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San Arthur
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San Antonio, TX
Joined: 04/22/2007
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Dear riders:

I’m taking a 1,200 mile ride on my ’58 R26 next October.
8 days long, from San Antonio to the Big Bend National Park and back.
We’ll have a truck with trailer following us, so if things come to worst I could always pack my things and ride in the truck for the remainder.
The bike is in good running condition.
The engine and gearbox were recently overhauled and I have new tires.
I sense I have a low top speed, but since my speedometer is not working properly I’ll check against my GPS this weekend. The final drive is 4.16.
I’ll also replace the metal air filter with a foam or paper one and check if I gain some extra speed.

My questions to you are:

1. What do you suggest I check and/or replace before I leave?
2. Other than one can of Anti Monkey Butt Powder for myself, what else do I need to bring with me for the R26 (replacement parts).

Your comments will be appreciated.

Sincerely,

San.Arthur.

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San Arthur in San Antonio, Texas
'58 R26 '76 R90S '94 R100GS/PD

schrader7032
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San Antonio, TX
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An R26 in San Antonio...who

An R26 in San Antonio...who knew! Good on you! How many miles a day do you think you're going to make? I've found when riding my /7 over a 10 hour day, I tend to average right around 45 mph. That's with some amount of time at 65 mph and of course stops for gas, food, etc. I would think that you're average speed is going to be something like 25-30 mph, so maybe 300 miles a day at best.

I tend to carry a lot of things for quick repairs. I've taken many long trips on my /7 and one longish one on my R69S. I tend to carry extra engine oil, spark plugs, tire repair kit, air pump, electrical bits like a voltage regulator (/7). Probably some extra wire, rope, duct tape. I suppose I might take a condensor and points, probably some small tube of silicone lubricant. I add a few tools beyond my tool kit, tools that I've found over the years I need to do routine maintenance.

I think you'ld have to let your knowledge of how the bike runs now as a guide to what to bring. I don't know if you'll be pushing the tranny or final drive very hard...does the R26 have an enclosed driveshaft? If you feel you might need oil there, you could carry that...or maybe that's just something you can buy as needed. I like to have my favorite engine oil (BMW) rather than rely on what I can find on the road.

Good luck...take some pictures or have your service crew take some as you ride!!

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Kurt in S.A.
'78 R100/7 '69 R69S '52 R25/2

Bruce Frey
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That is a trip I want to make

That is a trip I want to make from Houston (when it is cooler)!

I would add a set of cables and spare bulbs. Those will probably fit in the headlight shell. If you have room, I would take a spare tube in addition to the repair kit. Make sure you have good tire irons.

Other things that can stop you dead are the coil and the carb float. Is your battery new? If those items are not fresh, I would take spares.

I anxiously await a ride report!

Bruce

San Arthur
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San Antonio, TX
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Thanks for your suggestions

Kurt, is good to know there are e few /2 in town, we should get/ride together, weather permitting. Please PM me.
Bruce thanks for your suggestions and yes the battery is brand new.

My itinerary looks like this:
Day 1, 116 miles; Day 2, 203 miles; Day 3, 120 miles; Day 4, about 160 miles; Day 5, 110 miles; Day 6, about 100 miles; Day 7, about 80 miles and Day 8, 300 miles.
I'm a little concern about the vibrations, after a few hours my hands get num. Maybe I should wrap the grips in foam. What do you think?

Yes, the drive shaft is enclosed and thanks a lot for your suggestion, I'm taking note.
I know will be pushing the R26 very hard and after all the time, sweat and money I have invested it even sims stupid to do it, BUT I fix the bike to use it.
So what do you friends think, would you keep the R26 in the garage or would you take it for a long ride?
I'm curious to find out how far we will go. After WWII this machines were the only transportation available for many people.

Please send you comments and suggestions!

Arturo

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San Arthur in San Antonio, Texas
'58 R26 '76 R90S '94 R100GS/PD

Bruce Frey
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If vibrations are bothersome,

I think your itinerary is certainly realistic. Do it! Ride them, don't hide them!

If vibrations are bothersome, they do make gel grips. You could also use gel bicycle handlebar tape to wrap your existing grips or use some "armaflex" pipe insulation (the black foam insulation) over them. Gel handlebar tape is probably more expensive than gel grips. The pipe insulation is cheap.

I use the gel tape on my road bicycle and it really helps!

