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Somer
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I've noticed that a lot of pre-war BMWs seem to have been renumbered. Was this a new military serial number after they were drafted ? A number stamped in after liberation to match papers ?
Never gotten a definitive answer.

Darryl.Richman
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Surf City, USA (Santa Cruz, CA)
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If you mean that the bikes

If you mean that the bikes have gotten new numbers that are not at all in the range of the original BMW model, I believe that a lot of war survivor bikes were registered to traffic in various countries, but had no papers, and so were locally renumbered to give them a new official life.

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Bruce Frey
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Texas Hill Country, USA
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Re-numbered bikes

I agree with Darryl.

During my time in Europe, I came across a number of bikes, primarily from Hungary and other points east, that had the BMW numbers ground off and re-stamped with typically a 5 digit number. I could never bring myself to buy one of them, though, and may have passed up some bargains. Oh well!

Cheers,

Bruce

Darryl.Richman
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Regardless of what people

Regardless of what people say, correct numbers are important to the price* a bike will command. In this past weekend's MidAmerica auction at Las Vegas, there were two R50/2s for sale, both apparently in pretty good condition. The mismatched numbers bike had a video showing it start and run pretty nicely. It got $5750. The matching numbers bike got $11,000. A third R50/2 was for sale, but it had been converted into a chopper. It's top bid was $4100, and apparently the current owner felt it was worth more than that.

While a mismatched bike may be fun and can still be a "good deal", it will never rise to the price of a matching numbers bike. I think this is because the "collectors" drive the market price, and they want the originality.

*) I have been careful here to talk about price, not value or worth -- when it comes to the market. A bike may have a ton of value to a buyer or a seller and still not be able to get a high price.

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Ton
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Hellendoorn Netherlands
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Re-numbered or not numbered bikes

Hello,

The reason why alot of frame- and engine numbers are removed is as follows.
Alot of these bikes are used during WOII by the Germans, on the East-Front (Poland, Russia).

After the war almost all used bikes are confiscated by local civillian people.

The Germans where (and are) famous by there registration.
If the frame- and engine number are removed the bike is never traceable by any police or government.

Kind regards
Ton

Darryl.Richman
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That makes sense, Ton. If it

That makes sense, Ton. If it doesn't have a number, how can it belong to anyone?

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Pete Murphy
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true

Darryl.Richman wrote:

While a mismatched bike may be fun and can still be a "good deal", it will never rise to the price of a matching numbers bike. I think this is because the "collectors" drive the market price, and they want the originality.

Spot on Darryl. Great news for anyone that is more interested in the experience of the machine than some obsession with numbers. Give me the half price miss matched numbers bike every time as long as it's built correctly. It'll make the same noise, smell the same when hot, and ride the same. You can just enjoy having two for the price of one!

Cheers,
Pete

Pete Murphy
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new numbers

Ton wrote:

Hello,

The reason why alot of frame- and engine numbers are removed is as follows.
Alot of these bikes are used during WOII by the Germans, on the East-Front (Poland, Russia).

After the war almost all used bikes are confiscated by local civillian people.

The Germans where (and are) famous by there registration.
If the frame- and engine number are removed the bike is never traceable by any police or government.

Kind regards
Ton

Also it seems new Russian bikes weren't numbered by the factories. There was no need as they were originally all for the army. Numbers were stamped by the border agency if the bike was exported from Russia apparently. This would explain numbers appearing on the headstock and other unusual places as the same would apply to all bikes including ex Wehrmacht BMW's.

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