Page last modified: 06/30/14


Note: Email addresses and links listed in this Q&A section may no longer be valid!


DATE: March 18, 2000
QUESTION: Tire size question - 1982 GS1100EZ

I think I know the answer after browsing the site, but I would like to know if a 130/80/17 is a suitable/desirable replacement for the stock 130/90/17 on the GS1100EZ. I am planning to use K591 Dunlop's on both ends. thanks for the great site.

RIDER: Michael Durant

REPLY: Frank Perreault
Sure will, it's what I run on mine.

DATE: March 3, 2000
QUESTION: Confirm the year - 1982 GS1100 katana

Can anyone tell me the year of my bike? Frame Nº-GS-110X-532622 , Motor Nº-S-110X-152966

RIDER: José Duarte

REPLY:  Dina Gerolymou 
G'day, your motorcycle build date should be next to your frame number. The frame # you quote looks like an SZ model which were built/sold between 1981/1982. If you have a silver engine then it is a SZ, if you have a black engine it is a SD sold 1983 onwards.

DATE: January 29, 1999
QUESTION: I have problem with a sound! - 1987 GS500E

I have a 1989 gs500e (i know you only do to 1987 but i thought you might be able to somewhat help) is making an odd sound coming from the cylinders. i think that it may be the spark plugs but i am not sure because the some comes and goes away every so often. my friend thinks it may be a bent valve. i was wondering if you could give me some idea of what it may be? please mail to my email. thanx a lot.

RIDER: jamie kyes

REPLY: Paul Griffin
I saw your mail on GSResources about funny noise from cylinders, I had something very similar recently on my GS550M which was simply a leaky outlet manifold - I tightened up the bolts on the exhaust and what I thought was a drastic valve problem disappeared.

If you give it a handful then drop off the speed and you get a popping, almost backfire type of sound from the back end then this could well be your problem. I hope it is.  Best Regards.

DATE: December 12, 1999
QUESTION: Specifications - 1983 GS400ED

I recently purchased the Clymer Manual for the GS400 and 450 twins. This manual does not seem to recognized that there were 400cc engines in 1983. I own a 1983 GS400E. What specs should I be looking at and what bike is mine comparable to? Also, as a dumb question, why isn't there a high/low beam switch on my bike? :)

RIDER: Aaron D. Ellis

REPLY: Frank Perreault
See my reply to the question below.

DATE: December 12, 1999
QUESTION: Model designation info needed - 1979 GS400L

I purchased this bike about 4 months ago, and have been trying to find a service manual for it. I can find no record of the GS400L being made in 1979. Everywhere I look, it says that they stopped making it in 1978. I live in Canada, and wonder if Suzuki might have shipped the 1979's to here and not to the USA. Moreover, the model designation 'L' is something I can find no record of. No parts catalogues list it, so I always buy parts for a 1978 GS400, since neither the correct year or model are listed. Any ideas folks? One last thing - my rear tire is a 4.10x18 and I need to know the metric size. Someone told me it was a 110/90x18 but I'm not positive. Thanks

RIDER: David Clarke

REPLY: Frank Perreault
The 400B was made in 1977 and the 400C was made in 1978.  These two years are the only ones when the 400 was made from what I can see.  I could find no reference of a 400L being made though I did find a 425L and a 450L in later years.  This could explain why you can't find parts for it.  You may want to do some more hunting to confirm that you do in fact have a 400.

DATE: November 27, 1999
QUESTION: Headlight bracket swap - 1983 GS750ED

Is the headlight bracket for the ES model different than for the ED model? I am putting an ES fairing on my ED front end.

RIDER: Matthew T. McGarvey

REPLY:  Sandra Whitney
Yes, the headlight/fairing bracket is different. The fairings for the 83 GS750 ES/85 GS700ES and the 83 GS1100ES are all the same. The ES models have grooved in the fork tubes that keep the air balance sleeves in place. I am under the impression that the fork tubes on the E models should be the same. Electrical tape will hold them in place for a time, but the pressure will eventually cause the electrical tape to fail.

DATE: September 18, 1999
QUESTION: Gas Tank and Cams - 1985 GS 1150 ef

How many gallons does this tank hold. Are the cam chain adjusters automatic or do I have to open it up to adjust.

RIDER: Ron Henrie

REPLY: Scott Horner
The fuel tank has an overall capacity of 5.2 gallons, reserve is 10.3 pints. The cam chain adjuster is automatic, although they do need to be reset on occasion. If you do not know how to do this, give me a yell, I'll explain it for you. Best of luck!

DATE: September 18, 1999
QUESTION: "Suzuki Shuffle" - 1982 GS1100E

I have a 1982, GS1100E. I have been told that a vibration at high speeds occurs quite frequently with these models. However, I am experiencing major vibration at almost all speeds and it is virtually impossible to let go of the handle bars. There is no leakage from the fork seals and the front tire appears to be properly balanced. The tire is showing some odd wear patterns, presumably due to the vibration. This has been referred to as the Suzuki Shuffle be some of the people I've spoken with and I have been lead to believe that I must learn to live with this problem. I find it difficult to believe that this is typical. Can you give me any advice?

RIDER: David Banda

REPLY: Frank Perreault
The tires need to be balanced, preferably spun balanced.  Other common causes are a loose steering stem adjustment, front fork oil levels that aren't precisely equal or wheel misalignment.  Wheel alignment problems tend to show up more at high speeds though.  My 81 GS1100 runs with no "shuffle" at any speed.

DATE: September 18, 1999
QUESTION: Speedo faceplate loose - 1980 GS850G

The vibrations from the bike running over the past week have loosen the two screws which hold the speedo faceplate (the plate with the calibrated numbers and holes for the odo and trip odo) down. They are both still in the speedo case, but the faceplate spins freely now. I tried, last evening, removing the back of the instrument cluster, but I'm not sure what to do then. My Clymer's tells me how to remove and replace the whole instrument cluster, not how to get into the case. Any tips, and one question - how do I remove the trip odo reset knob without destroying it?

RIDER: Jon Fincher

REPLY:  Kjell Allzén
Have a GS 850G -81, and same thing happened to me. It seems as the case is not intended to be opened, but I carefully step by step pried open the side of the ring facing backwards on the housing, (the ring that keeps the instrument glass in place), using a sharp screwdriver. You have to open up most of the perimeter of the ring before it can be removed. Then I just remounted the screws, securing them this time with a drop of glue, which of course should have been done in the first place.

When remounting the ring I carefully pressed the back of the ring into place again step by step around the edge of the housing using a Polygrip plier with some tape around the jaws avoiding too much damage on the black ring. The back side of the ring of course got a bit deformed during the process but when mounted in the cluster this is not visible. The tank meter later also stopped functioning and I went through the same procedure with the tachometer in order to repair the meter. This also worked quite well. There might be a better way to fix this, but this is the way I managed to solve it... Good luck

DATE: September 6,, 1999
QUESTION: Appropriate bike for tall beginner? - 1980 GS450S

I am thinking about getting a bike, and I have never ridden before. I am 6'5" and 250+ lbs. I am not a small man. I have been told to start with as small a bike as possible, but I have also been told I would like like a grasshopper on something like a 350cc or so. 

Is this bike going to carry my weight in most riding situations, i.e. hills, highways? Also, on a more general note, how much should we beginners be budgeting for safety gear, like a leather jacket, helmet, gloves, etc.?

RIDER: Daniel Wagaman

REPLY:  Malcolm Evans
Depends on what you want out of a bike and how you ride it. A 450 for a man of your size is OK if you want to use it for gentle commuting, if you want to go fast or tour you will kill it real quick.

Buy something bigger - start with a GS 650 GT realistically. Over here in the UK the Direct Access learners use GS 500's but again are a bit physically small...

Invest as much money in your safety gear as you can. Think - How much do you value your life, and start there. If you fall off a 450 at 60 mph you will hurt just as much as falling off a Hyabusa at 60mph. In this country the medics remove gravel in the ER with a nail brush.

If you can't / don't want to buy full leathers, avoid man-made fibres next to your skin, when you slide it heats up and melts into your skin. Yummy!

DATE: August 21, 1999
QUESTION: Engine with intermittent cylinder, cable routing -  1979 GS850GN

My bike has covered 23000miles and runs very well once warmed up however when starting from cold it only fires on three pots. Number 1 pot (right hand side looking down from seat ) only kicks in when the bike is given acceleration and once it kicks in the bike will run well all day . I don't know if the fault is caused by carbs or possibly coils . The bike is fitted with a JAMA 4 into 2 exhaust system with the original airbox etc . 

Also I'm having trouble with a very stiff clutch lever . The cable has been changed but the lever still gives sore hand after 1/2 hour of use . I stripped the bike down and it may be that I have not routed cable properly . Could you give me a clue as to the proper route . Any help would be appreciated . Keep up the good work with a great web site . Its nice to read about other GS riders from all over the world in my little corner of Scotland .

RIDER: Bruce Hope

REPLY: Joe Amidon
Check to see if the choke valve is opening up on the cylinder that doesn't fire ( I call the right hand cylinder # 4). If the set screw is missing or loose, that cylinder won't be choked, and so won't run until the engine gets warm. It will run better at higher revs when cold because only then is it getting the gas it needs.
REPLY: Tom Glidewell, Jr.
Here's an idea or two that may help you:

First, Joe Amidon is correct. Your problem is with carb #4 (not 1!). As you sit on the bike, the cylinders are 1-4 starting with the one on your extreme left.

I have a 79 GS 850GN (31,000 miles), which I have owned since 1980. It is extremely cold natured. One or more of the cylinders will not fire regularly while warming up unless you apply full choke which also boosts the RPM's up to about 3-4000 or more. Not a good idea when the engine's cold, in my book. And riding the bike this way is like riding with a throttle stuck half-open.

I've concluded that my problem is probably carburetor float levels that are set too low. I'm not 100% sure the float level is too low because to conclusively determine the condition, you need a special tool to enable you to actually see the fuel level while the engine is running. But the following is something that may give you a clue as to whether the float level is the problem.

Try this: Put bike on centerstand when engine is full cold. Your rear tire should be off the pavement an inch or more if you have the right size tires. Mount bike and start engine with only enough choke to keep engine running at about 1500-2000 RPM. Now APPLY FRONT BRAKE (so bike won't roll off centerstand) and rock bike fore and aft rapidly (pivoting on the centerstand). Stand up on the footpegs and rock the front end up and down while applying the front brake. If the fuel level is too low, the rocking action should get the fuel up into the proper circuit and the engine should immediately begin firing on all 4 cylinders--mine does! After a minute or so of rocking the engine may begin to bog down as the rocking has probably made one or more of the cylinders too rich now. So stop rocking for a moment til the troubled cylinder starves again then repeat process. Follow this scheme till engine runs smoothly without rocking. Next step: adjust float levels or learn to live with it! Please let me know if this is any help.

Re your clutch problem, let me say that I doubt it's the cable routing that's causing the problem, but here's the way mine is routed and it's as smooth as butter:

From the lever the cable goes between the speedometer and the handlebar just inboard of the instrument cluster left mounting bolt. From there the cable passes along the left side (as you sit on the bike) of the steering head and under the gas tank along the frame toward the carbs. It comes down between Carbs #1 and #2, lodging itself against the airbox where carb #1's rubber air intake enters the airbox (its wedged there, you might say). From there, it just naturally goes to its boss on the clutch cover, passing by the rear of the oil pressure sending switch on the way. NOTE: My Genuine Suzuki shop manual (in highlighting the 1980 model yr changes) shows a guide or clamp to hold the cable in place as it passes between carb 1 and 2 on the 1979 "GN" model, but it doesn't show up anywhere in the 1979 manual that I've been able to find! My bike has never had it or needed it (at least, not since I've owned it).

One more thing: Get a pressure cable oiler and lube cable with WD-40 till it runs clear at the clutch end. Do not re-oil cable. The WD-40 does the job! Clutch action will be lighter and will not get stiff in winter!

DATE: August 21, 1999
QUESTION: Intermittent tach problem - 1979 GS750L

Having a problem with tach.. losing rpm indication.. usually after taking a hard bump.. or when quickly pacing thru the gears.. cable appears to be all right.. is there some advice about check the tach head.. or does it have to be replaced?? thanks for the info

RIDER: Tim Gavere

REPLY: Frank Perreault
Make sure that both ends of the tach cable are tightly fastened and that the cable is in the connections correctly.  You might what to check to make sure that the tach gear in the valve cover isn't loose or stripped the next time you adjust your valves.  If those things are fine, if you're feeling adventurous you might want to try disassembling the tach assembly and see if a little cleaning and a couple of squirts of WD-40 in the right places might help.

DATE: August 21, 1999
QUESTION: Clutch hard to pull in - 1982 GS750T

My friend's clutch on his 82 GS750 is extremely difficult to pull in. We have replaced the clutch cable with no success and have also tried rerouting it several times. We took the clutch cover off, but found nothing wrong. We did however find red clutch springs and we suspect that it is a heavy duty clutch. My GS750 has a heavy duty clutch, but while harder to pull in than stock, it isn't nowhere near as hard to pull in as my friend's. The clutch perch seems to be good. The bike does have narrower drag handle bars on it. Does anyone know what is wrong? Thanks alot.