Bruce

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I did a similar size ride

I did a similar size ride last year on my R60. I rode from Newcastle, NSW to Melbourne, VIC and back via Canberra, ACT (Australia). I did an oil and spark plug change in Melbourne (half way) - I may not have needed to but I did it anyway. I did the same before leaving and when I returned. The bike started first time every time and put my riding partners (much younger) bike to shame with its smooth running and general good manners. I cleaned the fuel tap, and gave the bike a clean and general tune-up before leaving as well. All basic stuff - cheap insurance if you take it easy, do it thoroughly and use good products.

I had duct tape, spare cables, some wire, a comprehensive tool kit, tube, glue, emergency oil - very basic stuff.

And should you do it?
What reason could there be for restoring a bike other than to ride it? A long ride is appropriate - short trips with the engine temp etc going up and down with traffic and lots of hard braking is frustrating and not great for your bike. Long trips if you give the bike time to warm up every morning are good exercise for everyone involved! I would always take the first few miles nice and easy - let me and the bike wake up appropriately. The key is to take it easy and savor every moment - this is meant to be fun!

scottiesharpe
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I regularly do 300 mile days

I regularly do 300 mile days on my 62 R60. The only things that have ever gone wrong are

- Flat tires (With the cost of tubes, I don't bother repairing them. You can replace a tube with the tire irons in the tool kit. Just undo one bead and set the tube inside.).

- Cracked floats. I have gone through three floats, the brass ones. I always carry two spares. I hear Vech has some plastic ones. I'm going to try them.

- Nuts and bolts. I have lost the pinch bolt on the earles fork axle once on a dirt road. I had a spare generic nut and bolt to replace it. Carry assorted nuts and bolts, insulated and safety wire, about a foot of electrical tape, etc.

- Ignition. My ignition has never failed me and it is all stock. However, I carry a spare coil, plugs, one spark plug wire and cap, points, condensor and a little wrench to undo the condensor wire nut just in case.

- Spare bulbs of course.

- I don't run a battery anymore.

- In case you are out at night, you MUST address your visibility. You will be moving slow and the /2 is a low, thin bike. I have a very bright LED tail lamp that I bought at a bike shop. Get the ones that run on AA, not AAA or button batteries as they run a lot longer and the batteries are easily bought at most fuel stations. It will make you a LOT more conspicuous to have a bright light running. I can't emphasize how bright this light it. You can see it for miles.

My /2 has never left me stranded and I would not hesitate to ride it anywhere.

Traversing the wilderness between Big Sur and King City.

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Scottie Sharpe, Proprietor
Scottie's Workshop, Santa Clara CA
Full Service repairs, maintenance and restoration workshop for vintage and classic BMW Motorcycles http://blog.scottiesharpe.com

San Arthur
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San Antonio, TX
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Day light, if everything goes according to plan, yeah right....

I don't think Murphy's law apply to BMW's 1958 R26 and it's riders?

We are supposed to ride only during day light, but I will follow your advice and bring extra bulbs and use bicycling rear lights.
Thanks scottiesharpe.

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San Arthur in San Antonio, Texas
'58 R26 '76 R90S '94 R100GS/PD

San Arthur
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This is the list so far:

Things to take with me:
ELECTRICAL
• voltage regulator
• spark plugs
• spark plug wire and cap
• condensor
• points
• spare coil
• Ignition
• spare bulbs
• spare cables
• some wire
• very bright LED tail lamp
• foot of electrical tape
TIRES
• tire repair kit
• spare tube
• air pump
• good tire irons.
MAINTENANCE, ETC.
• rope
• duct tape
• tube of silicone lubricant
• carb float
• glue
• Extra engine oil
• Assorted Nuts and bolts
• tools to do routine maintenance
• little wrench to undo the condensor wire nut
• Shop Manual

Things to do:
• Foam insulation for handlebar and foot pegs
• give the bike time to warm up every morning
• take the first few miles nice and easy
• gave the bike a clean
• general tune-up
• cleaned the fuel tap

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San Arthur in San Antonio, Texas
'58 R26 '76 R90S '94 R100GS/PD

thaemlitz3321
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Willard, MO
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I bought some gel bicycle

I bought some gel bicycle gloves and they keep the numbness away. On a long trip, check that you're wrist is not bent, but inline with your arm, this will help the blood to flow better to your hands.

I carry a 10 speed bicycle cable in my pouch. They're long enough you can sling them around anywhere. Use a hose clamp as a cable stay. Then just tie a knot where you need the ball to be. Works for brakes and clutch. Would be a little harder to make a throttle cable because of the small ends.

