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Old 02-24-2011, 06:34 AM   #16
kaput13
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The problem ofcourse is that you lose something when you compare the two on a strictly objective basis. Magazine comparison tests of the time would generally pick the BMW when it came to function but it was close. I've owned both an RS and SP and in terms of overall competence and function the RS was better and easier to live with. You might have noted though, that of the respondents who have owned both, they appear to have more affection for the Guzzi. Memory is a fickle thing. The problem for me was that the more I rode the SP the more I lusted for a Lemans. Looking back over time the Lemans was the most captivating, involving motorcycle I have ever owned - not at all bad to tour on either once you replaced that plank of a seat. Like Bikerfish said "its all what you like." Too right.
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Old 02-24-2011, 11:33 PM   #17
manxkipper
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Talking

I found the handling on the Guzzi better than the BMW, seemed much stiffer. The BM electrics are better. Guzzi electrics can be problematic. Having said that I have just bought an 1980 LM2 with 18k km. if its character you want buy a Guzzi.

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Old 02-25-2011, 02:25 AM   #18
Rob Farmer
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Originally Posted by Reryder View Post
But an RS fitted with R90S fairing and handlebars and bench seat might be a way to go too. That is what I am planning to do with mine.
That'll be a CS then. I've got the original sorts seat on my RS and a bench seat for camping or taking the Mrs on the back, unfortunatly She doesn't like the RS at all.
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Old 02-25-2011, 01:48 PM   #19
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The first (77-80) SP1000 have the same pegs as the Le Mans I and II, iron liners and a thinner seat. After 81 or so, the SP got the same pegs as the T3 and the mongo couch seat off the Convert and G5. The later bike (SP1000NT) has nikasil cylinders, lower mufflers, better frame paint, slightly different fairing bits, etc.

My first Guzzi was a 1983 SP, and I rode it everywhere. It was a fine traveler, comfy and handled well. With the 30mm carbs it is a little limited on top-end, but got great mileage and with the stock tank could easily go 200+ miles on a tank.

The frame geometry is exactly the same as the V7 Sport and LeMans I. Except the switchgear and distributor, the electrics are Bosch. The distributor gives no trouble, but some people have trouble with the switches (I never did).
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Old 02-25-2011, 08:59 PM   #20
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... /7 seat probably better, but might depend on the arse to seat relationship of individuals.
Don't tell 'er indoors that.
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Old 06-16-2013, 10:55 PM   #21
Andosan
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1977 R100s vs 1980 SP1000

Thought I would revive this old thread as I am in the midst of this internal debate at the moment. A little background. I had my first airhead over this past two years, an 84 R80RT. I did a lot of repairs on it but realized it wasn't my dream bike in the end thought I'd get what I could for it instead of putting money into it. So now I'm bikeless, a strange feeling. Through a connection at a local shop I might have a chance to buy an '80 SP1000. I don't know all the info yet but it's low miles and appears in pretty pristine condition. On the OTHERHAND there's this '77 R100s for sale that is also tempting me. It has had the same owner since 1980 and he's done a lot of work on it. Has 42k miles but has had top-end rebuilt in '08, new clutch this year, transmission rebuild this year, shaft drive rebuilt, wheel bearings etc etc. A long list of stuff anyways and has the receipts. I liked my airhead but found it a bit tame. It was certainly capable but not very exciting. I want more power and sport handling in a vintage bike but still be able to take long trips with my gal. I've never ridden a Guzzi so I don't have much to compare it to. I've ridden an R90s and enjoyed it a lot. I'm sure either bike would be an exciting change but I'm not sure which way to go. The guys from this shop have me favoring the Guzzi as they think they're better bikes all around. It's certainly tempting to go Italian! Thoughts?
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Old 06-17-2013, 04:20 AM   #22
Rathlindri
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Go for the guzzi, BUT, be prepared to allow it time to grow on you.
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Old 06-17-2013, 04:42 AM   #23
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I'll expound on this later, but my short answer is the Guzzi. I've got one of each . I've had the BMW for 20 years, and love it more every year. I just this spring finished a rebuild of an 850 T3, and I feel like this is my moto nirvana. It is the bike I always felt the BMW should be. Thankfully, there is room in my life for both!
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Old 06-17-2013, 06:53 PM   #24
Nolan Woodbury
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Have had both. Still have the SP...

> Both 1000cc ish

BMW: 980cc Moto Guzzi: 949cc.

> Both full fairing offering by all accounts excellent protection

One of the two biggest areas the SP has the advantage. BMW fairing is frame mounted, very thick, good fiberglass and (generally) well finished. The SP's kit is closer to the rider and in practice works much better. Stock RS screen with destroy your hearing. The SP is lighter/lower/narrower. The SP not effected by side winds and has far superior road holding/stability.

> Both aircooled

> Both shaftdrive

> Similar fuel consumption, Guzzi slightly better

> Guzzi more powerful

Not stock for stock. The SP's 949 'small valve' is greatly enhanced by larger (mine has 36mm) carbs and exhaust (vintage BUB). Have some other goodies like lightened flywheel, etc. The RS had $3500 worth of CC Products engine work done and the more-stock SP just crushes it. Any gear, any speed. Plus! Guzzi much easier to work on...if needed.

> Guzzi "funny" brakes

Cast iron Brembo brakes are linked and very good. Far, far better than the cheapo stainless crap BMW mounted to the RS.

BMW info and parts source seems better

Depends on who you know. I've have no problem getting parts for anything newer than 1975.

