HomeTechnical ReviewsHow to bottle feed a " Tiger"

How to bottle feed a ” Tiger”

Written by: Guy Caputo

It’s been quite some time since last we spoke, so this time it’s going to be a real doozy of a project. I shouldn’t really call this a project, but rather a rebuild since this particular motorcycle has already undergone a major transformation from stock to beast. When first we started this ordeal, it was supposed to be a simple motor build up project, at least that’s what I told my wife in the beginning. Since that time, it has blossomed into a full time obsession for me and I can see no end in sight. Let’s bring you up to date and start at the beginning, which is a good place to start.

About this time last year in March, we featured a complete rebuild project of a 2001 Suzuki GSX1300R Hayabusa called the “Maxton Monster”. We installed just about everything you could think of except the kitchen sink and to this day I bet it’s in there too. We wanted to bullet proof the motor to handle some high HP nitrous loads for doing some Land Speed Racing at Maxton, NC where the East Coast Timing Association holds their time trial events 6 times a year. Just after the project article came out, we took the Dragbike.com/Tiger Racing Hayabusa out for its inaugural run. With confidence and a brazen bravado, we rode on a trip down the Maxton Mile and promptly burned up the motor. In total shock and disbelief, we put our tail between our legs and returned to Toledo. It was later found out that I had made some very rookie mistakes with my nitrous tune-up. My drag racing experience with nitrous had to be adjusted because it was no match for the Maxton Mile. No longer was I just on the juice for 6-8 seconds, but rather for more than 18 seconds. That’s right my friends, on the juice for more than 18 seconds on a 22 second run, spraying at full tilt boogie to boot. Oh well, a valuable lesson learned and it was time to get back to down to business. After some major surgery and putting the “Tiger” back together, we returned to Maxton a few months later and seized 3 Land Speed Records and was honored as the newest member of the prestigious ECTA 200 MPH club. We returned to Maxton again in October of 2003 and came away with more Land Speed Records and to this day the Dragbike.com, Tiger Racing Hayabusa still retains the title as the “Fastest Nitrous Bike” at Maxton.

We all know that records were made to be broken and I’m sure mine will fall by the wayside as records so often do APS/F 1650-4 214.53 Oct 03. Now 214.53 with a 215mph exit speed is nothing to sneeze at. If you put this into perspective, 215 MPH is:

  • 315 feet per second
  • or roughly a football field with both endzones per second
  • or 346 KPH
  • or 186 knots
  • or mach .29
  • or 1/3 the speed of a .45 caliber bullet

Anyway you slice it, it’s damn fast.

So this winter, it was back to the Maximum Performance Cycles DynoJet Center for more improvements. This time, I was taking no chances with the improvement makeover so the “Tiger” was put up on the Handy Lift at Maximum Performance Cycles in Toledo, Ohio where my cousin Mike Caputo could work some magic.

When it comes to Land Speed Racing, enough is never enough. Being the fastest is just never fast enough and so I ask myself, how can I go faster? Hmmmmmm, if 1 bottle of Nitrous was good, it just stands to reason that 2 bottles must be better.  


One of the problems with using a single 2.5lb Nitrous bottle for such a long period of time is that with larger jets you deplete your bottle pressure as you go down the track. This in turns causes your motor to go richer and richer in fuel as you approach the timing cones at the 1-mile mark. Even though we were accelerating thru the traps, we were slowing our acceleration as we approached them. It sounds crazy but that is what happens. Your just not charging as hard with all the power you could be when you get to the end of the run. By using 5lbs of nitrous, we hope to be able to better maintain optimum bottle pressure for the entire run. Since we are on the subject of bottle pressure, I found a little technical goody that I just had to have. A Digital Nitrous Pressure Gauge and an Air/Fuel Ratio Gauge with Nitrous cutoff from Dyno Tune. If you click on the links, you’ll get the idea. The Nitrous pressure gauge has a + or – of 2 lbs and will cutoff my nitrous if it goes dangerously lean. Now that’s something I just had to have.

The Air/Fuel ratio gauge tells me exactly how rich or lean I am whether on or off the juice. No self respecting Busa should be without this gauge. You can even get custom chromed gauge mounts for your bike to fit the gauges perfectly, now that’s what I like…Chrome!

After making some life altering changes to the Nitrous system, we proceeded to test the bike on the Maximum Performance Cycles DynoJet Dynamometer. First a 242HP pull, then a 267HP pull, then a 282 HP pull, then I made another change and on what I thought would be at least a 325HP pull…POOF! The head gasket gave way and we burned up #3 & 4 again, same as last year. Hmmmm, everything was looking just fine, Oh well, that will happen when your tuning for High HP

The motor came out…


 And was taken apart…


You can see where the head was repaired from an incident on the dynamometer while tuning for 300+HP. NHRA & AMA/Prostar Prostock rider, builder and tuner, Paul Gast from Fast by Gast performed all the repair work on the head. When your tuning for large amounts of Nitrous, sometimes stuff happens and this was one of those times. It was concluded that the area of the cylinder between 3&4 gave way and burned between them. Nitrous can be very unforgiving if not tuned just quite right. We found the problem, made the adjustments, rebuilt the motor, SPENT MORE $$$$ and we were off again to create more havoc. While the motor was out of the frame and apart, I sent my transmission to Paul Gast who also specializes in transmission repair (who’d a thunk it) and had my transmission modified for the high HP. It’s a known fact that the Hayabusa transmission will sometimes fail to shift when under high horse power loads. Paul has developed a modification for the mighty Busa’s tranny, which eliminates those problems. I ran into that problem last year while at the Maxton Mile when the “Tiger” would not shift from 5 th to 6 th under a nitrous load. Since I had already had the tranny modified by Paul last year, it was a simple fix for him to perform.

