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545 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Seems like Ive been driving my 76' BMW R90 most often this summer and have always wanted a 60's R series bike with the plunger type rear shocks,
Well this bugger showed up near enough I had to go and take a look,
Its a 1955 R25/3 with a 250cc engine, Actually a 247cc, and a whole 13 HP driven thru a 4 speed gear box,
They come with side car mount and either side car or solo gearing, This has the solo gearing which is significantly better for suburban use,
Its all original aside from the mirror and new BMW muffler, Bike is still wearing original paint throughout,
Ive only put a couple miles on it and look forward to getting to know it better over the next few weeks,
Heres the two pics I took earlier today.
~ ~ ~
And yes, Its the oldest bike I own but not the smallest engine,
My TW comes in second and the Honda cub with a 50cc 4 stroke is the smallest,
I am however thrilled to have this BMW in my garage !
Peter B


1,861 Posts
Gorgeous & a real beauty. Congratulations.
That model with the "Elephant Ear" front fender is very, very collectable in it's original, unrestored condition. I'm very excited for you.

Some things:
1) Join Vintage BMW Owners today if you haven't yet... Vintage BMW Motorcycle Owners | Dedicated to the Preservation of Classic and Antique BMW Motorcycles
They have a filter search that can determine your bikes history when you enter your serial (vin) number which should be the same found in 3 locations on the bike. Tell you the importer, the date of manufacture, etc. There is also a link to the BMW Archives in Berlin that can tell you even more. One thing that would be interesting if you join today/introduce yourself is why there would be a side stand on the right side of the bike? I'd like to know too. Might be a common Q & A from other r25 owners. There is a yahoo group dedicated to this model as well.

2) Always keep clean and wax but do not ever restore. The value of these bikes are not just in their beauty and age but in their originality. While the over-the-top restorations look incredible these are as they say "only original once". For something that has been neglected and or in pieces restoration is better than parting out. You obviously are not in that classification.
I often wax the rust spots, cracks and scratches on my r60/2. The only motorcycle that I have ever owned that is worth more than when I bought it.

3) Browse the fleabay and craigslist linked sections for parts for your bike every once and awhile even if you don't need them. Used originals are getting harder to find so when you see for instance something that will fit or another getting parted out you'll want to stash some spares around. Electronic parts like a generator (does it even have one), headlamps, etc. are nice to have on the side. Other small too-dads as well. If you ever come across a gearbox for your bike that was for sidecar duty buy it, clean it up and put it in a box. Lots of interest in adding a Steib to these little bikes and even if you don't personally do it someone might want to.
Parts new or old are very expensive.

4) I maintain mine but initially sent it out to MAX BMW for them to set a common denominator for me to start from. Previous owner spent thousands having them change all rubber parts, lock-sets, tires, hose's, re-build bing carbs, etc. I had them re-install all the original parts that were taken off and given to me in a big box making her a US model again. What was missing we had to import from Germany. Did I mention parts, even the tiniest of screws are expensive? MAX has 4 locations with 2 of them specializing in vintage bikes. The Brookfield, CT. location is the one that I use because Phil Cheney is the Master Mechanic there. I was originally looking for a /5 to buy but when I saw his name included in the For Sale ad ("serviced by Phil Cheney") ... that is how I ended up going to look at my bike in the first place. MAX's parts database is very good for vintage bikes like yours. Again you just put in your year and model and it filters out everything else.

5) If you have owner and service history that is a big, big plus. Does she have an oil filter or "slingers"? If slingers you might want to consider having them serviced depending on the milage. That is value-added and if you have a lot of miles a good thing to do on a 62 year old motorcycle.

1,871 Posts
Super find Pred. Do we love our "thumpers" or what??? Good info Stagewex. Badluck, there is, or was recently, a K75 close to me in "good condition" for $800.00 obo. They go frequently for very low prices.

545 Posts
Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
OK Mike, Will do,
Im looking for a service manual and the proper air pump for the frame,
As I understand the gear box is the same for Solo and Sidecar, The final drive hob was different,

It does have a generator,
No owners manual or cards but does have an original Virginia inspection sticker from 1964 stuck to the inside of the toolbox door,
Interesting how the air intake tube actually runs thru the gas tank,
In Pa I can plate it with a 55 original motorcycle tag which I am hoping to do instead of putting some new shiny PA plate on it,
Im glad that option exists.
No there won't be an aesthetic restoration going on here,
I like it just how it is!
It truly is a thing of beauty to me!

2,719 Posts
My first two wheeler was a 1957 R-26 with earles forks. I paid 350 dollars for it, a princely sum in those days. It had a kilometer speedometer and would go more than 120.
Once on a long straight downhill it touched 135. I was young and dumb and did wheelies with it until I tore out the rear end gears. I bought a whole new rear end assembly for 125 dollars from the BMW dealer.
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