Our 1982 Suzuki FA50 is a pretty fun little machine. It turns heads and is a great little around-town runabout, perfect for parts store runs and other short errands. However, the age of our bike is showing. Our top speed is a paltry 25 MPH. This may have been fine in 1982 but in 2020, with inattentive SUV drivers texting and driving, we need more power to keep ourselves out of trouble. Oddly enough, more power would not have saved us from this collision (though the upgraded brakes and tires we installed many years ago allowed us to stop enough from getting badly hurt). A bit more oomph will allow us to ride to different parts of town (up till now, we’ve dared not go anywhere that has a speed limit over 30).
Fortunately, the FA50 has become somewhat popular in the last few years and there are some go-fast goodies we can buy to bump up our power output. There are a few other tricks we can apply to improve power and speed in both the engine and transmission. So we decided to do a full top to bottom rebuild on our FA50’s 40 year old engine to give us enough horsepower to handle this modern world.