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Old 10-19-2010, 06:25 AM   #1
Sutherngintelmen OP
around the bend
 
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Joined: Mar 2009
Location: ATL
Oddometer: 1,196
R75/5 Buying Questions

Hey,

I'm new to airheads. Have had my eye on 75/5's for a couple of years and gearing up to buy one. It'll be a rider as I'm some ways out from my own Barber.

Been trying to find a check list of pre purchase items with no luck - wondering what resources you gents might point me at.

What should I ask the seller? Things I should look at when face to face with the bike?

Stuff like - carbs, valves (isn't there something about pre-unleaded petrol?) tank work, hell - even knowing it's not a Frankenstein!

Any good books out there?

Many thanks.
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There is a pleasure in the pathed woods, There is a rapture in the smoking pipe, There is chaos, where none intrudes, in the deep dell, with its thrills roar; I love not nature less, but bikes the more. Byron riding.

All pics < 6/30/12 deleted by Apple Now with SmugMug supporting ADV
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Old 10-19-2010, 06:45 AM   #2
jtwind
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Location: Madison WI
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Searching here will get you a number of threads on this question. If you aren't familier with airheads I'd suggest taking someone along who was. In general buying a airheads isn't any different from any other bike. How does it start cold, how does it run, how does it look, how much is it etc. Certainly not rocket science. If you buy a airhead and don't figure on spending some time and money making it right you are often in for a surprise. So for me price is the most important thing because I am often buying a platform to work on.

There is a BMW motorcycle buyers guide out there by motorbooks international. Not definitive but has some good info.
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Old 10-19-2010, 07:10 AM   #3
boxerboy81
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http://www.5united.net/

Might help. Hope so.
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Old 10-19-2010, 08:14 AM   #4
durtwurm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sutherngintelmen
Hey,

.

What should I ask the seller? Things I should look at when face to face with the bike?

Many thanks.
Ask for maintenance records, and if the seller cannot produce them, walk. That is my advice. Documented work is imperative. Unless it is very cheap don't buy it. I know as I've been there.
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Old 10-19-2010, 09:44 AM   #5
MaraBiker
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Don't rush in. Keep a cool head when buying. Hot head can ignore your rational side and agree a sale as quickly as you can say abracadabra. And as previously written "If you aren't familier with airheads I'd suggest taking someone along who was."
Happy hunting
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Old 10-19-2010, 10:03 AM   #6
Renner
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Location: sunny SoCal
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I love my R75/5
If you find one with no maintenance records, rely on everything being worn out (not that it won't run for years in that condition).

Nathan Mende in Watkinsville GA is very knowledgeable: nathan@boxerworks.com

He can introduce you to people that know those bikes and can talk your ear off.
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Old 10-19-2010, 10:21 AM   #7
Sniper X
De Oppresso Liber
 
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Joined: Jul 2006
Location: Central New Mexico, 7420ft above sea level
Oddometer: 33,308
I would not let the lack of maintainence records sway you to NOT buy an Airhead. I would however, allow it to let you feel better about lowballing a bike you think might need more work than you are thinking it needs per the ad.

here's my take on a /5 evaluation.

Ask about the spline lube, if it has been done recently, then good, if not that is something you need to do and it takes trans removal, which requires rear end and drive line removel. A good 4 to 6 hr job for someone who has never done it. BUT that isn't a real bad deal.
]

Ask if factory specified lubricants have been used in the motor, trans, and driveline, and also ask how often they have been done and when they were done last.

Ask if the valves have eben adjusted lately. /5 motors have a distinct sound form the valve covers which sounds like loose valves to a Airhead newby, it is normal for the motor to be PINGY ot TINKY from the valve covers, for some reason, usually the left one is a tad louder than the right....

Ask when the points and timing were done last. Only expect about 15~20k from a fresh set of new factory points.

Ask if the bike has been sitting for a long period of time, it'll need the tank flushed and probably Kreemed, and need the carby's gone thru if it has.

Ask if the bike has anything non stock on it like charging system up grades or upgrades to the ignition system, this is good if so, not bad if not but ask when the alternator brushes were done last or if the bike has any recent maint to the alternator.

When you ride it, the little red lamp on the dash should glow under idle, and go out when the bike is being ridden, make sure you turn the key to poiint to the left (the front of the weird /5 key) so the headlight is on for this red charge lamp test. As you ride, the charge lamp should go out...if not there is a problem with the diode board, or the alternator or regulator.

