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Mailman’s XS2 a full on restoration

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by Mailman, Mar 1, 2018.

  1. Mailman

    Mailman Hardly a Guru Top Contributor

    FRESH MEAT! :)

    MaxPete, gggGary, txxs and 5 others like this.
  2. Jim

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

    Holy crap those look good!!! :D
  3. kshansen

    kshansen XS650 Guru Top Contributor

    I'm starting to think back in 1972 there was not an XS650 that was as clean and shinny as this one will be when done, not even on the assembly line over in Japan!
    gggGary, TwoManyXS1Bs, robinc and 2 others like this.
  4. Mailman

    Mailman Hardly a Guru Top Contributor

    Thanks Jim. Dunlop K70’s the rear is an EXACT duplicate of the tread that was on the factory original tires, that we’re still on the bike when I bought it. The original front tire was ribbed, very popular in the 60’s and 70’s but evil handling! So I chose a matched set of the K70’s. They really have the period correct look that I wanted. On my other 650 , I opted for modern profile tires for good handling. My FIRST choice for the XS2 would’ve been Dunlop K81’s.
    The same tires I ran on my original ‘76 XS650C , but for whatever reason the skinniest front tire you can get in the K81 is a 4.10 x 19

    Thanks Ken. They always look nice when you first finish a bike, but it sure is hard to keep them that way once you start riding them.
    gggGary, TwoManyXS1Bs and Jim like this.
  5. robinc

    robinc Member of the 'yellow meter gang' Top Contributor

    So you bought new tires AND new rims Bob? Lol.

    Looking great man. I have to agree with Ken, this bike did not look as good as you'll have it when it came off the line.

    K70's :thumbsup:

    Sumthin' tells me this won't be a problem for you buddy!
    gggGary, TwoManyXS1Bs and Mailman like this.
  6. willis

    willis xsive compulsive disorder XS650.com Supporter Top Contributor

    So Bob, how close are you getting to start the reassembly? Teasing us with all these shiny bits has me getting anxious to see it back together. I can’t imagine how eager you are getting.
    gggGary, Jim and robinc like this.
  7. Mailman

    Mailman Hardly a Guru Top Contributor

    I still have a ways to go but I’m getting there. I still want to pull the motor from the frame and get both the motor and the frame all cleaned up and the frame painted. It’s easy doing big things that are instantly gratifying. The real work will be getting all the wiring sorted and the carbs tuned and the ignition all gone through and all the details that you can’t see.
    I also have a LOT of work to do on the motor,
    I am replacing the entire clutch assembly with a later model and I need to have a look at that starter gear and on and on.
    But back to your question, I’m really not sure when I’ll be re assembling it. I’ll know when it’s time, until then I’m just enjoying the process.
    gggGary, TwoManyXS1Bs, willis and 2 others like this.
  8. Mailman

    Mailman Hardly a Guru Top Contributor


    Coming to you live from deep in the Arizona desert. Stripping my bike down as far as I can go in preparation for pulling my motor. Maybe will do it this weekend. Note to self: it sure would’ve been easier to drain the oil BEFORE , when it was still on its wheels.
    In retrospect, I also wish I would have done some preliminary cleaning , while I could still roll this thing out in the driveway. Ah well....where’s the fun in that.

    Ok , enough chit chat, I got work to do! :geek:
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2018
    YamadudeXS650C, gggGary, Jim and 2 others like this.
  9. robinc

    robinc Member of the 'yellow meter gang' Top Contributor

  10. Mailman

    Mailman Hardly a Guru Top Contributor

    My seat is done! And it came out great. I posted a separate thread on installing the seat cover. You can see that here.


    This was a rather lengthy process from beginning to end. Gary was instrumental in connecting me with a replacement seat foam, I have covered that earlier. I ordered some generic upholstery tack strips from eBay that I used. There are some nicer ones ( and more expensive ) available through HVCycles. I had to buy a new pop rivet gun because mine died right at the start of this. Had to get new hardware to mount the trim strip and spray adhesive to secure the foam and yadda yadda yadda
    Anyhoo, it’s all done now and it came out great, so here it is.
    FDF032D3-4400-478D-AEA0-7E881467D9DC.jpeg A5C66C39-B965-40A1-9D61-81D3C614706E.jpeg 69759322-D4EE-490A-B645-3C61289DF271.jpeg DC3B84C3-4EDC-4EF2-A006-5282CA7987E3.jpeg

    So now, about that grab rail. Some of you know I’ve been searching high and low for one of these. A while back I contacted Gary to see if he had one in his barn of treasures. He came back with the answer of “Well I have a couple that I have plans for , but I could let you borrow one until you find one.” Haha! What a guy! Who does that?
    So while I was working on the seat one day , up pulls the mail truck. A present from Baraboo!

