Joe Appel is one of Super Streetbike's most prolific photographers, and having shot dozens of bikes for us over the past year, he's also become something of an expert on the subject of custom motorcycles. So when Appel sent us photos of Jerrod Huey's 1992 Suzuki GSX-R1100 and described it as "the cleanest motorcycle he's ever seen," we knew he had something.
Huey bought the bike for $3100 two years ago on eBay. The Gixxer was completely stock with 12,000 miles on the odometer, and Huey put just two more miles on it before he stripped it down to the bare frame and went to work detailing his beast. Huey tells us he had no hesitation about tearing into an unmolested classic sportbike. "This is the bike I always wanted, and I had been looking for one for years. Every time I'd see one for sale it'd be gone before I got there, or else just trashed. When I finally got this one I knew I'd be keeping it, so I wanted to build it up just like I wanted it."
Step one was adding plenty of shine-the frame, swingarm, engine covers, bar ends, custom-engraved triple clamp and other miscellaneous bits were boxed up and sent to Classic Components in Santa Ana, California, for a chrome dip. While Classic was at work with the heavy metal, Huey delivered the plastics to his friend Mike Padfield at Padfield's Auto Body in Kokomo, Indiana, who stripped off a decade's worth of wax and grime and sealed the original decals under three coats of clear, giving the bike a lustrous, still-wet look. Padfield also color-matched the Gixxer's pearl-white paint on the hugger fender (which was originally black). To add a bit more color to the undercarriage, Huey dialed up the folks at Hoosier PowderCoating in Indianapolis and had them apply a coat of raspberry to the chromed brake calipers and rear sprocket, while the rotor edges and front fairing stay got a coat of white. Hoosier also did the rear shock spring in bright orange, and a layer of gold anodizing on the front fork legs rounds out the color changes on this big Gixxer. Appearance is only the beginning, though; the motor was also built to the hilt by dragracing heavyweights Schnitz Racing. The '92 1100 was the last year to feature the 1127cc oil-cooled engine (it switched to liquid-cooling in '93), one of the most proven and popular dragracing motors ever.
With the goal of keeping things both reliable and streetable, the formidable Schnitz crew threw every trick it knew at Huey's bike, boring the motor and installing larger pistons to raise displacement to 1216cc, milling and flowing the head and installing larger intake and exhaust valves and racing cams. Finished off with a set of 36mm flat-slide carburetors and a stainless steel Micron full exhaust system, Huey's bike now makes a healthy 148 rear-wheel horsepower and 86 foot-pounds of torque. Geared up three teeth at the rear sprocket, Huey says his old-school Gixxer easily walks a friend's Hayabusa in roll-ons, no matter what gear. "That's just so much fun," Huey says, "getting 'em on the street on such an old bike!"
Huey invested almost a year and more than $10,000 building his dream Gixxer, and he doesn't regret any of it. "It's such a fun bike, so much fun to ride," he says. "The flat-slides clap up a storm when it's turning over, but once it starts it idles like a kitten. And it gets lots of attention-it's a real conversation piece."-Aaron Frank
Don't mistake Pat Dietrich's gleaming purple 2001 Suzuki Hayabusa for just another chromed-out show queen-thanks to a 1397cc big-bore kit and a gang of other performance work underneath the fairing, this big bird has gone as fast as 160 mph in the quarter-mile on motor (in 8.87 seconds) and 167 mph with the NOS system engaged. "I had some guys come up to me last year at the track and tell me some guy on a turbocharged Kawasaki ZX-12 was cracking on the "poseur" Hayabusa that pulled up on the trailer," Dietrich says. "Needless to say, the 12 owner was extremely pissed to see my poseur bike lay down times a half-second quicker than his!"
In addition to the aforementioned big-bore kit, Dietrich's 'Busa also features a Robert Mason-ported cylinder head, Megacycle racing cams, a Dynojet PCIII and a BDE 3 full exhaust system, all good for 206 hp on what Dietrich describes as a "stingy" dyno. With the nitrous-oxide system armed, output is closer to 270 hp-making the race-cut transmission gears and MRE air shifter welcome additions. More immediately evident than all these engine tweaks, though, are the appearance mods Dietrich dialed in-beginning with a gorgeous, two-tone brandywine paint scheme put down by Dan Edwards of Groverhill, Ohio, using House of Kolor-brand paints.
Setting off this mile-deep paint are acres of chrome plating by Sport Chrome in Stanton, California, and plenty of trick aftermarket accessories, such as custom CNC-machined levers and a brake arm from The Rotor Woman, bullet bar ends, a Mototeck undertail and a tribal chain guard from Alteredchrome.com. Indiglo gauges and a PaFreak custom saddle complete the cockpit mods. As you might imagine, Dietrich's bike can hold its own at any bike show (having taken, among other awards, People's Choice at the 2004 Cycle Fest in Auburn, Indiana), but Dietrich rides the bike, too. "Some people think it just sits in the garage covered up," he says. "Not true. I have well over 50 miles on it since it was finished-that's 200 quarter-mile blasts!"-Aaron Frank