Suzuki DR650 Wiki


The DR650SE exhaust system is made up of two parts, the head pipe and muffler. The head pipe is attached to the cylinder head by a two bolt flange and sealed with a copper crush gasket. The muffler slips into the head pipe with a sleeve-type sealing gasket. The head pipe has a built in clamp that pinches down on the sealing sleeve. Both the head pipe and muffler are stainless steel, although for some reason Suzuki paints the head pipe black.

The stock muffler is quite heavy, weighing in at nearly 15 lbs., so it is an easy target for weight reduction and adding performance. This comes with a noise increase however, and some slip-on mufflers are very loud indeed.

Grinding the Weld[]

A very popular modification is grinding the weld that attaches the cylinder head mounting flange to the inside of the stock head pipe. The welds are very inconsistent from the factory, and are a restriction point and turbulence inducer for the exhaust system. This weld is stainless steel and thus very tough to grind without the proper tools. The fastest method is with an air grinder and a round end carbide burr. If you choose to grind this weld, be very careful not to remove too much material and grind into the pipe diameter which could weaken the joint. It has been pointed out that the actual port size is smaller than the pipe inner diameter, so a completely smooth grind may not be necessary, but square edges in an exhaust system can add to turbulence and detract from performance.

Spark Arresters[]

When considering an aftermarket exhaust, be aware that when riding on much of the public land in the USA, and in all US National Forest areas, you will be required to have a USFS-approved spark arrester on your exhaust system. Having no proof that you are using an approved arrester could earn you a ticket if you encounter a Forest Ranger in the field. And not using one genuinely could, in certain circumstances, actually cause a forest fire. These devices catch hot particles of carbon, which can break off the inside of your exhaust system, from leaving the pipe and landing on tinder in the forest. These are generally wire mesh screens mounted inside the end of the exhaust, and shaped so that the area that the exhaust can pass through is much larger than the exhaust tip diameter, so a well-designed spark arrester will not restrict flow or harm performance. Most are designed so that they can be removed and cleaned periodically, further ensuring that they will do their job without restricting the bike's power.

Build Your Own System[]

Another very popular option is building your own 01/02 GXSR1000 muffler based exhaust system. This system is as light as the leading after-market systems, has a deep "I'm a big bore thumper" sound without being too loud, makes better torque than the leading over the counter pipe while looking very clean and OEMish. The greatest attribute is that it keeps in form with the very low maintenance persona of the big DR by NEVER NEEDING TO BE REPACKED! With the availability of the [Hindle and TwoBrothers mid-pipes and the recent availability of bolt-on mounting components that eliminate or reduce the need for welding and other machining work the project has become easier to tackle for the rider with limited fabrication experience.


Aftermarket Exhausts[]

  • Complete Systems
    • The all stainless steel Staintune made in Australia. A beautiful polished system that does not require repacking. It has an oversized polished stainless steel head pipe. The major drawback to this system is that it is not USFS approved. The system is not inexpensive, but you do get what you pay for in this high quality system. Listen 1
  • Just The Head Pipe
    • Jesse the Suzuki DR Guru at Kientech Engineering sells an all polished stainless steel oversized head pipe for the 96-Present DR650SE's. The pipe features welded on threaded bosses so the original heat shield can be attached. It is the FMF stainless head pipe.
    • ProCycle also lists a new FMF stainless head pipe for the DR650.
  • Just The Muffler
    • FMF Racing has a muffler for the 96-Present DR650SE's that wieghs in at just over 5 lbs, is USFS approved and has a stainless steel mid-pipe. Of all of the slip-on systems FMF's Q2 pipe claims to have the lowest sound output @ 94 db. The draw-back to most any straight through slip-on type muffler is you have to repackthe muffler at regular intervals to keep the systems performance and sound levels at their optimum.
    • The Marving muffler for the 96-Present DR650SE's is a work of art but is so far very unattainable in the US. It is touted to feature low sound output with a deeper more refined note. Like the Staintune muffler the Marving muffler does not need repacking.... and just like most other Euro pipes it does not have USFS approval. Listen 1
    • Two Brothers Racing makes a slip-on system for the big DR that is as beautiful and lightweight as it is loud. However, the add-on P4 (-3 to -5 dB) or P3 (-6 to -8 dB) sound suppression tips are claimed to significantly reduce noise with minimal power loss. The M7 V.A.L.E. exhaust comes with a removable USFS-approved spark arrester.
    • Pro Circuit also makes some slip-on type systems for the DR650. The quietest one they offer is their 496 slip-on system which is 96 db.
    • SuperTrapp makes the tuneable IDS2 muffler with quiet and race cores for the DR650. USFS approved.
    • Leo Vince makes an aluminum X-3 slip on for the DR650 that never needs repacking. It has a USFS approved spark arrestor, and weighs a claimed 3.53 Kg.

Other links that can help[]

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