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Space-Age Aluminum Motorcycle

© by FabMan Creations

South Africa’s FabMan Creations (FMC) created a custom after-market motorcycle using curved aluminum panels that were shaped to form around a BMW RnineT motorcycle. Aptly named, Storm, the silver matte motorcycle took Wayne Buys (owner of FMC) eight months to complete for a select client who had requested an “aircraft-inspired” ride.

Buys taught himself how to shape aluminum ten years ago when he experimented by hammering out panels on a tree stump. Looking at the Storm, it seems his methods have vastly improved. To keep shutlines (the lines where the body panels meet) to a minimum the body panel pieces are large and intricately shaped. Case in point, the main metal fairing stretches from the front cowel all the way to the tail, with barely a fastener visible anywhere to interrupt the silvery metal flow.

Aluminum features covering the bike give it a futuristic space-like appeal. Not only are the body panels all perfectly curved aluminum, the Storm has hand-made aluminum handlebars, a single front headlight built right into the aluminum panel body, a custom made aluminum dashboard, and a front wheel that is mostly hidden by a specially designed fender made of the same aluminum material that covers much of the body.

Storm Details

Buys had to further modify the motorcycle to make sure it wouldn’t retain too much heat within the new aluminum covering. 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.

For engine cooling purpose the hot air is vented through multiple holes on the bottom and one in front of the rear wheel. There are also vents on top of the tank to prevent hot air from pooling inside the fairing, which adds up to double the outlet vs. inlet area. The oil cooler was moved to rear of left foot peg, enclosed in an inlet scoop. A 5 inch fan was added and ducted to vent out the bottom in order to aid in cooling.

All electrical components are enshrouded and fed cold air from around headlight, via a ducted fan, keeping a positive pressure and preventing hot air from entering. All parts are one of hand made from aluminum and stainless steel, including foot controls, reveres levers and indicator lenses made from screw driver handle. Suspension and motor is all standard R9T.

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