RIDER: Cameron Grossl

REPLY: Sandra Whitney
One of the most common reasons for clutch levers feeling stiff is due to replacement of the original handlebars with lower and/or narrower bars. You will have to try re-routing the cable again (trying to keep the cable as straight as possible) or get a new clutch cable that has the same free length (difference in length between the cable and the sleeve) but is overall shorter than the original. You might want to try using a 80-82 GS750E cable, since the E model came with lower bars than the T model. The 83 GS1100ES should also work.

DATE: August 21, 1999
QUESTION: 1 key that starts 2 bikes - 1982 82 GS1100G and 80 GS850G

I've heard that the ignition key on my bikes only needs to have 1 side cut in order to work. I would like to have 1 key that will work in both of my bikes (82 GS 1100G and GS 850G) Before I hack a $8 blank, which side of the key works the ignition lock?

RIDER: Jay Horine

REPLY: Sandra Whitney
It's really irrelevant which side works the ignition. Once you have one side cut for the 850 and the other side cut for the 1100, just stick the key in the ignition and try turning it. If it doesn't turn, turn the key 180 degrees and it will work. Make a mark on the key to remember which direction to insert the key. The gas tank might work opposite the ignition and the seat lock might have a different direction also.

The two cut key is a common remedy for anyone who had to replace the ignition switch (or seat lock or gas cap or helmet lock) on their bike.

DATE: August 21, 1999
QUESTION: Shaft drive rear wheel swap? - 1982 GS1100GK

My bike came with a 16" rear wheel. I was told that some shaft drives were made with 17" rear wheels. If this is the case can you please tell me what year & model bike has one? Thanks in advance,

RIDER: Mark Dougan

REPLY: Bill Patten
All 850G and 1100G standards, not the L models, have 17 inch rear wheels although I think the 79 is a tube type.

DATE: August 21, 1999
QUESTION: Rims/Tires 1982 GS1100GK

I am wanting to go to a 17 inch rim (from a 16)on the back. Does anyone know if any of the other G models use a 17 and if so would it fit right on my bike. Thanks for your help.

RIDER: Mike Brock

REPLY: Bill Patten
Any 1100G or 850G, the standard not the L model, has a 17 inch rear wheel that will bolt right on but you might want to stick with an 82 to be sure the wheels match.

DATE: August 21, 1999
QUESTION: 850 VS 1100G - 1979 GS850



REPLY: Bill Patten
I've gone from an 850 to an 1100 myself and the gas mileage is similar. in going from a 79 to an 83 you'll also get a better headlight, electronic ignition, CV carbs, tubeless tires and, in my opinion, better styling. size is the same between the two. plus a little more power and a little taller gearing. if it's a good deal I'd go for it.

DATE: August 8, 1999
QUESTION: Speedometer change - 1982 GS1100E

This bike came from the factory with an 85 MPH speedometer. I would like to replace the speedometer with one that reads higher speeds (140 MPH). Is there a speedometer that will replace mine, and fit into the stock instrument panel?

RIDER: Phil P. Kamp

REPLY: Scott Horner
The speedo from a 83 GS 1100E (not the ES) will pop right in there with no problems. Also different on the 83 cluster, the tach reads a 500rpm higher, 9500 redline. I may have access to a set if you are ever interested. Best of luck!

DATE: August 1, 1999
QUESTION: Recommendations on first Suzuki - 1984 GS1150ES

I am in a position to pick up a 1984 gs1150es. 18,000 miles, mint condition. I plan on using the bike for zipping around on day trips but also for a couple long (4000mile) tours. Does anyone know anything about these models? Will it fit my needs? What is the bike worth? Seller asking $2000

RIDER: Mike Swanicke

REPLY:  Malcolm Evans
Yep I'd say that was an exceptionally good price - UK prices for a good one start at around 2000 UKP (i.e. about 3,500 US?)

Cons: Not a good bike for around town as very big and heavy.

Clip-ons gave me wrist ache which is why it went in favour of my 1100 EZ streetfighter last year, block is basically overbored item which gives lots of vibration - fit foam grips at the earliest opportunity - and my wife would get white knuckle after about 30 miles on the back holding onto the grab rail.

35mpg!!! Eats chain & back tyres!!! Fit an auto chain oiler (Scottoiler)

Finally, a more obscure one - the 16" front wheel makes steering so responsive that you may find unexplained weaves and wobbles. This is caused by the wind catching your jacket - a leather jacket with a relaxed grip will be fine, try hanging on like grim death while wearing an oversuit and you will be all over the road.

Pros: The biggest fastest best handling GSX 11 ever built, the most powerful road bike in its' day and still used for the vast majority of drag bikes. Stock should pull 145mph top end / low 11's in the quarter mile. Rebore to maximum factory oversize (2mm) takes it to 1170cc, add a decent aftermarket pipe (V&H) and a set of GSX-R 1100 Slingshot carbs and you're set for 160mph.

Slingshot carbs push straight onto the stock intake rubbers, also GSX-R slingshot brakes (twin pot Nissin) bolt straight on to the fork legs with no other mods and work with stock brake discs. For even more fun try using late model GSX-R wheels.....

REPLY: Chris Skanderup
The GS 1150 is one of my all time favorite bikes. With low miles and in stock condition, I should say $2000 is not a bad deal. Check for service records, and all the usual before buying a used motorcycle. Have fun!

DATE: July 31, 1999
QUESTION: Rattle and vibration - 1982 GS100GK

Hi Yall I have a 82 gs1100gk with 17000 miles on it. It has started to have a bad rattle and vibration at about 3800 to 4000 RPM's. This gets worse as the RPM's go up. It seems to be coming from the left side cover. I was told it could be the cam chain or the cam chain tensioner. I would not think it the cam chain at 17k miles. I loosened the tensioner bolts and snapped the spring loaded knob a couple of times then retightened the mounting bolts. I still have the noise. I have a trip planned for the 16th of July that will cover some 1500 miles. Can you give me any ideas on what the noise may be? Thanks Russ

RIDER: Russell Larges

REPLY: Chris Skanderup
If the vibrations are severe, and the rattling is very noticeable, I would pull off the stator cover on the left and double check that my rotor had not come loose and was wreaking havoc with my stator. Potentially a very ugly scenario as it could hatch the the end of the crank and the main bearings. Just a suggestion, tho. Good luck. 

P.S. The cam chain tensioner is in the middle of the engine, not the left side on your GS.

DATE: July 31, 1999
QUESTION: Shock mount replacement - 1979 GS750EL

Is it possible to remove and replace the stud that the rear shocks mount to? A previous owner installed the wrong size nut on the stud and now the first 3/4" of threads are non-existent. I need to replace the stud or tap some new threads. I looks like I could knock the stud out of the frame and install a new one. Can anyone confirm this?

RIDER: Les Chamness

REPLY: Frank Perreault
Any good machine shop that also does welding should be able to do this.  Talk to your local auto parts place or Suzuki shop to see if they can make recommendations.  It won't be cheap though.

DATE: July 31, 1999
QUESTION: Screeching noise - 1982 GSX750EZ

I own a GXS750EZ (1982) imported from the USA with 28k miles on the clock. The problem I have with the bike is that it has developed an awful screeching noise which I am unable to trace. The noise sounds like two metal surfaces grinding together without a lubricant, but only occurs between 50-60mph. The sound appears to come from the front of the engine but this may be an illusion. So far I have replaced the camchain, final drive chain and sprockets, and the speedometer and tacho cables thinking I might have solved the problem noise by doing so. Despite this awful intermittent noise the bike runs as smooth as clockwork but its driving me nuts. I will gladly strip the engine down to solve this problem if I only knew what I was looking for. Can anyone who might have had this or a similar problem help.

RIDER: Russell Drake

REPLY: Chris Skanderup
Just an idea - remove, clean and relubricate your speedo drive on the front wheel. My 650 had the same noise, sounded like a banshee on steroids, and the fix was in the speedo drive. Also, your speedo itself could be making the noise. Give it a shot of WD40 into the speedo cable socket, see if that helps.
REPLY: Russell Drake
I took your advise and checked the speedo drive which turned out to be fine, but what I did find was that the wheel bearings had been pushed in too tightly and had jammed, the wheel was actually turning on the shaft not through the bearings. I've freed the bearings and everything fine. Thanks for your help.

DATE: July 31, 1999
QUESTION: Can the bike be towed safely? - 1982 GS650 (shafty)

I'll be acquiring a DOA 82 GS650 (with 5000 miles) within the next week, and I have a question concerning towing. I've looked into the single-rail trailers and the flatbed trailers and while they are all fine methods of toting a 'scoot down the highway, they all have a few drawbacks: Where to store the trailer and, of course , TAXES ! I've come across a company - Magenta- which offers a system that attaches to the front wheel of your bike, and slips into your 2-inch trailer hitch (Motorcycle Caddy). Your bike is thus towed directly behind your vehicle with the bike's front wheel off the ground. No storage problems and no trailer TAXES ! My concern is this: they specifically say in their ads that you should contact your dealer if you have a shaft-driven motorcycle. Well.........I have and I can't seem to find anyone who will give me an answer. So......does anyone know if a shaft-driven 82 GS650 can be towed in neutral without messing up the drive ? I don't think it would, but if anyone has any experience or knowledge, I'd SURE appreciate it ! This bike is mint cherry and I'd sure hate to mess it up. I'm going to have enough work on my hands cleaning out 4 Mikuni carbs without worrying about towing. Thanks ! And when I get my bike , you can bet I'll submit a picture to the registry.

RIDER: Rick Greulich

REPLY: Martin Sanderse
NOPE! Don't do it. I just finished rebuilding mine for an engine problem and discovered this: The oil pump feeds a large oil passage that goes across the engine. There is a passage that goes to the ball bearings in the transmission and another that goes to the bearings for the shaft after the bevel gears. If you tow without the engine running, the oil pump will not be supplying oil to the transmission bearings, and the oil level isn't high enough to do it by "splash."

On the other hand, can you tow it backwards?

DATE: July 6, 1999
QUESTION: Side cover swap - 1981 GS850L

Will side covers from a 1980-81 GS850G fit on my 1981 GS850L?

RIDER: Terry Trotter

REPLY: Sandra Whitney
No, they will not fit. The L model side covers are shaped more like an upside down triangle. The 1100G side covers should be interchangeable with the 850G (standard model).

DATE: July 6, 1999
QUESTION: The bike has a buzz - 1982 GS1100G

My '82 GS1100G is a smooth runner at low speeds but gets increasingly buzzy once I go over 50 mph in 5th (or comparable rpm in lower gears). I tried adjusting the valves and syncing the carbs, but it had minimal effect on the smoothness above 4000 rpm. As best I can determine, it's an engine vibration problem; with clutch in and engine idling at highway speed the buzz goes away. Am I overlooking something obvious? I don't know if it's related or not, but I get some backfiring when I back off the throttle. Thanks for your help.

RIDER: Steve Mustoe

REPLY: Chris Skanderup
Sounds like it's running too rich. How's your plugs look?

DATE: May 21, 1999
QUESTION: Got an easy way to get bike on the centerstand? - GS750

This may sound like a foolish question for all of you experts, but to a novice like me it is a real problem. I am a small man, about 150lbs, and I have just recently purchased a GS750. I cannot seem to get the bike on the center stand without the help of a car jack. Is there a method to doing this for someone of my stature?

RIDER: Robert Rigolizzo

REPLY: Henry Dedrick
My 550 is probably easier anyway, but I think it's always easier if you wear hard-soled shoes, because you should be stepping (hard) straight down on the centerstand lever, and that usually hurts with sneakers on.  Also, yank UP on the handhold, not back.
Todd Rickett
Put the left rear foot peg in the up position, make sure the bike is in neutral, put your left hand on the handle bar and your right on the lift bar which should be under the edge of your seat on the right hand side of the bike. Then just begin to put your weight on the centerstand, you may have to actually stand on it but the bike should come right up.
Robert Del Riego
I had the same problem when I first got my 77 GS750. I've since developed the knack or whatever, but a trick I used at first was to push the front wheel onto a 3/4 or 1" piece of wood and then roll the bike back onto the centerstand. That extra inch of height made a big difference. Also, don't try to lift the bike onto the stand; as you have discovered, it's heavy. If you push down on the stand as if you were pushing the stand away from you the bike comes right up. Well, almost right up. Have fun.
Joel Horie
I know you already had some answers, but here's my 2 cents. I've got a 1977 GS 750 (USA) and I'm at 5' 9" and weigh 155lbs. Ditto the comments on hard soled shoes (better yet, boots)- less painful and you get more leverage. Put the side stand up. Stand left of the bike; left hand on left handle bar grip, right hand on the lift assist handle. Now the lift assist handle (mine is chrome) on my bike is on the LEFT side of the bike, just below the seat edge and aft of the top of the shock absorber. So, as you get ready to lift, you are standing on the left side of the bike, your left hand is on the bar grip, right foot is on the center stand foot pad, right arm is hanging at your side, hand is palm toward bike (gripping lift assist handle). All we are doing is keeping the front wheel straight with the left hand, and lifting the bike by extending your right leg. Keep your back relatively straight, your leg does the work. I would disagree with Todd about the right hand. If you are my height or less, reaching across the bike with your right hand makes it more difficult and forces you to lean over the bike.

