View Full Version : First build thread - '78 XS 650

09-25-2009, 9:54 PM
Alright, gonna kick this off straight from the craigslist pic. Going to pick up this jam tomorrow afternoon, I'll update with pics from my garage when I get it home.


I'm gonna go for a chopped hardtail, should be a fun way to deal with the rain in PDX this winter. Got a Clymer manual on the way. Get ready to help out a homie e'ryone...ha.

Updates soon...

09-26-2009, 8:24 PM
cant wait to see this one go under the saw..

09-27-2009, 3:23 AM
Got home today, rode pretty solid. Took this crap off tonight...


09-27-2009, 11:46 AM
Oh Yeah, It's Go time!
Got a style/direction picked out?

09-28-2009, 2:52 PM
Yup, only decision I still need to make is hardtail or no. But I got a little more teardown time so I'll keep thinking/researching more pics coming tonight.

09-28-2009, 2:57 PM
hell yea, that thing looks like its in good condition. where in portland are you?

09-28-2009, 3:23 PM
Thanks man. I'm in NE.

09-29-2009, 11:42 AM

Got some more done the last couple days, shocks, bars, air cleaners and that whole battery box mess. I'm going to invest in a jack then the wheels will be off too. The pipes are being shitty, the one that connects that goes right under the middle is rusted as shit, any tips to get those things off when they're being rusty bitchasses?

09-30-2009, 11:12 AM
More off, should be ready to start cutting soon and going to lower the front shocks as well.


09-30-2009, 5:46 PM
cant wait to see this one go under the saw..

Word up!!!!

Let see that Fucker get ripped.

Bike looks like a good find, cant wait to see more pictures.

10-01-2009, 10:45 AM
Gettin there! Probably hackin' this weekend.


10-02-2009, 6:23 PM
First test cut is done, just to get the feel. Now I need to get the engine out. Any tips? I got all the bolts loosened but the big one on the very bottom is being a bitchface. Thx.


10-02-2009, 8:00 PM
Tapped it out, don't jack the threads.
You got this.

10-03-2009, 2:03 AM
You could always try laying the bike on it side, take off every bolt and bracket from the engine, leaving the bottom bolt till last and just lift the frame up and off the engine. Just make sure you get plenty of sheets down to protect the engine and to soak up any spills.

10-03-2009, 2:08 PM
Got it. Jacked the threads though. Win some, lose some. Heh.

10-03-2009, 11:36 PM
...and it's go time.


10-04-2009, 12:08 AM
cant wait to see this thing hacked on...

10-04-2009, 4:31 PM


10-11-2009, 9:26 PM
Very nice lookin good! I actually picked up a 78 today as well. Im just about 4 hours south of ya haha! Gonna start the teardown tomorrow.

11-03-2009, 12:51 PM
What's Happening with this Project?

11-05-2009, 9:10 AM
Awesome thread. Keep with the updates

03-14-2010, 9:26 PM
Whattup y'all? Been a while but I got tax money back finally so I'm rolling along. Here's a pic from my welder, should have my frame back in the next few days. Got spoked wheels, tank is on order, Humphries is making me some bars and has some a headlight and a seat to use for a bit. Should be more updates sooner than later...

<a href="http://s9.photobucket.com/albums/a74/sbaravetto/?action=view&current=Picture218.jpg" target="_blank"><img src="http://i9.photobucket.com/albums/a74/sbaravetto/Picture218.jpg" border="0" alt="Photobucket"></a>

03-14-2010, 11:29 PM
Hey man... after looking at this photo... I think I met you at doomtown the other day... ?
Either way shit is looking good.

03-15-2010, 10:32 AM
lookin good!! keep it comin

03-15-2010, 12:19 PM
Thanks dudes. Bringing wheels and motor over to the shop tonight so we can mock it up before the final welds...psyched.

03-15-2010, 5:52 PM
Whatcha got hiding in the background buddy? cb750 HUH?????

03-16-2010, 11:43 AM
I think so, I believe it's James' shopmate's bike....pretty bitchin', and apparently he got it for free and has been cleaning it up.

03-16-2010, 5:44 PM
looking good! Can't wait to see more.

