God of Thunder: “Parom” BMW R100R Café Racer

BMW R100R Cafe Racer

For Sale: BMW Café Racer from Earth Motorcycles… 

The BMW R100R appeared in 1992, combining the proven chassis and flat-twin boxer engine of the GS with Showa suspension, Brembo brakes with floating discs, an electronic diagnostic socket, and other modern surprises. Styled as a retro bike, the R100R was actually the most advanced boxer in the near 70-year history of the brand.

BMW R100R Cafe Racer

The magazine writers had a hard time classifying the bike, with Cycle World calling the R100R a “neo-beemer for the 1990s” and Bike a “future retro” — but they loved it nonetheless.

“The R100R is one of the most well-rounded motorcycles that I’ve ridden. It’s light-footed enough to be ridden for sport, torquey and comfortable enough for two-up, around-town use, and with the proper equipment bolted on, is capable enough to serve as a downsize touring bike. The R100R does it all…” -Don Canet, Cycle World

BMW R100R Cafe Racer

Leap ahead 30 years, and this ’93 R100R came into the hands of Ales Tomis of Earth Motorcycles, the Slovakian workshop that’s thundered onto the custom scene with a series of highly executed machines in a sleek, immaculate style — testaments to design, detail, and a perfectionist’s eye. In this case, the brief called for a slim, classic café racer, which can be a challenge with the unwieldy dimensions and configuration of the traditional boxer twin.

BMW R100R Cafe Racer

Ales, however, was more than up to the task, choosing a slim 9-liter tank to accentuate the width and power of those horizontally-opposed cylinders. This tank, a focus point of the build, is a prime example of the man’s attention to detail:

“The small 9L tank which was cut open and rebuilt. The edges were rounded with an English wheel and the cheap-looking tank cap and socket was replaced with a Triumph / Harley-Davidson socket so we could use a much better-looking gas cap. Also, the ugly weld lip around the tank was completely removed.”

BMW R100R Cafe Racer

That’s not all. The single fuel tap, which under-utilizes the capacity of an already small tank, was replaced with electromagnetic valves so fuel can come from both sides of the tank, and the unit was pressurized after welding to ensure no leakage.

BMW R100R Cafe Racer

The underside of the tank harbors a LiFePo rectifier, BMW ignition, and new smaller coil, and Ales did his best to keep wiring to a minimum.

“The charging port, a USB port, and three main fuses are all stacked on one piece of metal sheet welded on the frame, so no more cables hanging from the bike.”

BMW R100R Cafe Racer

The shape of the tank dictated the lines of the new subframe and seat, which has the traditional café racer bum stop.

“The whole seat subframe is bent from one piece of 25mm tube on each side. The tubing follows the shape of the tank from the L and R perspective. Also from the top, the seat corresponds to the shape of the front of the tank.”

BMW R100R Cafe Racer

The hubs and new front discs were Cerakote’d black, then relaced with new stainless spokes, and the rims wrapped in Avon Roadmaster II rubber. The 41mm front forks were shortened 7cm and the new rear shock is a YSS unit the same length as the original (410mm).

BMW R100R Cafe Racer

The cockpit was a challenge, as the Earth Motorcycles team wanted to use an internal throttle that necessitated 1-inch bars:

“Since the clip-on handlebars are 1-inch, to use the Brembo levers was a big problem. So we used Discacciati levers with rectangular reservoirs. We decided for 1-inch bars because of the internal throttle we used. And because of the L-R symmetry, we swapped the wire clutch for a hydraulic one. Now the bike looks almost symmetrical from the top view.”

BMW R100R Cafe Racer

The bike uses a full suite of Motogadget products, with a Motogadget Mini sitting in a Rebel Moto triple tree clamp and the M-unit Blue hiding under the tank. Ales is a big fan of the trick Rebel Moto switchgear:

“The handlebar buttons are also Rebel Moto and I love them personally. They have two independent functions. The button and the LED control light; the light doesn’t need to correspond to the function of the button. For example, we made this setup. The starter button glows red when the engine is not running. The red color corresponds to low oil pressure, so in the dark, the rider sees where the starter button is. After the engine starts the light is gone because the pressure is OK.”

BMW R100R Cafe Racer

The indicators are Highsider and the headlight is an LED 5.75-inch Daytona, which is attached to a CNC aluminum custom-made bracket that covers the upper fork stanchions. The side stand was originally a part of the engine guard they didn’t use, and the whole frame was shaved of unused brackets, sandblasted, and then powder-coated.

BMW R100R Cafe Racer

The footpegs have been relocated slightly back and up so the seat position is a bit sportier, and the rear brake cable was replaced with a stainless steel rod.

“It was kind of a challenge to make it work, utilize the brake switch, and still look good.”

The exhaust slip-ons are a type that Ales knows to work well with this kind of setup. The carburetors were fully rebuilt and given K&N air filters, and the top caps powder-coated. Says Ales:

“The top caps are powder-coated with wrinkle paint because there was chrome plating. This plating was no good and was peeling off and had to be masked and covered. Therefore the wrinkle paint. There is no way to get rid of the chrome plating from the aluminum without damaging the aluminum itself. The chromed carb bowls were surprisingly OK.”

BMW R100R Cafe Racer

The carbs, engine, gearbox, swingarm and final drive were vapor-blasted.

“These parts have been completely rebuilt and serviced with new seals, gaskets, O-rings, piston rings + 150 parts as always… Most of the bolts and nuts are new stainless steel ones. Special parts are either new or repaired and zinc plated.”

BMW R100R Cafe Racer

We love how Earth Motorcycles often uses Slovak terms or names for their builds. In this case, the nickname “Parom” is the Slovak equivalent of “Perun,” the Slavic god of sky, thunder, justice, and war — the mightiest god in the Slavic pantheon. We can’t think of a better name for this R100R.

If you’re interested in a BMW café racer from one of the best workshops in Europe, “Parom” is currently for sale. Contact [email protected] for more information.

A special thanks goes out to Marian Svitek for photography.

More Details

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Earth Motorcycles: www.earthmotorcycles.com
Instagram: @earthmotorcycles
Photographer: Marian Svitek – www.mariansvitek.com

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  1. By far, in my view, the best looking BMW Boxer I have seen.

    • Hi Fabian.
      Thanks a lot! I think the BMW airheads are the best donor bikes for customizations. They have three magic marketing letters B, M and W and very appealing boxer engine.

  2. Frank Traynor

    Cracking Boxer

  3. Lars Carlsson

    Thats one stunning good looking boxer you created…!!! Well done…

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