What is a Scrambler Motorcycle? Know How to Make One

Modified On Oct 28, 2018 By Naveen Soni for Ducati Scrambler

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Almost we all have heard about scrambler motorcycles which are offered by Ducati, Triumph and some other popular brands.Have you ever wondered what are these machines exactly, why and when they were built first and why they are called scramblers? We will tell you the whole story.

In the late 1920’s, some point to point races were set in England that were all about how fast you can reach from one point to the other. Conquering whatever terrain laid on the way, the racers had to finish it in the shortest time possible. That time, dirt bikes were not in mass production and you need to make your road bike compatible to tackle all-terrain challenges during the race. 

These type of races were called ‘Scrambles’ and by 50’s they developed into some organised challenges like Californian Desert Scramble or closed circuit trials and that is the reason why the era of the scramble is known as the birth of ‘Motocross’. By the mid 60’s the machines became closer to the dirt bikes we see in production today and they were called ‘Scramblers’.

Soon these scramblers came into mass production at some popular houses like Triumph, BSA, Ducati and other. So, what were the characteristics of these motorcycle? Here is the list.

  • Torque over top end power
  • A higher mounted exhaust
  • Large ground clearance
  • A shorter seat with good padding
  • Raw Styling
  • Smaller tanks
  • Lightweight components
  • Mini gauges and a tucked in light.
  • Durable spoked wheels
  • Chunky off-road tires

It is very important for a scrambler motorcycle to be powerful, reliable and lightweight without giving much attention to the visuals. And that is the reason why scramblers are such interesting machines to ride. As we mentioned earlier that during their inception scramblers were trimmed out of the street motorcycles, so you can also make a scrambler using a regular torquey machine considering following alterations.

  • First of all, you need to understand that what is the purpose of the machine that you are going to make. A scrambler needs to go through every kind of terrain, so the chassis of the motorcycle you are using for base should be durable enough for that.
  • Remove all the extra weight from the motorcycle like cowls, fenders and other styling elements including the headlight. You can use a lightweight round or other shaped headlight in the place of stock one and chopped high mounted fenders can be used as well.

  • You also need to increase the ground clearance of the machine that can be achieved by replacing the suspension set-up with a different unit that is having a larger travel. And that is the best option when you have to use the motorcycle for proper off-roading.
  • The seat is an important part of a scrambler and that should be shorter to cut the extra weight off and carrying a good padding for comfort.

  • You need to replace the regular muffler or mount the same at a higher position. You can also keep bare exhaust pipe if you like some extra sound as the mufflers also contribute a significant value to the weight.

  • The regular wheels of the bike need to be replaced with more durable and flexible spoked wheels and the set of new tyres should be compatible for both on-road and off-road riding conditions.

  • If your base machine is not having enough power aftermarket carbs can give you extra responsiveness and a useful horsepower improvement.

So, if you can’t buy a new motorcycle but want to ride a scrambler, go ahead and make one yourself or take the help of a good customizer to convert your regular motorcycle into a grass churning, hill climbing beast.

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