Shining Instance – Mitch Witkamp’s BMW K1100LT Cafe Racer

Shining Example – Mitch Witkamp’s BMW K1100LT Cafe Racer

The bar has definitely been raised in the custom motorcycle scene. If you’re planning on impressing anyone a bolt-on seat, clip-on handlebars and a set of Firestones aren’t going to cut it anymore. If you want your custom creation to get you invited to display at a custom show or to win you any prizes you’ll need to pull out all the stops. Last week Roland Sands Designs announced the winners of their Dream Build Off. The competition offered people […]

The post Shining Example – Mitch Witkamp’s BMW K1100LT Cafe Racer appeared first on Return of the Cafe Racers.

The bar has unquestionably been raised within the customized motorbike scene. If you happen to’re making plans on impressing any individual a bolt-on seat, clip-on handlebars and a suite of Firestones aren’t going to chop it anymore. If you need your customized introduction to get you invited to show at a customized display or to win you any prizes you’ll wish to pull out the entire stops.

Ultimate week Roland Sands Designs introduced the winners in their Dream Construct Off. The contest introduced other folks the risk to win some improbable prizes together with 3 emblem new bikes. As you’d be expecting there have been numerous other folks desperate to win and the contest was once fierce. Among the hopefuls was once Mitch Witkamp, a customized fanatic with a handful of motorbike builds below his belt. Spurred on through the prize providing he pieced in combination an unbelievable K1100LT Cafe Racer that very deservingly took out first position within the 750cc to 1199cc magnificence. After being as inspired through the motorbike because the RSD staff obviously was once, we contacted Mitch to speak about his two-wheeled obsession and the construct of this improbable BMW cafe racer.

Witkamp BMW K1100LT Cafe Racer

Witkamp BMW K1100LT Cafe Racer

“I grew up in Utah surrounded by 4-wheelers and dirt bikes,” says Mitch. “My first real love for motorcycles started when I was in college in 2012 when I bought my first motorcycle. It was a 2006 Honda Shadow 600. I rode the bike for 6 months and then wanted to sell it because I was kinda over it. I called up my brother and told him I was going to sell the bike and he told me I needed to first check out a ‘bobber’. My response was, ‘what is a bobber?’ He sent me a few pictures and I was hooked.”

Despite the fact that Mitch was once new to the customized motorbike scene he’d grown up running on vehicles. So with a well-stocked storage and a succesful talent set, he tore the Honda right down to construct his first actual bobber. Within the years that adopted, Mitch changed the Shadow a number of instances sooner than striking in combination a ’76 CB750F Cafe Racer after which a CX500 cafe/game. He was once properly and actually hooked.

Witkamp BMW K1100LT Cafe Racer

Witkamp BMW K1100LT Cafe Racer

Mitch’s 1995 BMW K1100LT cafe racer has been a number of years within the making. The unique driver at the back of the undertaking got here after serving to a chum to construct his customized K100. Quickly afterwards Mitch bought the ’95 K1100LT from a fastidious proprietor who had stored the motorbike in pristine situation. However the pandemic and the entire demanding situations it introduced slowed the growth of the construct. But if RSD introduced the 2022 Dream Construct Off it gave him the inducement he had to get the motorbike completed.

Witkamp BMW K1100LT Cafe Racer

Witkamp BMW K1100LT Cafe Racer

Like many customized fanatics, Mitch unearths inspiration within the paintings of others. His builds have a tendency to be a mixture of kinds and main points he’s found out on-line. With the BMW then again, he made up our minds to do issues slightly another way.

“I wanted to push my fabrication abilities all while adding a few details that I’ve never really seen on a bike,” he says. “I knew I wanted to introduce some LEDs and acrylic panels. Having the bike transform at night was always a goal.”

We’ve all observed the ones banal neon glow kits that had been common within the mid-nineties. At the moment they’re about as interesting as exhaust wrap and handlebar tassels. Fortunately Mitch’s LED thought was once in an entire different league.

All through the day the acrylic panels within the motorbike’s tail, subframe, aspect panels, fork shrouds and underneath the BMW roundels mix seamlessly into the uncooked aluminium bodywork. But if the solar is going down they light up to change into the motorbike right into a real-life gentle cycle. So as to add to the spectacle the panels additionally double as flip alerts making it really easy for different motorists to look forward to Mitch’s subsequent transfer. After all development this capability into a motorbike takes a good bit of digital wizardry however it was once just one component of an intensive electric overhaul.

“I cut away 95% of the stock harness and paired what was left with a Motogadget M-unit. This seemed easy on paper but was pretty challenging for my abilities.  I needed to make sure everything still functioned properly which included the Motronics injections system, oxygen sensor, intake temperature sensor, coolant temp, oil pressure switch, etc. The blessing of forums and the internet helped me to troubleshoot everything. I can tell you I was pretty happy when the bike fired up and all of the warning lights on the Motogadget Motoscope Pro worked!”

Witkamp BMW K1100LT Cafe Racer

Witkamp BMW K1100LT Cafe Racer

“A big goal with the wiring on this bike was to hide the wiring harness,” Mitch provides. “From the front of the bike to the back, you only see a few wires here and there. When you do see them, they are housed in a stainless braided line. You don’t see the battery, the coils, the coolant reservoir, and the majority of the wires. I think doing this really helps clean up a bike.”

