The saga of my '15 M70

Woe unto you that bought the first model year of a major remake, perhaps this section can help address any 2014 and later model Ural "imperfections". Here's a special section for folks with the latest rigs to discuss 2014 and later model-related topics such fuel injection, 3-wheel disc brakes, hydraulic steering dampers, spin-on oil filters and other anomalies that don't belong on true Russsian motorcycle ;-P We've gone from using big hammers and greasy wrenches to needing computers and Ouija boards in order to fix our rigs.
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Please keep this section specific to issues pertaining to 2014 and later models such as fuel injection, sidecar and rear disc brakes and so forth. Ask general or non-2014 and later specific questions in the main Hammerin' & Wrenchin' section.
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BigJames
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The saga of my '15 M70

Post by BigJames » Mon May 13, 2019 11:38 pm

Short DIsclaimer:
This is the one and only rant I'll do on this subject after not complaining through the whole mess. IMWA did they best they could, many mea culpas offered, problem handled the only way it could be without lawyers, a decent, seasoned, well trained tech was the answer not nastiness. Nasty gets one nasty, even if it gets results.

Now the long short story:
Long story short (trust me, this long a$$ post is the short version), bought in August '16, remember me lusting for the "pretty Ural"? Made 18 Payments whilst down, 13 in a row. Problem 1, blew out all front gaskets and cooked fuel pump on 1st trip, had flat tire on way home, you've probably seen the video, then it got worse. Took it to local (and eventual selling) dealer for some weird problem and it was discovered my lower end bearings were toast, known issue with '15's. Ok, IMWA stepped up in a large way with a replacement engine, the same week. Unfortunately no deed goes unpunished. Something was not right. At 55 would fall all over itself and not run right until over 60, then took off like a rocket. Everyone thought engine. Sergey built original, back in it went, along with the same issue. Sergey inspected other engine nothing wrong with it. It is happily running in another bike by now I hope. Problem persisted, local dealer could not determine issue. Wrote IMWA and said come and get it, I'm done. Politely, no cussing, no ranting, explained problem and asked when they could get it. To my amazement, they did and off it went. After a back and forth with their service guys at the repairing dealer got this:

"Let me tell you a story.
Once upon a time a Ural rider with many years’ experience purchased a
new Ural. After riding it a bit noticed some engine noise and low and
behold the end repair was to replace the engine. In the process of
doing so the tech broke the left coil/ spark plug wire and instead of
replacing it decided it was ok to just glue it back together. This was
not a good decision because afterwards much time and money has been
spent to find a running issue. The Ural was finally sent to a far away
land where a wise old tech found the bad coil and now the Ural will
live happily ever after, The End!"

Close, owner of local dealer identified the lower end issue...tech later identified as most likely suspect, documented as the tech who installed the engine, is long since gone for reasons I cannot go into, but what you are guessing is probably close. I even told them I thought it was a bad coil, damn. I figure this FUBAR has cost IMWA almost the cost of the bike when 2 engines, many other parts and labor get added up. Story not quite over, bike fixed, running great, not coming back. I simply do not trust it. Will make someone other than me a fine ride. More on that in Virtual Watering Hole next week. Not going to identify any of the dealers involved, no point, problem is gone. Lead tech at local dealer there has learned a very valuable lesson as has the dealer - listen to the damned customer. Techs at repairing dealer discovered that the computer even finds stupid stuff. If you know the dealers involved, please keep it to yourself, no point making them any more miserable than they are and others have had better experiences, others not so much.

If you know anyone who has ever owned a bike shop you know it is just about impossible to find new tech at small shop money who is worth a $#!+. My local dealer had a great tech, a$$hole in a car kiilled him. Support your local dealer, if they try hard enough there will be times they don't suck. If they prosper they can afford a good tech, you want that. Live near a known really good dealer, spend lots of money there, you are a lucky person and they need to stay in business..
BigJames
19 Ural Gear Up
11 Ural Retro (108K and counting)
95/79 Bural Sportsman (Myrtle)
88 HD FLHS Watsonian Cambridge (232K and counting)
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VWK75S
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Re: The saga of my '15 M70

Post by VWK75S » Tue May 14, 2019 5:09 am

BigJames wrote:
Mon May 13, 2019 11:38 pm
listen to the damned customer.
Very important advice, :thumbsup: after troubleshooting control systems for over 30 years one needs to listen and interpret what a operator is telling you. :feelsgood:
John
The Ural's made Maine a much bigger state.

