Oregon to Ushuaia on an XR650L

Discussion in 'Epic Rides' started by Ulyses, Oct 29, 2012.

  1. mathews42

    mathews42 Been here awhile

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    I just rolled in to Herm. I'm going to stop by and see your mom tomorrow. 18 hours of driving later... Forgot how much that drive sucks!
  2. Ulyses

    Ulyses Long timer

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    My pleasure man! Thanks again for all of the help. The bike definitely lugs at high altitude though, even with a clean filter. Surprisingly, a lot of my riding has been above 5,000 feet. I may be getting up above 13,000 feet soon; would you recommend re-jetting (I brought extra jets) or just adjusting the mixture screw? By the way, where is the mixture screw? Haha. I'm such a damn noob when it comes to mechanical stuff.

    I did! I was a little worried the first time I did it though; it looked like it was permanently inside the foam. Thanks for the reminder.
  3. Ulyses

    Ulyses Long timer

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    I hate to bring this up again, but how long have you been working on your undergrad degree? Going on six years now? Hmmmm......have fun freezing your ass off in the Dakotas. :D
  4. Ulyses

    Ulyses Long timer

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    Nice! Say hi to everyone for me. I think my parents may have went to the mountains for Christmas, but it wouldn't hurt to check.
  5. mathews42

    mathews42 Been here awhile

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    Yeah I'll check for sure, it a always nice to see your fam the one time a year I make it up to the NW
  6. Spud Rider

    Spud Rider Long timer

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    You're welcome. :D Trust me, a lot of people have been tricked by that Uni air filter, especially because of the foam strap located on the bottom of the filter, and because the "button" fits so tightly on the post. :rolleyes

    One doesn't need to adjust the pilot mixture screw for different altitudes. If your bike has been running well, your pilot mixture screw (PMS) is probably set correctly.

    I am using a size 55 pilot jet, and a size 155 main jet in my XR650L's carburetor. My bike runs well from 4,600 to 9,200 feet above sea level. Another XR650L owner has reported his bike runs well from sea level to 14,000 feet above sea level using the same carburetor jets. However, a lot depends on whether you have performed Dave's Mods, removed the air box snorkel, et cetera. Neverthless, the constant velocity (CV) carburetor on the XR650L does a pretty good job compensating for altitude.

    What jets are currently installed in your carburetor? You might want to go a size lower, at least on the main jet, when you begin riding at 13,000 feet above sea level. You can change the carburetor jets without removing the carburetor. :nod I suggest you see how well the bike runs at high altitudes before you decide to change carburetor jets. If you need any help, don't hesitate to ask. We can tell you how to change the jets easily. :deal

    Spud :wave
  7. ItchyFeet

    ItchyFeet Too young to resist

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    Just a quick thanks for the RR. Inspiring and truly enjoyable. Merry Christmas, Feliz Navidad and safe travels!
  8. crashmaster

    crashmaster ow, my balls!

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    From now on you are going to see a lot of higher elevations until well into Argentina and Chile.

    Peru can be a bit problematic depending on the route. In the Andes you will see elevations from sea level to over 15,000 feet and back, sometimes in the same day, as on the Cajamarca to Celendin route as well as others. Tough to jet properly for that stuff, and there can be quite a bit of it.

    Bolivia can be consistently pretty high depending on the routes you take, particularly in the SW Altiplano where it is rare to see anything under 12-13,000 feet. Eventhough the CV carbs are pretty good with elevation changes, the bike might like a leaner main jet for this stuff.

    [​IMG]



    Glad you are enjoying Colombia, looks like youre having a great time. The whole crew in Medellin is awesome.:freaky On my way down it took me two months to get out of there, and on the way back it took another two months, but that was mainly because of the girl. :lol3 During my travels, meeting new people and making new friends became the highlights and most cherished memories. There are a lot of really good people in the world and they far outnumber the assholes.

    Youre doing a fantastic job on the RR, thanks for taking all of us along. I think you have the right idea amigo, make plans day by day, but even then those daily plans will get shit canned from time to time. That's beauty of not planning, you can go wherever, whenever. :ricky Youre just getting a small taste of things to come. Epic stuff awaits you, a metric shit ton of it.

