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RotaNate

Suzi FA50

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Havnt done one of these in a long time and with summer coming up I’ve been seeing a lot of builds I follow pop up with updates as they edge closer to completion. This got me to thinking...I’ve been tinkering with something trying to get it ready for summer, why aren’t I documenting it! So here I am :)

This is my 197something Suzuki FA50 

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Bit of history on how I ended up with her...

I always had the mentality of ‘scooters are for fags, why don’t they get a real bike!’ But after being taken out on my first ‘scooter mish’ with a few of the lads, that perception all changed! It was a blast! Cheap to run (I think I spent $7 on petrol for the whole night), no WOFs to worry about and cheap registration. Not to mention you can practically go anywhere on them. From there I was hooked. I owned a couple of newer scooters I bought off mates (it’s how I have most the things I have...cheers boys!) and now we get to here.

i was in the process of buying the bad boy pictured below...A Suzuki SJ50QT

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I hadn’t yet payed for it when the FA50 popped up for sale from the brother in law and at a price I couldn’t resist! Loving almost anything pre 80’s I had to have it!

i had a chat to my mate I was buying the SJ50 off and we ended up coming to an agreement. He didn’t want the hastle of selling so said if I sold it over the price I was going to buy it off him for I could keep the profit for my self :-)

So I sold the SJ50 for $150 more than I bought it for from my friend and that was just over what I needed to pay for the FA50. So esstianlly through a few GC’s I pretty much got the FA for free! :badgrin:

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So a bit of history on the old moped....

My brother in law owns a Honda Chaly and wanted to get me on something old school. He was chatting with someone he worked with about old mopeds and he said he had a FA50 and an old FZ motor lying around he wanted to get rid of. So one of the boys got the FZ motor for his FZ & I put my hand up for the FA.

I had no idea what condition it would be in or even if it would run because all I knew about it was that it had been sat somewhere for years without being touched.

When we got possession of it we all thought the same thing. Have we bitten off more than we can chew. The first thing we looked at was the rust on the frame. But on closer inspection it wasn’t actually that bad. The tyres were cracked and flat and it looked like there were a lot of parts missing. It came with a big box of random bike parts which really helped though!

So we got stuck in and did the first things that every knowledable moped owner does when they buy a moped that doesn’t run....Fresh petrol, new spark plug, carb clean!

But while taking these parts off we noticed most of the loom had been cut up! After a bit of googling we whipped up a rough ‘loom’ with just the essentials needed and gave her a few kicks! Nothing! But she was trying to splutter into life. So with a bit of ‘start you c***’ she fired up, ran & died again! A few more kicks and after years of crap started to burn away we got her to idle and I even half rode it up to my local service station to pump the tyres up lol Sucess! They went up and stayed up! :-) so I rolled her home and that was that for the first night. Getting a taste of what it would like to be to ride I was straight onto google and build ideas started flooding in!

Pic below of the next day...

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Now she was breathing fire and 2 stroke smoke it was time for the tidy up....

First on the list was the wiring!

Ive always had a soft spot for messing around with wiring so I was looking forward to this part. I pulled out the loom (they run through the frame on these bad boys) I decided the loom was un salvageable, so plan B was to search through the box of parts that came with the bike. I found a quite complete, quite untouched FZ50 loom in and after a bit of research I found out that the FZ & FA bikes are practically the same! So I binned the FA loom and ran the FZ loom through the frame. A few of the wire colours didn’t seem to match but after the good old process of elimination, got the FZ loom running the FA motor! :-D

I wasn’t happy with all the wiring being kept behind the headlight as it just seemed messy and pointless to me, so I went back to the drawing board.

I had an idea! I knew this build was always going to escalate from a resto build to something a bit more fun, no matter how much I tell myself ‘build it to be reliable and comfy to ride’, so I did away with the oil tank which shares half the space under the seat with the fuel tank. With all that space under the seat I decided that this space would now be the new place my wiring/battery/CDI would now hang out. Another positive of having the wiring all under here is that it makes everything super close to where the stator wiring comes out. So I pulled the loom back out of the frame and took it to Jenny Craig.

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I traced everything wire by wire and along with my wiring diagram one of the helpful chaps from Moped NZ supplied me, I managed to get rid/shorten a lot of wiring to the point that now the only wires that run through my frame are to the coil (which hangs just in front of the motor), brake light switch and the headlight bulb. This made installing the loom a hell of a lot quick and easier to do!

I even re used the old hole where the oil tank gauge used to show as my new ignition barrel mounting location which gives it that bit of a personal touch and also tidies up the old handle bars too :wink: (see next post as only have 3MB of upload, which only allows 1 pic per post??)

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Yeaaaah buddy. FA50 life. If you head to something like imgur.com and upload your photos, you can add photos using a link from there. Click ‘insert other media’ and then ‘insert image from url’

 

Cant wait for more FA skids. Keep it up. 

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I got my FA to around 64km/h after much fettling. It was a screamer right up to when it seized on a scooter run... :-D

 

They are a fun wee bike but don't expect too much out of them...

