After major modifications, this vintage BMW was transformed into the ultimate long-distance traveller.
Lawyer Moe Warren tells a joke about how he got involved in his law career, and it includes his first job and motorcycles. When he was just a teen, he rode around Calgary on his Honda 150 Benly, delivering prescriptions for Crooks Drugs.
“My friend Bob Hall – he’s a judge now – did the same thing,” Warren says. “So, we often tell the joke that we got our start delivering drugs for crooks.”
Warren has never been without a motorcycle since he was 14. After the Benly and his drugstore job, he rode a Ducati 450 but sold it to go to school. Over the years, he’s owned Harley-Davidsons and Honda Gold Wings. In 1999, he bought a BMW R1100GS and took up adventure touring.
“When those bikes fall over, picking one up is a big job,” Warren explains. “I think I’d just evolved to the point where I thought I’d like something to ride on a more relaxed basis.”
The Quest Begins
After reading a story in Motorcycle Classics magazine about a restored BMW R60/2, Warren took an interest in classic BMWs. And not just a solo machine; he wanted one with a sidecar.
Five years ago, he began talking to Dave Anderson at Anderwerks Motorrad Spezialist in Calgary about the possibilities. Anderson suggested looking for an older bike with a newer engine – the best of both worlds, as the bike would have a strong frame designed for hauling a sidecar and a more powerful engine to keep up with modern traffic.
Warren located a 1969 BMW R60/2 in Quebec. Its original 600 cc flat-twin engine had been replaced with a R90/6 900 cc powerplant from a 1976 BMW. However, although the engine ran, a major part of the conversion process had not been completed; the original BMW driveshaft, which ran through the right side of the swingarm, did not align with the newer five-speed transmission output shaft and would need some careful engineering and modification.
The Journey Begins
Nevertheless, Warren bought the BMW sight unseen and had it shipped to Calgary. Meanwhile, as he looked for a sidecar, he called Blue Moon Cycle in Norcross, Ga. Luck was on Warren’s side: Blue Moon had taken delivery of a brand-new Steib 500 for a customer who changed his mind and no longer wanted the sidecar.
“It was unpainted and unassembled, still in its original crate, and I had it shipped to Coutts, Montana, where I drove down and picked it up,” Warren says.