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Thread: 1994 r1100rs

  1. #1
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    Question 1994 r1100rs

    I want any and all serious opinions/experiences/problems with this motorcycle!!

    I am thinking of purchasin a 1994 R1100RS that has 40K miles.

    Looks extremely clean.

    Do any of you have any information of the negatives or positives of this particular model?

    Any problems to look for?

    What is a fair price if everything is OK? (i.e. very good shape)?

    Thanks in advance!

  2. #2
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    Jim: There are a couple of potential problems with 1100 Oilheads, like Hall sensor, surging behavior and the pucks for the front floating rotors, but I would think with 40K miles, you should be O.K.
    You know, it isn't a particularly comfortable bike...or are you buying it for Zack???

  3. #3
    Macrunch MCrenshaw's Avatar
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    As on any bike almost 20 years old, check the service records available. Rubber and plastic bits are usually the first to go. Original brake lines should be replaced sooner than later. How about brake fluid? What does it look like? Shocks will probably need to be replaced at that mileage and if you go with the popular rebuildable units expect to pay big bucks. I'm 6'1" with a 32 inch inseam and I can't stand to sit on the R1100RS for any length of time. Peg lowering kits are probably still available. I installed a set on my R1100S and it move the pegs down about 1.5" and back just a skosh. That made all the difference for me and I can now ride the S all day long.

    One thing I've done before when buying a car is to make an appointment with a dealer or reputable mechanic to do an inspection. I would pay for the inspection and buy the seller breakfast (or lunch). If it turns out well then it's money well spent. If it turns out bad, then it's still money well spent and you won't have to worry about making lemonade out of a lemon.

    Good luck to you.

  4. #4
    GEEZER lsouth3's Avatar
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    Good advice on the previous replies.
    These early RS bikes came with tranny bearings that relied upon the transmission oil for lubrication. If they are still in there they will likely fail. I replaced one transmission after 70K and one of my bikes had the replacement under warranty at 28K miles. The later RS bikes came with sealed bearings.
    If you start the bike in neutral and let out the clutch lever you will be able to tell by listening if there is bearing damage. If you hear no bearing noise at 40K the bearings have probably been replaced with sealed bearings or the entire transmission may have been replaced with an upgraded one. For sure it's worth discussing with the seller. I found my replacement tranny for $500 on imbwr.org a few years ago. It was removed from a 96 RT and had to be painted silver. Great swap though.
    The original shocks are probably toast by now but they too may have been upgraded.
    For me the forward riding position is ideal though it may take some time to get used to it. The seat and bars and windscreen are all adjustable and that is a plus on this model.
    I see 94's advertised for sale from 2800 to 4800. Can't say what is fair but a used bike is an unknown anyway. I think a good used 94 RS may be worth upwards of four thousand.
    Hope this helps. Good luck!
    Lee - The older I get the better I was
    1994 R1100RSL, Black. 1994 R1100RSL, Silver Pearl and a "new" 2001 R1100RS, Red!
    Treat all others with politeness. Not because they are nice but because you are.

  5. #5
    Benchwrenching PGlaves's Avatar
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    Voni's only has 360,000 miles on it so she is riding it for our summer travels this year. We left her F800S and K75S at home.

    The 1994 R1100RS is one of the few best motorycles BMW ever made.
    Paul Glaves - "Big Bend", Texas U.S.A
    "The greatest challenge to any thinker is stating the problem in a way that will allow a solution." - Bertrand Russell
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  6. #6
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    +1 on the transmission issue. Mine failed around 20,000 miles and I understand that most of them from '94 do. But it's a great bike and I'm sorry I sold mine.
    Bill Mayer
    MOA #98888
    R1200RT

  7. #7
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    I miss mine.

    But I also had the transmission rebuilt once. (can't remember exact mileage that was done)

  8. #8
    Minnesota Nice! braddog's Avatar
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    I've only had mine since last September, so I really haven't put enough miles on it for my opinion to have much weight. But, I will say this. I do like this motorcycle a lot. As much as I truly love my '77 R100RS, the improvements on the '94 R1100RS are very noticeable and enjoyable. I bought mine with 79K on it, but knew the maintenance history of it. It had always been maintained by the same gentleman that works on my airheads. We slapped on new tires (Michelin PR2's), gave it a full 12K maintenance, and away I went.

    I can't imagine how I'd feel on an even MORE modern motorcycle, i.e. one that wasn't already 19 years old.

