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Thread: Questions about a 1970 R60/5

  1. #1

    Questions about a 1970 R60/5

    This is my first post, so hello to everyone. I am new to this board, so I hope I'm in the right place. Here's my story:

    I have a 1970 R60/5 in reasonably good condition. It hasn't been on the road in years however. The bike was bought new by my Dad. I inherited it when he passed away a few months ago, and it has now become my project. I have taken some detailed pictures of it, which I will post when I get home, but as I said, it seems to be mechanically sound.

    Yesterday I began fooling around with it. I first removed the Windjammer fairing, which I just don't find attractive. I know it has its practical purposes, but it's not for me. I didn't mess with the headlamp at this point - that'll come later. After removing the fairing, I decided to go ahead and check the carbs. I downloaded a good tech article on rebuilding carbs from 5United.com, so I felt like I had enough information to at least get started. I started out by draining the tank, which was 3/4 full. I'm concerned that the tank may have some significant rust issues. Again, I'll deal with that later, though any suggestions on how to handle this would be greatly appreciated.
    So, I removed both carbs and inspected them to find that they were perfect! No gunk, no grime - perfectly clean. I now suspect that Dad cleaned them up back when he was still able to get around. Anyway, I do need some fuel line, as the lines on both sides were completely rotten. At the moment, that's as far as I gotten - I have both carbs off of the bike and that's where I've left it for now. I do need a gasket kit for the bowls (anyone recommend a good parts dealer?), but otherwise, I think I'm in good shape.

    I also discovered that the tires are showing substantial cracking, to the point that new rubber is a must before taking this thing out. Could anyone recommend a good, reliable (and not too expensive) tire for the R60/5? As I noted, I'll post some pics later and provide some updates as to how the project is going. I hope to get some input and advice from those of you who have experience with these early bikes, as I am a novice at this sort of thing. I'm not the mechanic my Dad was, and now I find myself faced with a project that demands a level of technical expertise that I may not possess. Regardless, I intend to get this bike road-worthy again, so I'll most likely be pestering the hell out some of you throughout this adventure. Thanks in advance for any advice, tips or just general encouragement. More to come...

    Frank

  2. #2
    Loose Cannon flash412's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FrankF
    I have a 1970 R60/5 in reasonably good condition. It hasn't been on the road in years however.
    ...
    I first removed the Windjammer fairing, which I just don't find attractive. I know it has its practical purposes, but it's not for me. I didn't mess with the headlamp at this point - that'll come later.
    ...
    I'm concerned that the tank may have some significant rust issues. Again, I'll deal with that later, though any suggestions on how to handle this would be greatly appreciated.
    ...
    So, I removed both carbs and inspected them to find that they were perfect! No gunk, no grime - perfectly clean. I now suspect that Dad cleaned them up back when he was still able to get around. Anyway, I do need some fuel line, as the lines on both sides were completely rotten. At the moment, that's as far as I gotten - I have both carbs off of the bike and that's where I've left it for now. I do need a gasket kit for the bowls (anyone recommend a good parts dealer?), but otherwise, I think I'm in good shape.
    ...
    I also discovered that the tires are showing substantial cracking, to the point that new rubber is a must before taking this thing out. Could anyone recommend a good, reliable (and not too expensive) tire for the R60/5?
    The headlight SHOULD pop out of the Windjammer and fit the stock headlight shell.

    http://www.bingcarburetor.com/ for gasket set.

    Check with http://swmototires.com/ for tires. CALL (with your tire sizes) and see what they recommend for your bike. Replace the tubes, too.

    Visit a BMW dealer and buy one meter (or a yard, whichever the parts guy can figure out how to sell you) of fuel line. There is supposed to be a crossover between the airbox and the transmission with a couple of T's between the petcocks and carbs. Install all that stuff.

    If I were you, I would get two of the $3 sintered bronze fuel filters that dirt bikers use and install one after each petcock. I would change the tires & tubes, install a new battery and take the thing for a ride around the neighborhood, just to see if there is anything else wrong with it.

    I would come home and drain the engine oil and remove the filter, drain the transmission, rear end and swingarm. Replace all the oils (and the filter). Maybe even change the fork oil (use 10wt), too.

