Cars of NIHON


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BMW K100 and 75S





           ↑  Click to go to my 3,000km K100RS PAGE  ↑


                                             NOT PERFECT, BUT CLOSE..... K series BMW's are not easily equaled for the quality of design, materials and build 

My collection of K Bikes were imported by me from Japan These machines "ran out of time" well before they had any serious use. Vehicle life is pretty much a function of limited road time in Japan. They were just parked in a dark corner for want of anything better to do with them, when owner interest evaporated over a cold winter, or vehicle reg requirements became so demanding they were taken off the roads....

NON USE creates very typical problems in the K bike.With time and experience I have risen to become a master in reviving old K bikes.... Getting them running again has become almost a full time hobby.

Universally the grease in the steering head dries out after a long time off the road. What remains looks like solidified candle wax,requiring dropping the forks to clean and re lube. It is a straightforward job that takes me a full day... certainly not easy or quick.

I conclude that BMW's choice of lubricants are poor, as I don't see this problem with any other make I have imported ?

The frame paint is thin...  no undercoating or priming is used on the frames and the atom thin finish can quickly weather.

I usually remove all fittings from the frame from the rear of the engine back ( which is easily done) and rub down and repaint the frame using quality undercoat and top coats.

Fuel pumps and fuel associated rubber often fail to make the distance, and lately alcohol in petrol is just killing all the rubber components in the fuel system. 

FUEL PUMPS are the first thing to suffer when a K bike is unused for a year or two.  The original Bosch pumps have come down in price, but are still expensive compared to automotive pumps.  The Bosch pumps operate at 45psi and have a delivery rate of about 50 litres per hour.  It's very easy to find pumps with equivalent pressure, but most have a delivery rate of 150 to 300 LphA good equivalent pump is a VDO unit to suit early injected Ford Falcons EA/EB... for sale on Ebay for $65. This is a high quality pump with a flow rate of 150Lph. It will certainly draw more amps than the standard pump, but they have been well trialled here in Australia and  work perfectly in the K's.

Small VDO pumps were used as well as the more typical Bosch unit in K75's and 100's.... and the BMW mountings for the VDO work with the Ford pump... .    The VDO pump can be used with the wider BMW anti vibration mounting by gutting the old Bosch pump and wedge the new smaller pump in the original Bosch casing..hence you can use the original in tank mountings but care should be used in selecting a rubber that isn't going to dissolve in what passes for petrol these days.  Alcohol resistant rubber mounting sleeves can be purchased from Eurospares in Denver

Same goes for pressure regulators... you can get new generic 40psi ones for very reasonable amounts on Ebay..or just buy a whole used throttle body set up with the regulator for $40 -$80 from US Ebay.  

Series 1 K100's are more prone to issues with below tank fuel hardware...these early K bikes returned fuel straight to the base of the tank through a basic ball valve... known in official circles as the "Fuel Tank Check Valve"....I don't think they work at all once the bike has aged.  They are there to stop petrol running back into the injectors when the bike is shut down...over time the valve would leak aged crud from the tank, often mixed with water that enters the tank from the poorly designed tank cap seal on the pre 86 models...straight into the fuel rail, injectors and pressure regulator. Rots them out nicely.... Can also let petrol into the engine through a leaky injector...Doesn't happen on the series 2 models as the return fuel exits at the very top of the tank...... another reason why a purchaser should always pay more for a series 2 K.

Very early K100RS like my own 83-84 were hand assembled by individual teams of factory techs... later models were production line jobs assembled by immigrant workers. I have had a couple of early K's and they do stand out as being rather special... engines are typically a bit more rattly than later series 2's probably due to the different output shaft design.

Most used K100's for sale on Ebay/Gumtree are early series 1's... 1984 to '86. Many sellers quote incorrect build dates. As a visual guide series 1's have massive clunky solid triangular front footpeg mounting plate with large rubber mountings to the frame. Very early S1 bikes have no grab bars on the rear seat pod...( see my K100 14K for sale) Series 2 bikes(see my 3000km K) have an elegant stylised and much lighter footpeg plate with no rubber mounting bushes...this about the only visual difference between the two. Series 2 are much revised and certainly the superior.... having said that the 1's do go forever despite some design issues.

