My 1st Airhead R75/6

Discussion in 'Airheads' started by lake_harley, Jun 9, 2012.

  1. lake_harley

    lake_harley Been here awhile

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    683
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    Uniontown, MO
    Went into Grassroots BMW in Cape Girardeau, MO today to buy a new pair of mesh, summer gloves and to "just look at" a project bike R75/6 they had listed in the used bike section on their website. Well, I did find pair of Tourmaster gloves I think I'll like, and also found myself making a second trip back, but with a trailer to bring home my 1st airhead.

    I'll probably have a hard time resisting the urge to get on with finding out what needs to be done to resurrect it since I already have about three other projects waiting for me. This may be tough!

    Story was it belonged to an older gentleman who passed away. It appears it has been sitting for some time but it appears quite complete, with a few items missing from the bike in a box.....well, actually in the single Krauser side case that came with the bike. I'll go slow on the project and hopefully will become fluent speaking airhead along the way.

    Since it didn't happen if there's no picture, here ya go..............

    BTW.....yes, I'm really that handsome in real life too!

    [​IMG]
    #1
  2. sealsam

    sealsam Sam...I am.

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    You're right, you have too many other projects...

    Put it back in the trailer and bring it to me, i'll take care of it.

    You are gunna love riding that airhead. Since I got mine last Oct I did some minor clean up, paint, shocks & tires. They are a blast! I threw a cheapy National Cycle windscreen on it, which has made it much more comfortable at hwy speeds.

    Congratulations & good luck!! :thumb
    #2
  3. boxerboy81

    boxerboy81 Stay Horizontal

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    Looks good.
    I have a NA spec BMW headlight lens you can have for postage cost...it comes from Oz though. If you're interested, I'll pack it up and get a costing.
    #3
  4. lake_harley

    lake_harley Been here awhile

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    Thankfully, the headlight is among the parts that are with the bike.....front turn signals, I'm not sure. It has brackets on the frame for a fairing that was on the bike, but so far I don't know if that's included. Maybe the turnsignals get moved to mount on the fairing? There is a long wiring pigtail coming out of the headlight bucket that has 6 or 8 (?) pins that would have extended the wiring harness to the fairing. It appears to be somewhat "hard wired" into the bike's harness, so that should prove a challenge in itself, getting it back to it's original non-faired status. I have a pretty good relationship with the staff at Grassroots BMW (I think) and they indicated they would make service manual copies and give advice if/when I run into glitches.

    I've already discovered that /6 bikes, and maybe other airheads, have one heck of a wonky kickstand! I have never before been intimidated and threatened by a kickstand. Is perfecting the process of deploying that evil spring-loaded device, and leaning the bike onto it, a rite of passage into the airhead inner circle?

    Lynn
    #4
  5. Wirespokes

    Wirespokes Beemerholics Anonymous

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    Welcome to airhead-dom and the wacky world of Old Schoolers!

    You don't look any less handsome than the rest of us, so you'll fit right in. :evil

    Yeah, airheads come from a different universe. But you'll be assimilated and soon none of it will seem odd at all. :lol3

    Who knows if we're all wacko because of these bikes, or wound up with them because we were already in that state - chicken or the egg? sort of thing. But you look like you're one of us - you've got that look...

    So welcome!

    PS - yes, the side stand (and even the center stand, along with the oil filter, and shifting the clunkiest transmissions in the world) will become second nature eventually and almost fun.
    #5
  6. crazydrummerdude

    crazydrummerdude Wacky Bongo Boy

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    Hey, an R75/6 was my first airhead, too! Now I have three /6's and two /2's!

    If you need any help, PM me. I'm up in St Charles.
    #6
  7. Horsehockey

    Horsehockey A GPS? Huh?

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    Welcome aboard. She looks like a fine prospect. Be patient, take it a step at a time, figure out how to meet up with the Crazydrummerdude - who has BTDT with your model - and hope you left a little $$ in the reserve. A project bike takes one to two years to get completely roadworthy and back to spec. imo. These bikes still make sense. A rare gift. Enjoy.
    #7
  8. brocktoon

    brocktoon Been here awhile

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    Nope. The actual rite of passage is immolating the OEM stand and buying a Brown's Sidestand. :lol3
    #8
  9. Bill Harris

    Bill Harris Confirmed Curmudgeon

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    Nice bike, good choice. But who is the geezer in the pic??? :rofl

    +1 on the Brown's sidestand.

