Written by Tim Holdup.

Let’s face it, building a custom motorcycle can be a financially draining task. But couple that with a post-GFC economy and it can really be a feat. Yet these are the very factors that can also lead builders to think outside the square and develop innovative, alternative fabrication techniques. This is how “Copper”, a 1973 BMW R60 was bought to life. Meet Dream Wheels Heritage, a shop run by Hélder Moura, a marketer from Portugal and Jose Miguel Martins, an automotive mechanic with 30 years experience.


She’s named “Copper”, with tongue firmly planted in cheek. Not only does the build use copper plating throughout, but the R60 also happens to be a former police bike. “A dream donor bike”, in the words of Hélder.

“Copper” features a hand-made subframe section and with the rest of the frame this piece sees all the welds hidden which provides a unique one-piece appearance. Mounting to the subframe is a one-off seat. It’s complemented by a matching set of tank pads, with themselves reference the numerous other uses of copper plating throughout the build.


Receiving a set of 41mm forks and twin brake rotor setup from a Honda VTR 1000 which a more solid appearance and provides much improved braking, the front end is finished off with the use of a 1950’s pioneer fog light modified into a headlight. Suspending the rear is a set of new shocks which also sees the reservoirs and lock nuts plated to keep up the consistency in copper usage througout. “Copper” also sees the use of black 18 inch rims front and rear laced up with copper plated spokes and wrapped up in a set of Firestone deluxe champion rubber.

Breathing life into the 600cc boxer twin engine is a set of Bing carburetors to suit an R100, which have been mounted with a set of hand-made manifolds along with K and N conical filters, a 2 into 2 exhaust system with copper plated fixtures is the exhaust of choice by Dream Wheels Heritage. A hydraulic clutch has also been utilised for smooth consistent clutch operation.


With such a strong first build, be sure to keep an eye out for the economically bright future of Portugal’s Dream Wheels Heritage.