Having replaced the pump and the bike is still not firing, the next stop is the injectors... they often/always bind closed with dried fuel. To remove, disconnect fuel lines from the fuel rail, undo the two 10mm bolts securing it to the engine and use a jemmy bar or long screwdriver to lever the rail an end at a time away from the engine...the injectors will pop out..  unless the O rings that retain them have turned to rock..then you have to use a lubricant soaking with brake fluid ( not mineral oil as they will swell) and buy some new O rings at $1 ea

Remove them from the rail...just use a screwdriver to remove the metal securing wedge/clip. Use carb cleaner/acetone while running 12v through the terminals...they should start to click open and closed almost instantly or if not, leave them soaking in carb cleaner/acetone overnight. 

There are heroic stories on the web where it has taken days hooked up to frankenstein electronics jolting volts through them while they soak in exotic solutions held near boiling point before any life returns. Good fun.. just have a container of brake fluid handy (and a cup of tea) and give the O rings a wipe before you put it all together again.  I have given up entirely on a set of injectors as they were so choked with debris that there was no way I could get them flowing properly... 

The BMW K bike owners friend, the Ford Falcon has again come to the rescue by providing a cheap source of new injectors.. yes the injectors for EA to EL Falcons are said to fit perfectly..last time I looked 6 new VDO injectors for Falcon were $175 or $38 by the single each.   These flow 66% greater than the standard item. I have read a report where fitting these injectors results in more power and torque and flames up to 300mm long from the exhaust pipe..   FANTASTIC. You can get the O ring repair kit for Falcon injectors on Ebay cheap..should be the same as the K bike stuff but much cheaper.

I have fitted a set of Falcon injectors in my 1984 K100 and its running fine. The injectors are German made. A good substitute source of injectors is those fitted to the pre 1993 SAAB 900i 16 valve non turbo...They are correct for impedence, fuel pressure and the flow rate is quite close.. just a tad higher than the original. also the pressure regulator off this model can be used... Make sure its BOSCH as they also used LUCAS stuff on SAAB.

Don't use resistance (R) type plugs. Many of the k bikes I have owned had resistance plugs fitted...they run standard type plugs as the spark plug caps contain the resistance the ignition system requires. 

The early K bikes had a few issues, one annoying one was failure of the centre stand,, but one of the interesting positive things is they have a more robust radiator and more adventurous cam valve overlap than some of the later K's not to mention hand built quality in the very early ones.

PS.,. a lot of dirt settles around the injectors..use a vacuum cleaner to suck it away when you have the injectors out. If you don't you will send a small mountain of dirt straight into the engine when you put the injectors back in.  You'll stink of petrol for a month after all this.

K series BM's are very well supported for new parts. You can literally purchase new the smallest nut,bolt or washer on line... both from here in Australia or the US.

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MIRROR POD GLASS: BMW K100RS...here is a helpful link for replacing the glass in the pods http://www.motobrick.com/index.php?topic=1164.0


K75S  10,000Kms


Full toolkit and handbook, unmarked bike

Click on image for K75S Page

The K75S is the brilliant BM - no vibration,lean and powerful with K1 high performance engine specs. Totally underrated in its day.  BMW did not go out of their way to make a lot of noise about its existence.


                                              K100RS    14,000Kms


Built in the first months of  the introduction  of  the K, prior to big volume US production..BREMBO forks, tools still wrapped in brown paper....  barely used.    Showing off Hans Muths ( Suzuki Katana) beautiful "razor edge" styling E. I


              A65 Lightning..... For sale in the US for $8,000     NICE             

The BSA A65 

1962-1972 R.I.P

Lately character bikes such as the BSA A65 series are selling for as much as $16,000 here. Having spent most of a lifetime with oily old bikes for company I often feel pretty slack jawed when I see how much is asked for some classics...

More than the new price of the retro Honda CB1100, and more pointedly, to the purchase price of a modern and very highly regarded 800cc parallel twin equivalent, the BMW G800.

BSA A65's are certainly limited in number and have a load of character.. but really at these prices, wouldn't a classic Japanese model or BMW make a lot more sense.

The price of baby boomer period classic motorcycles has risen relentlessly over the past few years, with the BSA A65, Honda CB750 and Suzuki GT 750 triples coming immediately to mind as examples of this. In fact it seems that every monthly copy of motorcycle trader magazine sets a new record price for these machines. 

Both the A65 and later the BMW K100 were used in substantial numbers by the local Police Force in my berg.

