Bike Test

World exclusive to www.bikezen.co.uk surely the two most talked about machines of 2011:-

BMW R1200GSBMW R1200GS 

Price From $15,000

Chang Jiang 750Chang Jang 750 

Price From $2,600 (for a good one)

Manufacturer BMW Motorrad Production R1200GS since 2004
Adventure since 2005
Manufacturer Chang Jiang 750, the sidecar motorcycle produced in various forms for China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA) from 1957 to today.
Engine1,170 cc, 2-cylinder boxer, air/oil cooled Bore / Stroke 101 × 73 mm (4.0 × 2.9 in) Engine – Yes it has one! 750 2-cylinder boxer (ish), air cooled
Number of wheels as Standard 2 Number of wheels as Standard 4
Can it pull a wheelie sideways? No Can it pull a wheelie sideways? Yes, see picture
Power81 kW (109 hp) @ 7,750 rpm Power – oh lots and lots, certainly enough! The M1S (aka M1 Super) has 32hp, 12v, over-head valve!
Torque120 N·m (89 ft·lbf) @ 6,000 rpm Torque – Goodness yes!
Transmission 6-speed Transmission Yes and a reverse gear! (Which is so important it needs its own card)
Reverse Gear No Reverse Gear Yes
Shaft drive Yes Shaft drive Yes
Wheelbase
Seat height 850 mm (33 in)
Wheelbase Comes equipped with SAW system, acronym for, Short Arsed Welsh – meaning this is a very comfortable bike for those whose bottoms are closer to the ground than average.
Adventure Weight 203 kg (450 lb) Adventure Weight URGENT – never trust anything that comes labelled ‘Adventure’ especially ‘Adventure weight’ – whatever that means – probably the extreme weight of a bike packed with the neurotic swaddling of middle aged men.
Boot Space None whatsoever! Boot Space Lots!
Can it be repaired easily by two Numb-nuts who have ridden it off the road, down a loose gravel slope and into a river? No Can it be repaired easily by two Numb-nuts who have ridden it off the road, down a loose gravel slope and into a river? Yes
Does the tool box come with a claw hammer?No Does the tool box come with a claw hammer? Yes as standard, and a sledge hammer as optional
Can it be picked up when dropped without a crane or an erupting hernia? Probably not. Can it be picked up when dropped without a crane or an erupting hernia? The CJ 750 is perfectly balanced on its three wheels and rarely rolls over.
Security Very noticeable, needs secure parking – likely to be nicked Security Excellent – it the steal-ability of a Skoda Estelle – trust me I have owned both a CJ and an Estelle and no one has stolen either. Even with the keys in, the ownership documents and some money!
Rating on the ‘Idea stolen from Hitler’ scale (1-10) 2 Rating on the ‘Idea stolen from Hitler’ scale (1-10) 10
The Chang Jang came to China via Russia, but exactly how Russia got hold of one remains a mystery. One theory has it that in 1940 the Soviets bought as many as five BMW R71s from neutral Sweden. These bikes were shipped to Russia where they were reverse engineered. Engineering blue prints and casting molds were made of all parts. Within two years the Soviets were producing the very nearly indistinguishable M-72.
Was the primary factory concerned with the production of the Bike ever called nan chang fei ji zhi zao gong si (formerly guo ying hong du ji xie chang) then changed its name again to jiang xi hong du hang kong gong ye ji tuan? No Was the primary factory concerned with the production of the Bike ever called nan chang fei ji zhi zao gong si (formerly guo ying hong du ji xie chang) then changed its name again to jiang xi hong du hang kong gong ye ji tuan? Yes
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3 thoughts on “Bike Test

  1. I’ve read the alternate history of the Dniepr/Ural/CJ750.

    Pre WWII, German Foreign Minister Joachim von Ribbentrop brokered the von Ribbentrop Pact . It was a non aggression pact between Germany and the fairly new Soviet Union and was signed 23 August 1939. Just four days earlier, on 19 August, the German–Soviet Credit (also Commercial) Agreement was signed. It (from Wikipedia:”was an economic arrangement between the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany whereby Soviet Union received an acceptance credit of 200 million Reichsmark. over 7 years with an affective interest rate of 4.5 percent. The credit line was to be used during the next two years for purchase of capital goods (factory equipment, installations, machinery and machine tools, ships, vehicles, and other means of transport) in Germany and was to be paid off by means of Soviet material shipment from 1946 onwards”).

    The Nazis attacked the Soviets in May of 1941. That meant the Soviets had 21 months to buy as much machinery and vehicles, much of it military, though dated, from the Germans on credit. Now Germany had been developing new military technology in secret since Hitler came to power. They were all to happy to share their older military technology with their “friends” the Russians. One of the vehicles the Soviets purchased, along with the tooling to produce them, was the BMW R71, as used by Germany’s military and police forces since production began in 1937 or 38. The Germans were equipped with their new R75′s. With the new engine design, sturdier frame, driven sidecar wheel and seating for 3 with a machine gun, it was one of their “secret” pre-war developments.
    So the Soviets began building the M-72, an exact copy of the R71 perhaps to slightly less quality control. They cranked out hundreds and hundreds of them during the war. At one point when German shelling and bombing of the area near the factory on the Dniepr River threatened production, an entire production line was crated up and moved to the Ural mountains. After the war, the Soviet state retooled both factories to produce bikes as a way of getting cheap transportation to the masses, and to keep the factory workers busy. Vast quantities of spares were also produced. The Soviet bikes were also marketed as the Cossack.

    The history gets a bit sketchy hereabouts but at some point after the Communists took power in China, the new friends (actually they went way back, with both fighting the Japanese at one point or another) exchanged greetings and technology with the Chinese receiving from the Soviets, as you might guess, M-72 type motorcycles and tooling to make more (or they flat out stole the technology by reverse engineering???). Thus the CJ750 was born. Quality control over the CJ’s was pretty good when it was all for the military. Later civilian production bikes were plagued with QC issues, porous castings, out of round brake drums/hubs, etc. These and the Soviet bikes are a good way to own a replica R71 but they are for the true aficionado of classic bikes. You need to enjoy tinkering for twenty minutes before (and during) each ride. There are reputable builders out there who bring these old oddball boxers up to reliable standards. The Chinese also manufactured mountains of spare parts for the PLA bikes. These old army parts inventories, in China at least, are auctioned off and builders use the best of them to rebuild bikes for sale both in their domestic and overseas markets.Lots of shysters too. Another trick, done by Jim Bryant and partners, is to put a modern /5 or /6 or /7 BMW motor in them, usually a 600 or 650 as they have way enough power for the old school chassis. These guys also have cast wheels made for them with round drums and everything.

    I like the Ural/Dniepr/CJ sidecars. I am looking for one to fit to my ’73 R75/5. If anybody reading this knows of a connection in western Canada, better in Alberta, where I might find a beat up car like that (or of any kind for that matter), reply to this thread and we’ll exchange info.

    Brent aka rider75
    in the Peace Country,
    northern Alberta,
    Canada.

  2. Fair and very authoritative, I will change the rating on the ‘top trump’ as follows:
    Rating on the ‘Idea stolen from Hitler’ scale (1-10) from a 10 to a 7
    Still a comfortable margin I feel :)

    Thanks for the post!
    Incidentally when buying a CJ the quality is still better with ex-military models!

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