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Old 12-27-2012, 08:53 AM   #1
crobox OP
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!!! 1986 XL600R Adventure Bike Rebuild !!!

I've posted a bit about this build in the XL600 thread, starting somewhere around here.

However it's gotten to the point where I think the bike build should have its own thread... so here it is!!

Way back in my 20's, let's say some time around 1990 or so, I had another XL600R. I think it was a 1984 model. Here are a few pictures I've dug up of that FIRST BIKE:








And here are a few pictures I dug up of the CURRENT BIKE:
(Amazingly, these are the ONLY pre-teardown pictures I took of the bike...)





More to come.....

-Christian
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Current Bikes: 2002 XR650L, Nighthawk, 1986 Honda XL600R, 1988 Hondasuki KLNX250R, 1988 BMW R100GS (dead)
Previous Bikes: Honda XL250R (2 of them), Honda XL600R, Kawasaki KLR600, BMW K1100LT, BMW R60/6, BMW K75, Husqvarna 430XC
Click HERE for my Cummins 4BT International Scout build thread www.christianristow.com

crobox screwed with this post 10-03-2013 at 09:55 PM
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Old 12-27-2012, 09:01 AM   #2
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This build started in a rather inauspicious way....

Originally, I wanted nothing other than a KTM 950/990 Adventure. I decided I needed to try to sell some stuff to raise money for a KTM, so I decided the XL was going to go onto Craigslist or eBay. I pulled it into the shop to freshen it up for sale, and much to my surprise it DID NOT start. (It used to run fine). I discovered it had no spark, and in the process of trying to diagnose that I opened the cover plugs on the stator cover and was surprised to see oil in there. I assumed that this was wrong, so I pulled the engine and popped off that left engine cover, only to see factory-drilled holes in the left case-half which allow oil into the stator chamber. Confused, I joined ADVrider.com and started posting questions.

I started reading posts in the XL600 thread, and at some point while reading all this, I simultaneously realized I could not really afford a KTM and also re-kindled my previous love for the old Honda.

So diagnosing a no-spark situation in order to sell the bike quickly transformed into a frame-off rebuild!
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Current Bikes: 2002 XR650L, Nighthawk, 1986 Honda XL600R, 1988 Hondasuki KLNX250R, 1988 BMW R100GS (dead)
Previous Bikes: Honda XL250R (2 of them), Honda XL600R, Kawasaki KLR600, BMW K1100LT, BMW R60/6, BMW K75, Husqvarna 430XC
Click HERE for my Cummins 4BT International Scout build thread www.christianristow.com
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Old 12-27-2012, 09:06 AM   #3
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I have never been a fan of the Gold color scheme on the 1986 / 1987 bikes, so one thing I will be doing in this build is radically changing the color scheme.

At this time, the color scheme I am aiming for is something like this:



I'm not certain whether I will be re-painting my original stock tank in this color scheme, or maybe buying a Clarke plastic tank in "Reflex Blue" and putting on some nice 3M Orange sticker material to get the same look. I realize the benefits of the plastic tank, but I am (always) on a low budget and $200 could certainly be put to other good uses in this build.

Also, I have already purchased and installed a Ricky Stator, and I am very hopeful that this will solve my no-spark situation.

More to come...
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Current Bikes: 2002 XR650L, Nighthawk, 1986 Honda XL600R, 1988 Hondasuki KLNX250R, 1988 BMW R100GS (dead)
Previous Bikes: Honda XL250R (2 of them), Honda XL600R, Kawasaki KLR600, BMW K1100LT, BMW R60/6, BMW K75, Husqvarna 430XC
Click HERE for my Cummins 4BT International Scout build thread www.christianristow.com
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Old 12-27-2012, 06:48 PM   #4
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Old 12-28-2012, 04:18 AM   #5
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me too :)
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Old 12-29-2012, 04:22 PM   #6
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Thanks guys... having subscribers helps me get motivated to post here.

One thing I have thus far neglected to mention is the spark of motivation that got me going on this "get an adventure bike" kick. The reason for all this is that I intend (hope, wish, dream) to ride this thing around Iceland sometime in the next few years. I visited there this summer after having been mildly obsessed with the country for many years, and visiting only made me MUCH MORE obsessed. I came up with the idea of riding around the whole island-nation, and therefrom sprang the project!

I hung a map of Iceland in the workshop to help me not lose sight of the goal. Here's the frame in it's current state alongside the map.....