    THEN I would ride it around and around the neighborhood until it was good and hot. Repeat this a couple of times.

    Check the valve clearances (cold) and take a look at the air filter, possibly replace it. Take a look at the points, maybe replace them and the condensor if warranted. Check the timing.

    Grease the swingarm and steering head. Maybe repack the wheel bearings as that gives you an opportunity to look at the brakes.

    After that... you're good to go. Ride it. Look for a replacement tank on eBay. If you happen to need a yellow-copper toaster for it, I have one in my attic in excellent condition.
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    - BMW MOA Lifetime Member #18854

  3. #3
    Flash412,

    Thanks for the great reply! I was talking to a friend at lunch about the bike and we both came to the conclusion about adding the fuel filters. Regarding the headlamp, I was thinking that this might be a good time to upgrade. I have an old Porsche 911 ('79) as well - one of the standard upgrades for a car of that era is new headlamps - the originals just don't provide enough light. I kinda figured that the original BMW lamps would also be weak in comparison to today's lamps.

    This To-Do list will definitely get me well on my way. Again, thanks for taking the time to provide such a thorough response. Take care,

    Frank

  4. #4
    Liaison 20774's Avatar
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    Be careful on the upgrade to the headlight and consider what the wiring can handle. There's been quite a bit of discussion on the Airhead list about this...wiring sizes, use of relays, etc. That stuff goes over my head. I've got a Halogen bulb in my Luftmeister headlight...it's been so long I don't remember if the bike originally came with an incandescent bulb or not...I don't even know the wattage of the current Halogen. Maybe someone on these lists can set us straight on what the right approach is.

    Kurt in S.A.

  5. #5
    Registered User Bob_M's Avatar
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    Welcome to the fun

    Hey Frank
    That sounds like a sweet old bike. Be advised that the headlight is pretty well mated with the charging system. It is easy to overload the system with modern lights and gadgets. (Upgrades are available in lighting and with the charging system.) Your bike sounds like it is pretty much original. There is a resale advantage in keeping it as original as possible. My 1982 airhead is much altered (for rideability) so I am not exactly a purist, but rather a voice of caution: if you try to make an old bike "better" than new it is an expensive uphill journey where you will never recoup your expenses. The old girl has her charms when everything works as new and you may wish to embrace that. If you want to make it a cafe custom or new-it-up to suit your needs go on ahead (it is just a motorcycle, not the Sistine Chaple) Just realize you lose resale value when you deviate from the original design. During your restoration don't scrimp on brakes or tires (In my humble opinion) good tires and good brakes are more valuable than they are expensive.

    Send pics. we love that stuff

  6. #6
    Thanks for the advice guys. I didn't think about the wiring issues. That's a good point. Come to think of it, it really isn't very likely that I'll ride the bike at night. I'll primarily use it for short day trips.

    Bob,

    I completely agree with you. I don't want to alter the bike or try to make it into something it's not. I prefer it in its original condition - I too appreciate the charm of older vehicles. I only thought about upgrading the headlamps for safety reasons, but otherwise, I just want to get her cleaned up and running. She's got plenty of character and has been in the family a long time. By the way, she's only got 26,000 miles on her! I'll post those pics in a bit. Thanks again.

    Frank

  7. #7
    By the way, the tank on my /5 is one of the "toasters" - is this correct for a 1970? I thought toasters came along later??? Could someone lead me to a pic of a period-correct tank? Thanks.

    Frank

  8. #8
    Loose Cannon flash412's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FrankF
    By the way, the tank on my /5 is one of the "toasters" - is this correct for a 1970? I thought toasters came along later??? Could someone lead me to a pic of a period-correct tank? Thanks.
    Toaster tanks started with the dawn of the /5. But most early bikes were sold with the bigger "touring" tank, that had big rubber knee pads. It was later that they added the chrome battery covers to /5. If the bike has not battery cover mounts, then it is correct NOT to have the side covers. The chrome sidecovers made the "toaster" tank a more attractive selection to some folks.

