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Old 09-13-2010, 09:39 AM   #1
vacantstare OP
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airhead valve covers

Hi-

I have recently become very interested in airheads, and I've been doing a lot of reading online about them. I have a couple of questions about valve covers that I can't find the answer to online.

The valve cover design changed at some point from this:
http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_2AyNtz5ZqY...h/r100T-13.jpg

to this:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/3395407...6722/lightbox/

Is the older one what's called a 'bonehead' ?

Did this change come about with the introduction of the /7 series?

Are the two designs interchangeable? I like the older one much better, but as I'm shopping for a boxer of my very own, I wouldn't want to pass on a good /7 just because the valve covers aren't the ones I like.

thanks for any insights
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Old 09-13-2010, 09:42 AM   #2
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I have both a R60/5, older design and a R100RS, new design. I like both but have read that yes, they are interchangeable. But someone with more knowledge might chim in here and support or deny that. As far as I know, they are. I have seen more modern airheads post /6 with older covers, and think it does look cool. I do like my more modern ones too on the RS though to tell the truth.
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Old 09-13-2010, 09:43 AM   #3
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The change happened in 1977, with the introduction of the /7's. I have never heard of one being called a bonehead ... however the earlier ones were called 'peanut' valve covers by some.

The /7 valve covers are supposed to be a bit stronger than the peanut covers. The covers are interchangable ... they have the same mounts and mounting surfaces.

The peanut covers do look a bit more retro, eh?
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Old 09-13-2010, 09:44 AM   #4
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Yes the valve covers are interchangable. Or at least a pair of the old style ones will fit on a /7. I understand that the newer style are stronger if you drop the bike (mine are pretty gouged up!). Anyone out there know where to find the old style covers?
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Old 09-13-2010, 09:45 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Claim Jumper
Anyone out there know where to find the old style covers?

Ebay. Motobins. Boxerworks. etc.
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Old 09-13-2010, 09:46 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Claim Jumper
Yes the valve covers are interchangable. Or at least a pair of the old style ones will fit on a /7. I understand that the newer style are stronger if you drop the bike (mine are pretty gouged up!). Anyone out there know where to find the old style covers?
Exactly right. Old style covers can be had from many sources including Bob's BMW, Motobins and your local dealer probably by special order. Used around as well, such as Fleabay, etc.
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Old 09-13-2010, 09:48 AM   #7
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I have to look twice when I see a newer post 77 airhead with old covers. It looks funny on bikes like the RT or RS!
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Old 09-13-2010, 09:54 AM   #8
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you guys rock!

I typed that, went for a cup of coffee, and when I got back, all my questions answered.

thanks very much.
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Old 09-13-2010, 10:21 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sniper X
I have to look twice when I see a newer post 77 airhead with old covers. It looks funny on bikes like the RT or RS!
I dont think they look that bad on an RS, BMW left the old style covers on for this pic

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Old 09-13-2010, 10:33 AM   #10
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The don't look bad on the RS, I just like the new design looks on them. If mine had the old design on it I would leave them on it for sure. Now if it was a R100 classic.....I would be seeking a set of Peanut covers.
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Old 09-13-2010, 10:48 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Claim Jumper
Yes the valve covers are interchangable. Or at least a pair of the old style ones will fit on a /7. I understand that the newer style are stronger if you drop the bike (mine are pretty gouged up!). Anyone out there know where to find the old style covers?

TRY a BMW dealer.
They are still available although not cheap. BUT they are much better quality than the repro units being sold all over the world.
The repros are manufactured in China and are a little less robust than the factory "peanut" covers.
An easy way to tell if they are factory or not, the repros do not have the small roundel cast into the inside like the factory ones do.
As far as the interchangeability is concerned, think of it this way, they all share the same gasket. That is a give away right there. I've even put a pair of the 70-76 covers on a /2 (used a longer center stud) and it looked like a R50S!
Actually that is where they took the design from. The R50S had one of a kind valve covers. They were a little shallower with one less cooling fin, but looked liked the later /5 /6 covers.
Late 1976 (77 model year) introduced the squarish valve covers in plain and then Black. They are actually different from left to right which is why they are marked links und rechts accordingly.
The angle of the fins are off kilter to match the offset of the fins on the heads. They will work on either side but look a little odd when put on wrong.
Yes they are thicker and stronger and also quieter.

Robert

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Old 09-13-2010, 10:58 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wirewrkr

TRY a BMW dealer.
Where, if you want, you can get chrome plated versions.
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Old 09-13-2010, 11:13 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wirewrkr

TRY a BMW dealer.
They are still available although not cheap. BUT they are much better quality than the repro units being sold all over the world.
The repros are manufactured in China and are a little less robust than the factory "peanut" covers.
An easy way to tell if they are factory or not, the repros do not have the small roundel cast into the inside like the factory ones do.
As far as the interchangeability is concerned, think of it this way, they all share the same gasket. That is a give away right there. I've even put a pair of the 70-76 covers on a /2 (used a longer center stud) and it looked like a R50S!
Actually that is where they took the design from. The R50S had one of a kind valve covers. They were a little shallower with one less cooling fin, but looked liked the later /5 /6 covers.
Late 1976 (77 model year) introduced the squarish valve covers in plain and then Black. They are actually different from left to right which is why they are marked links und rechts accordingly.
The angle of the fins are off kilter to match the offset of the fins on the heads. They will work on either side but look a little odd when put on wrong.
Yes they are thicker and stronger and also quieter.

Robert


Awesome. Thanks for the info. My "free" R100/7 continues to cost me...$700 and counting so far.
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Old 09-13-2010, 11:39 AM   #14
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The other clue regarding interchangeability is that the later R100R/Mystic came from the factory with peanut covers.
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Old 09-13-2010, 12:33 PM   #15
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I would love to have a hat that looked like a peanut cover! That would be brilliant! HMMM< maybe hit on a marketing jewel here!
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