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New Bike

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by XSLeo, May 22, 2016.

  1. XSLeo

    XSLeo XS650 Guru Top Contributor

    For a while now I have taken these barn find bikes with a title for almost nothing with a grain of salt. I now believe it can be done. A friend at work said a friend of his had an old XS650 Special. He thought it was an 83.
    We went look at it and it was. It even has the lock box and cover.
    A friend of his bought it in 92 and rode it about 1329 miles. The title is in the first guys name, the guy I got it from never got it in his name. This title said the odometer read 4668 miles, it now reads 5997 miles.
    It's a bit dirty, rims show a bit of rust and the head pipes are blued. The exhaust looks very good, no sign of it being down. No rust I can see. Tank looks poor but I have extras.
    It's dirty from setting in a shabby shed but out of the weather.
    For $200 it came home with me.
    He got it from a friend a while back because his friend tried to jumpstart it from his car when the battery was dead.
    I think he had the engine running when he did. After that it wouldn't spark.
    I did a bit of investigating this morning. The ignition fuse in the fuse box is missing, wires just twisted together. The wires just outside the right side switch housing are cut and twisted together.
    Other than that things don't look to bad, With a spare battery everything electrical seems ok except the TCI box and pick ups. The guy had the TCI box off. I tried it on my 81 and the 81 wouldn't run, so bad TCI.
    I took the alternator cover off to check brushes and rotor, I also checked ohms on the pick ups and got no reading. Rotor tested 5.1 ohms no continuity to ground, Brushes very short. Almost to the wear line on one, too the line on the other. Stator tests ok, .9ohm reading with .3-.4 leads reading put it right in the .46 range the book calls for in the book. Those leads bounce back and forth between .3 and .4 ohms. No continuity to ground.
    So far so good. I haven't put a compression tester on it but with the wires twisted together by the right switch when power is on the blue/white wire can touch the ground wire, thus the starter works, seems to have some compression.
    I think with a purchase from Pamcopete and it should run.
    I'll find out soon.
    It's raining a bit today but when the sun shines I'll get some pics.
  2. weekendrider

    weekendrider Iron Horse cowboy Top Contributor

    S.W. MO
    Good luck with the great find.
  3. Hard to pass up a good deal. Sounds good with low miles. Probably the original brushes.:thumbsup:
  4. ThatXS650Guy

    ThatXS650Guy More Sparky than Speed Racer XS650.com Supporter Top Contributor

    North GA
    Nice find.
    It can be done. I've bought two for $200: My 1976 KZ400 with 3,500 miles and my 650 Special with 11,000 miles. Of course both required lots of work and $$ to get going again. Worth every penny...
  5. XSLeo

    XSLeo XS650 Guru Top Contributor

    I misquoted the current mileage. The odo reads 5597. So he only rode it 929 miles
    The front tire is full of cracks/dry rot. I couldn't find a DOT number that told the date so I assume it was made before they started dating them. The rear tire don't look to bad, no cracks, good tread, the date code is 518 so it was made the 51 st week of 1998. They will get changed out before it gets ridden. I may swap the wheels from the 81 just to test ride it.
    With a bit more inspection it may have been bumped or tipped over, in the pics you will see the one rear turn signal is bent down. The front on the same side has a bent rim on the signal so a lense won't set right.
    The front brake lever is bent a bit too.
    I ordered the Pamco from Pete Sunday. I thought I had a bag of spare brushes some where but can't find them. I ordered some off Ebay. $1.61 a pair. They are not XS650 brushes but they are almost the same size. The stock brushes are 4x4.5 mm These are 4x5 mm A bit of sanding and they will fit the holder.
    They don't have the metal mounting strip, So I'll have to unsolder the old brushes from the metal and solder the new ones on. No problem. $1.61 and a bit of work sure beats paying our favorite supplier $17.95 + for a set.
    In the pics you will see it has both lower side covers. The ones that are often missing.
    It doesn't have the lock but I have one around somewhere.
    So here's some pics.

