First of all I'm from Middle/South east Europe so availability of the Ural and everything that comes with (any equipment) it is little bit different (hard to come by). Being closer to Russia it should be other way around... I have a wish to become an Ural owner. Never had a motorcycle and hope to get my motorcycle license this spring. New one is definitely out of my price range, but I've found used one and I would like some additional opinions and guidance.
First of all bike in question is the Ural M66 from 1968. Oldie but a goodie (hopefully). No other used Urals being sold in my country. I want to avoid hassle of importing one.
Bike has been recently renovated (about two years back) and it has new cylinders, new pistons and rings, new crankshaft and bearings, new alternator, new electrical wiring, completely restored gear box, new tires and new paint job. Pictures attached. Owner says it has 12.000 miles. Don't know if you can trust that since odometer can be easily manipulated.
I has 4 gears and reverse. I has 1WD which shouldn't pose an issue since I don't plan any of road. I plan on keeping to road (dirt, gravel, pavement, asphalt, concrete).
My understanding is that it is easy to maintain: make sure the air filter is clean, the spark plugs are working, it has oil and fuel. No complicated systems, everything is as simple as it gets. It can be fixed with a hammer, screw driver and a wrench.
My main concerns are:
1) I want Ural (sidecar motorcycle) I can drive seriously, not just look cool. I do not expect speed from this bike. Top speed for Ural M66 from 1968 should be 50mph?I hope it can cruise at 40-45 MPH without issues? How long does it take to get there? (will everybody behind me hate me
) Does anyone know this? I do not plan on going to highways unless 100% necessary.
2) What about power? Can I put a lady and some camping gear (tent, sleeping bags) in the side car and still drive without line of cars behind me?
3) How is comfort with older models? I've been explained by owner this bike is to be driven for 20 to 30 miles then take a coffee break. I'd like to be able to pull 60 miles before break, and to be able to drive 200 to 300 miles in a one day ride. Is this to much from any Ural? Or just to much for old one?
4) How are older models adjustable for tall riders? I am 6'4" and 200 lbs. I've seen (on internet) people on new Ural put handle bar raisers and put bench seat. Is this doable on older model? I'd like to keep tractor seat if possible, and be comfortable. Can I make any brackets, drill new holes? Any ideas and experience?
5) Would you generally say yay or nay on buying this old Ural? Never had a bike, not mechanically skilled (but an engineer, so I believe I can learn). Completely new rider. At least I won't have to unlearn riding "normal" two wheel motorcycle. Also, no side car driving courses in any vicinity on a language I speak. However, I located the sidecar driving manual floating on the forum.
Unfortunately I do not have option to meet/talk to any Ural owners for guidance and advice. Owner of the bike is there. However, I do not know how honest he can be, since I know he's trying to sell this bike for over a year. I'm afraid he will say anything just to sell it.
Also I do not have option to ride one Ural either. I've seen two drive by. I've seen a lot of things on the internet. I know I would want one. I guess I'm trying to prevent scenario where I would buy and and realize it looks cool but it's not for serious driving. It will be hard to sell. I want to make a hobby out of it and enjoy riding it.
Any advice that can be offered and shared is greatly appreciated. I realize in the end it is my decision to make and risk to take. However, I would like to get all the information I can before making the leap of faith towards the soviet steed.
I apologize for my bad mechanical English. Not my forte.
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