1967 BMW R69US

As I had mentioned when writing up the previous BMW, the company in Munich had foreshadowed the direction they where taking with the 1967-1969 model year BMW’s. For two years BMW put a new telescopic fork on their line-up, replacing the iconic to BMW Earles Forks which had been on the bikes since 1955. This 1968 R69S is given the designation R69US with the updated forks. To some BMW fans this just looks wrong, to others its an opportunity to get something special.

From the seller

OLDER MECHANICAL: THE ENTIRE ENGINE WAS OVERHAULED AT 89,000 MILES.  A RE-BUILT CRANKSHAFT (ED KORN) WAS INSTALLED, ALONG WITH SECOND OVERBORE PISTONS, AND A COMPLETE VALVE JOB WAS DONE.  THE TRANSMISSION WAS RE-BUILT AT 98,000 MILES.

IN THE INTEREST OF FULL DISCLOSURE, I DO WANT TO MAKE EVERYONE AWARE THAT THIS WORK WAS DONE 20-22 YEARS AGO, BUT THE BIKE HAS HAD LESS THAN 14,000 MILES PUT ON IT SINCE THAT WORK WAS DONE.  I DON’T KNOW IF THE SLINGERS HAVE BEEN DONE SINCE THEN.

Selling a motorcycle can be a very personal process. The way that the seller describes this motorcycle tells that this may have been a very difficult decision. The detail that the seller goes into in describing the history and condition of the bike tells me they have invested a lot of time in the bike. They make sure they point out all the good as well as all the bad.

More from the seller

CURRENT MECHANICAL: THE BIKE RUNS GREAT AND SHIFTS WELL, ( I FEEL OBLIGATED TO USE THE USUAL DISCLAIMER; IT SHIFTS WELL FOR A /2), NO ENGINE OR TRANSMISSION PROBLEMS.  THE BIKE HOLDS ITS OWN ON THE HIGHWAY, ALTHOUGH THE SPEEDO NEEDLE FLOATS A BIT OVER 60.  YOU COULD RIDE IT HOME,

COSMETICS:  THE PAINT ON THIS BIKE IS A MIXED BAG.  WHILE THERE IS NOT A PAINTED PART ON THIS BIKE THAT DOESN’T HAVE A SCRATCH OR NICK ON IT, THE FINISH IS SO GOOD THAT YOU CAN SEE YOURSELF IN THE PAINT.  THE TANK IS IN ESPECIALLY GOOD CONDITION.  PLEASE SEE “ORIGINAL & CORRECT?”

When the R69S rolled off the factory floor in West Germany, the 594cc engine was producing 42hp at 7000rpm. The S model may have had the same displacement as the workhorse R60/2, but there were differences aimed at making a Sports bike. The cylinder heads had a different combustion chamber, more hemispherical, in an attempt to get more compression: 9.5:1 compared to the 7.5:1 of the R60. 26mm Bings were attached to the new heads, a step up from the 24mm for the lesser models. With its Shaft drive, many may say that a BMW could never be a sports bike, but the R69S was the Bavarian attempt to keep up with the British twins.

For many, BMW means Black, Shaft drive, and Earles Forks. In 1967 Munich made a small change that preceded a large change. This R69US offered up on eBay shows the new telescopic forks which would be the first step on the redesign which would be the Slash 5 BMW. What they also did is make a collectible BMW. Though the factory apparently didn’t distinguish between the Earles Fork or US fork models when counting, a number like 1003 of 17,000 appears to be the total R69US produces. This fact will appeal to one group of buyer, the Sports designation will appeal to another. So don’t be surprised if this BMW goes for some good money. BB

You may also like...