1985 Honda XL600R Restoration Project

Discussion in 'Thumpers' started by Duff Man, Nov 23, 2009.

  1. Duff Man

    Duff Man Adventurer

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2009
    Oddometer:
    56
    Location:
    Western Newfoundland
    Well I've have a few good runs on my recently purchased 1985 XL600R, but it's time now to take her to the fire hall work shop, where it will undergo a winters worth of fixing, upgrading, painting, adjusting, and polishing, in preparation for it's planned voyage to the Trans Lab Hwy among other places in the coming riding season.

    After I found the bike wouldn't start a few days ago, I decided that there's no time like the present to start the rebuild, although I didn't intend to start until the snow was down, and the riding season came to a end, I figured since it had a electrical problem, I might as well start the restoration now.

    And here it begins. . enjoy the pics and rebuild, I will be updating this as the restoration progresses.



    Day 1: November 22/09



    The bike in it's initial condition. overall not too toooo bad, but in serious need of a restoration.
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    And here is what I've been at today. Step 1: get the bike running again before I strip it down to the frame.
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    Engine cover removed, and stator and attacked pickup coil(pulse generator) taken out to be tested (which it failed) and for it to be repaired/replaced. One broken bolt, which I fought with for a 1/2 hr or more, but in the end, it decided to twist off anyways, I expect this to be the first, but not the last;).
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    The ole guy stopped in with his meter to test the resistance values of the stator and pickup coil, confirming it to be the problem.
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    #1
  2. Owyhee

    Owyhee Enlarged to show detail

    Joined:
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    There's quite a few other XL folks doing restorations on thier bikes this winter. I think it attests to the quality and durability of the original design with the bikes now well over 20 years old.

    What sort of mods (if any) are you planning?

    "O"
    #2
  3. Reposado1800

    Reposado1800 Juicy J fan!

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    That is a great bike to start with. Wow. It shouldn't need much to get it to 100%.
    #3
  4. dtysdalx2

    dtysdalx2 PITA but useful

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    My favorite! Restoratin' thread. :clap

    DIY kicks ass.

    Did a bolt twist off in the case? I don't see how. They are usually grade 12.8 and screw into aluminum. Unless someone put a cheap one in there.

    Try heat and a vice grip. Maybe some penetrating oil too.
    #4
  5. Duff Man

    Duff Man Adventurer

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    Yesterday, Nov 28th Progress

    Really made some progress with the tear down. Luckily I didn't get any serious unexpected (or expected) surprises such as you would usually get with such a project. I did find some play in the rear suspension bearings which is not a big deal at all, and a small crack in the cross member where the seat rests (prob a result of someones big ole arse). . .but yeah. .nothing I cant deal with pretty easily.

    Here's the pics.

    Start of the day,
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    Removed the tank (again) and exhaust.
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    Minus a faring and front fender
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    Pretty much took this one for my own use on assembly LOL
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    The biggest pain of the day was removing the air box:grrr: I ended up having to remove the rear shock to move the air box ahead enough to get it out of the frame, and of course all the bolts were seized in the bushings for the rear suspension.
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    Startin to look a lil nude:cool:
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    Load of parts to be cleaned and restored.
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    The current status of the bike. Next day is engine removal.
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    and there she be till next time.
    #5
  6. VO1MX

    VO1MX Been here awhile

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    Dec 1, 2007
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    North Bedeque
    Hey Duffman, do I see a Nova Scotia DMV sticker on the front fork of your bike?
    #6
  7. Duff Man

    Duff Man Adventurer

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    Oct 14, 2009
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    Western Newfoundland
    Yup.. her last owner was from NS
    #7
  8. Bob Tosi

    Bob Tosi Long timer

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    Chico, Ca
    Oh this is entirely to cool.:freaky This is what I am doing to my '79 XR 250 I picked up awhile ago. Very nice work you have going here.:clap
    #8
  9. dirtyoffroad

    dirtyoffroad Been here awhile

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    I had this same bike,when it started burning oil I parked it and got an XR model.Except for the engine ,I should have everything else still
    #9
  10. jgrady1982

    jgrady1982 Been here awhile

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    Dec 16, 2008
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    Cleveland, Ohio
    :beer
    Subscribed!

    good work so far!
    #10
  11. Duff Man

    Duff Man Adventurer

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    Yeah a bolt did break off in the top of the case. I worked it for aprox a 1/2 hr and it just decided to break. I believe whoever had the stador cover off last time must have put this bold in cross threaded.

    I will have the engine out in a couple days and will deal with the broken bolt with the engine on the bench.... stay tuned :ear
    #11
  12. Reposado1800

    Reposado1800 Juicy J fan!

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    Soon it is going to look like this.


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    [​IMG]
    #12
  13. JoshMan01

    JoshMan01 Adventurer

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    It wasn't any easier on my 350. What a pain in the ass. I ended up fighting with mine until it came out. I put it back in last night. Ugh...

    The complete restoration on mine is going to have to wait. I was just given a TW200 that needs an engine rebuild.

    If you find a source for the paint (code r-119) let me know!
    #13
  14. Duff Man

    Duff Man Adventurer

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    December 2/09

    I spent a little time last night working on the bike. I got the engine removed, and it came out like butter;) Then I went on to remove the rear swing arm, but hit a snag when the pivot shaft was seized in the bushing. So not having a bras punch on hand I scraped that idea in risk of beating up the bold until I got the frame home where I have the tools needed to get the seized pivot bolt out, and where it will be sand blasted, primed, and painted all original colors.



