Topic: Breva 1100
BREVA 1100 UPDATE..
Now in to my fourth week of ownership and 1500 miles covered. So officially ‘run in’ but I am still being a little restrained most of the time and still slowly working up to the ‘red line’ only intermittently playing with the higher revs. The bike continues to enthuse and impress me, and many others. Friend’s keep spotting ‘nice little touches’ they hadn’t before such as the Guzzi badge in the rear light cluster.
One thing I didn’t think to mention with my initial impressions is the quietness of the engine. Only occurred to me the other day just how quiet the engine is, no valve clatter or tappet noise – as quiet as a Japanese machine, which of course many Guzzi owners will bemoan – but not me.
The engine continues to become increasingly free and smooth. There is very occasionally what seems like a bit of hesitation on acceleration but I wouldn’t describe it as any form of ‘flat spot’ – in fact I might just be imagining it.
My panniers finally arrived just yesterday and I fitted them last night. First pleasant surprise was what they contained. I had read of ‘cloth’ linings and thought this meant that the inside of the panniers were lined? In fact what was meant was that the panniers came with a pair of removable inner bags. Neat shoulder bag types with the Moto Guzzi logo. As useful as they undoubtedly are I had never bothered with my BM panniers as they were an extra and not cheap at around ?80! So again impressed! The panniers themselves look smaller than the more bulbous BMW ones I had previously and don’t look big enough to take a full-face helmet but do. I like them, very neat and stylish. The little Guzzi emblem that forms part of the side protectors would look better in the red to match those on the bike – but that’s a personal thing and many others would think it perhaps overkill.
Fitting was not a great problem and for once the accompanying instructions quite useful. I did seem to be ‘two bolts short of a pannier set’ but found some stainless allen bolts which did the job perfectly. I made one minor mistake when fitting them. The lower locking mechanism, which locate on each footrest hanger come complete with anti theft bolts (the type which at the specified torque snap of their heads). Presumably without these it is possible to unbolt them and take off the panniers. I was in two minds about fitting them but decided I would and stupidly also decided I would use one for the tax disc holder (yes I know it’s meant to be at the front of the bike but there was nowhere I didn’t feel looked unsightly) and when the head duly snapped off I realised I couldn’t remove the tax disc holder. Given that these invariably rust and become a mess I can’t now remove it! I’ve already thought of how I can solve this when the time comes so not a big drama – more an indication of my rapidly declining cognitive abilities! The silencer also has to be lowered just over an inch. Not enough to affect ground clearance but the plate to accomplish this looks rather cheap and a little shoddy so I may polish it or have it chromed. The hardest job of all was removing the rear exhaust rubber stop from the centre stand as this is replaced by a smaller one because of the lowering of the silencer.
The panniers need a little adjustment before everything is finally tightened but basically an easy job. The upper rails fit very neatly, and with the panniers off don’t look out of place. The lower locking points are hardly graceful but okay. The third element I am not so happy with. This comprises a steadying bar attached to the rear
mudguard and help to support the panniers at the bottom rear. They rather spoil the overall look of the bike with the panniers are off and I don’t like them. To me they look rather superfluous as well and I suspect it won’t be too long, as the panniers
appear no less rock solid without them that I try without? We’ll see. Once I’d read the instructions properly – duh!! – I found that the panniers locate on and come off very smoothly and easily and the opening and shutting mechanism is a breeze. I’ve used them a few times now – for the sake of using them rather from need I must admit - and find them un-intrusive, very well sealed and definitely up to the job.
The ONLY disappointment so far is the dis-colourisation of the down pipes. I’d
noticed on the two demonstrators I’d seen that this was an issue and now mine is noticeably and rapidly becoming as bad. I am not talking about the ‘bluing and bronzing’ of the stainless – that I don’t mind. What I am not impressed with is the ‘liver spot’ rusting effect that is really starting to take hold and looks very unsightly and really spoils the look of the bike. The bike has yet to see rain in the good weather we’ve been having so that is not a factor. The stainless system on my BM never had this problem and after 60000+ miles still looked pretty good. I’ve not paid a lot of attention to more recent Guzzis I must admit so am unsure if this is a common outcome? Any remedies?
Just discovered a few new facts about the Breva. It is practically impossible to put on centre stand with a flat rear tyre!!! Out on a run yesterday evening and it felt like the bike was running rough. Tickover seemed erratic and engine didn't feel right?? Went another half mile or so and suspected front end puncture as front end felt odd. Turned out when I stopped rear tyre was going down. Managed to ride to a nearby garage by which time the tyre was practically flat. Tried pumping it up and the air was coming out as quickly as going in and found a large round hole which the air was fair whistling out of. Fortunately, had my old BM tubeless tyre repair kit. Unfortunately, didn't have a clue how to use it, Fortunately, had an instruction sheet with it. Unfortunately,didn't have my glasses to read the very small print in the fading light - but we got there eventually and limped home. So 1700 miles and more expense - new tyre if not repairable (and even then never used a repaired tyre - not sure if I want to?)!! Also haven't a clue on the torque setting for the rear wheel bolts - in fact until tomorrow night, haven't a clue how the wheel is attached!! Yes, had checked the tyre before setting off. I suspect whatever caused the puncture had happened just minutes before I realised something wasn't right.
Update - wheel off, as you'd expect an easy operation. Worked out the torque setting by trial and error. As silencer and wheel come off so easily I'll probably do in future so as part of more detailed cleaning regime as some parts at rear not easy to get to. Wheel is definitely much, much lighter than the rear wheel from the BMW I had before.
David Owen Davies