We were well supplied with BSA 650 twins, thanks to the local Police force who used them in serious numbers.. right up to the final expiry of BSA.  According to a retired police officer I spoke to recently, their fleet of A65 Thunderbolts numbered around 140. They kept them in service well into the 1970's and it was obvious that the subsequent move to Honda and Suzuki 750's was a very painfull time for the cops..deep conservatism still hung on even in those times. Pity BSA couldn't even repay such brand loyalty by getting off its corporate arse and delivering a decent product in the later years....

I would estimate that around 600 A65's passed from the Police into private ownership here over the life of the model.

I can't recall ever seeing any BSA's here for new private sale... or any A65 model other than the Thunderbolt or the base A10..must have been a saturated market thanks to the SA Police.

The Police held regular auctions of the retired A65s, complete with UK Craven panniers, well chromed crash bars, windscreens and other goodies fitted. This was before we had a casino..so for many it was the only form of recreational legal gambling apart from the horses.....having a bid on an ex cop A65....there were plenty of duds apparently. 

Many hundreds would have found their way onto the local markets...all have since disappeared to who knows where?   I purchased a tidy but seized(lack of use) A65 for $100 in 1974 and another well used goer for about the same amount in 1978. My brother picked up a lightly accident damaged  oil in frame model ( final production year) A65 for about the same amount..  

It has been said that outright performance was about par with a early 70's 250 Jap two stroke...this is probably right, but the correct way to ride an A65 was within its comfort limit while giving the impression there was a whole lot more left..certainly not to engage in any undignified road combat with the lower echelons on their rice burners..  The cops would have been easily outrun by the R3 Yamahas, Suzuki Titans and Honda 450's of the day.. while as time went on, in their final days of use by the cops they were supposed to keep up with the bad guys on Z1 Kawasaki's.

They were very much character bikes, and in good condition..most impressive to behold in black, contrasted with lashings of high quality chrome plating... 

They did have their problems, that could try the patience of any owner...I mean Lucas electrics for a start... and the fuel tanks would crack and leak .. generally right after an expensive repaint. Contemporary owners probably have never experienced..living with mechanical vibration and the real possibility of having to deal with major mechanical issues and bits falling off.

The A65 had a short production life of about 10 years, and replaced a well regarded pre unit 650 (The BSA A10) twin, that carried on into modern times after a mechanical make over, under the Kawasaki banner for many further years as the W650.. and what a beast they were. I think the Western Australia Police used them.

The A65 introduced in January 1962 would not have looked out of place in 1954 by the style of construction of the Italian and German makes of the day.....

On the Left is a mid 50's build DKW RT 350 twin cylinder two stroke. It looks very much the same as the 1960's A65.

BSA did like to keep close to DKW... in fact they (eh hem) completely borrowed their design of the 125cc DKW... and called it the BSA Bantam... a very successful model, and saving on all that development R&D made it a good earner.

The DKW RT350 was quite advanced compared with the much later A65. The RT350 had a needle roller swing arm, 12V Bosch electrics, hydraulic brake, no vibration and the best suspension around.  Performance was probably as least as good as the early Thunderbolt. The emerging Japanese motorcycle industry was based on German machines such as DKW, NSU., Puch etc

The A65 engine design was probably satisfactory for 1962, and was in fact beefed up generally from the well regarded pre unit twin A10. 

Later performance increases proved how marginal the original design was.

To be very critical it could be said that apart from the cassette gearbox and short piston stroke, and AC generator, the design wouldn't have been out of place for the late 1930's... Sad to say there were probably numerous machines of the late 30's that were more reliable...  as the A65 model evolved in power output and engine stresses increased, it was clear to BSA that a major engine redesign was required... this never happened. 

Compared to a Triumph twin of the day, the short stroke gave it an advantage in that the wider bore allowed bigger valves and generally improved breathing, the single camshaft with its pushrods inside the cylinder barrel also resulted in a more oil tight engine. The Triumph was the stronger, more reliable of the two in the long run.  

The board of BSA for a great deal of its post war life, was dominated by accountant types, that to be very flattering may have had "expertise" in some other aspect of the vast industrial complex that BSA controlled, but not motorcycles...  it was said that most of them found motorcycles.. "NASTY"...  As the board had no understanding of the motorcycle industry or design,  this side of the business was managed by "consultants" and general managers in the final years.... who were just so called "management experts".. with no background in motorcycles.  Not surprising then that the business fell apart....  and that very little action was taken to remediate design faults in existing products, or quality control issues addressed.

