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BMW K1600GTL bike – a wooden oneA follow up on our report on a small collection of wooden bikes from Ukraine.
Honda CBR 1000RR, Suzuki GSX-R600 and a classic chopper, has now presented a wooden model of BMW’s flagship bike BMW K1600 GTL.
“Just over a month ago, I saw some videos and articles on Motonews.ru that got me interested in the BMW K1600 GTL bike. I was particularly fascinated by its signature outline, and when I learned about its characteristics and configuration I immediately knew which model would come next in my collection. I have wanted to do a modern bike that is also new to the market for a long time. I made it in the scale I usually use - 1 to 12.”
“So, I got to work searching for photos and videos to study the form and design of the BMW iron horse. First I made suspension, and then the frame – all from beech tree. Then I made the engine from alder. For the external components (the gas tank, front, left and right mudguards, etc.), I used my favorite kind of wood – ash tree. The windshield and the front light are also made from beech. Now that I mention it, the windshield is 0.5 millimeters thick. The dashboard, BMW logos and many other parts are made of 0.6 millimeter-thick mahogany veneer.”
“Interestingly enough, the model has plenty of adjustable parts: the rear footboards can be pushed back, the windshield can be raised just like on a real motorcycle, the wheels can roll, the handlebar can turn, and both the side stands can be removed. I especially pride myself on the completely functional front and rear shock absorbers that were made using the hot wood bending method – the same I used to make the six pieces of the exhaust pipe. The seats and lower parts of the panniers are made from alder, with the panniers made to be completely removable. The wheels, just as with my previous models, were carved from oak. The parts that have different colors in the real K1600 GTL also have different colors in my model, since they are made from different kinds of wood.” “The most difficult thing was making pairs of symmetrical components, like the panniers, rear view mirrors, side panels, silencers, and frame parts. They have to be symmetrically identical and accurate. And placing them on the motorbike symmetrically was even harder. To make matters worse, the fine details break really often when they are almost done, and then you have to start from scratch.”
“This time was certainly no exception, and the fine work was fraught with injuries: it is hard not to cut yourself while carving out clutch levers or gear shifters. You can even hurt yourself while working on the major parts of the bike. So, to avoid injuries, I put adhesive patches on my thumbs…”
“As I work, I count the number of parts, from the smallest to the largest, even those invisible parts used to join other components. All in all, there were 391 components, and the smallest parts were the buttons on the handlebar grips (side marker lights, dashboard controls, etc.).”
“And, well, that’s how the new wooden BMW K1600 GTL model was created in roughly 40 days.”
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