my r80 hates me.

Discussion in 'Airheads' started by villageidiot, Oct 27, 2012.

  1. villageidiot

    villageidiot Long timer

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    i thought i was being nice........ taking my bmw r80 for a lap around california, thru rivers, big trees, some farmlands, and ultimately the coast.

    alas, like everthing mechanical i own, it breaks.

    cutting out and mega backfiring, bike died completely whilst going thru a flat portion of freeway at 65mph.

    it re started instantly. brought back up to speed, did it again, this time worse back fire, and the tach dropped to zero in a hurry.

    fires instantly, i limped off the freeway, on morning 2, of my 4 day planned trip. i rented a giant moving truck and hauled it home.

    wife tells me enough is enough. its my only mode of transportation, and it has to be reliable. im spending way too much $ on parts/maintenance.

    im sure its ignition related, as the bike was full of fuel, only having run 30 miles of my fresh tank. and the tachometer takes its pulse off of something ignition (not sure if its bean can or ignition module)

    not sure im going to fix it or sell as is, but the wife says to go buy a NEW bike. kinda bummed.
    #1
  2. elmontanero

    elmontanero Practicing...

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    Sorry man... I've been on the verge of throwing the g/s out into the street and hoping for a truck to run it over too.

    I've learned that doing the Valves on the bike, no matter how many times or how recently... calms me down and makes me think about what's going on with it. Sometimes it solves the problem, more often it cues me into what's going on because I'm going slow and LOOKING properly. With only three bolts a side and a cup of oil in the loss column its a worthwhile endeavor.

    Short of keeping the bike... I'd be tempted in the direction of the Nc700x.
    #2
  3. villageidiot

    villageidiot Long timer

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    less than 1000 miles ago, i did......

    all cables, carb sync, rubber tubes that hang carbs on, took off the pulse air system, oil service, front braided stainless brake hose, brake flush, grips, foot peg rubbers.

    im a wrench by trade (cars), and i even had help of a 30+ yr bmw wrench (at his shop, with his help and guidance)

    previous to this last 1000 miles...... but within the last 2500 miles

    i re did the heatsink paste, new tires, custom seat, pannier racks, and custom panniers, toaster tan fork brace, f650 gs bars.

    i got the bike exactly how i like it, and the thing HATES ME.

    same thing i did when i had my GS, spent time, money, sweat, and love, and it shit the damn bed.

    i think the bmw airhead bikes, do not like me. i love them, but this is the 3rd one in a row that doesnt like me.
    #3
  4. elmontanero

    elmontanero Practicing...

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    I spend a load of time reading and few posts. I dig that bike of yours and wish I knew what was up.
    #4
  5. 110Mike

    110Mike Lug in my Kop

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    I did not see you replacing the coil?
    Did I miss it somewhere?

    Especially as you said you were taking her through rivers. So maybe water in the crackomatic coil?
    #5
  6. villageidiot

    villageidiot Long timer

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    not THROUGH rivers, just along them, rivers as a scenery, surely you dont think i rode it through trees too. haha

    i haven't changed any electrical parts yet.

    im keen on thinking, only because ive tested my coil already, and visually inspected it, that it isnt the coil, but either the bean can, or the module.

    the problem isn't really that it needs a few ignition parts (650 bucks if i changed them ALL) but what else it needs as well due to age. just a lot of stuff, that well, adds up, then when done, its still a 25+ yr old bike, and while im ok with it, my wife is a lot more financially "in tune" than i am and its a "waste" of money.

    i think with some money, and some love, itll last a long time, but the unforseens are what kills me and i cant rationalize it to the wife when its my daily only mode of transport
    #6
  7. chollo9

    chollo9 Screwed the Pooch

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    I'm not sure. It's not like you're putting money into a piece of shit, you are eliminating future issues as you go along. But then again, what you can sell one for, vs. what you put into one, is not exactly a financial windfall.
    #7
  8. orangebear

    orangebear Long timer

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    my r100gs is the same i sent loads of money on 2 parts then it runs fine for a short time then soming other brakes. my wife thinks i should just sell the bike and get a newish jap one as i only uses bikes.
    #8
  9. Padmei

    Padmei enamoured

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    Although I love my airhead I can see the day when i'll be sick of working on it & buy a bike (albeit soulless boring predictable reliable etc etc )that I don't have to think about. I keep a jappa in the shed to ride while working on the GS.
    My KLR was a good bike.
    #9
  10. pommie john

    pommie john Long timer

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    I really don't think of any airhead as an unreliable bike, My mate is a UK despatch rider and has done 250,000 miles on his and is aiming to do half a million.

