Hommage: Kingston’s BMW R100 pays tribute to Bobby Haas

Bobby Haas left an enormous gap within the {custom} scene when he handed away unexpectedly final yr. Because the proprietor and curator of the Haas Moto Museum, he was a bonafide patron of the artwork of bike customization. And in that position, he shaped deep private relationships with the {custom} builders that helped to fill his museum’s halls.

With three of his builds already within the Haas Museum, Dirk Oehlerking of Kingston Customized had change into an in depth pal of Bobby’s. So this impossibly elegant BMW R100 is especially pricey to him. Not solely is it the longest {custom} boxer we’ve ever seen, however it was the final Kingston construct that Bobby commissioned.

BMW R100 for the Haas Museum by Kingston Custom
“I mentioned a brand new venture with Bobby and Stacey [Mayfield], his life companion and museum director, in July 2021,” Dirk tells us. “At the moment, I didn’t know what it will change into—all that was clear was that it was going to be the longest BMW R100, and it was going to be Kingston’s fourth motorbike within the Haas Museum.”

“A Kingston household; associated, however every member individualistic. That was my project from Bobby and Stacey.”

BMW R100 for the Haas Museum by Kingston Custom
Dirk began the venture the identical approach he often does—by furiously sketching out the numerous designs that had been milling round in his head. Then he stripped the bike down, and arrange massive cardboard sheets in opposition to the chassis, to sketch every thing out at a 1:1 scale.

Subsequent, Dirk fleshed out his concepts with development foam. Inspiration got here from the Thirties, “when excessive pace, aerodynamics and magnificence had been mixed.” By now the venture was heading in an artwork deco streamliner route, and had earned nickname ‘Eleganza.’

BMW R100 for the Haas Museum by Kingston Custom
As soon as Dirk had finalized the BMW’s silhouette, he despatched a photograph to Bobby, who replied enthusiastically. However 4 days later, Dirk bought a devastating cellphone name from Stacey informing him of Bobby’s sudden passing.

“I used to be frozen, shocked,” he says, “I couldn’t and wouldn’t imagine it. Such a beautiful particular person is now not with us? I sank into deep mourning.”

BMW R100 for the Haas Museum by Kingston Custom
“When Bobby was buried, I used to be locked down with a video feed from the funeral, and couldn’t say goodbye in particular person. I lined the venture with a fabric and couldn’t work on it for a month, the grief and ache had been an excessive amount of.”

“After just a few weeks I obtained a video name from Stacey—it was an exceptionally emotional dialog from each side. Stacey advised me that the household had determined to let the Eleganza venture be accomplished, as it will have been in Bobby’s finest curiosity.”

BMW R100 for the Haas Museum by Kingston Custom
Dirk pulled the fabric off the bike, however his connection to the ‘Eleganza’ idea had been severed. He reached out to Stacey and advised her that the venture wanted a brand new identify. Which may sound frivolous, but when you recognize Dirk, you’ll know that he locations a variety of worth in names.

“Eleganza turned ‘Hommage’—a tribute to Bobby Haas,” he says. “It needed to be one thing extraordinary—a murals, a motorbike sculpture.”

BMW R100 for the Haas Museum by Kingston Custom
His ardour reignited, Dirk started the arduous process of bringing Bobby’s Hommage to life. We’ve seen the German builder sort out this artwork deco type earlier than, however we’ve by no means seen him take the idea to this excessive.

The R100’s elongated full-body fairing was hand-formed out of two mm thick aluminum. Divided into 4 major sections, it’s truly remarkably straightforward to take aside. Dirk additionally fabricated a pair of entrance wheel covers to present the fairing a seamless really feel, however designed them to show with the wheel.

BMW R100 for the Haas Museum by Kingston Custom
The metalwork is spectacular sufficient, however what actually places this streamliner excessive is the smorgasbord of tasteful particulars. Up entrance is a custom-made BMW-style kidney grill, with a headlight hidden behind it. Out again, you’ll discover the taillight from a classic BMW 700 automobile.

Poking out from the facet panels are the boxer’s distinctive cylinder heads, hooked as much as {custom} air intakes that transfer the carbs to underneath the bodywork. The personalized foot controls, key ignition and choke are all neatly built-in too. And if you happen to take a more in-depth have a look at the entrance wheel covers, you’ll discover small cutouts to entry the brake calipers, in case you should bleed the system.

BMW R100 for the Haas Museum by Kingston Custom
Up prime are a set of handmade handlebars, fitted with aftermarket levers and grips. The rider seems down on a vintage-looking speedo bearing Kingston’s emblem, and a leather-based tank belt that matches the seat. The chromed mirror housing comes from a Porsche 356 Speedster.

Different trendy touches embody BMW roundels on the edges and entrance, and a set of chromed fishtail mufflers mounted to handmade exhaust headers.

BMW R100 for the Haas Museum by Kingston Custom
Many of the donor bike remains to be intact underneath the bodywork, with just a few notable modifications. The inventory gas tank’s been changed by a home made aluminum reservoir, holding three gallons. And the swingarm’s been prolonged, with a pair of inflexible struts changing the rear suspension.

A swathe of black paint, complemented by gold stripes, takes this swish BMW over the end line. And earlier than you ask: sure, it’s rideable.

BMW R100 for the Haas Museum by Kingston Custom
“The bike runs and is not only a present bike,” Dirk confirms. “I repeat: the bike might be pushed and in addition steered. After all, it has a big turning circle—however you solely want that whereas maneuvering at low speeds, not whereas driving.”

Regardless of this, the Hommage seemingly gained’t rack up too many miles. It’s destined for the Haas Moto Museum, the place it’ll take its place as a tribute to a pricey pal of the {custom} motorbike scene.

Kingston Customized | Fb | Instagram | Pictures by M. Eichfeld

BMW R100 for the Haas Museum by Kingston Custom

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