SUZUKI GS1000

Mellowmotorcycles Cafe Racer Suzuki GS1000

I was contacted by Mellowmotorcycles and they graciously asked if I could report on two of their recent builds. After having a long look I thought "Hell yes!". I was linked to one of my favourite websites aptly named Return Of The Cafe Racers and was very highly impressed! I'll let Return of the Cafe Racers tell the story...

"Recently I published our first custom motorcycle build by Mellow Motorcycles in Germany. While I was putting the story about their GS550 cafe racer together I happened across another great looking bike in their stable. It was built using an icon of 1970's racing, a Suzuki made famous by Wes Cooley when he won the AMA Superbike Championship over two consecutive years, a 1979 GS1000. Not wanting to let it slip by I questioned workshop co-founder Flo Hubert about the bike. As it turned out the custom Suzuki GS1000 was built in close succession to the first bike, but their end goal with this build was less about show and more about go."

"It's a personal build we completed to showcase to our customers the possibilities of what we can do at Mellow Motorcycles." Flo explained. "We built the GS1000 alongside of the 'Tintin' GS550 project, but focused more on developing a classically inspired 'race bike' with a tuned engine."

The GS1000, which has been named 'Babo45' was a concept drawn up by Flo's business partner Amir, who has a racing background that is evident with the direction he took with this build. "He's more the classic racing guy and I come from a more aesthetic design discipline. He goes racing at the weekend, I make short trips around the world, to explore cities and different cultures. That's what I call a mind cleansing weekend. Amir needs to burn some rubber to settle his thoughts." jokes Flo."...

Suzuki Adds the GS1000 to Vintage Bike Parts Programme

Suzuki UK recently announced their classic GS1000 has been added to the lineup of classics and vintage bikes featured in the programme.

A few words from the Suzuki UK website...

"VINTAGE PARTS

KEEPING THE PASSION ALIVE

Welcome to Vintage Parts. We've recognised the huge demand for Genuine Suzuki Parts for many of the Vintage Suzuki motorcycles. Whether you have a project bike needing a complete renovation, or you're just looking for a gasket for your RGV250, Vintage Parts will help you to keep your motorcycling passion alive."

Introduced in 1978, the GS1000 was the basis of some of the most successful race bikes of its era, with victories at Daytona, Suzuka and the Isle of Man TT.

Suzuki GB's Tim Davies adds: “The GS1000 is renowned for its classic status and is still desirable today, and we're delighted to be able to add it to our Vintage Parts programme, with so many parts still available. As a result it makes maintaining or restoring one of these iconic machines even easier, with owners manuals and other parts booklets available to download for free from the Vintage Parts website too.”

Other models in the scheme include the RGV250 VJ21, GT750J-M, GSX-R750F-H, GT250EX and AP50.

So go to https://www.suzuki-gb.co.uk/mx/my-suzuki/vintage-parts/ for more info and ordering up the real deal for your project bike or classic racer

Here's what Jarmo Haapamaki at Suzukicycles.org has to say about the Suzuki GS1000:

"Surprising everyone, Suzuki Motor Company presented a late prototype of GS1000, their first 1000 cc motorcycle in the Paris motorcycle show, the 64th Salon an der Porte de Versailles, in 1977.

Back in 1977, the manufacturers competed against each other by making larger and more powerful motorcycle engines (sound familiar?) and 1000 was a very respectable number on the side panel. Kawasaki had already released its KZ1000 and Yamaha the powerful XS11. Honda had its GL1000 Gold Wing. Suzuki was the last one of the Japanese ”big four” to join the exclusive ”1000 cc club” with the GS1000."

The GS1000 was based around the successful GS750, which was the lightest of the 750's available at the time. What Suzuki wanted was a simple design, that benefited from solid engineering and light weight. And they succeeded. The GS1000 was only slightly heavier than its smaller brother, which was quite an achievement. By lengthening the stroke of the (relatively short stroke) GS750 engine from 56,4 to 70 mm the cylinder displacement was enlarged from 748 to 997 cc. The lower end of the GS750 was strong enough to cope with the 1 1 liter cylinder displacement but the list of modifications was longer than just adding 14,6 mm to the stroke. The redesigned 750 engine put into the 1000 was actually lighter than the 750 engine! The power output in 1978 was given to 83—90 hp depending of the export country (differences in environment and noise regulations).

