Go Back   Horizons Unlimited - The HUBB > Technical, Bike forums > BMW Tech

BMW Tech BMW Tech Forum - For Questions specific and of interest to BMW riders only. Questions comparing which bike is best etc go in the "Which Bike" forum.
Contact Overland Solutions for all your custom modifications and setup for overland travel.

7 Litre Camel Tank Lets You Explore More, Click to Find out More!

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 21 Jun 2007
Boxer2V's Avatar
Registered Users
HUBB regular
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Dundee, Scotland , UK.
Posts: 35
Preparing a '79 R80 for overland trip - UK to Vladivostok

Preparing my R80/7 for a long and rugged ( but not tough!) overland trip.

Mostly road of varying grades and some track and trail. Solo with hard panniers.

I'll describe the bike and perhaps some of you will identify an area which will require special treatment or something you think I missed.

THE BIKE:-
is fairly low mileage for the year, has been very very well preserved and maintained and many parts were replaced only because they had been on the bike a long time and looked a little old rather than because of any failure.

ELECTRICS and ignition systems:
Have replaced most major components, diodes and relays. Alternator had a rebuild 3 years and less than 100 miles ago. ( The bike has done 15 miles in two years). New battery ( 28 amp) fitted and new High Output Voltage regulator on order.
Question about ignition system:
Do I keep existing points system or change to electronic.
Also, should I fit the OEM Voltage regulator or an Electronic one fitted on later bikes.

ENGINE-TRANSMISSION:-
Engine was replaced in 1984 and think it has done 25,000 approx In general good shape, runs well and has no known issues. No smoke, no noises, plenty power. Very reliable starter. First push of the button on a good battery Even after sitting for a while.
Gearbox is good. Typical R80. No known issues apart from icky non adjustable gear change linkage which will be replaced by something better.
Bevel box and shaft seem sound, no issues and no untoward noises. Due to the time in mothballs, everything will be well cleaned, topped up and regreased etc.


THE REST:
Bing 32mm Flat top carbs have just been serviced and all new rubbers, grommets, throttle and choke cables. All new filters.
Brakes ( original twin ATE fronts and drum rear) have been overhauled and in good shape. New Cast iron rotors on front but still got the undertank master cylinder set up which all seems to work OK.
Shockers are in good shape for commuting but seem original so maybe scope for improvement here.
Frame and metalwork is solid with umpteen coats of Hammerite built up over the years. Just fitted a Surefoot sidestand and need to fix the sticky centrestand.
Everything else on the bike is bog standard and in good shape. I put a Krauser 'K' Frame on for the Panniers and top box. It seems stronger than the BMW metal tube one.

That's about it. The bike is in fairly good shape and is undergoing a full service and any tatty bits being replaced with new.
All this is great for normal use but is it enough for the trip. What have I missed and what should I beef up for that sort of long trip and not all of it in particularly good conditions.

Thanks in advance.
Ian..
__________________
If you never make mistakes, you ain't trying..
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 29 Jun 2007
Gold Member
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Posts: 188
Ian

Two things spring immediately to mind after reading your post.

1. Rear suspension unit - what make is it? The original? You might want to consider changing this for an Ohlins which are reputed to be excellent. If it's a Hagon unit, I heard really bad reports on these at the recent HU meeting when not one but two failed on Africa Twins when the tops snapped off.

2. Wiring - If you are going to ride with dipped headlights on for any period of time, you might want to consider upgrading some of the wiring as the wires are a tad on the small side and could overheat. You'll need to speak to an electrical expert to discover which ones to replace but all of the earth wires need upgrading.

Regards

Paul
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 29 Jun 2007
Boxer2V's Avatar
Registered Users
HUBB regular
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Dundee, Scotland , UK.
Posts: 35
Preparing R80 for Russia

Hi Paul,

Thanks for the tips. Appreciated.

