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Dear Suzuki...

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...is there a single fastner on the DR650 that is not made out of the softest alloy known to man? Even wtih PB Blaster, it's damn near impossible to avoid stripping even the simplest of bolts/allens.

Anyone put together a Grade 8 or Grade 12 stainless fastner kit for the DR650?

Mike O.

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The DR is a great bike but the fasteners and bars are made of some sort of colored velveta product. Used to have a great little fastener store, you could bring in anything you wanted and they would find it for you, too bad they went out of biz, I have found a few internet sites that specialize in bike bolts (race grade stuff) but have not tried them yet.

Ed Teller

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I've not had any problems. Typical Jap bike.

It depends on where you are holding your wrench/ratchet.

For 8 and 10mm I wrap my hand around the ratchet's head. For 12mm I hold it at the neck with my thumb on the head. Just keep giving yourself a little more leverage for bigger bolts.

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I've not had any problems. Typical Jap bike.

It depends on where you are holding your wrench/ratchet.

For 8 and 10mm I wrap my hand around the ratchet's head. For 12mm I hold it at the neck with my thumb on the head. Just keep giving yourself a little more leverage for bigger bolts.

OK, how about those nice little 5mm allen head machine screws that hold the heat shield where the pipe meets the muffler? I don't give a hoot how you hold it, the head is made of silly putty and the only way to remove it is to get out the trusty dremel and cut a slot for a flat head screwdriver.

Mike O.

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Your right about them Mike. I tried to get one off the muffler shield once to replace the one that vibrated out of the pipe shield. Them things are really tight. I ordered my Q2 and when I got it I thought I need to replace the bolt on the pipe shield with one out of the muffler before I put ithe Q2 on. So I took a short ride and when I got back home it was good and hot. The bolt came right out. But when it was cold and I tried to turn it I could tell it was going to strip. I warmed it up good when I removed the one from the clamp that attaches the pipe to the muffler to, just in case.

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Dear Suzuki,,

Thanks so much for saving the planet and recycling my old beer cans into parts for your handlebars and other small parts on this machine.

And that is thinking ahead when supplying the same cheesy replacement parts as the stock ones,we will never run out of thing to strip,rip,or shread on this bike!

PS it does run like a sculded dog after about $400 in mods... Spank You !

recyclingcenter2.jpg

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None of the bolts I've encountered on my '06 DR were torqued down tight enough to strip out. Most were little more than finger tight. I was afraid the thing would disintegrate on the first highway run. While we are dising Suzuki for their build quality... what's with the shop class welds on the frame? I've got a '65 Big Bear Yamaha that has tidier welds. Shouldn't things have improved by now?

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None of the bolts I've encountered on my '06 DR were torqued down tight enough to strip out. Most were little more than finger tight. I was afraid the thing would disintegrate on the first highway run. While we are dising Suzuki for their build quality... what's with the shop class welds on the frame? I've got a '65 Big Bear Yamaha that has tidier welds. Shouldn't things have improved by now?

you would think so....especially since its made in japan....but lets face it....the DR is a dinosaur that really hasnt changed in 10 years.....suzuki will never change it....they'll just stop selling it when the sales numbers get too low and tell you to buy the DRZ.....

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While we are dising Suzuki for their build quality... what's with the shop class welds on the frame? I've got a '65 Big Bear Yamaha that has tidier welds. Shouldn't things have improved by now?

Yeah, this ALMOST put me off at purchase time. I had to go and look for a dealer with a good stock of DRs to make sure mine wasn't a last-off-the-line-on-Friday-arvo job. Nope: they're all just as bad. Would it really be too much to ask them to run a cone brush over the finished welds before the paint?

What really worries me is all this talk about the build quality of the DR being so much better than the KLR. I haven't found one to look over yet, but if they're that much worse they must be virtually sticky-taped together...

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My question is how do you stay that bad at welding? I would think by the end of the first day an average person could be laying beads that look at least that good. I have to say though, I think they have the senior welder (read a guy who can weld reasonably) do the more visible weld like the side frame welds and up on the front end. At least that's how mine looks. Must make the newbie do the stuff you have to get on your hands and knees to see.

