When you have to take the decision to tear apart a bike to rebuild everything, some bikes make better donor than others. When this BMW R75/5 arrived in La Manufacture's workshop (back in the time), it was a no-brainer, the bike was literally in 5 bits – three boxes of parts, one engine and one frame – and was allegedly “complete”, it didn’t take long to figure out that a classic restoration would be more than challenging.
We took this as an opportunity to rebuild everything, and decided to upgrade some parts of the bike, starting with the chassis. Rear suspensions were provided by EMC – our French experts in terms of suspensions – and the front fork came from a R100/7. Some new tubes and progressive springs were installed so the Scrambler could handle some off-road rides from time to time. The main advantage of this fork being the two disks brake on the front wheel, powered by a Beringer master cylinder, we had now enough brake power to envisage a proper engine upgrade.
When we started to work on the engine, we realised quickly that the bike had known a massive accident in the past as half of the stud bolts were teared off on the left side of the engine. We then decided to find a new donor engine and completely rebuilt it. We started by changing all the shabby parts and installed some brand new ones as a full Siebenrock kit – upgrading the cylinders from 750 to 1000cm3 and releasing some welcomed new horses. We also replaced the original gearbox with a 5 gears gearbox from a BMW R100RS and re-thought completely the electricity of the engine. A brand new electronic ignition was suplied by Kennedy, coupled to a new Valeo Starter (converted to 8 teeth to fit with the heavy flywheel) and a bespoke simplified wire.
Thanks to a Motogadget M-Unit that we installed under the seat, we rewired completely the bike, starting from a blank sheet. The contactor and start button are now located on the left top of the engine. The handlebar was equipped with Motogadget buttons and Beringer levers and a Motogadget Motoscope mini was installed to complete the range of accessories on this bike.
The aesthetic of the bike has not been outdone, we used a toaster tank (without the fairings) from an older R75/5 that we painted in Fjord Green (factory colour of the old 356 Speedster Porsches). The rear sub-frame was made following the shape of a surf board and the custom seat received a nice handmade patina. The two headlights on the side are Marshal 880 fog lights found on an Old Alpine Renault rally car. To emphasise the modern character of the bike, a Baja Designs spot light was installed on the front number plate and two tiny Rizomas rear and indicator lights were fitted under the seat to complete the lighting scheme.
The Scrambler has been the daily bike of Charles for almost two years now, and according to him and the smile on his face, we can acknowledge how cool this bike is to ride!