DATE: April 23, 1999
QUESTION: Windjammer fairing - 1983 GS850GL

I bought a used Windjammer fairing. Anyone know where to get a bracket to fit the bike? I also need a shield and a few parts for the fairing. Any help appreciated.

RIDER: Bob Paccagnella

REPLY: Ed Parsons
You might find a mounting bracket at a motorcycle salvage yard along with the miscellaneous parts. To my understanding, the mounting brackets are pretty much universal. Vetter replacement windshields are still sold through parts houses like Shade Tree and Dennis Kirk. I also got this rumor at a salvage yard, in Ocala, Florida; that there is now a dealer in new Vetter parts. Unfortunatly, this person could not find the flyer in reference to this dealer. Even though Vetter is now out of business, their fairings still provide good service to the motorcyclist that use them. Good luck in your search!

DATE: April 23, 1999
QUESTION: Proper operating temp./ strange front end vibrating noise? - 1983 GS1100E

This is a great site for a great bike. Thank you ELECTREX for sponsoring it.

I recently purchased a beautiful 1983 G1100E with 40K miles. I put on about 2K miles when I noticed a weird vibrating type noise that seems to be coming from the front end at about 60-70mph. It almost sounds like a jazz trumpet in the key of E. I've tightened front end bolts but can't seem to lay my finger on it. Also, the temperature gauge did not seem to work when I bought it, but while I was stuck in traffic on a very cool Southern California night it came to life and jumped just below 200 degrees while I moved, but dropped to about 160 as I idled and freaked out. I'm running very fresh synthetic 10-40, but am not sure of the proper operating temp. in various conditions. I'm still waiting for my OEM manual to come in the mail. I plan on keeping this bike and would appreciate any input.

RIDER: Michael Yoxsimer

REPLY: Ed Parsons
That front-end noise that you are experiencing may be the speedometer cable. You could try lubing it with engine oil after disconnecting the cable from the speedo housing, or try a replacement cable. As for engine oil, I use Castrol 20W-50 with good results. Not haven ridden your particular model, I have seen other motorcycle engines have oil temps from 150 F to 200 F depending on weather conditions, length of ride, and use of throttle.

DATE: April 23, 1999
QUESTION: Rim sizes - 1983 GSX750E

I have just purchased the above motorcycle and have noted that the front wheel has a larger rim size to the rear. The rear is a 17 inch and the front 19 inch. It would be appreciated if you could confirm the correct rim sizes for this GSX model. Your assistance would be appreciated. Regards from Sunny South Africa.

RIDER: Kevin Strumpher

REPLY: Arthur Aalsma

DATE: April 23, 1999
QUESTION: Available windshields or fairings - 1983 GS1100E

I am looking for an accessory company that would have a selection of windshields or fairings that would fit my bike. Did Suzuki offer a factory windshield/fairing for this model?

RIDER: Paul C. Caple

REPLY: Zack Schultz
I did a quick search but couldn't find it. There is a company in Florida named Gustaffson, or Gustafsson plastics where I bought a replacement for my GS550. They have a web site. I really should bookmark it to avoid this work again.

DATE: March 22, 1999
QUESTION: Fairing and parts - 1980 GS550

Is there a fairing that will fit my GS and if so where could I find one? I also need other parts such as an air distributor (between the air filter and the carbs) where could I find these items?

RIDER: Mark Ogier

REPLY: Ed Parsons
There is Rifle Fairings, located in the USA, which have fairings which mount to the handlebars of most any motorcycle with 7/8" round tubing bars. For your air cleaner to carb connections, it sounds like you need 4 carb boots which glue into the air box and use band clamps to secure the boots to the carb intakes. There should be 2 left boots and 2 right boots if it is like my GS850G. The boots should be available at any Suzuki dealer and should be bought new because the old ones tend to shrink, crack, and just not fit right. The band clamps, for the carb intakes, can be used and off of another bike as long as they fit and operate correctly.

DATE: February 28, 1999
QUESTION: An argument for keeping things stock

I would like to take this time to tell everyone that the stock parts from Suzuki are not as expensive as everyone makes out! A pair of new coils straight from Suzuki (genuine) parts cost me all of $55.00 a piece. All you need to do is to order from a warehouse type of place and you can find great deals on real Suzuki parts. Personally I don't want my bike littered with a bunch of parts from various sources. So in closing I would just like to say "keep it stock".

RIDER: Adrian Bowden

REPLY: Frank Perreault
I'm sorry, but I don't agree with your argument.  For that same amount of money you could get aftermarket Dyna coils which will put out a higher voltage resulting in increased horsepower and fuel economy.  This means that that you are getting more bang for the buck.  Another added benefit; stock coils mold the sparkplug wires into the coils.  This means that if a sparkplug wire goes bad, you must replace the whole ignition coil.  Let's see, a $5 wire vs. a $55 coil...  Not a smart design unless you sell Suzuki coils for a living.

Another example - the regulator/rectifier.  Yes, you can get a stock Suzuki reg./rec. for about the same money as the Electrex unit.  The problem?  The stock unit has a flawed design that when it blows up it usually takes out the stator and battery along with it.  It's a great way to throw away $400+ and just think, you could do it multiple times if you stick with the stock pieces.  If you don't believe me look at the Q&A-Electrical section to see what a majority of the electrical problems are with the GS's - the regulator/rectifier. 

So while your argument may hold water if you plan on putting your bike in a museum, it doesn't necessarily make sense if you want to ride your bike and do it economically.

DATE: February 15, 1999
QUESTION: Model info needed - 1982 GS750T

I picked up an 82 GS750T, at least that's what the owner's manual says. I've been looking on your website and I can't find reference to a plain GS750T. I was told it has the 4V/Cyl motor. Is this correct? I will be looking for sideplates for this model but why bother looking if it's not a valid model. I'm from Canada. Could it have been a Canadian model? Thanks

RIDER: Kieran Savage

REPLY: John G. Bloemer
Kieran, I have a 1982 GS750t that I'm parting out. The bike looked great and was only showing 4,300 miles on it. But after I got it running, I found out it had a bad lower connecting rod bearing :-( . I noticed that the GS Resources page did not mention this model too. My understanding is that this model is somewhat rare.

[Ed: That's why you don't see it mentioned.  I've never heard of it and no one has ever asked about one, so it must be rare.]

If on the right side lower engine cover it says "TSCC" (Twin Swirl Combustion Chamber) your bike is a DOHC four valve per cylinder engine. These engines also do not have the round decorative chrome covers on the ends of the camshafts. The cam covers are more square. The valves tappets also do not require the removable shims to make the adjustments. Finally, to fit between all the valves, the sparkplugs are an odd (smaller) size too. Check the steering stem for model information. There should be a metal tag there with tire pressure, GVWR, VIN, date of manufacture, and model number information. Sorry, I already sole the sideplates off my GS750t, but I have other parts still available.

DATE: February 9, 1999
QUESTION: Fix or trade?  - 1978 GS550

I stumbled onto your GS webpage today and i stand in awe of the knowledge held by you motorheads. Allow me to once again put it to the test.

I inherited my 1978 GS 550 from my dad nearly three years ago. As it is my first bike and a family legacy, I love it and shudder at the thought of getting rid of it. However, I am afraid it seems to be simply old and tired, with minor damages. Though I confess I don't know anything about the bike mechanically, I have taken at least reasonable care of it and it has served me well. Unfortunately it lacks power in a serious way.

The engine has recently started to bog down and the top speed is humble at best (75-80 mph). Recently I have been shopping for a new bike--until I read some of the Q and A's on your page. My guestion is this: Would it be in my best interests to sink $3500-$5000 into a more recent model year bike, or try to spice up my steed? If spicing is your advice, what suggestions do you have for doing so? What about prices, etc?

RIDER: Anthony Barrett

REPLY: Zack Schultz
This was an older post, but my .02 worth is if you're willing to spend $3k on this, it can be a missile! Seriously, a pipe, jet kit (properly done) and - if you get real serious - a bore job will truly transform your bike from a performance aspect. It sounds as if it's getting ready for a rebuild (bogging, reduced top end speed) so have a compression check done before making any decision. You will spend 3 grand unless you can do the work yourself. Consider having a local trade school do the work. They sometimes will do it for parts costs if you're willing to wait awhile.
Henry Dedrick
This is probably not average, but I have 64,000 miles on my 1980 '550. It's elderly, and needs nursing, but it's still running. It's just a matter of how much effort you want to dump into it. Personally, I would definitely draw the line BEFORE you go into the bottom end of these bikes. They have roller-bearing, multi-piece crankshafts, and I think that means they're expensive to replace main bearing or con-rod bearing on. I'm sure some people out here know more about this than I , and may disagree, however.

You might consider picking up another low-mileage bike and using your current bike for parts.

DATE: February 9, 1999
QUESTION: Performance numbers - 1980 GS850G

I own a 1980 GS 850G which I just purchased yesterday. I haven't had a bike in 12 years and my Suzuki GS 450T is too far in memory to remember rpm's in gears at speed. My 850 turns about 4500 RPM in 5th gear doing about 65 MPH. Is this a fair assessment of nominal performance? I sense no performance lags in riding the bike, but I would like to find a couple of benchmarks to base performance on. If anyone can help I would appreciate it.

RIDER: Derek Tabor

REPLY:  Malcolm Evans
Yep, sounds abut right - my '81 GT pulls about the same, top end is around 130mph at 1000 rpm into the redline.....

DATE: January 26, 1999
QUESTION: Sources or info on aftermarket KG bags - 1982 GS850G

I've recently acquired a 1982 GS850G. It is my first bike, but already I'm smitten. When the bike was purchased, it had a set of hardbags on it with the emblem KG. One set of the light lenses was broken, so the dealer removed the bags and put standard lights on, but gave me the bags. I'd really like to put back these bags, but can't find who makes them, or where to get the lenses, or replacement bags. Were these standard Suzuki issue? or are they aftermarket? Any suggestions for sources?

RIDER: Peter Oomen

REPLY: Bill Patten
KG bags were aftermarket bags made in Woonsocket, Rhode island. I had never heard of them until I picked up a very used GS1100GL which I bought just to get the bags and topbox. A call to Woonsocket information had no listing so I presume they're out of business. auto parts stores usually carry some sort of lense repair kits. Sorry I couldn't offer more help.
Frank Perreault
From what I've been able to find out, KG went bankrupt several years ago.

DATE: January 26, 1999
QUESTION: Info needed on a new engine - GS550E

I picked up a new engine with electronics (in the crate) for a GS550E, ser no. N702119853. I bought it at an estate auction. I do not know the year or full model name of this bike. For me to make a new bike out of this I need this info to manuals, micro fiche, parts, etc.

RIDER: Larry Abbott

REPLY:  Bill Chandler
Wow, sounds like a pretty good deal. While I can't "specifically" tell you what year your engine was made I can tell you what year's Suzuki made a 550. I have a "Price Guide" that covers bikes back to 1981 (if the 550 was made before that, I can't confirm). In 81, Suzuki had a GS550L and GS550T In 82, they dropped the T and added the GS550M. In 83, they dropped the M and added the GS550E and GS550ES to the L. In 84, they dropped the L and E models and made only the ES., In 85, they brought back the L and E models and continued with the ES. In 86 (the lst year the 550 was produced), they dropped the E model and continued with the L and ES. In 89 they introduced the GS500E and have been making this ever since.

As to the differences each year and model had on the engines, I don't know. I know in 83 that the 1100 engines were painted BLACK. I believe the GS550ES (of that year) also had a black engine. If your engine is silver, it may be of an earlier vintage (82 or older).

Sorry, I wish I had more info for you. I'll copy the other site editors on this message If they have more info, they'll let you know.

DATE: January 26, 1999
QUESTION: Is this really a G model - 1980 GS1000G

Following various discussions I'm puzzled by exactly what sort of GS I've got here. Enclosed is a jpg pic of the bike. All I know of its history is that it was imported to the UK in 1995 from Kay Enterprises of Littleton, Colorado. It's badged as GS1000G but is more like a cruiser shaft drive. Looks non-standard. The chassis no. is GST0009707021 and the engine no. is 105771. Year is supposedly 1980. Can anyone help?

RIDER: Patrick Middleton-Smith

REPLY: Terry Blair
Patrick, your bike looks to be what would be called a GS1000GL by the model designations we had here in the US. I have a 1980 GS1000G. The GL model like yours was the cruiser model. It had a smaller gas tank and the stepped seat and shorter megaphone shaped pipes--one on each side.. It did have the shaft drive like my GS1000G model. Of course I can see by the picture that your pipes are non original as the bike now has a 4-1 header system. Also, your handlebars are non-original as the GL models had cruiser style pull-back bars. My bike is the one with the long flat seat and large 5.8 US gallon gas tank and bars similar to the ones on your bike now. I hope this info was helpful. Your bike looks to be in excellent condition. How many miles does it have on it?
Patrick Middleton-Smith
Thanks for the attached information - it's very useful and confirms my suspicions that there should be an 'L' after the 'G' on my badges ! The previous owner spent hours regularly cleaning and polishing the bike (right down to a toothbrush on the engine and bare metal) and I was fortunate to buy it in this condition. The previous owner is a good friend so I have to keep up his good work ! I don't think it has ever been used as a work-horse, and it's strictly a (great) pleasure for me. The import papers show US mileage from '80 to '95 of 25k, and it still only has 28k on the clock. Thanks again for your reply.

