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Author Topic: Suzuki GS 550 E first timer cafe racer build UK  (Read 15936 times)

Offline Quintin Snell

  • Posts: 67
Re: Suzuki GS 550 E first timer cafe racer build UK
« Reply #50 on: Jan 31, 2015, 22:34:18 »
Im following your thread, i like your work so far. I agree, soft alluminiun is harder than flesh...
are you planning on tweaking the engine, suspension and btakes, or are you keeping those standard?
my first bike was a gs550e, ive been looking for a replacement for years! Not so easy to come by where i live though, so i keep searching... it took me almost a year to find a suitable donor bike for my build. Apparently the bike i finally got is slightly challenging to make a nice cafe out of.
keep uup the good work.
oh, yes, i was wondering, did you make your seat pan, or buy it? If you made it, please post pics or describe that process too, i will have to make mine, or pay double after shipping and import charges.
thanks
Currently owned, in order of acquisition
1980 gs1000g
2008 gtr1400
1981 cx500

previously owned
1980 gs550e
1978 gs750d

Offline stevogs550

  • Posts: 54
Re: Suzuki GS 550 E first timer cafe racer build UK
« Reply #51 on: Feb 01, 2015, 06:48:17 »
Thanks for your interest. Trust me, the plate bracket is flimsy! It will bend before the plate puts enough pressure on me to puncture through Kevlar jeans and skin. I wear protective clothing, not like a lot of Americans I see wearing shorts, trainers and a shirt, with no gloves. I know it's hot over there in SoCal but come on! I cede it is a valid point, and no it would not pass an Isle of Man TT inspection  ;D but it has passed several MOT inspections. I also wear an open-face when riding the GS and I think I'm more likely to cause some serious problems when my face/chin when it meets tarmac/car! :o Can we leave the plate now?!  ;D

Engine:
I've just put the pod filters on, upped the main jets by about 5 sizes and the pilot jets a size. I've put in electronic ignition timing coz I got tired of adjusting the old points (it seemed to be un-reliable sometimes). And I adjusted the shims. I bought it as a non-runner and now she starts perfectly every time and runs smooth and fast (for a 550!).

Although the clutch has started to slip slightly on full throttle at around 100mph. I guess it's when there's full power and full wind resistance. If I roll off and back on it wont slip. So I'll be looking at the clutch soon I think! Any tips on that??

Seat:
I was making my own seat but found a seat that matched what I wanted exactly so I just bought it. It turned out cheaper than buying the flower arranging foamy things and moulding my own anyway! I mounted it to the original seat hinge.

Suspension and brakes:
The front brake was shocking. I fitted braided hoses, a new second-hand master cylinder and bled the brakes in all manor of ways. There was only a slight performance increase. The new master cylinder started leaking and so I realised buying a second-hand lever was a waste of time! Now I've fitted new levers. I changed the ratio slightly so it gives a slightly stiffer feel. I've yet to ride it to find out how it feels on the road coz it's still wet outside. But it feels much better in the garage! I was thinking about drilled discs, but the problem isn't too much heat, it's just too much play in the calipers. You can see them flex on the forks when I pull the lever hard. Maybe it's bad pads. I've never changed the pads.
I've just dropped the forks an inch through the triple. And rear Koni shocks are on max. Otherwise standard suspension set up.
The rear brake feels great so I've never touched that. I always guessed it was this way coz older bikes are like that. My ZX6R front brakes are awesome and the rear is almost pointless!

Any tips on improving the front brakes on GS550??

Next up is grind off the old handlebar mounts, then maybe rear sets.

Offline stevogs550

  • Posts: 54
Re: Suzuki GS 550 E first timer cafe racer build UK
« Reply #52 on: Feb 01, 2015, 06:52:10 »
What bike are you currently working on (that you said are difficult to café)? The CX500? They're tricky because of the frame shape and radiator. Well that's my opinion anyway. I've never owned one! I think good ones look awesome, but most look bad.

Offline Quintin Snell

  • Posts: 67
Re: Suzuki GS 550 E first timer cafe racer build UK
« Reply #53 on: Feb 01, 2015, 16:23:55 »
What bike are you currently working on (that you said are difficult to café)? The CX500? They're tricky because of the frame shape and radiator. Well that's my opinion anyway. I've never owned one! I think good ones look awesome, but most look bad.