Even in other aspects, the GS1000 was in many details based on the GS750, introduced a year earlier. The GS1000 had five speeds, chain drive and tubular steel cradle frame like the GS750, but there's many differences between the models, not just cosmetic (the fuel tank and the design of the rear end of the bike being the most obvious differences). The suspension of the big brother was more advanced, using air and oil dampened front fork.

The GS1000 was arguably the best one-liter four-cylinder of its time.

None of the GS1000 models were sold in its home country, Japan, where selling motorcycles with larger than 750 cc engines was not allowed until 1990, the VX800 roadster being the first model sold in Japan with a piston displacement larger than 750 cc.

The first GS1000s arrived to shops in February 1978. At first the model was called GS1000 (without the E). The first models had conventional rear shocks but in May 1978 they were replaced with gas/air suspension, covered with chromed steel tube.

The final version of the GS1000 differed in couple of details from the pre-launch model, presented in 1977.
A letter ”S” after a Suzuki model name normally means that the engineers have basically mounted a cockpit (bikini) fairing to the bike to make it (look) more sporty. That's even the case with the GS1000S. I believe it was the first standard Suzuki sold with a fairing.

GS1000S was based on the GS1000E but didn't have its pneumatic rear suspension. The fairing gained the bike's weight with 5 kg (11 lbs) and included a clock and oil temperature gauge on the instrument panel. The rear wheel diameter was increased from 17 to 18 inches on the S model.

Apparently the German version of the GS1000S did have the pneumatic rear suspension and had a 17-inch rear wheel. Slightly different bikes were sold in different parts of the world.

The GS1000S is also known as the Wes Cooley replica. The GS series worked well on the track, too, Wes Cooley and Yoshimura winning the young AMA Superbike Championship for Suzuki in the late seventies. The Suzuki GS1000S actually homologated the fairing for race use in the AMA Superbike class. It was very fast bike, being one of the absolute fastest motorcycles in the world. In today's standards, the model was a suicide machine with poor high speed stability but back in 1979 it handled as well as its competitors.

The beautiful GS1000S was manufactured under two years, 1980 being the last model year for the GS1000S. Then the GSX1100S Katana took its place being the fastest and sportiest Suzuki motorcycle. Apparently the nickname ”Wes Cooley replica” came some time after the model was released and the model was never officially known as the Wes Cooley replica by Suzuki. Apparently the GS1000S started being called that after Kawasaki released their Eddie Lawson replica years later.
In 1979 Suzuki introduced even a custom version of the GS1000E called GS1000L. It had same mechanics as the GS1000G but had high handlebars, stepped seat, leading axle front fork, smaller fuel tank (15 l/ 4.0 US gal) and short cut silencers. 19-inch wheels.

The GS1000L was manufactured between 1979 and 1981.

1980-83 Suzuki GS1100 E/ES

By Richard Backus May/June 2011

The 1980-1983 Suzuki GS1100 E/ES.

Years produced: 1980-1983 Claimed power: 108hp @ 8,500rpm (1983) Top speed: 140mph (1983 test) Engine type: 1,074cc air-cooled DOHC 16-valve inline four Weight: 552lb (w/half-tank fuel) MPG: 35-55mpg Price then/now: $4,350 (1983)/$2,000-$4,000

It’s fair to say that the basic design criteria for today’s four-pot, racer-on-the-road sportbikes were established in the early 1980s: Kawasaki introduced fuel injection on its GPz bikes (Kawasaki GPz550, Kawasaki GPz750); Honda gave us liquid cooling in the VF range (1984-85 Honda Sabre VF700S, 1985 Honda VF1000R); Yamaha pioneered a peripheral frame in the Yamaha FJ1100; and Honda was also first to fit 16 valves on a four-banger with the Honda CB750F. But after trailing the pack as the last of the Big Four to abandon two-stroke technology, Suzuki leapt to the front with its 1977 Suzuki GS750 and Suzuki GS1000. In 1980, they moved the bar higher still with the Suzuki GS1100.

