Cam Elkins aka Stories of Bike, spends his life journalling motorcycle culture and the characters behind the custom machines and why they ride. For someone who works in the industry and is surrounded by motorcycles daily, it’s hard to commit to build one, but Cam was ready for his one, the one – this is how Gasoline Motor Co. built The Keeper.
Built from an old BMW r65 that had been tucked away in the garage for years, the brief was to build a forever bike, one with timeless style and clean lines. Upholding the classic BMW style with completely modern controls and handling.
Aesthetically, the build looks almost like a toy, too neat to actually work. The neat custom designed rear hoop & subframe keeps the The engine casings and cast wheels were sand blasted and powder coated. The tank was designed with a deep royal blue and an understated matte grey – in keeping with the vintage BMW brand.
The top clamp by Retrofit Collective fits snugly with the custom fabricated headlight mount and fork brace by TinWorks. The fuel system was overhauled and retuned. Redesigning the riding stance of the motorcycle gives the KPR1 a classic neat cafe racer feel. For just the right balance the front suspension was lowered 40mm and rear was raised 50mm. With a 33 year old machine, custom electrical cables are a must. At Cams request - an electromagnetic locking device for cruise control was designed with custom throttle tube.
The original engine and gearbox were stripped, vapour blasted and rebuilt with all new bearings, seals, gaskets & select performance components. The final drive was restored and powder coated. Two laser etched steel plaques attached to the side of the engine reveal the collaboration between two iconic Australian motorcycle companies; Gasoline Motor Co & Stories of Bike.
Performance-wise, DNA air filters was the choice for optimal filtering efficiency and increased airflow to the engine. The superior technology of Beringer hand controls, switch blocks and callipers create a clean look with full riding control.
Purpose Built Moto supplied the small profile headlight and lighting control unit which complete the modern retro aesthetic, along with Motogadget speedometer, grips and glassless mirrors. Motogadget m.view is a newly patented product – a highly polished aluminium surface becomes reflective – which results in an almost weightless mirror design without a frame or edge.. Kellermann dual function rear brake and signal lights shine bright with perfect visibility. This machine is an ode to quality German engineering technology.
While the simplistic style looks easy to achieve, the build process was anything but. With a 1986 model BMW, almost all of the modern components ordered had to be modified to fit. Each part took longer than expected to source and fit, with a lot of custom fabrication for the plate bracket shock mod. The custom 2:2 stainless exhaust system fitted was with a balance pipe between the cylinders.
The leather seat upholstery, clip on handlebars and Shinko tyre set completes the modern cafe racer look, with a very distinguished vibe. This motorcycle is for sure a keeper, one that preserves it’s 1980’s history, but will be ridden well into the future.
If you have an idea for your very own custom motorcycle Gasoline Motor Co. can help you make it a reality.