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  1. #1

    Join Date
    Jan 2020
    Posts
    14

    Default Suzuki DR650 Deadtail Bobber. A Bird in the Hand

    Hey all, long time lurker, recent member and new poster. I started this project back in August 2019, and have been updating over on dotheton.com , but I figured some of y'all may also like it over here, so ill copy and paste up to the current day. After that, ill try to keep the thread updated here as I go.

    (O.G. DTT post 8/12/19)
    So, a while back I started on an Honda xr600 based hardtail bobber. After thoroughly looking over the frame and power plant, I decided to go a bit of a different direction. The xr600 threw up a few challenges that wasn't "worth it" to me to work past towards the end goal. The xr is a dry sump motor, oil in frame which could have been remedied with an oil bag, BUT I was planning to use the stock main frame. That moved me to the next issue of the rake angle being to steep, which would be harder than usual to change, due to the oil tank being in the backbone. Then, on top of that, I had to source and fiddle with dual carbs.

    So enters the 1996 to present DR650 lump. It was chosen for (almost) all the reasons I didn't want to use the xr600 lump.

    Pros:
    - Still a big bore thumper
    - Wet sump motor
    - Single Carb
    - Large amounts of aftermarket

    Cons:
    -Electric start only with no ability to add a kicker

    I was on the search for a while when Mr.E sent me a link to a DR650 engine for sale "over the mountain" from him in North Carolina. I struck a deal with the seller and E delivered it and a few other DR650 parts to me at Mid Ohio. The story goes that the bike lost spark and so the seller parted it out. I found another guy locally that had a DR650 that lost 3rd gear and so he was parting that bike out. I purchased a boat load of parts off of him, but most importantly a complete ignition, wire harness and c.d.i unit.

    Also included was pretty much the entire engine minus the guts and cases (i.e. head, cylinder and case covers) which will come into play in a future post.

    The plan is simple, A bare bones, no frills thumper powered hard tail bobber with a short rake. And as the title states, I want to use as many bits that I have laying around as possible to finish this bike. "A Bird in the Hand is Worth Two in the Bush."

    I will be building the frame from scratch, using a titled KZ550 ltd neck tube that I've got kicking around. The plan right now is also to build a set of girder forks from scratch. I spent a few years building custom roll cages for pulling tractors and one Baja truck. I'm thinking this will be a good way to knock the rust off and hone my skills back in on tubing fabrication and welding.

    I've had a frame jig built for a while now, and I'm excited to try to use it to build a complete frame.

    And below is a picture of my inspiration bike. I love so much about it. Low and Lean with a short rake, minimal and a high tunnel wassel tank. It even has (pretty much) the same wheel combo I plan to run. If I can hit the proportions of this bike, ill be happy.

    Anyways, cheers and enjoy another stupid project from Hurcos (new) garage.

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  2. #2

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    Jan 2020
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    14

    Default

    (O.G. DTT post Aug 12, 2019)
    One of the first things that I figured out after hefting the complete spare lump around the shop, is that it will be a HEAVY endeavor to build a frame around it while lifting it in and out of the jig. In my first post, I mentioned getting a spare engine minus the cases and guts. I found a guy on facebook who sent me a bare set of cases on the cheap. One of them had met a rock in an unsavory fashion and left a hole in it, but its fine with me, since I am just building a completely hollow mock-up motor.

    I got most of the gunk knocked off the cases last night, and then I turned a faux countershaft on the southbend lathe. Its dimensionally offset the same as the stock motor so that I will be able to set up my rear wheel/axle correctly without having to put the complete motor in until final assembly.

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    It was to nice of a day not to ride into the shop, so I strapped the mockup motor to the trusty, crusty daily beater BMW and away we went.
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  3. #3

    Join Date
    Jan 2020
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    14

    Default

    (O.G. DTT post 9/3/2019)

    So enters the inspiration bike. I really loved the proportions, so I took a known dimension (the o.d. of the front rim) and scaled the rest of the bike as close as I could. Now I know the picture is at a slight angle, so its all just rough dimensions, but it'll get the proportions close. If your curious, its sitting at a 32 deg rake angle and a 60" wheel base with right at 6" of frame ground clearance.
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    I should be soon ready to start bending some tubing and making motor mounts.

  4. #4

    Join Date
    Jan 2020
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    14

    Default

    Started hacking out a frame. I drew most of the main dimensions for the "side view" up in cad, but most of the final decisions still came from masking tape and the "stand back and stare" method.

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  5. #5

    Join Date
    Jan 2020
    Posts
    14

    Default

    Original DTT post 12/17/19

    Its nice seeing this thing off the jig and on the floor. Im happy with the lines all in all. I just have a small amount of weld out to do on a few spots I couldnt reach in the jig, and a bit of smoothing with a grinder. Ya know what they say....

    "a grinder and paint makes a welder what he ain't"

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  6. #6

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    Jan 2020
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    14

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    (O.G. DTT post Dec 18, 2019)

    Got the bike mocked up. Currently using a dr350 18" rear wheel and a cb550 19" front. I was planning on running the same combo only laced to an xs650 rear drum and titan 2ls front drum, but I think discs may be the way to go....

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  7. #7

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    Jan 2020
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    14

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    (O.G. DTT post Jan 7, 2020)

    Not a huge update, but i did pick up an oil cooler that should be pretty neat for this build. I was trying to find something with a bit of a vintage look and was coming up short. That's when I found this at my local motorcycle breaker. Its off of a CM400A (Hondamatic).

    I will have to make an adapter to feed the inlet and outlet lines into the DR motor, but i think the cast alloy finned look fits the bill swimmingly.

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  8. #8
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    Join Date
    Sep 2012
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    711

    Default

    OMG. This thread is kickass.

    That mockup looks like some of the best proportioning I've seen. I love short shit

    Man I want to straddle that thing like nobody's business

  9. #9

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    Jan 2020
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    Default

    (O.G. DTT post Feb 21, 2020)

    I decided to go with disc brakes after all. A buddy of mine sent me an xs650 front hub to use. I didn't like hour the rough cast looked, so I chucked it up and turned the bulky rib out.

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  10. #10

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    Jan 2020
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    Front wheel laced, trued and rubbered. Its a 19" with a shinko speedmaster copy.

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  11. #11

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    Jan 2020
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    14

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    For the front end, I'm using rd350 triples with xs650 forks. The stem was about an inch to short to fit the kz550 neck. I cut the stem, made a plug/ extension, pressed it in and tig welded it back together.

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  12. #12

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    Jan 2020
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    (O.G. DTT Post Mar 31, 2020)

    With the front end sorted, I was able to make it an actual roller. I may internally shorten the forks a bit to get them flush with the triples, but for now it feels good just to see it together and actually rolling.

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  13. #13

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    Jan 2020
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    We are now pretty much present day (ish)

    The Rona- quarantine has lended me a bit of ability to get into the shop and get things done the last few days.


    Made up a front and rear seat mount.

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  14. #14

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    Jan 2020
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    14

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    coil mount. Since i dont have room to hide it, might as well showcase it.. lol

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  15. #15
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    great lines. this is looking good.

  16. #16

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    Jan 2020
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    Much thanks. Still plugging away, will update here soon.

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