The GS1100E can truly be called the first “modern superbike” because of its use of a four-valve cylinder head with a narrow included valve angle and wedge-shaped squish band combustion chambers — technology first used by Cosworth in its race car engines. Suzuki called its version TSCC, or “Twin Swirl Combustion Chamber.” It made the GS1100E the fastest bike on the strip when introduced in 1980, and good enough to be named Cycle World’s Superbike of the Year for three consecutive years from 1981-1983.

Though based on the earlier two-valve GS range, the E used a new cylinder head with double overhead cams and shared cam lobes, each lobe opening two valves via forked cam followers. Screw and locknut adjusters made clearance setting easy, unlike the shim-and-bucket setup found on most DOHC bikes of the era. The engine’s bottom end used the built-up crank/roller bearing design of the two-valve GS850 and 1100 (a leftover from Suzuki’s two-stroke days) which, though more costly to produce, gave benefits in reduced friction losses and added strength and durability. Fueling came by four 34mm Mikuni CVs, with the gas ignited by a transistorized electronic ignition. Drive to the five-speed transmission was by a helical gear primary, and chain to the rear wheel.

Though conventional in using steel tube cradle construction, the GS1100E frame was stronger and stiffer than most, and the box-section aluminum swingarm added to the steering rigidity. The air-assisted KYB front forks featured adjustable compression and rebound damping, and for 1982 the GSE gained fashionable anti-dive forks (Cycle World called them “largely ornamental”) by Showa. These used pressure from the front brake’s hydraulic system to close damping valves, limiting fork movement. Blow-off valves allowed for sharp road shocks. Time has passed judgment on the usefulness of such accessories, but they were all the rage in 1982. Brakes were triple discs with floating calipers.

The GS1100E consistently won period shoot-outs against the 1,047cc six-cylinder Honda CBX and Kawasaki’s GPz1100. Then for 1983, Suzuki upped the ante by increasing intake valve lift and advance while revising intake and exhaust systems for an extra three horses. Forged pistons, a stronger crank and uprated transmission components maintained the GS’ reputation for reliability; a frame-mounted bikini fairing provided improved aerodynamics. The 1983 GS1100ES was the first production motorcycle tested by Cycle World to run a standing quarter mile in the tens. This was serious stuff.

“Not the most powerful motorcycle on the market nor the fastest. What it is is the quickest,” wrote Cycle World in September 1983. The Honda CB1100F made the same power but was heavier; the GPz made more power but had a narrower power band and a grabby clutch; and the Suzuki Katana with an identical engine was lighter and more aerodynamic, but more difficult to launch. The other contender, Honda’s V65, was heavier and exhibited quirky handling. Overall, the shoot-out awards went to the GS1100ES.

The GS1100ES’ combination of consistent sub-11-second quarters, nimble yet stable handling, long-distance touring comfort, simple maintenance and bulletproof reliability contributed to the GS1100E’s position as fifth “most significant motorcycle” from the previous 35 years by Rider magazine in 1999.

The conclusion reached by motorcycle journalists in 1983 was that the GS1100ES was simply the best all-round big bike on the market. Perhaps Cycle World said it best: “The engine and frame and suspension are right. The motor is brilliant, making tons of power at every engine speed without ever seeming to work at it. The GS … doesn’t overpower its chassis … the suspension is excellent under most conditions. Taken as a whole, as a complete motorcycle, the GS works, and works well.”