About the Suspension, I will be fitting heavier duty progressive springs to the front as part of a planned upgrade anyway. The twin shocks on the rear are stock BMW ( police) spec. I have been looking at what to replace them with and if I have to get Ohlins, then I certainly will.
Since the point of the trip is to take a standard police bike, with standard Krauser panniers and top box, I will be travelling light (as I always do!). Basically, that means if it will go inside a box, (or tank bag) it can come. If it has to hang off the bike, it gets dumped. I wear the same clothes till they fall off then buy more enroute. The exception is my BMW riding gear, thermals and waterproofs. These are the only clothes that stay with me. Everyhing else is minimal, almost survival. ( Ray Mears on wheels!)
I travelled like this in my army days and find no need to take the contents of my garden shed with me now.
Point is, I won't be carrying an abnormal load so my only concern is that the suspension is good enough for dodgy surfaces for prolonged periods.

Regarding electrics, I have just upgraded every thing, Battery, Stator, diode board, voltage regulator, new relays and anything else I could think of. I'm pretty much stuck with the police wiring which has been thoroughly checked out. I even bought a spare wiring loom off ebay so that I could use the proper grade wiring for all the wee extra circuits I put in for this and that. I have rewired the head/running lamp so that only the running lamp ( with brighter LED) can be switched on instead of dip beam. That saves a few watts. ( it is by-passable should someone question the legality in some countries) Added take-offs for trickle charger or optimate and also a connection for solar panel trickle charger which sits on top of the top box. ( It is velcro'd on and can be stowed away) I have also added an easier to get to fuse box ( marine quality) and added a couple of fuses. Only other thing to do is fabricate a cut out switch for the surefoot sidestand I got off ebay. Needless to say, a mini-multimeter and some spare wiring will be going with me.

Since the bike has had a good overhaul ( it'd been laid up 2 years) but not an actual a re-build, I will at some point before the big trip think about re-newing all the major chassis and frame bearings / seals etc.

Being a good boy scout, I have tried to think of everything and since half the fun for me is in the planning and preparation, I don't mind doing what's got to be done. Even if I never did the trip ( not an option) I will have one hell of a motorcycle.

So, thanks again for the very relevant tips.
Ian.
__________________
If you never make mistakes, you ain't trying..
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 29 Jun 2007
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 1,500
a couple of very small points.
I would replace the needles and needle jets. On my high mileage bike it made more than 40km per tankful difference.
Motobins sell a bright 20 watt 'pilot' light that uses a lot less current for your riding light.
you could order all of these parts from them. it would be worth setting up an account, then if you are in need of anything you will already be a customer.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 30 Jun 2007
Boxer2V's Avatar
Registered Users
HUBB regular
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Dundee, Scotland , UK.
Posts: 35
R80 Overhaul

Quote:
Originally Posted by oldbmw View Post
a couple of very small points.

I would replace the needles and needle jets. On my high mileage bike it made more than 40km per tankful difference.
Motobins sell a bright 20 watt 'pilot' light that uses a lot less current for your riding light.
you could order all of these parts from them. it would be worth setting up an account, then if you are in need of anything you will already be a customer.
Hi.
Thanks for the tips.
I have given the carbs a strip down, clean and a renewed some gaskets,rubber inlets, O rings, diagphrams etc but not much else since they were running OK before. However, I will take your advice and give them the full monty. I read a lot of stuff on 'snowbums' Airhead page ( That guy is an encyclopedia, where does he get the time?) and kind of scared myself into ordering new floats too. A pair of vacuum gauges are on the way ( ebay again) so I can take care of the balancing. I'm also about to renew the fuel hoses so that begs a new question.
Should I fit in-line fuel filters? Again, Snowbum kind of got me wondering since he states that these inline filters mess with fuel delivery. (10 pages of very complicated explanations as to why!).. Anyone got an opinion?
I personally thought it would be a good idea.
Regarding the running light. Again, I shall follow your advice. The LED was OK but I'd rather go with the bulb that was made for the job.

Currently overhauling the front end and messing about with wheels and tyres but thats another story.
Thanks again.
Ian
__________________
If you never make mistakes, you ain't trying..
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 30 Jun 2007
Gold Member
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Posts: 188
Ian
My BMW R100/7 ran for years with inline filters; never any problems.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 30 Jun 2007
Boxer2V's Avatar
Registered Users
HUBB regular
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Dundee, Scotland , UK.
Posts: 35
In-Line fuel filters.