DATE: January 3, 1999
QUESTION: GVWR question - GS650GLZ

On the manufacturers plate on the front stem of my GS650GLZ it lists the dry weights as:

GVWR 1038lbs
GAWR-F 363lbs
GAWR-R 675lbs

Clymer's Manual lists the dry weight as 467 lbs. and most of the references in GS Resources to bike weights would seem to support the Clymer weight. Any idea what the weight on the plate on the bike refers to?

As a new/old rider having just acquired the GS650, I find the GS Resources web site quite fascinating and extremely helpful. Keep it up your reward is surely in Biker Heaven; and I don't mean Hog Heaven!

RIDER: Colin Ford

REPLY: Colin Ford
I think I might be able to answer my own question. I am told by a bus driver neighbor, that GVWR means Gross Vehicle Weight Rated. This refers to the amount of weight a vehicle is rated to carry; not what it moves the weigh scale pointer. In other words my GS650GLZ can carry 1038 pounds loaded in such a way that there is 363 lbs. on the front wheel and 675lbs on the rear wheel. GAWR-F means Gross Axle Weight Rated-Front, etc.

Hope this makes sense, its seems a good explanation to me as different countries have different ways to regulating such things. This is how it is done here in Canada.

DATE: December 5, 1998
QUESTION: Model info wanted - 1980 GS750

I have a 750 GS with no more letters on plastic. The year is 1980, which is under question mark. I have a classic, non electronic ignition. Can you help me to define the year of manufacturing and the model? If it is helpful, I can send you a photo.

RIDER: Momir Jeremic

REPLY: Tim Noell
You've probably heard from several others by now, but here goes:

I don't know about other markets, but in the USA, your bike was last sold as a 1979 model. In 1980 Suzuki updated to sixteen valves and electronic ignition. Without the Dyno and Point cover emblems visible it makes it harder to pin the year down.

Here are some tips that apply to USA models:

1978: First year for Mag wheels and dual front discs. Black and silver Dyno and point plate covers.

1979: Went to gold and black Dyno and Point plate covers. If I remember right, in 1979 they changed the appearance of the lower triple clamp cover. The one on your bike looks like a '78.

In any case, you have a great looking example of Suzuki's finest!

DATE: December 5, 1998
QUESTION: Manual questions - 1983 GS1100E

I just bought an 83 GS110E and would like to get a repair manual for it. Suzuki publishes one, but it's expensive. Clymer publishes one for less but it's for model years 80 and 81 only. Is the 83 model so appreciably different from the 80-81 models that I really should spend the extra cash on the Suzuki manual. Do you know of sources for used manuals? As far as I can tell from the GS History on this site, the (X) in GS(X) designates 16 valve and was used in Europe only. Is that the right interpretation?

RIDER: Hal Lubash

REPLY: Frank Perreault
If it were me I would get the correct manual.  Torque's for certain things will be different, along with the order of assembly.  I myself would take the course of being cautious and get the right manual for the bike.  If you priced replacement parts you'll quickly see why the proper manual is the right thing to do.  For other sources of manuals see our Links page.

As for the GSX designation, I'll leave that question for someone else to answer.
Bill Patten
I just bought an 82 E model and had the same concerns about the Clymer manual. I got a Haynes manual from Dennis Kirk, they advertise in most mags, and its an excellent book with much more information than Clymer and cheaper to boot.

DATE: December 5, 1998
QUESTION: Lower bars? - 1979 GS850GN

I have a `79 GS850GN, which I recently removed the old Vetter fairing from and replaced with a cool black matte headlight assembly, and directionals. This was prompted by my recent acquisition of a `82 GS1100GK. I wanted to have a naked front 850 along with my fully faired 1100. It occurred to me upon seeing the 850 sans fairing, that a pseudo cafe look might be nice for appearance and for use/performance. Has anyone put on lowered bars on an 850G? Any ideas or tips about how to investigate this possibility? All help appreciated.

RIDER: John Gurvitch

REPLY:  Todd Rickett
I have a 80 750, had those crazy big tourer bars when I first got it. put a set of superbike bars on and love them. been like that for 7 years now. You should be able to get a set of bars at a bike shop for about $20-$30.

DATE: December 5, 1998
QUESTION: Buying information needed - 1979 GS550

I'm a French reader of your articles... All was great!!! I would like to buy an 550 GS 79'.What do you think of and what are the things I have to verify to?

RIDER Gérard Levaufre

REPLY: Henry Dedrick
Gerard, you're a lucky guy, not being subject to U.S. emissions laws (which do affect our '78 and '79 models, and caused a change in the carbs for our 1980-on models) but also because you'll probably get dual front disks on these 550's, which we don't get here.

I'm not too familiar with the other year-to-year changes for the non-US bikes. On my 1980 GS550E, they giveth and they taketh away. they dropped the kick starter, and switched from slide carbs to CV carbs, neither of which I like. But on the up side, they gave us electronic ignition (no more points, great!) and cast aluminum wheels (though not listed for tubeless tires...).

The only suggestion I have right now is to quiz the owner on how to check the oil. If he doesn't know there's a little window on the right side of the crankcase. Don't buy the bike.. (this actually happened to me, but the bike survived OK despite him) Good Luck.

DATE: November 1, 1998
QUESTION: Unusual request - Insurance problems

The problem I'm having is this: About a month ago I purchased a '83 GS 1100 GK, on Sept 3 a woman in a '97 Towne Car pulled out in front of me and I t-boned her. The insurance company has made me an offer of $1500 and I keep the bike, damages are estimated at $3850. I know I couldn't buy another for what they offer, this was a 98% mint condition bike. what I need is owners to let me know what they would sell theirs for if they were for sale so I can show the ins. people that this is not a fair offer. Any help would be appreciated, I can be reached at or at

RIDER: Andy Smith

REPLY:  Malcolm Evans
In the UK a tidy low mileage US Import GS 1100 G sells for around £2000 UK sterling (around $3400)

DATE: November 1, 1998
QUESTION: Handlebar recommendations - 1982 GS1100GL

I have an '82 GS1100GL in mint condition. All stock except the handlebars. The previous owner installed black low-rise bars which are good for day rides in the twisties. But now I have nice luggage and backrest ready to install so that my son will ride with me and take longer trips. I'm thinking that more upright bars would be better for 2-up riding, not to mention that peg placement on this bike is a little more forward. I've seen pictures of the stock bars and feel these are a little to the other extreme. However, no bike shops I have found stock any bars where I can check their shape to see if they would look or work right. Does anyone have any recommendations on any specific bars that have been found to work or where to go to find them?

RIDER: Steve Haupt

REPLY: Joe Amidon
I've liked K&N's handlebars. They make one specifically for the GS series. You might want to compare the ones they make for other bikes for variations. They are common enough so you can find them in some bike stores, you just have to look around. The Dennis Kirk catalog gives a good selection and shows you how to measure and compare different bars as well.

DATE: November 1, 1998
QUESTION: Restricted access - 1983 GS1100ED

I have a 1983 GS1100ED that I'd like to put a 4 into 1 on , but I'm having a hard time finding one in black that doesn't either require removing the centerstand or cause "restricted access to oil drain & filter". I'm leaning towards a Vance & Hines Supersport, but its listed as having restricted access. I'd appreciate hearing from anyone who knows firsthand exactly what this means, or knows of a good system before I lay out the cash.

RIDER: John Speltz

REPLY: Frank Perreault
Restricted access means just what it says - will have to remove the exhaust in order to remove the oil drain plug and or remove the oil filter cover.  Check out the Fuel/Exhaust section for articles about other exhaust systems.

DATE: November 1, 1998
QUESTION: Rear wheel swap. What spacers are needed? - 1982 GS1000S Katana

Have a 1986 GSX-R rear wheel to install and would like to know if anyone has any input as to spacers, axle, etc. Thank-you.

RIDER: Jane Ferko

REPLY:  Billy Ricks
I switched to '88-'90 GSXR wheels on my GS700E. You'll need to install GS bearings in the cush drive, and hub because of the larger GSXR axle. I used the rotor, caliper, caliper hanger, and sprocket from the same model GSXR as the wheels to simplify things. You'll just have to experiment with spacers. I used large washers to get the wheel centered.

DATE: November 1, 1998
QUESTION: Allen screw conversion - 1983 GS1100

I would like to change all my carb, bowls, covers and valve cover screws to Allen head screws on my 1983 Suzuki GS1100E. The carbs are stock. Can you tell me the sizes and or if someone may sell complete motor sets?

RIDER: Eric Winston

REPLY: Joe Amidon
J.C. Whitney sells an Allen head bolt kit for the GS's for only about $12.50. It doesn't have all the carb screws though.
Frank Perreault
J.C. Whitney is on the web at
Zack Schultz
I always change those silly Phillips heads with Allen's the first time I need to touch the carbs. Pull the carbs, take out one of each screw and head to the friendly hardware store. My local one even has stainless metrics. Match up the screws and you're on your way.
RIDER: Bob Frisbie
I've replaced some of the carb screw with Allen screws and now I can pull the caps off to change the needle setting or the bowls without pulling the carbs. I just went to the hardware store and got some stainless steel ones that matched up. A lot of them have metric now.

DATE: November 1, 1998
QUESTION: ID info needed - GS1150

I would like to know how would I identify a Suzuki 1150 any year engine marking from a 1100 or any other Suzuki engines please.

RIDER: Leroy Holloway

REPLY:  Billy Ricks
If you look at the base of the cylinders on the left side of the motor you will normally find the cylinder capacity cast into the cylinder.
  Malcolm Evans
The GS 1150 / GSX 1100 EFE engine has a flat rocker box a la GSX 750 ES / EZ et al, with TSCC stamped in it, GS 8 valvers have 2 round shiny cam and covers each side, (usually with oil leaking out the bottom of them) GS(X) 16 valvers that are not 1150 have the same only rectangular ally cam caps.

Also look for cc stamp as 1150's are the only ones at 1135cc, other GSXR 1100 16 valvers are 1057cc. GSXR's have a much smaller fins as they are oil cooled.

Oops forgot US / UK differences...for all those engines read GS = 8 valvers, GSX = 16 valvers. In the US they are all GS I think.......

DATE: October 4, 1998
QUESTION: Power info for 1982 GS1100GL

I own a 1982 GS1100GL and am looking for a replacement for it. I've test ridden several bikes none of which seem to have the same get-up-and-go of my current bike. Does anyone know what the claimed horsepower and torque values were for my bike? Any responses would be appreciated.

RIDER: Greg Schultz

REPLY: Ad Smeulders
I have a Suzuki GS1100 GLD from 1982 which came from Canada. As  far a I know my machine has 100 horsepower. But it has been tuned down from around 120 horsepower for the Canadian market. Don't know about the torque however. I once did 200 kilometers an hour which is definitely the top speed for this machine.

DATE: September 26, 1998
QUESTION: Trying to sell and can't - 1981 GS750

I have a 1981 GS750 (I think that it is an L model) First of all are these bikes a dime a dozen?? My bike only has 15,000 miles on it and has never been wrecked. It is in excellent shape and runs like a champ. I have advertised it for $400.00 for over a year and have not received even one response. Am I asking to much??? I see older bikes in your column with more miles from $500.00 to $2000.00. I am thinking that I just might keep it.

Second, how do I tell if it is an "L" model?? It has a square headlight. and looks real similar to the 82 750EZ. It also has emblems real similar to the GS Resources home page emblem.

RIDER: Jeffery C. Higgins

REPLY: Joe Amidon
You've got a GS750E. The E, which has a wider, higher seat, has the painted, square headlight and black plastic turn signals. The L has a chrome headlight and fenders, and a lower, narrower seat. Keep it. You'll have a lot of fun.

DATE: September 26, 1998
QUESTION: Availability of parts and accessories - 1982 GS1100L

I am considering a purchase of a 1982 GS1100L w/23K miles on it. It appears to be fairly well maintained, as it is clean and runs well. Asking price is $1100.00 and I think it is well worth it. My questions are: Is there an abundant supply of parts, considering that the bike is approx. 16yrs old, and what about accessories, i.e. sissy bar, back rest, fairings, etc.

My main concern is the parts supply as it has been several years since I have owned a street bike. Last was a Honda 750 about 18 yrs. ago, so this is somewhat of a new territory. Any info is appreciated.

RIDER: David Somers

REPLY: Zack Schultz
There are thousands of GS bikes around. Keep in touch with the GS Resources to help keep things going. As far as parts, SGP (Suzuki Genuine Parts) are still readily available. Body parts are no longer stocked in color, so you'll need to get to know your local paint shop. Engine and all other parts are no problem, but becoming pricier. Aftermarket stuff has pretty well dried up, but some manufacturers will dig up old plans and do a 'one off'.

DATE: September 26, 1998
QUESTION: More model info needed - 1981 GS1x00

I recently bought what I thought was a '81 GS1100L. The bike is burgundy and the side panels are marked GS1100L and they look to be original and to the best of my knowledge they are the original covers. However, the serial number on the engine begins with GS100.... and the markings on the engine say 997cm. This bike looks like a GS1100 but the markings on the engine would seem to indicate otherwise. Your thoughts would be appreciated.

RIDER: John Payne

REPLY: Zack Schultz
Go with the engine castings.