You can see that I have repainted the swingarm, too. That is part of the "no-more-gold" campaign. I got most of the paint off with an angle-grinder mounted wire brush, and then removed the hard-to-reach stuff with a sandblaster. (A side-note about my sandblaster... when I started this project I remembered that I had seen a blasting cabinet at my local junkyard a while ago. I went over to see if it was still there, and it was, and I talked the guy down from $250 to $180, and after replacing air lines and one or two other things, it works great! SWEET!) If you look closely you can also see that I machined and then welded in some threaded plugs at the handlebar ends. I figure these will be useful for bark-busters, and/or weights.



Here you can see the dual headlight assembly mounted onto the bike. I made a lower mount from .065" stainless sheet, and used the upper bolts from the lower triple clamp. And I made an upper mount from .500" OD, .065" wall stainless tubing with plate brackets welded on, and used the bolts which hold the instrument cluster and the old headlight mounts to the upper triple clamp. Here you can also see the beginning of the aluminum headlight faring that I will make for the bike. I think I am actually gonna start over on that piece, because the current piece is .065" thick, which I think is too thin to weld nicely. I will go to something like .100". You can also see the XR650L turn signals I just got off eBay. The only reason I went with those over the original XL600 signals is because they were much cheaper!



Here is the reinforced subframe in all its painted glory! You can also see here the rear-most cross-brace on the frame (the one that holds the seat). I re-made that one from .188" steel for increased rigidity. I also drilled two small holes rearward of the main holes which I will likely use as mounting spots for a rear rack. New UNI air filter already in place.



After having the hundreds of parts which make up this bike literally strewn all over my shop for the last few weeks, I finally decided I needed to get a little more organized. So I found some rolling carts and put everything in one place. I have been thinking that the engine would just go back in without any real work or investigation, but.... I recently sold another bike and, feeling a bit flush, I purchased a cylinder jug on eBay which has been professionally bored to 101mm, along with a Wiseco 101mm piston, rings, cross-pin, etc. So I will actually be taking the top end apart sometime soon. I will investigate the valves and will have them re-done if need be at that time.



As I posted in the main XL600 thread a while ago, I realized at some point that I had neither the old-style cylinder head with the cross-intake valve, nor did I have the new-style intake manifold with the milled passage between the ports. I mulled this over for a while and decided that instead of paying $60 or more for a new intake manifold, I would just modify mine. I did some fancy measuring to figure out what size O-ring would work. Then on my mill, I did the following.. 1) milled a radius channel at the top to join the existing O-ring grooves, 2) milled a straight channel at the bottom to connect the bottoms of the existing O-ring grooves, 3) plunge-milled four cylindrical flat-bottomed holes and filled them with pressed-in aluminum plugs in order to block off the un-used portions of the existing O-ring grooves (so that fuel-air mixture cannot get to the "inside" of the new O-ring, at least not in any high volume, and lastly 4) milled a passage between the ports.

I always enjoy using my tools and a little ingenuity to work with what I have rather than buy something new. I just like the challenge, and I like saving money (so that I can spend it somewhere else!)

If anyone is interested an another build I did a few years ago in which I did a LOT of wacky custom fabrication rather than spend money on stuff, it can be found right here.


Next up....
Rebuild forks with new seals (and remove the Gold from the fork bottoms!)
Bondo dents on old tank and re-paint it in new Blue/Orange color scheme
Rebuild top end with new piston and jug
And lots of other stuff I am sure!

Cheers,
Christian
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Current Bikes: 2002 XR650L, Nighthawk, 1986 Honda XL600R, 1988 Hondasuki KLNX250R, 1988 BMW R100GS (dead)
Previous Bikes: Honda XL250R (2 of them), Honda XL600R, Kawasaki KLR600, BMW K1100LT, BMW R60/6, BMW K75, Husqvarna 430XC
Click HERE for my Cummins 4BT International Scout build thread www.christianristow.com

crobox screwed with this post 12-29-2012 at 09:54 PM
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Old 12-29-2012, 04:53 PM   #7
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Sweet dude.

TrevorR screwed with this post 12-30-2012 at 08:33 AM
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Old 12-30-2012, 03:01 PM   #8
crobox OP
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A problem I noticed on this bike when I first looked into it a few years ago was that the little "mounting arms" between the carburetors (the arms that hold the two carbs together) were broken. The carbs, which are supposed to be "fixed" relative to each other, were actually free to move about. Not good... especially with regard to the progressive linkage.

I looked up "broken carb mounts" or something to that effect on the main XL600 thread, and I learned that this was not an uncommon problem. However, I didn't really notice any particularly awesome solutions. My first solution, a hose-clamp around the float bowls, was not awesome either. So I came up with the brackets seen in the following two pictures:





In the bottom picture you can see that I have sandblasted one float bowl. At the time of this writing, the carbs have been totally sandblasted and wire-brushed and look like this:



At this point they are done being rebuilt, with the exception of new float bowl gaskets, which I am waiting for in the mail.