There may be, in fact, much more to this construct than simply the LED lights results. To accommodate the entire acrylic main points Mitch needed to fabricate all-new bodywork. The use of aluminium sheet he formed his personal fork covers, headlight cover, aspect panels for underneath the tank, seat pan and a tail unit with built-in lights. The checklist doesn’t finish there despite the fact that. Mitch machined his personal BMW roundels and fastened them through enhancing the tank so the wiring may well be hidden. There’s additionally a customized choke pull, injection duvet, coolant reservoir with a integrated sight glass, radiator caps, battery/electronics tray, and a billet subframe of his personal design all machined from aluminium. Oh, and we higher no longer fail to remember the customized gasoline cap, surprise reservoir and speed stacks which he’s fastened on an perspective to compare the strains of the gasoline tank.

In spite of the most obvious complexity of the paintings that’s long past into the alloy Mitch says, “I’ve never really welded aluminium before this bike. Going into this build I knew I would make a lot of mistakes and I sure did make a lot of mistakes! But I was learning and am still learning. I had to re do a lot of pieces, but I was able to get a little better as I progressed with the build.”

Witkamp BMW K1100LT Cafe Racer

Witkamp BMW K1100LT Cafe Racer

Then there are the elements that Mitch has retrofit from different motorcycles to succeed in the stance and function he was once after.

On the pointy finish of the motorbike, you’ll discover a Triumph Pace Triple wheel held in position through customized spacers. The forks are of Suzuki GSXR 1000 pedigree and are sitting in a customized triple clamp. In addition they got here provided with brake {hardware} through Brembo. Within the rear is a BMW K1200 rear wheel with extra Brembo equipment. Alloy clip-on handlebars cling off the fork stanchions and so they put on silver Motogadget m.button switches, stripped and sanded Brembo levers and knurled alloy grips. Sitting atop the changed clamp is a trick taking a look Scotts/Ohlins steerage damper and a Motogadget Motoscope virtual gauge. The gauge sits in a customized made aluminium housing and alloy BSK rear units entire the revised driving place.

When it got here to the engine Mitch invested maximum of his time into cleansing up the outside and striking in combination a customized consumption and exhaust device. Viewing the motorbike from the left aspect unearths an astoundingly advanced exhaust device which is made up of an eye-watering 204 in my view reduce and welded items of chrome steel pipe. Listening to that Mitch hadn’t had any earlier revel in welding stainless sooner than was once moderately astounding. However as he explains, the adventure to this consequence was once no stroll within the park.

See additionally

BMW R100 Scrambler

Witkamp BMW K1100LT Cafe Racer

Witkamp BMW K1100LT Cafe Racer

“I’ve always wanted to learn how to weld stainless, specifically making a pie cut exhaust. I decided to take on the challenge with this bike.” Mitch says. “I bought some stainless tube and started cutting and welding. 60 hours later, the exhaust was done, but it wasn’t pretty. I knew it didn’t look very good but I was okay with it. I posted a few pictures and had one gentleman make an interesting comment online. The comment was, ‘That BMW’s exhaust looks like 🦆💩!’ I laughed at the comment because calling someone’s welds bird poop is just slang for bad welds. I responded to his comment by telling him “LOL I’m learning” and he in reality reached out to me and introduced to assist. He gave me a ton of recommendation and confirmed me what I used to be doing mistaken. Then I used to be at a cross-road with the construct. Will have to I throw away the exhaust and get started over or stay the dangerous exhaust and simply be ok with the welds?”

“After thinking about it for a long time I decided to start over. My goal with every bike I build is to build it the way I want, build it the right way, no matter the cost. My cost was losing a lot of time and some money, but I knew it had to be done. If I didn’t redo the exhaust, all the attention would be drawn to it, especially since it is such a focal point. So I started over, changed a few of the design features, and was able to weld up a pretty decent looking system.”

Mitch’s new setup is a 4-into-2 device with an x-pipe to steadiness them out. The entire device is an absolute paintings which is made even higher through how he’s tucked the mufflers up into channels beneath the tail unit.

Witkamp BMW K1100LT Cafe Racer

Witkamp BMW K1100LT Cafe Racer

For the completed look of his BMW K1100LT Mitch went with a black and uncooked alloy theme. Virtually all of the decrease part of the motorbike is black whilst the higher phase is all brushed alloy. Mitch has a strict rule together with his motorcycles that the color palette will have to be not more than 2 colors so the one color you’ll to find listed below are a couple of blue LED accents. For a good cleaner end and to shed slightly extra weight he’s additionally swapped the entire fasteners with titanium examples. In the end, it’s the little main points that depend.

In regard to the motorbike’s efficiency, Mitch is more than happy with the result. He says that together with his builds he all the time targets to create a motorbike he can leap on a experience every time he needs and it will have to be dependable. In keeping with him his K1100LT cafe racer rides “like a dream” and is “super light and nimble”.

We’ve observed numerous changed flying bricks doping up in recent times however few were as spectacular as this one. May just this be a contender for this 12 months’s most sensible 10 cafe racers? We predict so.

MITCH WITKAMP

Witkamp BMW K1100LT Cafe Racer

Witkamp BMW K1100LT Cafe Racer

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.