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Old 01-08-2012, 05:33 PM   #1
benthic OP
glutton 4 punishment
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Joined: Dec 2011
Location: sunny san diego
Oddometer: 397
R80/7 + a newb = a long road to cafe

hello Inmates!

I've been really learning a lot and enjoying the several airhead build threads here and they have both intimidated me and inspired. Inspired me enough to start my own thread.

a quick background of me:
I took the MSF course here in San Diego back in May 2011, quickly bought a 2007 Honda Shadow Spirit, and promptly crashed it in some local twisties. I spent the next month healing and fixing my bike - the fixing was entirely new to me and mostly cosmetic. The experience was obviously a great lesson in many ways, but it also awakened a hitherto unknown passion for beautiful motorcycles and the desire to make one myself. On December 21, 2011, I couldn't resist anymore and I bought a 1978 BMW R80/7.

So the good news is that the bike runs, and I was able to ride it home, and as far as I can tell, for being 33 years old it is in good shape. I suspect it hasn't been taken care of super well though, and the time has definitely taken some toll.

The things I know are wrong with it:
the gas cap is very finicky - i almost couldn't figure out how it works, but if i'm gentle and talk sweetly, it works
the seat lock doesn't seem to actually lock, but the catch does hold the seat down.
the bags don't have keys, and one of the locks was forced at some point - so they work, but not perfectly
the horn doesn't work, which is funny since the turn signals squeak when you use them!
there is some clunking with the front end, which i've been told might be a neck bearing - i'm working on that.
and when i bought the bike the centerstand almost immediately vibrated loose and fell off - luckily in my garage
the odometer was frozen at 30,000
there is an oil leak somewhere on the bottom of the bike

The things I suspect are wrong with it:
Since I have no basis for comparison it is hard to say, but i think overall it needs a tune up. I'm certainly no expert but it doesn't sound like i think it would if it has some TLC. And I think the same goes for the brakes and suspension. wheel bearings, etc.

So far I have fixed the odometer (thank you internet!) and fixed the center stand - I figured it would be much easier to work on with the center stand instead of that spring loaded side stand (tricky little guy - i almost dropped the bike when the side stand snapped back up!). I also took the bags and bag supports off so the bike would be easier to work on.

My PLAN, is to really fix the bike up mechanically before i think about anything cosmetic. But as i said, i'm a newb with no experience with engines. I can take stuff apart and put it back together, but so far, i don't really understand how they work. At the moment the exhaust is off (to fix the center stand) and I've got some parts coming (gaskets, crush washers), and hopefully this week i'll change the oil and filter, and air filter. I also started taking things off the handlebars to make it easier to clean them up and also get to the triple tree to check out this front end issue...

I'll take any and all crtisism and suggestions! Please, let me know if you have something to share. The bike came with the Clymer manual, and I've been scouring the internet - it is amazing how much information is out there and how many people love these bikes! I've also been reading Ian Falloon's Boxer Twin Bible, which is interesting.

To close this wordy intro-post, some pics:

the Honda and the BMW:) and my teeny tiny garage.

i found and got myself one of these wrenches.

it is hard to tell, but the mufflers shined up awesome! the header pipes not so much.

i'm going to try to find a kit for these and clean them up!

Thanks for reading and I look forward to talking to some of you:)
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