1974 Honda XL250 Restoration

Discussion in 'Old's Cool' started by Grimes, Sep 29, 2010.

  1. Grimes

    Grimes ΜΟΛ&#

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2010
    Oddometer:
    31
    Location:
    Arizona
    So, I'm starting my 1974 Honda XL250 restoration.

    I got the 1974 complete bike and the 1972 parts bike for $750. Yeah I may have payed a little much but I've really wanted one and they do not come up very often around here.

    I'm restoring the 1974, and it had a few missing parts and dings but that adds character. It runs good and rides good.

    I've so far bought most of the missing parts and a manual for a total so far of $284.31.

    I have about another $100 or less to go before its done.

    I'm doing a complete restoration of it. That means stripping the frame, painting it, replacing parts, cleaning, etc.

    I will be updating on my progress and uploading pictures starting this weekend.
    #1
  2. Motoduc1

    Motoduc1 backtrackvideo.com

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2006
    Oddometer:
    994
    Location:
    Nebraska
    You wanted one, so it doesn't matter what you paid for the bike or parts. Good luck!
    #2
  3. crazydrummerdude

    crazydrummerdude Wacky Bongo Boy

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2006
    Oddometer:
    7,666
    Location:
    El Segundo, CA
    I'll sell you a running 1980 XL125S for $749. :deal :lol3
    #3
  4. Grimes

    Grimes ΜΟΛ&#

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    Aug 24, 2010
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    :lol3 Thanks guys.

    The guy before me put a unifilter on it and didn't rejet, so it was having trouble idling. I got the original airbox off ebay and a airfilter from honda. I also got a carb rebuild kit, plus a new gasket for the intake boot. So it should have a smooth idle after thats all done.

    Plus it came with a new head gasket and the rubber tube gasket for oil pressure to the head in original wrapping. So i will be doing that as well.
    #4
  5. pckopp

    pckopp Aged Adventurer

    Joined:
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    Oddometer:
    1,312
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    It's more fun if you just throw the receipts in a box and don't add them up.

    Excellent project. Mine has been on hold for a bit, but when I get back to the same state it's in, I'll work on it some more.

    Enjoy!
    #5
  6. TheRadBaron

    TheRadBaron Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2010
    Oddometer:
    494
    Location:
    Central Illinois
    Those early XL250s are cool bikes. I had wanted one since I was about 14, riding around the countryside of Illinois on an XL125. I like uniqueness in bikes, so the fact that they were one of the earliest 4-valve production bikes really stuck out as cool in my mind (I know there have been 4-valve motors since the teens, but I mean readily available, mass produced 4-valvers).
    I snagged a slightly ratty but mostly there '72 model last year and got it running. I rode it around for a while and had a lot of fun, but I must say that I was a bit disappointed with the motor. It seemed like the extra valves took away some of the low-end grunt that I expected a 250 single to have, without giving anything back on the top end. Granted, the factory state of tune is very mild and I bet there's a lot of untapped potential. It was still a great bike. Very user-friendly and fun to ride. I planned on keeping it, but I ended up trading it for a '76 Yamaha XT500. I had always wanted one of those too, but even more. I'm still working on that one.
    Good luck with the restoration. I'm looking forward to the pictures.
    #6
  7. Grimes

    Grimes ΜΟΛ&#

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2010
    Oddometer:
    31
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    Arizona
    Well, I started working on it this weekend.

    Took off both side covers, cleaned the old oil/sludge out of the bottom of the crankcase and cleaned the coarse filter and the centrifugal filter.

    My heart sank when I took the left cover off and saw the clutch actuating lever. I guess some water had gotten in there long ago and begun to corrode the magnesium. It was a mix of old grease, oil and corrosion. Well, I took it all apart and cleaned it the best I could. Its a little pitted but not through. I greased it all up and it pivots 10x better now. I then took the clutch plates apart, cleaned/inspected them, then put it all back together.


    Then did a full carburetor rebuild with new gaskets, needle, jets, etc. That's about 40% of the work.

    But I forgot to put new oil in it before I left, oh well..., its not being ridden anyways.

    Sucks I didn't get any pictures.

    Now, next time will be replacing the head gasket on the engine.

    I found out also that the engine is a 1972, so I will be transferring most of the parts off the 1974 frame to the 1972 frame. Its in much better shape as well with me only needing to weld on the 2 tank studs.
    #7
  8. Grimes

    Grimes ΜΟΛ&#

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2010
    Oddometer:
    31
    Location:
    Arizona
    Sorry I've been busy guys, here's an update on the bike

    Got the frame all stripped down today and replaced the fork oil just cause. Also had to switch out the springs inside with some good extra ones I had as they were rusted really bad. But all is good now.

    Here's pictures of the parts and such. Bike came with new tires and a new chain, so I'm pretty happy, plus the entire extra parts bike including the extra entire engine makes me even happier for replacement parts as needed.

    A few days ago I won a 1975 XL250 fuel tank with cap and petcock on ebay for $5.00+$15.00 shipping. Inside is brand new looking, outside is good condition with a small dent on the right side. Comes with the petcock I've been needing. (not pictured)

    Then I got the rear grab bar with the turn signal mounts for $19 on ebay. (not pictured)

    As you can see, I already put the two fuel tank mounting studs on the frame that was missing them, now I just have to weld that small hole on the muffler, get the rest of the parts, replace seals and gaskets for top end, paint the frame and engine, and put it all back together. Then start her up.