1983 Kawasaki GPz1100 • 104hp @ 8,500rpm (1983)/149mph (period test) • 1,089cc air-cooled DOHC 8-valve inline four • 5-speed • Disc brakes front and rear • 578lb (wet) • 35-55mpg • Price now: $2,500-$4,500

The Kawasaki GPz1100 was the GS1100 E/ES’ most obvious competition. Though using only two valves per cylinder and essentially derived from the legendary 1973 Kawasaki Z1, Kawasaki gave it fuel injection for added pizzazz — with analog control in 1981, and fully digital with a throttle position sensor in 1982. Changes to cam timing and lift that year were claimed to boost power above 110hp at the crank, and while the Kawasaki developed more peak power than the GS, the Suzuki smoked it in the lower rev range.

The engine was rubber mounted in the frame and drove the five-speed tranny by straight-cut gears. The “DFI” digital fuel injection wasn’t perfect, though, found Cycle World, as the engine would sometimes die when the throttle was opened abruptly; their testers also experienced power surging at cruise. While FI systems are now very reliable, back in the day, Cycle World was concerned that if it failed, it was something few could “tackle at the roadside.”

Spring rates and suspension calibration changes for 1982 gave the GPz a handling advantage over the GS, with better track manners, lighter steering and more ground clearance, though the GS scored higher in comfort and stability. The big change came in 1983 with Kawasaki’s Uni-track rear suspension. And that, as they say, changed everything …

Every motorcycle niche includes a Honda, and Honda’s head-to-head competition with the 1983 GS1100ES was the CB1100F, the ultimate development of the CB750 Four of 1969. Although something of a stop-gap model while the VF1000F Interceptor was being readied for 1984, the CB1100F nevertheless boasted an impressive specification.

Incorporating technology from the Euro market CB1100R and Honda CB900F, the four-valve engine produced a claimed 108hp at the crank, and was packaged in a conventional steel tube frame with a bikini fairing, TRAC anti-dive forks, cast alloy tubeless-tire wheels and adjustable handlebars. The result was a good looking bike that not only equaled the GS and GPz in performance (top speed was better than the GS, although the GS would beat it in the all important quarter mile), but was also less expensive, coming in at $3,698 against $4,499 for the GPz and $4,350 for the GS1100ES in 1983.

The CB900F that came before the 1100 had a reputation for missing gears and also had some handling issues, both of which were corrected in the 1100. The engine was fully rubber mounted to quell buzzing. The result was a powerful, competent and comfortable mile-muncher that held up Honda’s reputation during the troubled early days of the V-4s.

Motorcycle Classics 2011

Cycle World circa 1983

"There have been signs recently that big street bikes have entered the wtm age of too much. Too much horsepower and torque for their chassis to handle. Too much attention to chopper styling, which gets in the way of function. Too much attention to different, futuristic styling, again, looks interfering with function.

We've seen motorcycles with more than enough power to run in the 10-sec. drag-strip bracket, except that power and potential is thwarted by wheelies, burnouts, lost traction and/or poor weight transfer. The rider is hampered by high handlebars/low seats/forward pegs or low handlebars/high seats/rearward pegs, all carried to the extreme, to the point of being too much.

Enter now the Suzuki GS1100ES. No one can mistake it for a cruiser. The styling is sporting, influenced by works endurance and F-1 machines, without going as far (too far, some would say) as the Katana. The GS1100ES has low handlebars, but they're mounted on the upper triple clamp, instead of being Katana-style, back-straining clip-ons. And the foot-pegs are normally positioned, not radically rear-set like the Katana's pegs.

The GS1100's half fairing mounts to a tubular framework that bolts to the motorcycle frame. There's a short windscreen, sort of a cross between a racing bubble and a touring windshield, with a slight flip at the upper edge to direct wind upward. The fairing is plastic and has a snap-on lower section on each side.

The front fender, side-panels and tailsection are plastic, too. Like the lower fairing sections, the side covers come with cast-in plastic studs, which push into rubber grommets on the frame. The seat base is plastic and the seat can be removed by opening a lock built into the tailsection, moving two levers, one on each side of the seat, and sliding the seat rearward.

The GS is pearl white with semi-metallic blue panels on the sides of the fairing, tank and side covers. The engine is painted black with polished highlights, the carburetors are black, and the exhaust system is black chrome. The swing arm is polished aluminum and the fork sliders are painted black. The cast aluminum wheels are black with pollished highlights.

