1973 BMW R75/5 ‘Lil Doom’
Words by Martin Hodgson.
This is the story of three friends who get by on wheels, good looks and attitude to burn. They dress the same and they work together but all perform very different functions for their automotive crazed owner Stan. “Von Doom”, Lil Doom” and “The Raft” are a car, bike and trailer combo that’ll leave any motorhead wanting their own and it all started when Stan decided his newly completed 2014 SEMA bound BMW show car needed a little something more, a motorcycle to match and a trailer for the journey. But this is Pipeburn, so let’s start with the little bike that could, a classic BMW called “Lil Doom”!
As Stan explains “Luckily, my friend had a 1973 R75/5 that he had toyed with selling. After talking to him about the concept, he knew it would be in good hands.” Having previously worked with gun builder Jay from Lossa Engineering on another build it made perfect sense to use his skills again on the Airhead. This is a frame off build, completely stripped back and disassembled so everything could be done properly. Jay de-tabbed the frame and then built a new sub-frame to hold the custom leather and denim seat. Desperately keen to use his Crafty B Mini Racer fuel cap Stan picked an R100 fuel tank which was dimple dye recess cut into the tank to allow for the cap to have a more flush look. The front and rear fenders are bobbed items pulled from a CB350 and just like the tank the metal work is absolutely flawless.
The Shop in Culver City, California renowned for amazing paint work and their love of BMW’s painted the tins with BMW Mineral White with a dual pinstripe using an Audi charcoal grey and Porsche Irish green. The same charcoal and Irish green treatment was sprayed onto the wheels to complete the look. With paint and body work so good it would be a shame to leave the look of the engine area cluttered, particularly when working with an airhead. So a cast aluminium cover was sourced from BMW2Valve.com that covers the starter and airbox area, leaving a generous amount of negative space and further highlighting that stunning R100 tank.
And that starter and airbox combo, in the quest for a sleeker look and improved performance both were sent to the scrap bin! The airbox is replaced by a set of K&N pod filters inhaling the ambient air while exhale duties are taken care of by a shortened factory exhaust that is dipped in black chrome with heatshield Cobra exhaust wraps. Power is one way to improve performance, weight removal another and the starter motor and standard battery have both been ditched, the bike is now kick start only with a tiny Shorai lithium ion battery fitted in place. Handling wasn’t ignored either, the standard front forks now house Progressive Suspension springs while the rear utilises 412 series rear shocks. Renthal Ultra Low bars take care of steering duties and Stan holds onto a pair of Tommaselli grips.
“Von Doom” is just about the coolest tow vehicle you’re going to find, a 2014 BMW 328IX Sport Wagon. The body’s curves come courtesy of a full BMW M Performance Aero package that was painted, just like the rest of the package, by The Shop in Culver City in the White, Grey and Green colour combo. Just like everything else the Thule Sonic XL Roof box is colour matched and pinstriped and sits on a Thule AeroBlade Edge rack system. Slamming the whole thing to the ground is a AccuAir E-Level Air suspension setup that tucks the 20 inch HRE 501 vintage series wheels wrapped in Toyo tyres well up into the guards. “Von Doom” improves its towing capacity with an MXP quad exhaust system and a Dual software tune and standard brakes on a tow vehicle just won’t do so R1 Concept rotors are clamped by an M Performance big brake kit.
Finally there is the trailer, “The Raft” is a hand built one off single bike trailer sporting custom fenders in the same Mineral White with Charcoal and Irish Green pinstriping. The wheels match the wagon, this time measuring a trailer crazy 18×8.5 inches and again Toyo’s quality Proxes 4 plus hoops grip the road. The final touch is a beauty, having gone to all this trouble to build the perfect combo would you really want to be humping around a bike ramp to take “Lil Doom” off “The Raft” with all of that expensive paint? Of course not, so just press the button in the cabin of “Von Doom” and a second air suspension system lowers the whole thing to the ground for deadly cool looks and easy bike removal.
Every now and then something comes along that changes the game and Stan’s trifecta of custom creations does exactly that. And if you’re anything like me, by the time you’ve read this article and soaked in the fantastic photography you’re planning just how you could possibly top something this cool!