I wouldn’t quite call it an obsession, but ever since I took delivery of my BMW F800 GS, I’ve been searching for a solution to carry a bicycle on it. I’ve considered cobbling something together with old rack parts and U-bolts. I’ve considered riding up to Logan and having Jake make me a prototype of his famous Jake Rack which I wrote about in a previous post (here’s a link to the Jake Rack post). But every now and again, I would see a rider in the Park City area riding the same black and yellow F800 GS with a Yakima bike tray and wheelfork on it. He was usually going the other way on the freeway, slipping away before I could get a good look at the set-up. I had friends who would say “hey I saw you this weekend on your BMW, the one with the bike rack, right?” I was starting to feel like I lived in some parallel universe. Then it happened. In the closing miles of a serendipitous bicycle ride that went by the new Trailside Bicycle Park, I saw the bumble bee with the bike rack in the parking lot. The owner was obviously doing a session in the park, because his shoes were down on the ground near his sidestand. I didn’t have my iPhone with me, but my riding partner shot a few images for me. My intent was to study the design and maybe fabricate something similar, but then a little discreet sticker caught my eye: Real Tyme Engineering. There was a phone number. I was in business.
The next day, I called the number and spoke with Jim Harvey. Jim is a one-man engineering and fabrication shop based in Salt Lake City. He informed me that his bike rack kit for the BMW F800 GS was in fact an in stock item which could be purchased from his website, Globetrottin.com. I explained that I wanted to retain my Touratech Luggage Rack, and Jim was very helpful in offering to take a look at my set-up and help fit some longer bolts. We planned to meet the following Monday so I could bring my bike down and see if we could make it work.
The rest is history, but I’ll tell you a few things about Jim and his rack kit.
- Jim Rides a KTM 990, and it is well-equiped with a few other parts he has designed and fabricated, such as skid plate, engine and fairing crash bars, and rear luggage racks.
- The bike rack kit for the F800 GS utilizes the original 4 mounting bolts on the tail of the bike. With a longer set of recessed flat head bolts, I had no problems mounting the kit on top of the spacers that come with the Touratech luggage plate, but under the plate itself.
- To mount a bike on your bike, you will still need a few more things, such as a Yakima Viper bike tray, or a Rocky Mounts bike tray. You’ll also need about 18-20″ of round Yakima crossbar. Anything shorter, and you might have a tough time getting a wheelfork on there. Oh yeah, you’ll need a wheelfork.
- The Yakima Viper works really well because the head of the tray that clamps the front fork of your bike is really small and fits well in the recess of the Real Tyme set-up. But I suspect an older model Thule or Rocky Mounts would work well too.
- Jim has also designed a bike rack kit for later model R1200 GS bikes. Call him up, if you are looking for a rack for a different bike, maybe he can help: 801-913-4116.
I’ll admit, when all is said and done, it looks kind of crazy to have a bicycle hanging off the back of your moto. Forget about your pillion seat, there’s no room for a passenger. In fact, doing head checks in traffic is interesting because all I see is my Campagnolo Super Record 11 speed shift/brake levers in my peripheral vision. But the rack is rock solid even at freeway speeds, and opens up a lot of possibilities for two-wheeled adventures. 2 wheels squared.
Deal O’ The Day
Words I’ve Heard
"I'm not a businessman. I'm a business, man." --Jay-Z
"The only thing keeping us from going is leaving." --Ewan Mcgregor
"Adventures suck, when you're having them." -- Anonymous Rally Car Driver
"It is, absolutely, without question, unequivocally, about the bike. Anyone who says otherwise is obviously a twatwaffle."--RULE #4, Velominati.com
"Always carry a flagon of whiskey in case of snakebite and furthermore always carry a small snake."--W.C. Fields