03-16-2010, 7:31 PM
The build looks good, can't wait to see it as a roller.

03-18-2010, 11:49 AM
So my friend Jon made some bars for me, they are 1". Anything I should know on controls/cables for going from 7/8" to 1"?


03-18-2010, 11:52 AM
Oh yeah, risers on the way from Biltwell, rear fender ordered from No School and I got a battery box and oilbag coming as well.

Looking at a few places for tires on the stock 18 and 19, I'm trying for that semi knobby look so if anyone has recommendations holler.

03-22-2010, 12:01 AM
Here's the weekend update with some pics. My tank came in so I brought it by with the seat Jon gave me so we could figure out placement. Psyched.

Electronics and battery box should be here in the next couple days, as well as some Biltwell risers. Rear fender in another week and a half or so. Here's a question though:

Switching to 1" bars, do I need to get a different clutch cable or just the lever? Thoughts?

<a href="http://s9.photobucket.com/albums/a74/sbaravetto/?action=view&current=Picture293.jpg" target="_blank"><img src="http://i9.photobucket.com/albums/a74/sbaravetto/Picture293.jpg" border="0" alt="Photobucket"></a>

<a href="http://s9.photobucket.com/albums/a74/sbaravetto/?action=view&current=Picture291.jpg" target="_blank"><img src="http://i9.photobucket.com/albums/a74/sbaravetto/Picture291.jpg" border="0" alt="Photobucket"></a>

<a href="http://s9.photobucket.com/albums/a74/sbaravetto/?action=view&current=Picture292.jpg" target="_blank"><img src="http://i9.photobucket.com/albums/a74/sbaravetto/Picture292.jpg" border="0" alt="Photobucket"></a>

03-22-2010, 5:07 AM
I reckon this is the first continuous loop frame I've seen on an XS (I'm sure there's others), very nicely done.

How much extra rake is on that front end?

03-22-2010, 11:39 AM
Thanks, I'm super happy with his work so far.

No added rake to the front, just lowering the forks an inch or so.

03-22-2010, 4:37 PM
diggin the build

03-22-2010, 8:38 PM
ok, cool. Must just be the angle of one of those photos made it looked raked out a bit.

03-25-2010, 1:48 AM
<a href="http://s9.photobucket.com/albums/a74/sbaravetto/?action=view&current=1.jpg" target="_blank"><img src="http://i9.photobucket.com/albums/a74/sbaravetto/1.jpg" border="0" alt="Photobucket"></a>

Dropped off the electronics and battery box today, and Crowe had the seat tacked in to check placement. Shit is definitely feeling rad, going back Friday to try and figure out the foot peg situation.

03-25-2010, 5:33 PM
seriously the more I look at your hardtail the more I like it!

Looking great overall.

03-25-2010, 7:24 PM
What size tires do you have on the bike?

03-25-2010, 8:57 PM
Thanks philbey!

Wheels are stock, 19 in front, 18 in back.

03-25-2010, 9:13 PM
Just picked up a 79' tonight, can't wait to get started. Your bike looks great by the way.

04-23-2010, 9:48 AM
Went by Crowe's shop yesterday to see where we are at. Footpegs are on, Sportster passenger pegs that worked perfect, by the way. Back break set up is done, tank is mounted, back tire is on so we took a look at the rear fender placement and got it marked. He should be working on that in a couple days, so hopefully it'll be coming home soon to start on wiring and fuel lines and all that good shit.

Anyone got tips on a one petcock tank into dual carbs?

<a href="http://s9.photobucket.com/albums/a74/sbaravetto/?action=view&current=tumblr_l1b3r36YXY1qz4g8wo1_500.jpg" target="_blank"><img src="http://i9.photobucket.com/albums/a74/sbaravetto/tumblr_l1b3r36YXY1qz4g8wo1_500.jpg" border="0" alt="Photobucket"></a>

04-23-2010, 9:59 AM
Anyone got tips on a one petcock tank into dual carbs?

pingle inline petcock and or just a "Y" or "T" fitting.


04-24-2010, 7:38 PM
the later xs650's were a single petcock with a "T" in the line between the carbs

05-18-2010, 3:39 PM
Cranking along, trying to get this shit done by the 28th. Crowe has been crushing it, here's some pics of the fender/sissy bar set up.

