Is this bike worth taking a look at? - - Excellence in Motion
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old Sep 23rd, 2013, 11:37 am Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Shawnee, Kansas, United States
Posts: 3
Is this bike worth taking a look at?

First off, I am a new user of the k-bike forum. I have already learned quite a bit about the bike i am interested in buying on craigslist. But for all of you guys who know alot more than i do about these bikes, could you give me some wisdom?

It is a 1989 BMW K100RS

Here is the link:

- I have been having a hard time figuring out whether this model year has 8 valves or 16 valves. I have heard that the K100RS with 16 valves is a major improvement over the previous 8 valve design.
- This is a motorcycle that i want to invest in for a long time and have it running for years to come. Not just buy it now and sell it a year from now. I'm aware these bikes are renowned for going long miles, but this one has 69,000 miles on it.
- He has told me that the enrichener cable has broken/needs replaced. I am not sure where to go about buying a new one of those or how difficult it would be to replace.

And below is more detail in an email he sent me:

"I'm not the 1st owner, bought it from a 60-some year old guy out of Wichita, Ks who had a bunch of Beemers. He rode it to AZ and all around, retired touring, bought a K100LT for a bit more comfort instead. He did the last valve adjustment, i haven't popped it open yet to do one, though I've read to use different shims on the Flying Brick forum. I bought it with a few less rock chips, but in great condition.
I do have a clear title in my name, no liens. Bought it with cash from my last bike plus done from savings.

I did lay the bike over when I forgot to take the disc lock off within the last month. It had been previously dropped on the same side. I'll give you pictures of the side.

Sorry to hear of your last bike. She gave up on you, I take it?

I do my own maintenance, I'm a mechanic by trade. If something seems like a bit much, I'll find someone who's done it & ask for help.

The bike it's being stored in a friends garage as I don't have [email protected] my current residence. I drove accross town & swap out my car for it.
I use StaBil in the gas over winter, but keep it started, warmed up, & run until the fans come on during the cold months. Take the battery out & store it inside sometimes on the tender when it's to cold out. She had a good Panasonic battery in it, has always worked real well for me, I'll buy another.
Cables have been lubed periodically. The enrichener circuit's cable did snap & I have not replaced it as of yet. It's like a choke, but the bike is fuel injected.
I'm selling because I've become more interested in riding on the track than taking it out for sport touring. Only managed to get to NW Arkansas so far, not as far as I would have liked to. Kept thinking of Colorado, but I'm having a blast at the local track's road course on a modded SV650 I've been fixing up. I hop on that to commute to work too. The K bike gets pulled out on the weekends to go 2 up to Lawrence with my fiance, or to KC when the SV wouldn't be as comfortable. Wanted to head back to Arkansas next weekend on it, but the future father-in-law is coming in from out of state.

I have the owners manual, the full right side bag, & the left side bag inner, which attaches to the bike. The lid was stolen along with a nice pair of gloves at my last apartment. Good reason not to lock your bags.

The enrichener cable needs replaced, a valve adjustment couldn't hurt, some touch up paint to the rock chips. The grips could use replaced, but are not brittle. I replaced the transmission oil, drive shaft oil, & final drive oil, fork oil, rear shock bushings (aftermarket Progressive shock on the rear) within the past two years. Tires as needed. There's a new rear on it, Bridgestone Battleax to match the front. The front has some life left, wears slower than the rear.

Hope that's enough info for you for now. Come take a look at her."

Any information that you guys have on this specific year/model would be great.
Thank you to anyone who replies!!
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old Sep 23rd, 2013, 12:52 pm
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Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Greater Chicago area, , USA
Posts: 373
I owned one and wish I still had it. (It was killed by an idiot cage driver at the young age of 89,000 miles ) That is the model that introduced ABS. The special paint combo of white and blue was beautiful (the pinstripes were hand painted) A very good running bike and comfortable. I had put a corbin seat on it and I haven't had to do that with my GT. I do believe it was a 16 valve, but wouldn't swear to it. As a limited edition, I would think that they would have some extra value to them. I'd go for it.

