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  #16  
Old 11 Oct 2008
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Xrl

"That frame doesn´t look good on that couch!(deserves a dirt mountain road)"

Ha ha, totally agree with you there, it will come for sure.
Got a few other projects to clear out of the way before I start the re-build (as well as work) but should keep me busy on those winter nights.
The bracket on the front is for a aluminium bash plate/tool box setup, it's just to locate the plate a bit further out from the frame to give a little more space in the boxes. Tyre levers will slot in the recess above it.
Will keep you informed on the build if you like?
Dave.
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Difference between XR650R/L-new-008.jpg  

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  #17  
Old 14 Oct 2008
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Nice bike couch, Dave. Fyi we had our frames braced in a similar way at the bottom of that triangle (see link below) but watch out all the stress is not then put at the point just above that plate on the back tube. That is where one of the bikes (or 2?) cracked (heavy loads, long range).

I would consider welding some sort of sleeve over that back bit of subframe but the more I think about it the more strengthening slender subframes for overland load-carrying is an inexact science prone to errors. There will always be a weak point and too heavy a rack can make things worse.
The only answer is a chunky OE subframe if you're into that sort of riding.

I rode an XRL for the first time in years the other day (its for sale btw; all the fruit) and next day finally got to run in my new Tenere for a few hundred miles (MHO on my website soon - many good points JMo).
For what we used them for in 2003 the XRL was a great bike for the money and did not miss a beat and parts/know how are easy to come by and cheap. The XRR was never in the running for that job. I briefly rode a well set up XRR in the desert last Jan and sure it had a lot of poke for point and squirt rallying but for real-world travelling an XRL or new XTZ is more like that cushy couch above

Ch

Adventure Motorcycling ~ Desert Riders XR650L preparation
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  #18  
Old 16 Oct 2008
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XRL Rack.

Cheers Chris.
I did think this and there is a boss benath the "y" section on the main cradle which will connect a strut to the pannier frame to spread the load on the front pannier rack mount (what was the rear footpeg mount).
The seat rails are beefed up where they meet up with the main cardle, but as you say, you can only try to think of everything.
I have seen a few frames beefed up at a known weak point only to see a crack at new weak point in another place!
I will pray to the god of metal fatigue!
Cheers.
Dave.
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  #19  
Old 17 Oct 2008
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Just bought one... Any pics of yours??

Quote:
Originally Posted by JMo (& piglet) View Post
Hi Lee - yes, you're right in as much as the oil change intervals on the L model are a lot longer. The handbook for the 650R says to change oil every 600 miles! but as I said above, that is primarily in racing conditions. Essentially the XRR has a much smaller oil capacity - only 1.8 litres, so the oil gets worked very hard.

On average I change the oil and filter every 1000 miles in general trail riding conditions, although on my trip to Europe & Morocco this year, I pushed that to around 1800 miles - although the oil was black and thin by then. Ideally you should stick to around 1500 mile (max) changes, and always change the filter too - they are only a few pounds. Otherwise the XRR is pretty low maintenance, valves don't go out of check very often unless you are thrashing it - 6000 mile checks would be fine, longer if you're gentle.

The XR650L is certainly a great travel bike - Chris Scott used one extensively and the Americans particularly love them - cheap, rugged, low maintenance, electric start (don't leave home without one!), but that is the main problem- the 650L is essentially a USA and rest-of-world model, and was never imported into the UK. You might be able to find a grey import on the open market, but they are very rare in the UK.

Personally, having bought an R and prepped it up as a full-on rallye bike (and adventure tourer), there is a lot to recommend it - however, there are far better bikes for distance work, you've got to want to take the tricky route to make the hardcore 650R really worth the effort.

I have just bought a new Yamaha 660 Tenere after years of being dyed in the wool Honda... and the new Ten' is a fantastic machine - everything the XR isn't on the road, and almost as good off-road for the sort of trail riding you might undertake on a solo overland trip... seriously, get finance if you have to, but get one - it's awesome!

xxx
Hi JMo,
Any pics of your prepped bike as i have just bought one and want to copy you
Only joking of course, but would like some ideas.
Cheers, Lee
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  #20  
Old 31 Oct 2008
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my xr 650 r has 7 years in mexico runs great on 85 exept when you are grabbing a huge handfull of throttle (ping) better at altitude but you can still go plenty fast 15 and 43 sprockets 15 is small and results in high chainwear at high speeds and cannot be larger, the fact that there is no cush drive on this bike also does'nt aleaviate high chainwear but an outfit in utah make a cush drive wheel for this bike its so clean burning it never dirties its oil and i have no problems at all pushing changes up to 5000 km and on 17 litres fuel if driving for economy 80-90kph will get you 500 km btw with 15 x43 with no cush at 100kph you realy need to be in fourth !its a great bike actually unbelievable, the only reserves I have about it is the subframe, in my mind I would say that its not strong enough for a big load. broken bits ,,not yet ,and it has been pushed all that its ever needed is tires and gas and the best part ! it has real tappets for valve adjustment and only takes 15min to check .Mods ,3wt oil in forks and shock with several shims removed to make it a cushy ride 240 watt lighting kit and 5x7 bosch h4 headlight in handmade carbonfibre chainguard to stop the wheel from flinging dirt onto the chain ,
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  #21  
Old 31 Oct 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by leevtr View Post
Hi JMo,
Any pics of your prepped bike as i have just bought one and want to copy you
Only joking of course, but would like some ideas.
Cheers, Lee
Not sure you can post photo links in the HUBB, but I'll have a go... otherwise check out TBM magazine from next month onwards... x

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  #22  
Old 31 Oct 2008
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Aha, it does work - so here are a few more...













xxx
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  #23  
Old 1 Nov 2008
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[QUOTE=JMo (& piglet);213300]Aha, it does work - so here are a few more...