Paul,

Thanks for the confirmation.

Since asking around on the subject, I have been getting a lot of:-
" Yeah! I heard that too but they ran OK on my bike"

I think it's a case of, yes, in theory and if you took oodles of measurement in various conditions, you may find a slight drop in fuel flow. In a real life situation, it does not seem to ( noticeably) affect running at all.

I am sure, and logic dictates, that the filter will impede flow slightly. The article I read seemed to suggest that, due to one factor and another, gravity feed, restricted flow, big big carb, vacuum in the tank, it was made in Germany in January and a fish blew a bubble in the Atlantic just before full moon.) and in certain circumstances ( throttle setting, road speed, how many litres in the tank, ambient temp etc etc) , fuel starvation 'MAY' occur. Well I guess this 'MAY' may just refer to MAY 32nd Two thousand and twenty twelfth according to all the people who have now told me that they use them with no side effects other than cleaner fuel.
That's what I want to hear.
Thanks.
Ian
__________________
If you never make mistakes, you ain't trying..
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 30 Jun 2007
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 1,500
The big risk with a partial fuel flow reduction on a bmw is it will make your engine run lean, and then at high throttle openings you have a high likleyhood of melting pistons.
It is easier to clean carbs.
bmw fuel flow is barely sufficient when it is fine so cant really accept any degradation. Better to fuel up regularly so you dont use the trash that gets released when you switch to reserve.
As to the argument, it worked fine in my bike.. well it is perfectly possible to cross the road without looking. and no one here who was hit by a bus will report the accident. That does not make it the preferred method. Be wise and choose the option which 'fails safe'.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 1 Jul 2007
Boxer2V's Avatar
Registered Users
HUBB regular
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Dundee, Scotland , UK.
Posts: 35
OK or not OK, that is the question..!

Quote:
Originally Posted by oldbmw View Post
................As to the argument, it worked fine in my bike.. well it is perfectly possible to cross the road without looking. and no one here who was hit by a bus will report the accident. That does not make it the preferred method. Be wise and choose the option which 'fails safe'.
Good point well taken! I will look further into it!
( I prefer to fail safe if fail I must.. but I try not to fail in the first place!)

I suppose this issue may well apply to another topic which I was going to raise at a future date but now would seem a good time!

I have heard the same logic applied to whether or not you can use unleaded petrol in a BMW boxer. The two previous owners of my bike have both said they had used unleaded for years with ' no problem!'
I have since learned that using unleaded may not give rise to a 'sudden death' situation but may gradually degrade the valves/seats over time resulting in some costly damage. The fact that my bike runs very well at the moment does not negate the possibility that some damage is occuring, albeit at a slow rate. Since the bike has only done a few hundred miles in 6 years, any slow degradation is maybe not going to be obvious.
Since I am currently giving the bike a thorough 'makeover, I had intended leaving the engine alone until after the bike is MOT'd ( annual safety test in UK!) and Road Taxed.
Since I am not sure if my engine CAN run (undamaged) on unleaded since the engine was replaced with a new 1984 engine. ( By the Police I believe!), I think it important I find out.
So, how can I tell , by visual/physical check, if my engine is 'Unleaded'.
OR
Is there a way to find out by engine number.

Since I believe the conversion is quite quite costly, What would be my best options?, bearing in mind I am about to put some serious mileage on it.
Some of those miles may quite well be fuelled by some dodgy petrol. ( If the stories are true!) so I want to give the bike the best chance of making it and not getting egg on by face! ( or crud in my carbs.)


Thanks a bunch for the input. It all helps so keep the comments coming!
Ian.
__________________
If you never make mistakes, you ain't trying..
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 1 Jul 2007
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 1,500
IF it were me I would ask Motobins, or post a question on Welcome to Boxerworks.com

I think you are ok, I think about 1982 is when they started making the low quality fuel engines for the 800cc. I think if there is a blue dot on the underside of your cylinder head you are definitely ok. I would just run it anyway, who knows how many thousands of carefree miles it will run. Changing worn out valve seats cost no more than changing out your near new ones.

