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 12 months. Because the proprietor and curator of the Haas Moto Museum, he was a bonafide patron of the artwork of motorbike customization. And in that function, 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 turn into an in depth buddy 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, nevertheless it was the final Kingston construct that Bobby commissioned.

BMW R100 for the Haas Museum by Kingston Custom
“I mentioned a brand new mission with Bobby and Stacey [Mayfield], his life associate and museum director, in July 2021,” Dirk tells us. “At the moment, I didn’t know what it might turn 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 bike within the Haas Museum.”

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

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

Subsequent, Dirk fleshed out his concepts with building foam. Inspiration got here from the Nineteen Thirties, “when excessive pace, aerodynamics and magnificence have been mixed.” By now the mission 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 telephone 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 an exquisite individual is 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 individual. I coated the mission with a material and couldn’t work on it for a month, the grief and ache have been an excessive amount of.”

“After a number of weeks I obtained a video name from Stacey—it was an exceptionally emotional dialog from either side. Stacey advised me that the household had determined to let the Eleganza mission be accomplished, as it might have been in Bobby’s greatest curiosity.”

BMW R100 for the Haas Museum by Kingston Custom
Dirk pulled the material off the bike, however his connection to the ‘Eleganza’ idea had been severed. He reached out to Stacey and advised her that the mission wanted a brand new title. Which may sound frivolous, but when you recognize Dirk, you’ll know that he locations quite a lot 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 activity of bringing Bobby’s Hommage to life. We’ve seen the German builder deal with this artwork deco fashion 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 predominant sections, it’s really remarkably simple to take aside. Dirk additionally fabricated a pair of entrance wheel covers to provide 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 automotive.

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

BMW R100 for the Haas Museum by Kingston Custom
Up high are a set of handmade handlebars, fitted with aftermarket levers and grips. The rider appears 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
A lot of the donor bike continues to be intact beneath the bodywork, with a number of notable modifications. The inventory gasoline 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 sleek 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 isn’t just a present bike,” Dirk confirms. “I repeat: the bike may be pushed and likewise steered. After all, it has a big turning circle—however you solely want that whereas maneuvering at low speeds, not whereas using.”

Regardless of this, the Hommage doubtless received’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 an expensive buddy of the {custom} bike scene.

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

BMW R100 for the Haas Museum by Kingston Custom



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