    OK, I'll just hang up and listen now.
    -----------------------------------------
    Brad D. - Member #105766
    '77 R100RS - Black Beauty (big pipe, baby!)
    '94 R1100RS - Sylvia

  9. #9
    Benchwrenching PGlaves's Avatar
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    I'll add to my earlier comments:

    The '94 models with no cat code plug seldom surge and if they do it is obviously a tuning issue. They leaned out the later years a little more. The transmission input shaft splines ought to be lubed every so often. I like 40K mile intervals - 50K might not kill it. Rear brake pads wear quicker than on many other models. Check them fairly frequently. Driveshaft universal joints need to be checked at 100K or so. Voni's went 202,000 but you can't count on that. Almost all the original transmissions in the '94 models have been replaced or repaired. Voni's bike got one under warranty. The second one lasted over 300K miles before I had Tom Cutter go through it. The wheels are a bit soft. We run 40 psi in the front and 42 in the rear. The OEM recommendation for the front risked the front wheel in pothole country.
    Last edited by PGlaves; 06-06-2013 at 08:27 PM.
    Paul Glaves - "Big Bend", Texas U.S.A
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  10. #10
    badge502
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    Ive had a couple of them, and had a transmission replacement under warranty on one when it had about 20K on it. The bike did many 1000 mile days... I never had a surging issue, or maybe I did, just didnt notice it. I took it to a Reg Pridmore Class once, and it did great there, rode it from Denver to San Antonio in a day, then back the next. It did it all, and it did it really good too.

    Hope you find one that works out for you! They are awesome bikes.

  11. #11
    Jammess jammess's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JIMMYLEE View Post
    I want any and all serious opinions/experiences/problems with this motorcycle!!

    I am thinking of purchasin a 1994 R1100RS that has 40K miles.

    Looks extremely clean.

    Do any of you have any information of the negatives or positives of this particular model?

    Any problems to look for?

    What is a fair price if everything is OK? (i.e. very good shape)?

    Thanks in advance!
    Hi Jim,
    I bought my '94 R1100RSL one year ago last February and at the time it was virtually brand new with one actual mile on the odometer, believe it or not. I had to immediately replace the fuel pump with filter as well as flush the brakes (and re-flush the brakes) and change all other fluids. I even did a trans input shaft spline lube before firing it up for the first time. It ran great but with a bit of surge which I took care of by cutting the code plug jumper, disconnecting the O2 sensor, and installing a CO potentiometer. Now, the bike has 1800 original miles and is absolutely the best motorcycle I have ever owned. I also own a 1981 R100RT as well as a 2004 R1150RT. If I could only have one mc it would be the '94RSL without a doubt. I just haven't had much chance to ride the past year but plan to change that.
    Jammess

  12. #12
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    My 94RS has been the best overall bike I have owned, and is still my main ride. BMW warrantied the original tranny at 68k and gave me a brand new 96 spec tranny. My early 94 never had a CAT code plug at all and never surged. Though it "only" has little more than 1/2 the miles of Voni Glaves 94 RS, it is approaching 175,000 trouble free miles, still on the original final drive, fuel system, alternator, rebuilt TBs, replaced the driveshaft, but no internal engine work. I too run 40psi frt/42psi rear and Wisconsin roads are anything but smooth, and the original rims are fine and true.

  13. #13
    sMiling Voni's Avatar
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    BIG RED is my all time favorite bike. More than a third of my million miles were on that bike. Heck, over half of my million were on BIG RED and my R11RSL. Around 200,000 miles Paul told me to think about another bike, so I bought one just like Big Red only with RED bags and RED lowers. I rode that one over 175,000 miles and sold it to a friend when BIG RED kept on keeping on.

    BMW did replace the transmission twice in the first 100K - at no cost to me, and it ran trouble free until 166K.

    Oh, the adventures we've had! She's my main ride this summer. See you in Salem!

    Voni
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  14. #14
    aapasquale
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    Bought my 1994 R1100RS 1 1/2 years ago with 26,000 miles for $3,500--Have made changes and have done some repairs--a great bike--very good riding--put bar-backs on this winter and has made a big difference with long distance comfort--bike 16 months later has 42,000 miles--Tony

  15. #15
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    R1100rs

    All other things being equal, I say GO FOR IT!!! I have owned 2 94's at different times in the past 18 years and they have been ALL THAT. While the transmission may be an issue, find one from a wreck (think Beemer Boneyard) and have it rebuilt, put it in and keep the other one for a spare. My R1100RS story that says it all is that every year on my birthday weekend, I get to do whatever I want and not unexpectedly I opted for a weekend motorcycle trip. I gave my wife the option of Cape May, New Jersey or Montreal-(we live in Scranton, PA and each destination is approximately 400 miles away. My wife chose Montreal and we left Scranton @ 12:30 on Saturday afternoon. 2 fuel stops-one to include a meal and at 18:30 we were comming into Montreal. 400 Miles in 6 hours, 2 up with 2 stops is why the machine was referred to by one magazine at the time as the "Mile Burner".

    For what it's worth the bike fits my definition of German Speed:

    Japaneese speed-How fast can I get from 0-150 mph?
    American speed-How fast can I turn this horsepower into noise?
    German speed-How fast can I get from Boston to Kansas City?

    IMHO one of the best long distance/high speed bikes ever.

    Regards,

    Will

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