As the custom scene evolves genres become more varied and lines between them thinner, punctuated by pro and amateur builders keen to lay an individual stake in the ground. Repurposing water cooled single cylinder thumpers into bratted-out street trackers has been an ever increasing theme in 2015, and why not? Lightweight engines packing more punch than their capacity suggests and stock suspension capable of soaking up urban hooliganism are a perfect base for fun oriented projects.
Two guys flying the flag for the South African custom scene are Chris and Kyle of Wolf Moto. Their decent looking workshop is in Drummond, 30 miles inland from Durban and so far three cracking builds have emerged from under the roller door.
This Suzuki is build number two and started out life as a 2001 DRZ 400 E, the lighter weight enduro model. The owner wanted a riotous ride capable of hopping city speed bumps and ripping along coast roads so suspension and wheels were pinched from a 2010 supermoto version. To lower the centre of gravity and sharpen up handing the forks were lowered by 80mm and the shock 60mm. The 17″ wheels were spruced up too with black powdered rims, stainless spokes and red anodised nipples.
Another benefit of crosser/enduro donors is that mostly subframes unbolt, making it a whole lot easier to incorporate a new design without laborious welding and grinding. The guys fabricated a brat proportioned set-up from 1″ steel tube along with a neatly hidden battery box. Alcantara tops the saddle providing plenty of grip when the front end heads skyward.
The trusty Suzuki single was cracked open to check the internals for wear, luckily fastidious servicing meant the piston and bore were still within tolerance so a just new gasket set and timing chain were needed. A cleanable Uni air filter keeps the crud out and adds to the soundtrack of the exhaust, that was made entirely in-house from 316 stainless. Now re-geared to 15T-38T the mini speedo should see the needle hit some of the larger numbers with ease. A Feeda Cooling rad imported from California will keep the little Suzy from getting too hot under the collar.
With the original plastic fuel tank and plastics languishing in the spares bin a new vessel needed deciding upon. Not guessed it yet…. Honda CD200. The owner’s brief for style was to take inspiration from Damon Albarn’s band Gorillaz, hence the Japanese Rising Sun red and white colour scheme.
The band’s biggest hit was Feel Good Inc so Chris & Scott emblazoned the tank with that moniker and we’ve no doubt the owner will be doing just that each time he thumbs the starter and heads off down the twisties.