Combining XL100 and XR 100 to create a new enduro bike for me hehehehe - NEED HELP!

Hi guys .

Bear with me as I explain my story, so you'll understand what I am trying to achieve. I am determined to make it work. Whatever it takes . I am not sure anyone has done this before... So it is kind of an ambitious project and your help is that much more needed. Read on...

Last night I bought a 1985 HONDA XL100S (and 1985 was the last year they made them ), street legal, current CA registration: The bike I have been looking for for LONG TIME (and my nationwide search yielded ZERO results as in" not-a-one for over 8 months now). I got lucky. A kid only one hour away from me was selling it!!!!!!! I heard about it (word of mouth) at 11 AM and by 6PM that same day I was hauling it back in my truck . $500 purchase and lot of work/restoration/customizing left to do.

THE CRAZY SUSPENSION IDEA POPS UP IN MY HEAD (oh noooo now we're in trouble!)

Here's the deal: I am a 115 petite enduro gal and initially rode a XL80S 1985 HONDA, but it is a bit too small. Since no one now a day makes a street legal dirt bike MY SIZE (and I mean 100 cc - something I can kick start and handle on a rough trail - none of that yamaha 200 B.S that is way too heavy and big for me - the bike, not the B.S ) I had to look into the past and figured the HONDA XL100S was it.

The size, power, handling, kickstarting of the XL100 is perfect for me and my needs. OK, now I have one, with plates, street legal and registered in CA and so I have a suitable foundation to work with. hehehehe


I however must admit that if I had my wish I would own an early 90's XR100 that would be street legal in CA (yeah, I know, I know, NO SUCH THING EXISTS) because it has the suspension I want (monoshock) and I like the gas tank/saddle lines. The look of the XL100S is not one I like. I therefore have the intention to alter the bike (now it starts becoming interesting ). Money is not a big issue as I can save and do it gradually, my main concern is WHAT IS DOABLE AND WHAT IS NOT. Since I cannot buy the bike I really want, my intention is to CREATE the bike I want. I am a firm believer that NOTHING is impossible (and where there's a -strong- will, there's a way)


Can my XL100S be altered to support monoshock suspensions? The XR100 of same year did have that suspension... Could I use that to alter my bike? Would it bolt on, or would I need to redo the frame? Could a XR100 rear frame area be "fused" (safely) to a XL100 front frame area so to keep my vin nb (a must so I can still be registered dual sport with DMV) but to get the back area that supports monoshock suspension?


And if the above crazy idea is possible, how will it affect all the gutts of my bike? Monoshock needs room in there for that suspension shock, would I then be forced to alter all the organization/placement of the inner parts? If so, would I have to use parts from an XR100 of same year to further alter my XL100?


Could a tank and saddle from an XR100 1991 through 1996 be mounted on the XL100 frame? remember I am not asking if it will be easy or cheap. I am asking if it can be done (WHATEVER IT TAKES TO MAKE IT HAPPEN). If so, what will it entail?

Question 4- I COULD USE A SPECIALIST'S HELP (you think?? LOL )

Can any of you refer me to someone who can customize dirt bikes in my area (I live in the greater Los Angeles, CA area)

You guys, I really need guidance. This is an ambitious project and not one that (I believe) has been tackled before. I intend to keep track of the cusmotizing and restoration project and make a nice website about it for posterity .

Your support through this process is VERY appreciated.



Hi. It would be a massive project to try to adapt the XL frame to single shock. It would be easier to stick the engine in a later , better suspended frame. Or uprate the shocks, swingarm, forks of the XLwith XR or even better CR 80 up to 1980 (if it fits). Maybe you could cut the steering stem off and weld it onto a XR 100 or CRF 100 !

The plastic and seat might swap over but you'll have to try it to see. Get friendly with someone that owns one and try it

I like the Idea of welding the XL steering stem onto the xr100 frame... looking at the XL100, I don't see how you could get a monoshock on there without doing some serious work. If I were you, I would find some nice aftermarket shocks to put on there. As for the front, take it off of a early 80's cr80... Is the XL100 too small for you at all?

i would say go to a fabrication shop with a CR80 rolling chassis, and your XL enigne and have them do a converison for you, unless you think you can do it. That would be the ideal way to keep the engine you want, but get a lighter, better suspended chassis. not sure if it would be street legal, but is that completely necessary, or just preferred? bear in mind, comprimises such as losing the street legal-ness (??) must be made to get excellent suspension/chassis

Why not move the xl engine into the xr frame ? I bet 100 doolahs that noone at the dmv/mva will know the difference. Just take the vin sticker and swap it.