As for hardware try McMaster-Carr supply company. They have everything and get it to you in 2 days. Also look for local hardware wholesale/retail places. I just found one 2 minutes from work that has it all. It's a will call style place but they will fill orders of 2 of these and 4 of those... No one even knew that was there, a sign guy who uses crazy HW told me about it. Hmm think Suzuki would build me one using hardware I send them?

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Don't they weld these things with a robot? Probably the same robot they bought in '96. Time to upgrade.

I recall about year ago Suzuki was having issues with welds BREAKING on new GSX-R's now that's scary!

Ed

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My buddy has the 01 DR and I have the 05 KLR; The Suzuki build quality is better than Kawasaki (I think starting in 04, KLR production went to Thailand). How much better....??? On a 1-10 scale..... KLR is a 5. DR is a 7.5

Thats my opinion. I think the DR motor is solid and reliable...... stock. The KLR has its doohicky issues... among others, and does sport a few weak fasteners. I bought a stainless kit off Ebay for my KLR; it was pretty good. Not all of the bolts/ screws were exact copies (type of head, drive), but worked well. I think I even got extras.

If you are having problems with hardware, then give the stainless sets on Ebay a try....... better than the stock tin bolts.

Jesse

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Not to defend Suzuki's grade 1 fasteners but the $15 hand held whack 'em with as hammer impact tools do a very improved job of removing Phillips screws and can be used with sockets, Allen, torx and other twist oriented fasteners. Another aid to not having compresses air tools is a 3/8 drive speed handle for multiple screw/bolt sets like case screws. Also all screw bits must be in great condition and exactly the right size for the slot and get a set of six point sockets up to 17MM at least. :thumbsup:

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I bought a stainless kit off Ebay for my KLR; it was pretty good. Not all of the bolts/ screws were exact copies (type of head, drive), but worked well. I think I even got extras.

If you are having problems with hardware, then give the stainless sets on Ebay a try....... better than the stock tin bolts.

Jesse

I would really think twice about stainless fasteners. It is NOT the right material for most motorcycle applications. Maybe acceptable to replace some light screws but things like caliper bolts, fork tube clamp bolts, things that really need to be there SHOULD NOT BE STAINLESS. A good hardened bolt does not get stressed when properly torqued, stainless does and with repeated use can fail. This is probably on the anal side but if you work on the bike a lot a grade 8.8 or even a 10.9 good old steel bolt is a much better choice. Be very wary about what you read on the net. I read a whole article by some jackass who thought he knew enough to write the article, he said grade 8 was "too brittle" and you can't just swap out all the grade 5 stuff. Very untrue, grade 8 or even 10 is not brittle enough to fail in our applications. I know this because I work in research and deal with a Material Scientist, he is an ex racecar mechanic. I talked with him for about an hour on the subject (he could and would have gone on for days). His take onthe stock hardware is "it was designed to take the boat ride over here and that is about it"

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There is a lot that goes into hardware selection and they probably did it for a reason, not just to be cheap. For one, softer and more ductile materials will elastically deform and actually hold the bolt tighter without having to torque the thing super hard. Another benefit to softer fasteners is that they break instead of the female portion of the threads on the frame breaking, meaning you only have to replace a $1 bolt instead of rewelding an entire thread mount back on to the frame. Just remember that stainless high grade bolts will require different torque specs from what are listed in the manual and if you over torque them, they could be stronger than the female threads and strip them, so you may want to use thread locker (like Loctite) instead of using alot of torque.

As for the cheapness of the welds and anything else on the bike, I'd much rather deal with having it look somewhat tacky then to have Suzuki jack the price up. It works and none have failed so far and I sure didn't buy the bike for looks.

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Wybs

.............. I know what you mean; I only swapped out "cosmetic" hardware. I know better than to mess with motor, drive, steering and brake hardware. But it's good to point that out. :thumbsup:

Jesse

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