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From the Owner

The ups and downs of owning a classic motorcycle

Pat Burch's 1976 BMW R90S

bmw r90s 
Pat Burch (center) poses with her husband, Dick Wildauer,
and friend Pat Kohlscheen.

Bike: 1976 BMW R90S
Pat Burch
Hometown: Jamaica, Iowa
Occupation: Computer technology

Etc.: Burch bought her first motorcycle, a 1966 BMW, in 1976. She has owned 11 BMWs, Triumphs and Harley-Davidsons since. The bike that never fails to bring a smile to her face is her 1976 BMW R90S, which she has ridden almost 20,000 miles since purchasing it in 1996.

Burch’s countdown of reasons she’s crazy about her 1976 BMW R90S starts now:

Three: Number of decades that the R90S has not only survived but thrived since the model’s introduction in 1974.

Two: “You can do routine maintenance with two tools,” she says. “You can be at your valves in five minutes, unlike modern bikes where you spend the first 45 minutes removing the plastic.”

One: Burch has ridden Harley-Davidsons, Triumphs and other BMWs, but the R90S is her favorite. “It reminds you that if you do something stupid, it’s going to drop you on your butt,” she says. “And modern bikes comfort you that they’ll do everything in their power to keep you from going on your butt.”

Blastoff: The R90S still goes like a bat. “You give me a 20-year old on a 750 Ninja,” she said, “and he may be able to get me at the top end, but I’ll give him a run for his money.”

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