Mark Marker's 1981 Suzuki GS550T Project Bike
I was inspired by reading an All Metric Roadbike article. The article was about this guy who builds an impressive bobber for $500. His donor bike cost $100 and his dad wrenched the engine. So I figured his bike would have cost more if he took it to a mechanic to get it to run. So I decided to buy a running bike and to give me a budget of $1500 to see what I could build.
I have always been a fan of inline four motorcycles. They have a magical exhaust tone. My original idea was to find a Kawasaki KZ1000 but I could not find one under $1000 that didn't have a lot of miles on it. So I decided to get my feet wet chopping a 1981 Suzuki GS550T into a Street Tracker. (For those of you who don't know what a Street Tracker is, it is a flat track style bike that is street legal.) I did not know anything about this make of motorcycle other than it has the lines I was looking for and it only had 24,000 miles on it.
MARCH 10, 2007
The original bike - Purchased on 12/28/06
Added a 4 into 1 Mac exhaust. $299 eBay. SOUNDS GREAT!
Stripped off rear fender, front fender, rack, turn signals. I found the the wiring was crap. It was a miracle the the bike didn't short out. 1/28/07
Here I am trying to figure out how to mount the Street Tracker rear fender and seat I bought from Hotwing Glass. $180. 1/28/07
Cut off seat tabs.
Cut off rear fender bracket and moved it forward. The bracket had holes that held on metal fender. The existing holes fit into the tabs that held on the plastic internal splash guard.
Used existing tank bolts.
I used a wooden block to support the seat. I don't know how to weld.
Put on seat for viewing only.
Rear end view.
Drilled holes for brake lightand turn signals.
Cut the remaining fender tubes to length.
Seat pan works like a hinge for easy repairs. Drilled the frame and added bolts and fender washers to make a stop for the hinge.
Bicycle bar end plugs fit into the end tubes.
Close up of hinge. Used original turn signal ground wire
Used Velcro to keep the seat on. Works great. Wired it up, only to find that my new little turn signals would need a different flasher relay. Arghhhhhh!!!!!!