I need XR650R expert advice

As I've posted before, I bought a brand new leftover '05 XR650R three weeks ago & I'm having problems with it from day one. I know, I've read all the web sites concerning this bike (Pig Pen, Borynack, used the searched feature on this forum, etc.).

This is what I've done so far to it:

-Changed the pilot to a 68s, needle ( 3rd position) & needle seat to the 16012-MBN-641 PN, removed the flapper plate, flushed the carb with solvent to clean it out since it was sitting at the dealer for such a long time, swap the carb insulator to the round one, and a 168 main jet (according to the Pig Pen's carb chart for temp & elevation for my area).

-Removed both the plastic & rubber covers in the airbox and cut the center piece in the exhaust.

-Have the pilot screw @ 2 turns out from fully closed

-Adjusted the throttle cables to the 1/16"-1/4" slack according to the service manual.

-Cleaned the air filter.

-Since I live in a tropical island where the temperatures range from 80 to 90 (that's in the winter 'cause in the summer it gets all the way to 100's) & these engines run hot, I removed the thermostat.

Before performing these mods it was pretty hard to start, at times gas came out of the vent tubes. But now seems to be worse 'cause it won't even start, I mean I've kicked the thing for a good half hour & at times it seems to go for a milisecond at most. Another thing I've noticed is that as I kick it, a big shot of gas starts to come out the vent tube & it slows as I'm trying to find TDC to kick it again. If i get tired & stop kicking it, the gas eventually stops coming out of the vent tubes.

As a side note I'd like to mention is that even though I have the electronic service manual & read on how to set the float level, I couldn't understand where to measure from or if I need to get honda's special gauge to measure so I haven't set the float level. Another thing I haven't done is to plug the hole in the Air Jet Cut Off valve like Borynack.com suggests in his site for the carburator fix.

By the way, the starting procedure I've tried is:

-If is cold:

Set the choke, use the decompression to kick it 4 or 5 times, then find TDC & give it a hard kick with no throttle whatsoever. Doing that the bike made a sound thru the exhaust as if it was flooded, so I stopped doing that. The only way to get it started was to just kick it like 20 or 30 times with no throttle until she fired up (all this was before performing the mods).

What else can i try?. Change the plug?. Check the valves? (which I have no idea on how to do it).

Sorry for the long post, I just wanted to give you an exact idea of how I'm doing things (weather I'm right or not) & how she's behaving so hopefully someone will guide me in the right direction to get this bike running as best as I can. Any help will be greatly appreciated. :cool::applause::busted:


Sounds like a float level issue. measure from the top of the float with the carb upside down. To the base where the o-ring sits. set the float down just as it touches the needle or blow through a hose to see when it shuts off.

But first remove the needle and seat to make sure nothing is under it,and check the valve clearances.Mine is real pain to start when they get even slightly tight.

Thanks a lot!!!


1. Make sure those valve clearances are spot-on.

2. Is the float rubbing on the inside of the carb body, causing it to stick open?

3. The carb should not "pee" this much. When you reassembeled the carb, were you REAL careful to get it just right? There are some really tiny parts in there (the washers and o-rings on the pilot screw, for example) and the thing is sensitive.

4. Don't give up.


Where do you live in PR? I lived there for 7 years. Anyway, go back and re check everything in the carb, and go up on the main to a 175 while you are there. My bike came with a 68, 168, comp needle 2nd seat, and it was hard to start as well. Then I went to a 68S, 175, comp needle 3rd seat, and it has started first kick most of the time now for me. Our riding conditions are pretty close. Also, it will not hurt to check the valve settings just to be sure.

To start, (cold) I turn the gas on, choke on, then decompress and kick thru 3 times, then I release the decomp lever and kick thru to find TDC, then decompress to be able to slightly go past TDC, then release the decomp and let the kick start come back up and kick her like you want her to start. Never give it gas during the process. Mine starts first kick most times now.

Good luck and let us know how it goes...:cool:

Remember that bike sat most likely with gas in it for over 2 years.My guess is the float is stuck or the float needle isn't seating letting the gas shut off.the rubber end of the float needle is hard or deteriorated.

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