Reader’s Ride: Kriss’s 1981 BMW R80

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By John Burns

This week’s exciting Reader’s Ride is in memory of our dearly departed Rocky Stonepebble, who I think claimed to be Scottish, didn’t he? When he wasn’t busy flinging poo through the bars to incite anarchy and hockey. Kriss and his BMW reside in the Scottish highlands.

Hi fellow bike nuts, my name is Kristoffer, living in the highlands of Scotland. I’ve never been one for original bikes, although I do love and respect all choices of motorcycles and styles, I’ve always been one for having something different – which is how you could describe my custom BMW R80 rat/survival bike. She’s a 1981 R80 TIC, former police bike is the history i was told, and has clocked just shy of the 150,000-miles mark on the odometer.

No major modifications, or any welding has been involved so far. I lowered the rear end simply by swapping out for the shortest aftermarket shocks I could find, and the handlebars are off of another custom bobber previously in my possession. Paint is a custom rattle-can job applied in my shed, with a white primer, copper base coat, random variations of tape of varying thicknesses in random patterns across the tank, then camo tone with cardboard stencils to get the overlayed effect.

The extended exhausts use standard joints and a bit of flexi-pipe to some straight-through end cans running up the sissy bar; the sissy bar itself is a slightly modified ebay special. Loud? I’ve only ever been pulled for the bike once by the police, and when I told them I was advised that the age of the bike lets me get away with louder pipes, the cop seemed satisfied. I’m sure he was just bored and wanting a look at the bike! She turns heads wherever she goes – I’m not sure if …read more

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