    Ride fast, take lots of chances. :lol3 Just kidding of course, but its tough not to do down there.

    salud, Vin
  9. junkyardroad

    junkyardroad Been here awhile

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    Thanks for posting this RR from here too. I found this thread after reading your question about valve adjustment on the XRL thread several days ago. Doing a ride like yours is one of my life goals, very high on the bucket list. So, while I'm stuck here shoveling snow in the Colorado rockies with 2 kids and a wicked mortgage, I have been remembering this story a few pages at a time and secretly planning for the day I can go too. Living vicariously thru your ride, keep it coming! The writing, pictures, and the attitude that comes thru in your writing make this one of the best so far.

    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from the high country.
  10. Ulyses

    Ulyses Long timer

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    We de smogged, de snorkled, dave's modded, and put on the UNI. I can't remember what jets we put in; I want to say it was 58/155? Lee, maybe you could chime in?

    I have the factory jets which are a lot lower if I remember correctly, but I'll have to look at them to see how big they were. I don't remember off the top of my head.

    I do know how to re-jet; however, I didn't think about doing it with the carb still on. That's makes sense. Thanks for the idea.

    I had heard that you could adjust the mixture screw to comensate a little bit for altitude, maybe you can elaborate on that? Is that true?

    The bike runs weak at high altitude; i've had it up to 10,000 feet a few times now and you definetly can feel the sluggishness. It also doesn't idle well at high altitude. If you don't keep it reved a little while you are idling, it tends to die pretty quickly.

    Like crashmaster said, I'm about to start getting really high. Not sure what kind of adjustments I want to make yet (if any), but I'm looking for ideas.
  11. Ulyses

    Ulyses Long timer

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    Thanks man! You too!
  12. Ulyses

    Ulyses Long timer

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    That picture is nuts! My little 650 is probably just going to wheeze and die up there!:lol3 I'll give it a shot though.

    You are totally right: the best part so far has been the people. Wouldn't trade those meetings for anything.

    I wish we had gotten to meet you in San Diego. Justin was talking about going to meet you at a bar or something, but then you had a problem with your place in Alaska and had to jet. Or at least that's what he told me.

    I'm going to have to hit you up soon for some advice on the Salar. Did you hit that up solo?
  13. Mossy-Back

    Mossy-Back Brown Falcon

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    You have 55/158 jets in it. Same as I put in mine (Lee did it around the same time I did).
  14. crashmaster

    crashmaster ow, my balls!

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    Basically the carb works like this......

    The idle mixture screw controls the air/fuel in the pilot jet. Hopefully you have a screw with the adjustment knob on it so you dont need to use a screwdiver or twist the carb in the boots. It makes things way easier and much faster so if you dont have one , I would probably try to get one if it will work with your bike. Although getting a good one can be tricky, some of the cheaper ones like to break off the tip of the needle in the pilot jet if screw it in too tight. I've seen good aftermarket ones and I have also fabricated a quick adjustment knob using he stock screw. Colombia is a perfect place to have something like that done. Might want to find a couple extra screws just for piece of mind or you mess one up during the fabrication process.

    With the bike fully hot up and idling, slowly turn the screw clockwise (in) until the bike starts to idle rough, then slowly back it out in small steps and the idle will speed up. When you find smoothest and fastest idle on your way out you are properly adjusted. Take the bike for a spin and see how it does.

    You have a pilot jet and a main jet. Is this a Mikuni 41mm CV? You adjust the idle mixture screw as above, then actually change out the main jet to a different size when you need to. There is quite a bit of adjustment on the pilot circuit before you need to actually change the pilot jet. Usually you can turn the carb in the boots to make this an easy process. Not sure if you have enough room in the XRL to do this. I just havent worked on one in many years.

    Up to about half throttle you are mostly on the pilot circuit and as you feed fuel the main jet comes into the system more and more. At WOT you are mostly on the main jet.

    One thing to be careful about is running too lean. Run too lean and you burn up the top end so IMOH if you have to compromise a bit its always better to be slightly rich rather than slightly lean.
  15. Mossy-Back

    Mossy-Back Brown Falcon

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    Oh, and the mixture screw is the one that points straight down on the front of the carb. I can reach mine pretty easily and turn it with or without my riding gloves on.
  16. Ulyses

    Ulyses Long timer

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    Thanks a bunch man! I love colordao! Where are you from?