04 K12GT
89K100RS (Gone, but not forgotten)
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old Sep 23rd, 2013, 2:44 pm
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: York, PA, United States
Posts: 106

The mileage is fine. I have had an 85 K100RS since 2000 and had a 94 K75 from 1994 until 2008. The K100 clutch went at 110,000 in 2013. The starter went at 95,000 in 2012. The K75 clutches averaged around 90,000. The K75 valves lasted 150,000. The K75 starter went at 30,000 and the replacement was fine at 230,000. The alternator went around 160,000.

Thr enrichener cable is an easy but unnecessary fix. On mine the only difference between the throttle cable and the enrichment cable is that the latter has a lock to hold it in place.

One issue for the early Ks was the failure of the electronic clocks. Part of this was due to bad venting. That may have been solved by 89. I am on my third speedo and second tach. I get used ones. It is possible to mechanically reset the odometer. I did this on speedo 2 but didnt bother on speedo 3.

Unless you get a bad machine or do OCD mileage, you will have a very reliable machine. Lubing the clutch splines is the most annoying task. You may have to do this every 30,000 miles. Or possibly every 60,000 miles.

Used parts are plentiful and lots of folks have working knowledge of them. IBMWR has a tech site for K bikes which will help you understand the weaknesses of this machine.

The K100 was my backup for the K75 for many years. I only put a few thousand miles per year on it during those years. After setting for months, it would fire right up.

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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old Sep 24th, 2013, 8:51 am
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Join Date: May 2007
Location: Belton, Tx, USA
Posts: 140
I think the 4 valve bikes have something written on the valve cover that reflects that. Also, lubing BMW cables is a bad idea due to the fact they have a teflon type lining.

Ron Cooper

91 K75RT
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old Sep 24th, 2013, 10:40 am
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Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Burton, British Columbia, Canada
Posts: 1,652
I have always cleaned/lubed the cables, problem with most lubes is that they don't dry and will attract dirt which may wear the lining. That's what the BMW service bulletin says about that. I see no problems when everything is kept clean. I switched to Teflon Dry lubes recently, the other products were attracting too much dirt arount the throttle shafts/springs. Saves me some cleanings.

Instruments....the early ones weren't vented. Not sure If they had that done by 89 but they did vent them later on. After 85 that is, my K100RS sure did build up a lot of moisture inside and fogged up the glass constantly. I drilled a few tiny holes in the back cover and problem solved until I took the bike to the shop for some warranty work. The tech had to go inside the instruments and plugged the holes with sillycone. First damp morning I noticed that I was back to the foggy glass. Hum....had to remove the sillycone and tell him later about my "mod". Good tech and willing to listen, he tought that was a good idea.

Benelli 50cc at 14
Yamaha RD 200 at 16
Yamaha RD 350 at 17
Honda CB 750 F at 18
Honda V45 Sabre at 24
BMW K100RS at 27
BMW R100GS at 34
BMW K1200RS at 53
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old Sep 27th, 2013, 12:54 am
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Location: Moraine, OH, USA
Posts: 305
if you have pictures, the 4 valve had rounded off valve covers, the 2 valve's was more squarish. I think they started producing the 4v in 1989
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1987 RED K75S
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old Sep 27th, 2013, 12:18 pm Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Shawnee, Kansas, United States
Posts: 3
Thanks for the responses guys! I BOUGHT THE BEAUTY!! It really is a great motorcycle, I just need to focus on getting more comfortable with riding a heavier bike. I own a 74 CB350F and that comes in around 390 pounds. So with the 89 K100RS being at 570 pounds, its just much different.

But anyhow, I really appreciate all of the great responses! I will treat this bike well and hopefully she provides many happy miles to come
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old Sep 28th, 2013, 8:56 pm
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Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Moraine, OH, USA
Posts: 305
Neat, you upgraded with a 15 year newer bike, and the new bike is 24 years old!

1987 RED K75S
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