GS1100 t powerful motorcycle on the market, fastest. What it is, is the quickest, thanks to an unmatched combination of seating position, suspension, weight, torque and clutch controllability. While others shoot the front wheel skyward or spin the rear tire, the Suzuki rockets forward, the rider able to fully use all 108 horsepower. This is the easiest 1100 to ride at the dragstrip, as shown by consistently good numbers. We made six passes with the GS, all between 11.07 and 10.99 sec. with terminal speeds between 120.64 and 120.96 mph. The fourth pass was the quickest, 10.99 at 120.80, the first time a standard street motorcycle tested by Cycle World has run in the 10s.

Compare those numbers to the times and speeds recorded by the Katana (11.05 sec. at 123.64 mph), the CB1100F (11.13 at 120.48), the V65 Magna (11.07 at 123.62), the GPz1100 (11.22 at 120.80).

Some of the GS1100's performance can be explained by weight. The Suzuki weighs 552 lb. with half a tank of gas, compared to the Katana's 540 lb., the CB1100F's 567 lb., the V65's 579 lb. and the GPz1100's 578 lb. The Katana has less weight than the GS1100 but is harder to launch and ride; it also is more aerodynamic, which shows up in higher terminal speed even though the 1983 Katana and GS1100ES engines are identical. The CB1100F makes the same power as the Suzukis but weighs more, resulting in a slower ET and the same terminal as the GS1100sxES. The V65 makes more power, but is wheelie-prone and nearly impossible to ride down the strip at full throttle in every gear, although brute power gives it a high terminal despite terrible aerodynamics. The GPz1100 is heavier than the GS1100 and has a narrow powerband and grabby clutch, all three factors combining for a slower ET despite a nearly identical terminal speed.

The biggest source of the Suzuki's superior rideability is the proven 72 x 66mm, 1074cc air-cooled, four-valves-per-cylinder, dohc engine, now in its fourth year of production. Like its predecessors, the 1983 engine has a cylinder head incorporating TSCC (Twin Swirl Combustion Chamber). Each pair of intake and exhaust valves is opened by a forked rocker arm, and lash is adjusted by conventional screw tappets.

Valve lift was increased for 1983, and intake valve timing was advanced by moving the cam sprocket holes. Along with larger airbox inlets and a less restrictive exhaust system, those changes boosted the 1983 engine's output to 108 bhp at 9000 rpm, up from the 1982 version's 105 bhp. Other parts were made stronger to better handle the engine's power, including forged pistons; a larger diameter alternator taper; larger rivets and springs in the forged aluminum clutch basket's backing plate; two extra drive (fiber) and one extra driven (steel) clutch plates packed into the basket to increase clutch surface area, all the plates made thinner (2.8mm to 2.0mm) to make room for the extra plates; and welds holding the pressed-together, roller-bearing crankshaft's pins in position.

The rest of the engine specifications are unchanged for 1983, including the five-speed transmission and final drive ratios and the transistorized electronic ignition. The four 34mm Mikuni CV carburetors do have slightly different jetting to work with the intake and exhaust system changes, however.

It all adds up to street performance that one rider described with the words, contemptuous ease.

This is an engine that responds instantly, rocketing the motorcycle forward anytime the twist grip is opened, without any sense of strain or work, pulling strongly from 4000 rpm and leaving stoplights quickly at anything above 1500 rpm. Frantic isn't in the GS1100's vocabulary. The GS1100's low-and-mid-range acceleration isn't as violent as that produced by the V-Four Honda V65, but then the GS doesn't have the V65's acceleration-limiting chassis quirks, either. Turn on the gas at 4000 rpm and traffic disappears, effortlessly.

The engine is smoothest just below 4000 rpm, a tad above 60 mph in terms of road speed, but even at its worst the vibration produced by the GS is less than that of a GPz1100 or any of the rigidly-mounted V-Twins.

Like anything created by humans, the GS isn't perfect. Too much throttle below 2000 rpm produces a hint of detonation even on the best available pump gasoline. And the carburetion, while better than it was a few years ago, retains just a hint of off-idle leanness and low-rpm, low-road-speed surge in tight traffic.

