What started as an opportunity to help a friend sell his motorcycle, turned into a great learning experience for me.

A bit of back story on our project SV- I first acquired the bike from a guy selling it, and an ’04 Yamaha R6 track bike retrofitted for street again, back in 2013. Neither bike was running, and he just wanted them gone, with no room in his garage, no margin in his schedule, to give them the TLC they needed. I got them both for crazy-cheap, and soon had the R6 running then sold. The SV needed the carbs gone through, a tank scouring and resealing, a new fuel filter, a battery and plugs, and a rebuilt title, having been a salvage title bike in South Carolina.

After completing the SV650s, I sold it to a young friend I knew at church, and he’s enjoyed it for many miles these years since.

My young friend took a lucrative job offer as a flight instructor and assistant professor at a small college in east Texas, but needed to report quickly, so he asked if I could fix some issues it was having, and then get it sold for him. I had enjoyed getting it road-ready the first time, so gladly obliged. I’m also partial to SVs in general, and glad Suzuki has reintroduced them into their model line (see our eval article- https://roaddirt.tv/ride-naked/).

What was thought to be an electrical/charging problem had resulted in a battery replacement on the part of my friend Noah. When that didn’t fix the issue of the bike shutting off after about 30 minutes, it was evident that the battery wasn’t being recharged in the system. I’m a nominal “shade tree mechanic” at best, and electrical problems absolutely baffle me. Yet after some online searches, I took a shot at pulling the alternator rotor magnet and the rectifier/regulator to have them tested by my friends at Rockdale Cycles in Conyers, Georgia. What transpired was a great education for me!

So after getting the charging system all reassembled (not nearly as intimidating as I thought), I took to eBay and found a replacement front left fairing, to replace the original which had been crunched up when Noah had a low speed lowside on it. Found a decent (albeit imperfect) replacement fairing, and completed the restoration- at least enough to get it ready to sell.

And with that, our first Road Dirt project bike is complete! Definitely not a show bike, not a complete rebuild from the ground up, but for a (very) amateur mechanic, I’m satisfied. I learned much, enjoyed having my old bike back in the shop, and getting it running again.

Yes, I’ve taken a few spins on it, up and down a few local country roads, wound it up through the gears a bit, just to test everything, mind you. Strictly business, of course (wink).



  1. Phil

    You’re making me want another SV Rob!

    • Rob Brooks

      I love them, Phil! Such a great do-everything bike. And they sound freakin’ awesome when “open-throated” with aftermarket pipes.


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