    Just to give you hope, I've met all sorts of people, with different life situations on this trip. Justin was the youngest at 27, and this old scottish guy named Stan was the oldest at 66. I've met guys who were married with jobs and mortgages who managed to work out a way to do this trip and keep everything together back home. There's old retired guys who are riding around the world on their pensions and young guys like me who worked like dogs for years to save up, then quit their jobs and went riding! Whatever your situation, if you really want it, you can make it happen.

    Are you on an XRL? I'm toying with the idea of taking my XRL up to colorado next summer (if it survives this trip) and spending a few weeks rallying between 14er trailheads and trying to knock out the rest of the peaks on my list.

    Good luck man! Keep in touch, maybe we could ride sometime!
  17. crashmaster

    crashmaster ow, my balls!

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    Your XR is going to do fine up there, but you will notice the lack of power, and how hard it is to breath. :lol3

    Yeah I had to split for Alaska since the kitchen flooded. That was a mess. Had to even tear up the sub-floor and start over. Memo to self: do not start up a 25 year old dishwasher and promptly leave town for 2 weeks. :lol3 Sorry I didnt get to meet you guys.

    I did most of the Lagunas Route solo. Its not too big a big problem, just take it easy because sections are very remote. I met up with a couple of German friends at Laguna Colorado and rode with them the rest of the way to Chile. They were riding BM 650's and the bikes did just fine, although they had EFI which helps things quite a bit.

    When youre ready for probably more info than you want, just lemme know. There is a lot of do not miss stuff in Peru and Bolivia IMO.
  18. Spud Rider

    Spud Rider Long timer

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    I don't want to detract from your ride report with technical discussions. If you wish, I (and others) will be happy to answer your tech questions on the XRL thread. However, if you don't mind, I'll answer your questions here as well.

    The pilot mixture screw (PMS) is the screw with the big knob on the front of the bottom of your carburetor. Did you trim the tab off this knob when you performed Dave's Mods?

    [​IMG]

    Adjusting the PMS might help your engine run better at higher altitudes. Always adjust this screw when your engine is hot (not warm, hot). :deal After the engine is at operating temperatures, adjust the PMS with the engine idling. Turn the screw inward (clockwise) until the idle speed becomes rough. Then turn the screw outwards (counterclockwise) until the idle speed picks up, and the engine idles smoothly. Don't go beyond this point, or the PMS will be set too rich. You will know the PMS is too rich if your bike starts to idle very high when you stop the bike at intersections, et cetera. If you observe this phenomenon, turn the PMS inward a bit until the problem disappears. The PMS should end up about 2-2.5 turns from the fully seated position.

    If the PMS is much less than 2 turns out from the fully seated position, your pilot jet is too rich, and you need to install a smaller, leaner pilot jet. If your PMS is much more than 2.5 turns out from the fully seated position, your pilot jet is too lean, and you need to install a larger, richer pilot jet.

    If you loosen both clamps on the carburetor, you can rotate the carburetor in place so the float bowl faces the right side of the motorcycle. First drain the float bowl. Then loosen the clamps and rotate the carb. If the carburetor won't rotate far enough, remove the choke cable from the left side of the carburetor. After the carb is rotated, remove the 4 screws which retain the float bowl, and remove the float bowl. Be careful not to drop the slosh baffle, or to lose the pin which secures the carburetor float. As the float rotates downward, you will have access to the carburetor jets.

    The stock jets are:

    Pilot Jet: 52
    Main Jet: 152

    If you bike runs too rich at higher altitudes, I suggest you first try a size 155, main jet, before you drop back to the stock, size 152, main jet. Your size 55, pilot jet will probably work well after you adjust your PMS. If your current pilot jet is too rich, you can drop back to the stock, size 52, pilot jet.

    Spud :wave
  19. Moparmanpete

    Moparmanpete The Cracken has risen!......again

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    Best explanation I have ever heard ^^^^^^^^^^^^ :thumb
  20. Spud Rider

    Spud Rider Long timer

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    Incidentally, if you haven't trimmed the tab from your pilot mixture screw (PMS), it's range of adjustment will be limited. However, one should leave the tab on the PMS itself; don't trim the tab as shown in the photograph below. :huh

    [​IMG]

    Retaining the tab on the PMS facilitates turning the PMS for adjustment. Instead, trim the corresponding tab on the bottom of the carburetor. :deal

    Spud :beer