2009 GearUp 145,000kms
2007 Retro 20,000kms
1991 VWK75S 110,000miles

rougaroo
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Re: The saga of my '15 M70

Post by rougaroo » Tue May 14, 2019 7:57 am

Couple of things -

BigJames - kudos to your philosophical approach. Water flows, $#!+ happens, it's over. Too many folks keep carrying the ax on stuff forever.

The dealer problem is something IMZ is going to have to address somehow if they ever want to really scale up. A lot of the listed dealers in North America are multi-line dealers that maybe sell one or two a year. Their techs don't get enough practice on one to get good at any of it. The ones that are really good - and we know who they are - deal mostly in Urals and can almost diagnose problems on the phone. The 2019+ bikes should have fewer problems, but IMZ has to live down the unfortunate reputation of the earlier bikes. Inexperienced techs don't help.

And kudos to IMZ for standing up on this. Sounds like they did the right thing a number of times.

Rougaroo
2003 Tourist - lotsa upgrades
2004 Troyka - work in progress

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Re: The saga of my '15 M70

Post by harryball » Tue May 14, 2019 8:58 am

I could tell a similar story. I will say in my case Heindl was the rescuing dealer and Jon posted his own video about it. I had to haul my own rig to him and back. But it is running pretty well now.

I know you went through a lot with your M70 that was not your's or IMWA's fault. Dealer induced issues are a PITA at best and can destroy a customer's trust in IMWA, the dealer and machine.
Last edited by harryball on Tue May 14, 2019 3:55 pm, edited 2 times in total.
---
2017 - cT - "Georgia" My wife's rig.
2017 - M70/Retro, Sigmund. My wife's other rig.
Robert
http://HabitatForBats.org - Give a bat a home!

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Re: The saga of my '15 M70

Post by BigJames » Tue May 14, 2019 9:50 am

As I have said many times, that M70 was a study in no good deed goes unpunished. So many folks tried just to get kicked in the nuts because of a slack tech. I can't even be mad at the dealer where the problem came from! The guy was an MMI graduate, had experience and the credentials that come with it. Hired to help the green tech there already, who is now the lead and getting better. Damn, that takes time. Guess the new hire missed the section on owning up to your mistakes. That one person cost IMWA an insane amount of money. if I had bitched the entire time, IMWA's reputation would have taken a hit and the ADV folks would have jumped all over it and you know how I feel about that, the dealer whose reputation was FINALLY getting better would have taken a major hit, and almost cost IMWA one helluva good customer. I was already looking at Triumph and sidecar to replace the M70. That would have been a one way, not gonna come back trip. If your a dealer and read this, when you hire a tech, call the employment references and REALLY find about who you are hiring, please.. I'm getting too old for this $#!+.

And John, the dealer where the problem was not figured out said the exact same thing...he is beyond pi$$ed.

ilya, you listening? A bunch of us are approaching the age we plan on retiring, but young enough to not really want to quit working if it is something we like. Face it, some of us know the bikes as well if not better than some of the dealers and techs! May be it is time for a roving dealer rep, going to have to do it eventually. I would be happy to do it, there are several tons more qualified than me who would or hire a youngin well versed in the ways of the Ural. Something needs to be done if IMZ expects to even come close to what they once were.
BigJames
19 Ural Gear Up
11 Ural Retro (108K and counting)
95/79 Bural Sportsman (Myrtle)
88 HD FLHS Watsonian Cambridge (232K and counting)
51 HD Servicar

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Re: The saga of my '15 M70

Post by harryball » Tue May 14, 2019 10:35 am

Interesting related side note. One of our UDFs this past trip was from a previous Ural owner. He had purchased new, traded it in 6 months because he "didn't have the strength" to ride it. He was particularly surprised my wife was riding and that we had put almost 30,000 miles on Urals, on the highway no less.

