Tag Archives: vintage BMW motorcycles

1972 BMW R60/5

screen-shot-2016-09-21-at-12-19-48-pm

I once had a friend who was so into BMW that I think he applied for German citizenship!? But he ended up simply restoring them and riding old Beemers all over the Western US. He even convinced me to buy one and in all honesty I loved it. I sold it a few years later after about 50,000 miles and every now and then I wish still had it.screen-shot-2016-09-21-at-12-12-49-pm

The bike I found on ebay today is an R60/5 model, nice bike. Here comes todays history lesson…at one time BMW was considering getting out of the motorcycle business but in 1964 the decision came to stay. They (BMW) hired a man from Porsche to design the next generation motorcycles.  In 1970 the /5 series replaced the /2 with a number of improvements and changes.  The Boxer engine remained with some changes but the rest of the bike was virtually all new. More horsepower, lighter weight and… here are the BIGGIES (insert drum roll here) a 12 volt electrical system and an electric starter!!! They did keep the kick starter for the traditionalist and I think, just in case the new electric starter dscreen-shot-2016-09-21-at-12-08-54-pmecided not participate that day.

Even with all the improvements it wasn’t perfect. Yes it had a higher cruising speed but getting there took more work. For one, just getting the bike rolling took some effort because of a heavy clutch and a tall first gear. The power came on at a little over 4000 rpm where as the /2 model got into it’s power between 2 and 3000 rpm, which considering BMW was still using a 4 speed you were working the gear shift lever a lot. The brakes were described as adequate. Now remember, this showed up when the Japanese had advanced to disc brakes so by comparison, yeah the BMW brakes were just adequate. The bike handled a lot better than it’s predesesor with more cornering clearance due to lifting the cylinders.The R60/5 was , and is, a very capable touring bike, it’s quite comfy even two up and has the power to get the two of you down the road.

screen-shot-2016-09-21-at-12-04-23-pmSo, Back to the one I found on ebay this morning. A very clean R60/5. The seller it has 21K miles but also says the speedo/odo doesn’t work so the mileage could be in question. It has some mechanical work done and the seller says it runs smooth. The R60/5 is in beautiful unrestored condition and the starting price is not unreasonable.

If your’e looking for classic BMW I think bike is well working at. Click on the link below for more info and more pictures. Oh and by the way, the classic ‘Toaster’ tank came out in ’72. It is very cool.

<a target=”_self” href=”http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?icep_ff3=2&pub=5574881880&toolid=10001&campid=5336495545&customid=1972+BMW+R60%2F5&icep_item=131940490340&ipn=psmain&icep_vectorid=229466&kwid=902099&mtid=824&kw=lg”&gt;screen-shot-2016-09-21-at-11-52-16-am

screen-shot-2016-09-21-at-11-52-29-am

screen-shot-2016-09-21-at-11-52-46-am1972 BMW R60/5</a><img style=”text-decoration:none;border:0;padding:0;margin:0;” src=”http://rover.ebay.com/roverimp/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?ff3=2&pub=5574881880&toolid=10001&campid=5336495545&customid=1972+BMW+R60%2F5&item=131940490340&mpt=%5BCACHEBUSTER%5D”&gt;

