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Old 03-09-2010, 04:40 AM   #1
ipanemaguy OP
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Question It's an airhead, but which one?

Went to look at an R75/5 for sale and the guy had a bare BMW frame wrapped in plastic hanging in the garage. When I asked about it he said, "Oh, it's a frame I had nickel plated for a project".

Both the frame and swingarm were there, beautifully nickel plated; it even had side braces and a braced swingarm! He asked $150 so I took it home. The plating shop must have removed the BMW "label" plate at the head, and the VIN if on the side was no longer visible.

QUESTION: how do you identify what model a BMW frame is without the maker's marks??
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Old 03-09-2010, 06:29 AM   #2
bmwrench
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Post some pictures.
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Old 03-09-2010, 06:55 AM   #3
Uncle Ernie
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uh- ask the guy you bought it from?

If I went to the trouble to have a frame plated, you can bet I'd know what it is.
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Old 03-09-2010, 07:30 AM   #4
crazydrummerdude
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Pics, man!
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Old 03-09-2010, 08:55 AM   #5
Yarddog
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Have fun titling that thang...
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Old 03-09-2010, 10:45 AM   #6
vanzen
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frame ID

where's the pics ?

Recalled from my often imperfect memory ...
A number of (rather subtle) changes were implemented throughout the years.
Assuming that this is a twin-shock frame:
The "spine" was doubled.
A second transverse tube added to the front "down-tubes".
Brackets were changed and rearranged to accommodate MC and electrics.
SA (drive-shaft tube) diameter was increased ...

On the other hand, although some frames may have desired advantages vs others,
ANY Type-246 or Type-247 engine / trans will fit into ANY Type-246 or Type-247 frame.
Basic frame geometry & engine / trans mount spacing remained unchanged.
Ancillary components may or may not "bolt on" without further consideration.

A twin-shock frame should have the frame # stamped on the throttle side neck-stem plate.

In Mi., a bill of sale and #s check for the frame will get you a title – elswhere ... ????
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Old 03-09-2010, 12:33 PM   #7
Hawk Medicine
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If the frame has no manufacturers plate and (Worse) no numbers, youre probably going to have a Hell of a time getting a title but you did get a bill of sale, right?

That and a visite to your local DMV would be a start.
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Hawk Medicine screwed with this post 03-09-2010 at 03:57 PM
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Old 03-09-2010, 01:50 PM   #8
ipanemaguy OP
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It's not the heart, it's the appendages.

No bill of sale, no marks on head or throttle side. I am thinking of having the frame titled as a "custom", the drive train is not the big issue. It's the; seat, tank, forks.

In my state you can go thru the hassle of DMV paperwork and get it titled if it is 'custom built'. Remains to be seen.
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Old 03-09-2010, 02:46 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ipanemaguy
No bill of sale, no marks on head or throttle side. I am thinking of having the frame titled as a "custom", the drive train is not the big issue. It's the; seat, tank, forks.

In my state you can go thru the hassle of DMV paperwork and get it titled if it is 'custom built'. Remains to be seen.
Normally, for a custom frame, you would have some sort of 'certificate of origin' or something like that...tell ya what, before ya spent a dime on it, I'd take that good advice you got up the line and chat with your local DMV about it...sometimes before they will put a number on it, it must be a legally operable vehicle, meaning that you throw a ton a money at it to get it to pass an inspection, with NO guarantee that it will pass or that you will get a title...risky business...
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Old 03-09-2010, 03:10 PM   #10
Airhead Wrangler
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yarddog
Normally, for a custom frame, you would have some sort of 'certificate of origin' or something like that...tell ya what, before ya spent a dime on it, I'd take that good advice you got up the line and chat with your local DMV about it...sometimes before they will put a number on it, it must be a legally operable vehicle, meaning that you throw a ton a money at it to get it to pass an inspection, with NO guarantee that it will pass or that you will get a title...risky business...
Or just buy a titled crashed frame, and use its papers to get plates for your chrome one. Then just ride it. Never had a cop check my VIN before. Selling it would be tough though.
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Old 03-09-2010, 03:33 PM   #11
Yarddog
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Airhead Wrangler
Or just buy a titled crashed frame, and use its papers to get plates for your chrome one. Then just ride it. Never had a cop check my VIN before. Selling it would be tough though.
VERY risky business...felony risky...would NOT do that...just to back up a $150 purchase...not I...nor would I recommend it...
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Old 03-09-2010, 04:05 PM   #12
Hawk Medicine
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Originally Posted by mymindsok
If the frame has no manufacturers plate and (Worse) no numbers, youre probably going to have a Hell of a time getting a title but you did get a bill of sale, right?

That and a visite to your local DMV would be a start.
Oh... And in addition.... I once sold a pile of frames for a fabricator here in Nor Cal and for each one we had to stamp on a sequential prodiction number and then make up receipts specifying the origins of the frame, not only from the frame shop but from myself, the seller.

With that paperwork, the bike builder could go to the DMV, have the bike inspected and file for a title.

I wouldnt try to wing a bimbo frame past the CHP inspectors here in Nor Cal! Those guys see a lot of bikes and they know thier job. A BMW frame with no numbers would stick out like a sore thumb and questions would be asked.

As Always, YMMV. Just don't piss off the cops!
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Old 03-09-2010, 05:19 PM   #13
Yarddog
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mymindsok
I wouldnt try to wing a bimbo frame past the CHP inspectors here in Nor Cal! Those guys see a lot of bikes and they know thier job. A BMW frame with no numbers would stick out like a sore thumb and questions would be asked.

As Always, YMMV. Just don't piss off the cops!
Agreed...and a nickel plated frame WILL get the interest of one of those folks, because of the obvious issues with covering numbers...

However, I think that nickel plated frame will make one FINE conversation piece!
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Old 03-09-2010, 05:37 PM   #14
Anorak
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What if I put a frame together in my garage? It looks like it's no big deal to register a bike without a vin in CA. I believe they assign a vin and it's a blue tag that is riveted to the frame.
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Old 03-09-2010, 07:20 PM   #15
Hawk Medicine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anorak
What if I put a frame together in my garage? It looks like it's no big deal to register a bike without a vin in CA. I believe they assign a vin and it's a blue tag that is riveted to the frame.
I agree. A nickel plated Airhead frame would be bitchin but ya gotta come up with some numbers that aren't connected to a stolen bike first or it's strictly a garage decoration.

I guess that a call to the CHP would clear up any misunderstandings but AFAIK, in order to qualify for the "Blue Tag" and title, they'll still want to trace the origins of the frame and MY local CHP inspectors definitely aren't gonna go for the okey doke, when they're presented with an obviously factory-built BMW frame, that's missing the numbers.

Yes, those guys can be very helpful once they get to know ya but they're still the po-lice and they get paid to enforce the law!

Check it out yourself. As I said: Those guys aren't stupid and the detectives attached to the DMV are pretty sharp too. Think about it... If they really want to find those numbers, unless they've been welded over and ground down, they can get em off that frame.
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