Bringing you the world's best cafe racers, trackers, scramblers, bobbers & custom motorcycles.

BMW R80/7

Posted on November 11, 2010 by Scott in Brat, Classic. 14 comments

Adam Kay from the U.K. was looking for a donor bike that he could customize and ride everyday – he calls it his ‘midlife crisis’ project. After a little bit of research he came across Victory Motorcycles in Camden London. Rex the owner specializes in BMWs and classic British iron. “Rex had a R80/7 for sale so that’s what I got” said Adam. “The style of my custom came from looking at a racing Guzzi I saw on Bike EXIF. I did all the work myself under the guidance of Rex and as I only had two days a week that I could dedicate to the job, it took me 8 months to customize the R80/7″. Here’s how Adam describes his ‘midlife crisis project’:

“I wanted a single seat, a long rear mudguard and a short chopped front mudguard like a bobber. I choose not to paint the tank after I had spent ages stripping off the old paint and filler after all that effort I didn’t want to cover it up again with paint! I also wanted it to have no decals, because to me a boxer is clearly a BMW, so it doesn’t need any info on the tank.

“I began with a total strip down to the frame. The frame had all parts that were not needed cut off. Battery box, plastic covers hooks, seat hinges and a few more bits. The frame, subframe, swinging arm, side stand, top yoke and wheels were powder coated in satin black. Most nuts, bolts and other chromed parts were re-plated in a dull chrome or were replaced with stainless steel parts. The brake system was replaced from an under the tank unit to a handlebar mounted reservoir system. A second brembo was added. 2 new stainless discs replaced the single steel disc and steel braided hoses are used. The engine and gearbox was painted with black heat resistant paint. New shorter and loud exhausts are used. Graphite impregnated exhaust wrap for the header pipes to give the bike a meaner look. New alloy rear mudguard cut to fit – original front mudguard cut to new size and shape painted matt black. Replaced the touring seat with a customized single scrambler seat. The tank was then stripped to the steel and hand sanded, then a clear coat of lacquer was used to seal it.

“I changed the R80/7 from what I thought could be seen as a rather dull machine to a thing of old school rebellion. I wanted a machine that could be ridden every day and one that looks as cool as any custom. I think this BMW does just that. I also wanted to challenge myself as I have never done anything like this before so this could be my “midlife crisis” project. I think I have done a great job on this motorcycle and have a commission to customize a R80/7 to look like mine. I’m also working on a new luxurious R80 custom which should be ready next year.”

Adam is now working on his next project, a ‘lux’ R80 custom which we look forward to sharing with you when finished. You can see more build pics and info on his site Untitled Motorcycles.

  • Excellent build, I like the no label idea (of course it's a BMW!),

  • Cosmo

    Great looking bike. Love the tank, seat and fender combination.

  • KIK

    Were are the" after" pics???

  • Cosmo

    Kik, have you seen a normal R80/7!!!?

  • KIK

    @ Cosmo,..hello ,.as a matter of fact 2 years ago i had the pleasure of helping on the restoration of a r90 with a friend of mine, the costumer's father had passed away so the son wanted the machine to look like the day it rolled out the factory, it was stripped down completely and redone to the last bolt ,(electrical system was a nightmare!!) i see that machine as a honda goldwing, when you take too much off it, it kind of looses it's purpose,…although the r80 lacks some of the bodywork of the 90 it is still basically a tourer , when i saw the bike here i just saw an "unfinished" bike. if this is what Mr. Kay was trying to accomplish then he did very well… to be honest that seat is the only thing that does not do it for me, and if he was not gonna put the bmw badges ( if he emails me ill be happy to send him a pair) at least fill the indents..but that's just me

  • KIK

    a badge from any BMW's car hood fits perfect in the indent since is the same part #..

  • Scott

    @KIK I think he is going for that raw look, similar to the wrenchmonkees R65…

  • Andrew

    What'd rock would be a set of custom badges in the indent. Maybe a logo designed around the owners last name etc. Now THAT would be interesting. I thought the same thing when I saw the wrenchmonkees BMW…

  • Adam

    Hello All, thanks for all the comments. About the look of my custom I was going for the raw look as Scott mentioned, that's how I like my motorcycles. There are things I would change if I was doing it all again however I'm very happy with the out come. I have looked into a logo idea using the name untitled motorcycles when I do it I will post it on my blog – facebook. Our next project is a much more "lux" custom and the indents will be filled in along with a great logo on the tank. Look out for details on the blog and facebook. Again thanks for all your interest. I like to know what people really think. Adam

  • KIK

    @ SCOTT , looking at the wrench monkees r65 reinforced my opinion on the seat. @ ADAM no spot for a hardbelly's soft parts? lol good job !!

  • Chris

    Nah, i like this bike more than the wrenchmonkee R65. You did a hellover good job on the 80/7..
    why did BMW quit building those bikes and started to sell this crappy GS?

  • Dave

    I'd tap that.

  • Jr

    Rad ride

  • David Centofante

    what speedometer is on there?