Well,  replaced the rear main and oil pumps seals and put the clutch and tranny back on the BMW R80ST with only minor drama. The heads finally came back last week, and Moon Motorsport did a fine job of getting the backordered cam chain to me on thursday… So all the pieces are here to put the bike back together. Figured I should study up on the cam chain a bit more before I replaced it, so put that off till I could get on the internet and download guru Snowbum’s tech article. So I spent this morning trying to sort through other what I though were minor tasks in the rebuild, like reinstalling the Brown side stand and the right side racks.

Well, turns out that the Brown sidestand doesn’t fit the monolever airheads, and I’ve put the original sidestand on the R100GS. Now given that both bikes normally are married to sidecars, not that big a deal. But it’s nice to have a sidestand when manuevering the bike around solo and when mounting the sidecar. So ‘spose I’ll just have to steal the factory stand back from the GS for now. On to the left side rack mounts… the same bolts hold up the muffler, so that’ll have to wait ’til after the heads are installed. And the muffler… ugh! Rusty and rusted right through in a discrete spot that blows hot exhaust right on the left swingarm bearing cover and keeps melting a hole in it. Not that noisy yet, so I’ve tolerated it. especially since a new muffler is $500+ and I’ve put at least $1200 into the bike this winter.

Now I’d be tempted to walk away, but I’ve got a schedule to keep… And schedules and old iron rebuilds don’t go well together. My airheads are working bikes, doing parades every weekend in the summer. Parade season starts in may, so I need this bike back by April so I have a month to debug it. So I’ve got a week to install the new cam chain, hang on the cylinders and pistons, and I guess the ratty muffler will just have to slide ’til next year.

I’m beginning to think I need to do a 12 step style inventory of my motor vehicle fleet. My newest sidecar tug is twenty years old, and though they be airheads they’re not entirely immune to the ravages of time. The little sidecar is 18 years old, and to gain access to repair the stress crack I had to cut and drill out totally rusted fasteners. On the other hand, the big sidecar is just as old and led a sheltered life (until I acquired it), so it’s fasteners can still be unfastened by normal means.

But clearly I need to start shopping for a new sidecar tug- the plan was to ‘hack the F800S, but with the rear bearing problems on that model that plan has been abandonned for now. If I’d bought a Triumph twin instead I could easily bolt on the ‘hack and be set… Then again, I’m now 150 miles from the nearest Triumph dealer. But I’ve got two Guzzi dealers with a hundred miles, more on that in a future post…