Yep, cx500. It will require some creative thinking for the frame...I'm no good at welding, so will either learn to weld, or aadapt my seat design to the frame shape... will decide when i get to it. Its my smallest bike, but really fun to ride 😀
Currently owned, in order of acquisition
1980 gs1000g
2008 gtr1400
1981 cx500

previously owned
1980 gs550e
1978 gs750d

Offline Quintin Snell

  • Posts: 67
Re: Suzuki GS 550 E first timer cafe racer build UK
« Reply #54 on: Feb 01, 2015, 16:50:59 »

Suspension and brakes:
The front brake was shocking. I fitted braided hoses, a new second-hand master cylinder and bled the brakes in all manor of ways. There was only a slight performance increase. The new master cylinder started leaking and so I realised buying a second-hand lever was a waste of time! Now I've fitted new levers. I changed the ratio slightly so it gives a slightly stiffer feel. I've yet to ride it to find out how it feels on the road coz it's still wet outside. But it feels much better in the garage! I was thinking about drilled discs, but the problem isn't too much heat, it's just too much play in the calipers. You can see them flex on the forks when I pull the lever hard. Maybe it's bad pads. I've never changed the pads.
I've just dropped the forks an inch through the triple. And rear Koni shocks are on max. Otherwise standard suspension set up.
The rear brake feels great so I've never touched that. I always guessed it was this way coz older bikes are like that. My ZX6R front brakes are awesome and the rear is almost pointless!

Any tips on improving the front brakes on GS550??

Next up is grind off the old handlebar mounts, then maybe rear sets.

Those old gs bikes were well known for rear brakes that are slightly too effective for their own good and locking up. The front werent as good though. Youve done new braided lines and bled properly, so i suggest good new pads. While youre at it, take a look at the back ones, can't hurt... check your caliper mountings for wear too. Failing that, consider replacing your calipers?
Currently owned, in order of acquisition
1980 gs1000g
2008 gtr1400
1981 cx500

previously owned
1980 gs550e
1978 gs750d

Offline Quintin Snell

  • Posts: 67
Re: Suzuki GS 550 E first timer cafe racer build UK
« Reply #55 on: Feb 02, 2015, 00:02:51 »
Aha! I just remembered rhe bike t
you were talking about earlier, "race cream" from Matteucci in italy, if I'm not mistaken. .. a nice piece of work... in fact that was the bike that made me really want to build a cafe racer instead of another restoration!
Currently owned, in order of acquisition
1980 gs1000g
2008 gtr1400
1981 cx500

previously owned
1980 gs550e
1978 gs750d

Offline GodSilla650

  • Posts: 118
Re: Suzuki GS 550 E first timer cafe racer build UK
« Reply #56 on: May 18, 2015, 13:51:56 »
Is that the stock location of the choke on your bike?  I have an 82 GS650L that had the choke lever on the handle bar, but I got a new cable and it came with the your style choke knob.  Could you let me know how it is routed?  Thanks!  Love the bike by the way, you did a really nice job on it!

Offline stevogs550

  • Posts: 54
Re: Suzuki GS 550 E first timer cafe racer build UK
« Reply #57 on: May 07, 2016, 16:09:36 »
Is that the stock location of the choke on your bike?  I have an 82 GS650L that had the choke lever on the handle bar, but I got a new cable and it came with the your style choke knob.  Could you let me know how it is routed?  Thanks!  Love the bike by the way, you did a really nice job on it!

Sorry I've not checked my post for ages! Yeah I guess that's the standard choke on mine. It was missing the choke cable all together when I bought it. It's just fed through the yoke and then under the tank area to the choke. But you've probably not been waiting for my answer!!!  :D

Offline stevogs550

  • Posts: 54
Re: Suzuki GS 550 E first timer cafe racer build UK
« Reply #58 on: May 07, 2016, 16:28:44 »
A few more changes since last posted...
Finally cut the old bar mounts off the yoke and took the paint off.
Fiddled about with the heights of the headlight and bars to create the right lines.
I've taken the rev clock off now coz the cable snapped. And then I decided I liked the single clock look anyway.

Then last week my regulator/rectifier went wrong and burnt out my Dynatek ignition sensors and coils!!!  :( Along with my headlight bulb and rear light bulb. And melted the bulb holder wires off  :o
I'm currently fixing all the wiring and finding replacement parts.

I've found a second hand Honda regulator/rectifier and fitted that.

I bought second hand OEM coils, thinking these would be better than new chinese coils (I've had a bad experience from these before). But they were faulty. Cheeky of the Ebay seller to sell these. I tested them with a multimeter and found they were faulty but I fitted them to my bike to double check. One was almost dead and the other actually blows my fuse when I plug it in. I've now bought some Velo Sport coils hoping they are better than the most common rubbish coils I've found.

I've bought an LED rear light and I'm waiting for that delivery too.

Offline stevogs550

  • Posts: 54
Re: Suzuki GS 550 E first timer cafe racer build UK
« Reply #59 on: Jul 12, 2018, 15:00:08 »
Not updated this post for a while. I've done a few things.
This year I cleaned up my discs. Stripped the paint off.
Sprayed my wheels satin black.
Then just as I'd finished that, someone was selling some gs550 wheels locally for £15 the set... and they had the drilled discs I've been wanting for ages!