DNA

One of the most powerful custom bikes we’ve ever seen, this 186bhp creation is aptly named. Say hello to the Brain Eraser.

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If you ever doubt that passion and hard work can carry you a long way in the motorcycle industry, you need a chat with Dino Nikolaidis. Working on motorcycles since an early age, he progressed to tuning, building one-off bikes and manufacturing parts, and eventually started DNA Filters, which are now sold around the world. His products are used by dozens of custom builders and race teams and some have been adopted as standard by KTM.

Now Dino and his son Mario have created a new naked bike they call ‘The Brain Eraser’ to promote their filters.

The story began in 1985 when young engineer Dino (then 26) started a performance parts shop called TecnoMoto Racing dedicated to performance bikes. The young technician designed and manufactured his first bike in 1989 – he drew full-scale drawings, then made or customised the frame, forks, brakes, everything He kept the new build for himself until several years later when he sold it to a friend.

As an official distributor for high-end parts like Akrapovic and Dynojet, TecnoMoto Racing kept growing and developing to the point where the company designed performance filters for other brands. The turning point came in 2003 when, together with his wife Maria, Dino created his own filter company called DNA. He rented a warehouse and began designing and manufacturing several different models and special parts.

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While Dino and Maria built DNA, their son Mario was by studying engineering at Brunel University in London. After a year doing Greek military service, Mario joined the family business in 2013, and became Dino’s right hand man.

In 2017 the pair scooped first prize at the Reddot Awards for a design never seen before: a filter with a hexagonal top covered by repro leather (available in six colours to match the bike). Customisers like Wrench Monkeys, Iron Customs and XTR are already using them. Naturally, the bike you see here uses one of these filters. Mario and Dino built it to get for DNA and their vision was clear.

“The bike had to be very powerful, very light and very very fast, with exceptional handling… and it had to be different from anything you’d seen before,” says Dino. No small task, but father and son turned around the project in nine months, just in time to launch it at the EICMA show in Milan in November 2017.

The project is a 1970-80s cafe racer concept, made of unpainted metal. With a sexy frame, a unique tank and sleek wheels, it’s based on a 1195cc V-twin KTM RC8R.

The tank is made of a single block of billet aluminium – it’s fanatically machined in the DNA factory and acts as the surround for their intake system. Other parts come from Brembo (brakes), Keihin (injectors) and Akrapovic (exhaust). The obsession with creating the best possible machine went as far as buying and testing five different oil coolers before finding the right one. But the hard work paid back in the end. The bike including oil and water weighs a mere 162kg and produces 186bhp at the real wheel. The beast is called DCR 017, and they nicknamed it ‘The Brain Eraser’, for good reason.

 
‘The tank is made of a block of aluminium, fanatically machined in the DNA factory’

‘The tank is made of a block of aluminium, fanatically machined in the DNA factory’

‘In 2017 DNA scooped first prize at the Reddot Awards for a completely new design’