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Old 12-20-2010, 11:14 PM   #1
BergDonk OP
Beastly Adventurer
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Joined: Nov 2010
Location: Snowy Mountains Oz
Oddometer: 3,930
BergDonk's DR650

Hi Guys (and Gals),

I posted some of this on the DR650 thread, buts its easy for stuff to get lost there so I thought I'd follow otehr's examples and make my own thread for my DR650 because I thought some would be interested to see what I'm up to.

I got a deal on a used 09 DR650 in February. It came with a lot of kit, including:
0.46 fork springs
8.5 kg rear spring
braided front brake line
protaper bars with raiser for
MSC steering damper
wind screen
big footpegs
acerbis rear guard
headlight protector
bash plate
rear brake m/c guard
32 l safari tank
sheepskin cover
aluminium hardcase panniers and frame
megacycle muffler
extra air filter
spare rear sprocket
+ 2 sets of partly worn tyres and 11,000 kms on the speedo.

I paid $6900 AuD for the lot, unregistered. Not a gift, but a good deal I thought.

Iíve ridden DRs before and weíve had them in the company fleet Iím a casual employee of, as tour bikes. They are the ultimate do all, good at nothing in particular, but capable of anything. It was time to own one and do some adventuring.

I have ridden Husabergs in the bush for over 10 years, having a 98 FE501, now with 33,000 kms, and a 07 FE650 coming up 10,000 kms. The Bergs are reliable, but need regular +/- 5 hr oil changes as they only take 800 ml per change and with 2 ring pistons are hard on oil. The 650 with some pipe and carb work puts out 63 hp at the wheel on the dyno and weighs 122 kg blinged and fueled with 10.5 litres on the bathroom scales, so I didnít get the DR to go fast in the bush!

I got it to go far with not much more maintenance than oil changes.

Since getting the DR Iíve done a few more things to it, including strip the frame and wiring and reassemble for reliability, ie lube all bearing and wiring connectors, check for chafing etc etc.

Iíve also adding a couple of racks. I did this by removing the stock taillight and fitting an old Berg extender and light I had lying about. This made room to fit the KLX 250 rack I had lying about and left over from my wifeís bike. I then cut and welded a Ventura rack I also had lying about for the top rack. The Kelly tool bag hides under. Youíll note that its facilitated by the beefier seat which incorporates a Yam XT600 foam from the wreckers piggy backing the stock Suzi seat. Iím 6í 3Ē and have dodgy knees. While I was in there, I reinforced the subframe just in case, because I could, and it was easy to do.

Iíve also added some 12v accessory outlets to the tank bag and behind the headlight. I did this by rewiring the headlight and using the original headlight wiring for the accessories and heated grips. The headlight now uses a +80% Philips bulb and is wired directly to the battery through a switch and relay.

Iíve fitted Fastway pegs and cut down and rearset the stock footpeg hangers. I may yet fabricate new hangers without the rubber bushes. I donít want them failing at an awkward time.

The bike came with a Megacycle tailpipe and muffler as well as the stock system and crap jetting. After some debate with myself, and testing of the stock system, and looking at the Berg system and DR Staintune option, I got an FMF Powerbomb header and fitted that up. Also got a Dynojet kit and am still working on trying to get rid of the slight off idle hesitation. Iím convinced that my seat of the pants, and test hill, demonstrate a slight improvement in grunt with the header. Its now the same bore all the way through to the muffler, and the same size as the Staintune. I note that Staintune only sell a full system. Many of their other systems are either or, including my wifeís KLX250/300 which just has the Staintune header and stock muffler. I ĎTí vented the carb and removed the limit switch while I was in there, just in case.

I also modded the fuel inlet on the carb so all the Safari litres get into the carb via gravity. It seems it actually holds about 38 l.

After some further debate with myself I decided to fit an 18Ē rim. Ended up with an Excel and HD stainless spokes from JTR. Primarily it gives me more tyre choices, especially out west. The 12 mm or so of extra ground clearance is nice too, they are close to the ground! It also has the effect of removing 3 teeth to the back sprocket and slightly speeding up the steering.

I had played with gearing by trying 14/15/16 countershaft sprockets. Iím running 15/46 now which equates to 15/43 with the 17Ē wheel. This was somewhat forced on me when the bearing in the sprocket carrier collapsed while testing my jetting just after fitting the 18Ē rim. Fortunately it was near the shed and in 1st gear at the time. It locked up the back wheel and destroyed the chain. It could have been at speed up my hill a few minutes beforeÖ My 2 mates with DRs have also had them collapse, and I discovered that when we had them in the fleet they were sometimes replaced on tour. They had to be checked every day. So Iíll change them at say 10,000 kms to be safe, maybe each chain.

Iíd also read that some have lost the top chain roller. Mine was AWOL after a 1,000 km trip to Dargo via Pinnibar. The pics show a repair. The welding looks worse than it is, shadows, but I did struggle a bit getting the MIG torch in there, even with the shock and airbox out.

Another weakness that they seem to have is a fragile chain guide. I fitted a Procycle replacement and fabricated a reinforcement to support the inside up to the swingarm which is attached using nutserts.

Iíve got some more racks to make for my Wolfman panniers, coming soon. Iíve also got a set of tank panniers which work well after fine tuning the webbing.

With the suspension, I got my mate Frank Pons to fit some Gold Valve emulators to the forks and revalve the shock to suit the spring. Much better, but still I want more. The Berg benchmark is a problem. A bit inspired by Snowy, who just lives up the road a bit, and I met on a ride in Feb, and Mezo and LukasM, Iím in the process of fitting an Ohlins off a 96 KTM and a 48 mm WP USD front end off an 08 SXF. The shock is now with Frank for servicing, respringing and valving after test fitting this week when I fixed the chain roller. May also get a slightly shorter reservoir as it only clears the exhaust by 1-2 mm, and its not really enough. The extra shock length will result in 12 mm more travel and swingarm sag according to my measurements. We shall see how that effects the handling. With the 26 mm axle hole on the WP forks, I plan to fit the Suzi wheel with eccentric bushes, so can experiment with trail a bit to compensate if necessary. Means I can make a up a caliper carrier, and keep the stock brake too.

Thanks to Procycle for their great service and assistance to date. Enough words, some pics.

shed time IS quality time
BergDonk's DR650 BergDonk's XT1200Z
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