Welcome to the homepage of our six part V-Strom 650 Adventure Tourer project.
In mid 2012, Suzuki Canada loaned us a new 650 V-Strom to use as a long termer to modify into an adventure touring machine. after two years in our possession we did a whole load of work to it. Here’s an index of our updates along with a tally of what has been done, along with costing and direct links. Enjoy.
PART 1 – The Initial Test
Editor ‘Arris flies to Ontario to pick up the bike and takes the long way round to get home and do a test on the bike in the process.
PART 2 – Adding farkles
Here we add the touring components, namely bags, crash protection, adjustable screen, exhaust system, accessory lights, accessory socket, heated grips, bars, barkbusters, peg lowers and a taller seat (’cause it’s for ‘Arris and he’s lanky).
PART 3 – Adding more farkles
And now the adventure stuff with the lion’s share of the work being devoted to getting the elusive wire wheels and brakes (oh the pain, the pain!). But we also fit a nice set of dual sport tires, a large pad for the kick stand, some convertable pegs and some guards for the lights.
PART 4 – The final tweaks
‘Tis the season to test the beast! But ‘Arris comes up with a few more requirements including a rad guard, small screen, fork springs, centrestand and a hybrid exhaust system.
A what? Yes, a hybrid exhaust system as the Hindle was interfering with the bashplate and centrestand so he mated the Suzuki system with the Hindle muffler. A bastard offspring results.
PART 5 – Dirty Conclusions
Suzuki brands the Strom as an adventure bike, but aside from tall suspension, a slightly larger 19” front wheel and some styling cues, there’s not a whole lot to back up the claim.
So we added all the bits to make it more dirt friendly and took it into the trails. How did it do?
Well, mixed results.
PART 6 – Touring Conclusions
Even if you don’t sink a dime into the Strom, it makes for a great touring bike. Of course, it helps to have some luggage, a better screen, heated grips and a few adaptations for the lanky ‘Arris.
Question is, what is the best bang for the dime ?
COSTING (Suppliers shown in brackets)
Tall Seat (Suzuki) CA$179.47
12V Power Outlet (Suzuki) CA$64.30
Oxford Heated Grips (Twisted Throttle) US$79.95
Trax Bags – 27 litre (Twisted Throttle) US$364.99
Trax Bags – 38 litre (Twisted Throttle) US$379.99
SW Motech mounting kit for bags (Twisted Throttle) US$284.99
SW Motech locks for bags (Twisted Throttle) US$49.99
SW Motech Crash Bars (Twisted Throttle) US$219.99
SW Motech Bash Plate (Twisted Throttle) US$259.99
SW Motech Bag Mounts (Twisted Throttle) US$26.00
Denali DM1 lights (Twisted Throttle) US$209.99
SW Motech brackets for Denali DM1 lights (Twisted Throttle) US$55.00
Barkbusters (Twisted Throttle) US$155.00
Pro Taper Handlebars (Dual Sport Plus) CA$59.99
Hindle exhaust system ($499.99) and muffler ($324.99) CA$824.98
Madstat brackets ($97.95) and touring screen ($120) US$217.95
Adventure Tech Footpeg and Control Lowering Kit US$55.00
Front ($349.95) and rear ($449.95) wheel hubs (Rad Manufacturing) US$799.90
Heavy Duty custom spokes and nipples (Buchanan’s) US$198.00
Excel front ($260) and rear ($318) rims (Buchanan’s) US$578.00
(Labour per wheel is $97, so the total for built wheels would be US$1,769.90)
Front ($615.22 pair) and rear ($146.41) discs (EBC Brakes) US$761.63
V-Pad brake pads (US$42.89 per pair) (EBC Brakes) – US$128.67
110/80 B19 59T TL K60 Scout (Heidenau Tires) US$182.00
150/70 B17 69T TL K60 Scout (Heidenau Tires) US$245.00
SW Motech kick stand foot (Twisted Throttle) US$50.00
SW Motech On-road/off-road footpegs (Twisted Throttle) US$158.99
Ventura light guards US$49.00
* based on US dollar at par at time of project. Does not include shipping and taxes.