The “OMG what have I done” job
For a long time I had plans to practice removing and replacing the sparkplugs on my BMW F800GS, in preparation for the big trip (click here for more info on our 13 month trip).
Close to two years ago I helped my good friend to change the oil on his KTM 990. We laughed at the saying that “if you wanna change the oil on a BMW you’ll drink two beers while doing the job, but if you want to change the oil on a KTM you’ll drink a case of beer.. The oil change took half a day on his KTM. Well, I laughed, and Andreas grumbled. Today however I got a bit of karma handed to me..
It turns out that if you want to (or need to) change the sparkplugs on a BMW F800GS you come very close to disasembling the entire bike. After the job is completed I now realize that the great engineers at BMW started the asembly prosess by one guy holding the sparkplugs, and then another asembling the entire bike around them…
So this morning I did the final little pieces of research and then happily skipped down into the garage underneath my building, my home away form home. Just before I left the Apartment, Hotstuff aka Tonje, comented on the oilfilter removal tool that just arrived form Wunderlich. “Ooo what a nice color… what is it?” Great…
Anyways, I brought the nice-color-doodaa down to the garage and got started.. Below you can see the bike as it was.. I had just removed the saddle. “Why”, you may ask. “Are the sparkplugs underneath the seat?” Surely no, as will be the case for a great many things I had to take off the bike. Just pealing off the layers like a two-wheeled onion. With a GPS. And spare fuel tanks..
So I followed the instructions I found on the BMW mechanic handbook. Step 1 ; Remove saddle. Check. Step 2; Remove the beak.. Really? Remove the beak, waaaaaay in front of everything. In order to remove the sparkplugs, that surely must be in or around the engine somewhere? Now my pride and joy looks just like a retarded seal.
Next step was to take off the fairing on both sides. But noo,- not that simple. Because in order to do that I had to take off the upper crashbars. Have I mentioned that I perviously mounted the extra heavy duty adventure crashbars from Wunderlich? … Grumble..
Then came battery removal, all kinds of wires and hoses, and the entire air-intake and airfilter housing. Any sparkplugs in there? Nooo sir.
At this point I really had to take a step back, and said out aloud (yes I do talk to myself in the garage while working on the bikes) “OMG what have I done? How the heck am I gonna get all this back the way it was? Anyone got a AAA-card?” No one answered, but at this point my fiance came into my domain (well, it’s really the garage we shared by about 30 other people..) with coffe and lunch. Life was suddenly much better..
And true to form, she looked around at the disaster area with parts everywhere, spotted the little spark plug tool from Wunderlich. “Ooh there’s another of those great-colored parts.. What is it?”..
Pulling out the HT coil with this little great colored doodaa was a lot easier than expected. Which is about the only thing all day that was easier than expected..
Fun fact; the pipe that is used in order to actually loosen the spark plugs can also be used to loosen the front axle. I know ’cause I tried. Also, see how long it is? Even after all the stuff I took off this two wheeled onion, I still need a foot-long tool to reach into the belly of the beast in order to get the spark plugs out.
TADAAA! Spark plug successfully removed. Very happy! An then I remembered that I had to put everything back together again..
Just to complicate matters I decided that this was a good time to mount the reusable airfilters from Touratech. Turned out A-OK. I hope this is a good idea. This way we don’t have to bring extra airfilter for the 4-ish months we’ll be driving through South and Cenral America on our trip..
One cup of coffe and a lot of bolts and nuts later, the job was complete.
Check out the video below for proof of life! The engine runs perfectly after all I put it through. Very happy now!