Hose clamps are strong. Cary some big ones. If a foot peg broke near the motor mount, you could hose clamp the peg onto the frame and not miss a beat. Good for all other bracket repairs as needed. Might be worth looking at brackets that could bend or break in a low speed or standing still tip over. Generic clutch handle from a dirtbike shop might prove handy. Start renting MacGyver episodes from NetFlix Smile

Sand paper to clean plugs, points, etc. Old chopper trick is a match book. Strike zone is sand paper to clean plugs, points. Match book cover thickness is close enough to adjust your points gap.

Old IBA trick is to bring some hard candy. When you're mind starts to wander going across the desert, a taste of sour, or mint, can perk you up. Strap a water bottle where you can drink some on the road.

Man, I'm ready for a trip today. Why Wait Smile

My brother and I did Houston ->Seminole Canyon -> Big Bend several years back. Really great country out there. I hear it's a little rough out there nowadays.

San Arthur
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Itinerary and a question for you all.

Some of you recommended me to take some nuts and bolts.
Which do you recommend I take, what sizes do you think would be more critical or which ones would be very difficult to replace while on the road?

Since this is my first long trip on the R26, m I already over reacting?

ITINERARY
Saturday October 1 / 116 miles
From Vanderpool to Del Rio
Go 337 thru Leakey to Camp wood, south on 55 and turn right on FM334, into Brackettville and then head west on 90 to Del Rio.

Sunday October 2 / 203 miles
Del Rio to Alpine.
Ice cream stop at Judge Roy Bean’s in Langtry, lunch and gas up in Sanderson.

Monday October 3 / 120 miles
Alpine to Balmorhea
Breakfast in Alpine then to Fort Davis and up to the McDonald Observatory for a roll-down, backtrack to Fort Davis for lunch then continue on scenic TX-17 through Wild Rose Pass to Balmorhea.

Tuesday October 4 / 160 miles
Balmorhea to Marfa
Ride scenic TX-17 back to Fort Davis, then ride the Davis Mountain Loop , back to Ft Davis for lunch and continue on to Marfa.

Wednesday October 5 / 110 miles
Marfa to Lajitas
Down through the Shafter ghost town to Presidio for lunch then ride River Road 170 to Lajitas.

Thursday October 6 / 100 miles
Lajitas to The Chisos Basin.
Ride the Big Bend Park and then up to the Basin.

Friday October 7 / 80 miles
Chisos Basin to Marathon.

Saturday October 8 / 300 miles
Marathon to Vanderpool.

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San Arthur in San Antonio, Texas
'58 R26 '76 R90S '94 R100GS/PD

schrader7032
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Your last leg from Marathon

Your last leg from Marathon to Vanderpool...can you make Marathon to Del Rio for gas or will you have to fill in Sanderson? What's your reasonable range on the tank? I'm not getting very good gas mileage on my R25/2 (only 50 mpg) and can only get around 125 miles between stops. That section in west Texas can be a bit lonely for gas. But you do have a support vehicle, so I guess you have a good backup.

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Kurt in S.A.
'78 R100/7 '69 R69S '52 R25/2

jeff dean
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Love this post

I want to make a long trip on my R60/2, perhaps next year. I am thinking around Lake Superior.

San Arthur
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San Antonio, TX
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Test ride # 1 and help, again....

Yesterday I took Zenaida, that’s the name of my R26, for a test run, with and without the oil type air filter.

(I used a GPS to measure the speed).
It runs a little faster and accelerates easier without the filter. I’m thinking on stuffing a paper filter inside the air box. Do you have any suggestions?

I can barely do 58 mph down hill and with tail wind!
I can cruise at 40 mph with ease, but shouldn’t I get a little more out of her?

Is this the normal speed for a R26?

I checked the final drive ratio, is 4.16 and the stamped number on the gearbox is 25/6.
I haven’t checked the flywheel revolution versus the rotation of the gearbox output flange but as soon as I can convince my wife to help me count in a 99F+ garage I’ll do it; unless you know a way of doing this by myself.

My tires are 3.50s, what if a change both for a set of 3.25? On the internet 3.50 look taller then the low profiles I did installed.
If I change the tires I will true the rims, they wobble a little.

The sparkplug shows a normal mixture, should I make it richer?


Any ideas and suggestions would really be appreciated.

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San Arthur in San Antonio, Texas
'58 R26 '76 R90S '94 R100GS/PD

schrader7032
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That speed seems a bit slow

That speed seems a bit slow to me. My R25/2 really feels pretty good at about 80kph...I think it would maintain that for a long time. What kind of gas mileage are you getting? As I said, I'm getting a somewhat low 50 mpg when others thing it should be more like 75-80. The spec sheets call for 70ish mpg for the R26.