    The 6-prong plug is to the fairing, either a Windjammer or the B&S knockoff, Luftmeister. If it's a standard setup, it should be easy to remove from the system. If he did custom wiring, it'll be a bit more work to remove it. At any rate, get a wiring schematic and shop manual.

    Plan to repalce a lot of rubber bits. They seem to go when a bike has been sitting for a while. First off, replace the rubber boot where the speedo cable enters the transmission. If it leaks, you'll get water in the gearbox.

    One good source of parts is BMW Hucky: http://bmwhucky.com/ . And there are others, but I usually buy from Hans.

    Questions? We're here... :ear
    #9
  10. disston

    disston ShadeTreeExpert

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    I like the side stand on my /6. Everybody always talks about how they don't like the side stand, I don't get it. My side stand works fine. I have long legs, is that it?

    OK a Brown might be better. It looks stronger. But I don't have a problem with the stock stand. It retracts automatically the way it is supposed to.

    Turn signals should not be a problem. The parts are pretty cheap used. Oh, I just noticed you have the Aluminum ones in the rear so this is a 1974 machine? Aluminum in the front is stock but the black plastic ones will fit and work fine. If you really want the Aluminum ones they should only cost about $50 used.

    Then I notice the front disc is drilled. So is this a '74 bike or later? Kind looks like '74 switches but not a good enough angle to be sure.
    #10
  11. crazydrummerdude

    crazydrummerdude Wacky Bongo Boy

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    Although it has the aluminum turn signals, the switches aren't the '74 (/5) style, the front rotor is drilled, and I don't see the weld on the swingarm.
    #11
  12. disston

    disston ShadeTreeExpert

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    OK. Now I can see the headlight on/off switch so the bike is either a '75 or '76. You still have the option of using the cooler Aluminum turn signals or the black plastic ones.
    #12
  13. lake_harley

    lake_harley Been here awhile

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    The bike is supposed to be a '75, but I haven't done the paperwork yet to see what the title says for sure. The listing on Grassroots BMW's website said '75, but the salesman kept saying '74. Obviously, I know so little about airheads I'm dangerous. I hope I don't run wide on the leaning curve:lol3

    Regarding the stands, it actually has three now. The stock side stand, some monstosity sidestand that's welded to the left peg's bracket, and an unknown (to me) centerstand that I'll have to get a picture of to post, and hopefully have identified.

    Thanks for all the encouragement, the warm welcome to airhead ownership, and offers of advice and direction.

    Lynn
    #13
  14. disston

    disston ShadeTreeExpert

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    There is a seven digit # stamped on a flat above the dipstick. This is the engine serial # and should be the same as the frame # which is on the right front just below the head stock. If these #'s are not the same you have a replacement engine. The frame # will be used for title and registration purposes. the title you have should have this #.

    Go to realoem.com and put the seven digit # in. They will tell you when the bike was made. This is sometimes enough to know what year model it is but there are also sometimes some confusion.

    http://realoem.com/bmw/
    #14
  15. lake_harley

    lake_harley Been here awhile

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    disston...thanks for the link and the info. The engine and frame numbers do match one another (Yeah!) and the production date came up as 8/74 for the bike when I entered the number. Would that have been considered a 1974 or 1975 model by the time it came to the US? Based on earlier comments about various items looking one year or another, maybe since it was relatively late in the year some items were "in transition"? Were the airheads like some other bikes (ie. Japanese) in that period that were titled by the year when they were sold?.I guess it really doesn't matter what year the title says, as long as I know what parts to order when I need some.

    Lynn
    #15
  16. disston

    disston ShadeTreeExpert

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    There sometimes is confusion and we can't tell what parts may have been put on later by POs or were being used at the factory. There are sometimes questions exactly which carbs are correct for your particular era.

    I'd say in this instance go by the switches on the handlebar. You could post a better pic of the switches? But we see the yellow so think these are the 1975 switches and are very likely not something a PO would have changed. Also in favor of '75 is the drilled disc.