Last night switched out the sprockets, repacked steerer bearings and started shaving the fork legs...shit is comin' along...

<a href="http://s9.photobucket.com/albums/a74/sbaravetto/?action=view&current=IMG_0840.jpg" target="_blank"><img src="http://i9.photobucket.com/albums/a74/sbaravetto/IMG_0840.jpg" border="0" alt="Photobucket"></a>

<a href="http://s9.photobucket.com/albums/a74/sbaravetto/?action=view&current=IMG_0839.jpg" target="_blank"><img src="http://i9.photobucket.com/albums/a74/sbaravetto/IMG_0839.jpg" border="0" alt="Photobucket"></a>

05-18-2010, 4:29 PM
The bike looks great so far.

05-26-2010, 3:40 PM
Gettin' closer...got a bunch of shit to do tonight, amped on the pipes!

<a href="http://s9.photobucket.com/albums/a74/sbaravetto/?action=view&current=31314_403193263577_656123577_427244.jpg" target="_blank"><img src="http://i9.photobucket.com/albums/a74/sbaravetto/31314_403193263577_656123577_427244.jpg" border="0" alt="Photobucket"></a>

05-26-2010, 8:57 PM
The pipes look great!

05-27-2010, 1:48 AM
bike looks great! what are you gonna do with the "keep on trucking" license plate frame you pulled off of it?

06-13-2010, 1:09 PM
Davey, I still have that plate frame, it's just kickin' it at the moment.

So here's where it's at now, running, motor is a fuckin' champion but there are still some tweaks to do here and there. So fucking amped on how this thing came out...

<a href="http://s9.photobucket.com/albums/a74/sbaravetto/?action=view&current=tumblr_l3qbt2wNgL1qz4g8wo1_500.jpg" target="_blank"><img src="http://i9.photobucket.com/albums/a74/sbaravetto/tumblr_l3qbt2wNgL1qz4g8wo1_500.jpg" border="0" alt="Photobucket"></a>

<a href="http://s9.photobucket.com/albums/a74/sbaravetto/?action=view&current=30264_404973233577_656123577_432003.jpg" target="_blank"><img src="http://i9.photobucket.com/albums/a74/sbaravetto/30264_404973233577_656123577_432003.jpg" border="0" alt="Photobucket"></a>

Anyone out there got a vintage tail light or a good clean 7/8" throttle assembly gimme a shout.

06-13-2010, 8:47 PM
those pipes are pretty legit man good work

06-14-2010, 9:32 PM
Those pipes are fantastic, looks tops hugging the engine case like that. You'll be pretty close with your right butt cheek though, that gonna get a little warm?

06-15-2010, 4:09 PM
Thanks y'all. Nope, it's not too bad back there at the moment, I don't know if I would rest a backpack on it or anything but it's not like it burns the shit outta me or anything.

06-21-2010, 12:47 AM
Shit shoulda checked this earlier! was at a swap yesterday and coulda hooked you up with both! The bike is slayin it though! (I'd throw those fork boots back on to toughen the front end up.) I'd love to get that plate frame from ya, let me know.

06-21-2010, 8:03 AM
Nice bike man.

06-21-2010, 1:35 PM

Wheels are stock, 19 in front, 18 in back.[/QUOTE]

What kind of tires are those? I like the tread pattern on them.

06-22-2010, 2:35 PM
Davey - it's all you, one of the holes is busted but whatevs. Message me with an address and I'll send it out.

Thanks Moose.

Rabbit, the rear is a Dunlop K70 and the front is a Duro HF-317 I think...I'll double check though.

06-22-2010, 2:39 PM
Oh yeah, I put drag bars on...diggin' em...

<a href="http://s9.photobucket.com/albums/a74/sbaravetto/?action=view&current=tumblr_l4fnaiVwmI1qz4g8wo1_500.jpg" target="_blank"><img src="http://i9.photobucket.com/albums/a74/sbaravetto/tumblr_l4fnaiVwmI1qz4g8wo1_500.jpg" border="0" alt="Photobucket"></a>