DATE: September 26, 1998
QUESTION: Back rest info needed - 1982 GS750E

I own and ride(almost daily) a 1982 GS750E. My fiancé' has recently started riding along and has expressed the desire to add a small back rest to the motorcycle...we can't find one...anywhere. Not even Corbin appears to have a seat and back rest combo available. Any ideas?

Also, I understand there was a problem finding server hosting a while back. If you guys need resources in the future, please contact me, maybe I can help.

RIDER: John McDade

REPLY: Zack Schultz
Call Corbin direct. They may not list a seat for your bike, but (like mine) they will build you one out of your original seat pan. Send them your seat (wait until riding season is over), or another if you want to be able to go back to stock for some reason.

DATE: September 26, 1998
QUESTION: General questions - 1982 GS850G

I traded for a gs850g built 10/81. First, is this a 81 or 82? I didn't get a title with this bike, its been sitting about 12 years nobody knows where the title is or who had it last! It was considered junk but it only has 5k on it. After cleaning and polishing for weeks it looks good,. has the original tires on it, rotten of course. The seat is bad, the pan is rusted out in a couple of places, but the foam is good.

Does anyone know what the largest size tires can be mounted, without any problems? Also what speed are these bikes capable of cruising for long periods without pushing them real hard? Enough questions for now.

RIDER: Mike Moody

REPLY: Michael Saxon
A bike built in 10/81 is probably an '82. Look at the ID plate again and see if it says GS850GX or GS850GZ. The GX is an '81, the GZ is an '82.

Not sure why you're looking for the largest tires you can mount, although you can certainly increase the size over stock without adversely affecting handling. I currently have a 100/90-19 front tire, and an MT90-17 rear (approximately equivalent to 130/90-17). I certainly wouldn't go any larger in the rear, but I could probably squeeze a 110/90 on the front if I wanted to.

A properly tuned GS is capable of cruising very comfortably for long distances at 80 mph or more. I say "properly tuned" because engine vibration can get annoying above 75 mph if the carbs are not carefully balanced. A windscreen is absolutely necessary for extended riding above 55 mph - otherwise you become a big sail, creating unnecessary strain on your wrists and shoulders as well as slowing the bike considerably.

The tach needle thing might be cable related (It's a cheap fix if it works), but more likely is due to a worn tach. My speedometer exhibits similar behavior if I ride over 80 mph for more than an hour. Last year, I made a mad dash from Chicago to Cincinnati, and by the time I got there, the speedo was bouncing around like crazy.  Good Luck!

DATE: September 26, 1998
QUESTION: Where to get parts? - 1981 GS450

I've been having a hard time finding parts places with rear shocks for my 81 GS450... any recommendations? Thanks!

RIDER: Glenn Sanders

REPLY: Frank Perreault
First, I should say that if your search is being made difficult because you're looking for cheap prices, good luck.  Because the prices of new bikes has gotten so high, this had caused the prices of used bikes and their parts to go up correspondingly.   In some cases the prices are pretty outrageous.  That said, check out our Links page and the back of motorcycle magazines for listings of parts sellers and scrap yards.

DATE: September 26, 1998
QUESTION: Clutch cable change how-to - GS750ES

My son has a GS750ES with a broken clutch cable and neither of us have any idea how to replace it with the new one he bought. It looks like there is an adjustment nut on a threaded sleeve which goes into the gearbox. We have tried to unscrew the sleeve, but it has reached a point where further unscrewing just seems to bring forth a 'crack" type noise as if something inside is slipping and nothing else. The cable has a metal bulbous end which I suppose must attach to something inside the gearbox, but of course we cannot get to it. Can you help or do you know of a maintenance book which would address this problem? We have been unable to find any books on the bike at our local bookstores or dealer (he says the bike is obsolete and is not supported).

RIDER: Alan Coombes

REPLY:  Billy Ricks
Alan, did you ever get your sons bike fixed? The bike is definitely not obsolete, I have one myself. I have a genuine Suzuki service manual if you should ever need copies of pages for maintenance.

DATE: August 24, 1998
QUESTION: Serial numbers - GS1100

I am in the Air Force stationed in Okinawa, Japan. I found a Suzuki GS1100 that was brought here by a Marine 3 years ago. Problem is, the Japanese title says the year of the bike is 95 because that was the year the bike was brought here and the title was made. Could you tell me where on the Internet that I can go to run the serial numbers and find out the year of the bike?

Also, I was wondering if I should bring the bike back to the states? After I ride the bike I might decide to keep it. However, I was told that if I want to, I could sell it here for $3,000.00 I was wondering if I might be able to sell it in the states for more than that if it is in good condition. Thanks for your help.

RIDER: Paul Knab

REPLY: Frank Perreault
There is no where on the web that I know of that you can use to research serial numbers.  Suzuki also makes it quite hard to do anything with them anyways since there appears to be no rhyme or reason to thir numbering system.

As for bringing it back home for a profit, I doubt that you would see one especially if you have to pay trans-Pacific shipping.  The going price for an 1981 GS1100 is around $1800.  So it'll all depend on the year and I doubt whether you'll be able to find that out.

DATE: August 24, 1998
QUESTION: General questions - 1982 GS650L

I think I know the answer to this question from looking at the site, but I am going to ask you to make sure. This past December I purchased a 82 GS650L which has a shaft drive.

First question: is this really a GS650GL, my Clymer manual does not even recognize that a GS650L exists. To further confuse me, one of the rider profiles on this site talks about his chain drive GS650L.

Second question: I paid $950 for my bike with a helmet thrown in. The bike had 21,000 miles. Was this a good deal?

I was so happy that this site exists! Thanks alot! I'll try and send you a picture of the bike for pic-of-the-month maybe. Last question, have you ever heard of anyone riding a GS650 across the country?

RIDER: Chris Bower

REPLY: Frank Perreault
The 'G' indicates a shaft drive, the 'L' indicates the cruiser style bike.   The price you paid sounds OK to me depending on the condition of the bike.   And no, I've never heard of a 650 going cross-country but I have heard of smaller bikes doing it.  It's all a matter of comfort and speed.

DATE: August 24, 1998
QUESTION: Replacement emblem info needed - 1980 GS850GL

I am trying to find any company that makes replacement emblems for my '80 GS850GL. The tank and side cover emblems  are "ratty" looking and I will be painting the tank this winter and would like a fresh look.

RIDER: Kevin Blackstone

REPLY: Peter Huppertz
I'm afraid that you're in for a bit of bad news. If Suzuki USA can't help you anymore, it's either scrap yard or we'll have to resort to special paint jobs. I know of nobody who sells these.

I'll forward your pic to the rest of the gang, just in case they may know more than I do (which wouldn't be surprising since I live in Europe), and maybe Bill could post it on the Wanted page.

DATE: August 24, 1998
QUESTION: Lots o' questions - 1982 GS1100L

1. It bottoms out in the rear with two people riding. After adjusting the springs to the tightest settings, what else might it need? New shocks? Is there an adjustment on the shocks? (What's the little thumb wheel gizmo at the top of the shocks?)

2. Anyone have a method for fitting a Vetter fairing to this bike, without the factory original bracket?

3. Anyone have a reliable source for things like an owner's manual (I'm just about to go over to the Suzuki home page and ask them, but after 16 years, I kinda doubt they'll have it.) How about a tool kit?

4. Does anyone have any info about the original model? For instance, what was the "L" supposed to be, in contrast to the standard 'G' or
others? How was it received?

I'll post pictures as soon as I get some.  Thanks to all for the great web pages here.

RIDER: Steve Schiavo

REPLY:  Bill Chandler
Well, I'm not an expert on the L models, but it's my understanding that G stands for Shaft drive. Does your bike have a shat or chain? The L stand for "cruiser" or "touring" model. The seat was cut for more "layed back" riding and the handle bars are higher. Is this what you bike looks like?

There may be other subtle differences, but these are the major ones.  My opinion...
Joe Amidon
1. You might try replacing the shocks and springs. Progressive makes some nice units, that are a big improvement and you can get them in heavy duty, which makes for better riding with a passenger. You might want to replace the fork springs at the same time. Just replacing the fork springs on my 81 GS850 greatly improved the handling.

2. ??

3. I've found the Clymer manuals quite helpful and much cheaper than the Suzuki, although I understand you can get those, too.

4. The "L" identifies the cruiser styled model, with lower seat height; the "G" refers to shaft drive. A "GL" is both.

DATE: July 20, 1998
QUESTION: What is it?

Yesterday I went out and bought my first bike ever. The emblem on the side of the bike says GS1100L (it's an '82) and I've not been able to find any info on it on the net. I was wondering if this is the same as a GS1100GL.

RIDER: Erik Stenerud

REPLY: Frank Perreault
If your bike is a shaft drive then yes, I believe it's a GS1100GL.
Rick Corgiat
Congratulations on your purchase!!! I own the same year and model bike, your gonna love it! In order for the bike to be a GL it does have to have shaft drive. I was able to find a service manual at Milwaukee Cycle Salvage (they have a web site). Please e-mail me so we can compare notes on how restoration stuff is going.

DATE: July 20, 1998
QUESTION: Seat swap opinion wanted - GS1100G

I really appreciate the "GS" web site!

I'm riding an '82 GS650G now, and have an opportunity to trade it for an '82 GS1100G with a few hundred thrown in. The 1100 is absolutely perfect, so far as I can tell, with nearly 30,000 mi..  I'd really prefer a big fat cruiser seat like Corbin makes for models "all around" this one, but not for this one. Anyone of your subscribers have some advice about a good seat conversion for this bike? Thanks again for the site.

RIDER: Steve Schiavo

REPLY: Dutch Flodstrom
IMHO, do not change the origianl GS1100G seat. You won't find one that is more comfortable. Many road tests by a variety of Motorcycle magazines, stated for years that the GS1000G / GS1100G seat was the best seat for a human butt. Period. Even the venerable Honda GW, didn't match up when it came to spending hours in the saddle. Having ridden, myself, more than a 1,000 different motorcycles, I have to concur with the magazine's editors. The big GS G series seat is the best!

Have a great (and comfortable) ride!
 Peter Huppertz
And then again, I beg to differ. For someone with enough flesh to sit on, the original GS1000/1100 seat is nothing short of perfect. However, for the somewhat bony fellows among us, the padding could be a tad harder. I prefer the somewhat tougher seat of the '82 Eleven to the G seat.

The brilliance of the G seat is that it consists of two layers of foam... a soft one on top and a somewhat tougher one beneath.

The trick you (Steve) might want to pull off is to cut the desired form out of a slightly tougher layer of foam and then have a saddle maker cover the new setup. Read the article "Have a different seat" under the Bolt-on's and accessories section on the web site to get the idea.
 Dan Bard
I once got a nice touring style seat to fit the pan of my stock GS850... the 850 is just about the base model for your 1100G... I got the seat kit from JC Whitney of all places. It worked quite well, and I understand they have several styles to choose from.

The one I had on the 850 was nice, but this one from JC Whitney was quite the deal. Made it all the way round trip from the east coast to Colorado via both the northern and southern routes.

The stock seat may be cozy to some, but to me it was a bit too firm after 3 hours, and the way the sides dug into my thighs was hard to take after a while. Owners preference I'm afraid.
  Bill Chandler
So you guys didn't think I'd just sit back and "read" without putting my 2 cents in, now did you? ;-)

Steve, Contact Sargent Cycle Upholstery (1-800-749-7328 Jacksonville, FL) You send them your current seat. They use your old pan and will repad and recover in any shape you want. I had my seat redone. They did an EXCELLENT job. Highly recommended!! (mention the GS Resources sent you, we can always use a good plug) :-)

DATE: July 13, 1998
QUESTION: Specific info wanted - GS400

I found a lot of good information on your site, but I'm still looking for specific information on the GS400. For example, years it was produced, technical data (horsepower, top speed and stuff), pictures, etc. All the nitty gritty, I guess. Any pointers?

RIDER: John Bradley

REPLY: Christopher Hendrie
There's a web page with some basic technical information on the GSX400E (Euro equivalent of GS400E) at I imagine that most of the information also applies to other GS400 models (I own a 1981 GS400T and most of the specs seem to correspond).

DATE: July 13, 1998
QUESTION: Fairing suppliers needed for a 1983 GS1100E

Does anyone know who makes a small Cafe style faring I can buy for my GS1100E?

RIDER: Brian Underwood

REPLY:  Bill Chandler
I have an 82 GS1100E (same headlight 8"). The only fairing's I could find that would fit are RIFLE (Superbike or Sport) and AirTech (Wes Cooley Replica) I have the AirTech (I think) on my bike (color matched, see pic). I purchased it at a swap meet for $50. The painting cost another 200. The mirrors were $35 more.

AirTech does not sell the windscreen with the fairing. Windscreens can be purchased at Gustafsson's Windscreens. (St. Augustine FL 904-824-2119) You also need to ask AirTech if the headlight hole is 8". The original windscreen was designed for the 79 GS1000S. This bike had a 7" headlamp. There may be other MFG's that sell small cafe Fairing's, but I am not aware of any that will fit the 8" lamp. If you find one, please let me know for future inquiries.

DATE: July 13, 1998
QUESTION: Information wanted - 1980 GS1100L

I am having difficulty finding information on my GS1100L model bike. It was made in 1980. I have been told Suzuki made very few of this model because the engine was to powerful for the frame. I was wondering if you had any information on this particular model. Thank you for you time.