I did know the answer to this once, as i researched which bike to get before I bought mine. I went for a 1985 monoshock, because this model is set up to use poor fuel , and does not have the drivetrain issues attributed to the parlever models. or spline issues with the earlier bikes.
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 7 Jul 2007
Registered Users
HUBB regular
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: UK
Posts: 29
Hi Boxer2v,

I have been reading your thread on the vladivostock trip and I seriously admire your courage.

But on a more helpful point, the boxer engines from 1985 on can run on unleaded anything earlier will damage the valve seats for sure "eventually".

And another thing you should consider is lowering the compression ratio to improve running on poor quality fuel, this is best done by using base gaskets on the bottom of the cylinder barrel (they have an "o" ring as standard). James Sherlock in Devon can supply these and he is an excellent supplier of BMW stuff new or used, and no I don't have any connection with them other than a satisfied customer.

Good luck Ian.
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 7 Jul 2007
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 1,500
xr200
re the compression plates, very good advice.
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 7 Jul 2007
Dodger's Avatar
Large Golden Member
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: BC, Canada
Posts: 1,098
Hi Ian it sounds like you have prepped your bike well and have the knowledge to keep her running well .
I was wondering if maybe you could get a pair of heads which are suitable for unleaded and fit them instead of going to the expense of converting yours .
For what it's worth [probably not much ] I was worried about this for my seventies bikes ,Nortons and Yamahas ,and after a lot of research came to the conclusion that only cast iron headed engines were likely to see valve recession .
You could always take along a couple of cans of lead substitute .
__________________
Blessed are the cracked, for they let in the light. - Spike Milligan
"When you come to a fork in the road ,take it ! When you come to a spoon in the road ,take that also ."
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 10 Jul 2007
Gold Member
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Posts: 188
The engine of my R100/7 was modified by Jim Cray over ten years ago when he not only balanced the pistons and con rods - there was quite a difference between the original pair - but fitted hardened valve seats and twin plugged the heads. The bike has run on unleaded petrol ever since, the engine is smoother than ever and the fuel consumption is excellent.

And ten years of using fuel filters has not resulted in melted pistons either. My R100GS-PD has fuel filters as does my Pan. In fact just about every bike I've ever owned had them.
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 16 Jul 2007
Contributing Member
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Sydney, NSW, Australia
Posts: 1,366
Do not run the 'Hi output' voltage regulator .. it is ment for town bikes with lots of electrical load - not crusing down the highway .. or even a dirt road with little electrical load. The so called 'Hi output' voltage regulators tend to set the battery voltage high - leading to boiling the battery dry .. unless you want to keep replacing the water in the battery daily .. stay away from them.

Use the standard points system - why spend money when what you have works? Yes the electronic system requires less maintance .. but it is not so easily fixed either. So use what you have.

As for the fuel filters .. and the lack of fuel in a standard bmw system,.. Guys .. clean the tank to get the gunk out - including the petcocks ... then it will run fine flat out all day as far as the fuel is concerned!!! Don't for get the carby float valves - clean than too .. above the valve. If you are worried about it - measure the rate of fuel flow .. think mine was about a liter every 2 minutes .. at that rate a full tank would be gone in about an hour .. at say 100 miles (this is an 80- - not a 100) that is .. 160 km/32l = umm about 5km/l = about 22.5km/gal = about 15 miles to the gallon .. realistically -the bike does not drink that much?! Get a life...


----- Your biggest problem? Probably your worry about "not all of it in the best possible condition". At the end of the trip it will be in a more worn condition - and look less .. but you will then have the confidence to ride it back!!!

