It’s been quite a while since we’ve had a nice classic R100RS to offer as a PROJECT BIKE. This one has fairly LOW MILES for its age and, in our opinion, represents a great VALUE to someone willing to invest a little sweat equity. This bike has had three or possibly four owners, and there is no known history of a crash, abuse or neglect. The only serious cosmetic issue is a dent in the tank on the right side which we were informed was the result of a ladder falling on it in the garage. Most of its mechanical issues are simply because the bike sat idle for an extended period. To someone versed in Airhead maintenance, they are not complicated challenges, nor even particularly expensive things to fix.
As with all PROJECT BIKES we want buyers to know as much as possible about it before making a purchase. We’ve nothing to hide and our only goal is that the new owner for each and every PROJECT BIKE feels they paid fairly and got a good, if not great value in the deal. We encourage people to call, schedule a time to meet with one of our sales advisors and inspect each machine in person so they fully understand all the positives as well as the potential downsides involved in the refurbishing process. We’re proud to have sold well over a hundred PROJECT BIKES since beginning the program some years ago. Our aim with these bikes — indeed, with all the bikes we sell — is exceptional customer satisfaction. By that measure, our PROJECT BIKES have proven to be an overwhelming success. We’ve even taken a few of them back in trade as good used bikes after their owners finished doing all the work and then enjoyed riding the bikes for a number of years.
Please take a moment to learn more about Bob’s PROJECT BIKE program and read our general disclaimer here: http://www.bobsbmw.com/new-motorcycles/project-bikes/.
Here are some facts to help you decide if this is the PROJECT BIKE for you:
- It arrived without a live battery and that’s how it’s being offered up. It’s mildly dirty from roughly 15 years of dry storage. It has some obvious low level oil weepage around the base of the engine, fork seals, and less but still noticeable by the rear main seal. We’d suggest a top end and oil pan re-seal as we’re guessing it’s never been done based on miles and ownership history. Going beyond that might not be needed and we’d suggest doing the obvious stuff and getting it running before doing things that may not be necessary at first.
- The gas tank is dry, clean and without any signs of rust, and the Bing 40 mm carbs are surprisingly clean and dry, but will probably benefit from a rebuild just based on the number of idle years.
- The motor turns over easily (rear wheel method in 5th gear) and the transmission goes into all gears without difficulty. The final drive rotates smoothly.
- While we did not connect a battery to check switches, lights and horn, all the switches move smoothly and we’d anticipate that once running all would work fine. The trip odometer resets easily and we do not suspect the miles showing are anything but correct and have a signed Federal odometer statement to that effect.
- The tires are older Metzeler brand and should be replaced in the interest of your riding safety. If, however, one desires to leave that for later, they have plenty of tread (F:75% & R:50%) and good sidewall condition; these tires would pass the Maryland Safety Inspection, so riding a few miles nearby at lower speeds (your own neighborhood for example) on your initial test rides will probably be OK.
- The rear disc measured below factory minimum thickness of 4.5mm (4.15-4.4) and should be replaced; the pads are of course old and should be replaced at the same time. Both front discs measured over factory minimum specs of 4.5mm (L 4.59-4.75 & R 4.77-4.86) and should have lots of remaining life. But as with the rear, we strongly suggest new pads and a full bleeding of the system. Action on both brake master cylinders is OK but we’d suggest inspecting both along with brake hoses — before and after bleeding — for optimum function and safety.
- The previous owner shared with us that, on occasion, he had had a charging problem, and that before parking it around 2004, had installed a new rotor, voltage regulator and diode board. These did not fix the issue from happening now and then, however, especially in hot weather or after longish rides. His research suggested that upgrading the grounding wire on the diode board was needed. As this was a common problem with Airhead electrics of this period, we would agree with his assessment. (And while you have the front cover off, replacing the brushes might be in order too.)
And now for some words on the extras along with notes on the overall cosmetic condition of this PROJECT BIKE:
- Paint is generally good shape with no signs of tip-overs or crashes. Its color is the very popular Polaris Graphite Metallic, or as it was often commonly called, “Grey Smoke.” There are assorted small and minor scratches and blemishes, typical of a bike of its age, which would be best identified during a personal inspection. Yes, there is the quite noticeable dent from the falling ladder mentioned earlier. Overall, though, this motorcycle will likely shine well after a good bath and full detail.
- The wheels appear to be true and without dents, dings or scratches from past tire changes; they mostly are in need of a very good cleaning like everything else. Based on age and miles, we’d suggest a wheel bearing service with fresh seals would be a smart investment in the next 30,000 miles of safe service for the future of this PROJECT BIKE.
- The exhaust system is in solid condition with no noticeable rust through or telltale bulges on the mufflers which appear to be OEM BMW components; the headers have a little bit of light surface rust from the years of dry storage and may polish up decently but these are certainly functional for some time based on our observations and experience.
- It has a vented BMW front fairing lower panel that was not original to the bike but was acquired later and also has the standard opening for the original BMW oil cooler which is still in place; these are far better than the unvented original front covers.
- It has original tank emblems and side cover decals and dash stickers, a tinted stock height windscreen, San Jose fork brace, Koni 7610P-1298 rear shocks and, supposedly, Progressive Suspension fork springs, but as we can’t see these we can’t be 100% sure. It also comes with BMW braced saddlebag mounts and the BMW touring cases with side reflector and BMW logotype badge. There are no keys for these older small key saddlebag locks included with this PROJECT BIKE. While not visible, one should note that the back of the left bag has some extensive and interesting repairs to the body not easily seen when mounted and, while far from pretty, the bag is still fully functional. There is also a lock hasp added before the last owner got this bike and there are a few of the common small cracks around the locks as the factory did not drill the rivet holes large enough.
- The stock passenger grab rail is intact on what was considered the comfort dual seat in 1984. The underside of the seat (the seat pan) is in good condition and the foam feels like it has tons of comfortable life in it still. The tool tray is included but no tool kit or manuals are included with the sale. The bike does come with four keys (two flat & two folding) all of which fit the ignition, fork lock, seat lock, and gas cap.
- This bike no longer has the original flat “RS” handlebar. As was common practice in the day, it was replaced with the slightly more relaxed R90S/R100S handlebar which, in order to fit within the RS fairing’s confines, was probably trimmed by about ½ to ¾ of an inch before installation. (Bob happens to be a big fan of this smart ergonomic upgrade.)
To repeat some of what we’ve mentioned above on this PROJECT BIKE, one should plan on buying a new battery, new tires and tubes, replacing all the fluids, resealing the top-end and oil pan, servicing the brakes and forks (seals, springs and all that tiny stuff that gives them their dampening action), replacing the rear disc, all brake pads, and a full servicing of the carbs; anything electrical is purely speculation until the bike is up and running, and we sincerely hope that all the new owner will need to do is add the upgrade diode board ground wire and clean and lubricate the control switches. All in all, it’s not really too much work needed to have a very desirable, classic, 35-years-young R100RS to ride. And as for the appearance? Well, aside from the unfortunate dent in the tank, the bike is actually not in bad shape. Remember, the dent takes nothing away from the performance or FUN of riding the bike. (And using a tank bag will make it practically disappear!)
Call the sales Team at Bob’s BMW, make an appointment and make time to inspect this fine PROJECT BIKE before another Beemer Airhead enthusiast beats you to it!