Yes, a story as old as the corporate history of mankind...  and in the UK this sort of thing took down its car and motorcycle industry completely.  Failure to promote from the workshop floor, and blocking of new talent and ideas by jealous incumbents destroyed the industry.

Problems that  related to oil control, lack of oil filtering and pre ignition from erratic ignition control  resulted in holed pistons, big end failure and snapping con rods. The crank was supported by a bronze bush on the timing side, small amounts of wear here really hurt oil pressure, and on earlier models crankshaft whip would result in crazy ignition control. sending out a pure frenzy of sparks at random intervals ....and the crankshaft bush wore very quickly. 

Oil pumps were also prone to distortion, reducing oil pressure....... BSA 's reputation ended up in the gutter by the end of the 60's

BSA was understood to mean "Bastard Stopped Again" in the US and "Bits Stuck Anywhere" in other markets.

The A65 owner needs to know the state of said bearing and oil pump very well before participating in any prolonged spirited riding...

In the context of their era, particularly by the early 70's, the A65 had a pretty poor reputation..now that 40 years have passed and they are no longer referenced against Z1 Kawasakis..  they have a whole lot of timeless classic appeal..which doesn't relate to an expectation of total reliability..

The cops here eventually moved on to K100's around 1985.... and have stayed with BMW to this day.

All My K bikes have TOOL KITS

Daimler Benz V12 Powered KAWASAKI Ki-61 "Hein" fighter in background. You Tube link here


K100RS MK11  32,000Kms 

 Has BMW panniers, at 32,000Kms a barely  used solid RS.                                                                                 

K100RS MK11   3,900Kms  

  The least traveled K on the PLANET


Yamaha XJ750D  9,000Kms

Fuel injected/shaft drive/digital dash/ radio/ trip computer etc, Sounds like 1984 to me.. Based on Turbo XJ. Japan only, Top of the pile, hardly used  Obvious Craig Vetter based design fairing, These Yamaha air cooled, twin cam fours are a very good motor and FI adds 10% more HP

Has just had a starter relay replaced, and a new Airtex E8445 Injection Pump .Picked up a pair of brand spankers front indicator lenses courtesy of Ebay and the local dealer. Not sorted yet.

Honda VFR 400R  5,000Kms

VFR 400 was created to challenge Suzuki RG.

 Japan only... developed 62Hp and real torque.  To put this in perspective,the BSA 650  Lightning  was tuned to the point of exploding to knock out 49hp. These cost  more than the VFR 750's and should be considered as a Japanese motorcycle icon


                                                                        Feedback, queries on any bike featured or chat............    Email link HERE

NV 750  4,000Kms

 Honda NV750 Shadow, shaft drive cruiser. Not sold in Australia. Very high quality build..has a 2nd under seat fuel tank, with electric Mitsubishi fuel pump taking fuel to a couple of BIG CV carbs high above the motor. 3 valve head and 2 plugs per cylinder,digital ignition, liquid cooled...lot of technology trying hard look like a stone age air cooled thumper. The frame welds on this bike are better than my BMW's,  Honda's ( and Japanese bikes in general) of the 80's were really getting it all together regards design, quality and build..


                                                 CBR 750   14,000Kms


   Last of the in line 750's 

          CBR750 Hurricane... At 105hp it produces twice the hp of my old F1.Again these were a domestic Japan market bike only..  both are really fine Honda products.

