Picked up a DRZ400s


Expedition Leader

Picked up a 2006 DRZ400s. Has about 100 miles on the fresh rebuild. Since it was being rebuilt the PO decided to do a big bore/hotcams mod to make it a 440. I don't have that much time on a stock DRZ400s so I can't compare them all that much but it seems to definitely have a little boost to it. Has brand new Kenda Tires. LED conversions on the lights.

First thing I'm going to do is take it to a local shop right down the street from me for an inspection. The guy I bought it from is definitely a garage mechanic, knew what he was talking about but still want a professional opinion.

After his assessment I will do the following upgrades:

Full exhaust. Most likely FMF.
Clarke gas tank- Not sure on this one but definitely need a new gas tank. Don't like the look of the huge 4 gallon ones. Not even sure if the Clarke is worth it to only add about half a gallon.
Skid Plates?
Once I get the basics to make it better off road I will prob do some unnecessary mods like a new digital gauge and some bark buster/hand guards/whatever, lights, etc, etc.

Thoughts/ opinions?

then plan to ride the heck out of it!!!


Congratulations on the new to you DRZ. I bought a KLX 400 (slightly faster since it is Kawasaki green) and I am very impressed with it. I tend to leave drive trains alone. I have the opinion that if it works, leave it be. Do you need the upgraded exhaust due to the engine mods? I would focus on protection and comfort first.

I think that skid plate and hand guards are important additions. I also have the Clarke 3.9 tank and would not want anything smaller. Since I am taller than most, I also added lowered pegs and a taller, more comfortable seat. I am not a good rider and my bikes spend a fair amount of time laying in the dirt and (knock on wood) they have not had any real damage so far due to the additions. I also added a rear rack and side guards to protect some of the plastics. With that, I can also do some overnight trips though I tend to lean more towards the KLR for those.

Well I am hoping you get many great hours of riding on your new bike.


Expedition Leader
Thanks for the reply!

I was also looking for a KLX400 but the DRZ feel in my lad and I had to get it. SUPER clean and a good price so I couldn't pass it up.

I'm not sure if the exhaust is needed with the engine mods but since the engine was bored to a 440 I assume air will need to get out faster. Plus I dislike the look of the stock exhaust....maybe Clutch can tune in this topic...

I am used to an uncomfortable seat from the CRF I used to have...maybe after some time I will upgrade my seat if I end up doing longer distance.

Skid Plates are a must!

If I feel the need for a rack on the back then I will definitely get one. I see myself getting one, just not sure when.

Thanks for the feedback!


Congrats on the DRZ. I love those bikes, I've had 3 of them.

I never felt a need for a larger tank due to getting stuck somewhere, only for convince. Keep in mind, the larger tank makes the bike more top heavy which isn't too fun in sand. This factor depends on the rider's size, wright, strength, age..etc.

Skids are certainly a good thing if you're doing any bouncing around off pavement. The rear brake guard may also be a consideration for you.

Last thing, thumpertalk forums is a cornucopia of information on this topic if you're interested in poking around for ideas and build threads there.


I would definitely recommend radiator guards and case savers. i assume the carb has already been jetted for the mods. The DRZ seat was by far the worst seat I have ridden. A seatconcepts or renazco would be one of the first things I would do.


Expedition Leader
Thanks for the info guys!

Radiator guards are being shipped and thumpertalk is the next forum I hit after EP!


Nice bike. Good plan.

I picked up a DRZ last year and did a few mods: Seat Concepts saddle. MT21s. Big chinese foot pegs. Bash plate. Engine case protection. Renthal Bars. Acerbis handgaurds. KTM folding mirrors. Yosh header and exhaust. JD jet kit w/3x3 mod. Radiator gaurds. DirtRacks luggage rack for Pelicans I've had on two other bikes. Bajaworx Windscreen.

I was able to get most of this stuff second-hand. In addition to Thumpertalk, these guys have some cool DRZ goodies: http://www.procycle.us/bikepages/drz400.html

Which mods were critical for me? Jet kit transformed throttle response. Seat is mandatory IMO. Factory bars didn't fit me, so Renthals were swapped right away. Bash plate seems to be popular too, but I hate the extra engine noise. I'm debating about getting a bigger tank or just throwing a gallon fuel pack on the rear rack . . .

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Expedition Leader
Don't forget to do a 3x3 mod if you haven't already done so. Definitely get case savers and do the upgrades reccomended on Thumpertalk including the "free power" mod; I also did the batery upgrade where you cut the back of the battery box and install a fatter battery- it makes a big difference in the winter. A Seat Concepts seat will make riding a lot more comfortable and won't break the bank; mine came with a Corbin which I hated for several reasons but primarily because gel saddles get hotter than hell in the southern summers. Wider pegs will make off-road riding more comfortable and a steering stabilizer is also helpful.


Expedition Leader
Awesome thanks for the tips!

I rode around town for a good hour yesterday and finally understood all the complaints regarding the seat. Just moved that to the top of the list.

Also added to the list are acerbis handguards..contemplating on getting the oens with the LED lights on them. Where I live is a very densly populated area and full of idiots. I ride around with my brights on regardless of time of day so if I had some bright lights on my handlebars then that would make me even more visible.

I'm going to look into the 3x3 mod. I do believe, however, that the PO did the 3x3 mod. Will need to check on that.

Going on a little vaca next week so Bike is on the back burner for a while but once I get home I'll really kick it into gear.

Thanks again for the compliments and input!



Expedition Leader
Going on my first off road trail ride this weekend. I will be base camping from my truck but hope to be able to do an overnight trip in the future where I only carry the bare essentials and don't have a truck as base camp.


Enjoy your trip

Whether bike packing or in a truck, just getting out is great. Have a good time and let us know how it went. One thing nice about the truck is having firewood and a cooler for those nice "cold ones" after the ride.


Expedition Leader
You know, I was so focused on being a cool, guy who can pack his whole camp in a baclpack that I didnt even think about the beer and firewood!



Expedition Leader
Did another trip on Wednesday. Went to McCain valley East of San Diego to test my skills... it ended up being way more than I intended. I was expecting some single track trails and high speed but it was everything. We were bouncing up and over big boulders, tight single track lanes with trees and cacti on both sides, big sandy hill climbs with a rock you had to navigate around at the top and 3 foot deep whoop sections. Very challenging for me but it was such a blast.

However, I did take my first good spill. I slowed into a tight corner and accelerated out and somehow got tangled up in some trees and rocks and I flew over my handle bars and landed right on my head. I remember landing on my head and thinking: "please please bike dont land on me" Lucky for me it didnt. Bike took a good beating also, bent handlebars, broken brake lever and everything is all out of place now. Going to spend the weekend getting new parts and fixing everything then I should be good to go. As for me, I have taken a few days to recover. My Jaw, neck and back are very sore from landing on my head...go figure. Stoked to go out again. I know my limits and know how far I can push it so I am itching to get out.

And, worst of all, I was too excited to start riding that I forgot to put on my GoPro so I have 0 evidence of the crash. Other than my broken bike and scarred (brand new) helmet.