    Attached Files:

  6. Looks good should clean up and be a good ride. Might have been a tip over in the shed that caused the damage. Had a chance to check the filters ?
  7. XSLeo

    XSLeo XS650 Guru Top Contributor

    Not yet, It has way to much oil in it right now, level is well above the upper mark and smells a bit of fuel. I plan on doing an oil change and filter clean real soon. Maybe tomorrow.
    Tip over in the shed is what I suspect. He has a bunch of garden tractor/small engine stuff all over in there. Some damage may have been moving the other stuff around.
    It looks promising. I plan on replacing the bars too. A set of mini apes kinda like I made out of the bars on the 81. About the same height as stock but spread out more. Riding with my elbows tucked in is not what I like.
  8. nj1639

    nj1639 Paleo-simplistic Top Contributor

    Very good! Plus the 650 cam end covers.....carbs are still holding their black too.
    If the compression is good then you scored big time!

    I hear these Heritages get chopped up all the time making them more rarer.......lol
  9. XSLeo

    XSLeo XS650 Guru Top Contributor

    I did get the compression tester on it. The right side got around 120 psi, left around 60 psi.
    I have a 50/50 mix of ATF and Actone I use as a penetrating fluid. I removed the valve adjuster covers and put a generous amount on all the valves an about ten squirts in each plug hole. Let it set awhile then cranked it over to blow out any extra. The right side came up to around 150, left to around 190. The left plug was fouled a bit, right looked ok. They were the wrong plugs. BP6ES.
    I thought with the nasty plug on the left the chamber may have some carbon build up.
    I'm not to worried at this point. I'll get the Pamco and brushes installed and see if it runs. Then ride it a bit and recheck compression. It may clear itself up.
    I'll check the charging too.
    With the Boat battery hooked up as a test battery the only thing I found that didn't work was the turn signal self canceler. It may be ok when it's actually moving down the road.
    I'll go by DMV and pick up one of there Bill of Sale forms, take it back and get it signed as well as the back of the title.
    Should be an easy transfer. once in my name I will probably register it to get plates and ride it for awhile, just to see what I find wrong. Find anything, fix it. While doing this I might try selling it.
  10. lakeview

    lakeview XS650 Guru XS650.com Supporter Top Contributor

    It nice when it happens like that - your lucky day.
  11. XSLeo

    XSLeo XS650 Guru Top Contributor

    Now If tis could happen with an earlier model. Like an XS1 or XS1B. I think one of those might be fun to have just to compare. I have the 75 for a mid years Standard. The 81, this 83 for the later Specials.
    Now I need a pre E-start bike.
  12. angus67

    angus67 Welder's penetrate deeper!!

    Yes.....it is nice to compare the early bikes to the later. My xs1b is deffinatly pepier than my 80 special. The 71 feels like a hot rod compared to the lazy 80.
  13. TwoManyXS1Bs

    TwoManyXS1Bs BBQ Hunter Top Contributor

    Whutcha do is drill a 1/4" hole, about halfway between your left eyeball and earhole.

    That'll drain out all knowledge of electric starters, hydraulic brakes, TCI ignitions, solid-state regulators, safety relays, fuse boxes, aluminum alloy forks, suspension upgrades, idiot lights, automatic headlights, EPA carbs, stepped seats, and rototiller handlebars.

    Then, watch a bunch of Rowan & Martin's "Laugh in", "Beverly Hillbillies", and "Green Acres".

