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Thread: R27 Mileage

  1. #1

    R27 Mileage

    The odometer on my 1964 R27 shows about 8K miles. Haven't tried to start it. Any suggestions about how I can get an estimate of the mileage before I run it? Really the question is should I run it a while and do some evaluation on my own or send it off for an engine tear-down now to check the bearings, crank and slinger. It was last on the road in 1977. Is there a way to determine if the engine oil is detergent or non-detergent?

  2. #2
    Liaison 20774's Avatar
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    These are some of the age-old questions or issues that pop up when acquiring an older bike or even car. As for mileage, if you had any relationship with the previous owners or maybe info from titles in the past, that could help. You can maybe make an estimate of mileage by looking at things like foot pegs. Obviously, the elements are going to do some damage, but do you see wear marks which would be from boots on them? If there are serious divots and wear spots, then 8K miles can't be right. Maybe 108K?

    I don't think you can figure out what the oil was...although I suppose if there was something in the crankcase, you could ask an oil analysis company what they might suggest. I think you might just let the past go on the oil and figure out what you want to do going forward. Again if you had past maintenance records, that would be extremely helpful.

    For my two vintage bikes, I did the best mechanical restoration I could to get them up and running...change fluids, service bearings, cables, clean carbs, new rubber, etc. Then I rode them for a short period of time, like a year so I could get to know any other quirks that needed addressing. If you see something during the restoration that troubles you, then change your plans and dive into the major overhaul. But if things clean up and fall into place, then try some basic near home running and go from there.

    On my R25/2, the odometer said something like 15K kilometers. But for something that old, and used in police service in Germany, was that 115K or maybe even 215K? Even thought I have papers regarding registration, I don't have maintenance info...I hope to get that some time in the future if I can get myself over to the small German town and see if they still have records. I do know that the cylinder was already at 1st over, so it's pretty clear the bike got plenty of use.
    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
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    I think it boils down to if you trust the 8000 miles. Not even broke in. No matter I would do what Kurt suggests but if you trust the 8000 miles just forget the slinger. Don't worry about that slinger.

    Not sure anyone uses non-detergent anymore. When you remove the oil pan place that rare earth magnet in the bottom of the pan. Enjoy!
    1980 R100T
    1971 R50/5
    G650GS
    1947 James ML

  4. #4

    Drop the oil pan

    Drain all the fluids, final drive, transmission and motor in separate containers and take a good look for residue like crud or metal shavings. Drop the oil pan and take a good look inside and then up inside the cavity above it (engine base), if its pretty clean and free of solids or crud type stuff I would just pull the pickup screen, clean it and refill all the oils (engine oil, transmission & final drive) with the recommended oil. Pop the valve cover off and check the valve clearance and for anything that looks not good. Clean the spark plug and check and replace the points if needed and get the ignition set up correctly and check for spark. Check the carburetor (float, jets and slide) and make sure the gas line is good. Add some fresh gas and give it a few tickles and then a few kicks. It should start right up and idle fairly good, look for leaks (oil, exhaust and gas) if its good let it run for about ten minutes while you listen for funny (bad noises) while its running and on the center stand run it through the gears. Shut it off after about ten minutes and let it sit over night and check for leaks. If its all good take it for a ride around the neighborhood and beyond.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by 69zeff65 View Post
    Drain all the fluids, final drive, transmission and motor in separate containers and take a good look for residue like crud or metal shavings. Drop the oil pan and take a good look inside and then up inside the cavity above it (engine base), if its pretty clean and free of solids or crud type stuff I would just pull the pickup screen, clean it and refill all the oils (engine oil, transmission & final drive) with the recommended oil. Pop the valve cover off and check the valve clearance and for anything that looks not good. Clean the spark plug and check and replace the points if needed and get the ignition set up correctly and check for spark. Check the carburetor (float, jets and slide) and make sure the gas line is good. Add some fresh gas and give it a few tickles and then a few kicks. It should start right up and idle fairly good, look for leaks (oil, exhaust and gas) if its good let it run for about ten minutes while you listen for funny (bad noises) while its running and on the center stand run it through the gears. Shut it off after about ten minutes and let it sit over night and check for leaks. If its all good take it for a ride around the neighborhood and beyond.
    Excellent advice that gels very nicely with all of the other advice I have received since I got the bike. There are a lot of nuggets of savy in the quote. Additionally, I have been advised to use VR1 10-30 wt in the engine and VR1 40 wt in the transmission. Another good suggestion has been to put a strong magnet in the sump... good idea!

  6. #6

    I would suggest you use a different transmission oil

    Check out the Bench Mark Works website and maybe even put a call into them regarding the transmission oil. I believe they recommend a GL-4 gear oil due to the make up of some of the metals found in the gears and or bearings. Better safe than sorry.

  7. #7
    Liaison 20774's Avatar
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    The issue with using motor oil versus a gear oil has to do with seals. For the twin cylinder bikes, BMW changed the seals at a certain stage in the production which allowed for use of gear oil. The service bulletins list VINs for the twins which suggest the seal change happened in the 1968/1969 timeframe. I have not seen the service bulletins for when they did that on the single cylinder bikes but think it would have been done across all products. Prior to that engine oil was used as it didn't seep through the seal. The viscosity of a 40w engine oil is not that different than a 90w gear oil. The difference is the chemical makeup.

    If the seals have been changed, by all means use gear oil.
    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!

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