The specs call for 3.25x18 tires front and rear. If the diameter were bigger on the 3.5 tires, then for any given engine RPM, you would actually be doing a faster ground speed...the engine might have trouble pulling that due to the increased torque. It could be that the larger diameter tires are cutting down on the top end speed. I would run stock tires...I'd also run stock filtration.

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Kurt in S.A.
'78 R100/7 '69 R69S '52 R25/2

Bruce Frey
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A 6/25 (4.16) rear gear is

A 6/25 (4.16) rear gear is standard solo and should deliver 128 kph which is just a bit under 80mph. However, with 5/26 (5.26) sidecar rear gears, top speed drops to 90 kph which is right at 56mph.

You can check it yourself by putting it in neutral and counting the driveshaft revolutions when you rotate the rear wheel by hand one revolution. Save your wife points for when you really need help;-). (I spent all day in my Houston garage putting my R12 back together. It was hot!)

Maybe a previous owner put in sidecar gears.

I'll guess your tire rolling diameter is 66cm (measure it x 3.1416) which gives a rolling circumference of about 2.07m. If you have a 6/25 and do 58mph (94kph), you are turning about (94000/60 = 1576m/min / 2.07 = 757 wheel rpm x 4.16 x 1.54 =) 4849 engine rpm. In this case you are definitely down on power.

Your rated horsepower is at 6400 rpm.

If you have sidecar gears, however, your rpm would be 6132. In this case you are right about where you should be.

Check it out.

Bruce

San Arthur
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Pi = 3.1415926535....

Thanks a lot to all of you for your answers, great suggestions and comments!

I'm a little concern about the top speed and will make some research on what I have on the bike. I’ll post the information latter.
I talked to my mechanic, Perry Bushong and he gave me some homework.
We order a new set of Heindenau 3.25- 18 tires, the profile is taller.
I don’t expect to gain a lot but anything counts, especially over a 1,200 mile trip.
I’m going to be counting the revolution with another method and checking the position of the speedo needle at 80 km/h against the GPS.

If I can reach 66 mph I’ll happy.

I would appreciate if any of the local R26 owners could ride with me to compare gears, final drive, etc. If you can, please pm me. I live in North Central San Antonio, Texas.

Since I don’t expect to be the fastest motorcycle around I better go in style.
I have never use my Davida “pudding bowl” helmet and aviator goggles for more than a few hours at a time. I know full face helmets are safer.
If any of you have used them in a long ride I would appreciate the input too.

Thanks

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San Arthur in San Antonio, Texas
'58 R26 '76 R90S '94 R100GS/PD

San Arthur
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Bad news, low psi

After a lot of investigation in the forum and other BMW forums, your great comments, suggestions and PM's I did a cylinder compression test and didn't get more then 80 psi.
To make a long story short tomorrow I'm towing Zenaida to Fort Worth to visit my mechanic.

I’ll let you know.

Thanks

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San Arthur in San Antonio, Texas
'58 R26 '76 R90S '94 R100GS/PD

schrader7032
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What should pressure be? Did

What should pressure be? Did you do it correctly? The carb should be off the engine or at least you need to roll the throttle completely open and remove the air cleaner. The bike should ideally be warm to get the best reading. Duane Ausherman has directions on how to kick the engine over to be sure and get the proper situation for taking a reading.

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Kurt in S.A.
'78 R100/7 '69 R69S '52 R25/2

San Arthur
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Zenaida in Fort Worth

Thanks Kurt, we warm the engine, opened the throttle and only got 90 psi.
We took the tank off to adjust the valves but in the process we found a bad wheel bearing and a broken spoke that need to be fix.
I took the carb off, and only got 80psi with a cold engine.

I bought Zenaida in Mexico City almost 21 years ago.
Every time we open or work on a new component we discovered the ingenuity used by previous "mechanics" forced to work without original parts.
Many parts inside Zenaida were machined or transplanted form other motorcycles, not always BMW.
My mechanic says that there is a possibility the the piston belongs to another model. He will measure it against the other R26 he has at the shop.
We couldn't find any signs of a sick engine, everything, but the compression checks.
He suspects the cylinder might be shorter.
Is this possible, what do you think.

Here is Zenaida on her way to Fort Worth

How many Dos Equis you need to take the wheel off??

I hate and love my old bikes!

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San Arthur in San Antonio, Texas
'58 R26 '76 R90S '94 R100GS/PD

San Arthur
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Low compression piston

Was there such a thing as a low compression engine for low quality gas countries?

