Customized motorcycles are everywhere nowadays, and scrambler versions are the most sought by those looking to add a bit of adventure and retro looks to their life. Daniel Peter is one of those persons, a photographer by profession during the day, and a custom bike builder by passion during the night.
Having raced Yamaha SR500’s back in the days, Daniel knows very well what it takes to transform this cool classic Yamaha into something very special. His latest work, a 1978 SR500, is the fourth SR he’s built to date, and by the looks of it, he managed to hit the sweet spot with this SR500 Scrambler!
“Having road raced an SR500 for a few seasons, I learned how to make these light and fast. This bike is very nimble, sounds amazing, and absolutely rips while still being a practical daily rider. It will get you to your favorite taco joint before you can say carnitas”, says Daniel.
This racing background certainly did get into the SR500 Scrambler that he built in his workshop in Chicago, and the custom SR500 now tips the scale at 128 kg wet, much less than the factory weight of 158 kg. But not only Daniel managed to decrease the weight, but he also considerably improved the Yamaha engine with a lot of performance parts.
The motor’s been bumped to 540 cc, with a grocery list of go-fast bits that includes a lighter XT500 crank, a new piston from JE and a Megacycle cam for better torque down low. R&D valve springs with titanium caps, a Powerdynamo ignition and a high-flow oil pump from Kedo round out the package. Hoos Racing refreshed the crank and cut new valve seats for Daniel, but he tackled the rest of the rebuild himself. Every single bearing and seal was replaced along the way too. As for the carb, it’s been swapped out for a 39 mm Keihin FCR flatslide number, fed by a fat K&N filter.
The exhaust system is a combination of a custom made stainless steel header, and a Cone Engineering muffler.
The performance upgrades to the engine ate matched by suspension improvements. Daniel Peter chose a fork sourced from a 1995 Kawasaki ZX6R, and it allows full adjustability, while the springs take into account the lighter weight of this SR500 Scrambler.
Brakes have also been retouched, with Daniel opting to use a mix of Beringer and Brembo parts, while the chassis has been reworked with the installation of a kicked up sub-frame, partially hidden below the new saddle from MotoLanna. All controls gave been repositioned, lighting is full LED both at the front and back, and there’s also a neat cutaway sprocket cover, and a Toxic Moto chain blocker to keep the chain from biting the tyre.
All in all, this SR500 Scrambler built by Daniel Peter shows what you can achieve if you keep it simple!