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Old 03-23-2013, 04:35 AM   #1
brian72 OP
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Thumb Savage LS650 Flat Tracker

I bought a project bike in December 2012.
Winter time in Massachusetts.

Great find 2001 Suzuki Savage 3500 miles for $1,100.
A little rough around the edges. Looks to have sat outside a bit.

Having owned at least 13 motorcycles before this one (all makes and models foreign and domestic) I find I enjoy large single cylinder motors ie Kawasaki's 650 and Suzuki's 400.

I'm not much into chrome and cruisers but if you can look beyond the Savages' initial presentation, there is a platform. 650 single, low and easy to work on/modify, and inexpensive.

I've decided to go with a Flat Track inspired theme. Now I'm no Flat Track racer and have never owned one before, so I do mean inspired not replica.
(I am aware of RYCA kits. They're nice, just like doing my own thing)

This bike will be used for riding on paved and dirt roads in the Berkshires of Massachusetts, Vermont, Connecticut and New Hampshire. Also a trip from MA to MI this summer.

Here is what I have so far.

Step 1 (stock bike)


Step 2


Step 3


This is it so far. Still much more to do. I will post more pics progress as it's made.
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Old 03-23-2013, 08:20 AM   #2
Bambi
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Hello Brian,
in it's actual form there will be a lot of drawbacks when using it in the manner you've mentioned. But the base offered by this Suzuki is much better than one could ever imagine. Have a look at Krasniewski's build of a Ryca Scrambler in 'Some assembly required'. There's also a link to Ryca's own web-site (if you didn't know about these guys up to the moment). I think, you don't have to buy everything off them but it gives you good ideas and you're able to get there what you're not able to fabricate on your own.
I'll watch your progress with interest!
Kind regards, Bambi
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Old 03-24-2013, 11:03 AM   #3
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I tried to raise and extend the pipe. Did not work. Too little back pressure. The flexible exhaust pipe is leaky. Took a picture before putting it back to stock.


So with the pipe back. Added universal ATV shock covers and used the brackets for the pipe to add a can for tools since the holes were drilled in the fender for it. Even with a simple bike I like to carry some tools for whatever may happen.





The cheap and easy road isn't so easy, but it is coming along.
Still, fun as hell to ride.
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Old 03-24-2013, 12:16 PM   #4
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Test ride went alright. Street tires do not like mud (duh right?)


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Old 05-01-2013, 05:21 AM   #5
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http://youtu.be/O1VEWz2n1sI

A video review and short ride.
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Old 05-03-2013, 06:40 AM   #6
Foot dragger
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Those little wheels gotta go,I dont know what fits but things wont go well in the dirt with the cruiser sized wheels. Longer shocks would be a big help to keep the bottom of the bike from hitting the ground over bumps.
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Old 05-03-2013, 08:36 AM   #7
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Looks like a great platform, but I have not seen one that would work for me.
I guess the engine is the only good thing on the bike, which is a poor place to start from.

I would want one that was built like an old dual sport, or at least like the old Triumph Daytona's which did REAL well on dirt roads and smooth trails.

Some suspension, like 5 or 6 inches in the front at least, at least a 19 inch front wheel, 18 back, flat thick longer seat.

Most modern bikes like the savage bend up the frame rails to get the seat low, which screws things up, forward controls, smaller wheels, belt drive...

A lot can be done with the bike if you keep it on the street, but to make it into an old standard you might as well put the motor in some old frame...
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Old 05-03-2013, 11:25 AM   #8
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Worst thing you can do for riding position is lower the seat.
Ignorance reigns in this respect
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Old 05-04-2013, 03:11 PM   #9
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I will be changing the tires in a bit. I just can't bring myself to put new ones on (right now) since the PO just replaced the old ones end of last season. I am doing this bike on the cheap.

As far as suspension I am almost considering replacing the stock springs with auto shocks, if I can find a pair that will fit. Imagine a set of Rancho's on this thing. Crazy. Just riding on trails I haven't yet bottomed out with the stock adjusted the way they are. Suprise to me.

So far riding trails has been fun and the bike is working out. When I decide to get a little harder on the bike, that might change.




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Old 05-06-2013, 04:17 AM   #10
Murphy Slaw
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That engine has been around a long time, no?
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Old 05-07-2013, 02:32 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Murphy Slaw View Post
That engine has been around a long time, no?

Yes it has. 20+ years.
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Old 05-16-2013, 03:58 PM   #12
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Just put some L.A. Choppers BMX style handlebars on in place of the stock buck horns. It feels a lot better to ride, position wise, for my taste. Even though it does look more cruiser-esque with the home made 1X5 inch risers (save the crossbar pad).







Also...................I find it strange that there are not more people doing this to small inexpensive cruisers. Everything is very low cost to modify, replace and repair. Is there some place or thread on ADV where others are doing this?

Did I mention http://facebook.com/ADVridingTV ?
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Old 05-16-2013, 04:09 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brian72 View Post
Just put some L.A. Choppers BMX style handlebars on in place of the stock buck horns. It feels a lot better to ride, position wise, for my taste. Even though it does look more cruiser-esque with the home made 1X5 inch risers (save the crossbar pad).


Also...................I find it strange that there are not more people doing this to small inexpensive cruisers. Everything is very low cost to modify, replace and repair. Is there some place or thread on ADV where others are doing this?

Did I mention http://facebook.com/ADVridingTV ?
I have not seen anything like what you are doing anywhere and I will be surprised if I ever do.
Have Fun!
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Old 05-16-2013, 05:43 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Xcuvator View Post
I have not seen anything like what you are doing anywhere and I will be surprised if I ever do.
Have Fun!
I appreciate the words (kind I assume) about my build.
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Old 05-16-2013, 06:02 PM   #15
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looks great. low budget fun!
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