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San Arthur in San Antonio, Texas
'58 R26 '76 R90S '94 R100GS/PD

San Arthur
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Zenaida is back

Perry brought Zenaida back from Fort Worth but it was too late for a test run.
He didn't find anything wrong with the cylinder measurements, he cleared the air flow which was obstructed by the filter box hose.
New set of spokes in the back, and balance of both wheels, new tires, and fix both wheel bearings.

Hes professional opinion is that I have a side car final drive set.

I'll test drive it in a few minutes and will post my impressions. I'm thinking of bringing the R90S out of retirement, just in case.

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San Arthur in San Antonio, Texas
'58 R26 '76 R90S '94 R100GS/PD

schrader7032
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You mentioned that the final

You mentioned that the final drive was 4.16...that should be a 25/6 stamped on the drive...that's a solo drive. A sidecar final drive would be 26/5 or a 5.20 ratio.

The only way to know for sure is to manually count the number of driveshaft turns versus the number of rear wheel rotations.

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Kurt in S.A.
'78 R100/7 '69 R69S '52 R25/2

Bruce Frey
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Why would you ever retire an

Why would you ever retire an R 90s?

Bruce

San Arthur
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A little frustrated

I did Kurt and I get 4.16 every time.

This time around I got easier to 60 mph, with the air filter on.

Rings and valves were checked again and everything looks ok.
I'll check the compression again tomorrow.
I'm thinking about asking for a second opinion.
Kurt, are you familiar with a mechanic in the area?

Thanks

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San Arthur in San Antonio, Texas
'58 R26 '76 R90S '94 R100GS/PD

San Arthur
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R90S

Bruce Frey wrote:

Why would you ever retire an R 90s?

Bruce

Bruce Frey wrote:

Why would you ever retire an R 90s?

Bruce

Bruce Frey wrote:

Why would you ever retire an R 90s?

Bruce

Is an interesting question.
I worked on the R90S for several years until I left it in a great riding condition, next on the list was the original silver smoke paint.
By then I found another motorcycle that needed lots of work and attention.
Since my garage is small I moved the R90S to the corner and stop using it.

I guess I lost interest.

I never thought about it......

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San Arthur in San Antonio, Texas
'58 R26 '76 R90S '94 R100GS/PD

schrader7032
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Local Mechanic

san-arthur wrote:

I'm thinking about asking for a second opinion.
Kurt, are you familiar with a mechanic in the area?

Not for anything this vintage. I suppose Alamo BMW might be a consideration. Everytime I stop in there, I always check the shop area for anything old they're working on. They were doing a complete restoration of an R50/2 or R60/2 engine. I've seen quite a few Airheads run through the shop.

What are you interested in an opinion on? I have a few tools and gages and could provide some input. Is it that you can't get past 60mph? On my R25/2, I did the best I could to statically time the bike at idle but never could figure out where it was timed at full advance. Turns out my flywheel doesn't have a full advance mark, so I had to put a self-made degree wheel on the engine and figure it out myself. Turns out I was way retarded and wasn't getting to full advance. I went through the process of tweaking the timing so that I was getting closer to proper timing at full speed. Maybe that's something you need to confirm.

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Kurt in S.A.
'78 R100/7 '69 R69S '52 R25/2

San Arthur
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Curiosity, obsession or need for speed?

Thanks for your kind offer, I run out of ideas and my mechanical ingenuity reached its single cylinder limit.

You can’t imagine how much you have helped me so far, I really appreciate it.

I just talked to Vech and he also mentioned to check the timing at full advance; and to check the silencer since it might be restricting the exhaust. I’m going to make a loud run latter tonight!

I also remembered a recommendation by Skip Macorro from Motodiscovery.com about a great mechanic in the area, Carl Santora. As a matter of fact he read my posts and sent me a PM.

I’ll be out of town for the Memorial day weekend and will visit Kermit to following, thanks for the tip.

I’m curios to find out why, if everything seems ok, it can’t go over 60 mph?

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San Arthur in San Antonio, Texas
'58 R26 '76 R90S '94 R100GS/PD

schrader7032
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Sent a PM.

Sent a PM.

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Kurt in S.A.
'78 R100/7 '69 R69S '52 R25/2

San Arthur
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Intermission over, back on the trip planning.

I went to Mexico to pick up my car after a few years in storage.
I took the car to the mechanic to prep it for the drive back unfortunately we detected a serious case of rust.
To make a long story short, my car will stay in Mexico for repairs.

I know this is not a car forum but I needed to share that I feel terrible for neglecting my car so much.

