Revelation: The Beauty of Simplicity

A buddy of mine has been getting his sport-tourer ready for a long trip, doing stuff like adjusting valves and other non-fun tedia.

It got me to thinking about the bikes I've owned and how simple/complicated repairs and maintenance are.

The valve-adjustment thing is what led to the revelation: Now I know why those guys love their Beemers!

Before the revelation, I thought of BMW bikes along these lines: (1) As expensive as a Harley, without the looks. (2) More power than a cruiser, but way less than a sportbike. (3) Did I mention, not the prettiest girl on the block (especially the naked ones)?

But after the revelation, I thought about how easy it is to adjust valves when the cylinders are sticking out in the wind. For that matter, replacing the head or cylinder base gaskets would be a relative breeze.

Removing the back wheel? Four bolts. And it has a centerstand! (We cruiser riders have forgotten what centerstands are.) The standard BMW toolkit includes tire spoons, a patch kit, and CO2 bottles. And a towel to wipe your hands with!

I have owned six bikes over the years, and not one of them was as simple to repair and maintain as an airhead/oilhead Beemer.

I always wondered why those other guys bought Beemers. Now I know: A bike that can be repaired in the middle of the African desert and prevent you from becoming a skeleton in the sand is a beautiful thing indeed: An ugly duckling that becomes a swan.
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George Obradovich
George Obradovich

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