The Kayaba forks have 37mm stanchion tubes and several adjustments, including three positions of spring preload, four positions of rebound damping and the usual linked air pressure fittings. The forks feature Suzuki's brake-activated anti-dive, in which brake line pressure closes a spring-loaded plunger valve, which in turn re-routes fork oil through smaller compression damping orifices to reduce dive under braking.

That's in theory. In practice, the anti-dive system does little more than subtract from the feel and progressiveness of the front brakes and makes bleeding the front brake system more difficult.

We tried disconnecting the anti-dive on a staffer's personal GS1100 and found that brake feel and control were improved, with no increase in fork dive.

The rear suspension consists of an aluminum swing arm on needle roller bearings and two Kayaba shocks with adjustable preload and rebound damping. The shocks, like the forks, are unchanged from 1982, and the same staffer-owned GS1100 put in 10 hours of hard racing before needing new shocks due to fluid deterioration.

While the GS1100 is proven track-worthy with the suspension dialed up (front, #2 preload, #4 rebound, 16 psi; rear #4 rebound, #2 preload) for a 145-lb. pilot, the suspension remains taut, even at minimum settings, for touring use. Three years ago we would have described the GS1100's suspension as plush for highway use. But this is 1983, and state-of-the-art has changed with the competition. The GS doesn't have the available-at-the-turn-of-a-dial cushy ride of the latest GS750 or the V65, but then again, the stock GS1100's suspension stands up better to mile-after-mile of hard charging on twisty pavement.

The GS has the same brakes it started with in 1980. The brakes work, the GS stops, taking 32 ft. from 30 mph and 118 ft. from 60 mph. But the brakes feel mushy at the lever and don't give the rider much feedback. The calipers have single pistons and carry pads with moderate sintered metal content. The 10.8-in. stainless steel discs are not compatible with all aftermarket brake pads, as we found out when a staffer tried high-metal-content aftermarket pads in his GS1100—the discs were badly scored and blued in less than 25 mi. of hard riding. The bike didn't stop as well as it did with stock pads, either.

The Suzuki is stable when run hard, as on the racetrack, and can win box stock and modified stock club races as delivered off the showroom floor. But once again the GS design's age shows in the face of rapidly advancing competitive technology. The GS trades agility for its stability at speed, and, ridden after jumping off a CB1100F, seems to have heavy steering. Its cornering clearance hasn't kept pace with the latest GPz1100 and the CB1100F, either, dragging the footpegs and stands, then the sidestand bracket and exhaust heat shields and alternator cover when the others are just skimming the pegs. The Suzuki was first with the 17-in. rear wheel now seen on the other 1100s, and that size tire has been the object of serious development work by aftermarket high-performance tire companies. Which is good, because the Bridgestone L303 and G506 tires, introduced with the GS1100 in 1980, are out-of-date. We tried disconnecting the anti-dive on a staffer's personal GS1100 and found that brake feel and control were improved, with no increase in fork dive.

The rear suspension consists of an aluminum swing arm on needle roller bearings and two Kayaba shocks with adjustable preload and rebound damping. The shocks, like the forks, are unchanged from 1982, and the same staffer-owned GS1100 put in 10 hours of hard racing before needing new shocks due to fluid deterioration.

While the GS1100 is proven track-worthy with the suspension dialed up (front, #2 preload, #4 rebound, 16 psi; rear #4 rebound, #2 preload) for a 145-lb. pilot, the suspension remains taut, even at minimum settings, for touring use. Three years ago we would have described the GS1100's suspension as plush for highway use. But this is 1983, and state-of-the-art has changed with the competition. The GS doesn't have the available-at-the-turn-of-a-dial cushy ride of the latest GS750 or the V65, but then again, the stock GS1100's suspension stands up better to mile-after-mile of hard charging on twisty pavement.

