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Roc road

Highway life with a street legal 2012 rmz 450. A clear answer to one of the most ask questions. How does a dirt bike handle on the street.

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2018 purchased with 40-53 hours on the stock motor, pistons, vavles, shims, transmission, everything; besides an aftermarket yoshimura slip on exhaust.

Checked the vavle clearance before I road it and they were all in spec with suzuki's service manual. Let's move on.

The bike was primary used for I dont know what. The last owner said he did some riding in the Oregon sand dunes. No idea if it was raced before that.

My goal was to turn it into a road legal dual sport. I opted for a 2012 RMZ because they come with a dignostic port behind the front number plate mounted on the ECU that when kicked over provides a constant voltage of 13.50V to 14.50V ish. To power all the road legal stuff.

Upon completion I replaced the hour meter with a Trail Tech Endurance 2 at 0 miles and 0 hours. Other then a stainless steel oil filter, changed spark plug, and cleaned air filter the engine remained stock.

I commuted with the bike to work daily which is 3 miles there and 3 back on 40 mph roads. During lunch i ride for one hour about 15-20 miles on some wood trails. Blah blah blah.

Fast forward some more and the bike has 90 accumalated hours total. I have not check the vavle clearance since getting the bike.

Most of the riding was around 45-55 mph average for top speed to 35 everywhere else.

My oil changes have been every 10 hours give or take how hard and how many miles I've driven. Changed with full synthetic maxima pro plus 10w40 oil.

Air filter was cleaned once in between, from the time I got the bike till 90 hours........ lay it on me but wait till you finish this read.

Okay so up to this time I'll reiterate that the engine is still stock. No top end rebuilts, no vavle shims, NOTHING! All OEM.

At 90 hours I changed the gearing from the stock 13/49 to 15/49 since then I've added 15 hours on it with the same riding habits as before with my longest highway/freeway trip being 30 minutes at 18 miles mostly highway miles driven at or around 65Mph. Yeah she was screaming at that too, with a 5 speed gear box. It was sketchy even with that changed gearing.

Blah blah again.

Now I'm at 110 hours and 1500 miles on a still stock motor besides transmission gearing. My vavle spacing hasn't changed. And I decided to tear down the top end to see what I'm working with. Cylinder, piston, rings, conrod, vavles, spark plug, head, etc look okay with normal wear and tear.

So in conclusion. I will order a forged piston to deal better with the higher rpms that I run at. BUT THAT AS FAR AS ENGINE MODS WILL BE IT. I haven't notice any power losses and love that gearing. It still works well down low.

Now take it or leave it but this is an honest tracker from my level of riding and mechanicle knowledge. I'm not getting paid for this or influenced by a company or brand. I'm just posting this because there is, in my opinion no real knowledge posted about this topic but a lot of people are curious.

Thanks.20180601_180609.jpg.eb799bb2e1038c6bcadb744a2e3a5783.jpg

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Good on you man!

this forums chocked full of Suzuki hate, but I’ve found them to be great bikes as well. Would buy another one for sure.

 

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Intesting choice in bike for what you are using it for. Seems to be working for you though.

 

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@RawbW yeah man I got no complaints it's my first dirt bike but I'm happy with the reliability. Everybody always bashes suzuki but no ones stress testing them

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@Sheerider11 my next route will be a forged wiesco piston and honing the cylinder with a flex hone. I think once I get that it will be straight for awhile. Thanks 

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Awesome write up. Long time Suzuki owner of various dual sport sizes, never a problem. Just curious, what octane gas have you been running ?

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[mention=496663]Sheerider11[/mention] my next route will be a forged wiesco piston and honing the cylinder with a flex hone. I think once I get that it will be straight for awhile. Thanks 
You really can't hone nikasil unless you have a diamond hone.
And in the pic the plating is looking a little thin.
If you know how, take the 6 measurements and see where your at. But I think it'll be a little out of shape and the plating needs addressed
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@Sheerider11 yeah I've heard that about nikasil. This is my first top end rebuilt but now you have me curious in those 6 measurements. Much appreciated for the advice 

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2 hours ago, cman60 said:

Awesome write up. Long time Suzuki owner of various dual sport sizes, never a problem. Just curious, what octane gas have you been running ?

