JPS Boxer

Full car­bon BMW turns heads

Motorcycle News (UK) - - This Week - By Gary Pinchin

Classy car­bon cre­ation

‘ There was a time when no-one wanted Boxer twins, but now the price of donor bikes has soared’

This has to be the coolest BMW R80 ever cre­ated. Pete Hod­son, of Side­rock Cy­cles in Poole, wanted to build a bike that would sat­isfy a long­ing for car­bon. “I bought this R80 as an aban­doned project,” he says. “I wanted to do a full car­bon ef­fect bike for some time – and fin­ish it in the iconic black and gold JPS liv­ery. The black and gold Nor­tons of the 1990s were truly amaz­ing.”

Pete, who raced at na­tional level in the 80s and 90s has dubbed this cafe racer ‘Car­bonesque’ and it’s based on a 1977 R80. He’s to­tally re­built the mo­tor with fresh parts and fit­ted late 1980-on­wards Nikasil bar­rels and starter mo­tor which is lighter and lower geared. Plus the BM gets the lat­est Boyer elec­tronic ig­ni­tion.

A new light­weight clutch to give a lighter lever ac­tion and lighter fly­wheel are also fit­ted – again orig­i­nally fit­ted to the later 1981-on­wards model. The en­gine is fin­ished with Si­mo­niz Tough Black paint while the rocker box and front cover have been pow­der-coated and then all the ribs pol­ished to cre­ate the fine de­tail­ing. The mount­ing box for the bat­tery sits un­der­neath.

The stock carbs have been aqua-blasted and ul­tra­son­i­cally cleaned then up-jet­ted and fit­ted with K&n-type fil­ters.

Stain­less ex­haust head­ers are from Ar­mours and have been aqua-blasted for the satin-look fin­ish. “I like the way they re­tain that lovely yel­low sheen,” he says. Muf­flers are Nor­ton peashooter style from Was­sells, painted satin black.

The frame has been de-lugged and pow­der-coated satin black. Pete has fit­ted one of his own Src-de­signed cafe racer bolt-on sub­frames and seats, which he sells as a sep­a­rate kit (he’s also work­ing up a scram­bler/tracker ver­sion). Stock forks have been re­worked with pro­gres­sive springs, heav­ier oil, new seals. Brakes have new seals and sin­tered pads.

“The shocks came with the bike,” says Pete. “I’ve no idea of the brand but they are fully ad­justable with a re­mote gas reser­voir.”

Stock R80 BMW al­loy rims (shod with Dun­lop Street Smart tyres) have been given a ‘car­bon’ look, in keep­ing with the tank, seat and en­gine top cover.

The ef­fect is ap­plied by Wicked Coat­ings in Poole us­ing a wa­ter trans­fer print­ing process called hy­dro­graph­ics. The car­bon ef­fect on the tank is ‘painted’ in three sep­a­rate dips yet it’s vir­tu­ally im­pos­si­ble to de­tect the joins. The gold pin­strip­ing is also by Wicked.

The head­light is a pat­tern CB750 unit in metal be­cause Pete doesn’t like plas­tic. Bul­let-shape rear in­di­ca­tors are LED. Vis­i­ble wiring is vir­tu­ally elim­i­nated thanks to Pete us­ing mi­cro switches for lights, horn and in­di­ca­tors with the wires go­ing into a new Moto Gad­get ‘M But­ton’ unit in­side the right clip-on. Then there’s just one

wire from the unit to the M con­troller elec­tron­ics box un­der the car­bon cover on the en­gine unit.

Yes, it’s an­other bril­liant cus­tomised BMW but what is it about the Bavar­ian Box­ers twins that rocks Pete’s boat? “I ac­cept the BMW is a well-used bike for this kind of cus­tom,” he says, “but I’ve still lots of donor bikes left to cre­ate even more.

“Let’s face it, there was a time only re­cently that no-one wanted a boxer twin. But since peo­ple started cus­tomis­ing them, the price of donor bikes has risen and once they are no longer eco­nom­i­cally vi­able, then BMW cus­toms will fade out.”

But Pete is al­ready branch­ing out into other mar­ques. “I’ve got two more builds on the go,” he re­veals. “One is a 1976 T3-based Guzzi with a 1000cc en­gine and I’m work­ing on a BSA with a Nour­ish bil­let crank which has been taken out to 900cc.”

Pete is a big fan of 1990s JPS Nor­tons

Liv­ery harks back to JPS rac­ing cars and bikes The rider gets a sim­ple and stylish view

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