A one-owner airhead, rebuilt and handed-down from father to sons…
The BMW R100 is a storied classic of the motorcycling world. The last of the airheads, the 980cc Bavarian boxer remains popular among riders, restorers, and customizers alike. The bike is rugged, simple to maintain, and still turns heads at the shops.
Enter Iñaki Bellver, a Ford product engineer and the founder of the workshop ØNIX Design, out of which he builds two bikes a year. Believe it or not, Iñaki’s uncle bought this 1978 BMW R100 brand new from the showroom floor, and he’s been riding it since then, racking up more than four decades in the saddle:
“My uncle from the south of Spain bought it new more than forty years ago and has been using it since then. Now, he wants to hand over it to his sons, and give the motorcycle a new life.”
That meant building a machine that would please two different generations, both father and sons. What’s more, the bike need to be street-legal, have a double seat, and couldn’t have clip-ons. Fortunately, Iñaki was up to the challenge:
“I maintained the classic and elegant look that old R-lines have, but at the same time simplified as much as possible.”
The result is one of the cleanest, sleekest airhead customs we’ve seen — sure to please any and all generations. Below, we get the full story on the build, as well as some stunning photos from Juan Llobell (@juanllbbt) — including sunrise shots from Valencia’s old F1 racetrack!
BMW R100 Custom: In the Builder’s Words
Myself and my workshop:
I have been around bikes and cars since I was 14 years old, when I had my first bike. And at the age of 18, I bought my first classic, an English Honda CB750F that’s in a state of continuous modification. I work as a product engineer at Ford Motor company, so the workshop is not a full-time job for me. Nevertheless, I manage to make two bikes per year. Always trying to make something a little bit different than the rest of builders, and I design + manufacture all I can (Btw, I sell those parts to anyone interested ?).
History of the bike:
My uncle from the south of Spain bought it new more than forty years ago and has been using it since then. Now, he wants to hand over it to his sons, and give the motorcycle a new life.
The aim of the modification was to make two different generations love it (my uncle and my cousins). Therefore, I maintained the classic and elegant look that old R-lines have, but at the same time simplified as much as possible.
Double seat and handlebar (not clip-ons) were a must for them, so my uncle could ride comfortably. And obviously, I restored all the aged parts of the bike, because it had some rust and damages from the years.
Laser cut upper clamp to match the speedo (Daytona Velona)
Original front mudguard cut with original bracket modified
Front suspension lowered
Custom Stainless steel brake lines
Shinko e270 tyres
BMW fork boots
Machined aluminum tank cap
Black aluminum footrest
Exhaust line with dark grey wrap and black matt silencers
Custom subframe and double seat with small rear mudguard
Lithium battery with custom laser cut box under the seat
Stainless steel screws
Lights: Original headlight with Xenon effect lightbulb, Motogadget M-Blaze Pin indicators at the front (at headlight brackets), tiny Led Shin-yo blinkers at the back and Kellerman Atto tail light
Engine: New gaskets, filters and oil
Full street legal (needed in Spain)
Full black powder coating (frame, subframe, rims, swingarm, battery box, upper and handler clamps, headlight brackets, handlebar controls, center stand, etc.
Tank and mudguards painted black with silver design.
Engine covers painted with black wrinkle paint
Aluminum parts sanded by hand and coated
Done by one of my best friends, Juan Llobell (@juanllbbt), who is a professional photographer (I am very lucky). The first location, where we saw the sunrise, is the F1 circuit from Valencia that is no longer in use. And the rest of locations were through the old streets from the city center.
Really looks right. Very nicely done! A lot of the new “hipster” builds leave me cold, but as a BMW R100(76) owner, me likey!