Make sure all the lights on the gauge cluster work. Make sure the tach and speedo work. Ask about when the brakes were done.



None of the regular stuff on an Airhead is hard or expensive if you can do it yourself, but stuff like a spline lube can be pricy if you have to have it done.
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Old 10-19-2010, 10:22 AM   #8
Sniper X
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Location: Central New Mexico, 7420ft above sea level
Oddometer: 33,308
Also, owners manual and shop manual are big pluses on a /5 sale.
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Old 10-19-2010, 10:42 AM   #9
r2adv
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Location: Near Harleyville, Wisconsin
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/5 checklist

1. Does everything work? electrics - especially those in the headlight housing can be a pain - the switchboard that the nail goes into - lights, etc. Speedo - tach - they can be repaired but new ones are $500.
2. Mileage versus wear - does the wear on pegs and handles match the mileage.
3, Gen light - should glow red at low RPM and go out as you raise the revs.
4. Oil in tray under trans - leaky rear main or oil pump cover - not terrible but some work to fix.
5. Push rod seals - cracked or leaking ? - repair means at least loosening the cylinders.
6. Tank - the inside - any rust showing or floating bits when you slosh it under a bright light.
7. Steering head bearings - with load off the front wheel is the motion of the bars smooth
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Old 10-19-2010, 10:53 AM   #10
rufusswan
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Put it on the centerstand. Then you can check out the steering damper, and hubs/bearings/steering head etc. Expect what will feel like slop in the rear drive train.
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Old 10-19-2010, 10:59 AM   #11
Sniper X
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Location: Central New Mexico, 7420ft above sea level
Oddometer: 33,308
How much does the guy want for it, that way we can better have an idea of either one of two things. One would be if it is overpriced, or if it is so low, the guy is giving it away or it has problems he KNOWS about.
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Old 10-20-2010, 03:23 PM   #12
Sutherngintelmen OP
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Joined: Mar 2009
Location: ATL
Oddometer: 1,196
Draft 1

This is great stuff - thanks for your insights.

I thought I'd try and build something that can be reused by others. I like check lists - so that's what it'll be.

This is a work in progress - I'll be continuing build out and would love additional contributions.

I'm breaking the list into steps - Initial phone call, meat space viewing, test riding, surrogate party review, negotiate and additional resources.

Yes - this may seem a bit much to some of y'alls but money doesn't grow on trees (well maybe at the Fed but not in my yard.) So I want to give myself the best chance of knowing what I'm getting.


Here is draft 1 - it is sans any polish.

The Call:

VIN Search http://www.realoem.com/bmw/

Get as much background on the seller as possible

Documentation
Serivce history / maintenance records
Owners Manual
Service Manual
Title (in hand or lien, salvage/rebuild? in name of seller, state, registered and plated?)

General Bike History
Confirm Location
Owners (when, where, anything notable, Contact information)
Any big crashes
Extended storage periods (recently out of a barn?)
Garaged?
Major mods or rebuilds
Last time it was started / ridden how far?

Motor
Weeping fluids
Oil in tray under trans - leaky rear main or oil pump cover - not terrible but some work to fix
Sound
Start from cold
Blow smoke
Last oil change, how often, factory lubes used?
Last valve adjustment
Ask when the points and timing were done last. Only expect about 15~20k from a fresh set of new factory points.
Push rod seals - cracked or leaking ? - repair means at least loosening the cylinders.



Fuel Delivery
Tank (Ask if the bike has been sitting for a long period of time, it'll need the tank flushed and probably Kreemed, and need the
carby's gone thru if it has.)
Has the tank ever been reworked?
Is fuel in it now? - is it fresh or syrup?
Carbs - original to bike? Last rebuild date?

Drive
Clutch
Last tranny service - any known issues?
Final drive
Last spline lube

Braking
Cylinder or fluid leaking
Last serviceing for brakes
Condition disk or drum
Remaining shoes or pads

Frame, Suspension and Steering
Straight - frame / forks
Any rust
Suspension oem or after market
Visable fluid weeps?
Visual inspection of fork fluid?


Electrical
Charging (Ask if the bike has anything non stock on it like charging system up grades this is good if so, not bad if not but ask
when the alternator brushes were done last or if the bike has any recent maint to the alternator)
Does everything work? electrics - especially those in the headlight housing can be a pain
the switchboard that the nail goes into
Battery hold charge? age?
Wiring Harness
Headlamp
Tail lamp
Any updgrade to the ignition system?
Speedo and Tach (can be repaired but new ones are $500.)
Gen light - should glow red at low RPM and go out as you raise the revs.

