Wayne Buys – aka FabMan Creations – is a specialist in custom bike building from South Africa, and he recently completed a very special custom project for one of his select clients. Buys’ brief stated that he was to create a motorcycle that could work as an “aircraft-inspired” ride. The result is a modified BMW R nineT motorcycle that has been named “Storm” and it might just represent part of the future of motorcycle design.
Storm: What is it?
As we already mentioned briefly, Storm is a uniquely modified BMW R nineT motorcycle that has been changed with futuristic features to look like the bike of the future. Buys started with a low-mileage BMW R nineT to ensure that his client could get the maximum enjoyment out of the machine, and also to help ensure that all the key components were in good condition.
The most striking feature of Storm is its matte-silver body work which is made from curved aluminum panels that have been intricately shaped to form around the original bike build. This was a long and careful process that dominated the total of 8 months’ project time that it took to complete Storm.
It’s all in the detail
What makes Storm even more magnificent is the level of careful detailing that has gone into it. For example, Buys used small Allen head fasteners to fix the panels to the bike, attaching them to the edges. When you look at the effect, it’s highly reminiscent of a riveted aircraft joint. The client did ask for an “aircraft-inspired” product, and Buys was only too happy to deliver.
Further details on the bike include hand-made aluminum handlebars, a single front headlight built right into the aluminum panel body, and a custom-made dashboard that features a speedometer from Acewell. When you look at the bike from the front, the front wheel is mostly hidden by a specially designed front wheel fender made of the same aluminum material that covers much of the body.
Does Storm overheat?
One final point that Buys had to overcome was the issue of overheating. Bikes get hot at the best of times, so a bike covered in metal panels and that has the original exhaust removed would surely generate massive amounts of heat within that covering, wouldn’t it? In fact, it doesn’t, and that’s thanks to a special modification that Buys made to the engine.
Because the exhaust had been removed, Buys instead created three strategically placed holes under the engine to help manage the exhaust needs. On top of that, he also created several key air intakes that were carefully positioned around the bike to help everything stay cool as the bike was cruising along.
The future of motorcycles?
Some people might describe Buys’ overall design concept as more of a “retro-futuristic” concept; a call to the buyer’s nostalgia, rather than a genuine look at the future. However, no one can deny that the sleek, unified effect that the aluminum panels create is eye-catching and breathtaking.
Storm was a one-off project, and BMW hasn’t announced any plans to purchase the design and put it into mass-production. For now, it seems, such motorcycle designs will remain in the minds of creatives like Wayne Buys.