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Old 07-25-2013, 11:22 AM   #16
Hookalatch
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I don't know if your bike is equipped with a steering damper or not. I was finding it harder to hold a straight line thru corners when I first switched to short low handlebars and found putting the steering damper on the first setting helped with that. I have gotten used to the bars now and prefer not using it. Maybe that will help you?

Chuck
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Old 07-25-2013, 12:04 PM   #17
drj434343 OP
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Originally Posted by Hookalatch View Post
I don't know if your bike is equipped with a steering damper or not. I was finding it harder to hold a straight line thru corners when I first switched to short low handlebars and found putting the steering damper on the first setting helped with that. I have gotten used to the bars now and prefer not using it. Maybe that will help you?

Chuck
Good idea, I will play with that. My damper does indeed work, although the manual says setting 1 is for "rough roads" and setting 2 for "extremely rough roads"; implying that for most purposes you leave it in setting 0. I will give it a try though.
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Old 07-25-2013, 01:03 PM   #18
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Don't listen to ME109, I don't even think he rides a motorcycle!
True that Ozmoses, I ride THE motorcycle.
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Old 07-25-2013, 02:03 PM   #19
DoktorT
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drj434343 View Post
The rear shocks are not original. They are Koni's, and the PO stated they're about 5 years old but with only 4K miles (he rode very little in the last few years). The front is probably all original. My plan was to refresh the fluid and probably leave it like that for now as the forks are not leaking.

Stand over the seat off the stand, wheels on the ground. Grab the front brake. Now push down and pull up on the bars with gusto. Do it several times. Should be smooth as silk, supple, and always settle quickly to the same level.

Drain the fluid. If it is ugly dark and gritty, tear down the sliders, Remove the bottom plug from the dampners and clean the ball and spring and insides, clean and inspect everything else. Then determine if you need a bunch or a few parts. Do not replace the wiper rings, reuse them. Get it all clean and stock with light fork oil before you decide about changing anything.



I'm finding the bike wanders a bit into sweeping turns at speed, but can't tell if it is a function of my getting used to the shorter bars, or something else. Some of the period reviews I've looked at indicated they did have a tendency to not be 100% sure going into turns.
Billot top triple clamp will make a difference here. The SJBMW/CC products top clamps is my solution for Airheads. Others have started making them in recent years. They really do firm up the front end noticably when installed correctly.

Set the damper to 0 unless negoiting potholes or washboarded grades on dirt roads.

DoktorT screwed with this post 07-25-2013 at 03:33 PM
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Old 07-25-2013, 03:17 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by DoktorT View Post
Billot top triple clamp will make a difference here. The SJBMW/CC products top clamps is my solution for Airheads. Other have started making them in recent years. They really do firm up the front end noticably when installed correctly.
I had previously looked at this, although I don't have enough saddle time yet to really enjoy whatever improvement it may bring.

http://www.pbase.com/toastertan/top_braces
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Old 07-25-2013, 04:34 PM   #21
Plaka
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I've been riding bikes for 1 year; started with a 71' Honda CB500 last summer, although at the time I was looking at older SWB airheads as I always liked those crazy jugs jutting out. The Honda came along at the right time though, so I jumped on it.

This last year of riding convinced me of a few things. A) I needed some kind of fairing protection, the PNW is colder most of the year. B) I needed some kind of storage on bike, but couldn't find non factory options that looked decent on the CB500. C) More power couldn't hurt!

Weeks of reading later, I decided to jump into the RS. Love that fairing, and the Krauser bags! I finally found a smoke red 82' and trailered it across the state after a short test drive.



Since then, I've been on it a few times to get a feel. The first ride was awkward; I wasn't sure about the wallowing suspension, the giant thump power pulses when accelerating, and the riding position on stock bars. The CB500 was sewing machine in comparison. The second ride was different, as soon as I got on it seemed to fit more like a glove; I got more comfortable with the short bars, and began to see some of the charm that everyone raves about. It feels more like a bike I could take a long trip on; the CB500 does not.

That said, I have a lot of learning to do. A Clymer manual is in the mail, and in the meantime I've been exploring what I can throw at this to get it ready for some longer trips. I've also noticed a few things in my first few rides.

1. Charging light and volt meter have minds of their own. The light will go off above 2K RPM, but only sometimes comes back on at idle. The gauge reads about 12.6 V max while riding, and 12.2V idling. Sometimes it stays in the low 12's even when revving. I haven't put a VM on the battery directly yet. Do the gauges normally read low?

2. My oil cooler is cold to the touch after a ride. I've read there is a wax filled oil thermostat that can malfunction and not allow any oil into the cooler, but when I look through parts catalogs like Bike Bandit, a replacement does not seem available. Is it dangerous to ride without this? Could I remove it all together and switch to a vented front cover?

