A road racer rebuilds his father’s forgotten enduro into a tarmac smoker…
The Yamaha DT175 was a two-stroke, street-legal enduro that debuted in 1973. It weighed just 218 pounds dry, and the reed-valve induction engine made 15-17 horsepower and 11 ft-lb of torque. While those numbers might not sound very impressive, these machines were lightweight, well-balanced, and scored incredibly high in the fun department. In fact, we have two of them in the BikeBound stable!
“It is solidly built and, when ridden with skill, is a great mix of competition trial and motocross machinery with the added bonus of being road legal too.” —Classic Motorbikes
Enter Sebastian Cardona Correa of Colombia, an IT solutions architect and semipro racer who learned to ride on his father’s 1982 Yamaha DT175 “Calima” — a common nickname for the bike in the Colombian market, short for “calibmatic carburetion.” Years later, Sebastian decided to restore his father’s old DT:
“This is my father’s bike that my whole family grew up on, so it has a big sentimental value — and the bike had been abandoned in a corner of the garage. So in the beginning, the idea was to fix the bike and use it in the city.”
However, an even better idea soon came to him: to rebuild the bike as a motard and use it for race training! Working closely with his race mechanic, JVR Motorcycles, Sebastian transformed the bike into a track-ready two-stroke supermoto, fitting 17-inch wheels, upgrading the suspension for circuit racing, rebuilding the engine with performance parts, and making the old DT look as good as she performs.
In the end, Sebastian’s father loved the build so much he gifted his son his treasured “Calima.” And Sebastian already has more plans for the bike…
“This motorcycle was born with the idea of being a training bike, but with the end of project, I think that I will use the bike in competition and it will be part of the decoration of my apartment.”
Below, we get the full story on this hot little two-stroke supermotard!
Yamaha DT175 Motard: Builder Interview
• Please tell us a bit about yourself, your history with motorcycles, and your workshop.
I am an amateur semi professional rider from Colombia with a big passion for racing and motorcycles. My father taught me to ride on his “Calima,” but I really began to learn about racing with an R6R and rode with a friend. In 2017 I began to race in the local championship. In my normal life I am an IT Solutions Architect.
• What’s the make, model, and year of the bike?
Yamaha DT175 1982. In Colombia, this model of motorcycle is most common name “Calima”, like a shortcut of calibmatic carburation.
• Why was this bike built?
This is my father’s bike that my whole family grew up on, so it has a big sentimental value — and the bike had been abandoned in a corner of the garage. So in the beginning, the idea was to fix the bike and use it in the city.
But then I thought of the option to use it for training, like a motard, and with the important advisory of my race mechanic (JVR Motorcycles), I began the project in 3 steps:
- Suspension, brakes, chassis, and rims
My father was very happy with the end product and decided to give me his treasure.
• What was the design concept and what influenced the build?
The idea was a little motard motorcycle.
• What custom work was done to the bike?
The majority of the work in this bike is custom. The engine was completely rebuilt and upgraded with pieces from a motocross bike. The original suspension was meant for off-road and now it’s for circuit racing, like a motard with rim 17″.
This bike has a monoshock from an R6R, crankshaft from a CR125, TM 37mm, and a lot of performance pieces.
• Does the bike have a nickname?
“Calima.” For now I do not have a specific name because it’s my father’s motorcycle, and he does not have a specific name.
• Can you tell us what it’s like to ride this bike?
This motorcycle was born with the idea of being a training bike, but with the end of project, I think that I will use the bike in competition and it will be part of the decoration of my apartment.
• Was there anything done during this build that you are particularly proud of?
All, a lot of the work, it’s manual, and I learned a lot about mechanics and the art of the 2T — and the appearance is great too.