Although I love to sell and my career has taken me through selling all sorts of things, I don’t particularly like selling my own bikes. I buy old bikes to ride, repair and enjoy them, but occasionally one just ends up with too many motorcycles and a few have to be sold to make room for more. I sold one of my BMW R1100R models on eBay in the depths of winter last year. Here’s some information on that one.
First registered on June 6, 1997, the bike had good history. I had serviced it the previous year. At the time of selling, I owned seven other BMWs and all were underused: this one had covered just 220 miles since it was serviced and I would prefer it to be used and enjoyed, so I prepped it for an MOT with a new steering head bearing and all the usual checks and adjustments and it was sold ready to ride away with a year’s test.
I’d bought the bike from Geoff, a pastor down in Sussex. He had owned it for several years but was selling to pay for some work on the church and the adjoining family house. I spent an enjoyable morning with the family when I bought the bike and it had a great vibe about it. My use of this bike had centred on riding out with my daughter while she was riding a Piaggio 50 to college and back: a thirty-mile round trip. I had done quite a few miles with her over twelve months, building her road sense in the run up to doing he car driving test.
The torquey engine makes the R100R huge fun to ride. This bike was sold with the BMW touring luggage panniers not seen in these photos. All the cases, seat lock and ignition worked with one key (there were also two spares).
BMW R1100R Specification and Equipment
Finished in Dolphin Blue Metallic, the paintwork was all original and in decent condition. Non-servo ABS was fitted and worked fine. The bike also had factory-fitted two-stage heated grips, which work very effectively, complimenting the ABS to make these bikes an ideal winter ride to keep expensive summer bikes off the salty roads.
Older oilheads are a great introduction to BMW flat twins for not a lot of money. R1100Rs ride very well. They are a beautiful fit for my size and shape: the seat height is highly adjustable, the brakes and suspension are excellent and that punchy, fuel-injected engine is a joy to use. I think these bikes are amongst the best blend of classic riding qualities with modern-day conveniences that the airhead models don’t have.
The bike benefitted from many new parts, including a new rear shock absorber at 42k miles and a new clutch at 52k miles. A replacement transmission from a low-mileage 1100R had been fitted and the gearchange was excellent. Both tyres were in as-new condition – Dunlop Supermaxx up front and Bridgestone BT023 in the rear – and the brake discs and pads front and rear were also nearly new.
The service book was stamped up to 35k miles, after which it was home serviced by keen owners, with receipts showing some help from experts on more involved jobs like the clutch fit and gearbox swap, changing the throttle cable (43k) and balancing the throttle bodies. As I enjoy working on my bikes, I carried out quite a bit of work including repairing the common ignition switch wiring faults and going through the loom to find any other issues, a full fuel tank rebuild including later fuel pump and new filter, new air filter, changing the dash bulbs and fitting new BMW hand grips.
Some signs of age were inevitable, including the usual BMW corrosion to powder-coated engine parts, which any oilhead owner will be familiar with. Irrespective of the cosmetics, the bike was a very usable vintage BMW in good mechanical order at a sensible price. It would make a fun commuter, great base for a classic scrambler or a just winter weekend fun bike to keep a newer machine safely tucked up indoors, away from the salty roads.
The bike sold online and was collected by a friend of mine who delivered the bike to its new owner. eBay is a good place to sell bikes. This one went for £1700 and was just about the cheapest R1100R I have seen in recent months. I was happy to pass it on to a good new home.
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