Wheels and tire
Straight
Spokes all there
Rust
Age of tires
Tread remaining
Any cracking

Finish
Original
Dents
Scratches
Any scrapes on the valve covers or bar ends?
Rust
Missing badges

After Market / Upgrades / Extras


The In Person
Get a feel for the seller
Ask to see title (set expectation when scheduling call)
Work the list above
Bring some tools
Start the bike cold
Listen to the valves (/5 motors have a distinct sound form the valve covers which sounds like loose valves to a Airhead newby, it is
normal for the motor to be PINGY ot TINKY from the valve covers, for some reason, usually the left one is a tad louder than the
right....)
Mileage versus wear - does the wear on pegs and handles match the mileage.
Tank - the inside - any rust showing or floating bits when you slosh it under a bright light.
Steering head bearings - with load off the front wheel is the motion of the bars smooth
Put it on the centerstand. Then you can check out the steering damper, and hubs/bearings/steering head etc. Expect what will feel
like slop in the rear drive train.


The Test Ride


When you ride it, the little red lamp on the dash should glow under idle, and go out when the bike is being ridden, make sure you
turn the key to poiint to the left (the front of the weird /5 key) so the headlight is on for this red charge lamp test. As you
ride, the charge lamp should go out...if not there is a problem with the diode board, or the alternator or regulator.

Make sure all the lights on the gauge cluster work. Make sure the tach and speedo work. Ask about when the brakes were done.


Surrogate Review

Use a local shop to take a look at the bike for you. Most will do this for not much and well worth the spend if you are going to by
unseen or travel a long distance for pick up.

Negotiate
What's the bike worth?
Cost to transport
Budget to 'get it right'


Additional Resources


BMW motorcycle buyers guide out there by motorbooks international
http://www.5united.net/
Ivan http://motorradavl.com/page--Team-Motorrad--splash.html
nathan@boxerworks.com (Nathan Mende in Watkinsville GA)
__________________
There is a pleasure in the pathed woods, There is a rapture in the smoking pipe, There is chaos, where none intrudes, in the deep dell, with its thrills roar; I love not nature less, but bikes the more. Byron riding.

All pics < 6/30/12 deleted by Apple Now with SmugMug supporting ADV

Sutherngintelmen screwed with this post 05-13-2012 at 02:11 PM
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Old 10-20-2010, 03:29 PM   #13
blaine.hale
Beastly Adventurer
 
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Joined: Feb 2009
Location: Atlanta, Ga
Oddometer: 3,040
My brother is selling one here in the ATL:
http://atlanta.craigslist.org/atl/mcy/2015061196.html

Charging system has some issues that we're trying to sort out but the price is right and it's all original. Come check it out
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Old 10-20-2010, 03:33 PM   #14
Sniper X
De Oppresso Liber
 
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Joined: Jul 2006
Location: Central New Mexico, 7420ft above sea level
Oddometer: 33,308
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sutherngintelmen
This is great stuff - thanks for your insights.

I thought I'd try and build something that can be reused by others. I like check lists - so that's what it'll be.

This is a work in progress - I'll be continuing build out and would love additional contributions.

I'm breaking the list into steps - Initial phone call, meat space viewing, test riding, surrogate party review, negotiate and additional resources.

Yes - this may seem a bit much to some of but money doesn't grow on trees (well maybe at the Fed but not in my yard.) So I want to give myself the best chance of knowing what I'm getting.


Here is draft 1 - it is sans any polish.

The Call:

Get as much background on the seller as possible

Documentation
Serivce history / maintenance records
Owners Manual
Service Manual
Title (in hand or lien, salvage/rebuild? in name of seller, state, registered and plated?)

General Bike History
Confirm Location
Owners (when, where, anything notable, Contact information)
Any big crashes
Extended storage periods (recently out of a barn?)
Garaged?
Major mods or rebuilds
Last time it was started / ridden how far?

Motor
Weeping fluids
Oil in tray under trans - leaky rear main or oil pump cover - not terrible but some work to fix
Sound
Start from cold
Blow smoke
Last oil change, how often, factory lubes used?
Last valve adjustment
Ask when the points and timing were done last. Only expect about 15~20k from a fresh set of new factory points.
Push rod seals - cracked or leaking ? - repair means at least loosening the cylinders.



