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A BLAZING APE. K-Speed’s Yamaha ‘Monkey-Slaz’ Tracker

Posted on June 27, 2017 by Andrew in Tracker. 31 comments

For those not in the know, Yamaha’s ‘M-Slaz’ is a naked version of its popular YZF-R15 single cylinder sports bike first launched in Asia and India in 2008. And yes, we had to look that up. As reliable as it is underwhelming, it’s a bike that in normal guise most of us would instantly overlook in favour of an MT or XSR. But when they just aren’t on the menu, how do you take what’s available locally and turn it into something you’d die to ride? This is how. Here’s Thailand’s K-Speed with their Yamaha ‘Monkey Slaz’ Tracker.

Being such a popular bike this isn’t the first time K-Speed and Eak, their head honcho,  have gone to town on an M-Slaz. “Last year we made one for a Yamaha M-Slaz custom competition and we got 2nd place overall,” he notes. They ended selling this bike to a Taiwanese customer, but not before it gained its fair share of publicity. “This year a new customer asked me to build him something similar, but I thought I could do better. This is it.”

Eak’s first step was to chop down the original rear frame, mainly to accommodate the soon-to-be new owner’s less than gigantic stature. “I thought that it was probably too high for my customer. Similarly, I built a new custom rear frame that would fit a slim, flat saddle and a lower overall seat height.”

Supporting the home side when he can, Eak made the call to use local Thai tyres for the build. “I’ve used Vee Rubber’s 140/80-17s for both wheels; it was mainly to add visual weight and to make the bike look bigger than the original.”

As the customer wanted this bike to have a custom tracker look with a modern twist, Eak decided to bin the factory’s wide and high handlebars, replacing them with a low-rise RZM Racing bar. “And as I like a clean and tidy rear on my bikes, everything back there that wasn’t absolutely necessary was scrapped. The net result is a modern look and a big rear wheel without any clutter.”

The tank is essentially the same as the original unit, but with some unused parts removed and some Motive custom parts added – mostly to add more black to the bike’s visuals. “Then we added a new LED headlight with a custom bracket, as I much prefer the round headlight to the factory bike’s original.”

The bike’s suspension set-up also remains largely untouched, bar some minor tweaks. Surprisingly, the wheels are stock but a new gold finish was applied to give them some visual pop and to pair them up with the gold USD shocks up front. “I think black with gold is a great colour combination,” says Eak. John Player would no doubt agree.

Other mods to the black beauty included a new braking system with Brembos on both front and rear calipers, along with some new brake and clutch master cylinders. There’s also some new racing-style rear sets, a custom rear brake light and Diablo bar-end turn signals.

After construction had finished and the paint had been applied to the Yamaha, Eak took the bike for its maiden voyage. “I was personally very happy with it, but I was really glad to see that it was catching everyone’s eye as I rode it around the local streets.” No kidding.

“My favourite part of the tracker? I really like the muffler. It’s a unique look, and I put quite a bit of time into the design. It really adds character to the finished bike,” he notes. We couldn’t agree more.

[ K-Speed – Facebook – Instagram ]

  • Andy Rappold

    Wow…there is probably not one feature on that bike I think its useful,nice or anything positive….that must be some kind of record. 😂
    This is when you go full egay on a little comuter.

    • Andrew Jones

      Thanks for you positivity, Andy. We’d ask for you to keep it a little more positive in the future.

      • Andy Rappold

        Maybe had a bad day but it aint certainly “hate speech” what I wrote.

      • the watcher

        He didn’t like it, he said so. Why bring hate into it? Jesus Christ! I’ve noticed it a lot recently: dissent labelled “hate”. It’s not, and saying ithat it is is passive/aggressive, PC bullying.

  • aaron snyder

    With a pounding 17 Hp I imagine this is a misdemeanor in the making. The tank area is a bit visually heavy but other than that it looks like a cracking little scooter.

    • Andrew Jones

      Couldn’t agree more.

  • ShS

    Spettacolare lavoro superbo su moto moderna…
    Di vero carattere!

    • Andrew Jones

      Concordato. Grazie ShS!

  • AB

    What a cracker build. Pay attention Yamaha this is what mechanical design should look like.

    • the watcher

      Yeah, a KTM!

      • AB

        Yeah I though if it was orange …..

  • mtnsicl

    This gives ugly a whole new meaning!

  • Steve Morse

    What a fun little bike – great look. For my purposes the only thing I’d change is the tires, to something some suitable for the roads I ride.

    • Andrew Jones

      I’m thinking that they would be perfect for most Thai riding, tho.

  • Flying W

    He “really likes the muffler”? It looks like an oil can…

  • This is crazy cool! Better than a Grom.

    • Andrew Jones

      The Grom is a good analogy. I’d have this over a Grom any day of the week.

  • guvnor67

    I really like this, looks a bit like the mad cousin of a KTM 390! Picture it with sticky rubber and it’d be ideal for wizzin round city streets and in and out of peak hour traffic. Job well done I say!

    • Andrew Jones

      Well said, Guv.

  • Len Farquharson

    An eye catching ride and eminently suitable for riding vast tracts of South East Asia and the sub continent with simple addition of a front guard. Well done!

    • Andrew Jones

      Thanks Len!

  • martin hodgson

    I absolutely love this!!! How the hell do you make such a dorky little bike from the factory look so cool. Totally makes sense for their market, but also in my little town with half sealed and half dirt roads this would be the perfect bike for hooning to the shops on. $5 of fuel a week and I doubt you could have more fun on such a commute. So easy for people to be negative, but look at the stock bike and what a job they’ve done transforming it, look at the purpose its been built for and look at the quality of the work. They’re a successful workshop for a very good reason!!!

  • Tony Blake

    Great Job. nice modern look.

  • That agressive ‘slash’ line from tank to tail is pure Pipeburn clickbait!

  • Mayakovski

    Not bad, but please do something about that ugly muffler box.

  • Fast2Furious

    So many nice things going on with this bike. It looks like a design exercise. Really amazing except for that ridiculous oil can/pipewrap exhaust system.

  • Mgg II

    I would like to buy it…how much…lets talk!?

  • bnjmn

    This is like taking a great song and killing it with a crap cover version.
    At first glance I saw it at about 40º and thought mmmkay, then I was like, oh dear! looks more like a mosquito on heat.

  • Maxi

    EXCELENTE!!! tengo una Yamaha Fz16 que trataré de hacer algo parecido. Muy bueno, felicitaciones

  • Maxi

    Perdón, que estilo seria la moto?