SUZUKI GSX-R750 SRAD
Scott Redmond on what lies beneath when he strips his bike.
Getting under the skin of a bike will always reveal things that you were blissfully unaware of. My Suzuki GSX-R750WT is no exception to this unwritten rule, bugger! I know that my bike hasn’t had the easiest of lives, a dented frame and various track day stickers are the most obvious outward indicators that this Suzuki hasn’t led a pampered life, that’s exactly why it appealed to me when I set out to find myself a project. What more would I learn about my bike once I had taken its clothes off? Starting at the front I took the fairing off: the fasteners were all standard Suzuki items and came undone with no issues. I took the sides off first, the right-hand fairing was the better one out of the pair of panels. The left-hand side wasn’t too bad, just a few deep scratches here and there. The top fairing was where my spirits took a dip, the cowling itself is pretty decent, it’s even still fitted with a genuine Suzuki screen (pretty good going when you consider how low they are) plus the urges that most GSX-R owners have to chuck them away and fit anything from double bubble style screens, through to iridium finished ones. Call me old fashioned but I’m not a fan of either way to waste your money. Now, where was I? Oh yes, that top fairing. With all of the fasteners detached the cowling was ready for removal; there was no need to disconnect the headlamp wiring – that wasn’t connected. On each side of the upper cowl are carbon-look air intakes, they are there to force fresh air into the air-box, it’s what gives the SRAD (Suzuki Ram Air Direct) its identity and name… Those 1990s ram-air claims always seemed a bit of a stretch of the facts to me. I mean, to be fair the fresh air can’t really go anywhere else instead of into the throats of the pair of plastic tubes, even if the talk was of the pressure making the power creep up at higher speeds. Sadly, both of these were poorly fitted, one side even lacked the clumsy rubber boots that help to connect it to the fairing and the frame. It wasn’t down to me taking off the lowers either: it had been like this for ages by the look of it. The conversation with the guy who I had bought it from replayed in my head, especially the bit where he’d told me how well set-up this bike was. Perhaps ill-fitting intakes add power and make the bike faster? Without any ram air action my SRAD is actually just SAD. And yes, that’s sad but true. This unhappy theme continued, with the top fairing off I noticed that the mounts to the headlight were both missing, a result of an accident more than likely. The tank came off with no problems, and the one area where I might have discovered more unhappiness was a pleasant surprise. The engine bay was very clean, almost too clean! Despite having a nose around there wasn’t anything too untoward to report. Before taking the seat unit off I took a look in the air-box, again it was all ship shape, a fresh K&N looking back at me, which was nice. The seat unit then came off in one piece, a few of the mounts have broken over the years, nothing overly surprising
there. The last piece of bodywork to come off was the front mudguard; this can often be a painful chore, with road crud seizing the bolts in place, but approaching the four Allen screws with a more positive mindset was rewarded as they all spun out with no swear words uttered by my good self. My Suzuki GSX-R750WT ‘SAD’ was now naked. Taking a closer look at my bodywork was what I did next. One of the reasons I bought this very bike was because I really like the golden colours, having looked at it up close I’m torn on how to move forward. There’s no point getting the imperfections repainted, besides that’s what stickers were made for, to hide tell-tale scuffs. Thing is, I don’t really like stickers on my bikes. I feel that I need to do something about the paint; that scuffed up fuel tank really bothers me. Your average respray these days will set you back hundreds of pounds, then there’s graphics to be purchased. There is another way, that is to buy pattern fairings: but that won’t solve the tank woes. I’ve even explored those Chinese body kits, you get a full fairing, mudguard and seat panels, they cost around £400 according to my ebay research, and you can even pick from a variety of colour options. Some are based on original colours for the GSX-R750WT, others are clones of race team colours. Again, these kits don’t include a solution to cheer up a scruffy tank, so it’s not really helping to solve my problem. The only avenue left to explore is to look for decent used parts. From where I’m sitting that’s looking like my best option. I can probably get away with buying one fairing side and a better tank, there’s plenty of used parts out there, just not too many in my colour. I feel a waiting game coming on, that or give in and fall in love with stickers!
Project Suzuki GSXR750WT SRAD part 4
Sticker hints to bike’s past.
Ram-air duct not sealing!
The SRAD’S bits and bodywork laid bare. What does it reveal?
The front fender was an easy off...