I would go for a fresh XR 100, and get a professional to weld the XL steering head tube to it. Wonder if you could weld the XR steering head tube to a CR85 frame? Hmmmmmm......

Lotsa possibilities, make sure a get a pro welder, weld failure at the steering head could get extremely ugly extremely fast!


I have actually owned the bike you were dreaming about..... but I sold it. I've also done all kinds of plastic swaps, some good.... some bad, (be careful I've ruined perfectly good frames on some stupid ideas). You should either have the steering stem welded onto a newer generation frame 2002-2005 and go from there,or look into seeing if someone like Dave Miller (DMC) or Cartwright conversions could alter it into a CR85 conversion frame using CR80/85 that would be SWEET!!!!

Good Luck, Robbrt

OK. I am confused as to why you guys are suggesting a CR80? not sure what that is but I do have an XL80 in mint condition and it is too small for me, hence my moving to a 100. 100 is what I want. Is the CR80 the same size as an XL100?

Dan Wask you suggest using the XR100 chassis. Swapping vin number... They will probably never tell but if they do it has some serious repercutions, especially on your insurance rates cause you get tagged by DMV for many years. Not worth it to me, I have too many vehicles, cars, trucks, trailers, motorhome, and 2 bikes with state farm (not exactely cheap).

LATETS REPORTS FROM DMV: as long as I keep the same vin number and the same engine they don't care what elese I change on the bike (I do not need to report it). So XL100 engine and at least part of the frame must stay. I would prefer to stay with a model from a year closer to mine, so to be convincing.

n2thumpers you said you owned the bike I want. Tell me more, what was it, and did you also alter it, if so how?

You also said <<someone like Dave Miller (DMC) or Cartwright conversions could alter it >> who are these nice people and how do I contact them. Phone number or link to their website por favor :))

PS: I just found a local Xr100 from 1992, exactely what I need to get the gas tank and saddle I need... Does anyone know how similar that bike is from the 1985 XL100? Maybe it could be bought and used as the organ donor for my mad scientist project hehehehe... Who could tell me the specs on these two bikes? Any expert who know older honda REAL WELL out there I could contact?

First, I never seen so many helpful replies in one day. Oh yeah your a chick. :) But to answer your questions. First. Your right, an 85xl is a pile. Yes, you do anything you want, but first what exactly do you want.

Here are you basic options:

1. Modify it so it is a cool vintage enduro. This is probably the hardest, because it would take tons of research and trail and error to everything just right. Plus, tons of time on ebay trying to get discontinued parts. Although, if you went with a pair of Works shocks, you be half way there.

2. Probably the easiest would be cut off the steering head like everyone else said and weld it to a 2004 crf100. Since the vin numbers are on the stem DMV doesn't care about anything else, not even the numbers on the motor. At that point it's a done deal, then just get decent suspension and a 120. In fact, your could throw (or sell) everything else away and get a new Baja design dual sport kit. The only thing you need off the XL is the pink slip and matching numbers. You could also buy from Honda a No number frame run your frame over with a truck, then take it to the CHP and they will transfer the numbers.

3. DMC conversion, the only way (OK there are a few ways) to successfully do this is via the CHP under special contruction using an unnumbered Honda frame. We used to switch the numbers ourselves, but evidently the state of California gets real pissed when you do that. :D So everything has to be by the book.

The only thing that matters is the pink slip and those numbers on the steering head. Everything else is fair game. Do all the lights work??? You could of done this a long time ago using the "special contruction" rule. It's kinda hit or miss with it. The one sticking point is you need a metal tank which you already have, so no worries there. I would also go to your local CHP office and talk to them too make sure anything you do is legal.

I can help you do it without doing anything illegal.

Check your PM's.

XRDEZRAT to the rescue.....

