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caker
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VBMWMO #8161
Philadelphia area (NJ)
Joined: 11/12/2011
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I have an opportunity to purchase an alleged 1934 R4 series 3, but it's located far away and I can't go visit it. The seller is a good guy with whom I've done business with before. However, I have a few concerns about the bike and was hoping to get your opinion...

The motor has no stamp on it in the usual place below the cylinder on the right side. In fact, I can't see any markings on the case in any of the photos.

The front frame brace has obviously been relocated at some point in its history. Look at the extra holes in the front frames. No longer riveted, I can only presume this was relocated to accept a different motor at some point?

So that brings the engine into question. Could this be an EMW R35 engine? Are there any tell-tale signs that distinguish an R4 engine vs an R35?

What is up with the bulbous U-joint thing in the drive shaft? I've never seen that before.

The carb looks correct. The controls look period.

I'd appreciate any opinions!

Thanks,
-Chris

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schrader7032
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VBMWMO #7032
San Antonio, TX
Joined: 10/27/2006
Posts: 6327
I've only seen one R4 before,

I've only seen one R4 before, at Vech's shop...he's rebuilding a Series 1. He posted some of his pictures on the MOA forum. His engine is quite different than yours in terms of the battery, generator, etc. His u-joint looks different, too.

It does like like the Series 3 or it could be a late series R4 (like Series 5) or possibly an R35...BMW made them for a while until the war resulted in continued production of the Eisenach version. The frame suggests an R4 and the range of the number is somewhere in the early to middle of the range of frame numbers - 80001 to 95280.

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

caker
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VBMWMO #8161
Philadelphia area (NJ)
Joined: 11/12/2011
Posts: 112
I also saw Vech's series 1 R4

I also saw Vech's series 1 R4 at his open house this past April but it was in the early stages. The weekend I was there my R4 was delivered back at my house - so I had a lot to look forward to on my 1100 mile ride back to Jersey. Smile The engine case is definitely different on the series 1...

Attached to this post are a few pictures. Pic #1 shows Vech's R4 with something very similar on the drive shaft. His following shots (pic #2 and #3) show something different, however, and I doubt the bulbous thing is inside there - it those look way more like a typical rubber disk. Pictures #4, #5 and #6 are of my [alleged] 1936 series 5 R4 and show clearly the more typical config.

Actually, here is a quote from Vech on that very post:

In this shot, you can see the gearbox is now installed. Notice the weird cross connection on the back of the output shaft. This is the hardy joint and instead of being a rubber disk, it is unlike any other BMW drive shaft joint. The end of the drive shaft, which as two cam like lobes, inserts into the cross, and two hardened pistons rest on the low sides of the lobes. Behind each hardened piston is two coil springs. There are two "pipe caps" for lack of a better description, that, when screwed into the cross, put pressure on the springs, which in turn puts pressure on the pistons. This mechanical arrangement acts to take up drive line shock, from acceleration and deceleration. There is also a polished, nickel plated sheet metal cover on the drive shaft, that covers this whole assembly, so it does not eat a hole in your ankle while riding. Very strange, but mechanically sound, way of getting the job done.

So, at least seeing it in Vech's picture and his description means it's not something totally whacky.

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schrader7032
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VBMWMO #7032
San Antonio, TX
Joined: 10/27/2006
Posts: 6327
I have only been seeing the

I have only been seeing the round covering and missed what Vech said about it covering the knobby internal connection. In the first picture you show of Vech's build, you can see the housing before the round covering surrounds it.

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

caker
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VBMWMO #8161
Philadelphia area (NJ)
Joined: 11/12/2011
Posts: 112
I inquired to the seller

I inquired to the seller about closeup shots of the engine's and frame's stampings, and today received these. The engine stampings are wonky, but you can see faint BMW markings which is encouraging. But what concerns me more is this: Compare the original engine photos from my first post. You can clearly see there are no markings on the engine. Or do you think it's just generation loss and/or jpeg compression making it appear there are no markings on the pics from a few weeks ago? I don't want to believe this guy stamped the bike in the meantime.

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schrader7032
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VBMWMO #7032
San Antonio, TX
Joined: 10/27/2006
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It appears that he used some

It appears that he used some white paint or marker to enhance the numbers for the photos. However, after blowing up the one image of the right side of the engine, I'm hard pressed to say there were traces of a number there. I would have thought they would at least be somewhat visible or an indication of a discontinuity to suggest numbering.

Sort of the same with the frame number, but given the black color of the frame, once I zoom in, it starts to be come less clear what is really there...or not.

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

beemererik
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VBMWMO #5720
Joined: 10/27/2006
Posts: 66
There should also be a serial

There should also be a serial number in the head. Typically right above where the push rod tubes, oil feed and vent tube enter it.

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Darryl.Richman
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VBMWMO #6285
Surf City, USA (Santa Cruz, CA)
Joined: 10/27/2006
Posts: 2183
With the multiple odd

With the multiple odd stampings for some of the numbers, like the 5 in the case stamp, the 2/4 in the cylinder stamp and the two different 3s in the frame stamp, I would say that both numbers are home made.

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beemererik
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VBMWMO #5720
Joined: 10/27/2006
Posts: 66
I have attached photos of the

I have attached photos of the serial numbers off of my 1935 Series 4 R4 project. The engine and head match. The cylinder is slightly lower in number.

The size of the numbers on the cylinder and engine are slightly different with the engine being larger. The numbers on your bike look to be the same and the stamping is not clean which makes me wonder...

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beemererik
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VBMWMO #5720
Joined: 10/27/2006
Posts: 66
I have attached a photo off

I have attached a photo off of the frame of my R4. BMW Archives has confirmed everything matches except the cylinder. Notice the D at the end.

I also have a 1935 R2 series 4. The original frame was damaged and the bike has a 1932 frame. Here is a link to some photos.

http://www.vintagebmw.org/v7/node/6533

Notice the original 1932 SN, and the new stamping so the frame number matched the head badge.

-Erik

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Honboy1
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Beecher, Il USA
Joined: 12/15/2013
Posts: 11
Update?

caker wrote:

I have an opportunity to purchase an alleged 1934 R4 series 3, but it's located far away and I can't go visit it. The seller is a good guy with whom I've done business with before. However, I have a few concerns about the bike and was hoping to get your opinion...

The motor has no stamp on it in the usual place below the cylinder on the right side. In fact, I can't see any markings on the case in any of the photos.

The front frame brace has obviously been relocated at some point in its history. Look at the extra holes in the front frames. No longer riveted, I can only presume this was relocated to accept a different motor at some point?

So that brings the engine into question. Could this be an EMW R35 engine? Are there any tell-tale signs that distinguish an R4 engine vs an R35?

What is up with the bulbous U-joint thing in the drive shaft? I've never seen that before.

The carb looks correct. The controls look period.

I'd appreciate any opinions!

Thanks,
-Chris

Did you ever find out if this bike was legit? I have been looking at this bike and know it would be a safe transaction. The only down side is I can't be for certain that it is authentic. Here is the website it is listed on now.

http://www.brettibrothers.com/

By the way, I'm new to this site.. Hello, form Chicago!

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Honboy1

caker
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VBMWMO #8161
Philadelphia area (NJ)
Joined: 11/12/2011
Posts: 112
It's now on eBay.

It's now on eBay. http://www.ebay.com/itm/291211535295

-Chris

DFoote
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VBMWMO #8655
Joined: 01/21/2014
Posts: 40
Who bought it?

Did anyone here buy it?

Don in Dallas

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58 R69 59 R50 63 R50/2
71 Triumph T100C

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