I’m not sure if the Airheads (riders of two valve twin BMW motorcycles built up through 1996) invented the practice of “tech days”, but they’re the ultimate practicioners of the art. The standard garden variety Airhead tech day is a daylong event at someone’s garage where plentiful conversation emerges, quantities of good foods and libations are enjoyed, and a few minor repairs are made to Airhead motorcycles. In some ares, these events have grown to three day weekend campouts with more involved mechanical work attempted. The practice is catching on- I’ve heard of Guzzi riders and dual sport riders having similar wrenchin’ and munchin’ get togethers, and in the VW diesel world you’ll find “GTG”s (GetTogethers) being organized over at http://www.tdiclub.com .

But the Airheads have now officially outdone themselves- last weekend in Kansas City a baker’s dozen or so of us convened and amidst the conviviality and customary victuals went in deep, venturing where few airheads have gone before- into our Airhead transmissions. Here’s the photographic evidence:

‘Twas a long weekend- when I arrived around suppertime friday several airheads had already cracked open the shells of their trannies and exposed the greasey innards thereof. We knocked off about 9, but were back at work just after sunup saturday as we pulled old bearings, pressed new bearings on, and replaced every pall spring in or out of sight. A couple hours after sundown we trudged off to our dinner reservations at a most excellent KC German resteraunt, then headed off to bed and dreams of slick shifting BMW boxes. Well, we can dream, can’t we? Back to work around sunup sunday, measurin’ and shimmin’ to perfection, then closing up our trannies, many not to see sunlight or malfunction for another decade or more. ‘Bout noon we knocked off, as some of had daylong (and longer) drives home.

Even though I didn’t quite finish putting my tranny back together- was missing a part and the shimming measurements didn’t all jive- It was a great weekend! Despite that bakers dozen of us working elbow to elbow in a two car garage everybody worked together and we had few problems. Thanks to host Joe Cuda for putting on the event and putting up with us, and retired BMW mechanic and all around guru Matt Parkhurst and others for their guidance and teaching. This is the model for how to train owner/mechanics to care for our old machines and “keep ’em flying”!

 

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