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Bronco78's Trail bike to SM build.. what a trip it has been

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8 Years.. Bought new in 2003.. Road it on the street for 3 months, then a little trail, then a LOT of street over that first summer, even a few 250 miles trips between home in OR and work in WA. Bitten by the dirt bug after a long stretch of just street and road track bikes.. It was ON. :ride:


Normal progression, jetted the BSR, added springs front a rear.

Did Kouba lowering links, and RT valving, KTM fork Guards, CFC case guards, Unibiker Rad guards, Cycra Rad shrouds, skid plate, Cycra Hand guards, 1st Muzza Full Exhaust, Bars, Steering damper, HID light, Gel seat, IMS 3.2 tank, 90mm 13.5:1 CR piston, HC Stage 2 (old style) And jetting nightmares

Tossed BSR36, in parts pile, added Used FCR39.. jetted for weeks..

Tossed used FCR39 in trash can, installed New FCR 39, jetted in minutes.

Second gear bushing seized to the CS, toasted a bunch in the transmission, rebuilt that.

Magura Juice clutch added for the first 24 GP race. 120 miles as part of a 4 man team..


Installed MT 94mm BB kit destroyed crank up after 6.2 miles and a failed valve.


Rebuilt with 95mm BB kit, added new E head and Some SS valving and Ti tops, plus new springs..valving ,, all new head.

HId lights, HID helmet light's and wiring added and IMS 2.6 Team tank for second 24 GP race..

Flywheel starter gear fasteners sheared, trashed stator, flywheel, sprag clutch.

Had to be towed home by a Blue bike, :worthy:


More suspension valving from a local shop in OR just prior to a big race,,,,never.. do suspension work before a race... without lots of testing.

Junked the lowering link, had a former TT expert and sponsor lower the forks and shock, plus work his valving magic while I was deployed.

Home on mid tour leave, lost a piston pin lock, destroyed the motor again while out riding with my son...

Was ready to part it.. When a group of folks from this very forum did a super cool thing and put together a fund, paid Eddie for parts only, he donated his time.. All this while I was deployed again..Wife sent the cylinder to MT, they did a new sleeve and 95.5mm for cost.

Eddie built the motor with 5mm Stroker crank, 95.5mm 13.5:1 piston, head saved, RHC valves, with Megacycle TI springs and TI tops...

20 or so hours, Crap springs failed, trashed two valves and the head..


New RHC valves and RHC springs installed by Eddie... again.. LOL

Trail Tech flywheel installed, burned up stator.. replaced stator and flywheel under Warranty. Though told nothing was wrong with the flywheel :worthy:, re installed OEM flywheel.


Rode for 15 hours on trails and one 6 hours race..

Sheared the flywheel woodruf key,, happens on motors like this some times..


New flywheel, and installed with new key and sleeve and bearing retainer locker.

So as you can see, it has Never Ever been ridden Hard Raced or trashed

Pretty much how I left it when I deployed 6 months ago. attachment.php?attachmentid=8556&d=1217689874

Decided.. It was retire the DRZ,,,,, then,,, Ahh what the heck,, Lets finally make it a SM :thumbsup:

So started buying some parts.. long distance.

Found a new set of wheels



Wife and Son said they would go pick the wheels up...figured they would get um and put in the corner of the garage, until i got home...

Then today i get this attachment.php?attachmentid=17145&stc=1&d=1318973893

My son Cody mounted the wheels, cleaned the carb, and generally, started the process..... Just encase anyone is wondering,, Yes, yes I do have the best wife and two sons in the world, yes my opinion is biased :worthy:

Off we go with the next version of Bronco78's Little DRZ 400 S that could, can, and will.

10 mile motor 2.jpg

wheels on.jpg


Edited by E.Marquez
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That's awesome Eric!!!!

Hope you get home soon. It's going to be a blast to ride. That was great of them to send you a teaser picture

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Holly sh** that's a lot of things to go wrong . I think I would have thrown in the towel . All the best , hopefully your luck changes for the better once you put it in sm trim.

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Awesome news Eric! Are you gonna get a chance to see/ride it in November? Or is time too short?

You are gonna have to come up this way and we'll take you on some little motard routes around here! Will it fit behind the Mustang?

Keep us posted on the progress, and if you need any bits, ask away, I for one have quite a few spares accumulated!


