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Custom Suzuki DR650 Looks the Part as a Classy Scrambler, Wears 1981 SR400’s Gas Tank

With its Suzuki roots and Yamaha fuel tank graphics, this thing is bound to leave many people confused regarding its actual origin.
Custom Suzuki DR650 16 photos
Photo: AJ Moller Photography via Ellaspede
Custom Suzuki DR650Custom Suzuki DR650Custom Suzuki DR650Custom Suzuki DR650Custom Suzuki DR650Custom Suzuki DR650Custom Suzuki DR650Custom Suzuki DR650Custom Suzuki DR650Custom Suzuki DR650Custom Suzuki DR650Custom Suzuki DR650Custom Suzuki DR650Custom Suzuki DR650Custom Suzuki DR650
Taking a road bike and infusing it with off-roading capability can work great when you’re looking for a custom scrambler suited to dirt and gravel roads. However, one must approach things a little differently if they want to get serious and stray off the beaten path, which is what Al – the owner of this stunning Suzuki DR650 – was interested in upon reaching out to Ellaspede.

He insisted on using a street-oriented motorcycle as the donor at first, but the guys eventually convinced him that starting with a dual-sport would be the way to go. After some back and forth, they settled on a brand-new 2020 MY DR650 from Suzuki’s lineup, promptly dismantling it when it got delivered to their shop in Brisbane, Australia.

Since the bike was in perfect condition mechanically, the Aussies got started on “the fun stuff” right away. First things first, they tweaked its stance by lowering the suspension on both ends and subsequently turned their attention to the footwear department.

The DR650’s stock wheel hubs were retained, but they’ve been relaced to a pair of Excel rims measuring 19 inches at the front and 18 inches out back. Ample grip both on and off the asphalt is offered by a pair of dual-purpose Shinko tires, whose dimensions are 120/70 up north and 150/70 at six o’clock. With these goodies in place, Ellaspede got started on the fabrication work.

Browsing through eBay, Al managed to outsource a 1981 Yamaha SR400’s fuel tank, which was carefully revised to fit on the DR650’s frame like a glove. The standard subframe got ditched altogether, making way for a looped substitute that’s been manufactured from scratch.

Attached to this custom subframe are several steel components built in-house, including a fresh seat pan, battery box, and rear fender. In addition, we’re also greeted by a tailor-made saddle cloaked in tan leather, along with a tiny LED taillight and an unobtrusive license plate holder. Peeking at twelve o’clock, you’ll see a high-mounted fender made of steel and a Koso Thunderbolt headlamp right above.

The creature's cockpit is home to Daytona instrumentation and a Biltwell handlebar, which features Motogadget bar-end turn signals, underslung mirrors, and brown grips matching the saddle upholstery. Motogadget was also responsible for supplying the rear-end blinkers, while the beefy skid plate found beneath the engine came from B&B Off-Road.

For a little extra grunt, the Suzuki’s 644cc thumper received a higher-spec Mikuni TM42 carb, K&N air filtration hardware, and a unique stainless-steel exhaust system. Ellaspede’s bike-modding gurus got this scrambler-style project done about two years ago, but they haven’t mentioned how much Al had to pay for it to materialize. In any case, you can bet your bottom dollar that he wasn’t disappointed with the result!
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About the author: Silvian Secara
Silvian Secara profile photo

A bit of an artist himself, Silvian sees two- and four-wheeled machines as a form of art, especially restomods and custom rides. Oh, and if you come across a cafe racer article on our website, it’s most likely his doing.
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