BMW R80RT / 25 thousand miles or 125 thousand miles

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BMW R80RT / 25 thousand miles or 125 thousand miles

Postby Paul Lange » Thu Jul 10, 2003 8:49 pm

I recently purchased a very nice 1983 R80RT. It is the smoothest ride that I have ever rode, and very predictable. I purchased the machine from a local Dallas used bike dealer who sold the bike as having 25,000 miles on it. I thought it was quite a bike and exceptionally clean for the year, and it is very clean. However I am starting to wonder if the 25 thousand miles is rather 125 thousand miles. :shock:

The machine and frame is spotless. She runs very fine. I am very surprised with this machine. The fairing is near perfect with the paint faded. I have no worries about the machine on a local level if the miles are 25k. If this RT has 25k I made a decent buy. If it indeed has 125K I feel that I have been misled and wonder about the longevity of my purchase and riding pleasure. I may or may have not made a "decent" buy. :roll:

My question or concern is simply this: How many miles can these machines of legend pile up before I hear pings and knocks and see the smoke? What is really considered "high" mileage on this machine? :?

Thanks for your response

Paul H Lange
prsails@charter.net
1983 R80RT
New AirHead Rider
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Postby Ted » Fri Jul 11, 2003 10:41 am

I've seen several R bikes with 300,000+ miles, and more than I could count with 200,000+ miles. I think with proper maintenance and a few unscheduled repairs (driveshaft & exhaust pipes?) you should easily get as many miles out of the bike as you you could possibly ride. Have you discovered the Airheads site yet?

BTW - I've heard among Airhead riders that the R80 is one of the finest engines BMW has built.

Congrats on the purchase!
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1983 R80RT Paul Lange

Postby Guest » Fri Jul 11, 2003 8:09 pm

Ted wrote:I've seen several R bikes with 300,000+ miles, and more than I could count with 200,000+ miles. I think with proper maintenance and a few unscheduled repairs (driveshaft & exhaust pipes?) you should easily get as many miles out of the bike as you you could possibly ride. Have you discovered the Airheads site yet?

BTW - I've heard among Airhead riders that the R80 is one of the finest engines BMW has built.

Congrats on the purchase!


Ted, thanks for your response and data relating to the R80RT performance. I also beleive with a little more confidence that I can acheive similar mileage records for this series machine. I have contacted other owners of this series bike since yesterday including a BMW shop that told me almost verbatim same info. I feel better and am ready for a long term realtionship with this bike. (some machines fair well with me including two volvo sedans that I sold with over 300K on them at time of sale...even though I informed the new owners that the odometer had not been rolling miles for a year or so one the first one)

Thanks again,

Paul Lange
prsails@charter.net
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My RT

Postby Porky » Sun Aug 31, 2003 2:39 pm

:lol: I own a 1984 BMW R80RT with 30,000 original miles! What a bike. I am put off by the new oilheads and their seemingly endless problems. Recently, I was going to buy a 2003 R1150RT but didn't like the surging problem mainly and didn't look forward to transmission and clutch problems at 40-50 thousand miles. Apparently, splines are soft as are gears and seals are leaking etc, etc. What happened to legendary BMW quality? I know that yours has 500,000 trouble free miles, but what about all of these reported problems on relatively new bikes. Today I read about all the trouble with hesitating and stumbling the new 2004 Dual pluggers are having. Lets see, BMW got rid of the surging for us and gave us--hesitation, dying and stumbling! What was once a nuisance is now a MAJOR safety issue---as in stalling out in an intersection or when merging into traffic. A good set of dialed in carbs will last forever and run good all the time, with minimum maintenance, unlike BMW's fuel injection efforts. I have had four bikes in the last two years with fuel injection and every one of them has ran absolutely perfect. I guess the Japanese can do something that BMW can't??? My new Honda 1800 VTX 1800 Retro runs perfectly, as does my friends new Goldwing, both fuel injected. I think there will soon be a big market for older, carburated R bikes in the near future. It's a shame BMW can't get things right! I love the product but when a person pays a premium to have the "best," they should get a good, trouble free product, in my opinion. My friends 2001 LT just got out of the shop, where it was 60 days getting a rear main oil leak fixed under warranty. Less than 20,000 miles and in the shop for a bad rear main seal! An isolated problem---Hardly, the shop was full of new LT's getting their leaks fixed. Mucho expensive!! Wake up BMW, no wonder your market share is so small! :cry:
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Postby censor46 » Mon Sep 01, 2003 2:36 pm

Porky,
I own a 2003 R 1150RT, and am really concerned about your apparent displeasure with Oilheads. Please give me the source of your information. Although I am skeptical because my oilhead seems to run fine. I am very interested to research your information for myself. I bought a BMW because I had been told about thier reliability.

censor46@hotmail.com
R1150RT
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Postby Porky » Mon Sep 01, 2003 9:10 pm

Here are a few sites you can go to that will help you see what put me off enough to consider not buying a new oil head until some of these problems are sorted out. I'm sure that not all BMW's sold have these problems and in reality, most people that have trouble free bikes don't tend to post to these forums. In other words, we only see problems, for the most part on sites like this one and others, not the praise for the trouble free bikes. Anyway, BMW's have always had excellent warranties, so I wouldn't worry about anything. Besides the sites below, there are many other BMW/reliability links available. :lol: Take care, sam

www.bmwsporttouring.com
www.bmwrt.com
www.micapeak.com/bmw/gs
www.krakar.co.uk/rrs/faq.htm
www.forums.delphiforums.com/mctourer

Gear and transmission recall www.lcbiker.com/safety/recall.htm
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Back to the original topic...

Postby Anton » Thu Sep 18, 2003 8:48 am

If the bike has 125k on it, there's no problem but you do want to know if you're due for some 100,000-mile maintenance. Probably none of this is an issue, but let's say for argument's sake that it is 125,000 and no major work has ever been done.

Do a compression test, warm, and check the values against a service manual. If they're at the lowest acceptable limit, the engine probably has 125k and could use new rings and a valve job.

At that point you may want to change the timing chain and check the clearance between the pistons and cylinders. The lower end (crank and conrod bearings) should be fine; the crank bearings generally only go if there has been a lubrication problem and you would be able to feel for play in the conrods when the cylinders come off.

Then you put it back together and ride it for another 100,000 miles, checking valve clearances regularly.
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