    So the one that’s on the seat now for the photographs is on loan from the Smithsonian and is going right back!
    My Canadian connection really came through for me. Eagle eyed Robin spotted possibly one of the last remaining grab bars for sale on XS Direct. Since XS Direct won’t sell directly to America, Pete is going to make the purchase then chuck it over the great Northern American wall and into the mail.
    Thank you Gary for your kind offer of letting my bike look the part by sporting one of your personal grab bars.
    Thank you Robin and Pete for your efforts on my behalf, you guys rock!
    The members of this forum and their kind hearted generosity once again leave me humbled.
    geedubya, MrBultaco, 59Tebo and 5 others like this.
  11. Mailman

    Mailman Hardly a Guru Top Contributor

    Oh I forgot to mention, I ordered some new seat pan bumper pads from eBay, forum member Cra-Z1 found some on eBay and pointed them out to me. Not a complete set, but I’m going to replace a couple I damaged when removing them and also add an extra where 2M recommended to help prevent stress cracks.
  12. robinc

    robinc Member of the 'yellow meter gang' Top Contributor

    Absotivley beeeeautifull Bob. Nice job!

    Man, that looks awesome.

    Gotta love the XS650 Smithsonian and it's loaner program. This place never ceases to amaze me. The helpfulness, kindness and generosity of its members is truly humbling. Thank you all!
  13. MaxPete

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

    Good stuff Bob - your new seat rail is scheduled to arrive in Windsor tomorrow and I will be popping it into the USPS ASAP after that.

    Last edited: Jun 7, 2018
  14. Mailman

    Mailman Hardly a Guru Top Contributor

    Thanks Pete! You’re the best!
  15. MaxPete

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

    Hey, hey.....and guess what just arrived at the Disaster Central Workshop?

    Millie is 4-paws up and tail waggin’ on shipping this p/n 68-6800 seat rail out to our very own Mailman in dry, hot Arizona!!
  16. Mailman

    Mailman Hardly a Guru Top Contributor

    That was fast....Woohoo!
  17. cra-z1

    cra-z1 XS650 Junkie Top Contributor

    The seat turned out very nice. You are doing a fantastic job
    Jim and Mailman like this.
  18. Mailman

    Mailman Hardly a Guru Top Contributor

    Thanks Robin,
    I really appreciate your help sourcing that hand rail. And you’re right, the Smitsonian loaner program is awsome! :laugh2:

    Thanks, you’ve been very helpful along the way!
  19. Mailman

    Mailman Hardly a Guru Top Contributor


    No no no, not that extraction team, The EET or Engine Extraction Team, a term coined by Robin. :laugh2:
    This morning Daniel Black came over to my house and after making a run for breakfast we tackled pulling my motor. It turned out to be extraordinarily easy. The hardest part was lifting that lump up onto the bench. She way la!
    That things heavy.
    3F86A531-82E0-4B5E-AECE-8F6A3B372E01.jpeg DBCCB5DA-9F74-4CDD-88C9-2B61D7200DAC.jpeg 16BFFC2B-4F1A-448A-B8A1-31D9BF37BA8D.jpeg 9BB6D0DE-1F62-4F4D-BE92-34ED3D9EBDF0.jpeg

    But now that it’s up on my bench I can’t help but think about all the things I should do to it. Oh man, Jim and a Robin are bad influences. They got me thinking I could actually do some work in here. Still thinking.......
    I’ll let you know when a plan solidifies.

    My wife came out in the garage and she sees the motor up on the bench and she says “Oh.....is that going to be there long?”
    Me: Hmmm. Maybe
    Her: Are you going to start working on the motor now? “
    Me: Hmmm. Maybe
    Me: I start talking about seals and gaskets that need to be replaced, and valve guide seals and.....
    Her: Eyes glaze over and starts thinking about shoes on sale.

    There’s nothing more dangerous than a man with a little bit of ability and big ideas. I’ll keep you posted.
    Later, Bob
  20. MaxPete

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

    Looks good Bob - nice to see you again and Daniel too!

    Check your mail on Monday.....

    robinc, Jim and Mailman like this.

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