HIGHLIGHTS DRAG ARTIST
O Started out as BMW R69 O 1000cc race-tuned engine O Frame lowered and hardtailed O Fairing from MV Agusta 250 A humble BMW has been transformed into a speed-seeking work of art
Paul Cardy’s dustbin-faired BMW was built for the Sultans of Sprint series in Europe this year.
Cardy had just finished building a Harley custom and was looking for a new project when he spotted video clips from the Glemseck 101, a drag race held over a 1/8th-mile course – which is when the Series 2 BMW R69 he’d bought as a rolling chassis with a logbook, but left languishing in the back of the shed, came to mind.
“I got the engine with it but that was pretty rubbish to be honest and I ended up buying a second one then got in touch with Richard Moore at Morespeed in Northampton to tune it,” says Cardy.
“We talked budget and what the money could buy and basically, I got a race-tuned engine. Richard won’t reveal exactly what he’s done, but it’s got his cams, he’s done some headwork, the original crankshaft assembly has been rebuilt. It’s got Dellorto carbs and an MSD total loss ignition and coil.
Cardy made the exhaust in stainless but then bought the silencer, though he had to ensure it measured up to Moore’s tuning specifications. He de-lugged the main frame but replaced the original swingarm – and then hard-tailed it. For the drag racer look, the forks have been reduced in ride height with internal mods.
The fairing came from Air-tech Streamlining in Vista, California who have been making fibreglass bodywork since 1983 and have over 5000 fairing moulds in stock.
“The mould was for a 1950s dustbinfaired MV Agusta 250. It’s ok for a race bike but I wanted this to be more than just a race bike. It looked like it was made from several sections bonded together and my paint guy and I eventually decided not to hide the ‘patina’ – but to paint over it!”
The art deco livery was painted by CT Motorcycle Service in Maidstone. “We wanted it to look retro, harping back to the 1950s/60s but also wanted it to look fast standing still – and wanted a British influence too. So we went for muted 50s/60s colours then added the red and white.
“We took the bike to TTS where we ran it on the dyno to set it up but I also talked to Richard Albans about the potential to supercharge it. It’s something I’m keen to do because I get so much out of the building process and the riding is just the icing on the cake.”