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FixThe's 1981 XS650SH

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by fixthe, Aug 27, 2020.

  1. fixthe

    fixthe XS650 Enthusiast

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    Son of a...

    Can anybody post a photo of how their bulb and rim mount work? As I was riding the bulb looked like it was going to fall out the front of the bike. Inside my bucket were two long screws that fell out of place and I see there are three tabs. Should these just have a nut on the back of them or is there a place to actually screw into? I didn't touch this part at all so they must have been loose from Mike's and rattled free..

    I've looked at the parts diagram but am not really seeing what Im looking for.
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Aug 31, 2020
    MaxPete likes this.
  2. 5twins

    5twins XS650 Guru Top Contributor

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    I think the parts drawing shows things pretty well .....

    [​IMG]

    It appears the retaining ring (#8) has come loose from the backing ring (#11). These two parts get screwed together, trapping the headlight between them. This is done with 3 short screws (#19) and there are no nuts. The holes in ring #11 are threaded.
     
    MaxPete likes this.
  3. MaxPete

    MaxPete Lucille, Betty, Demi & Gretel: I ask, THEY decide. XS650.com Supporter Top Contributor

    Stick at it fixthe - you're getting there and the old gal has given you just a sample of how much fun she can be!

    Cheers,

    Pete
     
    fixthe likes this.
  4. fixthe

    fixthe XS650 Enthusiast

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    Ahh got it, thanks. Just took the light all apart. Doing it roadside yesterday the screws seemed really loose going in that way so I thought there should be something on the back side to hold them there. Now with it all open I see they stay pretty loose until it's really tightened down.

    Thanks Pete! Lack of time and energy leads me to asking dumb questions, but I appreciate the support from everyone helping out!
     
    MaxPete likes this.
  5. 5twins

    5twins XS650 Guru Top Contributor

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    Notice the 3 little screws get lock washers too (#20).
     
  6. fixthe

    fixthe XS650 Enthusiast

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    Yes - I'm assuming those fell out of the bucket along with the third screw as I was riding yesterday. I'll get some on there this week
     
  7. MaxPete

    MaxPete Lucille, Betty, Demi & Gretel: I ask, THEY decide. XS650.com Supporter Top Contributor

    There are NO dumb questions - just folks who are climbing the learning curve and others who can give them a hand.
    Ask away...
    Pete
     
    fixthe likes this.
  8. 5twins

    5twins XS650 Guru Top Contributor

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    Yes, it is a learning curve and as you're finding out, this old bike will take every opportunity it can to teach you a new lesson, lol. Being an old bike, even if it looks good, you really need to go through the thing when you get one. Check all the nuts and bolts, check all the wiring and connections. You will ward off many potential future problems by doing this.
     
    MaxPete likes this.
  9. fixthe

    fixthe XS650 Enthusiast

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    Update that is uninteresting to anyone, but I'm using this as a log so I can look back and see what's gone on with the bike.

    Was really hoping to get some work done over winter but life with a new baby is pretty hectic and there just wasn't the time. Fired up the bike last week to make sure everything was good before riding season starts up here and it seemed to be, so yesterday I bought insurance, went home for my first ride and... no go. It's got two problems:

    One - I'm back to running on one cylinder. If I pull the left spark plug cap mostly off and hold it there it runs properly, but if I place the cap on it doesn't. I'm going to give everything a good cleaning in the next day or so to see if maybe something is corroded, but I suppose I should order in a new coil so I can install new leads, as was suggested I look into last year. Unfortunately, shipping delays due to COVID are still a problem up here so I'm hoping I can get the bike running without it, but even if I do I'll order in a MP08 and new leads to be on the safe side any way.

    Two - the clutch won't disengage. Can't remember if I talked about this before, but this was a problem after changing my bars - the cable is just too long. I re-routed it and was able to get it to work last season, but for some reason after sitting over winter it's not working again. Tried adjusting it, lubing it, and moving it around without pulling off the tank, but I'm bottoming out my lever and it still won't disengage. I might be able to play around with the routing again, but screw it - ordered a proper shorter cable and it should arrive tomorrow.
     
    Jim and gggGary like this.
  10. fixthe

    fixthe XS650 Enthusiast

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    Alright - small update that I have a question about.

    Called my mechanic and turns out he had proper coils in stock and he sold me one for cheaper than I could grab a MP08 for + shipping, so grabbed that and will install later today.

