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Old 06-06-2012, 07:15 PM   #1066
Irishman
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Joined: Jun 2012
Location: Birmingham. Alabama
Oddometer: 24
Hey Guys,

I'ma new guy just checking in. I just picked up a pretty decent 1983 XT550 and I found this thread searching on the internet, so I joined up to hopefully benefit from all of you guy's experience.

My XT550 seems to run pretty decent, but I haven't had the opportunity to really run it through its paces, because the PO just welded on a straight pipe with a turnout and I don't want to be "that guy" running around the streets with no muffler. Also the battery doesn't appear to be taking a charge, and the bike will only start with the kick starter. On top of that the speedo and tach are missing, but the cables appear to be there and capped off. I assume that it has a mechanical tach.

I already have a very nice Triumph Bonneville Cafe Racer/Sport Touring bike, I am not depending on this as my only bike. I don't have much money in it, and I would like to get it in good mechanical order and then slowly outfit it as an adventure bike with some decent brakes up front, some paniers and just in overall good nick. Having said that I want to do it all on the cheap, because I know I will never gat my money out of this bike other than enjoying riding it.

My questions are these:

Good ideas for a muffler?
Good ideas for a speedo and tack?

I have read most of this thread, but I am still curious as to where I should start other than a oil change, carb clean-up, new battery, some kind of cheap muffler, and some kind of gauges. Is there a link to a repair manual that I missed in my reading?

Thanks for any help....

Oh... Here's a picture from the day I brought it home:

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Old 06-06-2012, 07:31 PM   #1067
dsefcik
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Location: San Diego
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Irishman View Post
Oh... Here's a picture from the day I brought it home:

That looks pretty clean, way nicer than mine with 24K+ miles and rust. I have seen speedo/tach assy's on ebay have you looked there? My old beater has a SuperTrapp and they have "Universal" systems

http://www.supertrapp.com/product_se...rsal/index.asp

Maybe one will work for you..?
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Old 06-06-2012, 08:40 PM   #1068
Zecatfish
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Location: Arkansas USA
Oddometer: 7,922
Irishman:
I have an old Cobra muffler from an XR350R on mine.
ITs not to quiet but it is Forest legal and I kind of like the sound of it.
There is no direct fit aftermarket ones for it that I know of.
I would suggest just getting a Trailtech speedo setup unless your a purist
and then again your going to be looking at Ebay. I have the Stock gauges
here someplace if I can find it. I'll never put it back on.
Brakes: they just plain suck in stock trim, the best you can do with the
drum is an old dual leading shoe setup from a TT600 without changing
the front end to get a disc up there. I used the same XR350R front end
on mine for the disc brake and better suspension.
One more thing, even with a good battery your still going to be kicking it.
these things have no electric leg. But you get the carb right and they
are some of the easiest starting machines there is.
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Old 06-06-2012, 10:36 PM   #1069
dsefcik
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Irishman:

As Zecatfish says, they start easy if tuned right, mine will start first kick no throttle..even with no battery installed. If you want to see a photo of my SuperTrapp let me know, I can try to post it.
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Old 06-06-2012, 10:43 PM   #1070
dsefcik
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Oil Seal Replacement Without Disassembly

Most of my shaft seals are leaking (kickstart, gear shift, counter shaft, etc) and I wondered if anyone has had success replacing them without motor disassembly. I have done this with other motors but wanted to know if there were any gotchas with the Xt motor.

TIA...
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Old 06-06-2012, 10:52 PM   #1071
G600
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Irishman View Post
Hey Guys,

I'ma new guy just checking in. I just picked up a pretty decent 1983 XT550 and I found this thread searching on the internet, so I joined up to hopefully benefit from all of you guy's experience.

My XT550 seems to run pretty decent, but I haven't had the opportunity to really run it through its paces, because the PO just welded on a straight pipe with a turnout and I don't want to be "that guy" running around the streets with no muffler. Also the battery doesn't appear to be taking a charge, and the bike will only start with the kick starter. On top of that the speedo and tach are missing, but the cables appear to be there and capped off. I assume that it has a mechanical tach.

I already have a very nice Triumph Bonneville Cafe Racer/Sport Touring bike, I am not depending on this as my only bike. I don't have much money in it, and I would like to get it in good mechanical order and then slowly outfit it as an adventure bike with some decent brakes up front, some paniers and just in overall good nick. Having said that I want to do it all on the cheap, because I know I will never gat my money out of this bike other than enjoying riding it.

My questions are these:

Good ideas for a muffler?
Good ideas for a speedo and tack?

