Probably the first thing you want to do after you have connected the GS-911 interface to the motorcycle, is to perform an AutoScan. The AutoScan automatically identifies the control units in your motorcycle and generates a report that lists the VIN number, mileage and I-Levels, as well as the Controller information and fault codes for each control unit.
The report results can be saved or printed. As the report lists the VIN and mileage, we recommend saving these reports for future reference and comparison.
Selecting a Series and Model
From the main screen, select a Series (R, F, K, G, C or S), followed by specific model within the Series you selected. As example, let us assume you selected the R-Series, then you will be presented with the following Model selection:
For the sake of the demonstration, we are going to use the R1200GS Adventure as example in the sections that follow. It should be noted that functions are dependent on the model and type of Control Unit, for instance the F650GS/Dakar will not have exactly the same real-time values, as the F800GS and the Service & Maintenance functions will differ too, as these have very different Control Units!
Once you have selected the R1200GS Adventure, you will be presented with a list of it's possible Control Units. Once again, it should be pointed out that this does NOT necessarily mean that your model has ALL of these Control Units fitted!
On the same Navigation pane that all of the possible Control Units are listed, you might find an entry termed "Special functions". These are generally Service & Maintenance functions that either do not belong a a single Control Unit, or that one would want easier accessible (rather than navigating through all of the Control Units. These "Special functions" are highly dependent on the Model, Series and type of Control Unit. Some "Special functions" are listed below:
- Service reminder (allows you to set the date of your motorcycle, the date of the next service due, and the Odometer reading of the next service due)
- Distance to valve check (for all CAN-bus K- and F-Series models - not really used anymore, since BMW did away with the special check, and incorporated it on the fixed service intervals again)
- Brake wear check (only for the CAN-bus K1200GT model - checking and resetting the Brake-pad Wear Indicator)
Resetting the Service Reminders is a one-button-click procedure. Clicking this button will set the next service values to 365 days on and 10,000km (or 6,000mls if miles are selected as units for distance in the Options section) from the current odometer value. The service reminder will automatically be canceled (after the ignition is cycled) if the new "distance to next service", is more than 1000km from the current odometer reading, and the "date of the next service" is more than one month in the future.
The Service Reminders have 2 variables. The one is the date of next service and the other is the target odometer value. The service reminders will be activated for whichever of these two is reached first.
It should be noted that the date of the motorcycle should be correct. The motorcycle date is automatically compared to that of the PC and if they differ, a warning will be raised. The date of the motorcycle can be set under the special function section too.
Looking at the screen capture above, it shows the current motorcycle information and 2 buttons. Under the current motorcycle data one finds the following:
- Odometer reading of the motorcycle, currently 11,861km in this example
- Motorcycle date as it is saved in the motorcycle's Instrument Cluster. It is critical that this date is correct. The GS-911 software automatically compares this date to that of the PC and raises a warning if they differ.
- Next service due date : This values shows the date on which the next service is due, 09 October 2013 in the example above.
- Next service due at odometer : This value shows the target odometer reading at which the next service is due, 19,298km in the example above.
General (Emergency) functionality
Most Control units follow similar structures. These generally are :
- ECU information
- Read / Clear Fault codes
- Real-time values
- followed by Control Unit specific Service & Maintenance functions that include adaptation resets, calibrations, output tests and models specific functions, such as Idle Actuator Calibration (IAC) and Throttle Body Synchronization as shown in the example screenshots that follow.
The ECU info, Read/Clear Fault codes and Real-time values, are seen as the General functions, and are also referred to as the Emergency functions. Independent of whether you have the Professional or the Enthusiast version of the PC software, these Emergency functions can be used on an UNLIMITED number of motorcycles. Only the Service & Maintenance functions are limited for use on a maximum of 10 motorcycles when using the Enthusiast version (unlimited for the Professional version). The "Professional version" section later on in the User Manual, has more information.
Let's take a closer look at the General/Emergency functions (once again using our '10 R1200GS Adventure as an example).
Read ECU information : shows part numbers, version numbers etc. See the screen capture below for the ECU info of the Engine Control Unit for F800GS example:
Read Fault codes : reads the fault codes and displays their number and meaning in clear text. See the screen capture below for a typical Fault code readout of the Engine Control Unit for the R1200GS Adventure example. Some control units support "Fault code history" as shown in the example below.
Clear Fault codes : this function is used to clear fault codes. It should be noted that fault codes are again read after the command to clear them was successfully issued. This then shows any fault codes that could not be cleared. If any codes are shown, this means that the Control Unit detected that the specific fault was still present in the system (fault was NOT rectified), and the Control Unit could NOT clear the fault. There are NO codes that cannot be cleared... however some have to be rectified (fixed) before they can be successfully cleared... quite obvious... if you think a bout it...
Real-time values : This function shows the "live" data for the Control Unit. Once again this depends a lot on the type of controller as well as the model and series of the motorcycle. See the screen captures below for the real-time values of the Engine Control Unit of our '10 R1200GS Adventure example:
Although the screen captures above depicts only "Input signals" and "Output signals", generally the control units also have "Digital outputs" and "Switch positions". At the top of the Realtime data pane, are 3 buttons, namely logging to CSV, plotting O2 (Lambda) and Plot values. The first one will allow you to log a .CSV (please note this file is semi-colon (";") delimited) file of ALL of the real-time values, so that you can manipulate, graph and study these to your heart's content.
