Stun­ning R80

BMW Dakar rep? No – just a bloke in a shed

Motorcycle News (UK) - - This Week - By Gary Pinchin BUILT ED­I­TOR @MCNNEWS mo­tor­cy­cle­news

‘I made it all up as I went along but I’m de­lighted with the way it’s turned out’

There’s some­thing very fac­tory about Richard Brown’s scram­bler. Maybe it’s the Mo­tor­rad liv­ery that lends an air of works-prepa­ra­tion. Or maybe it’s the fact that this is sim­ply a beau­ti­fully fin­ished build.

Richard pre­vi­ously built a Honda CB550 café racer and has bought a GPZ1100 in a dozen boxes as a po­ten­tial project, but see­ing his mate Pete Hod­son weav­ing magic on a range of cus­tom BMWS un­der the Side­rock Cy­cles (SRC) ban­ner gave him the en­cour­age­ment to have a go at a boxer twin.

Richard bought the 1980 BMW R80 donor bike off Pete, stripped it down to the last nut and bolt and then started the painstak­ing build process.

“The en­gine’s been com­pletely re­built,” he says. “I’m a me­chanic by trade but I got Pete’s help be­cause he’s got so much ex­pe­ri­ence on these things. It’s still got the orig­i­nal heads, cylin­ders and pis­tons and the orig­i­nal crank has been checked over. It’s also got a new tim­ing chain and new seals.

“The stain­less ex­haust head­ers were bent by JT Tubes in Up­ton. The muf­flers are smooth cones, which I bought on ebay. I wanted high-level pipes, both ex­it­ing on the same side to give the bike a Dakar look but it was dif­fi­cult to set the bike up to run smoothly with two very dif­fer­ent length ex­hausts. Carbs are VM34 Miku­nis from Al­lens. It runs much bet­ter with these and they give it a bit more oomph.”

Richard kept the stock frame but added an SRC light­weight sub­frame. Shocks are TEC, and the wheels have been re-laced and shod with Conti Twin­duros. The tank is stock but re­painted by Wicked Coat­ings in the BMW Mo­tor­sport colour trim. The seat, with an em­bossed BMW R logo, is by Glenn Moger, and al­loy fend­ers are by SRC.

It’s got fat bars, but not the usual Ren­thals in Q-tech race ris­ers. There’s a small Acewell dig­i­tal speedo and rev counter, an­gel-eye LED head­light set in Alchemy head­light brack­ets, and LED in­di­ca­tors. It’s got a brand new wiring loom, with Mo­to­gad­get switches.

Richard said: “I made it all up as I went along but I’m de­lighted with the way it’s turned out.”

Hard to be­lieve this is only Richard Brown’s sec­ond project

An SRC sub­frame saved vi­tal bulk from the BMW VM34 Mikuni carbs im­prove run­ning

LED head­light adds a mod­ern twist

Cute head­ers were be­spoke for the bike

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