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Thread: chang/ural air head musings...

  1. #1
    Rally Rat
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    chang/ural air head musings...

    I've been wondering about a few things.

    I've noticed that both the chinese and the russians have been making bastard airheads for a while now.

    Questions that come to mind are;

    1. comparison? ( yes, I -know- the quality is lower, but still, are they worth a damn?)

    2. potential source of new parts? ( again quality is an issue, but if they're made off of cloned/stolen tooling, would they match up?)

    Inquiring minds want to know.

  2. #2
    Liaison 20774's Avatar
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    There's a pretty good source for Ural parts in the US...lots of places are dealers. I think they're the better of the two. My impression is that they're not meant for the precision of the road at canyon carving speeds but the Urals are a good choice for off road pulling a hack. Maybe more rugged in that sense.
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  3. #3
    #4869 DennisDarrow's Avatar
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    Chink stuff is just a gook copyright rip off..........havent been doing it very long....

    Now the Ural.....that's a different story......they have been producing the ol R75 since shortly after they got some at Stalingrad from the thousands they captured from the Fatherlands big mistake.........Reversed engineered them and have been producing them ever since.........Mainly set up for sidecar use where the going gets really rough.........Parts are available and am so glad to seem them distributed out of the NW USA..........
    The design of the modern ones are a bit old fashioned......kind of a mix between a /2 and the /6 and /7.................

    Anyway.......you could do lots worse........Dennis

  4. #4
    Rally Rat
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    right, but I was wondering if cheng and ural parts could be used for...'non critical' things on a BMW.

    like fenders, handlebars, turn signals, that kind of thing. hell, even exhaust pipe.

    Yes, I'm a horrible man, and I'm not a purist, and I'm going to hell. I"m also quite possibly the cheapest bastard to ever ride a BMW, so the question stands...

  5. #5
    SECRETARYRICK
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    They're fun, just not BMW's

    Quote Originally Posted by Roguetek View Post
    I've been wondering about a few things.

    I've noticed that both the chinese and the russians have been making bastard airheads for a while now.

    Questions that come to mind are;

    1. comparison? ( yes, I -know- the quality is lower, but still, are they worth a damn?)

    2. potential source of new parts? ( again quality is an issue, but if they're made off of cloned/stolen tooling, would they match up?)

    Inquiring minds want to know.
    The Russian Urals are a huge step above the Chinese CJ's in quality and reliability. The Urals have a dealer network, where the CJ's are more of a singular point of sale and you have to deal with importation and customs and all that.
    With that said, both brands are a far, far way off from what you are used to with BMW or any other motorcycle brand. One Ural built on Tuesday will not be able to swap parts with one built on Friday, as the pieces will not be at all near the same size or whatever because they were made by different workers. When buying spare parts for these bikes, it's helpful to buy more than one at a time to hopefully find one that will fit where you want it to.
    That said, the Urals are a blast to ride. I would suggest checking all hardware and bolts prior to riding each ride, as things tend to shake a bit. I haven't had a chance to ride a CJ, but I got a close up look at one in a garage and I have to admit, I wouldn't put my ass on it. But then again, it's kind of like owning a custom bike and whoever put that particular CJ together probably didn't do it to my liking, but someone else might. But remember, they built thousands upon thousands of them throughout the years, and the overall build quality is just not up to (what I would consider) basic standards. If you're a machinist or someone who loves to tinker, it could be a lot of fun.
    Why not go with a /5 or something like it and put a hack on it? That's what I did, and it cost me just a little bit more but I tell you what, I can get on my bike and ride it where I want without (too much) worrying!
    Hope this helped.
    Rick

    Chinese CJ 750 Pictures:
    CJ 750 engine picture

    CJ 750 engine

  6. #6
    Huckleberry, Gilera &Toad kstoo's Avatar
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    I never heard of using Ural or CJ parts on an actual BMW but I remember reading a long time ago that Marusho parts were so good that they could be used as replacements. Good luck finding a Marusho today though.

    http://www.marusholilac.com/ml5.htm
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  7. #7
    Rally Rat gstom's Avatar
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    Not interchangeable

    As a happy Ural owner I will weigh in here. My Ural (1998 650cc w/sidecar) is an absolute blast for an afternoon putzing around on back roads. Could (or would?) I take it for a hundred mile trip?... Maybe... A multi hundred mile weekend trip? No!

    Did you read the "around the USA" thread/ ride report over on Adventure Rider by Mr. Cob? He rode a new 2 wheel drive 750 Ural on a journey around the USA. He had some minor problems, but he was being supported by Ural and reporting to them what improvements should be made to the bikes to make them a reliable distance machine. They are headed in that direction with their product development and marketing strategy.

    Even though the original Urals were a "reverse engineered" copy of the BMW, they have since evolved along a slightly different path. Granted, they retain the basic 2 cylinder boxer layout with shaft drive, but they are so different that there would only be the slightest chance of any parts interchangeability.

    A Ural fills a niche in my overall mix of bikes. If I were to have to get rid of all but one of my bikes, though, my 92 R100GS would be the winner, but the Ural would probably be the next to last to go. It makes me grin whenever I am on it.

  8. #8
    Rally Rat
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    Source for non-BMW parts is www.ibmwr.org in the parts substitute link.

    Now if Ural would just make a G/S.

  9. #9
    shire2000
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    1st of all, I know that we do have members of Chinese origin and am sure that some would find the language here to be offensive. Please refrain.

    2nd. the Chinese CJ bikes are not of high quality at all and most that we find here in North America are assembled from spare new and used parts. Extremely poor quality build. I know a few people who have assembled their own CJs and have had to rebuild or manufacture parts on their own. Great bikes if you enjoy constantly tinkering with them to keep them running.

    3rd. the Urals have gone thru major changes over the 60 odd years that they have been built. Their history is actually quite amazing if you care to read about them. Their present offerings are much better. they have vastly improved in the past 2-3 years. Yes, they are a copy of an old design, but with lots of improvements on that old design. Yes, they are heavy. Yes, they shake a bit and require some owner input to make them run the way we expect bikes to run. But when it all comes down to it, there is nothing available from any other company that really compares. What other bike has 2 wheel drive from the factory and is designed to go off road? As with anything that you take off road and beat the heck out of, you have to expect to do some maintenance. Even a BMW GS needs to have stuff done to it.

    If I was in the market for an off roading bike with a side car, the Ural would be my first and only choice.

    For on road, I would just add a side car to an existing bike that has a strong enough frame.

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