I actually took this last picture for the purpose of asking a question... which I have posted here in the XL600 thread.

Cheers,
Christian
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Current Bikes: 2002 XR650L, Nighthawk, 1986 Honda XL600R, 1988 Hondasuki KLNX250R, 1988 BMW R100GS (dead)
Previous Bikes: Honda XL250R (2 of them), Honda XL600R, Kawasaki KLR600, BMW K1100LT, BMW R60/6, BMW K75, Husqvarna 430XC
Click HERE for my Cummins 4BT International Scout build thread www.christianristow.com
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Old 12-30-2012, 05:14 PM   #9
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Answered the question, Christian.

Cool build you have going here. I really like the color scheme you're going with which is kinda strange since I'm kind of a stickler for the factory colors. But in this case I think a change is justified--I never liked that gold.
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Old 01-04-2013, 07:10 PM   #10
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Sub, I have an 1984 waiting for some tlc

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Old 01-04-2013, 11:33 PM   #11
Carter Pewterschmidt
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crobox View Post


As I posted in the main XL600 thread a while ago, I realized at some point that I had neither the old-style cylinder head with the cross-intake valve, nor did I have the new-style intake manifold with the milled passage between the ports. I mulled this over for a while and decided that instead of paying $60 or more for a new intake manifold, I would just modify mine. I did some fancy measuring to figure out what size O-ring would work. Then on my mill, I did the following.. 1) milled a radius channel at the top to join the existing O-ring grooves, 2) milled a straight channel at the bottom to connect the bottoms of the existing O-ring grooves, 3) plunge-milled four cylindrical flat-bottomed holes and filled them with pressed-in aluminum plugs in order to block off the un-used portions of the existing O-ring grooves (so that fuel-air mixture cannot get to the "inside" of the new O-ring, at least not in any high volume, and lastly 4) milled a passage between the ports.
As much as I'm dismayed by your determination to remove the greatest hue ever applied to a set of suspension components, I will still offer you a favor. If that intake doesn't work out I have a spare one I can send you.
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Old 01-06-2013, 12:56 PM   #12
crobox OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carter Pewterschmidt View Post
As much as I'm dismayed by your determination to remove the greatest hue ever applied to a set of suspension components....

I'm actually LOLing!

Sorry to dismay you! To each his own, I guess.... The gold is already gone from the suspension parts.



The fork bottoms were sandblasted, polished up a bit with stainless steel wool, and clear-coated. Clear-coating, and painting in general, is a real pain in the butt when the daytime high temp is 27, night time low is -5!

The Rims are next!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Carter Pewterschmidt View Post
I will still offer you a favor. If that intake doesn't work out I have a spare one I can send you.
Well thanks! Very generous of you. I am hoping mine works out... and I'm not sure why it wouldn't. I will keep it in mind!

Cheers,
Christian
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Current Bikes: 2002 XR650L, Nighthawk, 1986 Honda XL600R, 1988 Hondasuki KLNX250R, 1988 BMW R100GS (dead)
Previous Bikes: Honda XL250R (2 of them), Honda XL600R, Kawasaki KLR600, BMW K1100LT, BMW R60/6, BMW K75, Husqvarna 430XC
Click HERE for my Cummins 4BT International Scout build thread www.christianristow.com
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Old 01-06-2013, 01:09 PM   #13
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Speaking of painting... I have been working on my gas tank.



I decided to try to work with my tank, rather than buy a Clarke tank, for a few reasons....

1) Probably the most important reason... I think Honda REALLY got it right with the shape of this tank. I just think it looks RIGHT.

2) The cost of Bondo, sandpaper, and paint is still about 25% of the cost of a Clarke tank.

3) Fun project.

I might upgrade my fuel capacity with a Clarke tank at some point in the future, especially if I start really doing some trips with this bike. We'll see.

By the way, this is the look I am currently thinking I will go with on the tank:



I am open to suggestions.... although I can't promise to take any of them!!

Cheers,
Christian
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Current Bikes: 2002 XR650L, Nighthawk, 1986 Honda XL600R, 1988 Hondasuki KLNX250R, 1988 BMW R100GS (dead)
Previous Bikes: Honda XL250R (2 of them), Honda XL600R, Kawasaki KLR600, BMW K1100LT, BMW R60/6, BMW K75, Husqvarna 430XC
Click HERE for my Cummins 4BT International Scout build thread www.christianristow.com
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Old 01-06-2013, 04:13 PM   #14
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Just wanted to say you do good clean work. I am in the process of doing my XL/XR hybrid.
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Old 01-06-2013, 04:15 PM   #15
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looking good!
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