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Old 07-19-2013, 12:23 PM   #1
More_Miles OP
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BMW flying brick - Magic price point?

Hey all! I've got a question for the hive mind.

I've been mulling this over for a while. I've been thinking of acquiring a flying brick. More specifically, a mid 80's and up K75 or K100, S or RS as it may be. To further complicate things, I'd like to look further afield, do the deal, fly out and ride it home. Great vacation I would think. So, it's fairly important I get a solid runner.

I currently have an R100RT, and I've become quite familiar the hard way with the airhead "magic price." That is, in mathematical terms:
(Purchase Price) + (Required Parts and Work to Make Reliable) >= $5000
I picked up mine for about $2500 and I must have close to that again with gaskets, parts, seals, rubber bits, head work, etc. That's a story for another day though.

So, while I've "Googled" around for threads in Olds Cool (1990 was 23 years ago! God where does the time go?) I haven't seen anything mentioning a magic price point. Perhaps the bricks don't HAVE a "magic price" and you pays your money and takes your chances. I've seen everything from a $1500 "good runner" to $5-6000.

So, what's the word?
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Old 07-19-2013, 01:00 PM   #2
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K75 is a great underpriced classic. Driveshaft splines are the wear point and if you can get assurance that they are in good shape then 2500 to 3000 is a fair price.
I found one on Kijiji Ottawa last year and asked another inmate couple to check it out. They did this, the purchase/pick up and stored it until my fly and ride. Rode for 4 days with me in their area and I rode it home through Quebec, NB, PEI and NS (including the Cabot Trail) before a 900 KM day off the ferry to home.
Thanks again EmmBeeDee and Dresda.
I rationalized it to myself this way. If I went on a vacation I would rent a bike for the week. For the same cost I got to keep the rental.
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Old 07-19-2013, 02:15 PM   #3
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I've been reading up on these for a bit now. To me, the magic conversion of factors seems to be: about 30-50k miles (not ridden tons but not left to sit very long), recent spline lube, luggage included and upgraded shock for 3,500 or less. They are certainly out there. From what I have seen/read, if you cover those bases, the next biggest things to ask about are whether the fan works and there are some rubber parts in the fuel system that will deteriorate if left sitting too long. If it starts up and runs well, I wouldn't suspect this to be an issue. I haven't heard of anyone getting big surprises with these bikes if the basics check out...

They also seem to be more affordable in the West (Colorado, New Mexico, Utah, even California) than in the East.
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Old 07-19-2013, 05:37 PM   #4
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If you do get one, Duck's site is a great resource - motobrick.com - loads of how-to info

I have a 91 k100rs and I like it a lot. I'm in the SF bay area and on CL it seems like the price tiers are:

$1500 - $2500: high miles or lots of sitting

$2500 - $3500: used frequently enough to have decent tires, brakes, seat. Like Chico said if the shock is refreshed and its nice and clean it will be closer to $3500. Once in a while there will be a garage queen for north of $4k.

They never get snapped up but they do seem to sell well enough. The ABS systems are usually on the fritz, mine is. I also just grew a crack in the one-piece exhaust, so maybe check that in addition to fan, and the obvious stuff. There is a drain hole under the clutch housing, if there is oil there it needs a clutch nut o-ring or a rear main seal, which is some work to get to.

Mens Rea screwed with this post 07-19-2013 at 05:53 PM
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Old 07-19-2013, 06:04 PM   #5
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Had to laugh

Two weeks ago I bought my first BMW, a 1992 BMW R100R, 60,000 kilometers (37,200 miles). It's in great condition, clean no dings, new tires. I paid $4,600, this is in Toronto Canada. I haven't had to put in the other 400 yet, time will tell.
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Old 07-20-2013, 02:28 PM   #6
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#1 - Check the weep hole in the bellhousing (a.k.a. intermediate housing) between the motor and the transmission for leaking motor oil. Given how old these bikes are getting, it's not uncommon for the clutch nut O-ring to harden and start leaking. If you know what you're doing then it takes about 5-6 hours to replace this $2 part. If not, plan for a weekend.