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25 minutes ago, Lord Gruntfuttock said:

I got my FA to around 64km/h after much fettling. It was a screamer right up to when it seized on a scooter run... :-D

 

They are a fun wee bike but don't expect too much out of them...

I’d be happy with 60km/h to be honest haha

i don’t expect much from it (unless I do a motor swap, which I will probably will end up doing lol)

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Forgot to add the aftermath of my victory burnout that I did when I finally got her running properly! :badgrin:

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When I had got it running at idle it wouldn’t rev up very well/wouldn’t get the power to drive itself forward. After many laps of taking the carb off and cleaning it out, taking the exhaust off and trying to burn it out and whipping the plug out and cleaning it I figured it wasn’t any of those. Then a mate was over and we took the rectifier out and she purred up and took me round the block! (Hence the picture above :-D I got a bit excited haha)

Next up is to make the cover for all my wiring. She’s a bit of a birds nest under there!

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I have an old alloy air box that I got off the brother in law from an unfinished project he had. I’m quite a ‘throw it out’ kinda guy but I’m really glad I kept this!

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I made a template from a bit of cardboard and it juuuuust fits on the box! I did make the template a bit bigger though so I have a bit of meat to hopefully shape that perfect fit. I also started cutting it out with my mild steel cutting disc but felt sketchy so I stopped haha will get an alloy one tomorrow on my way home from work. I will hopefully get an air filter sorted tomorrow as well because I think I will need it for the Moped NZ raglan ride this weekend. I don’t think she would last very long like this....

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Plans are, once she survives the Raglan ride, will  be to strip her down again and get her looking spify! This will include paint job and just a cosmetic tidy up of the motor/gearbox. While that’s all going down I will try get to the bottom of a lighting circuit issue I have but for now I will be using this....:badgrin:

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Nooooo! Don’t paint it!

looks so good with yellow patina! Plus I’ve never seen a yellow one before. My doing would be cut and polish it and wax or flat clear it to preserve

 

 

or I’ll swap you a black frame for your yellow one and you can paint that one? Haha

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Also, what’s the lighting circuit issue?

both of my FA50s barely have enough go to run the lights and lights get brighter with revs. Are super dim at idle

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I second the non painting. Please m8. Plzzz. 

 

Also. I have a filter that will fit onto that elbow I can bring for the ride bro. 

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1 hour ago, Shakotom said:

Nooooo! Don’t paint it!

looks so good with yellow patina! Plus I’ve never seen a yellow one before. My doing would be cut and polish it and wax or flat clear it to preserve

 

 

or I’ll swap you a black frame for your yellow one and you can paint that one? Haha

I don’t think I will paint it now you said the yellow ones aren’t around that much so thanks for the peer pressure :-D

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1 hour ago, Shakotom said:

Also, what’s the lighting circuit issue?

both of my FA50s barely have enough go to run the lights and lights get brighter with revs. Are super dim at idle

It could just be that then? It’s my first 6v Moped so was thinking there wasn’t enough juice to power them up properly

1 hour ago, MopedNZ said:

I second the non painting. Please m8. Plzzz. 

 

Also. I have a filter that will fit onto that elbow I can bring for the ride bro. 

Yeah man if you can bring that filter as a back up that would be sweet! I’m going to try source one tomorrow so hopefully they have one in stock

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A decent battery should help your lights at low rpm.

/I don't see one among your underseat wiring, ignore me if you've got one.

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10 minutes ago, Raizer said:

A decent battery should help your lights at low rpm.

/I don't see one among your underseat wiring, ignore me if you've got one.

There is one it’s just charging at the moment. In the excitement of the first ride I left the light key on and ran it flat (a brand new battery! :()

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So, was just chilling at work and this showed up!

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I totally forgot I had ordered it! It is just a cheapie from trademe (I think it was about $30 including shipping).

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Of coarse I had to fit it as soon as I got home, so I chucked it in the vice and began chopping :-D

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The sparks went flying!! :badgrin:

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Once I got it cut where I wanted I mocked it up and luckily the bracket for the silencer lined up nicely with a bracket on the rear frame. I mounted it up and marked where I would cut the old muffler off and the factory exhaust got the chop as well

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With a bit of modification I got it lined up where I wanted then then tacked it up

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and with a few adjustments I welded her up and here’s the final product...

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it got a bit late to start her up so fingers crossed she will fire up but I have no doubt so tuning will be needed. 

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Sweet exhaust! But I hope you realise the second the suspension flexes you’ll snap the exhaust mount off of the carrier or tear the studs out of the exhaust

 

engine pivots seperatly to the frame. I’d look at making a mount off the pipe that mounts back to the motor as per shit drawing.

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and then possibly using a spring or something to tension exhaust back to frame in place of your current mount to save the exhaust viabrating its self loose as the expansion chamber on my FA50 did the whole ride at raglan on the weekend

 

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I used one of those exhausts on my old one, I ditched the can and just had an internal stinger, it was nice and solid but the license plate would always come loose

pic%20016a.jpg

 

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