RIDER: Garrett Wallard

REPLY: Scott Horner
I have a 1100 L carcass or two in my bone yard that I have pillaged the motors from, and I see them from time to time on the road. The L model came in 14 pounds lighter than the E of the same year, the savings would be attributed to lack of bodywork, smaller tank etc. The frame should of been fine for the 80 some-odd ponies it was putting out. From what I understood, the E blew it away in sales, so they put their effort into that program. I have some info on the bike, email me with any questions, I'll see what I can do, Good Luck!

DATE: July 13, 1998
QUESTION: Bike weight (wet or dry) - 1977 GS550

I am wondering what the weight of the bike is. Either with or w/o a tank of gas or both.

RIDER: Trace Fowler

REPLY: Scott Horner
The spec I found listed the weight dry as approx. 430 pounds. Good Luck!

DATE: June 27, 1998
QUESTION: Where's my bike?  - 1981 GS750EX

Hello, my name is Jim and I'm glad to find your web site.  :)

Umm.... 1981 GS750 EX, not on your site? Why? Is it no good? Don't like them, or do I have the wrong beast?

I owned one in the military in Fort Sill, OK- rode it to upstate NY and sold it in 1986. A few friend's want to learn to ride, so dust off the leathers and lets find a bike! Driving down the road for work the other day and what do I find for sale? Yup! It has 11,000 miles, seems to be in great shape, but I was wondering what it is worth. Hence, your web site :)

Now that my printer has stopped smoking, (thank-you) time to drop you a note ! Love the site!! Where is the 81 GS 750 EX? Do you know where I might find more info on this beast? yadda yadda, etc., etc. In any case, thanks for your time, Liked the note about comparing them to the muscle cars of the 60's (helped rebuild a 66 GTO ) and I hope I'm not falling back in love........ could be too late   :)

RIDER: Jim Swem

REPLY: Frank Perreault
I promise that there is no government conspiracy reminiscent of the X-Files!

I'm glad to hear you like the site. We aim to please. In regards to why we don't have anything particular to a specific year and model, it isn't that we are trying to hide anything. We write about what we own or what we've worked on. Since every CC size typically has 4 to 5 variants the odds of us covering every version are pretty remote.  A specific model doesn't change dramatically from year to year, so you should be able to read something on, say, a 1983 GS750 and find it pretty relevant.  


DATE: June 27, 1998
QUESTION: Info needed for a 1983 GS750E

Hi, my name is Joe and I'm currently living in Caracas, Venezuela. I have a couple of questions concerning my bike which is a 1983 GS750E imported from Canada.  I'm looking for a shop manual for the bike which I have not been able to find from the manufacturer though I've heard of a Clymer manual. My question is with so many different GS750 model does this manual cover my bike specifically, and If so were can I get it from? Second how can a check the condition of the full floater suspension and what are the 2 knobs that are there for? one last if I may. The bike is a bit sluggish in the lower RPM range is this normal, and how can it be improved on?

Thanks beforehand to all those who send any info.

RIDER: Joe Padilla

REPLY: Zack Schultz
Suzuki in that time period usually has all the models in the family in one book. I other words, the Factory manual for the 78 GS750's would have the E, ES etc. shown. I thought the full floater only had one adjustment for the rear. Are you referring to the knobs on the bottom of the forks? If so, that's for the anti-dive (now out of favor). The bigger number means a bigger bump is need to activate the circuit under braking. Last question, these bike respond fairly well to hot rodding like exhaust systems, jetting and airbox/filter mods. That will pick up the low RPM response. You could also work on degreeing the cams to move some HP around.
Billy Ricks
The larger knob is for spring preload. It has a scale of 1 thru 5 but can be set anywhere in between. Use it to set up the amount of sag. This is the difference between the bike on its centerstand with the wheel up in the air and the bike sitting on the ground with your weight on it. I shoot for about 1 inch of sag. The smaller knob is numbered 1 thru 4. It is for damping. If your bike doesn't settle down quickly in the rear after the suspension is upset try a higher number. As for the service manual I bought one years ago from my Suzuki dealer. I'm not sure if it is still available. I can send you info from mine when need it.
Joe Padilla
Thanks for the info, it was really helpful. I'm waiting for my manual to arrive it has been a while so it should arrive soon.

DATE: June 11, 1998
QUESTION: Model information

I have a GS750EX now it says it was made 11/81 but from the pictures I see it looks like an 82 it has the same plastic front fender and everything.  I know it has had no modifications since new since it has been in family but no one knows what year due to passing of original owner any info would be great.

Do bike manufacturers date like autos six months in advance?

RIDER: Wes Ferguson

REPLY: Frank Perreault

DATE: June 11, 1998
QUESTION: Information needed to order parts

A little over two years ago I purchased an 1980 GS850G, at least that is what it say on the side covers (not exactly sure what you call those items but they are the little plastic sections that cover the fuse box on one side and the break fluid compartment on the other side of the bike). Well, this year I thought that I would utilize the repair manual and try to do some of my own work (this should turn out to be an interesting task as I am not very mechanically inclined but I can follow instructions real well :) rather then sinking a bunch of money into a mechanics pocket. Reading along in this manual I have come to a section that suggest I examine the make/model number information on both the engine and frame and then utilize these numbers when purchasing parts.

Well, this leads me into my question, on both the engine and the frame there is no mention of the G model identifier (the engine reads: GS850 130426 and the frame reads GS850-123578) which is mentioned on the plastic side covers; so when ordering parts what section should I use, the side covers or engine/frame ?

RIDER: Michael Messuri

REPLY: Frank Perreault
The 'G' model was the shaft-drive bike if I remember right.  On the newer frame numbers (not yours) there is supposedly a way to decode the number to determine the model number, but I've never seen it. 

All I can say is that when I order parts at the Suzuki dealer, all I need to supply is the bike year and model (i.e 1981 GS1100EX).  I've never had to supply any other numbers.

DATE: June 11, 1998
QUESTION: Your opinion wanted on GS850's

I am looking at buying a 1983 GS850, 30k n\miles, "in great condition" etc.   It's been 18 years since I rode (last bike was a Honda Hawk 400) and I'm wondering what you all think about (1) this bike in general (I'm strictly commuter and weekend tripper) (2) an asking price of $1300 [or best offer].  This is a wonderful site and as I read through some of the questions and comments I was getting excited about riding again --what a thrill!

RIDER: Daniel Belletti

REPLY: Michael Messuri
Two years ago I purchased a 1980 GS850 with 28k n\miles from my local Suzuki dealer and since then I have almost put 4k in miles on it without any problems what-so-ever. Besides performing the normal maintenance on this bike, the only other work that I have had done on it is to have the clutch replaced (I did not like how the original clutch was acting and it was not real apparent that the previous owner took very good care of the bike).

So with that, in my opinion this is a good motorcycle to own.

DATE: June 11, 1998
QUESTION: Good cruising model info wanted

I have just completed a beginner motorcycle rider course sponsored by the state and had never driven a bike before. I'm hooked and need some advice on what I should look for in a good beginner bike.  I'm 5'6"/130lbs. I will use the bike mostly for weekends and short distances. I'd like a cruiser and want to spend $1500-2000.

RIDER: Susan Brandon

REPLY: Frank Perreault
I would go with one of the GS550's or GS750's.  They are dependable bikes that will handle short trips with no problems, as well as long distances if you decide to widen your horizons.  The 'L' model (i.e. GS550L) is typically the cruiser looking model.  I should warn you, the older bikes were the start of the Japanese motorcycle cruiser so they will not look as good as some of the cruisers you're seeing on the road now.

DATE: June 11, 1998
QUESTION: Model info needed - 1978 GS1000

I recently purchased a 1978 Suzuki GS1000.  Do you know how I can tell whether this is a GS1000, a GS1000S, a GS1000E etc?  Any ideas on where I can find this information?  Any thoughts on good places to check for accessories/replacement parts?

RIDER: Chuck Parks

REPLY: Pete Peters
The extra letter, if any, is usually part of the serial number on the fork stem manufacturer label.  I believe the "S" is the sport model and includes a short fairing.  I believe the "E" has dual front disks and mag wheels. Parts is parts, and are where ya find 'em <g>. I have an '83 GS1100E. I've been able to get all the maintenance/small trim items from the dealer (so far), though everything has to be ordered. I have a good motorcycle salvage yard in my area (Seattle, WA), and I purchase plugs, air filters, chains, etc. from Dennis Kirk, a mail order outfit. There's others in any motorcycle magazine. Welcome to the club. Lotsa good info in the Q&A section.

DATE: May 25, 1998
QUESTION: What bike's have a large round headlight?

Although I do this (motorcycles) for a living, I can not get or find an answer to this one question. What model and years were fitted with the LARGE headlamp (approx. 9", similar to GS1000)? I have been asked this numerous times already this season alone! My local Suz parts guru (couldn't do without him!) can't even get a straight answer from Suz!

RIDER: Ken Austin

REPLY: Billy Ricks
I have an '85 GS 700 E that came with a large 9" (approx.) round headlight.   I've looked in an old buyer's guide and the 86 1150 EG had the large headlight also.
Scott Horner
The most common model you will find the large headlight is on the '82-'83 GS 1100E.  Good Luck!   P.S.  If you need one let me know.
Ken Austin
...And the reply was informative and immediate! Thank You Frank.

DATE: May 2, 1998
QUESTION: Does the GS550L really exist?

A few years ago I owned an '83 GS550L, six speed, chain drive, dual level seat, sissy bar, 4 to 2 pipes, hex tubing frame.

Here's the problem.  According to everyone I talk to, the bike doesn't exist.   I've looked at a bike similar to it, it was a GS550D, only real difference was that the gas cap was right of center, mine was dead center.  I really want to find another but am having a really tough time!

If you've heard of this bike or know somewhere to get one.....

RIDER: Erik T. McNish

REPLY: Tim Noell
Of course the GS550LD really exists.  You own one!  Actually that was in my opinion the best looking of Suzuki's GSL line.  It's been a long time but I   remember they were available in a really nice looking Burgundy color that faded to something akin to root beer if you left it out side.  Also does yours have a 16" front wheel?  Seems to me in 83 that was Suzuki's answer to making it steer in spite of the extended forks and rake....
Edward Bernhard III
I have a 1985 550L, sounds exactly like the one you described.  It is an excellent bike and the cap is in the center like the one you owned.

DATE: April 16, 1998
QUESTION: What model is this 1978 GS1000

Hi, I have a 1978 GS1000, VIN# GS1000510612, It is Black With a white stripe and has dual front disc brakes and alloy wheels (not spokes). Can anyone tell me what model this is? Would the GS Resources add a identifier section to the web site. Seems to be alot of what model questions here.

RIDER: Mike Thompson

REPLY: Tim Noell
What you have is a GS1000EC.  The "E" designates mag wheels, dual disc front brakes, stepped seat and Black/White paint.  The "C" is the designation for 1978 model year.  What a bike!
Mike Thompson
Thanks Tim, I didn't know if it was an HC or EC Thanks for your help.

DATE: April 16, 1998
QUESTION: Book value and power - 1978 GS1000E

What is the blue book value of a '78 GS1000E in good+ condition (original paint, very little rust, seat recovered, not dropped)? And is this bike more powerful than my 1997 Buell S3?

RIDER: Bobbi Geyer

REPLY: Zack Schultz
A 20 year old bike is worth whatever the local market will bring. There are no references (that I know of) that will go back that far. Not having ridden a Buell, but knowing about the inevitable advancement of technology and having met Eric, I'd say the GS is outgunned - but that would be subjective, with no hard data.

DATE: April 10, 1998
QUESTION: Seat information needed - 1981 GS1100

After contacting Corbin and finding out that they do not make a seat for my year bike.   I would like any info on where I might get one for an '81 GS1100 of similar quality.  Thanks!

RIDER: Steve Stein

REPLY: Zack Schultz
Did you ask Corbin if they could use your stock seat pan to make a new seat? That's what I did with my 550. Takes about 8 weeks - bad for this time of year since your bike will be seatless. Maybe they changed policy, but worth a phone call.
Mark Geiger
Steve, contact Sargent.  You can find their number in the back of Motorcyclist or Cycle World.  They will refoam any way you want and steam fit the cover of your choice with a two day turn around for way cheaper then a Corbin seat.

DATE: April 10, 1998
QUESTION: Which manual?

The factory manual is $65;  Clymer or Haynes are $20-30. Looking for comments (good and bad.  Don't be shy!) from people who work on their
bikes as to how useful any/all of these have been to them.  If there's a large enough response, I'll combine the answers for Frank to add to the Tech section.

RIDER: Pete Peters

REPLY: Frank Perreault
As for opinion on manuals, I own both.  I like the Suzuki because the thing lays out like a notebook which makes it handy when actually using it while working on the bike.  The pictures are decent also.  The Clymer books are nice in that they show you ways in which you can get jobs done without the use of Suzuki's expensive, specialized tools.  They also lay things out in the book in a better sequence.   The Suzuki manual tends to jump all over the place.  I like 'em both and it does help if you have questions that aren't explained that well in one, you can always jump to the other for reference.

