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Marusho Magnum 500

PostPosted: Sat Aug 31, 2019 1:14 pm
by cornbinder89
I owned one of these in my youth. I had bought it in poor shape and got it running, but never found all the missing parts I needed. The clutch rod was one thing I needed to get made, and I was missing the headlight.
Unfortunately, when I had to move to Chicago, I had to get rid of it. Traded it for some work I needed done.
Being before the age of the internet, I never knew how rare it was. Many BMW R50 parts would fit, but many would not as well. BMW parts were never cheap, and buying only to find they didn't work was a big problem.
I don't remember the year, but it was either one of 600 or one of 180 built.
Sure wish I still had it.

Re: Marusho Magnum 500

PostPosted: Sat Aug 31, 2019 5:11 pm
by Binder Mike
A lot of countries cloned the BMW flat twin including Russia and China and not under any license agreement but from war spoils or hand me down technology from one communist bloc country to another. The fact that you owned a Marusho is pretty cool as they are rare indeed and probably the most refined of the lot. Japan also made Harley Davidson 45 cu. in. copies under license from Harley before the war broke out and post war Kawasaki made BSA A10 clones.

15 years ago I owned an old Ukranian Dnper sidecar rig that was a Beemer copy but the motor was junk. I was able to swap in an entire BMW R80 motor into it and it then became indestructible. Both rear wheels were driven like the war hacks were and with knobby tires it would go anywhere a jeep could. I used to ride it all winter. Here's my Dnper, still running strong two owners later:


Re: Marusho Magnum 500

PostPosted: Sun Sep 01, 2019 9:53 am
by cornbinder89
I always wanted a BMW twin, and missed out on getting one by having to run to a bank to get more money. The guy who sold me the Marusho also had a rare Indian 4 cyl, but that was well above my league. Mine was definitely restorable, and I even rode it without a working clutch.
When I had to move to Chicago, I knew I would have no place to store it, so I passed it on to another guy. I hope it still is out there but I don't remember the frame number. I had been storing it the barn of an ex girl friends mother's. Not really an option to keep it there any longer.
From what I remember, it used a battery and coil ign where as the BMW used a mag. It had Mukuni carbs in place of Bing, the castings weren't as fine as BMW castings, but still was a fine bike.
I ended up with an early Goldwing (which I still have) and it awaits me having time to fix it up and get back to riding it. I haven't had it on the road in about 20 years.
The Marusho would have been a fine road bike.

Re: Marusho Magnum 500

PostPosted: Sun Sep 01, 2019 8:51 pm
by Binder Mike
I'm not a one brand guy, in the 52 years I've been riding I have owned pretty much everything out there, I even had a 46 Indian Chief before they were selling for crazy money (should have kept that one). My current ride is not a classic or brand new but a 2009 BMW GSA I picked up a few years ago and have been enjoying traveling on it. It's happy on rough dirt roads or the interstate so it's a fun bike to explore with. My other is a Suzuki DR650 that I have highly modified that is my woods and trail bike, it's fun to explore the back country closer to home.



Re: Marusho Magnum 500

PostPosted: Sun Sep 01, 2019 9:05 pm
by cornbinder89
Not a one brand man either. I had a Kaw S2 Honda CL350, the Marusho and the Goldwing. Still would like a BMW twin, but haven't been on a bike in 20 years, I just am trucking too much to have the time.
The Goldwing will likely be my last bike, it is old enough to still have a kick-starter (as well as electric) and simple to work on.