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‘73 BMW R60/5 – Dream Wheels Heritage


Posted on April 30th, by Andrew in Brat, Classic. 11 comments

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Written by Tim Holdup.

Let’s face it, building a custom motorcycle can be a financially draining task. But couple that with a post-GFC economy and it can really be a feat. Yet these are the very factors that can also lead builders to think outside the square and develop innovative, alternative fabrication techniques. This is how “Copper”, a 1973 BMW R60 was bought to life. Meet Dream Wheels Heritage, a shop run by Hélder Moura, a marketer from Portugal and Jose Miguel Martins, an automotive mechanic with 30 years experience.

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She’s named “Copper”, with tongue firmly planted in cheek. Not only does the build use copper plating throughout, but the R60 also happens to be a former police bike. “A dream donor bike”, in the words of Hélder.

“Copper” features a hand-made subframe section and with the rest of the frame this piece sees all the welds hidden which provides a unique one-piece appearance. Mounting to the subframe is a one-off seat. It’s complemented by a matching set of tank pads, with themselves reference the numerous other uses of copper plating throughout the build.

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Receiving a set of 41mm forks and twin brake rotor setup from a Honda VTR 1000 which a more solid appearance and provides much improved braking, the front end is finished off with the use of a 1950’s pioneer fog light modified into a headlight. Suspending the rear is a set of new shocks which also sees the reservoirs and lock nuts plated to keep up the consistency in copper usage througout. “Copper” also sees the use of black 18 inch rims front and rear laced up with copper plated spokes and wrapped up in a set of Firestone deluxe champion rubber.

Breathing life into the 600cc boxer twin engine is a set of Bing carburetors to suit an R100, which have been mounted with a set of hand-made manifolds along with K and N conical filters, a 2 into 2 exhaust system with copper plated fixtures is the exhaust of choice by Dream Wheels Heritage. A hydraulic clutch has also been utilised for smooth consistent clutch operation.

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With such a strong first build, be sure to keep an eye out for the economically bright future of Portugal’s Dream Wheels Heritage.





  • Jacob Speis

    I like that they’ve done a lot to make the copper belong to the build to the build. I feel like in the past few years I’ve seen plenty of bikes with a bunch of copper that seems to be thrown on as a gimmicky afterthought, but this really seems more cohesive than most.

  • SwampBadger

    It’s nice, but is anybody else getting a little bored of BMW builds? They all end up looking the same to me. I like the copper accents on this one, but take those away and it’s just another bog-standard BMW build…

  • MAJOR

    I had the pleasure to follow at distance the construction of this one of a kind bike. Few Portuguese customized bike builders are setting the bar high and these two have made it again! The quality of materials used, the taste and the coherence of the set, the mechanic patience…. (have you heard that frame had all the visible welds removed??!)… I am sure we all will be keeping hearing about them… Congrats Helder & Miguel…

  • blackbird

    What do y’all make of those carbs? Never seen anything twist around like that before.

  • Zigue Smarty

    How does the carburation system work with such a position for the carburetors ? Please, give some feed-backs…

    • jlgace

      I’ve seen the longer intakes done on v-twins and I believe at that time I was told it may adversely affect throttle response yet improve fuel atomization and bottom end torque. It may have been necessary when adapting the carbs from the bike’s larger sibling as mentioned in the article. Large carb bore is of no benefit if the engine can’t use the intake charge. The powerband typically goes up the rpm range as the diameter of that intake tube increases also, velocity being the factor. Someone feel free to correct me, I’ve never played with this myself. In short, the long skinny tubes may be compensating for the oversized carbs. Looks neat anyway.

      • James Kelly

        It might also just be that they got sick of banging their shins on the carbs. Standard placement of the carbs on older boxers – particularly short wheel base boxers – has your shins hitting the carbs all the time. I’ve had more than a few bruises from it. Probably even worse with the bigger carbs. It’s one of the reasons (as well as high speed weave) BMW lengthened the wheelbase in 73

        • Shane

          The long runner will help tune the intake and generally helps torque development low down in the rpm range. It looks a similar length to where the original run to the airbox would have been but placing the carb at the start of the track reduces the chance of over fueling which happens when the intake pulses revert back through the carb then back into the engine on the next pulse.

          • arnold

            I’m thinking that the ram air effect would cause a ‘stall’ in such a long tube at higher speed. Jetting might be tough. Not running Bonneville here, so torque at cruising speed should be good enough for the intent.
            Looks cool though.

  • revdub

    I love the front view of this bike. Don’t get me wrong, it looks great from other views as well, but that front end is just mean.

  • arnold

    The ‘more pictures’ spot on their website is well worth the trip. The venturi-ized intake headers for the carbies are an idea that will take some thought. Without some flow bench numbers quien sabe, kemo sabe.