T500 Readers Write

From: Jim Cornes

Date: Sun, 18 Aug 1999 -0600

I own a 1971 T500 Suzuki, and have had it for about 20 years. I think is the only one of its type in New Zealand, its called a "Dresda". I have done some basic research about the bike and the name Dresda is the trademark of a British aftermarket motorcycle maker Dave Degens, who was also a fairly good racer in the 1950's and 1960,s. Dave's normal claim to fame is his "Triton" bikes, where he puts a worked Triumph motor into a modified Norton featherbed frame, and are very popular Cafe racers for the British riders.

I have found one other bike in NZ which seems to be a Norton frame with a Dresda Box section rear swing-arm powered by a T500 Suzuki Motor. My bike is quite different from that one, as it has a fairly standard T500 frame, but has a huge 5 gallon fibre-glass fuel tank (which looks like a Ducati) and a fibre-glass seat/rear mudguard which makes it into a single seat cafe-racer looking bike. The main feature are the homemade Expansion chambers which are rough as guts, but give the bike an exhaust note similar to two chain-saws going at once.

I think the only motor changes seem to be a masive porting job to match the exhaust system, but the rear spocket is very small and the bike is high geared because of this and can't run 5th gear because it doesn't get into the power band, about 20 years ago when I had no brains I rung it out to 138mph (225kph) in four gear on the speedo but don't think I could do it now! Another unique modification is the rear set foot peg's which I think are actually the old passenger rear foot pegs, and the gear lever has simply been put on backwards which adds to the hardest thing to ride the bike, is an upside down gear change patern. The bike can't be registered for NZ roads now because of the decibal reading of the exhaust system, but I want to fully restore the bike and bring it up to TR500 motor specifications with some type of two- stroke chambers that will street legal, can you help with the spec's? My E-mail is [email protected] and postal address is Jim Cornes, PO Box 31.014, Lower Hutt, Wellington, New Zealand and contact phone number is 64-4-5862293 and computer phone fax is 64-4-5862294, thanks.

From: Glen Morgan

Date: Sun, 30 Apr 1999

Hi! I'm currently well down the track building a t500 racer. I've found the stuff on your sight very interesting. With reference to the fitting a t350/250 swinging arm, the one I pirated from my now defunct PE400 powered, GT 350 framed club racer fits, is lighter and is better braced, but there is a small complication:

The t500 has a slightly wider frame than the t350 where the rear shocks are mounted. The result is that your shocks will vee inward as they go down onto the 350 swinging arm shock mounting studs. This is not good for the rubber bushes and looks a bit strange. The mounting studs from the t500 swinging arm can be transferred to the t350 swinging arm to correct this.

Grind off the welds on the insides of the swinging arms until you begin to see the thin circular line which indicates that you are through to the unwelded, interference fit part of the stud base. Get someone to hold the arm with the stud down something like a hole in an anvil or a piece of inch water pipe braced against the floor or some other solid object. Use a punch or the ball end of your engineer's hammer to drive the studs out of the swinging arms.

The flanged base of the t350 studs is of smaller diameter than the t500 studs.Drill or file the holes in the t350 swinging arm out to a tight press fit for the larger, deeper stud base flanges on the t500 studs. Fit them to the same depth as they were on the t500 swinging arm and make sure they are perpendicular. Arc weld the bases in as formerly done by Susuki then carefully braze around the stud flanges on the outside for extra security. Voila!

Cheers from Glen Morgan Email at [email protected]

Glen's project bike

Copyright reserved: M Barnard 1997

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