A SAVAGE SINGLE CYLINDER
How Street Chopper does a Suzuki S40
Back in 2014 I was approached by the Suzuki Corporation about partnering with the company on a build of its S40, better known to most of you as the Suzuki Savage. Suzuki has been producing this machine in one form or another since 1986. This particular model single- cylinder thumper has seen all sorts of customization from fabricators on all four corners of the globe. The S40 has gotten so popular that companies like Ryca in Whittier, California, manufactures parts and kits that turn an S40 into a killer little Bobber, Tracker, or custom motorcycle repurposed for tearing up the streets.
When we received the bike from Suzuki the only mandate it had was to not cut the frame. Well, that lasted about a day until we went over to see our pal Ryan Rajewski of the aforementioned Ryca and picked up some of its parts that required some chopping. Then it was on!
Our pal Dave of Davey’s Welding further chopped the frame to get the Biltwell seat pan and Lowbrow Customs’ peanut tank and ribbed fender to fit and look good on the frame. Davey also installed the Ryca battery box, Biltwell muffler, and other items that needed attention with a torch.
The bike was then taken over to Jim Iiams of IMZZ Elite where he painted the sheet metal the perfect shade of early ’80s Suzuki RM dirt bike yellow. I sourced a set of original 1981 RM465 decals, and Jim used the varied blue stripe section on the tank. Jim also made a set of custom rear shock struts that look similar to a set of ’80s BMX cranks. From there I installed a set of 1-inch Pangea Speed Atlas handlebars cut to accept an internal throttle coupled with a set of Biltwell risers. The bike then had a Ryca Chain Drive kit and number plate with hidden LED light installed along with a set of 7/8 -inch dirt bike grips finishing off the “Street Ripper” look of the bike.
It took a couple of years to get it done, but as you can see we transformed the shit out of this ugly metric duckling. And having super-hot Jennifer Irene draped over it doesn’t really hurt the looks of it either, huh? SC