    Now you're ready for an XS1...
    Last edited: May 24, 2016
  14. XSLeo

    XSLeo XS650 Guru Top Contributor

    A bit of an update on my progress on the 83.
    I got the oil drained out of this bike, filters out.
    The sump filter is torn, no gaping hole but torn, I'll try just patching over the mesh on this one. The sump plate came off ok, but the bolt by the side stand I couldn't get a wrench or socket on it without taking the side stand off. Not a problem, needed greasing anyway. I may put an Allen head bolt in place of that one.
    Side filter had a tiny amount of black rubber in it, a small amount of metal flecks. With just 5597 miles it shouldn't have much.
    When I poured the oil out of the drain pan into an old gallon jug there was a bit of metal flecks in there to.
    The sump plate gasket broke when I pulled the sump plate off. It was stuck just around the bolt holes.
    Was the expected crud on the drain plug and filter magnets.
    The oil was a lot high on the dip stick, it smelled faintly of stale gas. The jug I poured it in didn't have markings on it. I used a quart oil jug marked off in 4 ounce increments. It had 2 quarts 22 ounces of oil. Only about 20 ounces too much.
    I had a dragging front brake today as I was moving it around. I'll tear down the M/C and caliper and clean them out. Replace the lines.
    Should make them like new again.
    I think I'll try the Kenda Cruz tires on it. I liked the Kanda Challengers but they didn't last very long, maybe the Cruz will last a bit longer.
    The wiring harness has been worked on. A lot of the outer cover has been stripped away and I found a few splices. Everything electrical seems to work ok, but with the splices and twisted together wires I'll replace it. I have the harness off the 82 parts bike I have, I'll put that one on.
    On the right side controls where the wires were cut and twisted together, I have a right side switch off the parts bike.
    Good to have a parts bike that is vey close to the one your working on.
    Well I guess I'll have to do some shopping now.
  15. Sounds like the usual things need done. If you need any carb parts let me know not using my old bs34. XS John needles.
  16. Over here in Australia we here lots of stories about how good the east coast is for bikes. Every now and then to really punish myself I will have a look on Craig's list etc. pretty ridiculous. That bike in that condition would be 2000USD here.
  17. I looked up the kenda cruse tires at motorcycle superstore. They got good reviews as getting good mileage. $132 for front and rear on sale. Good tread design. Thought I would pass it on.
  18. XSLeo

    XSLeo XS650 Guru Top Contributor

    Another update.
    I got the new Pamco in Friday. Had a fishing tourney to attend Saturday, got home about 3:00 pm, being out in the sun from 6:00 am when you're not used to it is tiring.
    Got home and rested for a bit, well took a nap. Got started on the install around 7:30 pm.
    Went to Pete's ignition site and printed out 7 pages of instructions. With that many instructions I can't see how anyone could screw up an install.
    Anyway I checked the cam ends for crud, looked very clean. Just a tiny bit of oil seepage on the left side. Right was clean.
    I got the kit out. This kit is the one Pete sells that has the new bushings and rod with specific rotor and advancer adapter. The new bushings were a slip fit in the cam. When I slipped the rod through it pushed the bushings out.
    At first that bothered me a bit, after a bit of thought I realized it didn't really matter. With this set up they only hold the rod centered in the cam. It don't revolve inside like the stock advancer rod does, so no worries.
    The new rod is a aluminum rod all one diameter. This is a god thing, it weighs less than the steel versions. And again because it don't rotate in the bushings it won't wear.
    Now it's a bit after eight and that part is in. I'm still a bit tired so the rest will have to wait till tomorrow.
    I need to check the stock coil for proper ohms, might need to replace it.
    The rest of the install should be easy. Done a couple already so this one should be a snap.
    Will report more as it comes.
  19. XSLeo

    XSLeo XS650 Guru Top Contributor

    It's Sunday afternoon, I finished the Pamco install. Wired it up and it runs. No funny engine noises, a bit of smoke at start up but cleared right up. It didn't run very long. The wiring has the cover cut open in a lot of places. There seems to be a heavy draw on the battery. When I first started it I hooked up the meter to the battery and it was charging to about 14.1 or so. Not bad but As I was trying to set the timing it quit and was hard to start.
    I could get it to start and run for a short time and I got the timing close but the battery was getting down enough so it wouldn't run. I guess I will have to swap my 82 harness onto this bike to see if it helps. Recharging the battery didn't help much, it went dead pretty quick.
    I might swap the battery out of the 75 or 81 to see if that helps.
    Will keep you guys updated.

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