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This build has been a long time coming… I’ve been using the DRZ as a backup bike for more than 2 years.. Since I drove up see Eddie and bought the NOS RM250 from the shop he used to work with… That bike turned I to my trail bike, my Son started racing MX, ,wife stopped riding Dirt due to injuries (that makes her smarter then I ) and street duties are covered down by other bikes…..

But I’ve had a hankering for a new bike for a year or so…not better at anything I don’t have covered, just different.. At this point, the DRZ seemed like the best choice…. If nothing else, it will at least get ridden more, will be available as a buddy bike.

Brian; Thanks for the tour guide offer, not sure when the next time I’ll make it Colorado. will be.. the Family reunion is always at Winter Park.. last time, it was the VTR and 650R behind the truck as play toys… if we drive up again , perhaps I’ll bring the SM as well. In any case, November, is not going to happen.. Started this tour in April 11, finishes May of 12. I’ll be in Kansas for a week come middle of January, but no bike, flying straight there from Afghanistan, then back. I took my Mid Tour leave this trip really early so I could be home from my youngest sons graduation from HS.. Good for that reason, long 10 months after.. :thumbsup: and a week in Kansas seems like a vacation at this point.. Even though it’s work related.

I’m always up for some used parts that fit the bill at a good price from trusted sources…like this wheel set I got off a fellow TT’er..thumb…

And some stuff I’ll do new only, breaks, chain, sprockets.. It’s actually a fun project as my son and wife are at home helping, so it’s another bit of connection for us while deployed.

I wrote this post at 0230 or so this morning,,,after I got done with work for the day.. it’s 0730 now.. and I have to jump on a Helo in an hour and go visit a unit for two days…..but will think though my parts list and build plan here in the next few days..and post up the plan when I get back… Just for giggles.. Since I started this as a shared thought,,, I’ll let the thread run it’s course as I do the build.

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man...you've had a rough road.

i know i've read about all the bad stuff before, but seeing it layed out like that explains where you got all your experience from lol

knowledge & experience can be expensive :thumbsup:

you're gonna love the bike in SM form. very cool of your son to get some work done for ya - the nut don't fall far from the tree.

be safe & thank you for your service

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Hey Eric.

Good luck with the bike, and in AFG. I just got back from there myself. You sure pick poor vacation spots. :thumbsup:

Keep your head down.

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Holeey crap EM...thats a lot of down time. I think I would have left it in the dirt mode and bought a used SM...then you could start the cycle all over again:ride:

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Just ordered.. we will see how they go,, noting bad I can find on the net about the company, and at the buy in price, what the heck.

Searched for these and the price is awesome !

I wish they had them in black color..

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$1725.00 gets me a full build Trail DRZ485 to SM.....

Stage II Build if I like the bike enough to keep going. :thumbsup:

Current RCH Valved, RHC springs, low hour E head will be sold, and then a new E head will go off to eddie for big valves, RHC springs, and some porting as well as

Old no longer available stage II Hot Cams sold off and RHC187's with adjustable sprockets picked up.

FCR39 will get shelved for a FC41MX.


Ya it's a lot of cash,,,, but I was wanting a new bike when I got home anyway.. I really did not want to sell the DRZ, so it was just a natural decision


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You should start building bikes for folks, the whole riding thing isn't working out... awesome thread and journey, rock on :thumbsup:

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You should start building bikes for folks, the whole riding thing isn't working out


Huh? 8 years of use, hundreds of hours at race pace, hundreds more at fast trail pace, hundreds more at family trail pace. Thousands of miles on the street.

It’s been used, not a garage queen..


It’s been sunk


It’s been thrown off the trail


It’s been raced



Bashed in the rocks




You ride um, they break..

During the same 8 years there were thousands of miles on street bikes, hundreds of hours on track bikes..

Get that bike of yours running, and you can come ride with us.. Im sure my wife will wait up for you at the trail intersections. :thumbsup::ride:

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are you imitating the bike, or it you lol

ya both got your heads buried & your tails in the air.

just playing a bit. classic shot.

Ya, thanks :thumbsup::worthy: I have about a dozen shots from all angles...,,, But think about that.. I was riding that trail with my Son and wife.. trail split and I lost sight so I was heading back.. went to scoot across that little puddle.. and sunk,,, Then these two hecklers.. Do they wade in,, NOOOOOOOO, that tack pictures...:worthy:




:ride: Lots of pictures, no little helping hands...

Well ok, she helped after awhile (of course she handed the camera off to the boy and told him to keep taking pics)


smaller stuck1.jpg




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