XS650 Special - Bobber build for my brother

6fittyspecial

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Hey guys, yet another build thread. I wanted to catalogue the whole build as I'm doing this for my bro who lives over the other side of Australia.

I have extremely limited space but have about 13 years of experience working on bikes, so I'm hoping one makes up for the other.

Some of this thread might not be super interesting to everyone as I want to share every last detail with my bro, but all your comments and suggestions, if you have any, are more than welcome.

Good to be apart of this community... already seen some awsum builds, ideas and tech tips.

Cheers
Lucas
 

6fittyspecial

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Ok lets get started.

Here's the bike we found to be the base. 1981 XS-650 Special.

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The compression and clutch feel great.

There's a strange intermittent squeal when you twist the power on sometimes but it just sounds like a vacuum leak. Otherwise should be a solid starting place.
 

6fittyspecial

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Now I live in a housing estate thingy.. so 1 x carport per house (to share between 3 cars) and I'm in the third story apartment... so no chance of gettin the ol' girl up the stairs..

My solution: Build a shed.

here's how that went...

Being an overzealous young engineer.. I decided a quick model up on solidworks was in order..

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I actually suprised myself at how close to the model the real thing turned out...

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I even painted it Heritage Green like the rest of the carport so I wouldnt annoy the neighbors too much..

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Its cosy.. I just hope I left enough room for the frame mods. Its quite secure as well.

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All welding will be undertaken at a mates workshop but the majority of the build is happening right here in the little green box. Makes me laugh just thinking about it, but considering it regularly gets over 30oC over here I'm glad I have an open plan workspace.
 

6fittyspecial

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Ok got some time to start the tear down last weekend....

Few pics of the dismantling process.. it was super hot and i was movin pretty slow from a big night.. but made progress.

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Also started making enquiries about buying the frame.
Brother wants to run with an Ardcore DIY hardtail. He's gunna be taking lead on the style of this build.
 

6fittyspecial

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Cheers H3llb3nt.. yeh its tight but got the whole carport when its opened up and its way cooler than havin a shed.. heat's runnin in the low 40's most of this week..
 

h3llb3nt1

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Nice choice on the Ardcore tail. Being in the states these parts can get a little pricy. Can't imagine what cost would be on a complete build having much of it shipped overseas. I was in Aussie land back the early 90's. Sydney to be exact. My battle group pulled into Sydney Harbor for the 50th Commemoration of the Battle of Coral Sea. Had a blast man. Aussies rule. Was certainly the most well received of all the countries I have visited. Big parade, fan fair and just a couple scooners of new. Just a couple :D
 

6fittyspecial

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Yeh I hear that.. Trying to get a quote out of them has been a struggle but I think my bro has managed to make contact.

It will be interesting but our dollar is quite strong at the moment so its a good time to do it.

Haha thats sounds about right... everything ends in "just a couple" over here ...
Sydney goes alright but if you come back Melbourne is where the party is at haha.
 

h3llb3nt1

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So I hear. There were a couple of places their we were supposed to go but, was called back to the Persian Gulf. Bummer. Hopefully someday Ill take the family back
 

6fittyspecial

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New progress.

Frame is fully stripped.

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Engine stand built and engine reco started. Had to remove the starter motor but we are planning on leaving the electric leg off anyway so no harm done.

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Hardtail ordered but sounds like there is upto a 13 week wait.... so focus is on getting the motor mickey mouse and all checked out.
 

6fittyspecial

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So I got to install a Vice (donated by a friend) in my workshop today :laugh: ... Works Great!!

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I then went to remove the valves and being a more of a "make it" rather than "buy it" kind of guy... built a solid, cheap, valve spring compressor.

13/16 (21mm) deep socket, ground out some notches and got a G-clamp with a block of nylon taped to it to create a little distance.

Total cost $10 bucks (already had the clamp). Could have made it even cheaper if I could be bothered driving to a proper hardware store for a cheaper socket.

I used a little magnet rod to catch the collets but didnt really need it.

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Rest of the engine is almost ready for soda blasting...

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6fittyspecial

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Split the case and emptied ready for soda blasting.

It came apart really easy... once i found all the bolts I needed to undo.

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Internals look great too...

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Time to order a tank and a few other bits and pieces.

Still waiting on the hardtail. No word on estimated delivery time yet. Suppose we'll just be patient and wait a few more weeks then give them a ring.
 

trentjanelle

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awesome stuff man, i'm in perth too. If you don't mind i might hit you up for some info on building the motor on these bad boys. thats the part i'm up to and it scaring me to the point where i put it off.
 

6fittyspecial

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Cheers Trent,

Sure what do you need to know? It's all pretty simple. Just keep it clean and spend a few bucks on a couple of those divded plastic bolt trays you can get at bunnings and a black texta to label stuff with. Well worth the money. Keeps everything together and neat and tidy so you dont end up with random bolts at the end.

Have you done an engine before? What part is scary haha?

The resources on this site are amazing. If you have any problems, 99% of the time someone else on here has had it and solved it.

Good luck with your build and let me know if you need any help.
 

scabber

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Welcome to the site. Looks like you are off to a good start. The pictures of your motor show rusty outer cylinder bottoms. It appears to me that at some point of time excessive moisture was present in the crankcase. I would take a look at the outer main bearing. The races have been known to rust if it sat for a time. Spray with carb cleaner and check for pitting. It might be the cause of the squeal. The bike has some miles on it and the outer main is a ball type bearing and takes considerable load from the clutch. Other things could cause the squeal. It looks like your bike has points so advance rod squeal. You have got it apart now is the best time to give it a good look. Transmission gears and dogs ect. You have come to right place everything you need to know is at your finger tips. If I were building a bike out of a box. I would go for the flat seat bobber, a little less ambitious as a hard tail but more practical my opinion. Will be watching your build have fun doing it. :cheers:
 

6fittyspecial

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Hey Scabber,

Yeh I left them wrapped in some rags and we had 5 days worth of rain and I bloody left them underneath the only leaking part of the box :doh: ... went away for 2 weeks and came back to find a pile of soaked rags and rusty cyclinders... but I am getting them soda blasted and honed anyway so not really fussed...

All the bearings and races look good no real signs of pitting or anything..

Thanks for the ideas im almost positive its not a bearing squeal.. but it could be the advance rod like you said. I'll be having a good look into it all for sure, everything is going back together new or cleaned up like new so I will check for any signs of wear that might be evidence of the cause.

Yeh I get what you mean.. a flat seat bobber would be easier considering... but my bro and I talked about it and decided to go hard... I have access to a couple of different work shops so Hard Tail should go together without too many headaches.. Just a matter of waiting for it to arrive to see if it proves me wrong hahaha

Thanks for the comments mate :cheers:
 
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