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Miss November XS2 tribute

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by Raymondo, Jun 13, 2019.

  1. Raymondo

    Raymondo XS650 rider, fettler, setting out on a journey XS650.com Supporter Top Contributor

    Weather here miserable - cold, wet, windy. But getting back into the habit of going in the garage and tackling small jobs.

    Received a boost when Neil the painter brought the XS750 headlamp shell back, now painted in the same fetching hue as the tank . . .


    . . . thus giving a wee bit more incentive to get on with things.
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2020
    Rasputin, Wulfbyte, Mailman and 9 others like this.
  2. Bewarethemoon

    Bewarethemoon XS650 Addict XS650.com Supporter

    Looks awesome! Really like that colour!
  3. Raymondo

    Raymondo XS650 rider, fettler, setting out on a journey XS650.com Supporter Top Contributor

    Thank you, Daniel. I can honestly say, because it's translucent paint over a silver base, the photos don't do it full justice.

    It would have been nice to have painted headlamp brackets too, as on the 1972 XS2s, but I felt that would be too complicated to get right.
    Wulfbyte, MaxPete, gggGary and 2 others like this.
  4. Raymondo

    Raymondo XS650 rider, fettler, setting out on a journey XS650.com Supporter Top Contributor

    Took a closer look at the XS750 h/l shell. On the one hand, it's deeper than the XS650 item. Which is why I bought it. Although simplified, my homemade wiring harness has a lot of bullet connectors and it was a helluva shove to get everything inside and the shell back on.

    But on the other hand, the XS750 shell has important differences which I have just begun to think about. There's only two holes for wiring to enter the shell and they are both near the top. The XS650 shell has three holes, two of them low down.

    And the adjusting flange (nice word but is it the right term?) that fits to the steady on the bottom yoke is left of centre. XS650 right of centre. Of course. So the old steady won't do.

    Pity I didn't take a good look and think about these things before passing it to the painter. But never mind, will (carefully) fashion an extra wiring hole low down on the new shell for the main harness. And fit the three rubber grommets (another nice term) from the old shell to prevent chafing. And measure up for a new steady.

    Making a steady bracket for the bottom yoke might be more than I can do with hand tools but I can do a tech drawing and take to the engineers in Galashiels. They appear to be enjoying this project so I'm sure they'll be up for a small job on the side.

    Ah well, more quality time in the garage with Miss November.

    Looking forward to quality time on the road.
    Wulfbyte, Mailman, Jim and 3 others like this.
  5. gggGary

    gggGary Stop that! XS650.com Supporter Top Contributor

    Sounds like it's coming together well Raymondo! Can't wait to see it with that gorgeous paint on!
    Wulfbyte, Jim, MaxPete and 1 other person like this.
  6. 5twins

    5twins XS650 Guru Top Contributor

    I scored an XS850 shell but it must differ from the 750 one. It does have 3 holes and they have nice rolled, rounded edges so no need for grommets. Yes, the stay bracket on the bottom is in a different spot so a new connecting bracket will need to be fabbed up, but that's no big deal for me. I have extra 650 ones in the parts stash I can mod .....



    I bought this mostly because it contained a factory H-4 headlight. Aftermarket H-4 lens and bulb assemblies can usually be had for about $25 to $30 so I was happy to pay about the same for a factory set-up, even though it was used.
  7. Raymondo

    Raymondo XS650 rider, fettler, setting out on a journey XS650.com Supporter Top Contributor

    Looks like I would have been better off with one of those!

    One reason it will need rubber grommets is that I'll have to hack a hole meself - mark it out with a felt-tip, drill a few holes, get in there with a hacksaw blade 'freestyle' to link the drilled holes, then tidy and shape off with a file. I'll paint the cut edge, but using the rubber grommets will ward off rust and protect the cables.
    Jim, gggGary and Wulfbyte like this.
  8. Raymondo

    Raymondo XS650 rider, fettler, setting out on a journey XS650.com Supporter Top Contributor

    And that's the method I went with:






    Hardly the hi-tech aerospace technology we're accustomed to on this forum but used what I've got and with a bit of patience achieved the required result. It'll do the job - the main harness passing along on the right under the tank will go in there.

    The hole was finished off fairly round and smooth - better than the photo I took - before trying the grommet for size. Which looks a bit 'squeezed', so might spent a wee bit more time filing . . .
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2020
  9. Raymondo

    Raymondo XS650 rider, fettler, setting out on a journey XS650.com Supporter Top Contributor

  10. Mailman

    Mailman Hardly a Guru Top Contributor

    Very nice Raymond! And you didn’t mess up that pretty paint job! :thumbsup:
    Paul Sutton, MaxPete, Jim and 2 others like this.
  11. Raymondo

    Raymondo XS650 rider, fettler, setting out on a journey XS650.com Supporter Top Contributor

    Oh dear, with me one thing always seems to lead to another.

    Playing about with the new headlamp shell, found the headlamp is not a very easy fit. Took a bit of persuasion. So, thought I'd do a temp fit of the shell on the bike and see how easily or otherwise the headlamp fits when it's all in place. Easier to do it without all the wiring and speedo & tacho cables in the way.

