booking at the actual Sierra Gold Rush Rally call the Sonora Days Inn at 209-532-2400. Tell them that you are with the I-BMW group. If you talk to someone who is clueless about our group, ask to speak to Tracy. We have rooms reserved here for Sept. 12th through 15th, with the 16th optional. This rally will be even better than the last, and we are expecting a much larger turnout in 2009, so make your reservations now! If all the planets align.. I'll see you there. . I've already made my reservations.

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*NEW* The 10th Annual Deals Gap K12 / K13 Rally: Sept 24-27th, 2009 ( New Location! )

Where: Ridge Top Motel and Campground, Bryson City, North Carolina
390 Arlington Ave, Bryson City, NC 28713
When: Sept 24th thru 27th, 2009
Reservations: (828) 488-6363 Toll Free (866) 415-9692

Be sure to mention i-bmw group

Rates $45 per night plus tax / MC, Visa , Amex , Disc
Office closes at 11:00 pm (late arrivals be sure to call ahead)
24 hour cancellation notice / Click for Google Map
Alternative (More Upscale) Lodging: Sleep Inn, 500 Veterans Blvd, Bryson City, NC, US, 28713 / Phone: (828) 488-0326

Recently we were shocked to learn of the closing of the Topoco Lodge (near Robbinsville.) For the last nine straight years our Deals Gap K12 Rally has been held there. So what to do? Well thanks to the quick action of our bud, Tim (aka..Cbnfvr over at www.I-BMW.com) an alternative site has been booked. The 2009 Deals Gap K12 rally will be held in Bryson City, NC at the Ridge Top Motel and Campground. This'll be the 10th anniversary of the most sacred K12 gathering. This motel won't hold us all, so make plans now! This'll be the last K12 / K13 Rally of 2009, my friends.

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How-To-Survive On A Motorcycle

We have (1) new contribution this month ..Woohoo!! Check out #147, contributed by
Lizard, organizer of Tucson Motorcycle Riders in Tucson Arizona

Could these tips save your life? Dare you NOT look?

If you'd like to help others by contributing a How-To-Survive On A 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.

Pirates Lair Sacred Archives

We get a lot of requests for specific articles and/or reviews I've written in the past. Rather than fry my aging brain trying to remember where they are on our multi-thousand page website.. I have decided to list the "worthy" ones here. Most of the links are to past newsletters.. Some are to full web articles. Remember, I'm no expert on anything except perhaps cunnilingus so the opinions within the archives are only my own. Saavy?

BMW How-To Section

We have a new offering this month from Sir Vince in Central Ca...
Check out his How-To Fix the Sloppy Shifter on your BMW K1200S / K1200R / K1200R Sport. It's the first listing on the page. . Thx Vince. Well done.

Picture at right Courtesy of Sports Illustrated photographer Walter Iooss, Jr. / Model: Ms Melissa Haro

Click For Larger Image.. If You Want a Chub..

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Pirates Lair Cheesy Newsletters .. Past Issues