Back to trip!!
Vech was kind enough to make suggestions about the replacement parts I'm taking to the trip and I just received them.
Finally the heat is subsiding and I'll road test the bike this week.

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San Arthur in San Antonio, Texas
'58 R26 '76 R90S '94 R100GS/PD

San Arthur
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Silencer off!

I have a question:

I took the silencer off the bike to do a test run without it.
Will I damage the engine in any way?

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San Arthur in San Antonio, Texas
'58 R26 '76 R90S '94 R100GS/PD

Bruce Frey
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A few miles with no silencer

A few miles with no silencer certainly won't be a problem. Take a look at the plug before and after and note any color change.

Running without an air cleaner or silencer for a prolonged period often requires jet size or needle height adjustment.

Bruce

San Arthur
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San Antonio, TX
Joined: 04/22/2007
Posts: 331
A lot of noise but no gain!

I run it without the silencer but I didn't gain any more speed.
These are the pictures of the plugs after the run.

After a time at full throttle the engine begins to hesitate a little. Should I check the timing? It does not do it when cold or at the beginning of the run.

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San Arthur in San Antonio, Texas
'58 R26 '76 R90S '94 R100GS/PD

Bruce Frey
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Texas Hill Country, USA
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I think the plug looks

I think the plug looks similar (the lighting is different) in the before and after photos and looks similar to your earlier photos. It looks slightly fouled and I might try a plug one range hotter, but that is a minor point.

By all means, check your full advance timing, but I don't think that is your problem.

We know that:
1. top speed is low by 15-20 mph
2. compression readings are significantly lower than expected (I think 115-125 is right range for a healthy engine)

To me, those are probably related issues.

Things that typically cause low compression:
1. valves not seating correctly (assuming correct adjustment)
2. rings not sealing properly due to wear or mis-boring
The only way to determine the cause is to do a leakage test (see recent thread in classic section about equipment to do this).

Other things I can think of that would cause low compression would be:
1. very thick cylinder base gasket
2. incorrect piston/connecting rod/head

Other possibilities:
In looking at the progression from the R25 (12 hp, 95 kph) to the R26 (15 hp, 128 kph), we see that the compression ratio increased from 6.5/1 to 7.5/1 and that the carbs went from 22mm to 26mm. Part of the speed difference can be attributed to the change in rear drive ratios (4.5/1 to 6.16/1), but the horsepower increase is due to improvements in compression and carburation.

We know your compression is down, but what carb do you have? You should have a Bing 1/26/46.

Bruce

San Arthur
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R26 or R90S

Thanks Bruce!
I’ll check the carburetor as soon as I get home from work.

My mechanic attributes the low top end speed to side car gearing, but I checked against all the information available and as far as I can tell I have solo gears and ratios.
He checked the engine again, the cylinder is at the very top and in great condition, rings and everything else checks fine. He told me the compression was fine at 100 psi for these sorts of machines.

Obviously I wouldn’t have notice any difference if it wouldn’t be for the forum and all your great comments and suggestions.
I sent a pm to a local mechanic but he has not answer.

This is supposed to be a singles ride and the R90S would be out of place, but all the other riders were kind enough to look the other way and aloud the twin to ride along.

So, what do you think, should I go ahead with and ride a slow R26, will I end up destroying the engine in the process?

Should I prep the R90S for the trip?

Saludos

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San Arthur in San Antonio, Texas
'58 R26 '76 R90S '94 R100GS/PD

San Arthur
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San Antonio, TX
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Bing

Bruce my carb is a 1/26/79.

What does 79 stands for?

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San Arthur in San Antonio, Texas
'58 R26 '76 R90S '94 R100GS/PD

schrader7032
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San Antonio, TX
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Arturo - The 79 is a model

Arturo -

The 79 is a model designation, so to speak. It's a 26mm carb which is the correct throat size. But the 79 was meant to be used with an R27. It appears that the jets and internal settings are the same as for a typical R26 carb (numbers 46, 52, 55) with one exception. The R26 settings calls for the needle clip position 3 while the R27 carb settings calls for position 2. Position 2 is leaner than 3. But top end speed is controlled by the main jet and the numbers for the two carbs is the same. I assume that a 120 main jet for one carb is the same part for the other carb.

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Kurt in S.A.
'78 R100/7 '69 R69S '52 R25/2

Dave Reina
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In regards to the low top

In regards to the low top speed, is it possible that the throttle is not adjusted properly and isn't opening the carb slide all the way? I've had a problem like this on an old car with a throttle cable.
Dave

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San Arthur
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In need of suggestions and ideas!

Thanks Kurt!

