My present and previous Bikes
R100 GSPD and R80
The engines of two cylinder BMW's are called "horizontally opposed twins", the layout of this design has the advantage that bikes of this design have a far lower centre of gravity than traditional standing twins, this makes this model BMW a very stable and easy to handle motorcycle.
This is how is works.
My two BMW's
These are my two current BMW's, above a 1000cc twin, a "PD", for those not too familiar with BMW models, R stands for the opposed two cylinder engine , as shown above, 100 stands for 1000 cc, GS means (Gelande Strasse) in German or "Off Road " and PD for Paris-Dakar. These bikes looks somewhat like the original PD's used in the annual Paris-Dakar race. It's appearance is dominated by the massive 35 ltr fuel tank.
Modifications: low muffler to allow large Zega boxes. Specialy designed HD rack to take cases and gearsack bag, on board air compressor mounted underneath the airfilter, the hose which is kept inside the frame fit neatly folded inside the frametube under the tank. Camel bags and tank bag, aliminium bracket to hold tent mounted on the front of the crashbar above the headlight. GPS fittes on the handlebars. A Wudo larger screen and a few waterbottle holders so we can have a drink whilst riding.
BMW R80 "Sp"
The R80 is an 800 cc twin, I call it a "SP" for "Special" as I modified the bike extensively to make it suitable for a long distance trip from Southern India to Western Europe undertaken during 1997. I used the 1000 cc engine for the trip.The length of the trip was approx. 20.000 km and took 3 months to complete. The photograph on the left was taken at a truckstop in India, the picture on the right in the citadel of Bam in Iran.
The photo below was taken in Eastern Turkey besides Mount Ararat, with a temperature of about minus 7 degrees C. We found a snow free spot beside the road, only to get bogged instantly as the snow free area was caused by warm underground thermal activity making the clay soil as soft as dough. It took about an hour to free the two bikes and remove the clay from under the mudguards.
After riding mopeds for two years my first real motorcycle was a BMW R67/2, a 600 cc item with a sidecar, it had about 200.000km on the clock and provided me with a fantastic opportunity to learn about the mechanics of this type of bike, spare parts were always easy to find. One day a valve went right through the piston, I happened to be behind the Iron Curtain where no BMW's were sold....never mind ,the next day I continued with a Peugeot piston and a Mercedes valve and valve seat.!
Over the years I have owned a R60/2, R60,R26, R69S, R75/5, R80RT, K1100LTSE, R100RT Classic and presently the two bikes, pictured above
Previous bikes I owned
(To sett the scene, I was born and raised in Holland and left for Australia when I turned 20)
At an early age I was influenced by the riding activities of my father, he bought his first motorcycle (moped) when he was around 55; During the early 60's, the moped era had arrived in Western Europe, young an old could make a choice from a variety of makes and models, they were made in just about every country in Europe. My father purchased a 50 cc, 60km/h Austrian made HMW, a spartan type of bike as it lacked rear suspension, it was soon replaced by a
HMW deluxe 1956
"Deluxe" model which supported rear shock absorbers. Later he switched to a Zundapp and rode moped until he passed away at age 81.
Meanwhile I had turned 16 and bought the German manufactured Kreidler Florett below. A chrome cylinder made these bikes indestructable, the Dutch laws allowed these bikes to be ridden without a licence providing the are under 50 cc (they were all 49.9 cc) and about 2 hp. German tourist were often seen with 5 hp models which would reach a topspeed of 80-90 km/h. On the international racing circuit the racing models pumped out 17 hp at 14000 rpm (an amazing 340 hp per ltr) through 12 speed gearbox.
1966-1968 Kreidler Florett 50 cc
Soon I turned 17 and 9 months, my first BMW had arrived, over 200.000km old, sidecar included, fun and games in the snow. read about it
1952 model BMW R67/2 600 cc,
Heinkel 175 cc single cylinder
It was 1968, Sorry- but it was very cold that winter , full face helmets only just hit the market and were out of reach of most people my age, The Heinkel could be driven with a motorcycle licence.
In October 1969 I migrated to Australia,
The R 60 below was my first BMW in Aus.
For 5 years I was a Honda motor cycle dealer and rode dozens of different models, some of them became a toy for a while like this TL 125.
however I still had a BMW parked in the workshop or at home.
BMW R60 with four mufflers
It is now 1975, during a holiday in Holland I bought this R75/5. At that time I had a plan to ride it back to Australia and even bought a 42 liter tank for it, due to political problems en route this plan could not be realised, we rode the bike to Turkey and back to Holland after which it was shipped to Perth in Western Australia and we rode the remaining 4000 km home to Melbourne
In 1978, after my first daughter was born I lost interest for a while, I sold the bike only to buy the Honda below. A lot of fun with this one!
Honda XL 500 S
In 1984 I made a second attempt to ride overland to Europe, the bike (below) went to Sri Lanka but due to unforseen circumstances I had to cancell the trip. The motorcycle selected for this trip was the first of the Yamaha XT600 Tenere series, they were the ideal bike at that time as they where fitted with a 30 liter tank and returned up to 19 km per litre. Most of the km I rode with my friend Stuart Tubb who was riding an identical bike.
YAMAHA XT 600 E
It's 1985, I ordered a brand new R80RT ex factory and picked it up in Germany, I rode the bike for 10 years doing 185.000 km without any major problems, a friend owns the bike now, in 1998 it had 235.000 km on the clock, it is still going strong. who knows what is has done by now. Many of these km I rode with my mate Mal Cadioli, often doing upto 1200 km day trips like Brisbane -Canberra or Brisbane -Townsville or just riding west as far as we would get in a day, with Mal I had my best riding days.
BMW R 80 RT
Meanwhile had I bought a white BMW R60/2 as a basket case and restored it to the condition below, working on it most nights and nearly every weekend it took me only 3 months to complete it, I rode it around for a few years and sold it.
In 1995 I thought I needed a change and after selling the R80RT bought the BMW flagship of the day, the K1100LTSE. 4 cylinders, fuel injected, metronic engine management, on board radio, remote controlled windscreen etc.; after 22000 (very comfortable) kilometers I felt that the heavy weight 4 cylinder was not for me.
BMW K1100 LTSE
and traded the bike for one of the very last of the old boxer twins the R100RTClassic.
BMW R100RT Classic
After two attempts to do an Asia overland journey I decided to give it another go and bought a another bike,due to the high cost of the "carnet de passage" which is needed for India (400 % of the bike's value to be paid as a security deposit) the R100GSPD was not an option due to the high value so I bought an R80 which I modified extensively to suit a long haul from India to Europe. I realised the journey in 1997 and return home to Brisbane after about 20.000 km.
At my return I replaced the 1000cc engine and the gearbox back into my other bike and put the 800 cc engine back into the frame. It is now in Europe where I have undertaken trips from Holland to Marocco and the following year a trip to Syria.
BMW R100 GSPD