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Discussion in 'Airheads' started by Scott in Missouri, May 23, 2019.
That's interesting. Are you using the stock fork springs or progressive types ?
Snow flakes, solo seat, massive luggage capacity. Kinda into that meself.
That's a fine build, Scott.
I did not change anything so I would almost guarantee they are stock. Heavy weight oil makes a difference since BMW uses very thin weight fork oil by design. Budget build...nothing replaced unless its broke!
I ask because I have Hagon progressive springs on my '82 R100 and I find them a tad harsh. Original springs with heavier oil might be an idea for me though. Cheers !
I can appreciate the other work in this thread, but these lights just make it too cheesy. Every cheap Harley chopper gets the repop Model A (it's not a '32) tail light, although usually the one that says STOP. Maybe if you made this one say HALT, that'd be kinda funny.. otherwise this and the turn signals don't belong on an otherwise cool bike.
I just had to paint the fender yesterday before leaving for the BMW National Rally...If I didn't I knew I would be tired of being asked, "Why didn't you paint the fender?"
Very nice build, really well done. You'll be started on something else before you have 10,000 miles on it I bet.
Wicked Nice Bike......
This is a great build! Could you please tell me more the handlebars and the new aftermarket controls?
Absolutely Chris- I was shocked there was not more interest in this mod. Really---- This is the greatest bang-for-the-buck of the entire build. The improved ridability is exceptional. My friends in the Airheads rode the bike and were amazed at the crispness of the snappy throttle and the much improved braking and progressive feedback the brakes have. Here are pics of the two items I purchased of Amazon. I am not saying they are the best because I'm certain they are not. I was trying to determine if it could all be done and went with what I could find. What I found is that the stuff is very good and I just ordered another set for another GS bike project.
Throttle: I wanted a snappy return without any drag. Stock Airhead throttles are amazingly heavy feeling to me. Ever grabbed an Airhead throttle and had it snap back? It's much different. So, what does it take? You have to cut and make ends to use a splitter. You can contact Flanders in CA is you thinks it is too difficult, but I found it to be fun. I could post pic after pic of me cutting a 3/8" bolt and drilling it to use as a splitter.
Master Cylinder: The bore size of the MC needs to be right so I would get close to what a stock one is. Mine was a 16 mm and I got a 17 mm and its good, BUT i went from a dual caliper to a single and therefore should have got a much smaller bore. I corrected this for the next build and got the same stuff, but in 12.7 mm bore.
Clutch: The clutch will be sooooo much easier to pull and the adjustable levers are very comfortable. However---- You have to measure the length your stock clutch lever/perch pulls your cable...literally...mark it, pull it, then duplicate that amount of pull in the cable. What do I mean? The distance from the ball at the end of the cable (inside the clutch lever) to the end of the perch/adjuster was longer by about 3/8" than this new fancy stuff. You have to have the same amount of pull to engage your clutch, so I made a spacer for the end of the cable. One could also try to make up the difference with a standard adjuster also. However you do it- Do it.
Handlebars: I can use either low bars for zipping around or the higher bars for long trips. I have been using the higher style for comfort. You can get whatever height you want from Rocky Mountain ATV- These are "Tusk" which are their house brand. I alwyas get the highest "rise" bar they have- These are the "ATV" bend and get your hands up in a comfortable position. I could use a pair of Rox Risers for a long trip, but these are close enough. The grip heaters are Bikemaster brand and work excellent- I have used them on all my bikes. I used to pay double the price for Oxfords until I bought a bike with these...then I switched for half the price.
So why did I do all this? Simple- Because the BMW replacement part I need for the stock controls was $170 and all of the new controls, throttle, handlebars and switches were $120.
I probably won't be able to help you much more than this, but want you to know you can do this if you really want to. If you are serious about this mod, you will need to do a few Youtube searches on making cable ends. You would also need to have a good understanding of brakes and make want to use this also. https://www.vintagebrake.com/mastercylinder.htm
Here is a snapshot of a post I made on Bing to Mikuni conversions...same thing here...a splitter is a splitter and a cable doesn't know if it's opening a Bing or Mikuni.
The thread is here: https://advrider.com/f/threads/bmw-...ersion-so-easy-a-caveman-could-do-it.1362825/
Here is the splitter information:
I had to finish up the two-into-one cable system to get from the new style throttle/cable to the cables. I had an old splitter housing, but the inside connector had two issues to fix. First, it was brittle and broken. Second, the cable end seats were super small and tight to get the cables in and out of. I remade the center connector from a 7/16" bolt and was able to drill the seats larger which meant I could solder on a larger end for added strength and confidence.
