DR350 Thread

Discussion in 'Thumpers' started by leonphelps, May 16, 2007.

  1. a68dart360

    a68dart360 n00b

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    Hello all. I am new to the Dual Sport thing. I have had a couple of street bikes before but a buddy of me decided that we should get the dual sport bikes and do some trail riding where I live which I am fine with that. I don't want to go out and get hurt riding motorcross in the desert crazy . I just want to ride and enjoy the scenery. Here is a picture of the bike I just got. It is a 1991 DR350S with 5,400 miles. Thought is was a deal at $800.00 but it needed work. When were started working on it to get it started it only needed fuel petcock cleaned and re o-ringed and it started right up. I got lucky with the purchase.
    Now I am looking for any rear cargo racks. Does anyone know of a top and side rack system available. I seen one that had a top rack that held both a small water and fuel container and had two side racks for bags. What have people put on their bikes. let me know. Thanks Eddie
    [​IMG]
  2. Canadian FJR

    Canadian FJR Been here awhile

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    Can somone confirm the valve gaps for a 1999 DR-350SE?







    Thanks,
    Canadian FJR
  3. slartidbartfast

    slartidbartfast Love those blue pipes

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    Incredibly clean looking 91 - You did well for $800. It should also fit your needs extremely well.

    Several companies make racks. A good read through this thread will find you some information as will an internet search for "DR 350 luggage" or similar.

    I have an aluminum pro-moto billet rack (that is no longer available - but You might track one down somewhere) but it does not have frames for panniers. There are several types of packs available that will fit without frames though.

    If you plan on riding for more than 30 minutes at a time you will probably want to upgrade the seat. I have been very satisfied with a Seat Concepts seat kit.
  4. Greg Bender

    Greg Bender Long timer

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    LOL!

    Yes, it is in the stock location. I suppose I could be bumping it, but it is really tucked in there and out of the way. I broke the original one a year or so ago and now I just noticed the replacement (from a 1990 parts bike I parted out) is broken, too. I am thinking the breakage is due to all the rocky stuff I ride around here. I love the rocky stuff, but it does take a toll on the machine (especially at faster speeds - though I am no racer by any stretch).

    While I am generally not a fan of re-engineering something (I think the original factory engineers did a very good job on most things), I think I may try to rubber mount the shock reservoir this time (as GaThumper mentioned). I'm thinking something similar to the way the dirt model fuel tank is bolted to the frame at the front: rubber grommets provide a cushion/steel spacer permits solid mounting. Of course, this means I'll have to enlarge the mounting holes in the bracket (creating a potential weak spot there). We'll see if there is enough meat there to begin with.

    Honestly, I am really amazed at how big of a beating the DR can take without breaking anything at all. This little bracket is really the only thing I can point to that has given me any sort of repeat breakage issue at all (not due to crashes, etc).

    Regards,

    Gregory Bender
  5. Greg Bender

    Greg Bender Long timer

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    The valve gaps are listed in the factory workshop manual:

    Intake: 0.05 - 0.10mm (0.002 - 0.004 inches)

    Exhaust: 0.17 - 0.22mm (0.007 - 0.009 inches)
  6. Greg Bender

    Greg Bender Long timer

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    Hi Eddie,

    For a rear rack, here is a review I did of one:
    http://thisoldtractor.com/gtbender/dr350.htm#gtb_luggage_rack_by_manracks

    But, since you have the S model, then you could fit one of Brian's racks were he modifies the original steel loop behind the seat. I don't see his ad on eBay just now, so he may be taking a break, I dunno??? (he only modifies the steel loop as on S models - not the aluminum loop on dirt models).

    Personally, I am a big fan of soft luggage and I think it works very well for dual sport stuff. The rougher you treat it, the better it performs (in contrast to hard luggage). For this reason, I run Dirt Bike Gear bags for all of the stuff I take with me on any given weekend ride. I cannot say enough good things about the Dirt Bike Gear bags. I have put them through the ringer and they hold up exceedingly well. The prices are very fair and I think you get a lot more for your money than with the cheaper stuff sold by other companies. The owner, Dan Schuster, stands behind his product and will warranty it for stuff you wouldn't dream of asking a warranty for (like when I crashed right on my front number plate and tore one strap out of the number plate bag).

    For longer trips, I fit my original Giant Loop bag (about the size of the Coyote one available today). I've used the Giant Loop bag on two longish 7 - 9 day trips and I really like it. It performs extremely well.

    For water, it is not possible to pack enough water when riding in remote regions of the desert. Anyone who has ridden out here in the Summer knows that you bring all you can, refill when you can, and hope you don't get stuck out there for very long if bad stuff does happen. For this reason, I use a Camelbak Mule. No, I don't particularly care for wearing a backpack full of water, but I've gotten used to it and it is the best way I know of to carry water while riding in the dirt.

    As for fuel, I fit a larger tank made by Clarke and it has been working very well. There are other tanks made by IMS and Acerbis. All are good choices.

    If all you are going to be doing is riding around at slow speeds on good quality dirt roads, then packing fuel and water on a rack will work just fine. But if the road starts to get washboarded or bumpy and/or your idea of "crazy" changes a bit, I think you'll find that strapping weight on the back of the DR is not going to work out extremely well. Sure, it can be done well (http://www.rotopax.com/), but having a dedicated tank is so much nicer.

    Hope this helps!

    Regards,

    Gregory Bender
  7. Greg Bender

    Greg Bender Long timer

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    Hi groundrules,

    The breather arrangement changed over the years with the DR350 (and between the dirt and street models). With your 1991 DR350S model, I believe the arrangement was very simple: a single hose directly from the engine crankcase to the inlet port shown in your airbox picture. There were never any small hoses connecting the airbox to the carburetor. You can see a pretty good photo of the arrangement on the air filter page of the spare parts catalog.

    I know that that breather arrangement on my 1993 DR350 (dirt model) works very well and I have no complaints with it. I'd like to think that your original factory arrangement would work very well, too, but I have no direct experience with it. I would certainly start with the stock configuration and then change only if needed. I have not heard of "breather modifications" being any sort of typical change to the DR350, so I would be hesitant to think it was anything other than someone either solving a problem that didn't exist OR covering up a symptom from some other component failure (think excessive blow-by due to a stuck ring, etc).

    Perhaps someone else with an earlier S model may chime in with some more info. Hope this helps!

    Regards,

    Gregory Bender
  8. groundrules

    groundrules Long timer

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    Oh hiya
    Mr Bender, thanks for your replies and expertise.
  9. MrPulldown

    MrPulldown Long timer

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    Not very many side rack only options. I hard the turbo city Borrego (sp?) rack. It was a big high quality unit. Am planning on getting on of the side rack versions. The sides are built in to the top rack. There are two size (the sequioa abnd the denali) for the side rack. They are both built off the same top rack. I have heard the the smaller ones takes a beating better as the sides are cantilevered for the top.
  10. kobukan

    kobukan almost gnarly

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    I've had the TCI Denali rear rack on mine for over 10k miles. They're a lot tougher than they look - I've beat the heck out of mine year-round here in Maine and it has held up just fine to everything - even the endo I did earlier this spring. Same for the Wolfman bags. I'd highly recommend them both.

    I don't really have any close-up shots, but here's a couple pics.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
  11. mustangwagz

    mustangwagz Been here awhile

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    who makes the windshield you got kobukan?
  12. MadChap

    MadChap Been here awhile

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    Here are just my opinions on the rack vs. no rack question.

    1st possibility - DIY My set up: Not recommended: I have the Manrack and some side standoffs that I built myself. I also built a board to go on the rack which slips off and becomes a small table for bush camping. I put a semi-water proof bag on the rack and two throw over bags I bought used off craigslist. I probably have $230 into the whole system. This was made possible because I have a commercial sewing machine to customize the bags and straps and a friend with a welder.

    Good: fun project, table is kind of cool
    Bad: Not that cheap in the long run, Hassle to use, cumbersome, very slow to pack up, bounces too much, way too many straps to tighten and loosen every time you want access to something. Side racks bend when bike is dropped, not water or dust proof. etc....i rode with guys with the giant loop system and they were packed and ready to go in 1/3 the time it took me.

    2nd possibility: Borrego rack and Wolfman saddlebags and tail bag. Rack $269.95, Wolfman Saddlebags $219.99, Wolfman Expedition dry duffle $114.99 for a total of $604.93. Plus rotopacks

    Good: Nice looking set up. 78 ltrs of storage maxed out. Three separate bags so may be easier to find stuff. Made by great people
    Bad: Rack and side racks are always on the bike. Very wide load which will catch brush. More bouncing that giant loop system. Pretty expensive. Lots of straps to do and undo when using so not quick to take off and take into motel room. Racks may bend in a lay down or crash.

    3rd possibility: Giant Loop system, and Sweet Cheeks. Coyote is 30+ ltrs and costs $312.97 at Atomicmoto, or Great Basin is 50+ltrs and $415.97. SweetCheeks for extra fuel or water, plus you'll solve the miserable seat problem in one fell swoop. Costs about $25

    Good: No racks required. Very lightweight system. Compress down to whatever you pack in them. Includes stuff sacks. Mounts very close the the bike with just a few straps. Very quick to unstrap, and throw over shoulder to carry into motel room. Made by great people. Very waterproof. Very tough in a crash. Easy to add an additional dry bag for more storage. Superfast to pack as access is very good.
    Bad: no rack for short around town hops. Not quite as much storage without additional dry bag.
    I'm sure there are other positives and negatives to each system.

    If I had it to do over again, I'd go with the giant loop Coyote in a heart beat. I could even easily be talked into selling my entire system so I could purchase a Coyote.

    Just thought I'd put in my thoughts. YMMV.

    BTW, here's my set up before adding Sweet Cheeks:

    [​IMG]

    This one shows the table:

    [​IMG]
  13. kobukan

    kobukan almost gnarly

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    It's a Slip Stream S06 Spitfire Windshield - pretty common and can be found for around $75, maybe less. Some people like them, some don't. It works for me and can be removed or reinstalled in under a minute, which I really like.

    - Not a good option if you don't always want the racks on your bike.
    - They aren't really that wide, in fact with bags removed they aren't wide at all, but I always carry bags.
    - There is no bouncing.
    - They are expensive.
    - There seems be a common misconception among many people regarding all the straps. They keep the load tight, but they rarely need to be adjusted once set up, and the bags are made to come off the bike very quickly - under a minute, probably more like thirty seconds, and they go back on just as quickly.
    - Racks may bend in a crash, but they are extremely durable.
    YMMV
  14. FlyingWman

    FlyingWman Been here awhile

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    Make sure you loosen the decomp cable first :jose
  15. a68dart360

    a68dart360 n00b

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    Thanks all for the info to everyone. I will really have a lot of info to check into but those items that you suggest are what I am looking for. Will have to post pics when I get it all together. Thanks again. Eddie
  16. Canadian FJR

    Canadian FJR Been here awhile

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    "The valve gaps are listed in the factory workshop manual:

    Intake: 0.05 - 0.10mm (0.002 - 0.004 inches)

    Exhaust: 0.17 - 0.22mm (0.007 - 0.009 inches) "


    Thanks Greg.


    Canadian FJR<!-- / message --><!-- sig -->
  17. Greg Bender

    Greg Bender Long timer

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    Amen, brother. Sweet Cheeks is awesome! A couple of weeks ago I rode 730+ pavement miles in one day from Jackpot, Nevada to Cave Creek, Arizona. There was plenty of heat and plenty of tired, but my butt never complained. I don't use it in the dirt, but it is fantastic burning up pavement miles getting to events.

    http://cycle-analyst.com/sweetcheeks.htm

    Regards,

    Gregory Bender
  18. DualDog

    DualDog Been here awhile

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    I just bought a 1993 DR350S.

    Got it home and oil leaking from around plug at botom of motor. Not much but enough to leave small oil area.

    After about 3 days I finally get around to taking it for a ride. Check oil before the ride with bike in upright position. No oil. I have an oil quart bottle with about 26 oz of oil in it. Put in about 6 oz. Nothing on stick. Put in about 6 more oz. nothing on stick. Pour remainder of oil in. Now oil is completely up the dip stick way above correct limits. Take drain plug out of bottom of engine and let a little drain out. This plug has a washer on it and a bunch of blue engine gasket type sealant around it. Not going down of stick. Do this three times and nothing going down on stick. Drain a little out of frame bolt and it does down about half way on stick but still way above full mark. Start engine and let run for about 30 seconds. It is now showing about the high mark in the correct limits on the stick. Let it run another minute and wait about a minute and check again. Still within correct range. Go for a couple mile ride and still within correct limits.

    Questions:
    I have read on line about how to do an oil change removing the frame plug and the engine plug. Also states to remove filter. Then is says something about removing a tube and checking a strainer. Not sure what this tube or strainer is or where it is located?

    I am 50 miles from a dealer. Does anybody know of a non Suzuki Oil Filter that can be bought at an auto store? I called a couple of my local stores and they say they can get a filter for a DR250 but their charts or parts do not even list the DR350.

    What kind of drain plug gasket/seal is used on this? Does anybody know of diameter or thickness of this washer/seal? And its material it is made out of.

    Alos, does the engine always need to be ran a little for the engine on the dipstick to go down to correct level?

    Sorry for the long post an so many questions but want to do this right and not mess anything up here.

    I will probably end up buying a Clymer Repair manual with pictures and explanations but want to get this thing correct in the meantime.
  19. slartidbartfast

    slartidbartfast Love those blue pipes

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    Strainer is behind the bottom frame hose fitting (i.e. you have to remove the hose and unscrew the fitting.) I would only do that once in a while. Certainly not every oil change.

    You can buy a 3-pack of filters for a few bucks on eBay, Amazon, or many other places on-line.

    It is a crushable copper or aluminium washer. You can buy them at just about any auto suppliers or Harbor Freight or... Just don't let them try to look it up by make and model.

    I'd be a little concerned at the bodge used to make the seal by the previous owner. That kind of maintenance and repair ethic can have many other symptoms that may not become apparent for some time. I'd check the valves fairly soon and replace the oil sealing washers for the cam cover while you're at it.

    As you discovered, yes, the engine needs to be run for a bit to get the correct level in the frame tank. The DR has two oil pumps, one to pump oil round the engine and another to return all the oil from the engine to the tank. Theoretically, the sump should be almost empty (dry sump) during normal operation. When the bike is parked for a while, oil can drain down to the sump, making the level in the tank lower and giving the uninitiated the impression that there is not enough oil - but you already discovered that!

    Good plan!
  20. Greg Bender

    Greg Bender Long timer

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    Hi DualDog,

    A DR250 oil filter should be the same as a 350 oil filter. I just buy the generic replacements from Rocky Mountain ATV MC.

    Indeed, the dry sump engine will become a wet sump engine if left set for very long. Proper checking can only be done once the engine oil has been pumped back up into the frame. The factory workshop manual provides the details on timing, but I forget all that. Instead, I always check oil after each ride when the engine is warm. I park the bike, take off my helmet, grab a rag, and check the oil (top off if necessary at that time). To me, that is the easiest and most accurate method. Good on you for checking, though. Low engine oil will toast the top end on these machines (and it doesn't have to happen).

    As for the drain plug washer, any generic one will get you by. Just bring your plug to the auto parts store and pick one out. Alternatively grab one from the OEM section of your favorite supplier (I typically use Rocky Mountain or ThumperTalk)

    Hope this helps!

    Regards,

    Gregory Bender