The RS is more sophisticated. Better finish. The SP is tougher, much more straightforward and more fun to ride. I've had both. The SP is better.



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Old 06-17-2013, 07:35 PM   #25
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For long distance/high speed, I find the Guzzi to be way ahead of the BMW. On the BMW, I always have wished that the bike had one more gear, on the Guzzi I can cruise along happily in 4th at 70-75, and then I realize, "oh yeah, I've got another gear". While the Guzzi's gearing is taller, it's not just that, the BMW just sounds a lot busier at a given RPM than the Guzzi does.

So now I feel obliged to say some things in defense of the BMW. It is lighter, and you do feel the difference, my BMW feels nimbler, particularly at low speeds. Under 4000 rpm, it is definitely smoother. I find that the BMW is easier to work on, on the normal maintenance items than the Guzzi. There's nothing tricky about the Guzzi, it just hard to reach a lot of things in comparison. That said, I rebuilt the engine and trans on the Guzzi this past winter, and in that regard, I found it easier than the BMW.

The Guzzi sounds so good, you won't believe it. If you have only heard Guzzis on youtube videos, you're not getting it. I've been riding the Guzzi 3 to 1 over the BMW this year so far. When I am riding it, I'm constantly thinking how much better it is than the BMW, but then yesterday I spent a few hours on the BMW, and I fell in love with it again.
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Old 06-18-2013, 09:42 AM   #26
Qaz
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I don't own either but have ridden both quite a few time over longer miles. Here is my take: as far as looks there is no comparison, the RS all the way. If you don't believe it look back a couple of posts.
Build quality also goes to the BMW, but there is something to be said for the tractor tuffness of the Moto Guzzi.
Speed- I have watched too many Guzzi's run away from BMW's not to get that right, Moto Guzzi.
From the factory the BMW rides better, but replace the seat on the Guzzi, and now you have a fight.
Touring- If I had to travel 200 miles and had a choice, it would be on the Guzzi. The Guzzi engine has something the BMW never has, and that is soul! There is just something about that 90 degree V2 that is just music to the heart, while gulping miles up. The flat twin will get the job done, but that is all it does.

Personally I have never considered the R100RS and the SP1000 in the same category, but I guess they are. I think the SP more closely matches the R90s or R100s class. I think the LeMans series is more too sporty for any Beemer.
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Old 06-18-2013, 04:23 PM   #27
Andosan
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Originally Posted by JonnyCash View Post
For long distance/high speed, I find the Guzzi to be way ahead of the BMW. On the BMW, I always have wished that the bike had one more gear, on the Guzzi I can cruise along happily in 4th at 70-75, and then I realize, "oh yeah, I've got another gear". While the Guzzi's gearing is taller, it's not just that, the BMW just sounds a lot busier at a given RPM than the Guzzi does.

So now I feel obliged to say some things in defense of the BMW. It is lighter, and you do feel the difference, my BMW feels nimbler, particularly at low speeds. Under 4000 rpm, it is definitely smoother. I find that the BMW is easier to work on, on the normal maintenance items than the Guzzi. There's nothing tricky about the Guzzi, it just hard to reach a lot of things in comparison. That said, I rebuilt the engine and trans on the Guzzi this past winter, and in that regard, I found it easier than the BMW.

The Guzzi sounds so good, you won't believe it. If you have only heard Guzzis on youtube videos, you're not getting it. I've been riding the Guzzi 3 to 1 over the BMW this year so far. When I am riding it, I'm constantly thinking how much better it is than the BMW, but then yesterday I spent a few hours on the BMW, and I fell in love with it again.
Good points all around. I'm def leaning toward to Guzzi but I still haven't yet got a firm answer back on the price and everything. Hoping it goes through! I at least want to try the Italian side of bikes. To be clear though I was comparing it to a 1977 R100s, not an RS. I'm gonna see the BMW this weekend just because I want to while I wait for the word on the Guzzi. Fingers crossed!
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Old 06-21-2013, 10:21 AM   #28
Roach Carver
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I have a 71 Guzzi Ambo and 4 bmw's ranging from 71-80. I cant comment too much other than to say the guzzi just has something my BMW's don't. I dont intend to part with any of them but if I had to then the Guzzi would go last. I have never had a bike that would run with so many things wrong with it.
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Old 06-21-2013, 09:58 PM   #29
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I've had 4 RS's. The bias is doubtless.

I haven't had a SP, but did have a LM mk2.

The MG seemed more raw, I loved the brakes, the electrics were rubbish. It could tour. I went trans Oz on the MG in comfort. Better comfort at speed I found. It's relative rarity always attracted comment. Unsure the SP would do that, but I'd be concerned re: the rarity aspect and parts acquisition.

The RS by comparison is a better all rounder. I'm 186cm and built for comfort, and the RS suits me just fine for 600km-900km days. The screen MUST be trimmed however. It's also my daily rider, I commute in city traffic and have no issue with it. Parts are available and generally not too expensive, however I doubt that will stay the same for much longer as both these bikes get older and less common.
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Old 06-22-2013, 08:59 AM   #30
huub
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I have never had a bike that would run with so many things wrong with it.
you made my day

i am seriously biased , owning half a dozen of guzzi's.
but if you want a perfectly adequate mode of transportation , get the BMW.
if you want character , get the guzzi.
one word of caution , guzzi's are addictive....
with a 1000 SP, fit a pair of 36 mm pumper carbs , and a set of lafranconi's , and you start wondering why everybody else keeps riding boring bikes.

huub screwed with this post 06-22-2013 at 09:05 AM
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