In most major markets around the world, manufacturers abide by EU standards and the most recent changes have hit the motorcycle industry hard. Euro 5 regulations have effectively killed off the once popular 600cc Super Sport class, seen plenty of models dropped for good and forced others to be changed to water-cooling. In some nations, those changes also apply to non-new vehicles and pose a big challenge to customisers looking to push the envelope. But rather than be put off or throw in the towel, the young crew at Germany’s Pfalzbock-Konzept have embraced the challenge. In doing so they’ve not only built this mega mixed-media BMW K100RS but earned the government approval to go along with it.
That’s no easy task anywhere in the world, with registration for a motorcycle no longer a case of turning up, showing that the bike works (sort of) and heading home, happy as can be. In Germany, the task is even harder with the strict TUV certification process requiring the motorcycle and individual custom parts to be checked, tested and certified. But for Pfalzbock-Konzept it was a task they actually looked forward to and when you hear about their background you know why. “We are two mechanical engineering students (22 y.o.) who ride motorcycles since we are 16. When we turned 18, there was no new bike that caught us. So we began to build our own individual bikes.”
Two young mechanical engineers are hardly going to turn up a challenge and for one of the extra touches, Peter explains they had another member of the team, “my sister, an upcoming joiner master, we worked out the plan for a material-mix between aluminium/stainless steel and wood and were excited from this idea.” Knowing the path forward the crew just needed the donor bike and managed to find this 1992 model still in the hands of its original owner. A well looked after K bike is a fine thing to have, so rather than having to stress about endless problems to fix, they stripped it down and got to work.
To make every surface as clean as can be, they used dry ice blasting, which is an excellent method of waterless cleaning, and had the engine and frame looking like new. Knowing what the design called for, the back end of the frame was cut off and a new rear hoop was welded into place before the whole thing was given a new coat of gloss black. The wheels too were cleaned up, painted black, and then shod in a new set of Michelin rubber. Now work could begin on turning it all into a rolling chassis and the front forks were stripped down and rebuilt back to original factory specifications. Then the boys used their engineering skills to design and fabricate a one-off fork brace.
The rear suspension was a more simple task, with a Wilbers blue line shock picked up and fitted to the bike. With the roller ready, they raided the BMW parts bin and came away with a set of S1000RR rearsets that they then reworked to fit the K bike and give the rider far superior comfort and control. To match that new riding position and with a Cafe styled bike in mind, new LSL clip-ons were picked up and help to dictate that long and low style. This sparked a brainstorming session as to how best to finish the front of the bike and it all starts with a pair of front fenders.
The first is a cut-down item that mounts in the most conventional of ways, keeping crap from the front tyre off the rest of the bike. The second threw convention out of the window as it became the primary component in the new “screened off” front look. A set of mounts was made, in the style of mini fairing stays, and then the fender was cut to fit. A set of wholes was drilled through it to allow the LED projector lights to shine through before it was all bolted up and they had one hell of a unique front end on their BMW.
The big tank gets a set of small forward side covers and then all of the new metalwork was stripped of any paint, given a brushed look and cleared over the top. The finish is perfect for what was to come and with so much already done to the bike, the time had arrived. “Almost the last part was to carve the rear hump and the speedometer holder by hand out of French nutwood in order to fit perfectly on the frame.” You can’t argue with the finished result, the lines are simply stunning and the look is unlike anything else you’re likely to see. A template was made in the process and means they could replicate the design in other materials too.
Turning their attention to the engine, it was given a new lick of paint and then treated to new seals and gaskets. All of the fluids and filters were replaced, the brakes overhauled and a box was built to house the lithium battery. But to pass the TUV the exhaust is one of the most critical components. Ebay knock-off end cans won’t get through and most aftermarket units fail the emissions test, so instead, the crew underwent the incredible task of homologating their own creation.
It is yet another superb achievement for the young team and with an Alcantara seat stitched up to finish off their K bike it was ready to ride. This being Project 4, they’re off to a flying start and already displaying design and execution beyond their years; clearly Pfalzbock-Konzept is here to stay.