@cman60 thanks. I run 92 in it every time since I've had it. Not sure what was ran in it before. 

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Great factual write up, nice to hear some unbiased information.

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14 minutes ago, simimi said:

Great factual write up, nice to hear some unbiased information.

Thanks just want others to know what's up. These race bikes can handle some street only thing that couldnt is the tires.

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Hey Roc, nice write up and pics. 

I bought a street legal 2004 Husaberg 450:

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Loved the bike, but had huge problems with it. It didn't run a month on the road without blowing headgaskets. After 2 dealer rebuilds taking most of its first summer, it ran reliably. The second summer, I had a wonderful time with it. Put many, many miles on it, doing an oil change every Friday. Many of my rides were over 10 hours so it did run over the 10 hours on oil changes occasionally. I was using it for commuting as well as recreation. It was a wonderful ride. 

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About 3 months into that second summer while doing 50mph on a straight highway the crank big end seized and broke the rod, destroying the cylinder and cases. About $3000 in parts alone. Nearly new bike, but I could not see pouring good money after bad. I bought a similar year KTM 300 that I still own and still ride and has never been apart. I street ride my 2000 KTM 125 as a dual sport. The 125 is a lot of fun, but it ain't no Husaberg 450, which was a wheelie king at any speed. 

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I guess my point is, watch over your bike carefully. It is an exotic performance machine, not a general consumer product. I think the trade off is worth it to be able to ride something this awesome on the street, but it takes care. 

I did get to do a lot of riding with a friend with a DRZ400. We swapped bikes often. His was heavier and sluggish in comparison, but more stable and braked better. The DRZ felt like a Cadillac on a long trip.

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My KTM 125 has suffered many, many highway miles. I have to be careful of wind gusts and big trucks. High speeds (70-80mph) will to vibration damage to the pipe but I've never had any hub damage. Spokes loosen up and need careful watching.  While I lived in the country it made an excellent commuter bike, with the average trip being 10-20 miles. I've rebuilt the motor a couple times mainly due to dumping it while water crossing (complete immersion). After moving to the city it quickly became obvious it was not going to fit into city life, long highway trips and 2 up riding. I bought a 390 Duke to take over those duties. 

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I still keep the 125 EXC registered to connect trails, but have scaled back on its highway miles, mainly because the Duke is so easy and fun on the pavement. 

To do it again, I would have kept a second bike to keep the highway miles off the Husaberg. It was an awesome bike, but just not up to the miles of daily use. 

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1 hour ago, Roc road said:

Thanks just want others to know what's up. These race bikes can handle some street only thing that couldnt is the tires.

Yup, the Husaberg would rip the blocks off of knobbies if run on pavement. Right down to the canvas!  Dual sport type tires had no traction at all off-road with the 450 power. 

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You mis-worded the title. I tuned in to see how a dirt bike handles on the street, but you only talked about how the engine holds up. I was expecting a review of turning, braking, and ride quality. Handling. You didn't mean "how does it handle on the street", you meant "how does it handle the street". 

I either want my money back, or a complimentary ticket to your next thread. 😉

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My `02 YZ426 made a terrible dual sport bike. Short transmission and tough on tires.  I had to put a WR stator and flywheel on for lighting along with Trick Dual Sport kit.  If I had to do it again I wouldn't.  That's what big XR`s are for.

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8 hours ago, Roc road said:

Thanks just want others to know what's up. These race bikes can handle some street only thing that couldnt is the tires.

Suggest Kenda K270 for a dual sport tire - still useful on the trail while also being long life (compared to MX knobbies) on the road.

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8 hours ago, treehopper said:

You mis-worded the title. I tuned in to see how a dirt bike handles on the street, but you only talked about how the engine holds up. I was expecting a review of turning, braking, and ride quality. Handling. You didn't mean "how does it handle on the street", you meant "how does it handle the street". 

I either want my money back, or a complimentary ticket to your next thread. 😉

Let me get your account and routing number I'll process that return

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@shrubitup those dont look to bad I'll look into them and they are cheaper then my k760 trackmasters. I was able to get 1400 ish miles out of a rear

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