Humm maybe the above samll bit should go in the FAQ answers section :P
__________________
---
Regards Frank Warner
motorcycles BMW R80 G/S 1981, BMW K11LT 1993, BMW K75 G/S

Last edited by Frank Warner; 16 Jul 2007 at 03:31.
Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 Registered Users and/or Members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Vladivostok Customs IMPORTANT!!!! DanTCook Northern Asia 2 24 Dec 2009 15:18
R80/7 UK to Vladivostok. (Then to Korea) Boxer2V Route Planning 4 21 Jun 2007 19:57
Fushiki to Vladivostok ferry help. joemamamaui Northern Asia 10 17 Jun 2007 12:39
Getting bikes out of Vlad - how KenButler Northern Asia 6 23 Aug 2006 12:39
Needs comments to cross Russia Vladivostok to Germany LKK Northern Asia 5 11 May 2005 07:48

 
 


HU DVD Summer Special!

Now that summer is here, get On the Road! Take 30% off the Achievable Dream - On the Road! 2-DVD set until August 31 only. Get On the Road! Learn the tips to staying healthy, happy and secure on your motorcycle adventure!

Our veteran travellers share their tips (and great stories) for staying healthy, happy and secure on your motorcycle adventure.

"A fantastic, informative and inspirational DVD."

"It's brilliant - thank you very much!"

Check it out at the HU Store! Remember to use Coupon Code 'ONTHEROAD' on your order when you checkout.


Renedian Adventures

What others say about HU...

"I just wanted to say thanks for doing this and sharing so much with the rest of us." Dave, USA

"Your website is a mecca of valuable information and the DVD series is informative, entertaining, and inspiring! The new look of the website is very impressive, updated and catchy. Thank you so very much!" Jennifer, Canada

"...Great site. Keep up the good work." Murray and Carmen, Australia

"We just finished a 7 month 22,000+ mile scouting trip from Alaska to the bottom of Chile and I can't tell you how many times we referred to your site for help. From how to adjust your valves, to where to stay in the back country of Peru. Horizons Unlimited was a key player in our success. Motorcycle enthusiasts from around the world are in debt to your services." Alaska Riders

contest pic

10th Annual HU Travellers Photo Contest is on now! This is an opportunity for YOU to show us your best photos and win prizes!

NEW! HU 2014 Adventure Travel T-shirts! are now available in several colors! Be the first kid on your block to have them! New lower prices on synths!

HU 2014 T-shirts now in!

Check out the new Gildan Performance cotton-feel t-shirt - 100% poly, feels like soft cotton!


What turns you on to motorcycle travel?


Global Rescue, WORLDwide evacuation services for EVERYONE

Global Rescue is the premier provider of medical, security and evacuation services worldwide and is the only company that will come to you, wherever you are, and evacuate you to your home hospital of choice. Additionally, Global Rescue places no restrictions on country of citizenship - all nationalities are eligible to sign-up!


New to Horizons Unlimited?

New to motorcycle travelling? New to the HU site? Confused? Too many options? It's really very simple - just 4 easy steps!

Horizons Unlimited was founded in 1997 by Grant and Susan Johnson following their journey around the world on a BMW R80 G/S motorcycle.

Susan and Grant Johnson Read more about Grant & Susan's story

Membership - help keep us going!

Horizons Unlimited is not a big multi-national company, just two people who love motorcycle travel and have grown what started as a hobby in 1997 into a full time job (usually 8-10 hours per day and 7 days a week) and a labour of love. To keep it going and a roof over our heads, we run events (22 this year!); we sell inspirational and informative DVDs; we have a few selected advertisers; and we make a small amount from memberships.

You don't have to be a Member to come to an HU meeting, access the website, the HUBB or to receive the e-zine. What you get for your membership contribution is our sincere gratitude, good karma and knowing that you're helping to keep the motorcycle travel dream alive. Contributing Members and Gold Members do get additional features on the HUBB. Here's a list of all the Member benefits on the HUBB.


Books & DVDs

amazon

All the best travel books and videos listed and often reviewed on HU's famous Books page. Check it out and get great travel books from all over the world.


Motorcycle Express for shipping and insurance!

Motorcycle Express

MC Air Shipping, (uncrated) USA / Canada / Europe and other areas. Be sure to say "Horizons Unlimited" to get your $25 discount on Shipping!
Insurance - see: For foreigners traveling in US and Canada and for Americans and Canadians traveling in other countries, then mail it to MC Express and get your HU $15 discount!




All times are GMT +1. The time now is 15:43.