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Author Topic: Back at it....this time with an 81 Suzuki GN400.  (Read 48331 times)

Offline cierrecart

  • Posts: 151
Back at it....this time with an 81 Suzuki GN400.
« on: Nov 15, 2012, 22:14:03 »
A few years back I made the transition from a modded scooter, to a restored 67 Suzuki K15 "Hillbilly", to a slightly cafe'd RD350. 
Well, then I got into triathlon, got obsessed and just had to have an expensive bike, so I sold the bikes that had motors.   Still obsessed with triathlon, but after stumbling across the Holiday Customs  GN400 brat bike, I knew I had to get another project.
http://www.pipeburn.com/home/2012/10/22/1980-suzuki-gn400-holiday-customs.html

With that bike as my inspiration, I started watching CL, and found one fairly local...and $200 later I had this:
Coming home crammed in my minivan:


FUGLY!


The good news was that the bike has been in a storage space for a long time, and its in decent shape.  Motor turns over just fine, everything works....but it doesn't run.   The guy I bought it from (the original owner) said he had just had carb work done on it 3 months ago and it was running great (dont they all say that?) but that he'd left the petcock on when he put it away those months ago and that the jets were probably clogged.  I took a leap of faith and decided to tear it down first, then work on getting it running once I was all done.
The other positive is that it has a clear title.  (Definitely a bonus after the hoops I had to jump through with the Hillbilly!)

So, the plan is to go for a cafe/brat hybrid.  Keeping the stock tank, ditching the airbox/sidecovers,  lowering the tree on the forks to fit clipons above it, cutting the rear frame and adding the DCC rear loop and brat seat.  Plan was to get some big ol' Firestones, but the rubber on this bike is in great shape so I'll run them for now.  Ditching the tach and center console section and just running the speedo.

Already have a sizeable order in to Dime City.   Hoping to have the motor out and frame ready for paint over the weekend.
Budget is the primary concern....I'd like to stay under $1000 when all is said and done.  I have very little time to ride, so this will just be an around town errand runner on the weekends kind of bike.   I want it to look good and be fun.


Here she is stripped down24 hours later.   Forks are up in the trees to see what kind of stance I'd like.



 

Offline Chewy

  • Posts: 271
  • El Borracho
Re: Back at it....this time with an 81 Suzuki GN400.
« Reply #1 on: Nov 16, 2012, 18:45:27 »
Small world. Our mutual friend Randy showed me these pictures yesterday.

Cool Project man!

Offline cierrecart

  • Posts: 151
Re: Back at it....this time with an 81 Suzuki GN400.
« Reply #2 on: Nov 16, 2012, 20:53:24 »
haha...thats crazy.  Tell that little bastard I said hi.  :D



So my very first part came in the mail today so I did a quick mockup.  Black anodized clipons.   They look really nice and fit perfectly.   I think I'm gonna really like the different angles I can get with them.





I've also ordered a few more odds and ends like the tach plug for the motor since I'll be doing without it.
« Last Edit: Nov 16, 2012, 21:18:56 by cierrecart »

Offline cierrecart

  • Posts: 151
Re: Back at it....this time with an 81 Suzuki GN400.
« Reply #3 on: Nov 20, 2012, 17:50:09 »
Decided I wanted to try shortening the forks internally.   This is just a mockup with a 2.5" spacer in there.   I think I might do 3" instead just because this bike had such long forks to begin with.   There is plenty of room in front of the wheel and no other contact points, so it should be okay.

Offline cierrecart

  • Posts: 151
Re: Back at it....this time with an 81 Suzuki GN400.
« Reply #4 on: Nov 26, 2012, 20:39:14 »
All torn town.   Also shortened the forks by 3", cleaned them up and painted the lowers.   Currently waiting on lots of parts.


Offline reesea17

  • DTT SUPPORTER
  • *
  • Posts: 136
  • I'm probably gonna ask a lot of questions...
Re: Back at it....this time with an 81 Suzuki GN400.
« Reply #5 on: Nov 27, 2012, 23:26:32 »
If you don't mind me asking I'd like to get a few bits of information about how you shorten the forks internally. 

I just bought a CB450 and am looking to lower it by 2" overall and am wondering if it would be the same as you did here or not.  Very broad question I understand.

Offline cierrecart

  • Posts: 151
Re: Back at it....this time with an 81 Suzuki GN400.
« Reply #6 on: Nov 28, 2012, 04:45:30 »
Parts have started to arrive!


Offline cierrecart

  • Posts: 151
Re: Back at it....this time with an 81 Suzuki GN400.
« Reply #7 on: Nov 28, 2012, 18:14:40 »
If you don't mind me asking I'd like to get a few bits of information about how you shorten the forks internally. 

I just bought a CB450 and am looking to lower it by 2" overall and am wondering if it would be the same as you did here or not.  Very broad question I understand.

Sure thing.  I used this as a guide:
http://www.xs650chopper.com/2009/06/mulligan-machine-lower-your-xs650-forks-low-buck-garage-tech/

Everything was almost exactly the same on my bike, and I think most Japanese bikes from that era are very similar.  Hardest part was figuring out how to make the tool to hold the damper rod during disassembly.

I used a 2" and 1" spacer on each side.  Found them at Lowes in the bolt drawers.

Offline massey65

  • Posts: 36
Re: Back at it....this time with an 81 Suzuki GN400.
« Reply #8 on: Nov 29, 2012, 10:40:15 »
When I took my GN forks apart I just put the springs back in then pressed down from the top with an impact wrench and they came loose. I have a 1980 GN400 as well.

Offline cierrecart

  • Posts: 151
Re: Back at it....this time with an 81 Suzuki GN400.
« Reply #9 on: Nov 29, 2012, 16:26:34 »
Yeah, I'd heard that would work, but I dont have any air tools or impact drivers right now.  Using a bunch or extensions and a 17mm bolt head worked well though.