1973 BMW R75/5

I will admit that the motorcycles that started me on this journey is the BMW R75/5. Many people have that one motorcycle that catches there eye, makes them stop and look, and this snowballs into the obsession that we are all afflicted with. We don’t know what it is about that “One” motorcycle, but it will always be the known as the epicenter for us. This 1973 BMW R75/5 offered up on eBay now attracted me, and more so then other bikes.

From the seller

Up for auction we have a vintage 1973 BMW R75/5 cafe racer.  We are a BMW motorsports dealership & we have had this R75/5 on display among other brand new BMW motorcycles on our showroom floor.  This motorcycle get a lot of looks and positive comments here at our dealership.  Our BMW authorized service department has checked out & serviced this R75/5, so it starts, runs, and shifts through all of the gears just fine.  This motorcycle has Clubman handlebars, Corbin seat, center stand, original & aftermarket side kickstands, and left side Napoleon Bar End Mirror.  The right side exhaust pipe does have a ding & also has some visible rust, but otherwise this R75/5 is in great condition.

If you look close at the pictures you can see that there has been a time in its 40 years on the planet, it has spent some time sitting. The aluminum has that “patina”, the chrome has lost its shine, and the frame has the layer of stuff that collects on things at rest. There are shiny bits, the “toaster tank” is very nice, the seat is in good repair. It appears that someone has found it and started on the road to restoration.

The seller quotes the manual

BMW R75/5 Specifications:
Start of Production 1969
End of Production 1973
Numbers Produced 38,370


Motor Type Four-stroke two cylinder horizontally
opposed “Boxer” engine, air cooled
Bore x Stroke 82 x 70.6 mm (3.22 x 2.77 in)
Displacement 745 cc
Max Power 50 hp (36.8 KW) at 6,200 rpm
Max Torque 60 Nm / 44 ft lb at 5,000 rpm
Compression Ratio 9.0 : 1

Valves Per Cylinder 2
Valve Control OHV, using push rod and rocker arm
Carburation System 2 constant depression carburettors, Bing
64/32/4-3 or 64/32/9-10
Engine Lubricating System Wet sump

In 1968 BMW added telescopic forks to the /2 model line, replacing some of the Earles Forks that are iconic to the 1955-1969 BMW. This was foreshadowing the next incarnation, the Slash 5 bikes which came out in 1970.  But there was a problem that occurred; The new line of motorcycles would put the rider and bike into a “tank slapping” wobble. If you look closely at the drive shaft on this bike,  you can see a weld about one inch from the rear drive unit. This is where the drive shaft was lengthens to increase the wheel base in an attempt to cure this mysterious wobble.  So when you see R75/5 listed as a LWB or SWB, it indicates if it is a long or short wheel base, dividing bikes 1972 and before, or 1973 and later.

The first motorcycle that I owned was the next newest generation BMW from this R75/5. I planned on replacing the one I owned with the /5 but somehow I ended up going older, and older. I always say that the R75/5 will some day come to my garage, and I think this one is in the right shape. Not too nice, and not found leaning up against the building out back. BB



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