Click for a link  to my CBR 750 page



  My Dads bikes...in the 1970's...  1,000cc Ariel Square 4, Honda CB 750 F1...later replaced by a Ducati Darmah ( fantastic) which in turn was replaced by a Ducati Pantah (I didn't like it)  and lastly a GS 850G Suzuki (GOOD).   The Ariel 1,000 cc Square Four gave me a taste for torque..and having working brakes on motorcycles... it was diabolical to stop. It was used a lot in the 15 years he had it, normally clocking up a couple of hundred kms on an average weekend run.  It was totally reliable, I can't recall it having any problems or requiring any repairs at all.. and didn't leak oil... not a drop... The only attention it got was annual oil changes of a straight 50 weight oil...MILDEF 50, a quality Golden Fleece product..The Mildef 50 had the density of drillers mud or half set cement when cold..there's probably still tins of it in his shed. The gear box on  the square four was filled with grease, not oil.  On a cold morning the poor old thing was flat out just pumping around the straight 50 oil and churning the cold grease in the gearbox... it quickly all thinned out once it had been running for 10 minutes or so. In the mid 1970's the Ariel was a newer bike than the Honda CB 750 F1 would be today. It was a valuable and rare bike in excellent condition, but then it was not considered a display museum piece too precious to run, and he really used it.. every weekend it would be sitting on 70-80 MPH for long periods on his usual run...   from Adelaide crossing over the Mt lofty Ranges and then north up to the open straight roads along the River Murray to Mannum.... then return to Adelaide over the ranges via Mt Pleasant. ...  He had to sell all his bikes after suffering a stroke quite a few years ago. All his riding companions are now gone and sadly Max has joined them

Vale Max...21/3/2013 84 years

The Honda CB 750F1 was a great bike, despite weighing as much as a Kawasaki 900. It was a Japanese domestic market model and was purchased in the packing crate for $1,500 from a local girl who had been living in Japan for a while, she had imported it along with a 750 triple Yamaha hoping for a profit. I had it for 10 years after I bought it from the old man when he moved on to the Ducati.. When I finally passed it on, it still looked like new, and was still starting Ok on its original 12 y.o. battery. CB 750The F1 developed 18% more power than a standard K750 of the era, and would make about 200Kph anytime it was asked of it.  I had an entirely satisfactory relationship with the Honda..... I entered a bidding war for a yellow one with 3,000kms on the clock late one night on Yahoo Japan, afraid I was trounced in the end..it was me and one other bidder. He was not going to give in and I retired at the $4,000 mark which let me tell you is going to be a whole lot more by the time it lands here.. I was not entirely unhappy as it was pleasing to know I wasn't the only fan.

Memorable Motorcycle: Honda CB750 F1

Memorable Motorcycle: Honda CB750 F1

Above : My SRX. click on image

SRX 600  Yamaha

      A few of the first models were sold new in Australia, but most people probably have never seen one -

I have never ridden a classic british single. I won't count my BSA C11 250.. like most BSA's my 1954 model was actually a 1920's design.. A lot of BSA products relied on good basic engineering put in place by the then chief engineer Val Page in the dark ages of the 1930's. (BSA management liked using 30 or 40 year old designs ) About the same time my C11 was new (1954)  BSA engineering department quietly created an amazingly sophisticated twin cam horizontal single of about 350cc that would run all day at 100MPH. The development engineers allowed a privateer to enter it in a race as a "special" but word got out it was a BSA and the shit hit the fan..The BSA board were most upset when they found out... The engineers were rewarded by almost getting the sack and that was the end of that development. The BSA board continued on with the very old fashioned C11 model, and in a short 15 years later BSA were finished.  

Things were not much better at any of the other large UK motorcycle manufacturers back then. On reflection the hay days of the pommy bikes was probably in the 1930's when there were many independent manufacturers. Later amalgamations of Ariel, BSA, Triumph, the AMC group and several well recorded meglomaniacs and chest beaters that came to power with it all...halted real progress in design diversity, and kept the best engineers and designs below the surface locked in the dungeons, never to be seen.  

Triumph 2nd level engineers had the trident completed ready to go into production in 1964. BSA flogged the A65 for its entire 10 year production life with a catastrophic weakness of the main bearing that could result in total engine destruction.... should have been revised entirely by year 2... The damage done to their reputation and sales !!  What were they thinking ?

THE performance BSA single cylinder machine was the 500 Gold Star. They developed 40hp at 7,000 rpm in their later editions. A rare machine of great distinction and quality, hand assembled and potent.

Yamaha also claim 40 hp for the SRX600 ( probable hp is around 36) at a much lower 5,700rpm... The Yamaha has an extra carburettor, an extra 100cc in capacity, a 4 valve head plus a balance shaft over the Gold Star BSA, but unlike the BSA you won't need $24,000 to buy one.

Photo : Wikipedia




 click on image above to go to the SRX page..........contact me for further info..

Link to a most amazing motorcycle hoard   http://dcclassiccycles.dynamitedave.com/graveyard.html