    The boots that the wires go into have smaller little rubber cylinders inside them that the wires fit through very tightly. Where does this go? Inside the boot? Outside? Not sure what the purpose of it is - to stop the wire from pulling out or sealing from water. Will edit this with a photo in a minute.
     

    Attached Files:

    Machine likes this.
  11. Machine

    Machine Race the wind Top Contributor

    You got this
     
    gggGary likes this.
  12. fixthe

    fixthe XS650 Enthusiast

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    Sweet, thanks.

    Wasn't sure if I couldn't see it in photos because it was inside or if they aren't used all the time.
     
    gggGary and Machine like this.
  13. fredintoon

    fredintoon Fred Hill, S'toon. Top Contributor

    Hi fixthe,
    assemble the sparkplug wires like Machine sez.
    Check if your coil has woodscrew-style things inside it so that you need to screw the plug wires onto them
    or if it has flat surfaces inside that need to have the plug wire's insulation cut back so the exposed conductor wire
    can be fanned out like a chimney-sweep's brush to make contact.
     
  14. fixthe

    fixthe XS650 Enthusiast

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    Thanks - wood screw type deal. Just installed it on my lunch break, coil works but I have the same problem. That's alright, I wanted to replace the coil eventually anyway.

    So I guess theres either something wrong with the spark plug or the cap. After work I'll swap the two spark plugs to narrow down the problem.
     
  15. fredintoon

    fredintoon Fred Hill, S'toon. Top Contributor

    Hi fixthe,
    check if you have resistor-style sparkplugs AND resistor style plug caps. Bike needs EITHER but NOT both.
    You can find non-resistor plug caps in the snowmobile aisle (in Canada, anyway)
     
  16. fixthe

    fixthe XS650 Enthusiast

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    They are resistor caps with non-resistor spark plugs. I went that way because the resistor plugs aren't carried here and need to be brought in. The BP7ES plugs are pretty easy to find.
     
    gggGary likes this.
  17. 5twins

    5twins XS650 Guru Top Contributor

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    Slide the threaded coil cap onto the plug wire, then the rubber "doughnut". Now screw the plug wire into the coil until it's tight. Then slide the rubber doughnut up tight against the coil and thread the cap on. The "doughnut" is sort of a compression fitting. Screwing the cap tight against it squeezes it tight on the wire. This both seals it and holds it in. I like to prep the ends of my plug wires like so before installing to insure good contact. Do this on the spark plug cap end of the wire too .....

    [​IMG]

    In fact, if you still have the original spark plug caps, that could be the issue. They do go bad. Or maybe the connection to the wire is just bad, loose or corroded. If the caps are original you should replace them. The NGK LB05F is the preferred cap of choice .....

    [​IMG]

    Even if you don't have new caps, I would re-do the cap to wire connection. Cut 1/4" to 1/2" off the plug wire to get to some fresh wire, then trim another 1/8" or so of the insulation off so you can fan the wire strands out. I also like to coat the ends of the wires with dielectric grease before screwing them into the coil or plug cap. I put it in a few more places as well .....

    [​IMG]
     
    gggGary likes this.
  18. fixthe

    fixthe XS650 Enthusiast

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    Beaut - thank you.

    As for the rest of your post, those are the plugs I'm using and that's also how I've prepped the ends. You made this suggestion back on page one of this thread and I took it then when I was replacing the caps! Only slept on your advice for swapping out the coil so I could use new wires.

    *Edit:* just swapped my plugs - sure enough it's the plug that's the problem. I'll either try giving it a clean or just grab one tomorrow depending how my day looks.
     
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2021
    TwoManyXS1Bs and gggGary like this.
  19. fixthe

    fixthe XS650 Enthusiast

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    Urg. Gonna need to get a hand from a couple of friends.

    BP7ES spark plugs are impossible to find here, so I did some calling around and was able to track down two LZFH spark plug caps, so now I can go with BP7ES plugs, which are stocked everywhere. So I popped those on yesterday, but somehow I seem to have stripped one of my spark plug holes. Doesn't look too bad, just the first couple threads, but this is something I don't want to mess with myself, so I gave a call to a car mechanic buddy and he is going to come down Tuesday and take a look and re-thread the hole if needed.

    I also installed my new clutch cable, but still can't get the clutch to disengage. I'm going to keep messing around this afternoon and see if I can get it to go, but if not I've got a motorcycle friend who will come down this week to give me a hand with it. I've done a bunch of reading on the clutch here but I'm thinking its way more likely that I don't have the cable routed or adjusted properly as opposed to some other issue, and probably something someone with more experience could figure out quickly and walk me through things.
     
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