1974 BMW R90S

Screen Shot 2015-11-14 at 5.26.41 PMA few years ago I bought a 1976 R90S that had been sitting in a garage under a blanket, a piece of carpet and a few boxes for 17 years.It had only 15,000 miles on it. I got it for a song. It needed the standard stuff…all the fluids changed, new tires, clean the carbs, go through the wiring, new battery flush the brake system and get the mouse nest out of the air box.
After all that it was time for a shakedown run, a couple hundred miles ought to do it…as long as I had my AAA card. Well, the ride went perfect and I was in love with my BMW. It did everything I asked of it and with no muss or fuss. The next week the missus and I headed off to tour Utah and again, all was well.Screen Shot 2015-11-13 at 8.02.08 AM
Over the few years that I had the R90 I had put about 70,000 miles on it with almost no issues. Easy maintenance, comfortable for two up riding, with a couple of suspension mods it handled pretty great, but then one night an evil spirit (Tanqueray Martinis and my friend (?) Erik) convinced me to sell it and buy an Adventure bike.
Well, word got out that I had sold the BMW and instantly I got an email from a good friend telling me that I needed to seek the help of a mental health professional. First I sold a Ducati Darmah, then my R90S all to buy a Buell Ulysses? They were right, I did need help. Do I regret selling my R90S? yes. Do I like my Buell? Yes. Do I love it ? No. I’d really rather have my R90S back…or something similar. Ah well. Hindsight is always 20/20.
The R90S showed up on these shores in 1974, at that time is was basically a bored out R75 with a few suspension upgrades, different carbs, a higher compression ratio and very cool bodywork including one of the most beautiful paint jobs and a nice tight little bikini fairing up front.
BMW really wanted to upgrade or modernize its image and the S model was the ideal platform and the best place to showcase that…the racetrack. Enter Reg Pridmore. Canadian racer Reg Pridmore took the Butler and Smith (the US distributors of BMW at the time) to the first ever AMA Superbike Championship in 1976. Fuddy Duddy BMW was now a very serious racer…The R90S is not your fathers BMW.There is a vast amount of good racing history about the R90S in that period and reading it makes me wish I had mine back.Screen Shot 2015-11-14 at 5.28.31 PM
The photo above is three BMW’s leading a race. These bikes and even the street version are no slouches.
I found an especially nice S model today on ebay that is truly a fly /buy and ride/ Well, maybe the ride part might be a bit sketchy…only because of the weather across the country. Hey wait, you’re a good rider…some snow, a tornado or two and golf ball size hail won’t stop you. Will it?
Screen Shot 2015-11-14 at 6.12.14 PM
Honestly, this is a bike ready to ride. A lot of new parts, some nice additions (the Ohlins shocks and the Corbin seat) The price at this time seems reasonable, but we’ll see. It is a fabulous motorcycle. If you were ever looking for the perfect vintage sport touring bike, the R90S is without question the best you will ever find.
Click on the pics below for more pictures and more info

Screen Shot 2015-11-13 at 7.52.54 AM
Screen Shot 2015-11-13 at 7.53.35 AM
Screen Shot 2015-11-13 at 7.53.08 AM
Screen Shot 2015-11-13 at 7.53.23 AM1974 BMW R90S

1976 BMW R90S

Picture 8Well, the time has come to sell my R90S. I love this bike but I think that somebody may love it a bit more.
I bought the bike a few years ago from my son’s father in law. It had been sitting for seventeen years under some boxes of vintage radios, a piece of old carpet and a couple of blankets and I wanted it. We struck a deal and I brought it home.

A good tune up, new tires and off I went to see my friend Bill Stermer (who wrote the book on airhead BMW’s and is a writer for Rider Magazine). We rode our favorite road and at the end of the ride he gave the bike the ‘two thumbs up’ and I was happy. Since that time, my wife and I have traveled California and the Southwest US on the BMW and it has never let us down. It is a great motorcycle. But, like most of us motorcyclists, we always lust for something else…new, old, or just different from what we have now. That is where I am at now.

So, here’s the deal. The bike is a 1976 R90S with 36,572 miles on the clock. It has a 1977 R100RS fairing, makes for very comfortable riding. I put new shocks on it from Bobs BMW on it about 10k miles ago and replaced the fork springs. The carbs were rebuilt and full tune up done about 2K miles ago. All the fluids have just been changed (engine oil and filter,trans,drive shaft and differential,front brake fluid). New throttle and clutch cables.

I put a ‘Brown’s’ sidestand on it because the stock BMW sidestand is a nightmare. The bike has the full complete BMW tool kit plus more tools and ignition parts, a spare throttle cable and a genuine BMW tank cover. Factory BMW saddle bags (Krauser) and the small luggage rack in place of the simple grab handle, the chrome grab handle comes with it too. I have a set of fork boots that I didn’t install that go with the bike.

What the bike needs is a new rear tire and the fairing needs a paint job, and the windscreen is cracked…that’s all.

It’s a great bike, runs perfectly and can be yours for $6000. R90S models with twice the mileage sell for more, this is a good deal. I will deliver within 100 miles of zip code 93015 for an additional $100. If you want the bike shipped I can help your shipper but all arrangements are up to you.
If you have any questions or would like more pictures just send me an e-mail paul@themotoworld.com

This R90 has been a great friend and now it needs to be a great friend to someone else.
DSC_3453
DSC_3456
DSC_3458
DSC_3460