3. My idle has a mind of its own. Sometimes it falls to 1K RPM, sometimes it stays at 1.5K RPM. I've read the mechanical advances on these bikes can become sticky over time. Is this a common problem, or should I look elsewhere? I have confirmed the throttle action of the carbs is strong and returns to base without sticking. They were professionally synced before I got the bike.

4. Is there a good online source for factory parts on these bikes? I'm going to get a bunch of stage zero parts along with many misc odds and ends that are missing. Bike Bandit is the best I've found so far with part blowaparts. Are there other sources?

Cheers,
Jason
gauges should be accurate. Check voltage on the green'black wire. You may have a charging issue (weak voltage reg?) or most likely, a cruddy connection. By 2500 or so you should be getting full charging (13.x volts). You ride an airhead at higher RPMs than other bikes, always over 2500.

No oil cooler action indicates bad thermostat element. Replace it. Also get a thermostat draining bolt for oil changes.

Get an exhaust nut wrench.

Get a swing arm socket.

Make shorting wires for tuning carbs.

Buy go/No-go feeler gauges for setting valves.

Looks like a Reynolds ride-off centerstand. Cee if you can get it up w/ a piece of 3/4 plywood under that.

Definately get the fully vented front cover. Diode board overheats.

High comp and dual plugging is very nice. Just did mine. I get better than sea level performance at 5k. Still working on the tuning. I am using a modified ignition trigger.. But I'd use up what you got to get the money out of it. Ted does excellent work. May be slow. get a time commitment.

if you don't have the later model larger mirrors, they're nice.

There is a small rubber boot on top of the Konis. Lift it to reveal the rebound adjustment. This can also be used to adjust for wear.

Oversized front tires kill the handling. Check what you got against your manual.

Did it come with the tool kit?

Get a 90 degree valve stem adapter (or two). many gas station air fills won't fit other wise. The steering dampener is good if you must ride with a low front tire (causes a weave).

Don't replace anything that works or fix anything not broken. But there are certain bolts and gaskets that are always good to have on the shelf.

What exactly is holding the widshield on?

Trimming he flip lip off the top of the windsheild dramatically improves buffeting and noise. I'm finding the bike very pleasant (but a bit odd looking) with no windsheild.

You can lube the mechanical advance by removing the pop-out cover from the side of the beancan. Easy. Do not put it back, use two layers of aluminum foil tape instead. But when the idle hangs, try pushing down on the throttle levers on the inside of the carbs. Run a tank or two of SeaFoam or Techron additive. That will clean the idle circuits.
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Old 07-25-2013, 04:41 PM   #22
Plaka
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Originally Posted by drj434343 View Post
The rear shocks are not original. They are Koni's, and the PO stated they're about 5 years old but with only 4K miles (he rode very little in the last few years). The front is probably all original. My plan was to refresh the fluid and probably leave it like that for now as the forks are not leaking.

My comparison is to my CB500, on which I installed new Hagons and stiffer front progressive springs. It is a firm ride. The BMW in comparison is soft but so far doesn't feel overly soft. Part of the reason may be that this does not feel like the kind of bike I want to whip around the neighborhood, that's what the Honda is good at. I want to take this on longer rides in the outskirts. The gentle road feel will probably be welcome there.

I'm finding the bike wanders a bit into sweeping turns at speed, but can't tell if it is a function of my getting used to the shorter bars, or something else. Some of the period reviews I've looked at indicated they did have a tendency to not be 100% sure going into turns.
Internal for seals can go bad if fluid not changed regularly. You will lose dampening and have faster front end dive. Having the external seals not leak does not indicate the status of the internal ones. Your plan sound good. Also be real careful with your tire pressures. Try little more in the front. I get no weave or wandering with my '83 (With a CC products top clamp.)

It's a big, heavy, powerful bike. You are an inexperienced rider. Invest more in protective gear. Like body armor or jacket with same, etc.
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Old 07-25-2013, 04:53 PM   #23
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Don't bother with lubing the bean can until you have properly tuned the carbs after a warm-up ride. Having the idle rise is typical of not having warmed the engine before tuning. If this doesn't solve the idle issue then check for air leaks at the carb to head rubber tubing.
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Old 07-25-2013, 06:26 PM   #24
r60man
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drj434343 View Post
The rear shocks are not original. They are Koni's, and the PO stated they're about 5 years old but with only 4K miles (he rode very little in the last few years). The front is probably all original. My plan was to refresh the fluid and probably leave it like that for now as the forks are not leaking.

My comparison is to my CB500, on which I installed new Hagons and stiffer front progressive springs. It is a firm ride. The BMW in comparison is soft but so far doesn't feel overly soft. Part of the reason may be that this does not feel like the kind of bike I want to whip around the neighborhood, that's what the Honda is good at. I want to take this on longer rides in the outskirts. The gentle road feel will probably be welcome there.