You would think drilling the small cable holes and counter-sinking the seats was finiky, but I think cutting the side openings on the bandsaw was tougher.
Thank you for this wealth of information! Where did you source your handlebars? Are you still swapping between low and high or did you settle on one style?
On the road to the BMW National Rally.
Great info here! Thx for the details! After all the miles, what are your thoughts on the bars, controls and brakes?
Thank you- Hmmm...another good question.
Controls: I am very happy with the performance all of the controls, and as a matter of fact I just ordered a second set of everything for another build. The only change I made was on the Master Cylinder where I went from a 17 mm bore to a 12.7 mm bore which may be a better ratio for a /7 caliper. The throttle was excellent and the clutch pulls very easy with enough draw length also.
Handlebars: Now to be totally honest, I was in pure agony most of the ride and weekend with a terribly sore/stiff neck. This is personal preference as I saw a lot of my friends in their 70s with small "S" bars leaned over all weekend without any issues and they love the position. I felt like the seat position and bars were still too far apart for long-distance comfort. I looked at all the stock Airheads and the bars have a really long pull-back bend to cover the real estate over the tank. Even though I buy the "ATV" bends to get them as high as I can at about 5" height, they still pull me forward a bit. I had Rox Risers on before during the test build and they are much better for standing up and I can also bend them backward too- I wouldn't take this on another long trip without Rox Risers. These bars are fine for zipping around/off-road and on other bikes that have a shorter distance from the seat to the tripple-tree mounts.
Grip heaters: Don't leave home without them at under $50- Bikemaster brand.
Tires: Dunlop 404s were good. Very inexpensive compared to the 402/401 so I thought I'd try them. I will probably switch all my vintage bikes to 404s from now on.
Luggage/Racks: Since this was designed to be an Airheads Rally bike, the signature item in this build was the racks/panniers. They worked perfect and held way more than I needed and I didn't even need/use a tank bag.
Windshield: Yah, looks right, but what can I say...would a bikini keep you warm in winter? A little, but not much. It does the job of shielding my home-made dash and wiring while kicking the wind around it and thats all I really wanted out of a free HD take-off. Would I replace it for a long trip? Probably not- I like it fine.
Lights: I felt I need much brighter tail/brake lights and spent a lot of time looking for options at the Rally. I will probably make an LED solution for this. Most of the best solutions I saw were attached/around the license plate, but are ridiculously expensive.
Oil: I added about 1/2 quart over about 2000 miles since the build. I thought this 80k engine could/would use more. I think the highway speeds may use a bit more than locally, but still nothing serious. This bike seems to like 62-65 MPH best. If I had a tachometer I'd compare to HP/Torque/redline as I'm sure its the sweet spot. A friend recommended changing to a higher final drive, but I don't ride over 70 MPH anyway and I think the 650 benefits from low gearing 90% of the time for me around the rolling hills of the Ozarks as I only hit 5th gear on the highway for 55+ MPH.
Last, despite my love of Mikunis, I have been developing a new appreciation for Bing CV carbs. I still think all the Mikuni conversions I have done really improved the bikes they are on, but I will probably give the Bings a second look more often. I got almost 50 MPG with great performance on an overloaded 650. The entire trip was about 1400 miles and we are already planning the 2020 National Rally to Great Falls, MT. WooHoo!
Love your recent threads Scott, a lot of No Nonsense info to be had. Thanks
Thank you very much- Nice to hear that.
...The internet can attract some very aggravating people/negative comments and I immediately had to learn what the ADV Rider "Ignore" function is for- Highly recommended.
After richening the Carbs and cleaning off all the road grime I unloaded the R100 frame and parts I got at the National Rally...
...and thought...I have a lot of extra parts...with a little help from Amazon...and a call to Euromotelectrics...Maybe...
Then I dug this CRF450 out of the scrap pile and thought....
A small update: I found a new/better switch option than I used. I used the original switches just to get everything working and knew they were inexpensive and would probably get replaced when I found something better. Well, I found something better- I just bought this Tusk universal switch and it seems to be way better quality. The switch have a "positive" switching and overall quality feel. Be careful to order the correct one though- They sell a switch that looks almost identical, but the headlight switch is on/off and would be for a dirt bike or ATV I imagine. They also have a matching on/off switch for the right side if you want/need one.