BRP Shakedown run

Well, I've finally finished building up the stock '01 XR650R that I got in trade for my built XR400R this summer. It was time for a shakedown run to ensure everything is tip-top for the LA-Barstow-Vegas ride in a couple weeks.

I managed to wrangle my way north of all the fires here in SoCal, taking back roads up to Gorman so I could take her out in the Hungry Valley OHV Park.

It's been a couple years since I've been on a dirt bike so I took it

easy for a while, sticking to the power line road that circles the OHV

park. Eventually I started getting my dirt legs back, and began

exploring some of the more fun trails (of which there are several).

My favorite is the Northern most loop in the place called Mesa Loop.

It is very narrow, but steeply banked with lots of elevation changes,

some rocks, some roots and lots of switchbacks! :thumbsup: It is exactly the

kind of trail you throw the bike into turns, stick your leg out and

"gun it" so the back end can fishtail around the turn. ...too much

fun. In fact, at the end of the day, I just had to swing back up

there for another loop before heading to the truck.

I returned the BRP to stock gearing, which is probably too tall for a

tight place like HV, but then ...the XRR is too big for that place

anyway. Dropping an uncorked XR650R into Hungry Valley is like

dropping a great white shark into a goldfish bowl!!! [1] The XR4 had

a similar problem with gearing, but didn't have the torque to overcome

it, leaving you no choice but to gear it lower, and lose top-end

speed. The big XR doesn't have this affliction, which is why I wanted

to trade up. Even with the tall gearing, I was running 2nd gear most

everywhere. At one point, I even hit 3rd and 4th, but even on their

longer fire roads 60 mph felt too damned fast in HV, so it was back to 3rd for

speed, 2nd for most everything, and first for really tight stuff.

I made it a point to visit the long, whooped out sand wash on the

Eastern edge of the park so I could see how the pig behaves and get my

steering damper dialed in. The good news is, the big bike takes to

sand a lot better than the lighter 400 did. I also now have an open

terrain setting and a sand setting for the damper, and they are only 4

clicks apart. ...the bad news is, my absence from dirt riding was apparent in the sandy whoops! lol

The only issue is that the temp sensor on my Trail Tech, Vector computer

doesn't work. I'm going to call them Monday; it's just a plug & play

sensor, so if it not working, it probably means it's defective! lol

All in all, the bike ran flawlessly. The suspension is maybe a tad

soft, but soaked up everything I threw at it, and I do love me a plush

suspension off-road, so I'll leave it for now. The thing pulls like a

freight train and will rip my arms off if I'm not paying attention.

It actually has better torque than the big KTM 950 (which is more of a

rev-hungry engine anyway).

I had the presence of mind to bring my little Sony point & shoot and

snap a few photos (I added some captions). They are all here:

Feel free to leave comments; it's good to know someone is actually looking! :moon:

My favorite shot of the day though, right here for those too lazy to

view them all:




Notes: [1] I wish this was my analogy, but it's actually from an NFL commentator describing what it was like having Dick Butkus playing in the NFL.

Nice pictures and ride report. :thumbsup: I wish I had bothered to stop and take pictures on my ride today.

Thanks. ...and yes, pics are good!!! :thumbsup:

Great looking bike man.:thumbsup:

Try pushing the reset on the bottom of the TT, mine did the same thing,

You powered it up the 1st time without hooking up the sensor, If you push the reset it should work.

Nice bike!

Thanks for the tip, I'll give that a try! :thumbsup: ...they should put that in the manual! (and if they did ...I should learn to read better). :moon:

Thanks again,


thought about the dual sport ride myself but then i saw how much to ride on the street and dirt, i know they do some stuff to help people out but it was a bit pricey, if i wanted to ride all that id prolly just follow the crowd and take care of myself before i paid $150 for a ride on street and public dirt roads. Have fun bike looks awesome btw!!

Nice bike...I prefer torque over rev machines also. You gotta miss the XR400 don't you? Sand has never been an issue with my 400, but its not for everyone.

Great pics! Good lookin' bike.

Love that Mesa Loop myself.

Nice Bike! Great job setting it up. :thumbsup:


Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Similar Content

    • By TheLastByte
      Changing out my fork oil on a new to me 650l. What's generally recommended for stock springs and valving? 
    • By mrdsee
      ~177 Titanium bolts, nuts, washers etc leftover from various motorcycle projects. XR650, YZ 125, YZ250 a mix of new and used once hardware.
      Made by Mettec
      Over $2k worth of hardware
    • By Xr600guy
      So I don't seem to find my specific issue so here I am asking. 
      I have a 1997 Xr600r. It was recently re-jetted and has ran really well ever since until more recently it has begun to have this issue.
      Everything works fine. Kicks right away, nice and easy. Runs great, sounds great, purs. But when I'm downshifting and slowing down to a stop, if I let my hand off the throttle that's when it just dies. I found that I can counter this by lightly holding the throttle as I down shift (so I'm revving quite a bit during downshift).  But it hadn't done this before. 
      The only thing I've done that I suspect may have been an issue on my part was when I pulled out the engine to change the valve cover gasket and upon doing so perhaps when connecting the carb back to it, I may have missed something or made a crack in the boot? 
      Any ideas? Thanks 
    • By Kenya
      Hello all,
      There's been a lot of talk about how to register a dirt bike in states that don't allow it.
      I just moved to North Carolina and for the first time in my life might be able to afford a bike. I've been dreaming about an XR650R for a long time, but they're not cheap. Plated bikes seem to be more expensive too. So here's my question, has anyone tried to plate a dirt bike by adding all the necessary features and having it inspected as a custom bike? Anyone know of another way I can plate an xr650 in NC?
    • By Jsmoot
      Hoping for some help before I throw in the towel and end it all!
      Engine starts fine, runs and idles well for +/- 10 minutes, but cuts out while riding once the engine warms up (175 - 185) and intermittently cuts out thereafter (any speed/gear). It will start up after 30 seconds or so (but won't run for long before dying again). No spurting or surging.. just dies.
      I've replaced CDI (twice), Spark plug, spark wire and coil, and most recently pulse generator. I do have a 41mm Flat side carb from a CRF (and it has more power than the old carb setup), breathing through a Uni filter. Also, sealed battery tender battery (hasn't shown low when trickle charged).
      What's next on the test/replace list? Stator maybe? Please help...