Long story short, he found it pulled to the right HARD and went through a pusher in less than 1000 miles. He was not an "online" kind of guy, had no access to a community he never knew existed (us guys here) and the dealer told him that was normal, it's a Ural. Well, he took a bath trading it and has advised countless people (his words) to avoid Urals unless you are young, very strong and like buying tires.

That is a dealer problem. The rig was obviously not set up right and the dealer either didn't know, care or (worse) intentionally maneuvered they guy into a trade to the dealer's advantage. I recognized the dealer, have been there and am not surprised by the story. How many anti-ural cheerleaders has this one dealer created?

I agree, IMWA's biggest issue right now is dealers. A roving highly trained Ural tech (or three) would be an excellent idea. They could even host "new rider workshops" for new owners to attend.
---
2017 - cT - "Georgia" My wife's rig.
2017 - M70/Retro, Sigmund. My wife's other rig.
Robert
http://HabitatForBats.org - Give a bat a home!

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Re: The saga of my '15 M70

Post by BigJames » Tue May 14, 2019 11:57 am

you mean something like this?



How many of us have done this talk at rallies or parking lots when we find a confused or exasperated new Uralista. Why don't all dealers do this? Because they either don't care (where is the profit in it?) or are not competent to do so. We've had folks come to our rally with poorly set up rigs, Urals and other allegedly professional builds, they all left with properly set up ones. No excuse for that, none, especially when a bunch of folks in a campground with riding tool kits could fix it.

Regardless of what one thinks of Ural NE, they run a Ural dealer, right along side their exotic (and sometimes really weird) business, as an equal part of the business and not a quirky sideline and do it as it should be done. Is it cheap to do it that way, hell now, is it smart, hell yes.
BigJames
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11 Ural Retro (108K and counting)
95/79 Bural Sportsman (Myrtle)
88 HD FLHS Watsonian Cambridge (232K and counting)
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Re: The saga of my '15 M70

Post by mattzahr » Tue May 14, 2019 12:58 pm

BigJames,

Could not agree with your suggestion more - almost every mfg. (car or m'cycle) has something similar to perform this type function. It is not inexpensive by any means, but what determines success of the marque more than perceived value (be that reliability, resale/residual, or performance).

Word of mouth only goes so far - look at Alfa Romeo these days.....they have a heck of a new line, but car folks remember the "old days" when they were not reliable.

Back on track - IMWA has made great strides to make this a more "mainstream" brand concerning reliability - we as a community have been helpful in providing the honest feedback to assist in their success.

Dealer networks are an integral part of this success - without the bedrock of current dealers who eat, sleep, and live IMWA, I believe that we would not have the models available today that we have to choose from. It is nearly impossible these days to have a one line shop and remain in business - unfortunately, that is life - that being said, we as consumers of this brand URAL should be placing emphasis on supporting these businesses as much as individually possible.

A good old fashioned "grass roots" campaign may assist in creating more brand recognition - one of the ways to do this is to (circling back to the original subject) is to get a "Travelling Circus" complete with techs/dealer reps to get the word out at local bike events, car shows, etc.

For example (last tangent and I'll stop) -St. Louis Horseless Carriage Club has a Classic Car Show in Forest Park EVERY year Easter Sunday - I rode my 2016 cT there early to get a looksee at the cars coming in - the event staff opened the gate for me to get to the classic motorcycle area because they thought I was showing my "classic". I had to stop and explain that it was a 2016 with FI and disc brakes - they let me come in anyway and tour around anyway because it "looked cool"....how many other m'cycle brands could claim themselves as an "instant classic"?

Would an International URAL Motorcycle Club be a possibility? Does one already exist?

Thoughts anyone?

Matt
'16 cT - Terracotta aka Orange
SMSgt./1st Sgt., (Ret.)
Proud member of the "Group W Bench"

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