    The Aluminum turn signals could have been put on there by the factory or a PO. This is a simple swap and they look better than the black plastic so is a popular trade. But certainly could also be factory. According to the books the Aluminum signal is only 1974.

    There is a 6 digit number on a plate on the side of the carbs. It will be 64/32/??. Tell me the last two digits and I'll tell you more about it. Many of these R75/6es got /5 carbs because the factory was using them up.

    It doesn't matter much at all what year the DMV calls it, I think.

    You'll be learning more about this as you go along. Does your bike have a kick starter or electric only?
    #16
  17. melville

    melville Long timer

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    I'm available to help you with your bike's BLING deficiency:

    [​IMG]

    Looks like a fun project!
    #17
  18. Bill Harris

    Bill Harris Confirmed Curmudgeon

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    Might be a Surefoot, then. Snowbum has a dissertation/treatise on Sidestands. Wade in. (Folks, he's discovered photos for his website. And egads yes, they're like you imagine. :eek1 )

    http://bmwmotorcycletech.info/FarleyBrownSurefoot.htm

    Couple of sidestand comments: the '75 may have a sidestand that is self-retracting. "Self retracting" is self-explanatory. Be careful. It can embarrass you. But it can be made "un-self-retracting" easily.

    Park the bike on the sidestand, oil will tend to sometimes pool in the left cylinder and give a puff of smoke the next time you start. Doesn't hurt anything and causes only minor embarrassment. Or no embarrassment if you pretend it's like a WWII radial aircraft engine lighting up.

    They are fun bikes. A bit quirky at times, but fun. :deal
    #18
  19. lake_harley

    lake_harley Been here awhile

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    Location:
    Uniontown, MO
    The left carb has 64/32/9 and the right carb has 64/32/10 stamped into the BING identification tag. I'll look forward to hearing what they are. Learning more about this bike is really giving me the itch to get working on it.

    I got back to Grassroots BMW today to do the paperwok on the purchase and was able to find out a bit more about the bike and pick up the spare/extra parts that were included with the bike. I forgot to get them when I picked up the bike. Dave....the "walking BMW encyclopedia" at Grassroots, thought the bike might have been ridden as recently as a couple years ago. I think he remembers everybody. He talked like the previous owner, now deceased, used to do his own maintenance, but recommended pulling to trans to do a spline check/lube as well as some other maintenance and checks before I get too carried away. I want to check the bike over thoroughly before I even think about trying to start and/or ride it.

    There are brackets on the bike already for a Windjammer fairing that had been mounted. No, I'm not putting it back on the bike, as much as I appreciate wind protection but in a pocket of the fairing I found the key that fits the bike's ignition and seat lock. :D Forgot to try it in the fork lock though. Didn't mess too much with the other keys on the ring, but I'm hoping one fits the gas cap lock and maybe the one side case I have. I put the one bag on the bike and was pleasantly suprised and pleased how the white case looks on the bike. Maybe I'll look for a right side one too!

    Also found a pair of aluminum turn signals, but they appear to have had part of the stalk cut off....maybe not, but I don't see how they would work on the front as-is. I'll have to get a picture and see if someone can educate me. Also need to get a picture of the center stand. I don't think it's stock, but it appears (to me...the noob) that it's on the stock frame mount points.

    Under the seat was another suprise...a well-stocked tool kit, that included what appears to be a spanner for the fork caps.....has a couple pins anyway, and I had already thought I'd end up having to make one. Looks to be a well stocked "traveling" tool roll.

    In the side case were a variety of things that included a pair of "better insulated than I now own" gloves that fit me, a new BMW roundel to replace the grungy one on the left side of the tank, a right-side side cover that appears to have been messed with (no apparent way it attaches at the front to hold it on, but sadly, no left side cover), and a few less exciting things. I'm getting to love this airhead more all the time though! It's like Christmas in June, discovering and finding all this stuff.

    Thanks to everyone who has offered help already. I really appreciate it!

    Lynn
    #19
  20. Indiesol

    Indiesol Putz

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    Welcome! Cool bike. I wish I could offer more than encouragement, but being new to airheads myself, I can only say you're not alone!
    #20