1973 Honda XL250 with 186 original miles - Need Advice

I purchased a 1973 Honda XL250 with 186 original miles from the original owner. Bike is all original and was stored indoors all its life. Even has original tires which dont even have a crack in them. Owner had the carbs cleaned and put in a new battery. It is in amazing condition. Maybe the lowest milage 1973 xl250 in the world. Has original owners manuel and tools under the seat. Still has the 1973 Licence Plate on it. It has the mirror as well its just not on the bike.


What sort of things should I be aware of and be on the lookout for when running a 40 year old bike. It runs fine starts on first kick. I think I am going to clean the gas tank out to make sure no rust in it.


These pictures are how I got it have not done a thing to it yet. I would like to ride it but would like some tips on what could need attention before I do.









Edited by 1973xl250

Nice !!

Can you post some pics ?

Edited by backyard hack

Awesome condition , that's the best I have seen

Fresh oil , check the air cleaner , lube the cables .

Then send it to me

Whats cool about this is my first bike was a 1975 XL100 which was purchased from the same dealer that this bike was purchased from, so its bringin back some memories for me.

Unbelieveable. Lucky you are my friend. To be honest, I would do just about everything short of getting into the motor. That thing should be solid on the inside but if it were mine, Id be pulling that thing to pieces as far as it would go (except the motor) and cleaning every single piece with a toothbrush and soap. Dry thoroughly and re-assemble with greased bolts and greased axels and you'd have the cleanest original 73' XL250 in the world. congratulations to you sir! my hat is off!  :thumbsup:

That is a sweet bike! Congrats man! It should bring you miles of smiles.

That bike is amazing.

Back in 1973 I was a junior in high school, and the local Honda dealer let my friend and I each take a new XL250 out back behind the honda shop and ride some laps around a little oval track. I was in heaven riding that bike, but couldn't afford it. I was riding a 1968 Honda CL90 daily at that time. For many years after that testride, the XL250 was my dream bike...

I always felt kinda bad about taking that shiny new bike for a testride, knowing I couldn't afford it, getting it dirty, saying "thanks for the testride", and getting back on my honda 90 and riding away. My buddy did end up buying a new XL350 from that dealer after he graduated from high school.

If I were to score such a pristine XL250 like the one you have, I think I'd have trouble with riding it, as it probably belongs in a vintage bike collection somewhere...


Picked the bike up tonight, wow this bike is amazing, just needs a cleaning , no rust or anything, the tires are original with the nibs on them still. Starts on one kick with no choke. The owners manual is still in its plastic and it came with 3 keys. Tools have neven been out of the bag.


Cant wait to start cleaning this thing.

Immaculate it is..You own one of the greatest wheelstand machines ever produced..Miles and miles they will go for on one wheel..and no slouch in there day in MX or Enduro either..Total winners they were..Kinda hard to believe looking at it ..all the truth I can assure you of that..

Edited by Horri

Nice find!  Make a video or something I would love to know more about it.  I have the first magazine test and it came with a poster (still attached)  www.thejunkmanadv.com



remember it is still in the break in period!  so ride it but be easy on it. Follow what it says in the manual.  They love fresh oil.  Change it at 500 miles. 

That thing is dynamite. Congrats  :thumbsup:

If it sat untouched for 40 years you may be finding serious problems down the road. Engine seals and gaskets are probably shot. Dried and cracked. You may find oil leaks developing soon. Also, and much worse, if the engine was not at the very least kicked over once or twice a year you may have a problem with the piston rings and cylinder. My brother-in-law bought a 45 year old 250cc Harley Sprint engine that was still in the crate from Harley Davidson. The engine had not been touched by human hands for 45 years. Some kind of chemical reaction / corrosion happened where the piston rings touched the cylinder wall. It was so bad the cylinder had to be bored two times over sized just to clean it up.


Not trying to be a buzz kill, just relaying what can happen. Otherwise, nice find! Consider cleaning it up and selling it to a museum. Seriously.

Edited by Mike38

Nice poster!

The bike was started every year the owner said just not ridden.


I washed it today and it cleaned up nice, just have to detail it now.













Lets see it from the right side

Lets see it from the right side

Here is the right side. The tank is fine, I think the sun or something washed it out in the picture.



simply beauitful! you are a lucky man.  I have a 72 XL250  that has a motor in it that has 200 miles on it. It was - as the story was told to me, In a bike in - in a crate along with many other new ones and the 18 wheeler overturned.  Many bikes damaged etc. Honda donated the motors to a local community college (small engine repair). The engine had been disassembled and reassembled many times, then after so much use stowed away in a room. Then the school decied to ebay these motors. I bought it for 100.00 bucks. when it arrived, I noted the side cover screws were untouched, cases never split. Top end had been apart alot. But no bent valves - no cracked or broken rings, clean bore. Like new! I used a new base gasket and head gasket and reassembled and it started right up and runs - well like new! I have put 200 miles on it since, 

You truly have a one of a kind motorcycle, while I've never owned one there have been several XL's in my family. You have a responsibility to the machine to keep it right, ride and enjoy it as was intended, and continue to post up on TT to keep us drooling on your beautiful bike. I have a car similar to your bike, I take the responsibility pretty seriously to keep the machine pristine, yet drive it as was intended by the manufacture. Good luck with this, please keep us up to speed on your bike!

Work on getting essential spare parts-the bike is a keeper !

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