    If it's an ignition problem ( as I think you're right in assuming) get a Boyer and a new coil and I would be surprised if it's not fixed for half the price of BMW ignition parts.

    A Boyer is $200 and a Dyna coil to go with it is $100 . That's a complete ignition system, ready to go.
    #10
  11. ozmoses

    ozmoses Ride On

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    The thing which strikes me is the "30 miles on a fresh tank..."

    Water in gas?

    Crud stirred up while filling the tank causing fuel starvation?




    Several weeks back I was convinced my left head was about to explode; turns out the exhaust nut had come loose...
    #11
  12. Bill Harris

    Bill Harris Confirmed Curmudgeon

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    It's a 30 year old vehicle probably with many 30 year old parts on it. Contrary to popular rumor, they are not created in the Black Forest by Bavarian elves. Made by people with parts that wear.

    Every part you replace is not so much keeping a POS running as it's like adding reliabilty (much like Chollo said). My first though on this is the Hall sensor, which can be replaced when you refurbuish the Bean Can (or for a few bucks more, get a Motorrad Alpha ignition unit).

    Your R80 is paid for. Figure how many parts you can buy for monthly "car payments".

    --Bill
    #12
  13. Renner

    Renner combustophile

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    run some tests?

    http://www.thunderchild-design.com/info.html#ignition

    I believe once the bike is sorted-out it will be cheap to operate, though I hear you when you say it's the "unknown's" that haunt us.
    ... like I used to keep a "crash" tool box in the trunk of the 02 till it stopped leaving me stranded... :D

    Still, as regards buying new to cut your losses, you'd have to get a KLR to break even.
    Plus it sounds as though you've worked nearly all the gremlins out of the R80.

    sorry that your few days riding & relaxing were cut short in an expensive way.

    ...reminds me of the time my alternator rotor crapped out in the White Mountains, which became apparent while riding home through the Mojave Desert.
    #13
  14. Puddle

    Puddle Been here awhile

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    So if you upgrade the electrics, all of them, what do you have left to do? I'd actually expect on a 30 year old machine to have to make this investment at some point, especially if you want some extra charging power and reliability. And after doing so, if you think everything else is solid, well then your good to go. Respectfully, put forward considering I can't see any pictures or details on what you've got into it. I picked up a great R80 G/S PD from a fellow inmate and have since upgraded the electrics, shock, and a bunch of other little stuff and she runs great. But even with that done, this past summer my coil gave out, lucky for me I had a spare and she fired right up. And today I have a broken spring in the transmission making the shifter floppy. So, the smallest of items will happen. But I'm good with that because the core of this machine is great and its a fantastic ride.
    #14
  15. villageidiot

    villageidiot Long timer

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    The problem with this situation is its not just the ignition.

    It needs the top end resealed as well and that has a potential to get ugly.

    Also the front brakes seem to be dragging, as indicated on one of the rotors.

    Then there's things like charging system (fine now, but what if), clutch?, wheel bearing, fork seals.

    I just can't afford for this thing to snowball into a bunch of dough. I'm a one bike, no car, no other option, and I think this one time, the wife may be right.
    #15
  16. acejones

    acejones Long timer

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    I feel your main. I have two Honda CT-90's that I have to work on every time I want to use them. Its probably because they sit most of the time. I have finally decided to sell them.
    #16
  17. chollo9

    chollo9 Screwed the Pooch

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    GOOD GOD MAN, haven't you ever heard of editing? What would happen if someone did this:

    And then she came on here and READ it? You'd be finished!:rofl
    #17
  18. Renner

    Renner combustophile

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    what new vehicle do you have in mind

    and is it possible to retain the beemer as a back-up, so you're not dependent on one moto?
    #18
  19. BMW Kurt

    BMW Kurt Hermeticist

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    California gas?
    #19
  20. villageidiot

    villageidiot Long timer

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    I'm going to look at the triumph bonneville, and moto guzzi v7 classic.

    Id love to get a new bmw, but they don't offer anything "classic" everything looks like a space ship.

    As for keeping the r80, no, it will have to go. We've been saving for a europe trip, and che said to take the savings and put it down on a new ride (did I mention that I have the best wife) I also said, maybe I should just get a car, but she said no. You hate cars, you need to ride.

    At any rate, I'll have to sell the r80 to replenish what I can of the euro trip fund.
    #20