DATE: March 22, 1998
QUESTION: Windscreen options - 1983 GS550E

Are there any aftermarket windscreens available for an 83 GS550E? It has a "fly-screen" that covers the headlamp, but I'm looking for more protection. Any ideas would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

RIDER: Tad.Gralewski

REPLY: Wilbur Thompson
I have a 83 GS650GD and recently put a windscreen on it.  I bought it mail order from Chaparral Cycle Supply in San Bernardino. They will send you a free catalog if you call them.  Phone # is 1800-841-2960.  My wind screen is a National Cycle--Plexistar 2.  It has worked out really fine and it can be taken off in about 1 min..  Hope that helps.
Zack Schultz
Try Gustafsson Plastics in Florida. 904-824-2119 Or search the salvage yards for the fairing and bracket and possibly the headlight assembly and bracket for any year 550ES. They have a 1/4 fairing and a (slightly) larger windscreen. BTW, I own one. You could try Air Tech for the ES bodywork and get the brackets from a dealer.

DATE: March 8, 1998
QUESTION: Is this a good bike?

Frank, firstly I want to thank all those who produce "GS Resources" site. Excellent information.

Next, I'm about to buy a 1980 GS850G from the original owner with just 5k on the odometer; this bike is exceptionally clean, I've even test ridden it....not a glitch (well, the owner is a machinist*?!). However, is there a difference between the
years 1980,'81,'82,'83? Is any one year "better" than another? As the seller wants $1100 I feel this is a pretty reasonable price?  Finally, if I bought any used GS, would you recommend replacing the stator as a routine procedure?

RIDER: Ivan Crow

REPLY: Frank Perreault
Thanks for the compliment!  We work hard to keep this place going and it's good to hear the thank you's from our readers.

In my opinion, this is a nice bike for the money.  It appears that it was taken care of and not abused.  As for the differences between model years, there are just minor changes but nothing significant.  The GS motor is rock solid but racers tend to prefer the '81 because it was a bit stouter internally.  That doesn't mean that the other years are bad.  It only comes play if you plan on massively changing the engine, to say, crank out 175 horsepower.  So no, there really is no difference for the "normal" user.

As for changing the stator - yes, I would change it.

DATE: March 8, 1998
QUESTION: Cheaper tire suggestions - GS8560G

I'm starting to see small cracks in my front tire, I guess it's time to change them. Consulted my local bike shop and they recommended Metzeler tire ME33 Laser (front) and ME99A(rear)for my `79 GS850G, they're suppose to have the best traction in wet & dry and the best mileage, but they cost a lot.

Does anyone have any suggestions on cheaper alternatives? Maybe with similar traction and mileage but are more affordable, and are best for my bike.

RIDER: Adonis Que

REPLY: Frank Perreault
You know that this will probably bring up all sorts of arguments, right?   ;-)   First of all, nothing good is cheap and you get what you pay for.   Those clichés out of the way, I have found that if you are looking for a tire that is a good general purpose tire, go with Continentals.  They give good mileage and stick pretty good in the wet.

If you are an aggressive rider, then you'll have to spend the bucks in order to get something that sticks.  Of course that means they wear out sooner, therefore costing you more money in the long run.
Mike Saxon
I have been using Dunlop K491s.  Much cheaper than the Metzelers, and have very predictable handling characteristics (a good match for the GS850). They are also designed for heavier bikes - they have good wear characteristics as well.

DATE: February 15, 1998
QUESTION: Parts dealer information for 1980 GS850G

I recently purchased a 1980 Suzuki GS850G and was wondering if anyone could suggest a good online website which sells older model Suzuki parts. I don't have any need of any parts yet, but just might down the road. Also, if anyone could suggest a few mail order catalogs that would be of help, I would greatly appreciate it.

RIDER: Jesse Bellavance

REPLY: Zack Schultz
Very few SGP (Suzuki Genuine Parts) dealers have a catalog. I have had good success with most aftermarket mail order houses and most have catalogs. You can find them in the back of the mags.  However, for SGP, I highly recommend Midwest Action Cycle 1-800-343-0608 or

DATE: February 15, 1998
QUESTION: GS500 valve count and what about classics?

O.K, let's get something clear here.  Throughout the net I'm reading stats on the GS500 that say it has 2 valves per cylinder while others say it has 4 valves.  So how many valves per cylinder does the bike have and why don't you have anything on them?   Only classics here?

RIDER: ???

REPLY: Frank Perreault
I can't help you with the valve count so I'll leave that to someone else.   As for not having anything on the newer 500cc bike, yes, we do concentrate on the classic GS's.  As the title on the GS Resources homepage states, "Suzuki motorcycles: classic GS/GSX models '76-'83:".   I'm sure that if someone out there knows the answer, they'll let you know what it is.
Zack Schultz
Straight from the Suzuki web site (to verify my memory). The '98 GS500 has 4 valves. Since it's a twin, that would mean 2 per cylinder. Probably what's causing the confusion is that most times, specs read '4 valve head' which would be 4 per cylinder. The 500 is an outgrowth of the old GS450 itself a grown up 400. Back when the engineering was done, that bore (and engine) is too small to benefit from 4 valves per.

Hope this helps.

DATE: February 15, 1998
QUESTION: Differences between models

I am considering buying a 1982 GS1100L and after checking out your web page, I'm convinced to do so. Just one question though, what is the difference between the E, G, and L models? This is my first experience with the Suzuki GS's and your help would be appreciated.

RIDER: J. Payne

REPLY:  Bill Chandler
The E model's were setup in the "STANDARD" seating position. A little sporty but made for all-round riding.  Click here to see a pic.

The G models are Shaft Drive.

The L models are setup for a more "cruiser" seating position.  The Cruiser rage was just starting to catch on in the early 80's so, Japanese manufacturers were attempting to modify their stock bikes to look like a cruiser.  The results were less than desirable.  It wasn't until later that they (the Japanese) released "true" cruiser models.  Hope this helps'

DATE: January 30, 1998
QUESTION: What model bike is this?

I just bought a GS for $100. It is sitting at my sister's house now waiting for the title. (the owner's wife made him sell it due to the speed of it) My question is do you have any idea which model has the fuel injection, short fairing, lower induction fairing and back cowl? He thought it was a 78-79 GS 1000 or GS1100. It has been repainted and is a chain drive. The top speed has been past the 140MPH limit on the speedo. ( it has the words "fuel injection" on the handlebar mounting cover) Also, he thinks the bars are stock. They are straight drag style bars. Do you have any ideas about what it is?

RIDER: Todd Mason

REPLY: Zack Schultz
OK some of this is a guess but..

I'm pretty sure (almost positive) that until the '97 GSXR and TL models, the only Suzuki with EFI was the XN85 Turbo. Odds are that's not what you have since it was actually a 650cc engine. My guess is that you have one of the early Katana's (model designation ?) they came in 1000cc (1100? not sure) and 550cc. Your description sounds pretty much like one. The fairing is pretty pointed towards the front and stock color is what can best be described as titanium - but that's not what Suzuki called it. They also had dual shocks with painted springs, the wheels were color matched and I seem to recall the brake calipers were also.

If it is a Katana (especially the big motor), it's worth hanging on to. The bike itself is pretty impressive, rather rare since the styling was about 6-8 years ahead of anything else and didn't sell well.

On the other hand, it could be a GS1100 or 1150 since you're not sure of the year. they have larger fairings (ES model) and a HUGE headlight.

Hope this helps somewhat.

DATE: December 23, 1997
QUESTION: Is this bike a good buy?

Frank, I am about to purchase my first motorcycle. A friend of mu\ine has a GS1000 for sale he says I can have for $200.00 because he is really strapped for money. My question to you is since the bike has been sitting idle for about 4 years is there anything I should look out for specifically?
And is a GS1000 a good starter bike for an adult?

RIDER: Kevin D. Stump

REPLY: Frank Perreault
The concern here is that the bike has been sitting idle for so long. This raises the possibility that the bike won't even start if it wasn't properly taken care of before storage. Check out "Pulling that bike out of storage" to see what you may be getting into. The article is located in the Q&A - Maintenance section.

If the bike starts, the next thing is a test ride. Any unusual noises or vibrations should raise suspicions. Give a couple twists of the grip to see how well the engine reacts. Once the ride is over then go over the bike checking for broken pieces, worn parts like brakes, tires, battery, shocks, etc..

The bottom line is even though the bike is only costing $200 you may end up spending a few hundred more to get it to be a safe, road-worthy vehicle. As for the GS1000 being a good bike, I'd say yes. Just be careful with the throttle since there is a bit of power behind it, though I certainly wouldn't call it unmanageable. Take your time to get used to it and you'll be fine.

DATE: December 5, 1997
QUESTION: What should he do?

Hi! The GS homepage is great! But it has added to my growing dilemma...

I commute 110 miles/day, and have worn out my GL1100. (It's my first bike). I've read bits & pieces of bikie stuff in general over the years, and would like to replace her with a durable UJM (or a sport tourer of the Kawa type, or maybe the german make).

My dilemma: My riding includes one mtn. pass and is 90% freeway, and we experience a lot of high wind in my area. My old mount handles the wind very well, and passing a semi on the freeway is a simple roll of the throttle. I'm hesitant to replace my 1100 CC's with a 650 or 750, but the GS's I keep finding for sale are 650's, and the Be Eem I prefer is a 750... But would I miss the power of a bigger engine?

I also have not located performance specs for my old mount, (like horsepower ratings) to help me in my quest for the best route to go in my new purchase.

...You got the drift? Me Be Lost!! And the GS pages have only added to the confusion! Everyone loves their GS!

Any tips/comments/musings would be appreciated!!!

...I really MUST like headaches!

RIDER: Chris Koldewyn

REPLY: Frank Perreault
Looking at getting a Kawa or a German bike to replace your GS and you're looking for help here?

Only kidding... ;-)

Would you miss the horsepower? It all depends on how often you use it. A typical older GS1100 cranks out 103 HP and I doubt if the older 750's come close, though some of the newer ones are pretty snappy and those may come close. The best I can offer is try it and see. I'm one of those guys that likes 'ponies" so I could never go back to something with less, but that's just me.

And yes, we love our GS's!!!

DATE: December 5, 1997
QUESTION: Where are those GSX1100G's?

BTW, what is the reason the early `90's GSX1100G's are not part of the GS Resources page? Just curious, and coincidentally, am considering a purchase.

RIDER: John Gurvitch

REPLY: Frank Perreault
I'm not sure what you mean by "not part of the GS Resources page". I've did notice that we do currently have one 1100G model registration.

We only print what we get in terms of bike registries, Q&A, etc.. My impression is that there where not a lot of GSX1100G's made since most people preferred the 'E' model. I believe that it's because of this, that you will find more questions and information regarding the 'E' models vs. the 'G' models, on this web site.

DATE: December 5, 1997
QUESTION: Oil cooler for a 1980 GS1000G

I have a 1980 Suzuki GS1000G and I too have noticed that the GS runs quite hot in slow traffic in warm weather. I saw mentions of oil coolers in the question-answer page. Where can I buy a good oil cooler for my bike that is also easy to install? Thank you for any help provided.

RIDER: Terry Blair

REPLY: Frank Perreault
Due to the age of the bike it will be extremely difficult to find an oil cooler for the bike. One of the main oil cooler manufacturers when I bought my 1981 called Lockhart has gone out of business. Other than calling various dealers, motorcycle junk yards and such, you may also want go to the Wanted section of our web site to place a request for a oil cooler there.

Most oil coolers are not difficult to install. Some involve changing the oil filter cover while others require removing the oil gallery plugs and installing oil connection fittings there. The thing to remember is that if you are buying an oil cooler not in a box, to make sure that you have all the pieces and of course, the instructions.

DATE: December 5, 1997
QUESTION: Thanks!!!

Wanted to thank you for the effort put into helping us GSer's with the myriad of problems we run across. I am 65 and run an astronomical observatory here on the Big Island Of Hawaii and ride my 83 GS1100G to the mountain (35 miles) once a week. Wonderful bike and I have owned 3 1/2 of every bike ever built, and in 50 years of riding have yet to find anything that suits me as well. Bought a V65 Honda Magna the other day and it scared me silly! Sold it!! Anyway thanks again. Ken

RIDER: Ken Barton

REPLY: Frank Perreault
Ken, it's great to hear that you find that GS of yours such a great bike. All of us around here would tend to agree with you on that one!
And thanks for the kind words. This is a forum which allows me and others to be able to share some of our knowledge and experience with other GS owners. If we can help a fellow GS owner out of a jam or help in any other way, then this web site is fulfilling its purpose. I can only speak personally, but it makes me feel good to be able to share some of the information I know, with other GS owners.

DATE: December 5, 1997
QUESTION: What kind of fairing is this?

I have been a follower of the GS Resources page for a while and find it invaluable in the sheer amount of information it provides. I have a 1982 GS1100GL and I love the machine. I would like, however, to get a fairing for it. Paging through your picture index I found a picture of a 1982 GSX1100EZ with an absolutely beautiful fairing on it. The owner raves about the fairing but doesn't mention it's name brand or model.

Can you tell me what type of fairing it is or get me the owners e-mail address so I can ask him? If you can help feel free to e-mail me at Thanks for your time.

RIDER: Greg Schultz

REPLY: Frank Perreault
If this is the 3rd entry listed on our Gallery page you may be surprised to know that this bike and fairing is owned by none other than  Peter Huppertz.