I have read most of this thread, but I am still curious as to where I should start other than a oil change, carb clean-up, new battery, some kind of cheap muffler, and some kind of gauges. Is there a link to a repair manual that I missed in my reading?

Thanks for any help....

Oh... Here's a picture from the day I brought it home:


Congrats on the new bike. It looks to be in good shape.

There is a workshop manual floating around on the internet. Do a search and you should find it.

When you check the charging / regulator-rectifier do so with a new (or tested) battery. The R/R unit will not work properly without one. You will get some weird voltages.

I have read about somebody adapting a DRZ400 muffler to the XT550. Also a muffler from a YZ450F. It did not require much work it seemed.

Check this out:
http://www.advrider.com/forums/showt...=250322&page=2

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Old 06-07-2012, 04:06 AM   #1072
Bart
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Quote:
Originally Posted by G600 View Post
Bart, interesting. How can the valve clearances cause hanging idle?
It is on 4 cylinder bikes combined with the carb balance where I have had the idle hang. I can't quite explain why but it has fixed quite a few idle hangs for me. I am not saying that it is necessarily the cause here but for the time it takes to check it is worth the piece of mind.
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Old 06-07-2012, 06:22 AM   #1073
Irishman
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Thanks everyone for replying to my post. I am starting on the leads you guys gave me on the mufflers [Spark arrestors ]. I am watching some on Ebay as we speak.

My carbs must be in decent shape, because It starts with one easy kick every time. I'm still going to run some Seafoam through the tank for several tankfulls.

Zecatfish, I will PM you about the gauge cluster [If I can PM at this early stage of noobdom]. I am interested in those if you are willing to sell for a reasonable price. I had considered a Trailtech.
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Old 06-07-2012, 12:29 PM   #1074
G600
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bart View Post
It is on 4 cylinder bikes combined with the carb balance where I have had the idle hang. I can't quite explain why but it has fixed quite a few idle hangs for me. I am not saying that it is necessarily the cause here but for the time it takes to check it is worth the piece of mind.

Thanks. Interesting. I have read about hanging idle and valve adjustments somewhere else, but don't recall where.
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Old 06-07-2012, 09:00 PM   #1075
Futura
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I used a used DRZ400 muffler. Cut off two inches and it bolted right on.
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Old 06-08-2012, 10:25 PM   #1076
Zecatfish
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Location: Arkansas USA
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Irishman: I'll have to look around and find the gauges I took off.
Just been busy with other projects right now, my CJ-5 and fuel tank mod.

I think I'm going to primer the tank tomorrow.
Heres a picture of it sitting on the bike for an idea to scale of my 5 gallon mod.



Its not perfect but sure a long ways from where I started.
__________________
Google Earth GPS Howto (still a work in progress) use USGS TOPO Maps to layout trails.
http://home.windstream.net/catfish/GPS


The Early Bird gets the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.
https://sites.google.com/site/ozarkadventuretours/

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Old 06-09-2012, 12:53 AM   #1077
G600
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Futura View Post


I used a used DRZ400 muffler. Cut off two inches and it bolted right on.

Looks really good. Do you have more pics preferably from the side and where it meets the headers?
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Old 06-10-2012, 08:52 AM   #1078
Irishman
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Repair Manual!

I just thought I would give back to the community... Here are two links to XT550 repair manuals. The first one is a compressed version:

[Edited the link out.]

and the second one is the full version:

[Edited the link out.]

I downloaded the second one and it seems to be pretty nice. Not the best quality, but it was free.

You never know how long these types of sites will be up and online. Get it while you can. Good luck.

Credit goes to a guy by the name of caduncle over on www.thumpertalk.com the links were posted back on January 30th, 2009.

http://www.thumpertalk.com/topic/647...-xt550-manual/

It took me a bit of looking to find them though. Enjoy.

I edited both of those direct links out because I didn't want to get anyone in trouble.

Irishman screwed with this post 06-12-2012 at 09:14 AM
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Old 06-10-2012, 01:52 PM   #1079
dsefcik
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@Irishman / Repair Manual :

Nice, thanks!

I actually have the original paper one but all the pages are falling apart. It is exactly the same one you posted links to.

Thanks!
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Old 06-12-2012, 09:45 AM   #1080
Irishman
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Joined: Jun 2012
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Trail Tech Vapor Installation?

Edit: Never mind... It looks pretty easy.

PS: I'm hoping to get to a motorcycle junkyard in a couple of days to search for a muffler. Wish me luck.

Irishman screwed with this post 06-12-2012 at 10:03 AM
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