He knows stuff. Listen to him

Actually, everyone who has responded to you knows there stuff. You are working with a good groups of people


Are most of the parts on the XL100 and the XR100 the same? even if the XL is from 1985 and the XR from 1992? In other words, how much did that bike evolve between 1985 and 1992? Are wheels the same size? Same carb? Same engine? I raelly need to figure this out. Do any of you guys know ?

same wheels, probably same (or similar) carb... not quite sure about the engine though

PS: I do want to stay away from a more recent XR100. I think I need to stick with something that looks older, possibly closer to my 1985 model. It will be more cohesive in case I ever get stopped and also I like the look of those years. I do not care for the new, more thin and more flat back look. new saddles not so comfortable for longer road trips. Remember I ride my bike 60% streets and 40% dirt, so I need to make sure I can enjoy it both ways. I also only do pleasure riding, so no need for latest technology either... (except for the monoshock? LOL)

<<same wheels, probably same (or similar) carb... not quite sure about the engine though>>

yeah I am trying to figure out how much parts from that 1992 XR100 would fit my 1985 XL100, cause if a lot, thehn worth buying the whole bike not only for the frame and read shocks but also to dismentel for extra parts. hehehehehe...

NO!!!!!!!! Everything on the XL100 is a old school Honda twin shock model and have little in common with monoshock pro link models, except for the motor. (not even the wheels) You CAN'T fabricate the new stuff onto the old stuff, unless you do the 'ol steering head swap. The only way you could do it, is throw piles of hundred dollar bills at a good fabricator. It's probably at least 25 hours of work at $100 an hour. If you want a monoshock and the xr100's aren't the best monoshock around, then either you put your steering head on a 1992 xr100r like everyone said and call it a day or empty your bank account try to fab crappy a xr100 pro link system on your bike. If you like the look and feel of your XL, then restore it. Just get a set of Works rear shocks, which work Better than the stock pro-link suspension and get everything else working right. There are a ton of things you can do to your bike to make it out perform any late model xr100. I have a twin shocker that can do any jump and go through whoops that my conversions can do. It just depends on on hard you trail ride.

man... I remember I always wanted an old twin shocker. The only thing that held me back (my dad, I mean) was the points ignition. personally, I hate the rear suspension on the new xr100 because for one, the stock shock wont work for crap, the linkage ratio ain't that special and the stock bushings are worn after the first day. You should make your bike look like the modded vintage bikes on socal's site.

Do you have any pictures of your bike, as of now?

they made the prolink XLs in Japan, 1987 but they were not exported to anywhere else. do a search for a honda XLR80R sweet machine!

Im in the process of the same project as yours except mine are 80s not 100s. I have a 1985 XL80S parts frame, im using the its tripples and stem and cutting the VIN, steering lock tab, and helmet lock tab off and welding these onto the XR frame. I am a pro fabricator, we cant tag off-road bikes in my state so a baja kit wont get it here, Im having to do it the hard way. the only way you will be able to tell the VINs have been swapedwhen Im done is by X-ray and since I have titles for both in my name even if it was discovered what Ive done I dont think it would be that much trouble so im not gonna sweat it.

the XL engine has less power, alot less.. the cam, gearing, & carb are different (smaller) I would use the XR engine if you can, its much stronger (more power) you can use the XLs charging system in it if you dont mind 6volt lighting or you can get a ricky stator kit for 12v lighting if you use a '93 or later engine.

the only way I can tag an XR in my state is if someone from another state (where it is legal) tags it and transfers(sells) it to me, then i can re-tag it here but Ive only seen one on ebay in the past couple of years like that andit was too far from me.

I'll be running an XR100R engine but I like the 80 size better, its lighter and faster with the same engine.

if your XL100S is decent, I wouldnt part it out for this project, I would find a parts bike. the smaller XLs are quite collectable. 1985 was a good year too!

good luck with your project, Id love to see photos when your done if you decide to tackle it. Ive done alot of crazy stuff but my little XLR80R clone is one of the more ambitious even for me.

another option is the brand new 2005 Honda XR100SM, street legal motard but for now its only available in japan. its also the first XR100 to have disc brakes aswell as lighting, blinkers, etc.

wow...What a post!!!

What ever happened with your project?

I'm about to start a restoration on my very first bike that my dad bought for me in XL100s!!!

I live in NJ...and I plan on re-registering (last time it was reg was 1989!)...It will be a cool little street legal pit bike! I can't wait!

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