Exciting developments at Overland Junction and a hectic workload with client projects combined to limit my riding opportunities over the last few weeks, but there’s still been time to do a little more work on the DR650.

Planning ahead to when I can replace the miserly stock fuel tank with an Acerbis 6.6 gallon version (the low mileage range with the current tank is probably the bike’s biggest weakness), I’ve re-positioned the front turn signals – lifting them up away from where the leading edge of the Acerbis tank will be by flipping the mounts 180 degrees. Thanks to Jonathan M. Cates Jr and others on the DR650 Facebook Group for this suggestion.

Before he flew back to the UK, Sam Manicom gave me a mini air compressor to try out. I’ve hard-wired that to the bike’s battery, with a connector easily accessible under the right-hand fairing. It’s a really useful tool and I’m looking forward to seeing the BestRest CyclePump at HU California in September so I can make a comparison.

Tinkering aside, the main things I’ve been focusing on are luggage and ergonomics.

Dirtsack Gypsy Hybrid Tail Bag

Re-capping on the luggage setup so far (see Update #2), the DR650 has a Jesse Luggage plate on which the Wolfman Luggage Wolf Tail is a perfect fit. I continue to be impressed by the Wolf Tail and it’s likely to remain my main bag day-to-day and for short trips. Then at the front end there’s the Giant Loop Zigzag handlebar bag, which is great for carrying smaller items you want easily to hand. At some point I’d like to add the Giant Loop Fender and Ochoco Tail bags too.

A lot more capacity is needed for longer rides though, especially those where camping gear needs carrying, and since the DR650 doesn’t have pannier racks yet, some sort of the tail bag is the way to go. Given that Overland Junction has just become the US distributor for Dirtsack luggage, I’ve naturally been keen to test out the 60 liter Dirtsack Gypsy hybrid tail bag.

After removing the Jesse Luggage plate, the Dirtsack Gypsy sits very comfortably over the mount and I’ve no doubt it would fit just as well if the mount was absent. The right-hand ‘leg’ of the bag rests on the exhaust’s heat shield, but that’s what the shield is for and I haven’t had any problems with it. The photo below shows one of my earlier experiments in bag positioning and using the supplied securing straps. You can see that it needs moving further back, and I’ve since found a better strap placement combination that enables that to happen.

Dirtsack Gypsy hybrid tail bag

The Dirtsack Gypsy hybrid tail bag on the DR650 – needs positioning further back on the Jesse mount.

Pivot Pegz

For all its virtues, the DR650 isn’t endowed with generously proportioned foot pegs and I’ve been finding the stock ones soon become uncomfortable after 50 miles or so.

The Mark 3 Pivot Pegz are the solution I’ve gone for and I’m delighted with the difference they make. At 60mm wide they provide the largest foot platform of any pegs on the market and their forward and aft pivot action is designed for better control and improved riding comfort.

Pivot Pegz

The 60mm-wide Pivot Pegz (right) give a much better foot platform than the stock Suzuki pegs.

Rox Speed FX 2″ Pivoting Bar Risers

I’ve really been looking forward to getting bar risers fitted, because they have such a positive impact on riding position (both seated and standing) for taller riders.

There are lots of bar riser options available, but the pivoting variety made by Rox Speed FX caught my attention recently when I helped the Adventure Bike Shop produce a video about fitting them to a Liquid Cooled BMW R1200GS.

I installed the 2″ Rox risers yesterday afternoon and can’t wait to give them a proper test.

Rox Speed FX 2" Pivoting Bar Risers

Before and after…

Rox Speed FX 2" Pivoting Bar Risers

Rox Speed FX 2" Pivoting Bar Risers


Iain Harper