    Before:
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    After:
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    Notice here on the engine there is a aluminum spacer plate between the carb boots and the cylinder. Question: Is this stock, or is this a reducer plate that is used on some bikes (I know it is used on cars) to make the intake holes a little smaller which increases the speed of the air/fuel going into the engine ?? It's not pictured on the exploded view of the engine, which makes me think it may have been added after the fact?
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    Exploded view. . no spacer plate
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    #14
  15. mcma111

    mcma111 Long timer

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    That spaced did not come from the factory.
    #15
  16. InfiniteMiles

    InfiniteMiles Been here awhile

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    Oct 27, 2009
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    117
    Nice work. My guess is the spacer plate is there to reduce bog when going when quickly going to WOT, but don't quote me. I've only ever seen those on two strokes to change the power band.


    Beautiful Hawk as well.
    #16
  17. JoshMan01

    JoshMan01 Adventurer

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    It bolts directly to the cylinder head on my 350. Different animal, but same setup...
    #17
  18. Ghost_Mutant

    Ghost_Mutant looking for bionics

    Joined:
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    Very interesting difference there between my XR5 and the XL6. I have a factory heat insulator plate on both my XR5s (83 and 84). It's not aluminum, but it is a phenolic type of insulator. I suppose it's to help keep the carbs from getting too warm, but I would have guessed that the rubber in the manifold would be enough by itself. Apparently on the XL6 it is enough, since that's what the manual shows. I have bought a carb manifold/insulator for the XR6 with the dual carbs off of ebay. It also has the extra phenolic plate.

    I'd say your plate is not stock, but I'm surprised to learn the XL6 does not have the phenolic type. The stock plates on my bikes have machined grooves for O ring sealing. It should be interesting to learn what your aluminum plate has for sealing to the head.

    See here for XR5 head parts:
    http://www.cmsnl.com/honda-xr500r-84-us_model7774/partslist/E++0201.html
    The insulator plate is part #9.


    Two more things:
    1) I asked a question about the reed valve on the XL600 thread. No reply yet. So I'd be curious to know if your 85 has the valve. It's shown in your parts diagram in the upper, center left of the diagram. It's the parts surrounded by the rectangle. It's located in a separate and sealed chamber in the valve cover.

    2) Your insulator has a MG3 part code. This is the code for the 83 XR5, and I would have thought that Honda would have changed this to a newer type by 85. When you get your insulator off the head, check to see if it has a cross port machined in it. The diagram shows the 83 insulator/manifold without the machined cross port. Read section 19 of the manual to see how the reed valve worked as designed, and the 83 needs the valve/head cross ports if it lacks the cross port in the manifold. It's on page 19-3 on my 84 XL6 manual pdf.

    It's my understanding that Honda dropped the reed valve for the XR6. And to do this the machined cross port in the insulator/manifold is required (to keep the secondary valve cool during idle and part throttle conditions when the secondary carb is closed).

    I want to eliminate my reed valve because it's a source of oil burning if the valve cover gasket leaks. That's why I bought the XR6 manifold for my 83 XR5 rebuild to replace my stock MG3 manifold.

    Now I'm trying to figure out the best way to plug the reed valve holes/ports that are in the top of my XR5 heads.

    See here for Honda codes:
    http://www.oscarmayer.net/atc/manuals/honda_tips/UNDERSTANDING_HONDA_PART_.PDF

    http://www.cmsnl.com/faq.php?fq_catid=14
    #18
  19. brucifer

    brucifer Long timer

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    That intake plate looks home made to me.
    You can tune an engines power characteristics by shortening or lengthening the intake tract. Was that being tried here? :dunno Don't know if that little bit would change anything. Are the holes the same diameter as the ports?
    Here's one. Maybe the carb to airbox boots shrunk up and the PO fixed that problem with the plate. :lol3
    #19
  20. Ghost_Mutant

    Ghost_Mutant looking for bionics

    Joined:
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    Oddometer:
    727
    Location:
    border of granite & flats
    I should have added a little more info. Here is a link to the 85 XR600 exploded head diagram:
    http://www.cmsnl.com/honda-xr600r-85-us_model883/partslist/E++02.html

    Note that:

    1) reed valve is missing
    2) phenolic plate is between the carb insulator and the head (part #7)
    3) carb insulator/manifold/rubber boot has the machined cross port (part #6)
    This newer style carb manifold requires a special, longer sealing o-ring (part #14)
    However, the part code for this carb manifold is 16211MG3010, note the MG3.

    I'm going to guess that you have this manifold on your 85 XL600. Now, I'm very curious to know if you also have the reed valve on the top of your cylinder head. :D

    When I bought my original 84 XR500 it was smoking on startup. I thought this was for the usual reasons, like stem seals and rings. But when I pulled the carb manifold off, I saw substantial carbon buildup on the secondary intake valve, but the primary was clean. A leaking valve cover gasket was allowing oil to get in the combustion chamber through the open hole above the secondary intake port. This is part of the reed valve setup/system.

    Previous owner didn't deal with it right away, and the secondary intake valve and guide were shot from the carbon buildup, but the primary was still good.

    Since Honda removed the reed valve in the 85 XR6 and just went with the machined cross port carb manifold, this is how I'm going to build my two XR5s.

    I had been asking around to see if any of the XL600 owners had done the same thing (get rid of the reed valve).
    #20