We changed from the small nitrous solenoids and lines to the larger solenoids and braided lines to accommodate the larger jetting we were now using. While making numerous runs at Maxton, I found that the smaller solenoids did not hold up to the constant use for such a long period of time without either being inconsistent or failing all together. On one of my runs, I had to swap my purge solenoid with my nitrous solenoid just to finish the meet. So I’m not taking those kinds of chances any more.

Now your asking yourself, why the heck is Guy showing me a picture of the right hand controls for? Look carefully my friends and tell me what you really see. That’s right, that isn’t your ordinary Hayabusa right hand switch assembly normally found in the USA. This particular switch assembly turns off the headlight and taillight so I can save a few amps of power from having to be generated from the alternator. They were used on the European models and I figured it might give me a savings in HP. Who knows, maybe nothing distinguishable, but I thought it was trick nonetheless. I found this cool item over at a website across the ocean in Germany. Now before you click on the website, unless you read German, you must first use the Google language tools found here. Then type in the web address in the “translate a web page” box (www.hayabusanews.de) and it will automatically translate the web page for you. You can use this tool for any web page in another language you do not understand. Now you truly are global Internet gurus. I received several cool items from Paul Wojak’s Power Shop including a clutch slave cover, a stainless bolt assortment, a complete motor gasket set and other trick items that are must have.



He ships the items right to your door. It takes a bit longer than the usual UPS, but it arrives here just the same. Thanks Paul for all your help. Paul Wojak can be reached by clicking on his name. It pays to surf the net sometimes. Not everything trick is here in the US.

Another cool item was this Carbon Fiber Air box located underneath the full race carbon fiber gas tank I found on http://www.suzukihayabusa.org/. This discussion board has got to be one of the coolest around. If you own a Busa and your not already a member, you should be. There are a few other boards on the Internet, but none has the technical prowess for turbo’s and nitrous bikes like this board. Here you can find the likes of TheMotorhead, Speed King, 2fast4u2c (that’s me), Johnnycheese, TZ750, Hank, Fulltilt and many others just waiting to be asked those technical questions you have always been wanting to ask and get answers for. I just love those names don’t you?

We must reduce additional weight off this bike I can’t seem to do it myself. At least when I take weight off the bike, it stays off.

I installed a new Carbon Fiber Cut tank from Catalyst Racing Composites where Mike Verdugo is the mastermind behind most of the Carbon Fiber creations on the “Tiger”.



This thing gave me a woo…whoops, I almost forgot myself. We don’t need another Janet Jackson incident now do we. Let’s just say, I was very excited when the tank arrived on my doorstep. It weighs next to nothing and holds about 2 gallons of fuel with a 2001 fuel pump installed. You can have it made with as many fuel bungs as you want, with or without the fuel pump ring. My carbon fiber hump is just awesome, I mean awesome. How could anyone not want one of these on his or her bike? Now I can get way behind the windscreen with this tank on the bike. That should be good for another few mile per hour, what do you think?

I was able to mount all the required electronics on my Tiger Tail inner fender eliminator from Tiger Racing. Without this inner fender assembly, there was no way I could lower the bike and still mount everything I had to install. As you can see, my Power Commander, Schnitz EFIR-13 Timing Retard unit, nitrous pressure transducer for both my digital Nitrous gauge and pressure activated bottle heaters, NOS purge solenoid and MPS Kill box for my air shifter fits very nicely and you can still mount the second seat without a hitch.

After re-assembling the bike and getting it ready for another trip to Maxton, it was time to have my Master Polisher, Phil Tinsley of X-treme Cycles in Oregon, OH give the “Tiger” a little polishing touch up. Phil carefully wraps and masked off the frame before giving it his full attention.



Phil then used a special 2-step process to re-polish the “Tigers” aluminum frame. First came the finish buff with a new special compound to remove all the haze and fine scratches from another years worth of abuse.



Once that process was completed, the frame was washed down completely to remove any polishing rouge from the frame so it doesn’t contaminate the mirror phase. The mirror phase, as Phil puts it, is another special polishing compound not found at your local auto shop. It is designed for show polishing work only and only for this type of aluminum. It requires special polishing wheels made especially for this compound. Once Phil has done his magic, it is a sight to behold.

As you can see, Phil’s reflection is how all his work is done, beautifully. X-treme Cycles also does all of Tiger Racings chrome work.

And now, without further delay, I present the “Tiger”.



 Total Length axle to axle


 Seat height


 Fork Rake angle

 28 degrees

 JE Custom Nitrous Pistons

 Carrillo Rods  
 APE crank and head stud bolts  
 1mm over intake and exhaust stainless steel valves    
 Web Cams   .378” lift (small)
 NOS Nitrous Jet  big
 NOS Fuel jet  even bigger
 Timing Retard on N2O  secret
 Fuel pressure  secret
 Stage III Port  Fast by Gast
 Transmission  Fast by Gast
 Exhaust System  Muzzy Titanium

All motor work and Custom DynoJet mapping performed by Mike Caputo, Maximum Performance Cycles, Toledo, OH

And a ton of other goodies…

230MPH or Bust on Nitrous!

Special Thanks to:

Maximum Performance Cycles
Toledo, OH

Schnitz Racing
Decatur, IN

Fast by Gast
Grand Island, NY

X-treme Cycles
Oregon, OH

Until Next Time, Safe Racing to All Guy Caputo can be reached at GuyCaputo@buckeye-express.com 

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