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Unread 04-30-2013, 07:08 AM
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Default The Ol' Trusty - 1990 Suzuki DR350

I was offered a 1990 DR 350 to use for a weekend for the Cal Poly Penguins Annual Enduro / Dual Sport Ride. I had read about these bikes for years but never was able to afford one because of my off-road truck habit and streetbike that I can't live without. Now that I'm riding dirt more often I was able to find me a KTM400 that I am working on but in the meantime I can borrow a friends DR350 when I need a dual sport. I just thought I would put some thoughts down in case someone needed some help finding the perfect dual sport bike or was interested in buying one for themselves. You can find these bikes all over the place for sale for pretty cheap. If you found a good one buy it. It's worth it.

About the bike I borrowed: completely stock with worn out knobbies.. still the little bike that could did not miss a beat. The DR350 starts very easily with the decompression lever and a kick. The extremely tractable and tame 350 engine allows any tire to grip the surface well regardless of the condition it's in. My friend considers the knobby tire worn out but I didn't even notice climbing sandy inclines, slippery hard dirt roads and winding around trees in the low altitude hills of California. With the stock configuration suspension (never serviced on original oil!), stock- stealth exhaust and muffler, stock gearing and stock rubber mounted the pegs the bike was an absolute pillow to float down the trails on or ride the hwy out to the riding spots. The transmission was perfect with a tractor style 1st gear and a freeway capable 6th gear that allows the bike to cruise at 70-75 quietly if you needed to kick it up on the way home. The tough steel kickstand and steel luggage rack on the back really seem like overkill for a dirt bike but the more you use it the more you realize how much thought they put into the engineering of this cycle. The kick stand sits the the bike on a steep angle to the left when used. This is great for parking the bike in the dirt as you don't have to look for a spot to part that is flat. You can kick the leg out and park it on a left falling slope or an extreme right falling slope. I found I was able to park it anywhere unlike a modern bike that hold the bike more upright. You get used to this. And then the luggage rack is super solid. Upon inspection I found rubber grommets holding the rear plastic fender in place around the steel rack. The rack is solid but the rear fender is more "free floating" on the rubber fasteners and has kept the original plastic fender from warping or cracking for many years still. Very well thought out. These bikes last forever! The engine was amazing too.
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Unread 04-30-2013, 08:45 AM
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Here are a couple links. DR350 model history and a write-up by Motorcycle USA.

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Unread 11-20-2013, 08:56 AM
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DR350 for sale! This is probably the best DR I've seen for sale in a long long time. Hardly any miles on it and in great shape - AND it doesn't need to be worked on to make running. A lot of them haven't been used to they need work when you find them!

DR350 for sale on the Bay Area Riders Forum. An awesome motorcycle that you can ride cross country on - and also his the Baja 1000 no kidding. All your friends will be jealous of how comfortable the DR is because all the pegs and handlebars and everything are rubber mounted for vibration. Great motorcycle. I wouldn't mind having one...
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