'79 Special Cafe Build Project Begins (20 years late?)

Brassneck

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Brassneck...you my friend, are doing some fantastic work!

I really like the quality and tastefulness of what you've done (especially as opposed to some of the other hack jobs...sheesh!).

At any rate, I see you're in Seattle, I'm in Olympia and am a pretty hardcore XS-650 lover myself.

Perhaps we could swap parts, contacts, lies, etc...some time?

Drop me a note sometime if you'd like.

Vincent

Thanks Vincent! I appreciate the positive feedback! I'm loving this project, and having a blast working through the various steps.

Olympia's not too far... would be happy to connect, swap parts, and better yet--I'd love to find other local XS'ers to learn/talk with... I could actually use some guidance especially when I get to the jetting/exhaust changes I plan to make down the road. (Not doing that any time soon thankfully!)

Perhaps this spring/summer when the weather gets better we could even get a ride or meetup set?
 

Brassneck

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Finally, I got my painted tank/seat & side covers back...and all I can say is WOW! It's exactly what I wanted, and came out great I think.

Might not be to everyone's taste, but I'm VERY happy with it.

Here are a few pics...What do you guys think?

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angus67

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I think most would be extremely happy with the results. You did a very excellent job.
Nothing seems half-assed.
I really like the contrast of the satin vs. the gloss.
Makes me want to do the same, if only my friend would sell me his '80. Doesn't even ride the damn thing.
Nice ghia, from what I can see. Better shots?
 

Brassneck

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Thanks Angus!

I'm glad you noticed the satin/gloss...I was hoping it would be visible in the shots.

Here's a few of the Ghia...it's a '69 I've been working on for a few years. Fun car, and great VW community! :)

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angus67

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I so badly want to do a sub/Baja. But the initial cost of a running bug is crazy! My brother in law just fired up a svx (flat six) Subaru motor in a 92 impreza. near genius.
Back to bikes. Love it. now for some miles! Come up to Shelton for a good ride in the trees.
 

lakeview

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Really nice work, well thought out. The first instance I saw your new painted tins I thought "Vincent". Back on earth, still looks good as a Yamaha.

Funny about that Ghia, when they were a current model, I was not impressed. Now seeing yours with the nice wheels, I am may have to change my mind.
 

Brassneck

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I so badly want to do a sub/Baja. But the initial cost of a running bug is crazy! My brother in law just fired up a svx (flat six) Subaru motor in a 92 impreza. near genius.
Back to bikes. Love it. now for some miles! Come up to Shelton for a good ride in the trees.

I am trying to decide if I should go with a 1776 or a 1914 for the Ghia...something fun but mild, or something with a bit more... umph? I know of a few people that have fitted a WRX engine in there... crazy power! I don't think I could go that extreme...but what a drive that would be! :)

Yes, back to bikes...thanks! I have ripped around the Shelton area on my FZ1...would be fun to get the XS out there....those roads are great from what I remember.
 

Brassneck

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Really nice work, well thought out. The first instance I saw your new painted tins I thought "Vincent". Back on earth, still looks good as a Yamaha.

Funny about that Ghia, when they were a current model, I was not impressed. Now seeing yours with the nice wheels, I am may have to change my mind.

I appreciate that...It's been a vision I've tried to follow from day 1... and I love the Vincent/Norton look...which this is kind of a reflection of.

Ghia's are one of those cars that can look very cool...or super dorky depending on the angle, color, ride-height, etc...but one thing I've found is that they tend to grow on you the more you look into them! :)
 

650Skull

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Haven't followed your thread for a while and i gotta say the paint job, (and the style of build), is superb. Love the black and gold. Just need to replace those Special mufflers with something longer and kicked up the back to top it off.

It looks really balanced.
 

Brassneck

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Haven't followed your thread for a while and i gotta say the paint job, (and the style of build), is superb. Love the black and gold. Just need to replace those Special mufflers with something longer and kicked up the back to top it off.

It looks really balanced.

Thanks again 650! So glad this site exists...as I would have had to do much more trial/error to get to this point. And I agree about the pipes...I'm looking to change them out. The stock ones are almost in perfect condition...so I'll not be cutting them up, but I haven't found a set that have made me jump just yet. Perhaps later this fall I'll start to look more aggressively.
 

Brassneck

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Got it outside, took advantage of the no rain day to see if I could get it running.

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With all the stuff I've done while waiting for the paint work, I needed to get it all back together. First, I needed to put on the vacuum petcocks I had refurbished to see if they wouldn't leak anymore, and let me just say...Ugh! Super frustrating...one works great...the other, not so much! I used some kits (Mikesxs) and it seemed to fix the right side petcock, but the other weeped like a mountain spring! Crap! So I tore it apart 4 times, knowing it was useless...the valve just wasn't sitting well. I check on here a few times to see if there was something I was missing...and one tip was to polish the seat...which I did...but no go. I pretty much gave up and was getting ready to order a new set of non-vacuum petcocks and be done with it...but then I thought, what if I just use the old valve? And low and behold, it worked. For how long? I don't know...but no leaking fuel meant I could get the tank back on!

I turned on the key, and two kicks later...that beautiful rumble! And then cough/pop/cough/pop...and it died. Ha ha...I had forgotten to put on the vacuum lines, and forgot to set the idle screw...but once adjusted, it came to life and stayed purring.

Then I noticed the tail light went out... but brake light still worked... so found a replacement bulb...and I was off!

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With the new rearsets, I needed to adjust those to fit my stance... easy!

One thing I noticed is that I was having a hard time shifting. I could get into first easy enough...but couldn't get back into neutral...I could skip to 2nd, 3rd and so on...and come back down to first, but would still skip neutral...Back when I took off the side cover to replace the sprockets, I'm pretty sure the clutch rod and adjuster wasn't touched, but I must have done something as it wasn't feeling as smooth as I had had it. During the ride I adjusted the cable at the lever...and that seemed to help, but the adjustment screw was WAY out. So tonight I adjusted the screw on the side cover...tightened and then back out 1/4 turn. Have yet to test it, but it feels like it's pulling (or pushing in?) a lot better...we'll see soon enough.

Anyways, short update. so far so good.
 

Vincenthdfan

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Very, very nice...reminds me of the Honda GB500 or an old Velocette.

Ready to sell it to someone local now that your done building it?? :D
 

Brassneck

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Ha, you're right, it does look like the GB500! Only better, cuz it's a Yamaha. ;)

Hell, for the right price anything's for sale!
 
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