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Questions about updating/upgrading an XL600

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(I also posted this in the XR600/650 section thought I would have better luck here)

Guys, I know this has been discussed in more than one thread but after searching I just can't find the exact info I'm looking for.

I recently purchased an '83 XL600 and would like to update and upgrade it and I have some ideas and just wanted to get some info about if they would work.

I plan on taking it down to the frame and rebuilding from there, heres what I have planned....

1. Upgrade the suspension front and rear with XR600 or CR500/250 replacements and I would also like to install an XR600 swingarm off of a newer bike if it will fit.

2. Install updated bodywork (including tank). I would like to see if early '90s bodywork will fit (or easily be made to fit). But I also really like the look of the '86 XR600,I would think it would come closer to fitting than the '90s stuff.

3.Theres a couple of parts that need replaced...the exhaust is the main one I'll replace it with an aftermarket setup.

4. Since its an XL I plan to "plate" it and have a decent DS when I'm done.

I know allot of you are thinking "why not just buy a newer XR"...well to me building or re-building is half the fun. And I've only got $75 in this one so far.

Here's what I'm starting with....


Thanks in advance for the advice and info.

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Why change the suspension. The bike is what it is. Its a good street bike with good offroad capabilities. I don't think its an offroad bike that's pretty good on the street.

I contemplated changing the suspension on my bike, but now that I have it running and have serviced the forks that are there, it is perfectly fine for its intended purpose, which is fireroads and easy trails. Its a little soft and bouncy compared to my Yamaha, but I may go to thicker oil or I may just lower my expectations.

btw... I have an xl500 (82). Here is what it looks like


I do plan to get everything restored first and then repaint the frame. It is a project bike and I am doing it for the fun. I did get to buy a new grinder/polisher/buffer to work on the rust. But that was only $80. The goal here is to see how little I can spend. I am $400 into my project so far.

Keep us posted of your progress.

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If updating suspension go either cartridge forks, get a fork brace and emulators or don't bother. just get heavier springs. back, just get an adjustable shock. Lots of mods for the motor. new cam, new carb and exhaust does most of it.

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