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Thread: saddlebags for 1970 r50/5

  1. #1
    crabmanjack
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    saddlebags for 1970 r50/5

    I just purchased a 1970 50/5 ,not museum ,but looks good and runs good,after my limited wrenching abilities. I cant find accessories such as original saddlebags ect. or accessories that look 70ish. plus Im a cheapskate and dont want to pay more for 1970 bags than the bike cost. can someone lead me in the right direction.thanks , crabmanjack.

  2. #2
    Liaison 20774's Avatar
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    Hey, crabman...(from "My Name is Earl" )

    This site http://w6rec.com/duane/bmw/bags/index.htm has pictures of various saddlebags. Wixom, Bates, and Buco were somewhat common in the /5 era. Check the MOA fleamarket as well as fleabay and the marketplace at ibmwr.org.
    Kurt -- Forum Liaison ---> Resources and Links Thread <---
    '78 R100/7 & '69 R69S & '52 R25/2
    mine-ineye-deatheah-pielayah-jooa-kalayus. oolah-minane-hay-meeriah-kal-oyus-algay-a-thaykin', buddy!

  3. #3

    Saddlebags

    Hey Crabman!

    Sorry to say, but a lot of the vintage bags go for a few bucks. Plan on $250 to $300 for an o.k. set at a swapmeet. Probably more through eBay.

    Big thing to watch for on the /5's is the whole short-wheel-base (SWB) versus long-wheel-base (LWB) business. You need the correct mounts for your bike. Then they should just bolt right on....

    --Steve

  4. #4
    crabmanjack
    Guest
    thank you earl, steve,Iwould have never thought about wheelbase when getting saddlebags and mounting.Im a cheapskate but Id be happy finding 70sbags for 3or 400$. when looking for vintage parts for my 50/5 they only go from real old up to 1969. Is my 1970 50/5 the same as these older years and will lets say 1968 or 9 50/5 parts be the same and fit. as tou can tell Im a new first time owner. thanks

  5. #5
    Hmmm, I don't wish to start an arguement, but Crabman, I'd urge caution. If you look closely at Annapolis' mounts, he has two sets of holes at the top front of the mount. That's where they attach to the subframe at the top shock bolt. I'd bet the farm that he uses one set of holes for his LWB bike, and the other for his SWB bike. I'd also make an educated guess that he uses slightly different hole positions on the bike frames for the lower front mounts.

    I had an R80 with mounts like Annapolis', EXCEPT that they had only one set of holes at the shock mount. I also had a nice new set of chrome mounts for the SWB /5, again with only one set of holes in the shock mounts. (picture attached.) Interestingly, Bob's BMW out in MD used to list different mounts for SWB and LWB bikes. Now it looks like he only has them for 1973 and later (which suggests LWB only).

    A lot depends on what the previous owners have done with your bike and the bag mounts. I have one /5 with three sets of holes drilled in the upper subframe (see pic) from different mounting configurations. Another /5 I have has only one set of holes and a spare subframe has two sets of holes.

    To drive home the point, I currently have an SWB /5 with Wixom bags. (Wixom's have a different kind of mounting system than the H-Bs we've talked about before.) The PO (previous owner) said that he had a heck of a time mounting the bags. When I looked closely, I could see why: he had used LWB mounts on an SWB bike. He had to trim the mounts at the upper front to make them short enough, and then drill new holes in the mounts. At the lower front, he removed the passenger pegs and used those holes for the lower, front mounts. (You can see where they are supposed to go in the pic) It works fine, except for the loss of the passenger pegs. But pity the fool who ever buys these bags and mounts separate from the bike!

    So I stand by my earlier thought: stick with SWB or LWB mounts, depending on what bike you have. However, I would add AnnapolisAirhead's experience, and note that there are some mounts with two sets of mounting holes, and they seem to work fine too.

    More than you'd ever want to know about bags, huh?

    --Steve
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  6. #6
    --Tony AnnapolisAirhead's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Landes25 View Post
    Hmmm, I don't wish to start an arguement, but Crabman, I'd urge caution. If you look closely at Annapolis' mounts, he has two sets of holes at the top front of the mount. ...
    That's exactly why there are two hole. No point in debating, I was just sharing what works on my two bikes. Good luck in your search.
    1971 BMW R75/5 | 1975 Moto Guzzi 850T Cafe | 1983 BMW R100RS | 1988 BMW R100GS
    1988 BMW K75 | 1998 BWM R1100RT | 2000 Moto Guzzi Quota 1100ES |2002 Moto Guzzi V11 LeMans

  7. #7
    crabmanjack
    Guest
    steve, thanks to you I am now an expert on saddle bags. my bike does have holes drilled as on your bike for the mounts, so now Ill start looking.by the way how come your /5 looks so much nicer than mine?

  8. #8
    mymindsok
    Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by crabmanjack View Post
    thank you earl, steve,Iwould have never thought about wheelbase when getting saddlebags and mounting.Im a cheapskate but Id be happy finding 70sbags for 3or 400$.
    I could be wrong but it sounds as if you plan to keep the bike. If so, good! That means that the expence of adding bags will be worth the cost and so, I'd advise you to bite the bullet and buy brand new bags.

    Why? Because the bags will be on the bike a lot and they really are one of the visual center pieces of the bike, that everyone will be looking at, whether they want to or not. Also, the latches on Krauser,BMW style bags wear out after a while, leading to them failing and dumping your property out onto the road. (Been there, done that and it's no fun.

    You can order brand new, period correct bags made by Krauser through several different suppliers and they now have improved and replacable latches, plus they lock onto the racks using clamps and keys. A huge, huge improvment!!

    Yes, you will spend about $500 but after owning 3 or 4 sets of used bags, trust me.... I consider mine well worth the price!

    Of course, if you want or have to go used, just make sure that you get bags with no cracks and with good latches (Now theres a rare combination to find on Ebay!) and then strap them to the bag racks, using a pair of nylon straps. Never trust the old style "Belt Buckle" latches. You have now been warned!

    PS: If you decide to look for a pair of period fiberglass bags, be carefull to find a set that have not begun deteriorating from the influence of sunlight, heat and vibration. Repairing and refinishing glass bags is a real chore to do well.

    Good luck!

  9. #9
    Hey Crabman!

    The reason that my bike looks so much better is that it is not my bike, it's my wife's. Mine would need a lot of Vaselene on the camera lens to look that good. Just to clarify, I'm talking about my R60/5, not my wife...

    Ken from Cali raises some very good points. There's a reason that 'Bungie buddies' have been available for years.

    --Steve

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