Wowwww
That is a nice horse!!!!!
What fairing is that? Looks so gooooooood.
Where did you purchased it and how much cost it?

They should do a new set of pigs,one XR 650 RR
and the same as yours as XR 650 RL with e starter and DOT for street!
Ahhhhh my heart is pumping faster
More instruments details?
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  #24  
Old 1 Nov 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BCK_973 View Post
Wowwww
That is a nice horse!!!!!
What fairing is that? Looks so gooooooood.
Where did you purchased it and how much cost it?

They should do a new set of pigs,one XR 650 RR
and the same as yours as XR 650 RL with e starter and DOT for street!
Ahhhhh my heart is pumping faster
More instruments details?
The fairing kit is from a company called African Queens in Germany. It is designed specifically to fit with the Acerbis tank, and comes with the lights and brackets to support the rally navigation gear. However, it is pretty expensive at €1083 (euros)...

More info here: Zub-Generell and if you look at their catalogue pages, they do all sorts of kit (including low front fenders, although mine was from Acerbis).

The Nav gear is the Touratech R50 IMO and powered roadbook holder, and for rallyes I use a Garmin GPSII+ (simple), although I usually use a Garmin 2610 for travel.

My bike also has the Boechat electric starter kit fitted (available from XRStuff.co.uk) - again, expensive, but it works just like a factory install.

It's interesting you mention a factory e-start - the new Honda TRX700XX quad has a big-bore version of the XR650R engine - however, having looked more closely at one here in the US, the left hand casings are very different, and also the head - there is only one exhaust port on the 700 engine, rather than the pair on the 650R - so it wouldn't be possible just to put that engine into the bike as it is at the moment, which is a huge shame...

xxx
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  #25  
Old 1 Nov 2008
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Awesome!!

Cheers for posting the pics, your bike looks the mutts nuts!!
I must admit i probably wouldnt go as far as you have, but i dont blame anyone who does. The only question i have left is have you strenghened the rear end for luggage and in what way.
Thanks again,
Lee
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  #26  
Old 1 Nov 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by leevtr View Post
Cheers for posting the pics, your bike looks the mutts nuts!!
I must admit i probably wouldnt go as far as you have, but i dont blame anyone who does. The only question i have left is have you strenghened the rear end for luggage and in what way.
Thanks again,
Lee
Glad you like it Lee (do get TBM next month too though x)...

The subframe on the US spec bikes is slightly different in that it ends just behind the rear of the side panels, and the rear fender is unsupported (like an MX bike). The Europe models have an additional subframe (black steel) under the rear mudguard to help support the huge rear light/numberplate bracket assembly - although in itself offers no more support to the rear of the bike for luggage etc.

The XRs Only rack I have bolts to the ends of US style subframe and the seat bolts. The original M6 bolts in the subframe ends snapped, so I tapped them out to M8 (which have also since snapped... sounds like that castle built on the swamp in Monty Python's Holy Grail doesn't it?!) but that was mainly due to the face the bolts pass through the plastic, which means the bolts don't nip up really tight. I've since cut the plastic away and used washers to space out between the rack brackets and the subframe, and it's as strong as anything now.

However, although the top box set-up worked fine in the USA, after another 10,000 miles of off-road use, I've had to concede that the bike isn't really designed to have that sort of weight on that rack. It's fine for an Ortlieb style soft bag or tail-pack though.

There is a company in the US that make a subframe extension to help support luggage, and African Queens do a substantial pannier frame for the 650R that bolts back to the main frame, which overcomes the main problem - while I've had no problems with the standard aluminium seat subframe, the (potential) weak point is the fact it only bolts to the main frame using 3 M8 bolts - it was never designed to carry a lot of luggage, and especially water/fuel type weight.

Bracing back to the main frame tubes certainly helps, but looks a bit clunky and ugly. Personally I'd fit the XR's Only rack and just pack light... or else buy a Tenere for traveling like I did...

xxx
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  #27  
Old 26 Jan 2009
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XR 650R Lots of Torque!

Having read all the posts, found it very interesting! I have customized a XR650R whic i bought in 2003. It is water cooled and having uncorked it, i find it to be much more powerful than the xr 650L. i have riden both but prefer the race bred torque of the R. Its a kick start so getting down the sequence of starting and set up is crucial. I have two set of wheels which i can change in amatter of minutes. One set up has full knobbies with bigger rear sprocket for off road and the other set up with Pirelli Scorpion dual sport tires and a smaller sprocket for higher highway speeds. I have a 4.3 gallon Clark tank, stage 1, cam, re-jetted the carb, high flow unifilter, free flow exhaust, renthal bars, passenger pegs, rear rack, 200 watt stator, Jumbo coil, XR 650L headlight and cowling. I installed a speedometer from a european Honda dominator as its also got the 21 inch front wheel. Seat height increased slighlty when i added extra padding. The stock seat is not suitable for anything but racing. Not so smooth on the highway but with only 5 gears it performs very well. Its one of those bikes that puts a smile on your face when you start pulling hard in the dirt or on pavement. Don,t get me wrong its not the ultimate dirt bike, way too much power for that. It weighs just over 330 lbs. with fuel. Its perfect for me! I,m not looking for speed just the torque. Having grown up riding big singles when i started out i still like the feel of a single over multi cylinder bikes. Last year i took a large jump with it!!!! we both survived. Just my opinion but i had to make it what i was looking for! Not much out there! thats light & powerful. John
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  #28  
Old 26 Jan 2009
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Some XR650R race history ....

Wow! "A large jump!"




Cheers, good luck,

Last edited by mollydog; 24 Mar 2009 at 20:19.
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