    BTW, "toaster tank" did not become a popular term in the vernacular until well into the /6 era.
    Click here for Tales of Motorcycles and Life
    - BMW MOA Lifetime Member #18854

  9. #9
    James.A
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    I have experienced reliability troubles with a variety of high intesity (HID) lamps in my /5's, including a very expensive PIAA element that only lasted 6 weeks.
    I have since re-fitted the OEM type parts.

  10. #10
    Focused kbasa's Avatar
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    Hey Frank,

    Welcome aboard. You might want to fill out your profile so folks know where you live. You'll get some great suggestions about where to look for parts and may find someone knowledgable in your area that can give you a hand.





    dave
    Dave Swider
    Marin County, CA

    Some bikes. Some with motors, some without.

  11. #11
    Loose Cannon flash412's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by woodnsteel
    I have since re-fitted the OEM type parts.
    There is an H-4 kit for /5 available. Try Blue Moon... http://www.bluemooncycle.com/.
    Click here for Tales of Motorcycles and Life
    - BMW MOA Lifetime Member #18854

  12. #12

    Pics!

    Again, thanks to all for the great responses. I do need to complete my profile by the way. Regarding the tank/battery cover, my bike does have the polished cover plate. But, rather than trying to describe it, here is a link to some pics - if anyone sees anything odd or unusual, please let me know.

    http://community.webshots.com/myphot...ecurity=HmPjOQ

    ON EDIT: FWIW, my profile has now been updated. Thanks.
    Last edited by FrankF; 06-14-2006 at 01:31 PM.

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by flash412
    There is an H-4 kit for /5 available. Try Blue Moon... http://www.bluemooncycle.com/.
    This brings up a good point. I'm not sure how you guys feel about posting past experiences with retailers. I certainly don't want to jeopardize anyone's business, but the experience I have had with Blue Moon cycles left alot to be desired. My Dad and I drove 4 hours to take a look at a frame to replace a bent one on a 1978 R/100. When we got there, the frame was not as described and we were essentially dismissed. I couldn't believe the attitude we were met with. Oh, they have plenty of nice bikes for sure, but the customer service aspect was completely missing. In fairness, this was many years ago. I'm sure things could have changed. But the experience left a sour taste in my mouth for Blue Moon. YMMV....

  14. #14
    James.A
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    A few notes from the pictures; The front turn signals on the fairing are OEM for the bike and should fit up perfectly. The flat front lense looks right but I can't tell for sure from the view. Does it say Bosch on the bottom embossed inside? The rubber cover on the empty headlight shell is nice because it keeps grime out of the wiring. However, I experienced a loss of paint when I pulled the tape holding it in place on the second /5 I ever bought. The Vetter I removed from that bike had a sealed beam, but the original owner had saved the headlight assembly. I was lucky on that one. You MAY experience difficulty getting the carbs to seal up on the intake spigots on the heads. A carbeuretor manual from Bing Agency is a good thing to have for reference. All in all, it looks like a complete if not grungy old bike. Congratulations and enjoy.

  15. #15

    Smile

    Congratulations:

    Although you do have a project, it looks together and I'm sure that you will enjoy it more when it's on the road since it was you Dad's bike. A few observations from the pictures:

    1. Don't ride this bike on these tires.
    2. The front fender appears to be other than stock, not meant as a critisism.
    3. The rear shocks appear to be leaking oil indicating replacement required.
    4. The stock headlight on a Vetter Windjammer was a 7 inch size compatible with the U.S. cars at the time and would not fit the /5 headlight nacelle. I recommend getting a /5 H4 conversion (which I have on mine).
    5. The chrome side covers started in '72 model year, just an observation.
    6. The gas tank with the pin stripes around the chrome panels is an indication it came from a 73 1/2 long wheel base model (which mine did).
    7. Re-build those carbs. the good news is you're float bowls look in good shape. Also, replace the rubber sleeve beteen the intake tube and carb and the fiber sleeve between the carb and head (inside the barb body). Buy the manual from the Bing Agency to assist in the re-build.
    8. Based on the dark color of the carb floats, I'd replace them. The stock color was an off-white and made from a fiberglass material that absorbed alchohol. The dark color is an indication of absorbing alcholhol from gasoline. Alchohol proof float kits are available from the Bing Agency.

    You'll have a lot of fun getting it back on the road not to mention when you're done

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