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Thread: Considering 1984 R80RT

  1. #1

    Considering 1984 R80RT

    I am pretty familiar with the /6 and /5 airheads, but am looking at a 1984 R80RT. Haven't had any experience with airheads newer than 1976. Any advice, comments, opinions, etc.? Anything peculiar I need to be on the lookout? How would you compare the ride/behavior of this bike versus a 1975 R90/6?


    Thanks much!


    Chris

  2. #2
    Prefers to play martinph's Avatar
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    I put over 100,000 on an 84 R80RT. Great bike! I traded to an 88 R100RT and it was not as good. I found the gear ratio on the R80 better suited for our speed limits. The R80 is a little down on power but not so much that it spoils the fun. I did put after market shocks on, that helped the handling. Of course, charging system left a lot to be desired.
    Martin. BMW MOA Ambassador.17748
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  3. #3
    Liaison 20774's Avatar
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    The 800cc bike is touted as being one of the smoothest around. The post '80 bikes have electronic ignition and the lighter flywheel/clutch carrier. A possible downside to the '81-84 models is the chance that it will experience valve face plastic deformation due to improper metallurgy in the seats...they didn't transfer heat well so it ended up staying in the valve face. Easily monitored and eventually fixed with '85-on valves and seats. The 800cc engines put out less heat, so the problem might be somewhat reduced for it.

    Somewhere in the late '84 run, the circlip might have been left out of the transmission input shaft.
    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!

  4. #4
    Registered User
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    Bought a 1984 R80RT last year. It is my first BMW and it has persuaded me that I like BMW. I enjoy the ride and I enjoy learning more about the maintenance.

    If I want more power I jump on the 2002 ZRX 1200R.

  5. #5
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    I rode a 1985 R80Rt from new until the early 90's , tried an oil head and did not care for it. I now ride an 85 R80 again and like it pretty well.

    Last weekend i rode a slightly modified 1984 R100RT and did not feel it was all that much more powerful than my R80.

    The 84 RT should be a good all around motorcycle, if it has had any care at all it should last a long time IMHO.
    If it needs any work or parts, everything is available and does not take a computer genius to fix.

  6. #6
    I came from a ST1300 to my '86 R80RT and do not consider it a step down. I love this bike and have been surprised what it is capable of. The ST was very unfriendly for maintenance but could cover great distances quickly. Since I got the R80 I have rebuilt the carbs, set valves, sync'd carbs etc, its all part of why I enjoy it so much.

  7. #7
    Old man in the mountains osbornk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DakotaMike View Post
    I came from a ST1300 to my '86 R80RT and do not consider it a step down. I love this bike and have been surprised what it is capable of. The ST was very unfriendly for maintenance but could cover great distances quickly. Since I got the R80 I have rebuilt the carbs, set valves, sync'd carbs etc, its all part of why I enjoy it so much.
    I've had my 86 R80RT for over 13 years and still like it very much. It has been very dependable and capable. When I went shopping for a R80, I only looked at 85 or newer because of the valve recession problem and the mono-shock in the rear.
    'You can say what you want about the South, but I almost never hear of anyone wanting to retire to the North.

  8. #8
    Registered User richardak's Avatar
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    I have had my '83 R100RT for about 4 years. I had the valve seats replaced last year (as well as a everything else in the heads) and it has been running wonderfully ever since. Parts seem to be readily available though expertise seems to be slowly disappearing. So you may want to be ready to do your own repairs.
    1983 R100RT hacked w/Cozy Rocket My blog
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  9. #9
    Registered User jgr451's Avatar
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    I sold my 71 R75/5 after i got my 84 R100RT.I loved the RT.Rode it from the west coast to the Trenton rally.I had no trouble with it ,except front brakes locking.New brake lines,not expensive,fixed that.I traded it on my 04 K1200GT and,while I love the latter,I missed the former.Replaced it with a 95 R100RT,and now,am happily doing the 2 motorcycle dance.

    I highly recommend the 84.
    Sometimes,nothing is a real cool hand.

  10. #10

    R80rt

    I owned an 84 R80RT. Many carefree miles. Smooth running and plenty of power. Loved the sound from the dual exhaust. The only drawback? I did not have a battery tender at the time and seemed to always have a dead battery! Other than that, there were many features on the R80 I preferred over my current 04 R1150RT.

    Bob Ridenour
    04 R1150RT
    07 F650GS (sold)

  11. #11
    Registered User GeorgeR1200RT's Avatar
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    I loved my 1984 R80RT and drove it many wonderful miles. Wish I had kept it instead of trading it for a K1200LT...just did not have storage space for two bikes.

    I beefed up the suspension and put on a Corbin seat. I bought the bike used.

    There were only three issues I ever had with the bike.

    - I had to replace the steering head bearings every 20,000 miles or so. They notched badly...replacement is not that costly or difficult.

    - The rotor went bad while on tour....apparently froze up and the battery was not getting any current. Found a dealership that replaced it in about an hour. Took longer to recharge the battery that fix the problem.

    - I found the bike wonderful for solo riding, but uncomfortable for two up touring. My passengers were "full figure" girls and I could stand to lose a few pounds...actually more than a few.

    I found parts and expertise easily available. The R80RT was my third airhead, so I know how to do many routine items.

    Took the bike coast to coast, to the Florida Keys and to Nova Scotia. Great machine!

    Hope you enjoy yours.
    George
    R1200RT. Previous K1200RS, K1200LT, R80RT, R100R, R75/5

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