Marusho Steib ?
Thank you. I try
Originally Posted by s09rwmb
Your summary is spot on. I was warned NOT to try it, but I had only one chance to put the purchase and trip together and so I did it.
All the warnings rang true when three minutes into my very first ride, I turned right and the rig went left. But I found a parking lot, practiced basic turns and within the next hour was climbing the impossibly steep and twisty hills around San Jose, CA - Rt 130. For me it was either the impossible hills or certain death on the highway. I took the hills.
...I made it home.
At the risk of taking this thread seriously off original tracks... I just received an answer to some questions I had for the original builder. ...the bike has an R75 short block, with R90/6 barrels, new pistons, balanced rods, rebuilt valvetrain, etc. The transmission is from an unknown bike (5-sp with kickstart), but rebuilt by Ozzie's BMW.
Originally Posted by s09rwmb
It would take some time to make the complete list of all the mods. It came across as one very serious conversion - which is one of the reasons I bought it sight unseen. It also appeared to have been under good care in the hands of the person who bought the bike from the builder. That assumption was largely a miss. The bike was not abused, but marginally maintained. ...my periodic posts will address all the things I am discovering.
When I left CA, the rear tire only had 3mm of tread. By Nebraska it was a gonner. Fortunately the Anonymous book works and I got the bike serviced (tire change). The shop owner graciously allowed me to change all the fluids. This is where I discovered that the rebuilt trans was producing more chips and sludge than I like to see ...and that the trans oil had not been changed often enough.
I’ll mention the leaking DS boot only in passing. The next serious repair came in Ohio, where the front brake pads became too thin for my comfort. Again the Annon book gave me a shop lead and the pads were replaced, along with a very dirty brake fluid.
The third breakdown - only 160 miles from home was unfixable - one front wheel bearing disintegrated (Friday, 4:30 PM). I told the towtruck driver to let me off a few blocks from home and rode in under my own power.
I keep thinking I will do a full writeup. ...and one day I will.
Sidecar: Very interesting story, but as of yet just that. It was originally attached to a Marusho, on Guam, where a serviceman who saw it parked under a palm convinced the local chief (who's "limo ride" it had been) to sell it, shipped it to the States, where it eventually ended up in the props department of Paramount Studios (apparently used in some Pearl Harbor - themed movie), and eventually sold to a BMW collector. That's how it entered the /2 conversion stream.
The hack itself is a RHD model (now sitting on a largely custom built frame …of extremely high quality); the passenger entry cutout is on the left side of the tub. More interestingly, though as yet unconfirmed: the sidecar is said to be a Steib TR500 copy, manufactured by Marusho. The only evidence to that is the footstep which has a large “M” embossed, where an “S” would be on a Steib (or so I am told). Also, the shape of the fender is a bit different (it is lacking the wonderful Art Deco backward sweep of the Steib).
Furthermore, and stranger yet (if measurably true), the size of the tub is said to be smaller than the original …scaled down to fit a smaller adult. This is theoreticaly conceivable, considering it would have been originally made for the Asian market in the 1950s or 60s. I haven’t measured the hack, nor do I have a confirmed Steib TR500 to compare this to, but, when my 4 year old son gets in, he pretty much fills the seat (and he is a lean kid).
And so, now you know one of the main reasons I went hack: I wanted to have a way to take my small children on rides with me. My son loves it; his sister will be able to join him in a few more years.
I was promised more info on whatever history exists on this Marusho/Steib chair. I’ll post it as I receive it.
1960 /2 +R90/6 Conversion Rig