Today I had a visit from Kurt, he was very kind to give me a hand trouble shooting the possible causes of my low top speed.
We checked the carb jets, the timming, the compression and test for leaks.
We got 30% of leak in the read out and lots of air comming through the oil screw cap.

We concluded the beer was cold enough, and
we suspect the rings are bad and that is the reason for the poor performance and low top speed.  
Since the ride will start the 1st of October, I won't have time enough to redo the engine and break it in. 

Other than the low top speed, if I decided to make the 1300 mile ride, will I destroy the engine?
Should I go ahead and ride the R26?  Please let me know what you think!
What should I do? Any ideas?

PD All work was done before the beer drinking!

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San Arthur in San Antonio, Texas
'58 R26 '76 R90S '94 R100GS/PD

San Arthur
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Thanks for your suggestion!

Dave, we checked the opening and it's all clear.
We suspect of a sick engine.

Thanks
Arturo

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San Arthur in San Antonio, Texas
'58 R26 '76 R90S '94 R100GS/PD

schrader7032
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Arturo - Not a bad suggestion

Arturo -

Not a bad suggestion to see if the slide comes all the way up. We had the carb off but didn't try that while we were looking at it. It's probably OK, but worth checking.

Another occurred to me... We discussed the typical procedures for break-in and that the long distances to Big Bend might not be the best way to break the rings in. Well, you could have the rings put in, do the initial break-in as I suggested, get as many miles on the bike before your trip, and then just go for it. It might not be the best way, but probably the worst you would have to do is redo the rings with a proper break-in after you got back. Or maybe you can just see how the bike runs over the next few years and decide then if another set of rings would be required. If you could get 100-150 miles in town before you set out on your trip, that might work out OK.

Certainly, going with new rings would let you definitively confirm that your performance was back.

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'78 R100/7 '69 R69S '52 R25/2

San Arthur
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Time off

Kurt, I did check the throttle in Fort Worth and the slide opens fully, thanks for your kind suggestions.

I talked to my mechanic and I asked him about his findings on the compression test and if he did a leak test, also asked about the rings, etc. The connection was terrible and only understood half.

He siad he checked and didn't think the rings were bad and he mentioned, (I didn't ask and I will ask why he didn't mention it before), something about odd measurements in the push-roads, that this could be the reason of the low power out put.
He will collect the bike next weekend and take Zenaida back to Fort Worth to fix the problem.

I don't think the valves are the culprit and I only hope he solves the problem and that he delivers the bike back on time, I need it in San Antonio by September 29!!! In the meantime I will bring the R90S back home, just in case. I trsut my mechanic 100%

This is getting good.

What do you think? Will I stay in the Vintage Forum reporting on Zenaida's trip or will I move to the Classic forum with the R90S?

Anyway, since my wife is riding too, we went for a short ride to practice a little and test some new gear.

We had lunch at the Alamo Springs General Store, on the Old San Antonio Rd or Old No. 9.

Is a great restaurant, you should visit.

I'll report as soon as I get the R90S back from storage.

Waiting to hear your comments and opinions!

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San Arthur in San Antonio, Texas
'58 R26 '76 R90S '94 R100GS/PD

schrader7032
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San Antonio, TX
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On a previous post, you

On a previous post, you said:

Quote:

Perry brought Zenaida back from Fort Worth but it was too late for a test run.
He didn't find anything wrong with the cylinder measurements...

But now you think he's still wondering about some other measurements?

I would certainly like to hear the results of his leakdown test. Admittedly, when we did it, the bike was not as warm as it should have been. But it was somewhat warm and to have >20% leakage at that point didn't sound good.

As for checking the length of the rods, this might be something that could be done without taking the cylinder apart. You would need a known good R26 and a way of measuring the height the piston reaches through the spark plug hole. So, measure the known good R26 and your bike and compare how far the piston comes out. If there's a substantial difference, then that could be something.

I still didn't like the leakage we identified...

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Kurt in S.A.
'78 R100/7 '69 R69S '52 R25/2

San Arthur
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I don't like the leak either!

At that time we thought the piston was smaller (shorter) or from another model and maybe was not compressing at its fullest or maybe was changed in Mexico to compensate for bad gasoline.
He did some measurement and it’s the right size and is going all the way up.

Push Roads
If the length of the push rods is off, would this affect compression?

Leak test
But what about the big air leak through the rings you mentioned, the oil cap moved!

I’m frustrated… But I won’t give up, Zenaida will be fixed.

Again thanks for your pointers and your help. Now I’m certain the engine is sick.

I have a question for you, with bad rings, shouldn't Zenaida be blowing blue smoke or have an excessive oil consumption?

