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Thoughts on suitability of a r100s for sidecaring
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Posted 10/15/2003 8:38 PM (#1164)
Subject: Thoughts on suitability of a r100s for sidecaring


I just finished a sidecar training course in Virginia, loved it and now shopping for a bike to attach a rig to. I've found a BMW '77 r100s that I like and would likely attach a velorex for starters. Before I make the purchase wanted to see if there was anyone with experiences with this or a similar combo.



Edited by Wes 10/15/2003 8:39 PM
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Hack'n
Posted 10/15/2003 9:09 PM (#1166 - in reply to #1164)
Subject: RE: Thoughts on suitability of a r100s for sidecaring



Expert

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Check out the '77 R100/560 in Albums/Hack'ns Hacks. Dave Hough might still have his R100/URAL rig which he's plied around the country, on and off road, for years. He's been pretty happy with his rig. Drop him a message, he signs on as pmdave. The R100s are a popular sidecar platform although they take a little more tweaking due to the lack of a full perimeter frame. Attaching sub-frames are easily fabricated or purchased though.
I say, go for it, if the value is there and the price is right.
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Posted 10/17/2003 1:43 PM (#1178 - in reply to #1164)
Subject: RE: Thoughts on suitability of a r100s for sidecaring


I have a 1978 R100/7 with an unknown brand sidecar that is about the same size as a Velorex, and it has been a good & fun rig. I don't think I'd want to run it all day at freeway speeds, but it would likely do it.

This rig has a leading link front end, and after replacing all of the shocks it became a smooth & comfortable rig. Have no experience with this rig with standard forks, so can't comment on how much improvement the leading link is.

Have moved on to a GL1500 with Champion hack... much easier for my wife to enter/exit, so the Beemer has been in storage for the past two years and is for sale.

Good luck on your search.
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Posted 10/17/2003 10:56 PM (#1180 - in reply to #1164)
Subject: RE: Thoughts on suitability of a r100s for sidecaring


Wes, I've sent you a private message on the location of my "old" R100/Ural outfit, which is still running regularly.The "old" BMW airhead R100 makes a pretty good sidecar puller. Of course, it needs some tinkering, and also a little TLC to keep it ticking. I suggest a subframe, or at least some clever reinforcing of mounts and the main frame. You can obtain a subframe from Dauntless Motors. The Velorex is adequate for attaching to an R100, although I would suggest making up your own mounting struts rather than trying to use the Velorex struts and connectors.
I highly recommend a leading link front end, especially with the S narrow bars. I'd suggest a "bare" R100 t rather than s. I've used the Unit LL myself, and it's like "power steering". However the Unit LL uses two independent downtubes, and I think it benefits from a fork brace between the two upper shock mounts. The Unit fork allows use of the stock ATE calipers, or better yet, find a pair of Brembos from a later model R100, and get the Unit LL with Brembo mounts. The stock discs will work, but the EBC floating rotors are better.
Stiffer rear shock springs are advised, along with a rear drive swap to one with an 11/37 gear ratio, to spin the engine up a bit. This is a bolt-on swap, assuming the double sided swingarm. The stock BMW wheels will suffice, although you should expect the aluminum hubs to loosen around the bearings, and an eventual repair with a steel insert.
Mount with 9 in. of sidecar wheel lead, and the sidecar far enough from the bike to allow RH valve cover removal. With the Velorex, I'd suggest 5/8 to 3/4 in. toe in. Lean the bike out away from the car enough to make steering neutral.
The R100 motors are relatively reliable, but need frequent exhaust valve adjustment to prevent valve seat recession. Valve adjustments are easy, if you allow space between the RH head and SC frame. Adjusting the valves every 1,000 mi or so isn't too frequent. If the engine won't idle after a fast run, that's a symptom the exhaust valves are tight, and need IMMEDIATE adjustment. For additional info on airheads, consult www.airheads.org.
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