    Then I thought this would be a good time to check whether the bike has tapered roller head bearings. The PO has clearly spent a lot of money so that looks like at least an even-money bet. This is what I found:


    So, no tapered rollers but what looks like new ball bearings and definitely only recently packed with grease.

    Should I just re-assemble and adjust? Or is it really worthwhile to replace with rollers?

    While I think about that, I'll see why the headlamp is so awkward. Might remove the chrome rim and see if it and the shell are the same version of round.

    Onwards and upwards.
    MaxPete, Jim, Mailman and 2 others like this.
  12. gggGary

    gggGary Stop that! XS650.com Supporter Top Contributor

    Tough call on bearings but the lower takes the brunt of the loading. degrease and inspect a lower race look for dimpling where the balls have hammered dents into the race. If any denting is found, time for new bearings, my money is always on tapered bearings.
    Headlight, a bit scary now but the paint is still fresh so has some give, yes round is best, LOL.
    Paul Sutton, MaxPete, Jim and 3 others like this.
  13. Brassneck

    Brassneck XS650 Guru

    Tough call on the bearings...for me, it would be based on mileage and feel. A bike with low miles, and no indication of wear on them, I wouldn't change them out. But an unknown or high mileage bike, yep, I would swap them. But not until I had the front end apart for some reason...like putting on a newly painted headlight bucket. :)
    Paul Sutton, MaxPete, gggGary and 5 others like this.
  14. fredintoon

    fredintoon Fred Hill, S'toon. Top Contributor

    Hi Raymondo,
    best you replace the stock crowded ball headraces with tapered rollers because rollers have mebbe 4X the load capacity.
    Betcha your stock lower races have ball dents just like mine did.
    And put grease nipples in the frame so a re-grease don't need a fork teardown.
    Scoop the balls out of the upper race really carefully, dropping a ball between the 'tree stem & the frame tube will
    logjam the stem in the frame tube and make it a right swine to remove..
  15. Jim

    Jim Beyond the edge, is the unknown. Here be Dragons XS650.com Supporter Top Contributor

    I'm of the opinion that... since you're halfway there, go ahead and replace 'em.
  16. Raymondo

    Raymondo XS650 rider, fettler, setting out on a journey XS650.com Supporter Top Contributor

    Gentlemen, thank you all!

    The consensus is to fit rollers. But the bearing parts - I cleaned the top races - look to be brand new. So, I have just greased generously and put back together. However, I will very likely obtain some rollers and fit them at some point.

    The two lock rings were too loose - was able to undo them with fingers. That would account for the 'click' from the steering when stopping at junctions. Now, I have adjusted them so that the forks are just able to fall to the side if nudged.

    At the moment, main priority is to fit the new headlamp shell, tidy up the wiring, add indicators, get all that back together, clean the brake caliper, fit new hose, hold on, that doesn't sound like a priority, it's a rootin' tootin' to do list.
    MaxPete, Mailman, Jim and 3 others like this.
  17. Welcome new Member! lot's of good folks here. So much to learn! all the best,
    Twin Lewi from Straya
    Brassneck, MaxPete and gggGary like this.
  18. Raymondo

    Raymondo XS650 rider, fettler, setting out on a journey XS650.com Supporter Top Contributor

    Test fitted the new, well XS750, head lamp shell. A bit late for that, perhaps?

    Found that it doesn't fit. Or rather, it doesn't fit with the ignition lock in place. With lock removed, it looks like this:


    But having a headlamp or an ignition lock is just one of them dilemmas, ain't it. Spent too much time overnight thinking about it. Could revert to the original chrome shell? But I already know what a pita cramming the wiring inside, plus the new shell has been painted to match so it would be a pity not to use it.

    Could use different headlamp brackets? Design them myself and find somebody to make them? Possible solution.

    Use a different ignition lock, or mount the lock somewhere else on the bike? I'm sure plenty of bobber people - bobberistas? - have been down that route.

    Then I got to thinking, can I just saw the bottom off the ignition lock? Took the lock apart, and the lower part, the rectangular lump in the photo:


    is mostly the steering lock. Which I can live without.

    Recourse to the the bodger's hacksaw and voila:


    There is that round hole in the underside of the modified ignition lock, but I'll retain the circular plastic piece and grease it. So hopefully no problem . . .

    Rash words, I know.
    MaxPete, Jim, Mailman and 3 others like this.
  19. Raymondo

    Raymondo XS650 rider, fettler, setting out on a journey XS650.com Supporter Top Contributor

    The modified lock prior to refitting:


    That's molybdenum grease around the plastic disc. Should be waterproof-ish.

    The significance of this photo is that both the ignition lock and the headlamp shell are fitted:


    Couldn't get the camera in there but there must be, uhm, 2 mm clearance between the back of the shell and the ignition lock. Something to bear in mind if you decide to go with the XS750 item.

    Anyway, able to check that the wiring will find its way into the shell with extra hole:


    Can now get back to modifying the wiring for indicators.

    Onwards and upwards.
    Paul Sutton, Mailman, MaxPete and 2 others like this.
  20. Machine

    Machine Race the wind Top Contributor

    Nice work again Raymond.
    XS750 bucket fitment noted
    Mailman, MaxPete and Raymondo like this.

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