Following issues with other electronic ignition systems, a group of Australian, professionally skilled, like-minded people banded together with the aim of designing and developing the best, simplest, most modern and reliable ignition system for the BMW Airhead motorcycle. Specifically, the type 246 and 247 boxer engine fitted to the /5 series right to the end of production in 1996.
Each member of the design team brought skills that were vital but worlds apart to the table. Langdon Green, the computer professional, skilled in hardware design as well as code writing for programs. Neal Lowe, Airhead rider a highly skilled and respected engineer with many years’ experience at the top end of motor racing engineering in Australia. Neal used his BMW Airheads as test / development beds for various ignition curves suitable for both single and twin plugged bikes. Les Fitz Patrick, and electrical engineer who designed and built computer operated systems mainly for the mining industry but who is an owner of many BMW motorcycles including a suite of Airhead models. Les provided and set up invaluable test equipment for monitoring things like coil and processor temps (Fitted to Mark Morrissey’s well known GSPD “Kenny”) while being ridden in everyday situations. He also accompanied Mark on the first 3,000 klm 4-day ride (a lot of it in the rain) to test a series of five different modules programmed with variations of the dedicated ignition curve.
Les’ bike is twin plugged so are Neals, Marks is not… this first long test gave us the “bones” data on which to develop “The Wedgetail”. John Green, Langdon’s dad and an owner of many Airheads also, used his 90/6 and his R80 monoshock models to (endlessly) test various styles and types of trigger system around the hills near his home. This arduous work resulted in the ground up twin trigger ignition can we produce today.
Mark Morrissey, proprietor of MMM’s BMW BOXERWORKS in Australia, owns 5 airheads from 60/5 to +450,000 klm R100GSPD Paralever (Kenny) and whose experience in daily riding and repairing and restoring these machines (along with the guidance of the people mentioned above) worked through revision after revision of every aspect of the design and construction of the WEDGETAIL IGNITION SYSTEM…over 45,000 km to eventually bring to market our Australian made integrated ignition system. One that we believe is the best available anywhere.
There are also more than 20 Australian Airhead riders who volunteered their bikes as test beds for us…Chosen for their riding habits (long haul outback riders to daily commuters) including by the way, Paul Tierney (has 4 Airheads) and works with Mark at the Boxerworks. He test rides virtually every bike they work on, rides 100 km round trip to work each day and with Mark has ridden on countless outback camping holidays over nearly 20 years.
It is this level of experience with the Airhead machine, the dedication to a world class product made in Australia and a combined passion for excellence rather than profit that has driven this process from beginning to superb riding experience for all airhead owners.