Suzuki GSX-R1100J top-end overhaul

By 13th March 2013 Rare Groove, Suzuki

This beautiful old GSX-R11 Slabby came in because it was running poorly and had no go in it. So we strapped it on the Dyno and ran it up and indeed, it was not good – there was something obviously amiss. We started with the carbs, and found a broken float, which we fixed and made some jetting changes while we were in there. But this wasn’t the real problem, the engine was still weak. So a leak-down test was next; and it was bad. All of the exhaust ports were leaking air…

We think in its life the valve clearances hadn’t been adjusted regularly, allowing the exhaust valves to stay open and build up a layer of carbon, so when they closed they weren’t making full contact and dissipating heat, leading to pitting. At this point the head had to come off so we could re-seat the valves and get the compression back.

Tell you something though. We had a little ride out on it to make sure it felt good out in the road and do you know what? This is a bike you can actually ride. Great engine plus a 5-speed gearbox with good spread of ratios. In fact you can just leave it in 5th. Lovely.

We like this bike. The engine's making good compression now it's sorted, and it rides like a dream...

We like this bike. The engine’s making good compression now it’s sorted, and it rides like a dream…