I Purchase a used 2009 Suzuki Dr with about 1300 miles on it , very clean bike.I did a number of modifications to it starting with the new 5.3 gallon Acerbis fuel tank.The fuel tank is awesome I got the naturual color semi transaprent one although Acerbis makes a number of different colors including grey for the new 2012 DRs.The tank went on easily and actually is wide enough to prvide some what of a wind shielding fairing effect.The next mod was a windshield from Cee Bailey, the commuter model.It was not as tall as I had anticipated and this a bit of a negative. Also since the windshield attaches to the front plasctic headlight fairing it flexed back when up at freeway speed so the wind deflection was somewhat compromised. I ended up fabricating a bracketing system that held the headlight fairng in place from some aluminum angle and strap and now the winshield stays rock solid at highway speeds, problem solved and am now pretty satisfied with the windshield install. Next I bought some SW Motech side case carriers and mounted some Pelican 1430 top loader cases on them. I bough some desert tan Pelicans this time as it seemed that I was always getting the dust off my last ones which were black, on my Vstrom. I also installed a Vista cruise control, its about $30 and easy to install and owrks well. Pretty much my last major mod was the installation of the new 2012 Pat Walsh Skid plate for engine protection. It seemed like the most robust one in its construction. Pat Wlash processed my order quickly and I got it in 3 days. It fit perfectly and was an easy install, about 15 minutes .This Bash plate was the thickest of those made and has good bottom , frontal and front side protection with the its genrously sized side wings for front engine protection.There is good access good access for changing the oil and has rubber damping on the rear mounting points. Its finish was flawless looking, and its made in the USA. The previous owner had installed the lowering kit and also the shorter OEM Suzuki side kick stand . The previous owner also installed a very nice after market, made in the USA Gel seat. Fit wise, the bikes height is just right for me now. Im about 145 lbs , 5 ft, 10" and have an inseam size of 32 . When the factory tread gets some more wear on them Im considering going to Heidenau Scout K60 tires as Im planning a possible ride up to Alaska next year in the spring Ill be installing some Moose tubes also at that point..I had Heidenau on a previous bike ,a 2009 Suzuki Vstrom and was impressed by them. That bike is now in Alaska with its new owner who road it up there from Arizona ( where I live) and it proved to be a good choice for the ride. Its supposed to be a hard/ sticky tire with a wide spaced Chevron tread design and is considered to be a good 50/50 choice for tarmac and off road, made in Germany and reasonably priced. One can expect to get 6K miles or more out of them. Anyway, hope this info is helpful to some of those out there , happy trails , DR BOB

Oct 12, 2012

Did ride up to Yellowstone Nat. park from Az. Needed treads when I got to Cody Wyoming and ended up getting some Michelin Anakee 2 tires as this is what the dealer had on hand. Am pretty impressed by the tires and their Dualsport purpose use .They seem to be wearing well now with about 1500 miles on them. Still intend to put the Heindenau Scout K60s on the bike next tire change.

Am istalling heated grips on the bike, purchased some Symtec , Heat Demon heated grips. Am upgrading the alter-nators stator with a high out one to boost its output by about 25%, or 50 Watts . The DR alternator output is about 200 Watts and the regular electrical running geat doesnt leave a lot of spare capacity although the particular Symtec heated grip warmers I purchased dont draw a lot ( about 40 Watts). Some people have posted that they can run their DR650 bikes with no upgrade to the Stator with a small wattage margin to spare. I decided although to upgrade the alternators stator to prevent a possible malfunction/overload condition while I am on the road. I purchased the high ouput alternator stator for around $ 200 . The upgraded ( high output) stator was an aftermarket one from Ricks Motorsports Electrics .Its model number is 21-807H . You will need a new gasket for the stator case when doing the change out. I will post later after I have new stator and grip installed and give an update. Until then, happy trails. DR BOB                                                                                                                           Jan 20, 2013

The addition of heated grips to the DR took me into some unitended territory. In the process of adding the heated grips I decided to upgrade the bike with some ProTaper SE handlebars. Also added the Cycra Probend CRM handguards and shields to the bike . As for the heated grips installation, I decided to upgrade to some KOSO heated grips. It went on pretty easy but i found out pretty fast that you have to use some Hi-temp adhesive to make the them stick, especially to the throttle tube side. I ended up using the JB Weld ,two part epoxy, the regular slow setting kind. The KOSO heated grips use a temp contoller that  has five points of adjustment.The controller also straps on easily to foam insulated cross bar on the ProTaper handlebars.

As for the stator upgrade it went pretty well. The new stator installed relitively easy and seems to owrk well. Idid have a bit of an oil leak from the side case gasket ( new) and needed to use some sealant with it to get a tight seal.

I had bought a Synergy 2.0 heated vest and wired it electrical harness into the bike with a relay . Also i used another relay for the heated grips. Both relays are activated by the power for the license plate light to power up when you trun on the ignition.

I had decided to install something to monitor the voltage on the bike now and also wanted something for head temp, time etc. I ended up installing the Trail Tech Striker. Its a great unit, has a very good bright display with voltage,  time , temps, ambient and head, speedo function alrrm set points etc.. Its relitively compact and easily fastens onto the foam cover of the ProTaper handle bar cross bar.

Anyway ,last week I finally took the bike out for ride early to meet a friend for breakfast about 25 miles away .It was about 20 degrees ( F.) out . I have to admit, my finger tips were a bit on the frozen side after a while. The heated vest was a blessing and worked well. I think the Cycra handguard shields are a tad on the small size for keeping very  cold air off your hands so that was a bit of a relavation. The Trail Tech Striker worked well with keeping an eye on the voltage when I was rding with all the heated gear on . It looked as though I was right on the edge of using all the wattage output ( 250 watts) of the new larger stator from what I could tell from the Strikers display. Based on the voltage readings I saw I decided to upgrade the bikes tail light bulb to an LED type. This saved me about 1 amp and the cost was about $20 and easy to do . The voltage now seems stable with this last mod.  with all the heated gear and grips on . The LED bulb is made by Emgo ,part number 48-67745 . ( available ProCycle .com).

As for the cold fingers  I decided to get some Strap-on hand shields from Mooseracing ( available They are very large insulated covers that strap onto your existing handguard shields and  probably atleast triple the surface area shielding your hands from the cold air. Im pretty sure these larger shields should help with the cold hands. Ill give an update on these Moosracing cold weather shields when I next post/do a ride test .Well all for now   Later, Bob

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