A dealer will charge anywhere from $600 (if charging actual hours) but most charge at standard labor hour rates and will run you $1,000+ (plus tax depending upon state)

I would not advise you not to buy one unless you plan on doing all of the maintenance yourself. Most dealer wrenches have little to no experience with them and are "manual readers" when working on old Ks. Not to knock the dealer wrenches though as their training, and most of their experience, is on newer bikes.

There are some good indy wrenches scattered about the country though that have some decent skills wrenching on older Ks.
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Old 07-20-2013, 02:36 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mens Rea View Post
I also just grew a crack in the one-piece exhaust,
I run aftermarket exhausts on my 4V Ks but supposedly the way to keep those collector weld cracks from occurring is to keep the header flange bolts tight. (Check them at every oil change.)

And getting it rewelded is usually only a temporary fix and the crack will return.
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Old 07-21-2013, 05:14 AM   #8
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Thanks all. There doesn't seem to be any surprises with the must watch for items. After all, the drive-line is more similar than different to the R bikes I'm used to. Other than the sprague clutch and the bits associated with liquid cooling and fuel injection (pumps, rubber bits, etc.)

So it seems like $2500 - $3500 is a good solid runner, and north of $4000 might be pretty, but have sat for too long.

Now to start hunting. Also, to find a hunting area that has inexpensive air fare!
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Old 07-21-2013, 06:44 AM   #9
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I keep seeing this on Chicago CL. Buy it so I don't have to!

http://chicago.craigslist.org/nwc/mcy/3949577502.html
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Old 07-21-2013, 06:53 AM   #10
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I keep seeing this on Chicago CL. Buy it so I don't have to!

http://chicago.craigslist.org/nwc/mcy/3949577502.html
That isn't too bad looking. Milage should be posted.

I'd say $2500 is the target price for what you are looking for.

$1000 either way depending on?????
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Old 07-21-2013, 07:15 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptainCrunch View Post
I keep seeing this on Chicago CL. Buy it so I don't have to!

http://chicago.craigslist.org/nwc/mcy/3949577502.html
88 = smokey start up if left on side stand for any time

(88 and earlier K bikes have rings that let oil seep past them if the bike is left on the side stand for a while. These were changed for the 89 and later model years so as not to let so much oil seep past the rings. Smokey start ups can be minimized if you tilt the bike to the right for ten seconds or so after turning it off so that the oil behind the pistons can drain back into the sump.)
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Old 07-21-2013, 07:56 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by duck View Post
88 = smokey start up if left on side stand for any time
.
.
.
Smokey start ups can be minimized if you tilt the bike to the right for ten seconds or so after turning it off so that the oil behind the pistons can drain back into the sump.)
Sounds more and more like an airhead! I should be right at home!
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Old 07-21-2013, 09:40 AM   #13
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The 10 second lean is useless on a k bike. Tried it and no workie. When a friend and I are on the k75's we use the side-stands and bet a beer on whose bike will smoke.
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Old 07-21-2013, 10:09 AM   #14
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I've had my share of k bikes and the above advise is sound. Park on center stand and no smoke. I remember there being smoking contests, whos' smokes the most. If ya need one looked at in the south east Wisconsin area, I'd be happy to check it out for you. They are fairly easy to work on, even the rear engine leaks and there are plenty of parts around. And less plastic on the bike equals easier to work on. Less fairing also makes for a cooler ride. They can get hot. Had one with a Pichler fairing and it was brutal with the lowers on. However, it was nice in colder weather. I really like that k75 in Chicago, it looks like it's ready to go. Probably get it for 2500.
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Old 07-21-2013, 12:37 PM   #15
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The 10 second lean is useless on a k bike. Tried it and no workie. When a friend and I are on the k75's we use the side-stands and bet a beer on whose bike will smoke.
Works fine on my K75. I ALWAYS do it when I'm at the ferry dock. Too embarrassing otherwise.
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