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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was riding next to an older one the other day. I've always admired the BMW's for their mechanical prowess, but never found them all that attractive. There's a few that i've seen that i thought were cool but for the most part i don't think i would buy one.

The thing that is interesting to me is the motor. Why are the cylinders horizontal as opposed to somewhat vertical, like almost all other manufacturers? It seems to be a tried and true design. I guess Ural does something similar. It just seems that gravity would eventually have an effect on the wear of the rings, pistons, cylinders. Do they suffer from uneven wear? I know they run forever, and people praise them to be one of the best bikes you can get.

Why for? Anybody ride one or have experience working on them?
Just curious...thanks.
 

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i agree, the old ones are pretty interesting. i think they look decent until i see those cylinders hangin' way out there. probably something that has to grow on you to love. anyhow, my uncle was pretty hardcore into bmws back in the day & he used to work at a b'mer shop. he said the two main reasons the motor was formatted that way was to get the cylinders out in the air so they stayed cool & to keep the center of gravity low so they were easy to handle.
 

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I love my 72 R75/5 Toaster.The reason they last so long is the cylinders have chrome plated bores.The cylinders go out to the side because BMW was an airplane engine company first.The pilot wouldn't have been able to see through the engine if the cylinders went the other way.I agree that they might look funny but don't knock them until you ride one.They are excellent bikes.
 

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Oops forgot to mention the BMW emblem (the blue and white circle) represents their history.It's a propeller.
 

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The only problem with BMW's lasting so long is that used ones in my price range have a trillion or so miles on them. I had a great relationship with an R100/7. Despite the fact that the bike needed some serious work and had in excess of 100K miles, it never let me down. I sold it to a friend and it dropped an exhaust valve head within a day of his owning it, taking out much of the top end with it. He doesn't hate me, and wouldn't take any money from me. Good guy.

I don't know why gravity would increase the wear. The only thing that scared me was when I was splitting lanes on the highway. I always had to keep an eye on the heads to make sure they weren't going to clip cars. I like to keep my eyes forward vigilantly when doing that, and the wide engine kept me distracted.

It was my wife's favorite bike, and now she wants her own Guzzi - like a Boxer but with the cylinders reaching slightly toward the sky.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Wow...good info.

I was reading "Zen and the art of Motorcycle Maintenance" years ago and the guy was riding a BMW. Also had a buddy who raced dirtbikes and his dad rode a BMW. He was also a race car driver (old Porsches) and always said BMW made the best bikes around. So i've always been intrigued by them.
Good stuff...thanks for the links too.

Anybody got pics of cool beemers?
 

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Ryno said:
I was reading "Zen and the art of Motorcycle Maintenance" years ago and the guy was riding a BMW.
Random info from my brain/warehouse of semi-useless trivia. Robert Pirsig, the author of that book, was riding a Honda CB305 Superhawk. His buddy was riding a BMW. It doesn't say anywhere in the book what Pirsig was riding, but I think I may have heard it in an interview. God, I fucking hate that book. Many, many pages of intellectual masturbation. To each his own. Here's the most beautiful BMW ever made, a Rennsport racebike. These bikes give me an excitement that's almost sexual. Gotta go take a cold shower now.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Haha!
Well, it shows you how much attention i was paying to who was riding what. I knew one of em had a BMW. I couldn't even remember the authors name so you can tell how fond i was of the book. Thanks for the correction.
And that IS a killer BMW by the way...

Sporticus said:
Random info from my brain/warehouse of semi-useless trivia. Robert Pirsig, the author of that book, was riding a Honda CB305 Superhawk. His buddy was riding a BMW. It doesn't say anywhere in the book what Pirsig was riding, but I think I may have heard it in an interview. God, I fucking hate that book. Many, many pages of intellectual masturbation. To each his own. Here's the most beautiful BMW ever made, a Rennsport racebike. These bikes give me an excitement that's almost sexual. Gotta go take a cold shower now.
 

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Sporticus said:
Random info from my brain/warehouse of semi-useless trivia. Robert Pirsig, the author of that book, was riding a Honda CB305 Superhawk. His buddy was riding a BMW. It doesn't say anywhere in the book what Pirsig was riding, but I think I may have heard it in an interview. God, I fucking hate that book. Many, many pages of intellectual masturbation. To each his own. Here's the most beautiful BMW ever made, a Rennsport racebike. These bikes give me an excitement that's almost sexual. Gotta go take a cold shower now.
ohhh yeah, come on funny feeling.thats nice!
 

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i like the BMW dual sports, but they are just too high priced for me to go fuck it up like id want to, i was looking at a f650 today here in europe and it is cool, didnt ride it thought. the gs1200s (i think they are what the new ones are called) are freaking huge though, i cant get into them much.
 

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Ive always heard that the engine was that configuration because its the optimal layout for a twin. The timing is perfectly even, one cylinder fires right after the other. I know british twins have an interesting firing sequence, not sure about any others.
 

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I saw a BMW with huge Heinrich tank when I was a kid, and not smart enough to know what i was looking. That image and the guy riding it, who explained what it was, is stuck permanently in my head. I've wanted one of these tanks for an eternity, mainly so I can make some fiberglass copies of it and sell them. I was close once, but the tank owner back out - concerned I might wreck his beautiful tank making the mold. Here a Heinrich mounted on a /2. Actually, I've been told it's a fiberglass copy of an original. Beautiful nonetheless.

 

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I saw this one in New Ulm 2006, I can't remember what size it was but I know it's less than a 500cc. I got on this bad boy and it felt good.

 

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I ride a Beemer, and I love it. I rode Harleys before they became cool to the gold chainers so I've been on both sides.(I'd love to find a pan head) As a mechanic I worked on VW's and Porsches. Those engines produce a lot of horses for what they are.
When I was young and riding with my group of undesirable buds, we always respected the Beemer guys for being road riders and not just a guy with a bike. Most Beemer people are hardcore riders and put tons of miles on their bikes. I'd like to find an older one so I can cut it up and play with it.
I'm done now:D
****
 
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