I'm finding the bike wanders a bit into sweeping turns at speed, but can't tell if it is a function of my getting used to the shorter bars, or something else. Some of the period reviews I've looked at indicated they did have a tendency to not be 100% sure going into turns.
5 year old Koni's? Maybe they were installed 5 years ago but Koni stopped making shocks about 15 years ago, if my memory serves correctly. Seals and gaskets age, even if it is sitting on a shelf. Get a Ikon rebuild kit and rebuild them.

Check the steering bearings and make sure that they are not notchy or too loose, or too tight, either one will make the bike feel squirmy. Also check the condition of the tires. Airheads give you a very good feel for the road all of the pieces are important.

About the carb sync. There are many things that need to be done for a carb sync to be good. Make sure that the valves are properly adjusted. Double check all of the seals and the air tubes coming from the air box, if there is a air leak you will never get the carbs in proper sync. You trailered the bike across the state? Different conditions can lead to a different sync and adjustment. I just synced my carbs and my bike is running very well right now.
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Old 07-25-2013, 06:35 PM   #25
100RT
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Dont be in a hurry to replace the oil temp thermostat. My 81 R100RT runs at 225 F and the cooler is never hot. I have taken the element out and checked it in boiling water and it is fine. There is no boogie man in that area!
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Old 07-25-2013, 07:40 PM   #26
Plaka
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Originally Posted by r60man View Post
5 year old Koni's? Maybe they were installed 5 years ago but Koni stopped making shocks about 15 years ago, if my memory serves correctly. Seals and gaskets age, even if it is sitting on a shelf. Get a Ikon rebuild kit and rebuild them.

Check the steering bearings and make sure that they are not notchy or too loose, or too tight, either one will make the bike feel squirmy. Also check the condition of the tires. Airheads give you a very good feel for the road all of the pieces are important.

About the carb sync. There are many things that need to be done for a carb sync to be good. Make sure that the valves are properly adjusted. Double check all of the seals and the air tubes coming from the air box, if there is a air leak you will never get the carbs in proper sync. You trailered the bike across the state? Different conditions can lead to a different sync and adjustment. I just synced my carbs and my bike is running very well right now.
My 30+ year old Konis work flawlessly. About 16+ years in service, then in storage about 10 and now back in service 4. The rubber top boots aren't even rotted, although there is some rust between the coils.

Never fix what ain't broke.

The air tubes coming from the airbox make no difference to carb operation unless there is a hole you can stick a finger in. The rubber between the carb and head is critical.

Just saying.

Wholeheartedly agree: the timing and valves need to be right before touching the carbs. Ditto checking the steering bearings (tough on the RS unless they are way out).
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Old 07-26-2013, 12:20 AM   #27
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Looks like a Reynolds ride-off centerstand. Cee if you can get it up w/ a piece of 3/4 plywood under that.

Definately get the fully vented front cover. Diode board overheats.

Did it come with the tool kit?

What exactly is holding the widshield on?
It is a Reynolds, and while much easier to put down, it doesn't allow either wheel to float. I also have the original stand but have heard they are a real pain. Should I switch back?

I only can find vented covers new in primer. Are you suggesting sourcing a used one, or is there a source for painted ones that I don't know about?

It appears to have the complete tool kit, as well as an original manual.

I re-installed the original windshield, using through bolts and black plastic caps the PO had used with an aftermarket Parabellum windshield. Only used in every other hole though, I need to source some more, or switch to black nylon screws.
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Old 07-26-2013, 12:23 AM   #28
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It's a big, heavy, powerful bike. You are an inexperienced rider. Invest more in protective gear. Like body armor or jacket with same, etc.
I have full body armor already used while riding the Honda. Looks kind of funny on that bike, but looks much more appropriate on the BMW. I definitely get the sense I can get myself in trouble on this bike.
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Old 07-26-2013, 05:28 PM   #29
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Congratulations of finding a gem. I've owned three R100RS bikes. Fine machines!
Don't put to much faith in the voltmeter. It will read low due to resistance in the wiring. If this bike were mine, I'd tend to the carburetors and valves, then open up all the wiring loom connectors and clean things up. If the bike was sitting any length of time, you can expect some volt-robbing corrosion in the harness, which can lead to all sorts of worries from the instant you push the starter button.
If you're in the Pacific NorthWet, Hanson's and A&S may be a good source of spares, counsel and information. Then there's the Airhead Club. No end of info available in that motley group! LOL
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Old 07-26-2013, 09:09 PM   #30
Renner
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good score.
love the smoke-red

suggest that you contact an Airhead Airmarshal in your area and get that beemer to the next available tech day.
Odds are excellent that you'll meet other RS owners...

check your pm's
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