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Thread: Bringing my R60/5 back to life.

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  1. #1

    Bringing my R60/5 back to life.

    Hello, I am a long time MOA reader, but this is my first post.

    So the back story.

    I purchased my R60/5 about 6 years ago from a couple women in Pasadena. I have wanted a toaster since I was 12, and I love this bike as much now as when I was 12. I have always done all the maintenance on the bike myself. I am no mechanic, but I am mechanically inclined, and always prefer to do a job myself if I can. I did all the regular maintenance, but the clutch was always in need of a replacement, since the day I purchased it. The bike has around 45k miles on it.

    4 years ago I was in a somewhat serious accident on the bike, when I lost control around a corner at night on an unfamiliar street in Los Angeles. My right header ran into a pole, throwing both my legs into the carb area.

    (this was the scene on a later day, my accident was at night)

    Here is my poor girl:

    but, she did fare better then myself:

    I ended up with a pretty serious break of my right leg, as you can see in the picture, and minor fracture of my left tibia (so, it was a wheel chair for me for a couple months). I am fine now, everything healed up nicely.

    While the bike looked sad and miserable in the above picture, she actually was alright. I replaced both fenders, the valve covers (with scratched up ones I already had, need to pick up some pretty ones at some point), and the pipes. I still need to track down a rear tail light assembly, but over all she was not in the worse of shape.

    So after that I did something I swore I would never do. I let her sit. I started her twice in the last 4 years, once to load her into a moving truck to drag her to SF, and once more when I started feeling really guilty about a year and a half ago.

    In my defense, I had a lot going on over the past 4 years, and it always gave me a good reason to not get her back into tip top shape. Insurance lapsed, and registration was suspended, then I moved, and my first place in SF only had parking, no garage, etc, etc, etc. In all honesty I think I was a little afraid to get back on my horse.

    But I feel ready now, and I have a great garage, and really really really miss her.

    here she is about a week ago:

    I charged up the battery and topped off the oil. The battery did not have enough juice to power the starter, so I kicked her for a while, and with the aid of some starting fluid she would turn over and sputter, then die. I think this is a good sign. Next I replaced the gas with new fuel, and swapped out the plugs. Same effect, just some sputter here and there then she died. I knew going there was a very high likelihood I would need to clean and rebuild the carburators.

    here is a picture of what may be one of the many reasons it was not able to fully start:

    I broke them both down, o-rings were shot, there was a lot of varnish build up in every hole etc. I blasted everything with carb cleaner and worked them with a tooth brush, then gave each side a 1 hour bath in chem dip, washed everything with water after.

    and put them back together with the old gaskets / orings / etc.

    Unfortunately the local BMW motorcycle shop does not have many parts in stock for the Bing type 53s, so I am going to have to track down the rebuild kits next week. I am hoping bavarian cycle works here in SF has rebuild kits, but I think it might be a long shot. I also sent Beemer shop in scotts valley an email. If I get no luck from either of them I guess I will be ordering the full kit from Bing (who I called twice last week and never got an answer) or Huck's.

    Next I started draining all the fluids, starting with the final drive:

    WOW. I really hope this is not a sign of things to come. The final drive fluid was thick, and full of sludge. This final drive was actually installed not long before my accident, so I am hoping there was just some nastiness in there already, and that is not a sign of what I am going to find with the rest of the fluids.

    What is the proper process to flush this thing out? Should I just fill it with gear oil, then drain again and replace? Is there something safe to put in there to eat all this away?

    Luckily the drive shaft fluid was clear as can be:

    Transmission fluid was also very clean:

    although here was a good bit of small metal flecks around the drain plug magnet (the streak next to it almost looks like metallic paint)

    Motor oil looked like chocolate syrup, but my valves were off prior to the accident, and I remember it fouling plugs and oil fairly quickly (I hope it is just valves)

    The drain plug for the engine oil was free and clear of any metals

    Yesterday afternoon I left her draining, I figure a good 24 hours of dripping out will not hurt anything:

    I have also replaced the air filter, and plugs. I removed the oil filter, and have a replacement. and new valve cover gaskets, and oil pan gasket (I want to remove the oil pan and inspect / clean a bit).

    I picked up a new battery as well, and new fluids from BMW.

    So hopefully after I get new gaskets / etc for the carbs I will be able to get her started. I was wondering if I should replace the floats too, I rebuilt both carbs about 5 years ago, but am thinking maybe I should just for good measure. Are there any other carb bits I should replace? And how should I set the carbs for a base setting to get her started? Hard to sync without her running.

    Also do you guys suggest anything to clean out that gunk in the final drive?

    Thanks in advance!
    Last edited by agent9; 06-24-2012 at 06:24 PM. Reason: updated image links

  2. #2
    Sir Darby Darryl Cainey's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Fenwick, Ontario Canada
    Quote Originally Posted by agent9 View Post
    Hello, I am a long time MOA reader, but this is my first post.

    Also do you guys suggest anything to clean out that gunk in the final drive?

    Thanks in advance!
    Fill it with varsol, turn, turn, turn, turn it, then drain, repeat till it comes out clean.
    Ambassador BMW MOA Ontario Canada
    President Niagara BMW Riders #298
    Knights of the Roundel #333
    1977 R100RS, (Retired) 1993 R100GS (just getting started)

  3. #3
    Registered User 88bmwjeff's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Walnut Creek, CA
    If you're still having trouble locating carb parts, call Bing to order them.

