Originally Posted by JMo (& piglet)
... agree it is utterly bullet-proof... however, the XR400 doesn't have an electric start (or battery electrical system) that would make life a LOT easier on a rally bike? That's not to say those can't be retro-fitted, but then that would negate a lot of the weight advantage over the DRZ?
I also wonder if, in high temperature racing conditions, the air-cooled XR might not suffer more than a liquid cooled bike? It's fine as long as you keep moving, but stuck in a sand dune, you might cook the little fella?
I've long been tempted to take my 400 back to Morocco in competition - however, running all the nav gear would be tricky without a battery...
You can put a 200W stator on the XR400, plus do a battery conversion. Parts from the LTX?400 Honda quad (even the e-start) are interchangeable with the XR. Personally...I wouldn't do the e-start conversion.
As far as cooling capacity, some people used to weld additional aluminum fins on the engine...but you're right, that ain't gonna help you much when there is not air flow over them.
In terms of oil cooling...I was sort thinking of putting a larger oil cooler rad on the XR (maybe off a DR650?) and then (as long as you had the bigger output stator) hook up a fan to it as well. I think it could be quite effective when you don't have enough air flow over your engine fins.