Fuel Delivery
Tank (Ask if the bike has been sitting for a long period of time, it'll need the tank flushed and probably Kreemed, and need the
carby's gone thru if it has.)
Has the tank ever been reworked?
Is fuel in it now? - is it fresh or syrup?
Carbs - original to bike? Last rebuild date?

Drive
Clutch
Last tranny service - any known issues?
Final drive
Last spline lube

Braking
Cylinder or fluid leaking
Last serviceing for brakes
Condition disk or drum
Remaining shoes or pads

Frame, Suspension and Steering
Straight - frame / forks
Any rust
Suspension oem or after market
Visable fluid weeps?
Visual inspection of fork fluid?


Electrical
Charging (Ask if the bike has anything non stock on it like charging system up grades this is good if so, not bad if not but ask
when the alternator brushes were done last or if the bike has any recent maint to the alternator)
Does everything work? electrics - especially those in the headlight housing can be a pain
the switchboard that the nail goes into
Battery hold charge? age?
Wiring Harness
Headlamp
Tail lamp
Any updgrade to the ignition system?
Speedo and Tach (can be repaired but new ones are $500.)
Gen light - should glow red at low RPM and go out as you raise the revs.

Wheels and tire
Straight
Spokes all there
Rust
Age of tires
Tread remaining
Any cracking

Finish
Original
Dents
Scratches
Any scrapes on the valve covers or bar ends?
Rust
Missing badges

After Market / Upgrades / Extras


The In Person
Get a feel for the seller
Ask to see title (set expectation when scheduling call)
Work the list above
Bring some tools
Start the bike cold
Listen to the valves (/5 motors have a distinct sound form the valve covers which sounds like loose valves to a Airhead newby, it is
normal for the motor to be PINGY ot TINKY from the valve covers, for some reason, usually the left one is a tad louder than the
right....)
Mileage versus wear - does the wear on pegs and handles match the mileage.
Tank - the inside - any rust showing or floating bits when you slosh it under a bright light.
Steering head bearings - with load off the front wheel is the motion of the bars smooth
Put it on the centerstand. Then you can check out the steering damper, and hubs/bearings/steering head etc. Expect what will feel
like slop in the rear drive train.


The Test Ride


When you ride it, the little red lamp on the dash should glow under idle, and go out when the bike is being ridden, make sure you
turn the key to poiint to the left (the front of the weird /5 key) so the headlight is on for this red charge lamp test. As you
ride, the charge lamp should go out...if not there is a problem with the diode board, or the alternator or regulator.

Make sure all the lights on the gauge cluster work. Make sure the tach and speedo work. Ask about when the brakes were done.


Surrogate Review

Use a local shop to take a look at the bike for you. Most will do this for not much and well worth the spend if you are going to by
unseen or travel a long distance for pick up.

Negotiate
What's the bike worth?
Cost to transport
Budget to 'get it right'


Additional Resources


BMW motorcycle buyers guide out there by motorbooks international
http://www.5united.net/
Ivan http://motorradavl.com/page--Team-Motorrad--splash.html
nathan@boxerworks.com (Nathan Mende in Watkinsville GA)
Very comprehensive that.....
__________________
" The people who cast the votes decide nothing. The people who count the votes decide everything."
Straight Out Da Trailah!
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Old 10-20-2010, 03:34 PM   #15
Sutherngintelmen OP
around the bend
 
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Joined: Mar 2009
Location: ATL
Oddometer: 1,196
I'm not locked into anything except R75/5. I expect it will be a '73 toaster but not in a rush to get this done. I've got other ponies in the stable to keep me grinning for now.

This is more of a long term play - be plenty happy to get a bike next week, next Spring or anytime between. Actually, I think I'm full of Sooner is better

I won't do anything rash - no need for comments there - I really can be patient.

That said - and at the risk of creating competion for myself - I do like this green....

http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/eB...#ht_500wt_1182


Quote:
Originally Posted by Sniper X
How much does the guy want for it, that way we can better have an idea of either one of two things. One would be if it is overpriced, or if it is so low, the guy is giving it away or it has problems he KNOWS about.
__________________
There is a pleasure in the pathed woods, There is a rapture in the smoking pipe, There is chaos, where none intrudes, in the deep dell, with its thrills roar; I love not nature less, but bikes the more. Byron riding.

All pics < 6/30/12 deleted by Apple Now with SmugMug supporting ADV
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