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Thread: 1965-R69S What' it worth?

  1. #1
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    1965-R69S What' it worth?

    I have a chance to purchase an R69S with roughly 20k miles. It hasn't been started in maybe 15 years. Gas tank and carbs are varnished bad. No back tire. Damper assembly for the front end is missing. Has Volkswagen mufflers. Headlight assembly is bent from crash. Speedo has plastic cover w/ no chrome ring. It does have some kind of fiberglass bags. The frame is pretty rusty back by the battery. The engine is not stuck but I can crank it over by hand. It belongs to a widow and I don't know how much to offer her for it. I want to be fair.

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    In 1990, I bought a '67 R60/2 in similar condition, except running. In addition to the aftermarket mufflers, it had ape hangers and the seat had been recovered by some automotive shop. I paid $1500. As you probably know, /2 parts are expensy.

  3. #3
    Cannonball Rider #52 darrylri's Avatar
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    Most parts are all available, and while some might think they're expensive, they're no more expensive than you'd expect to pay for new parts for your modern BMW. For example, I bought a new rear fender for my 1953 R51/3 from BMW and got it for $600 in primer.

    Prices for a fully restored R69S can breach $20k. But prices fall of quickly as the condition declines.

    There has long been a rule of thumb about these bikes: $5k to buy, $5k to mechanically restore and $5k to cosmetically restore. Those numbers are out of date.

    Possible problem areas can include:
    • The magneto coil: while the magneto arrangement is robust, the windings in the coil are insulated with shellac, which breaks down over time, regardless of usage. Magnetos are not common and few know how to diagnose them. Repros and rewound coils are available.
    • Soft or "butterheads": in the mid 60s, the firm that was casting the blanks for BMW's heads changed the alloy, apparently to reduce air pollution emissions, without telling BMW. These heads, which are indistinguishable from others, can deform in use, trapping the through bolts that mount it to the cylinders, losing spark plug inserts and allowing the stanchions that the rockers mount on to sink, running out of adjustment room.
    • Bottom end wear: the cranks are built up with captured one piece conrods and big end roller bearings. If this area is worn, it requires pushing the crank apart, refreshing everything, pushing it together again, and getting it perfectly trued. There are only a very few people who can do this service. This can be exacerbated by...
    • Slinger cleaning. There's no oil filter in these engines comparable to what we're used to. A low volume pump directs oil to the crank main bearings; when the oil exits on the inside face of these bearings, it drops into a sheet metal disk with a cupped outer lip -- a slinger. The oil is then directed into the hollow crank pins and dribbles out into the conrod big end bearings. These slingers fill up with wear and crud, and then the bearings stop getting oil. The bottom end of the motor must be disassembled to inspect and clean these slingers.
    --Darryl Richman, forum liaison
    http://darryl.crafty-fox.com

  4. #4
    Life Member SCJACK's Avatar
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    By your description, I would say that it's really not worth more than $1000. I would make a list of everything that you know it needs and add up the prices before taking on this project. I completely restored one of these around 15 years ago and it wasn't cheap then. I think that at today's prices, you would spend a minimum of $7-$8k to mechanically restore and $5-$6k to cosmetically restore (and I may be low). The old /2's were beautiful machines to look at but I sold mine to someone who wanted to fool with the quirks of a /2. Personally, I enjoy owning and maintaining the 1981-1985 airheads due to the improvements that were made by the factory by this time and the ease of overall maintenance. Good luck with your decision.

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    Quote Originally Posted by scjack View Post
    By your description, I would say that it's really not worth more than $1000.
    If it doesn't have a title, it's not even worth that...depending upon what state you are in, it can be a living hell trying to get it titled...in many states, you've got to bring it back to full running condition before it can be inspected and the VIN verified...and if something happens that it can't be registered, you've just poured all that money down the tubes that you have spent to get it to that condition... Ergo, a total pig in a poke...no title, worth no more than 500 bux, maybe less, in my opinion...

  6. #6
    Scraper JohnW67's Avatar
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    For what it's worth...

    Here's a link to a '69 R60/2. I saw this one in person. Needs a lof cosmetic work, but runs nice. The dealer sells quality bikes that have been worked over mechanically.

    http://www.re-psycle.com/pre_owned_list.asp
    John Woods
    1976 R60/6

  7. #7
    --Tony AnnapolisAirhead's Avatar
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    Even without the title, I haven't seen any R69S bikes for under $2500. I'd go $1k. Maybe more if the slingers were done by a reputable mechanic. The R69S bikes seem to retain more value than other R60 bikes, etc.

    Depending on the year, the heads had some issues IIRC from reading Duane Ausherman's site. Even still, an R69S is a very desirable classic and at $1-2k you'd probably be in pretty good shape even if you had to do a frame up restoration IMO.
    '83 R100RT'd
    '71 R75/5 SWB
    '06 KLR 650

  8. #8
    Administrator 20774's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JOHNW67 View Post
    Here's a link to a '69 R60/2.
    Something's wrong with the information provided in the ad. The VIN given can't be for an R60/2...a '69 R60/2 would have been something like 181xxxx. The VIN given fits an '69 R69S. The bike appears to be an R60/2 based upon the valve covers...can't see the cylinder fins to be sure it's not an R50/2. But the VIN and the description don't match.
    Kurt -- Forum Administrator ---> 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!

  9. #9
    Scraper JohnW67's Avatar
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    Not sure what's gong on there Kurt. Maybe just a clerical error or the frame and motor don't match?
    John Woods
    1976 R60/6

  10. #10
    Administrator 20774's Avatar
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    Yeah, something's not right. If I were interested, I'd be asking more questions.
    Kurt -- Forum Administrator ---> 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!

  11. #11
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    Run your # again

    If you indeed have an R 69S with matching # rough condition its about a $3,500- $5,000 bike (depending on how rough). Non matching and all the stuff described I would shell out around $1,500 to $2,200 depending on a close inspection to determine a parts donner or a resto project.

    A nice restoration will cost about $7,500 for drive train & wheels, $4,500 paint and stripe and another $1,500 - $3,000 for incidentals such as your speedo, wire harness, fasteners and other items that you find are junk. I f you do most of the work yourself the costs come down.

    Bristol Grey '65 R 69S
    Dover White '69 R 60US
    Black '55 R 50
    Dover White over Black '62 R 50S
    and an assortment of new suff

  12. #12
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    How do I determine the numbers matching?

  13. #13
    Cannonball Rider #52 darrylri's Avatar
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    The engine number is stamped on the right side, just above the pushrod tubes. The frame number is stamped on the right side of the steering head. For the trifecta, the badge that is screwed to the front of the steering head shows the frame number. All three numbers should be the same.
    --Darryl Richman, forum liaison
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  14. #14
    Registered User bensonhurst's Avatar
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    dreaming

    If any body thinks they can find a running R69S for $3500 dollars, think again, even, incomplete, frozen, basket cases are going for more than that.

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    Last edited by Bensonhurst; 03-19-2010 at 09:38 PM.
    C.O.B.
    63 years old, and I still don't know what I want to be when I grow up.

  15. #15
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    Why did that bike sell for $ 6,500.00? Seems in awful condition.

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