Darryl.Richman's picture

Rumors of more BMWs

At least as of this posting, I am the only entry running a BMW. Lots of Harleys (16), Hendersons (8‍), Indians (7). And there are single entries of a few other brands: BSA, Excelsior, Rudge and Triumph. I am not sure, but the Rudge might be the smallest bike entered, if it's a 350cc model. Otherwise, the Triumph and my R52 are the smallest displacement entries at 500cc.

But I understand that there are at least two other entries out there waiting to be added to the official list.

Club member #1081, Jack Wells, whose extensive collection you may have seen in the South east or at many of the past BMW MOA Rallies, says he has a 1929 R11 he will be entering. The first year R11 is essentially an R62 with a pressed steel frame. This should be a formidable competitor, the preßstahl starr rahmen (pressed steel rigid frame) is very rugged, and who wouldn't want to have an additional 50% horsepower advantage (over the R52's team of 12 horses)?

Also, it seems as if John Landstrom over at Blue Moon Cycle (featured in the club's current magazine issue, btw), has sold a 1928 R62 to a rider named Joe Gimpel, Jr., whose intention is to enter with it. This information comes from Cannonballer Jeff Alperin's website.

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1928BMW R 62

joseph gimpel jr.'s picture

IT is in a couple hundred pieces but we are on our way to put the old girl back on the road!
up dates; no felt seals all new rubber seals ,bearings in engine & gearbox and lets not leave out pistons & valves.
Still need some parts but it is well on its way!!!!!!!!!!!

Best of luck to you! It took

Darryl.Richman's picture

Best of luck to you! It took me three years to get my R52 into a pretty reliable condition, but even after that, there have been "surprises".

--Darryl Richman
http://darryl.crafty-fox.com
"Bling is not made in Germany" --OTL, 12/05

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Darryl.Richman's picture

My Bike's history

I will mention this or that about the history of the bike here, but I have an exhaustive thread about my 1928 R52 over on my personal website. Rather that retype it and reformat it here, I direct you to that location. But feel free to ask questions here and I will be happy to talk about anything I've missed.

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Darryl.Richman's picture

Ride 'Em, Don't Hide 'Em


Photo © Anastasia Keriotis/Dharma Love

If I were to have a motto, that one would fit well. Although I very much appreciate the beauty of a fully restored bike, nothing beats kicking it over and taking it out on the road. The feel of the motorcycle as it heels over in a turn or runs along down a little used road, opening up vistas in front as it flees trouble behind, is a wondrous and magical thing. And you almost certainly share that thought, since you're visiting this site and my blog on it.

When the first Cannonball was announced and then run in 2010, it was amazing. 45 people putting up incredibly valuable motos anciens, intending to ride them hard, put them away wet, and then do it again the next day. Lather, rinse, repeat for more than two weeks and over 3200 miles. It was inspiring!

But that event was not available to we BMW fans. BMW did not exist until 1918 and was building aircraft motors at that time. It wasn't until 1923 that BMW introduced its iconic R32 and set the pattern for its motorcycles for the next (so far) 89 years.

Now, the second running of the Cannonball has been announced and the route is longer and harder: over 3800 miles from just outside New York City to San Francisco, crossing over the High Rockies and the Shasta Trinity Wilderness (where a one day route looks to have over 10,000 feet of elevation gain and loss). But this time, motorcycles built through 1929 are allowed. And that gives me my entrée.

In 2004 I bought a 1928 R52 from S. Meyer in Germany. (I will post more about the bike, but you can see the basic information about it by clicking on the BMW Models link over in the left sidebar.) It came with full registration information back to 1954.

I had a significant amount of work done while the bike was still in Germany, and then my friend Sascha and I rode the bike in several vintage events in the German states of Baden Würtemburg and Rhineland Palatinate. In 2006 I brought the bike home and have since ridden it to close events and trucked it to further events. Until last month, the longest day I had spent on it was a ride to a vintage picnic, where I put about 100 miles on the bike. Otherwise, I have ridden it locally, usually in 30-50 mile rides. All in all, the bike has probably accumulated somewhat more than 2,000 miles. (It's hard to tell exactly, because the odometer "sticks" at 10s, 100s, and 1000s, and so there are hundreds of kilometers missing from it.)

As soon as I found out about the next running of the Cannonball, I thrilled at the thought of participating. What an adventure! The chance to help add BMW to the list of marques. And just the sheer pleasure of ambling along across the continent. Although I know the start will come soon enough, I can hardly wait.

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Can Envy Have a Pinstripe

Peter's picture

Ahh Darryl does it again, the poster boy of the club, the chairman of the style council and now the King of the Cannonball Run. I wish I was there to cheer you on Darryl but alas I shall watch from afar and await the updates. Go strong the R52 and safe passage Mr Richman.

Darryl the check is in the mail

jrapose's picture

Darryl, I know this is expensive, and I don't want my name on yer truck...but I will send you some gas money...$250

I love the adventure !

Joel Rapose

More Ideas on Leaking Heads

Paat Tobin's picture

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Darryl.Richman's picture

About the Motorcycle Cannonball and My Blog:


Photo © Ian Schmeisser

In case you haven't heard about the Motorcycle Cannonball event, here is a brief description: In 2010, Lonnie Isam organized the first Motorcycle Cannonball, in honor of "Cannonball" Baker's historic 11 day cross country ride. In the 2010 run, 45 riders started on the pier at Kitty Hawk, NC and 37 finished at the Santa Monica, CA pier. All were riding motorcycles built before 1916, and 10 of them achieved perfect scores, covering every one of the 3294 miles under their own power.

In 2012, Isam is reprising the Cannonball. The route will run from Newburgh, NY (just outside New York City) to San Francisco, CA, from September 7th through the 23rd. This time the route will be longer (just under 4,000 miles) and more difficult (passing over the high Rockies), but he is allowing motorcycles built before 1930 to join the fun.

This is where I come in. The original run precluded participation by a rider mounted on a BMW, as the company did not exist until 1918 and didn't produce a motorcycle until 1923. For the 2012 run, I have entered my 1928 R52. My intention is to share this adventure with you, here, on the VBMWMO's website.

My personal website is now set up to offer the following sponsorship opportunities so you can participate in Team Boxer Rebellion: