My Winter Project - DR800

Discussion in 'Thumpers' started by Vesa, Mar 27, 2005.

  1. Vesa

    Vesa HappyHappy JoyJoy

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2003
    Oddometer:
    202
    Location:
    Helsinki, Finland
    So, after a whole summer with only a sportbike (Trumpet Sprint RS) it was clear that I had to get an adventure bike for the coming season. Before the trumpet I had a 640 Adventure that I really liked but couldn't live with the ascetism. Just a tad too sporty for street use. What then? A 950 would certainly be great, but a new one is about 17000 euros. XR650R? Yes, if they would be imported and had a button. XR650L, TT600RE, why not, but then again perhaps too dirtbike like. What I wanted was a rather simple bike that could do a lot of highway miles, be truly reliable, preferably cheap and still able to handle dirt and dirt roads (meaning weigh under 200kg's for sure...)

    What was left? Africa Twin - overpriced, heavy, sluggish(?), Super Tenere - not many available, heavy as hell, DR800 - slow, heavy, ugly, cheap, simple, reliable (a friend has over 70k kms with two BIG's without any problems), supersmooth for a single (really, I mean F650 smooth!), air cooled, another friend had one that dynoed 61rwhp... hmmm... why not?

    So, I ended up with a DR800, a '97 registered '98 and only 21k km's, one owner and full service book. Great! Just have to get rid of those hidious plastics so I don't have to care about dropping it...

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    #1
  2. Vesa

    Vesa HappyHappy JoyJoy

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2003
    Oddometer:
    202
    Location:
    Helsinki, Finland
    There's a lot of unnecessary crap especially at the rear of the bike.
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    The original bash plate looks great and has a nice shape - too bad it's made of plastic. A friend said he wanted to relocate his battery in front of the engine like 950 have (don't ask me why anyone would want to do that... :D ) and sold me his great DIY TIG welded alu bash plate cheap (50euros, thanks to Hannu).
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    The original rear panels are wide and the CDI unit is located really wide outside. It has to move.:1drink
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    A bike has to have a nice pipe. :evil
    The new one is, once again, second hand from another friend (for free, thanks Visa!) 2", should breathe :D
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    A new can is a must. Why?
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    Twelve point four kilograms :rofl :rofl
    Found a 2" inner diameter one ment for a 450EXC on german ebay. New and a whopping 121 euros. I wonder how it will sound with the 800 :D
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    Weight 1.9 kilograms.

    I'll continue soon.
    #2
  3. Vesa

    Vesa HappyHappy JoyJoy

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2003
    Oddometer:
    202
    Location:
    Helsinki, Finland
    The frame is one-piece and heavy, so in future it should hold panniers well
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    Valve adjustments are really easy, lots of room.
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    The original battery holder is light but the electrics are routed a bit fishy.
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    So what to do? Well, who could live without an aluminum battery holder :D? This diy version allowed me to relocate the rear brake juice thingy a lot inner too.
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    #3
  4. Vesa

    Vesa HappyHappy JoyJoy

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2003
    Oddometer:
    202
    Location:
    Helsinki, Finland
    Things I cannot understand. The bike has a full service book, but still no one has bothered to grease the linkage. FYI, once again expensive to replace because all are non-standard sizes. :cry'[​IMG]

    Original bars have a crappy bend for my ergos and probably wouldn't hold trashing very well, so I replaced them with medium height Afam bars that have a nice bend (this pimpish colour was on sale for 39.90:D).
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    Also, now is a great time to protect my hands with Polisport Sharp protectors, 24.90euros. I serviced forks and put on neoprene protectors (about 20e if memory serves).
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    She's starting to look so purty. :flug
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    #4
  5. Vesa

    Vesa HappyHappy JoyJoy

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2003
    Oddometer:
    202
    Location:
    Helsinki, Finland
    Light is always a good thing. The BIG has a rather small alternator that puts out somewhere between 150 and 200 Watts, so instead of just putting more wattage I had to think what kind of light to put. Big light means big visibility right? :D But wots this?
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    Well, a diy 7" front light holder made of acid steel of course. :evil :rofl I paid 50e to a friend for this, not bad in my opinion. A 7" driving light housing from Hella was a whoppin 19.90 euros and the plastic casing for it was 8e.
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    Now the road appears as though lit by daylight. It has to, says so right there on the box.:D

    Then what? After chopping a lot of stuff from the rear of the bike, I had to get an inner fender of some sort. So I had to make one.
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    A little bending
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    And cutting
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    Not finished in this state yet ofcourse.
    #5
  6. Win38-55

    Win38-55 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2003
    Oddometer:
    653
    Location:
    Patten, Maine, USA
    Nice project. Should be a sweet ride when back together.
    #6
  7. Vesa

    Vesa HappyHappy JoyJoy

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2003
    Oddometer:
    202
    Location:
    Helsinki, Finland
    The new can needed a connector pipe.
    Cutting it
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    And after some more cutting and welding, there she is
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    The position is absolutely perfect and the can is really narrow.
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    Then it was time to call mom:
    "Hey, you mind if I drop by and borrow your oven for an hour?"

    Now some Flameproofing. A man at a paint shop where my brother bought paint for his crashed TDM said this VHT stuff should hold up well. Any of you used this?
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    Time to cook
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    Btw, she didn't mind at all. :rabia
    #7
  8. Vesa

    Vesa HappyHappy JoyJoy

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2003
    Oddometer:
    202
    Location:
    Helsinki, Finland
    Now it's time to put the front end together. A humpy KTM front fender was under 18e and the additional you see above the big one is Hella FF50. I bought a used pair, once again, from a friend for about half price. Then I routed new cables through a relay for the lights, I believe it made a noticeable difference, then again perhaps not. I wanted the FF50 to be a quick connect so I decided to use a cigarette lighter plug for it. Rated at 10 amps so should hold up, wonder how it'll cope with water (the plug says 'Marine' but then again...').
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    The fender was an easy install after I made a plate from 2mm alu for it.
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    A pic without a flash to give a better idea.
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    What next? A plate holder, again 2mm aluminum (wonder if I use too much aluminum as the guy at the local shop greets me every time I walk in and asks 'how much today' :D)

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    The inner fender stops right before the electrics so I bent an extension out of 1mm plate.
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    Also, I added smaller blinkers (under 6e a pop) and cut rest of the plate holder.
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    The CDI unit found a new place under the saddle.
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    Some more to come later.

    Thanks,
    Vesa
    #8
  9. Vesa

    Vesa HappyHappy JoyJoy

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2003
    Oddometer:
    202
    Location:
    Helsinki, Finland
    Thanks! I've ridden DR BIG's just a few times before and they are quite heavy and adecuately suspended at best, but then again they have a really smooth engine with a progressive thrust. They are just what the look like.

    EDIT: Btw, is this thread becoming heavy to load? I can chop the pics if needed.
    Vesa
    #9
  10. Vesa

    Vesa HappyHappy JoyJoy

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2003
    Oddometer:
    202
    Location:
    Helsinki, Finland
    This image reminds me of an incident that... Well, I needed a silicone cable that I could use for grounding the aux light and I happened to find a piece of old 230V cable that still had the plug left. I measured the cable, dropped it on the floor and did some other things for a few minutes. Picked the cable up and cut the plug off the end first. No, it didn't happen to be the right cable. :bluduh
    Now I have a cordless heater. :vardy
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    I liked the folding mirrors that KTM uses on SXC/SMC, they're just expensive at about 30e a piece. Found equivalent ones for 13.50e, look really close to the KTM ones.
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    I wanted a cigarette lighter plug to use with Garmin eTrex. I routed it so that it can be used with the bike not powered, f.ex. if I have to load camera batteries or use the GPS etc. when not riding.
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    The cockpit is rather minimal now consisting of a GPS (have to get a RAM mount ASAP), warning lights, two 12V outs and a bicycle computer (CatEye).
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    More Light!
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    The rear end at its current shape (has just a small alu plate on top). Disregard the stickers. :D
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    #10
  11. Vesa

    Vesa HappyHappy JoyJoy

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2003
    Oddometer:
    202
    Location:
    Helsinki, Finland
    It's better than bad, it's good!
    Log - from Blammo!
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    So how does it look now?
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    A bit like this. The pic doesn't show the FF50, bash plate, mirrors or the rear alu top plate.

    Next in line:
    -Rear side panels made of 1mm aluminum. Just something to cover the frame, nothing too fancy.
    -Luggage rack to hold alu pannies or soft bags. Haven't decided which way I should go.
    -New tires as the dirt roads melt
    -A quick connect for a top box holder
    -Heated grips when I find time to get a 4-pole switch

    I have yet to ride the bike more than 30 meters. If I had to guess the weight has dropped somewhere 20 and 30kg's. The original is about 195-205kg so in current state somewhere around 180kg sounds realistic. A light year from light but nowhere GS-like heavy.

    I calculated a total of 590 euros spent on the bike, including all materials. I'm a rather happy camper. :beer
    #11
  12. ChrisC

    ChrisC Amal sex?

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2003
    Oddometer:
    6,317
    Location:
    Prescott, Arizona USA Earth
    I really like your snow tires!

    Looking nice....
    #12
  13. tac650

    tac650 Nomad

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2004
    Oddometer:
    524
    Location:
    Salem, OR
    Pooh????????
    #13
  14. Vesa

    Vesa HappyHappy JoyJoy

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2003
    Oddometer:
    202
    Location:
    Helsinki, Finland
    [​IMG]
    :deal
    #14
  15. DMZ

    DMZ Castor Bean Addict

    Joined:
    May 18, 2004
    Oddometer:
    10,151
    Location:
    NE Oregon
    DR 800, now that's a THUMPER.


    V nice job Vesa! :thumb
    #15
  16. memphisslim

    memphisslim Long timer

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2005
    Oddometer:
    3,199
    I like it!
    #16
  17. gaspipe

    gaspipe Wandering Soul Super Moderator

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2004
    Oddometer:
    11,354
    Location:
    Pickwick Lake, Tennessippi
    Cool :thumb

    Love those BIG thumpers.
    #17
  18. Oscar

    Oscar Curmudgeon

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2002
    Oddometer:
    17,529
    Location:
    Karakariki, New Zealand
    I saw this'n at Pukemanu (Wellington) last year.
    Very pretty...

    [​IMG]
    #18
  19. andruboz

    andruboz Serial overfiller

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2004
    Oddometer:
    5,520
    Location:
    central tx
    very nice project.
    i thought it looked like a sweet bike in its stock configuration. but 60lbs lighter is quite a savings.

    you could probably ebay the stock parts you don't use and reduce your project cost even more.
    #19
  20. tac650

    tac650 Nomad

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2004
    Oddometer:
    524
    Location:
    Salem, OR
    Nice job, beautiful project and report. Keep us posted on further work. That is a great looking bike.
    #20