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Thread: Which Airhead?

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  1. #1
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    Which Airhead?

    I've owned an oilhead for the last 8 years but nostagia and my son's new interest in riding has Me pondering an Airhead. Any suggestions/+ or- would be appreciated. Thanks

  2. #2
    Registered User lkchris's Avatar
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    As new an R100RT or R100RS or R100GS as you can find.

    Not for sure anything older than 1981, as time has moved on and these bikes are firmly in the "quaint" and "difficult" category these days. No longer representative of the 21st century BMW and mostly becoming embarassments.
    Kent Christensen
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    '12 R1200RT, '02 R1100S, '84 R80G/S

  3. #3
    Administrator 20774's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lkchris View Post
    and mostly becoming embarassments.
    In your humble opinion! No real reason to step on those that have come before us. In my humble opinion!
    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!

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    Certainly nothing embarrassing about a pre-81 air head. I assume the concern is with conventional points ignition, which does require more attention than electronic set up. But that's part of the fun and nostalgia of an older bike. I have owned a 1977 r100rs since 1982. The riding position takes some getting used to and probably won't be right for long-distant, marathon cruising (though some would disagree). I love the r90s also. Really depends and how nostalgic you want to be and what type of riding you are planning. The rt series will put you more upright with a bigger fairing. In any event, any well cared for air head will give years and tens of thousands of miles of reliable service/fun. So pick a bike you like and go for it!

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    Administrator 20774's Avatar
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    There is no right answer to this, and they're are many opinions...as we've seen and will see. I'll list some information that I've saved from knowledge Airhead people as to their choices for best and worst years. These would be their opinions...I won't go into rationale...in some cases I don't have their rationale.

    From Tom Cutter - likes these models and he would choose these in order of preference:

    1) 1976 R75/6
    2) 1979 R100S or R100T
    3) 1977 R100RS
    4) 1994 R100M Mystic

    From Oak:

    Oak says best years were 1976, 1979, 1980, 1983, 1984, and 1990 onward.

    He says to avoid 1970, 1974, 1981. Models 1984 thru 1994 have the circlip problem in the transmission – it’s missing.

    From Snowbum: here's the link to descriptions of various models. Embedded in this will be his thoughts for pros/cons:

    http://bmwmotorcycletech.info/models.htm
    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!

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    Greatly appreciate the feedback. I seem to come accross R65's being put up for sale with some frequency, Any particular opions about this model?

  7. #7
    Registered User robertklee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lkchris View Post
    As new an R100RT or R100RS or R100GS as you can find.

    Not for sure anything older than 1981, as time has moved on and these bikes are firmly in the "quaint" and "difficult" category these days. No longer representative of the 21st century BMW and mostly becoming embarassments.
    You've got to be joking. I just got off my '73 60/5 that I've owned for 25 years. What's embarrassing about it? It's one of the finest motorcycles ever produced. To be frank, I could buy a new motorcycle but I just dont like all that crap; you know- fuel injection, electronic ignition, electronic gas gauge, tubeless tires...the list goes on and on. Personally I prefer points and kick starters. Never have any trouble with it and it keeps on ticking. I mean, really...and by the way-I'm quaint and difficult and I do okay.

    RKL
    "Leave the gun. Take the cannoli."

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    Quote Originally Posted by lkchris View Post
    No longer representative of the 21st century BMW and mostly becoming embarassments.
    I've had my R75/6 for 32 years, and never been embarassed. Nor has it ever made me walk.
    Howard Edwards

    2014 Road King; 1975 R75/6

  9. #9
    michaelc
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    1970s BMW:


    21st Century BMW:


    I know which era I'd rather be associated with.

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    Mars needs women! 35634's Avatar
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    Hey, think outside the roundel. How about a Ural Solo? Modern alternator and ignition, electric and kick start, 2-year warranty, disc brakes, simple maintenance, spokes, tubes, BMW heritage, all for about $8k and all brand new, no previous owner dubious maintenance to worry about. Not to mention you can add a sidecar. The new ones have addressed many of the problems they had, and mine has been utterly reliable, probably much more than a 30-yr-old beemer. Just a thought.......
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    Last edited by 35634; 09-21-2012 at 12:46 AM.
    1987 K75S
    Original litter
    Original owner
    2012 Ural Gear Up

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    Registered User PeoriaMac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lkchris View Post
    No longer representative of the 21st century BMW and mostly becoming embarassments.
    There are times I think Kent does this just to troll for comments.....

    Mac
    Mac
    1986 R80RT, 2005 R1200GS
    Livin' Large On The Lake

  12. #12
    advrider.com
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    I have 5 old airheads. I'm too embarrassed to even show my face any more!

  13. #13
    Registered User 88bmwjeff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by crazydrummerdude View Post
    I have 5 old airheads. I'm too embarrassed to even show my face any more!
    What's to be embarrassed about. Hell I'm jealous.
    Jeff in W.C.
    1988 R100 RT (the other woman)
    "I got my motorcycle jacket but I'm walking all the time." Joe Strummer

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    Registered User toooldtocare's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by crazydrummerdude View Post
    I have 5 old airheads. I'm too embarrassed to even show my face any more!
    I don't have any right now, but I am looking!

  15. #15
    Registered User lmo1131's Avatar
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    And I've only had one airhead ... for thirty-nine years. Still seems to get the job done, drum brakes and all.

    "It is what you discover, after you know it all, that counts." _ John Wooden

    Lew Morris
    1973 R75/5 - original owner

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