The GS has the same brakes it started with in 1980. The brakes work, the GS stops, taking 32 ft. from 30 mph and 118 ft. from 60 mph. But the brakes feel mushy at the lever and don't give the rider much feedback. The calipers have single pistons and carry pads with moderate sintered metal content. The 10.8-in. stainless steel discs are not compatible with all aftermarket brake pads, as we found out when a staffer tried high-metal-content aftermarket pads in his GS1100—the discs were badly scored and blued in less than 25 mi. of hard riding. The bike didn't stop as well as it did with stock pads, either.

The Suzuki is stable when run hard, as on the racetrack, and can win box stock and modified stock club races as delivered off the showroom floor. But once again the GS design's age shows in the face of rapidly advancing competitive technology. The GS trades agility for its stability at speed, and, ridden after jumping off a CB1100F, seems to have heavy steering. Its cornering clearance hasn't kept pace with the latest GPz1100 and the CB1100F, either, dragging the footpegs and stands, then the sidestand bracket and exhaust heat shields and alternator cover when the others are just skimming the pegs. The Suzuki was first with the 17-in. rear wheel now seen on the other 1100s, and that size tire has been the object of serious development work by aftermarket high-performance tire companies. Which is good, because the Bridgestone L303 and G506 tires, introduced with the GS1100 in 1980, are out-of-date.

But the really big things, the engine and frame and suspension, are right. The motor is brilliant, making tons of power at every engine speed without ever seeming to work at it. The GS accelerates hard without strain, and doesn't overpower its chassis. The suspension adjustments are effective, and while taut on repetitive highway bumps, the suspension is excellent under most conditions, in the city, up the canyons, around a racetrack.

Taken as a whole, as a complete motorcycle, the GS works, and works well."

Source Cycle World 1983

Wes Cooley Suzuki GS1100 tribute by Fabian Mondaca

I got righteously shocked recently by an e-mail full of these pictures and the story behind them by Fabian Mondaca, a fellow from around Halifax out east in Nova Scotia, Canada. I think.

This one on the right was his starting point, poor bugger, but you can see he turned a ho-hum Suzuki into a ummm...BAMF!

It's complicated.

Says Fabian...

"The mother of superbikes in 1980, great example of racing history. This is a replica of the bikes Wes Cooley rode that brought Suzuki to the winner’s circle many years ago. This bike was built by Fabian M. from BAMF Racing.

BAMF stands for Bad Ass Mother Fucker... lol. One of my early projects was a gs 750 featured (on this) site and I decided to keep the tradition of BAMF with a racing edition on my Wes Cooley build.

This one is a GS1100E. It's an 1100cc engine rated at 105 horsepower @ 8700 rpm, and 67.6 lb-ft of torque @ 6500 rpm from the factory. This motorcycle was freshened up top to bottom. Rebuild Engine job, new rings, new gaskets, new o-rings, new valve seals.

The engine is probably one of the tightest sounding engines that I have heard. Everything specked well within tolerances. This bike sounds and looks just like it is, VERY FAST!!!

The carburetors were tore completely down and every single piece was ultrasonically cleaned. They were then re-assembled, re-jetted and synched. Every nut and bolt on this motorcycle was thoroughly cleaned, inspected. Even thought this bike looks factory, there are many hours of fabrication to achieve this look.

The headlight, rear cowl, and seat was retrofitted to a single-seater for faster and better handling. Lightweight aluminum swingarm helps lighten up the bike significantly. The seat was transformed to replicate the original Suzuki race team seats. Rear LED tail light signals. Front and rear brake systems were completely torn apart and rebuilt. Bike has excellent braking power with dual disk up front and single disk in the rear. Has a brand new O-ring chain. All wheel and neck bearings were inspected, re-greased, and re-installed. BRAND NEW tires front and rear. ELECTRONIC ignition. Anyway, too many features to list.

This classic was found in a remote location in the eastern shores of Nova Scotia, Canada and restored in Halifax. After a year long restoration and complete rebuild here is the final product."

Fabian Mondaca

Fabian is still refining the Suzuki and promises better pics as the build progresses. Stay tuned for updates...and thanks to F. Mondaca!

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