As for my guess, it looks like a Windjammer or equivalent.

DATE: December 5, 1997
QUESTION: Manuals and Pictures

Finally found a GS page. I'm trying to find an owners manual on my bike that I just purchased or better yet, a shop book. It's a 1985 GS750EF. Any ideas? Having a hell of a time trying to get one. My first bike and really enjoy it. To be honest, I'm possessed. Driven alot of bikes before but not like this one!! I've taken a before picture and if all goes well I would like to send in an after picture. Bought the bike for $800.00 Canadian. Hoping you could give me some suggestions.

RIDER: Paolo Bertolotti Jr.

REPLY: Frank Perreault
I'm glad to see that you found us. As for the shop manual, see the article below titled Shop manual recommendations. The problem is that it may be extremely difficult to get a manual for these older bikes, but give it a shot anyway. You may also want go to the Wanted section of our web site to place a request for a manual there. (I see you did already!)

As for the pictures, feel free to send a picture to
Bill Chandler, the editor responsible for the new Pic-of-the-Month feature. Why not get some glory for owning a good looking GS, eh? You can also submit any pictures to Bill Chandler, Peter Huppertz or I for inclusion to our Gallery.

DATE: November 19, 1997
QUESTION: Need picture, 198x GS 450

Do you know where I can find a picture of this bike?

RIDER: Francois van der Merwe, Cape Town, South Africa

REPLY: Bill Chandler
If you look through our WEBS site, you can probably find a few individuals who have the same bike.

Good Luck!

DATE: November 19, 1997
QUESTION: What are the 'real' colors for a GS1000?

I have a question that is the center of attention between several owners and there does not seem to be any of us in agreement. I have heard by more than one rider that there is a Red/White version of the popular Blue/White 79 Suzuki GS 1000 "SN" or the 80 GS 1000 "ST". My local Suzuki dealership says that a Red/White version was never produced. However, there is a rider somewhere in Australia who claims to have one (I'm still waiting on a pic). Opinions aren't of much help at this point, DOES ANYBODY HAVE ANY PROOF EITHER WAY?

RIDER: Pat Miller

REPLY: Michael Dixon (1981 GS850GT owner)
I saw a question that you had posted in the GS Resources web site concerning whether the GS1000S was ever produced in a red/white colour scheme. I hope the photo attached will settle your discussion.  The photo came from a book by Roger W Hicks titled "Classic Motorbikes" (published in 1992 by Colour Library Books in Surrey, England). Unfortunately my little hand-held scanner does not do the bike justice, but you can get the idea.  (Ed. - This pic is a .JPG) Click here for picture

I can recall seeing several of these bikes in red during the late 70's and early 80's around here (New Zealand), but the blue variation was definitely more popular. They were obviously sold in Europe with this colour too, but I don't know about the US.

DATE: November 8, 1997
QUESTION: Questions on GS1150E

Thank you for this great site. I have a 1978 GS1000E black U.S. model. My question: Does anyone have or have access to production figures for my model bike? I don't see many of them around anymore. Maybe I'll see another one or two at very large rallies. Its good to see so many other riders enjoying these older bikes. By the way, I bought mine new in 78. Thanks.


REPLY: Zack Schultz
The 'E' models had a small bikini fairing - more like a headlight cover. The 'ES' models had a quarter fairing. Brackets, fairing and I think a headlight remount will convert it either way.

DATE: November 8, 1997
QUESTION: Tubeless tires, headlamp bulbs and shop manual

I own a `79 GS850GN. Does anyone know if these originally came with both wheels capable of taking tubeless tires? My mechanic says that because there is no "tubeless" stamped on the front wheel, it cannot take a tubeless tire safely. Does anyone know of this designation on the wheel being essential for mounting tubeless tires. Anyone have any suggestions for improving night lighting? a type of headlight, or mods? I am looking for a copy of the owners manual and or the shop manual for this bike. Will pay. I am located in western Massachusetts.

RIDER: John Gurvitch

REPLY: Frank Perreault
Your mechanic is probably correct in that the rim must be marked tubeless in order for it to safely be used with a tubeless tire. Also, my 1981 GS11OOE cannot take tubeless tires, so I would assume your older bike cannot either. Another reason that I have heard of why you can't use a non-tubeless rim with a tubeless tire is that the aluminum used to make the rim is too porous therefore, the tire would continually lose air. So I'd suggest using a tube. Remember, you can still use a tube within a tubeless tire.

As for a brighter headlight, check out some of the bigger wattage halogen bulbs that are available. Due to the higher current draw you may want to order yourself a new Electrex rectifier/regulator to prevent any electrical meltdowns. Check out The Stator Papers III for information on how to obtain the Electrex rectifier/regulator.

As for a owners manual, try contacting Suzuki for the factory manual and Clymer for an aftermarket copy. Clymer's address is listed in one of the messages below. If you still can't find it, let me know and I'll place a question for you in the Questions section of this site.
John Gurvitch
I just read your "answer" to my questions. Thanx for the info. I will try to follow up on your suggestions.
Frank Perreault
I just realized something. You may want to go to the Wanted section of our web site to place a request the manual there also.

DATE: November 8, 1997
QUESTION: Oil cooler questions and comments

Greetings one and all.. I'm the proud owner of a 1982 GS1100G. It has approximately 30k miles on it.. I've owned it for almost 3 years now and haven't had any (major) problems with it.....

This question is for any of you out there that have installed an oil cooler on your bike: Where did you 'tap' into the motor for the supply and return lines to/from the oil cooler? I went to a Suzuki dealer once upon a time, and couldn't get a straight answer from them-seems they wanted to do the work for me (how nice of them......). So, any help would be appreciated..

RIDER: Brian Zimmerman

REPLY: Frank Perreault
OK, I have a Lockhart oil filter on my beast.  It does not use any kind of custom oil filter coverplate.  It connects to the oil ports on each side of the engine block adjacent to the oil filter.  The only other thing is that they give you a plug to block the oil hole that you find right behind the oil filter cover.  Other than that that's it.
Peter Huppertz
Our tech consultant Ritzo uses an oil cooler from (get this) a Citroen 2CV - one of the most humble cars ever known to man. He plugs into the same holes Frank plugs in. This does, however, not provide full flow... if I'm correctly informed only 30% of the oil goes through the cooler in a full pass.
Bill Chandler
I have a Lockheed 4-pass unit with an adapter plate. This setup provides full flow. Even in summer, I sometimes have trouble to get the bike to the 210-degree-mark. Outside summer I have to cover the thing at least partly or it'll just never warm up. I'm looking to get a thermostat fitted.

On the positive side, even when doing serious ZXR bashing on a hot day in the mountains, the oil temp gauge never gets beyond, say, two-thirds.
Frank Perreault
With your oil cooler maybe it would be a good thing to run off the ports instead of using the adapter plate (full flow vs. 30% flow) since you are getting too much cooling as it is.

Another thing in regards to the Lockhart oil coolers.  When I bought mine they made 2 models - one had a thermostat built into the oil cooler itself and the other doesn't but the cooler without has higher flow rate numbers.  I went with the thermo model and I haven't had to horse around with it at all, regardless of outside air temperature.

REPLY: Ritzo Muntinga
The plugs on the front of the Suzie 1100 engine are to be used for an oil cooler. Major setback: The supply from the oil pump is diverted into a line straight into the oil filter and a line through the oil cooler also into the oil filter. Connecting an oil cooler onto the two plugs means maybe 10 percent of the full oil flow through the cooler.

On my own bike I did the following:

I put a plug in the outlet directly to the oil filter, So the former bypass would become main oil-line. I largened the oilways to the oil cooler-connections in the engine lower-casing. There are a lot of small passages to be widened! Then I made up for the pressure-drop in the now to install oil cooler. By fitting oil pump gears off a 16-valve GS750 the pump will run at a 30 percent higher speed. I also added a thermostat to control the oil-temperature (a Lockhart item) The cooler is off a Citroen 2CV6, almost for free....

The engine heats up quite fast now and the oil-temperature never exceeds 100 degrees Celsius.

What you have Bill is a full-flow oil cooler system similar to mine. The main oil flow is fed through the cooler and then fed back into the oilfilter-housing. You just happened to have a special filter-baseplate I didn't have.The system is the same, it saves you a lot of work as you don't have to split the cases to widen the oil-lines. Getting the 750 oilpumpgears in is nevertheless a very sensible conversion, as you will have a pressure-drop in your oilcooler. The exhaust valve-rockers don't like less oil than they get get in the standard set-up.

DATE: November 8, 1997
QUESTION: Is this a good deal?

I found this address on the GS resource page. I would like to know something about the Suzuki GS 750 L, manufactured in the early '80s, and sporting 4-valve engine and a "custom" look, with buckhorn bar, big saddle, black paintwork etc. It goes for 3.800.000 It.Lire (about 2,300 US $).

Can you enlighten about the pros and cons of this bike? Thanks in advance.

RIDER: Dario Galassi

REPLY: Frank Perreault
I've previously owned a 1976 GS750 and loved it. As with any potential buy, examine the bike closely and don't be afraid to give it a test ride. Listen for any odd noises, check for leaks, worn pieces, etc.. The price seems a tad high to me, but then again, these are overseas prices.

DATE: November 4, 1997
QUESTION: Shop manual recommendations

I have a 1981 GS1000G and now I need to do some shop stuff, like fork seals first. I'd like recommendations on after-market shop manuals.

What is your favorite, and why?

RIDER: Lee Barker

REPLY: Bill Chandler
I always go the factory route. It may not cover everything the way it should be covered, but it's direct from the source. If you can't believe the source, who can you believe?
Peter Huppertz
Yeah, sure.

  1. You cannot believe The Source.
  2. If what The Source says is not a direct lie, it is at least formulated in dark ways, so as to make sure that any single thinking organism is unable to understand.

If you want to be really sure, consult The Source for numbers, and other knowledgeable sources for methods. Consequently, the factory manual will be able to inform you about the valve clearances. It will also tell you that you will need special tool number so and so to depress the cam followers of the GS1000G engine in order to be able to exchange shims.

A good aftermarket manual will tell you how to manufacture that multi $$$ special tool yourself. See what I mean?
Frank Perreault
OK, I say go with both a factory manual and an aftermarket book. Having more than just one manual will allow you to make a decision in how to take something apart by showing alternative dismantling procedures. Sometimes one book will be easier to read than others due to language translations. And yes, aftermarket books tend to show ways of getting around the use of those special, expensive, factory tools, if at all possible. So I say buy both, if you can get your hands on them. For aftermarket books, I like Clymer.

As for that aftermarket manual you might want to try to contact Clymer Publications, Repair Manuals, P.O. Box 12901, Overland Park, KS 66282, Tel: (913) 967 1713. Hopefully, they'll have the manual for your bike.

DATE: October 30, 1997

Does anybody need a seat for their GS? I am seriously considering making seat pans because there seems to be a huge demand for them. E-mail me and let me know.

RIDER: Patrick Miller

REPLY: Bill Chandler
Being the site editor for the Marketplace, I get to see ALL the ad's people are sending to me. I also get a lot of requests for various stuff. I don't get the impression that there is a HUGE amount of requests for seats. However, I haven't been focusing on this so I may be wrong. What I suggest, is for you to contact the following companies (individuals) to see if they show any interest in working with you on this proposed venture. They have some insight (due to their respective businesses) that would (could) help you determine if this is a marketable product.
The contacts are:

PNMA (Pacific Northwest Motorcycle Adventures)
Scott Sargent (owner)
His company RENT's early model GS850's and GS1100's and operates out of BEND OR.
Check our Links page for the phone number.

Scott Horton (Heads Up Performance)
He's a regular contact here regarding early model GS parts (mostly engine stuff on the BIG bikes). He does rep some after-market components so may have inputs for you.

Located in Jacksonville FL.
They redo cycle seats. To factory original or custom. They use the factory PAN (as opposed to Corbin who makes his own pans). They may be interested in your venture.
PHONE: 1-800-749-7328 Fax 904-355-5404
(they did my seat and I was VERY happy with the results.)

Good luck. If you decide to do this, let us know and we'll advertise for you.

DATE: Oct 1, 1996
QUESTION: Rookie Rider

Can anyone help me out on a couple of situations? First I have never purchased or ridden a bike before but I have been reading cycle mags for almost 2 years now. I want to buy a bike but really do not know what capacity I can handle as a rookie rider. I really like the look and style of the Katana 600's. Is that too powerful? Should I be looking for a used bike. I can probably spend between $4,000 and $5,000. Besides the bike will I have to spend any more money on certain extras (besides a helmet)? Thanks for your time.

RIDER: Adam Kindl

REPLY: Frank Perreault
This is more of a philosophy question than a technical one, but I'll give it a shot. First, let me say a bike is loaded gun - in the wrong hands it can kill. If you take a good motorcycle course and you ride smart, a Katana 600, in my opinion, would be a good bike. It is a stylish bike, it isn't heavy and the engine has a good amount of kick to it. The main thing to remember is to gain riding experience before attempting any nutty stuff. If you use your head, you should have no problem. Just remember, this isn't no bicycle. (Man, I sound like my father...)
As for expenses, you'll have insurance, registration, a helmet, a good rainsuit and anything else you want to buy. The possibilities are endless.




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