The Archer: An evergreen BMW café racer from a new Polish team

BMW café racer by Morfen
It doesn’t take just a sharp eye or a deft pair of hands to build a great custom motorcycle—it takes both. The best custom motorcycle builders are either multi-talented folk, or they run teams that cover all the bases.

Jacek Mulak of Cardsharper Customs in Lublin, Poland is the whole package; brains and brawn. But he recently decided to level up, by collaborating with a multi-disciplinary designer to build custom bikes under a new banner. This dishy BMW café racer is their first build, and it’s a strong debut.

BMW R80 café racer by Morfen
Jacek’s partner in this endeavor is Michał Ćwiek, the multidisciplinary designer behind MOCNO Studio in Lublin. The two are collaborating as Morfen; Michał acts as lead designer and handles paint and finishes, while Jacek is Morfen’s mechanic and fabricator.

For their opening salvo, the duo treated Michał’s 1985 BMW R80RT to a serious glow-up. Dubbed ‘The Archer,’ the build sports a sharper silhouette, an array of one-off parts, and a timeless livery. And if you take the time to examine it closely, you’ll uncover a handful of unique details that put it a cut above your garden variety BMW café racer.

BMW R80 café racer by Morfen
Jacek tells us that he and Michał wanted to play with traditional café racer elements, but combine them in a way that would create something modern and aggressive. A big part of that was getting the stance inch-perfect—which the guys achieved by fettling a bunch of little details to create a big impact.

First, team Morfen shortened the front forks and swapped the R80’s side-mounted rear shock out for a longer unit. The R80’s quirky OEM wheels are still in play, but they’ve been redressed in contrasting finishes with subtle striping and branding. The vintage-style Shinko tires sport loud ‘Marfen’ logos to grab attention.

BMW café racer by Morfen
Next, Jacek raised the rear of the fuel tank and fabricated a new stainless steel subframe. Rather than opt for a flat line from front to back, the subframe is gently stepped. But since the subframe rails run parallel to the bottom edge of the fuel tank, the overall design is as cohesive as it is razor sharp.

Bookending the BMW’s fuel tank are a bikini fairing and a compact tail section. The former started out as an off-the-shelf piece, before Jacek trimmed it to suit the project and capped it with an orange windshield. The saddle and tail bump were fabricated from scratch.

BMW café racer by Morfen
Equal consideration was given to the BMW’s power plant. Swapping the original airbox for a pair of pod filters is a common mod on old boxers, but the area where the airbox used to be is often wasted in the process. Here, Jacek built a box to house the ignition and some of the electronic elements, then flanked it with two aluminum ‘radiators.’

The engine was judiciously finished in gloss black, with all the right bits polished to add some tasteful contrast. Custom-made badges adorn the primary engine block, while underslung stainless steel exhaust headers terminate in modified aftermarket mufflers. The entire exhaust system has been ceramic coated; a welcomed alternative to black heat wrap.

BMW café racer by Morfen
With the BMW’s physical stance sorted, Michał had the arduous task of crafting an appropriately handsome paint job. He opted for a riff on British Racing Green, complemented by pinstripes that echo classic R-series designs, with a twist. By adding an indent in the pinstripes that sit on either side of the tank, and adding black areas to the bodywork, Michał managed to trim the down bike even more (visually, at least).

The subframe was polished to match the highlights on the engine and wheels. But almost everything else was redone in black, using a smorgasbord of finish types.

BMW café racer by Morfen
Finer details include a new upper triple clamp, a Daytona Velona speedo, and clip-on handlebars. Morfen tapped Highsider for the bike’s lights, switches, and grips, then wrapped the latter in leather. Stunning custom-made tank roundels finish off the build in chic fashion.

Jacek and Michał clearly work well together—which is why this won’t be the last time we see Morfen’s name. The duo plans to build more custom bikes together, with a particular focus on BMW café racers. We’ll be keeping a close eye on them.

Cardsharper Customs | MOCNO Studio | Images by Wojciech Mietelski

BMW R80 café racer by Morfen

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