    Oh, and welcome to the Bay Area.
    Jeff in W.C.
    1988 R100 RT (the other woman)
    "I got my motorcycle jacket but I'm walking all the time." Joe Strummer

  4. #4
    Varsol, awesome! Thank you.

    88BmwJeff: Thanks! I have actually been here three years now, love it here. I tried to call bing a couple times last week, maybe I just need to keep trying.

    Does anyone have any advice, or anywhere they can point me to the proper way to set the carbs initially after the rebuild?


  5. #5
    Liaison 20774's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    San Antonio, TX
    When you call Bing, buy their handbook...very useful information. It provides initial settings for the carbs.

    Synching the carbs requires:

    - warming them up first on a 20-30 minute ride
    - place a fan in front of the bike to avoid overheating
    - adjust the idle mixture screw individually so that each cylinder runs at max speed. Turn CW until it stumbles; turn CCW until it stumbles...set in the middle
    - idle speed should be set so that each cylinder runs on its own at the same RPM, somewhere probably 500-600. Methods for shorting the cylinders have been discussed numerous times as well as is on Snowbum's website:

    - Snowbum also discusses how to set the throttle cable tension in the above article.

    (We'll apologize ahead of time for Snowbum's articles! Lot's of info; sometimes hard to dig it out).

    That's the basics. If you know of other Airheads near you, having them provide some help on this would be the best if you're doing it the first time.
    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!

  6. #6
    I have synced them before, and have a lot of practice with the weber idf40s on my car, so I am comfortable with getting them synced once the bike is running.

    The manual is definitely in the plan.

    Is there anything else not included in the rebuild kit I should be replacing?

  7. #7
    #4869 DennisDarrow's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Sugar Valley, Ga
    Kurt makes a good suggestion to go ahead and purchase the Bing manual. It may help you put all of those parts back together. It's kinda hard over time to figure out just exactly where and how that little gizmo came apart.

    For me, cleaning that trans and differential is the most important. Actually, I wish you could take them off the bike so you can turn them and move them around to get whatever solvent into all the nooks and crannies.........BUT YOU in the old days we did what you need to do with kerosene or diesel fuel........It applies now also.......Fill it up and turn it over and over and over...........Some might even say to ride it but that is overboard...... it again......perhaps 3 or 4 times........Then put in new el cheapo oil and ride it to get the whole think hot.....DRAIN permanent.............

    Proud that you are bringing this back to life......God bless.........Dennis

  8. #8
    Registered User 88bmwjeff's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Walnut Creek, CA
    Quote Originally Posted by agent9 View Post
    88BmwJeff: Thanks! I have actually been here three years now, love it here. I tried to call bing a couple times last week, maybe I just need to keep trying.
    Well, then the welcome is a bit belated. Anyway, you might want to join the Norcal Airheads group, if you haven't already.
    Jeff in W.C.
    1988 R100 RT (the other woman)
    "I got my motorcycle jacket but I'm walking all the time." Joe Strummer

  9. #9
    Thanks Jeff, joining socal airheads now.

    I have found varsol seems to be nearly impossible to locate here in california. I did pick up some Gunk MF3 MotorFlush. Smells like a turpentine or petrol, which I found promising for some reason. I put an approximate 50/50 mix of hypoid oil and MotorFlush into the final drive, and spun the rear wheel for 5 minutes or so. I then drained it, and added the same mixture again and repeated. Seems to be flowing clean now. Once I get the bike running I plan on running it for a week or so then do an additive (perhaps more gunk motor flush) flush of the whole system, and replace all the fluids once again.

    I have the carburetors back together, they always seem pretty easy to assembly as long as you do them one at a time. But a good manual is always a good idea. I was planning on grabbing that anyways.

  10. #10
    full carb rebuild kit and manual from bing came in yesterday. Was able to get the carbs finished, also rebuilt the pet cocks, and got everything together.

    Tried to start it, and she just wasn't catching (I dont think there was enough fuel in the carbs yet). Little tiny bit of starter spray and it fired right up. Starts without a problem now. Really a huge relief. I expected it to smoke like the dickens, but there was next to none. I do see a little on the left pipe when I give it a good rev, but I am hoping this is just burn off.

    Next is the points and valves. I know the vales are definitely off by quite a bit, and the push rods are not centered in the tubes, so I will be fixing all that up hopefully tomorrow, and give a shot at getting the carbs more balanced. Then I am moving on to the clutch before rebuilding the forks.

    Is there a good guide to balancing the carburators using the shoring method?

    I am going to order some new valve covers, try to track down a tail light assembly, and a complete new clutch. I would love to know if there is anything I am missing for the clutch, and if there is a favorite place to order from.

    here is my parts list:
    CLUTCH SPRING 21211250288
    PRESSURE PLATE 21211251801
    HD CLUTCH PLATE 21211236332
    SPACER WASHER (x6) 21210070511
    COMPRESSION RING 21211231666
    COUNTERSUNK HEAD SCREW (x6) 21211231463
    Oil Pump Cover Bolts (x4) 7119913464
    Flywheel bolts (x5) 11220016759
    (short) driveshaft bolts (x4) 26111230414
    clutch carrier bolts (x6) 21211338680
    clutch carrier bolt washers (x6) 21211242377

    A&S is coming in right around $500 for all of this, would love to know if anyone has a suggestion on somewhere else.

    I have already ordered and received all the tools, the rear main seal, and the oil pump seal from Northwoods Airheads.

    If anyone has a /5 tail light assembly or valve covers please give me a shout.


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