    * That is my fathers pristine 1968 CT90 in one of the pictures.


    http://s1182.photobucket.com/albums/x447/grimessu/XL250%20Restoration%2011%207%202010/

    Got the final list compiled of what I need to do.

    Ebay

    1.) Headlight
    2.) Complete Gasket/o-ring kit

    Honda

    1.) Parts adding up to $30.42 + shipping

    Local stores/online

    1.) Rotella T 15w-40 oil
    2.) Fuse cover
    3.) Fuse holder
    4.) New plastic connectors for wiring
    5.) Hondabond HT
    6.) Bel-ray molylube 65
    7.) Bel-ray waterproof grease
    8.) Battery

    Make at home

    1.) Tach cable holder
    2.) Blue cover for High Beam indicator
    3.) Screw for muffler shield

    Work on bike once I get all parts

    1.) Degrease/Clean frame and frame parts
    2.) Remove rust from frame and frame parts
    3.) Paint Frame and clear coat and paint frame parts
    4.) Clean up outside of fuel tank and touch up paint/clear coat
    5.) Replace gaskets/oil seals/o-rings for top end
    6.) Set timing and points
    7.) Put wiring and parts back into frame
    8.) Weld small hole in muffler
    9.) Put engine back in frame
    10.) Fill engine with oil
    11.) Add gas
    12.) Start her up and test ride around block


    Also somewhere in here

    1.) Go to DMV and apply for bonded title (or if they have a record for a previous owner, get title from them)

    I know I shouldn't have bought without title but I couldn't resist as these bikes don't come up often around here. I have Bill of Sale and everything though. The frame was checked and not stolen.
    #8
  9. Bendernz

    Bendernz Torrential

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2009
    Oddometer:
    567
    Location:
    Auckland, New Zealand
    Subscribed. These were great bikes and I always felt the original XL250 motosport was better than the second, centure port/carb version. In fact I got in hot water with the Honda importers by road testing the centre port for a newspaper and describing it as a step backwards.
    #9
  10. Zeke Markham

    Zeke Markham Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2010
    Oddometer:
    125
    Location:
    LAX
    I have a high beam indicator light minus the blue cover from a 75 if you want it. PM me your address and I'll see if I can dig it up and drop it in the mail.
    #10
  11. Grimes

    Grimes ΜΟΛ&#

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2010
    Oddometer:
    31
    Location:
    Arizona
    Thanks Zeke, pm sent.
    #11
  12. Grimes

    Grimes ΜΟΛ&#

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2010
    Oddometer:
    31
    Location:
    Arizona
    Got some good news.

    I had the police run the frame i'm using for the restoration and it came back as not stolen (not registered too, but its if it was stolen or not i wanted to know most). I'm good to do a bonded title on it.
    #12
  13. Bobblehead

    Bobblehead Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2009
    Oddometer:
    100
    If the new/replacement part works, I take it upon myself to throw the receipt out. :lol3 No use crying over spilled milk, or cash dumped into a bike.
    #13
  14. Grimes

    Grimes ΜΟΛ&#

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2010
    Oddometer:
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    Location:
    Arizona
    you mean like $323.48 with another $80-$100 to go :deal
    #14
  15. Grimes

    Grimes ΜΟΛ&#

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2010
    Oddometer:
    31
    Location:
    Arizona
    Heres an update, and pics will be posted later tonight. Also this bike is going to have a 1972 frame and engine but it will look like a 1975.

    I got the frame and other parts all painted and am assembling the frame today. I switched the fork tubes for good ones as the other ones were rusted on the inside along with the springs. I dissassembled and cleaned the rear shocks and used hose clamps as spring compressors. :evil I then made a high beam indicator cover. I rebuilt the petcock also.

    Now heres a list of the remaining stuff

    Ebay

    1.) Headlight
    2.) Complete Gasket/o-ring kit

    Honda

    1.) Parts adding up to $30.42 + shipping

    Local stores/online

    1.) Rotella T 15w-40 oil
    2.) New plastic connectors for wiring
    3.) Hondabond HT
    4.) Bel-ray molylube 65
    5.) Battery

    Make at home

    1.) Tach cable holder
    2.) Screw for muffler shield

    Work on bike once I get all parts

    1.) Replace head gasket/oil seals/o-rings for top end
    2.) Set timing and points
    3.) Put wiring and parts back into frame
    4.) Weld small hole in muffler
    5.) Put engine back in frame
    6.) Fill engine with oil
    7.) Add gas
    8.) Start her up and test ride around block
    9.) Go to DMV and apply for bonded title (or if they have a record for a previous owner, get title from them)
    #15
  16. Grimes

    Grimes ΜΟΛ&#

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2010
    Oddometer:
    31
    Location:
    Arizona
  17. big adv

    big adv I need supervision

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    May 26, 2007
    Oddometer:
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    Location:
    Kelowna, BC. CND
    With photobucket, if you put you pointer over the pic, a drop down box comes up, the last option in the box is 'IMG code' , left click on the code, it will copy, then paste it into your post

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    #17
  18. Grimes

    Grimes ΜΟΛ&#

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2010
    Oddometer:
    31
    Location:
    Arizona
    Update time.

    Got the engine all back together. It was a real pain in the ass getting the piston back into the cylinder. I went to a motorcycle parts yard and found most of the missing parts I needed along with the tach cable holder for $5. Redid/rewraped all the wiring including new plastic connectors, and got two original keys for my bike on ebay.


    Here's the pics


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    #18