I haven't notice any smoke and the oil level has remain in place.

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San Arthur in San Antonio, Texas
'58 R26 '76 R90S '94 R100GS/PD

schrader7032
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Good point...with a

Good point...with a significant leakage past the rings, I would agree that there would be smoke and oil usage. I'm not sure what kind of history and miles you have on the bike, so can't really say. There should be an engine breather system that helps equalize the air inside the engine case when the pistons travel from TDC towards BDC. My R25/2 has a small hole where the pipe is supposed to go...it's on the left front of the engine near the edge of the oil pan. Do you have such a pipe? That could be where the smoke is coming out. But certainly, if you are using oil at a great rate, that would show up after say 1000-2000 miles.

Pushrods probably could affect the compression; short rods would mean that the valves don't open and close enough to allow a full load of air and gas, thus resulting poor and weak combustion. Should be easy enough to verify.

Maybe the piston is the right size (diameter) but what if it were not the right shape? If it is not the right shape, it could result in low compression.

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Kurt in S.A.
'78 R100/7 '69 R69S '52 R25/2

Bruce Frey
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You had a busy

You had a busy weekend!

Arturo,

In your very first post, you indicated that the "engine and gearbox were recently overhauled." How many miles since the overhaul?

Were any of the compression tests done with a hot engine? If not, the results will probably be low. The 115-125 readings I mentioned are somewhat anecdotal (there is not a reliable formula that I know of) from discussions on the /2 Group for engines with a 7.5 compression ratio (i.e, R50/2 & R60/2). Your spark plug does look a little fouled and it is hard to see smoke unless you are following behind, so you might be burning a bit.

Pushrod length should not affect compression assuming you are able to adjust the valves correctly.

I don't think you will damage your engine on a long ride. If you are part of a group that rides at a similar pace it should not be a problem, although I hate being the slowest rider. A ride where you are spending a lot of time at or near wide open throttle is not the best way to break in rings, although I agree with Kurt that the first few miles are the most important.

The best advice I can give is to call Vech at Benchmark works and see what he thinks. He has forgotten more about these machines than most of us will ever know.

In any case, however, get your R90S back in action!

Bruce

San Arthur
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San Antonio, TX
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Lilo is home!

Lilo is short for Liselotte my 1976 R90S.

She was in storage and took me some effort the bring her back home.
She is braking strange, but I will take this to the classic forum.
I'll have her ready in case I leave the R26 behind.

Don't adjust your picture settings, she is yellow and I will write the whole story in the Classic Forum.

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San Arthur in San Antonio, Texas
'58 R26 '76 R90S '94 R100GS/PD

San Arthur
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San Antonio, TX
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The R26 is going!

After a lot of thought and consideration, and a long ride on my R90S I decided to take Zenaida along for the Big Bend ride next week.

Without a doubt riding a powerful R90S is a great pleasure, but riding the R26 will be an adventure.

I didn't have time to take it back to Fort Worth for my mechanic's latest attempt to solve the low performance problem and the local mechanic never call back to set up an appointment.
He told me he did check the cylinder, piston and rings for clearances and everything looked in order.
I don't know what to think, or maybe I do...


Zenaida on her way to Vanderpool!

All the way from San Antonio, Hwy 16 was packed with motorcycles and slow HD's.

I will post an picture of the equipment and parts for the ride in the following days. Thanks for reading.

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San Arthur in San Antonio, Texas
'58 R26 '76 R90S '94 R100GS/PD

schrader7032
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San Antonio, TX
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Good luck! Did you bring a

Good luck! Did you bring a pillow? You'll need that to place on the tank so you can lie down to get an extra 5 mph!!

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Kurt in S.A.
'78 R100/7 '69 R69S '52 R25/2

San Arthur
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San Antonio, TX
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Two days left for the ride!

schrader7032 wrote:

Good luck! Did you bring a pillow? You'll need that to place on the tank so you can lie down to get an extra 5 mph!!

Very funny, you made me laugh, thanks!

I manage to burn my wife's clutch, I forgot to adjust the cable after installing a new set of levers to accommodate her small hands.
I'll pick her bike from the dealer on my way to Vanderpool.

I'll start posting from the road.

Wish us luck!

Arturo

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San Arthur in San Antonio, Texas
'58 R26 '76 R90S '94 R100GS/PD

San Arthur
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San Antonio, TX
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Waiting for my wife

I'm ready, just waiting for my wife she still at work

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San Arthur in San Antonio, Texas
'58 R26 '76 R90S '94 R100GS/PD

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