Restyled 1976 BMW R75/6 Scrambles Vintage Airhead Recipe, Looks Majestic Doing It

Restyled 1976 BMW R75/6 10 photos
Photo: Adam Lerner
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Tim Harney’s professional career started in industrial design many years ago, but he eventually had a change of heart and decided to apply his know-how to a different trade. The guy had been fond of two-wheelers ever since his early childhood, first taking an interest in bicycles and then moving on to their motorized counterparts.
As such, Tim decided to merge this passion with the design and fabrication skills he’d acquired over time, thus entering the world of motorcycle customization. He goes about his daily business in Brooklyn, New York, and what you’re looking at here is the sort of bespoke sorcery that business involves.

For this project, Tim turned to the classic airhead platform from BMW – a 1976 R75/6, to be more exact. His client wanted something that looked the part while requiring minimal maintenance, so the R75 was the logical choice. Sir Harney hit the ground running once the Beemer arrived at his garage, promptly taking everything apart and refurbishing the powertrain where needed.

Gone are the stock Bing carbs and airbox, making room for a pair of Mikuni VM32 inhalers topped with aftermarket pod filters. On the opposite end of the combustion cycle, there’s a custom exhaust system fabricated out of 304-grade stainless steel. It features a two-into-one configuration, ending in a premium Arrow muffler on the left-hand side of the rear wheel.

Tim also fitted a modern electronic ignition setup, along with a fresh battery, diode board, and fuse box. All these goodies are stored inside a handmade tray where the bike’s OEM airbox had once been. Up front, the R75/6 is now perched on a Suzuki DR650’s forks, which were shortened by five inches (127 mm) before going on their new host.

In addition, the repurposed (and rebuilt) shocks of an R75/5 support the rear end. Having discarded the factory subframe, Tim busied himself with manufacturing a bespoke chromoly replacement from scratch. Atop the handmade tubing lies a stylish saddle upholstered in cowhide, and there’s an aluminum fender complete with LED lighting at the back.

One may see a second, high-mounted fender at twelve o’clock, sitting right below a smaller headlamp that’s been transplanted from a Harley-Davidson Sportster. The cockpit flaunts an aftermarket handlebar equipped with Renthal grips, but there are no dials or rear-view mirrors to speak of. Rounding things out in that area is a Domino throttle, joined in close proximity by a Brembo brake master cylinder.

Dual-purpose Kenda tires embrace the motorcycle’s hoops, and the whole package seems to have a bit of an old-school desert sled vibe. Then there’s that gorgeous color scheme; a coat of light grey on the main frame, fork lowers, and wheels, complemented by pale blue on the fuel tank and a black-painted subframe. In conjunction with the brown saddle upholstery, the paintwork is downright breathtaking.
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About the author: Silvian Secara
Silvian Secara profile photo

A bit of an artist himself, Silvian sees two- and four-wheeled machines as a form of art, especially restomods and custom rides. Oh, and if you come across a cafe racer article on our website, it’s most likely his doing.
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