The "Plot O2" button, graphs the Lambda (O2) sensor voltage in real-time. This is a fantastic way of evaluating the function of your Lambda system. Please Note, that the functionality of your Lambda system should ONLY be evaluated once the engine is at operating temperature (around 80 degrees Celsius) - there is absolutely NO point in making conclusions about your lambda system's functionality if the engine has not yet reached operating temperature! Quite the contrary, you will most probably make an incorrect conclusion when evaluating it during it's warm-up phase (Note to the interested reader - there is no harm watching the plot during the warm-up phase. Please feel free to do so, and you will see first hand why one cannot evaluate this functionality during warm-up).
A functional Lambda control system will show a graph that varies around the green reference lines (typically having turning points lower than 200mV and higher than 650mV to 700mV). As our example model has 2 Lambda sensors, you will see both as they are plotted at the same time. This makes for a good comparison between the Lambda sensors. A typical functional Lambda graph is shown below.
Some points to note on evaluating your Lambda graph:
- The higher the value, the richer the mixture.
- Contrary, the lower the value, the leaner the mixture
- a flat line at any level (at operating temperature) depicts a faulty Lambda operation
- jumping from approx. 200 mV to approx. 650/700 mV depicts a correctly functioning Lambda control system
As the Boxer engine of the CAN-bus based R1200 has a Lambda sensor in the header pipe of each cylinder, this can be used to evaluate the functionality of the individual cylinders. For this purpose, we graph the O2 sensor voltages for both cylinder 1 and cylinder 2 on a single graph. Using this method, relative offsets can easily be detected. Below is the screenshot of our R1200GS Adventure.
Service & Maintenance functions
As of (release) version 904, we have introduced Service & Maintenance functionality. This functionality will be enhanced in each future release. To see what functionality is supported in any current release, you should study the Function Chart (linked from the "quick links" section of the website).
Besides the "Special functions" detailed in an earlier section, current service functionality is quite extensive. The functionality depends on the control unit. Naturally a single cylinder F650GS BMSC controller and a CAN-type R1200 BMSK engine controller have vastly different functions. It should be noted that these Service and Maintenance functions do not only pertain to the Engine Control units, but to all other control unit families.
For the BMSK-family Engine control unit on our '10 R1200GS Adventure, the additional service functions (above and beyond the already listed special functions) are:
- Output tests This section allows one to activate various parts that are controlled by the ECU, like the injectors, Fuel pump, Idle actuators, Exhaust valves etc.
- Adaptations The section calibrates, resets or views the adapted values for various parts or sensors. When replacing certain parts or sensors, the previously learned (adapted) values, need to be cleared and in some cases relearned (such as gear position sensor). The software guides the user through these simple procedures.
- Idle Actuator Calibration (for all CAN-bus R1200 models - sets the zero position of both idle actuators, and is one of the requirements to correct poor idle on these specific R1200 models)
- Engine (Throttle body) Synchronization
- Full Service functionality for ABS-N (fitted to single cylinder F650 and C1 motorcycles). This includes Brake Bleed tests for both front and rear circuits. (Support for other ABS systems will follow - see the "GS-911 Roadmap")
Various screenshots are shown below as examples of the Service & Maintenance functions on the Engine controller of our '10 R1200GS Adventure model.
Starting in 2009, we are adding Service & Maintenance functionality to GS-911. Along with this we are differentiating between a GS-911 Enthusiast version and a GS-911 Professional version.
Comparing the Professional and Enthusiast versions
For an up to date comparison between the Enthusiast and Professional versions, see the Professional vs. Enthusiast Comparison table.
The only limitation that the Enthusiast version has, is that the Service Functionality is limited to 10 motorcycles - this is done using each motorcycles unique VIN. This DOES NOT apply to the pre-2009 "General (Emergency) functionality" (Reading ECU info, Reading/Clearing Fault codes and Real-time values). These, you can run on as many motorcycles as you wish.. without the VIN limitation coming into play at all - We don't want to prevent you from helping your stranded buddy at the roadside...
The Enthusiast/Professional differences only affect the PC/Laptop software, as the Service & Maintenance functionality is added ONLY to the PC/Laptop software (i.e. the Mobile software will remain an "Emergency Diagnostic Tool" with the current reading of ECU information, the reading and clearing of Fault codes and Real-time values) and thus remain status quo ( and if that was not clear enough yet.. There is NO VIN LIMIT on the Emergency functionality, hence you can use it on a gazillion motorcycles... ;-) )
For more information on the VIN limitation, please see the VIN limit page.
Upgrading an Enthusiast version to the full Professional version
While the Professional version is of course, aimed at the typical repair shop, the Enthusiast version is clearly aimed at the motorcycle owner who wishes to maintain one or more personal motorcycles, with very little chance that he or she would ever need to maintain more than 10 individual motorcycles. However, the Enthusiast version can be upgrade to a Professional version at any point in time, by clicking the [Upgrade to Professional version] button on the About page of any Enthusiast version and following the clear upgrade instructions.
For upgrade options (from Enthusiast to Professional version) and clear instructions, please see the upgrade information page.