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Mod Ideas / upgrades 83 XL600

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Ok so I just rescued this XL from near certain agonizing painful death due to the last few owners stupidity. It looks stock as far as I can tell. Im in the process of fixing the wiring and replacing / making missing parts. The air filter cage is missing and their discontinued, is there an aftermarket alternative or do I have to make a cage to fit the stock air filter? Im waiting on the carb gasket kit, the pilot is 55 and the main is 125. Is there a good size I should start with thats better than these? My altitude is 1000 feet and I go up to about 4500 max.

The last guy stripped some head bolts when he was in the process of ruining the motor, Is there a better way to go than just helicoil? Since Im probably going to have the motor out is are there any Mods I should do while its out? Are there any suspension, frame mods or lighting I should know of? Anyone use low profile led's?

thanks for any tips.

Voodoo

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First off the 83 xl600 is the hot rod of all the 600's and 650's already it has carbs that are about .1 larger bore than the later years,(the very reason I put 83's on my 86) and any of the dual carb bikes flow more air than the singles, that is why the 650's have the tiny exhaust header compaired to the 600's.

The air box is not hard to find I have bought one off ebay and it is complete and in good shape.

As far as heli-coils, that I think is the best repair you can do. the other inserts like keenserts are thicker, but that does not make them better. The keensert type inserts require drilling a much larger hole then you still have to tap, the heli coil needs a much smaller hole drilled which in some cases is a good thing as some thraded holes don't have much wall thickness

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If you are going to ride off road then flush rear turn signals are just about mandatory. I've got LED stalks in front and bulb. I also have an electronic flasher that doesn't care if it's driving LED's or old style bulbs. It always flashes just fine.

I agree that the many of the other thread repairs are better than the helicoil, but I think that due to the space issue a helicoil may be the way to go. Try some searches in this forum as it has been discussed many times before.

Ebay is the best resource for things like that air filter cage.

A higher compression piston is a common mod that get you the most bang for the buck.

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Cool thanks. Im trying to figure out how to make a bracket to hold my M4 rifle while im riding. I have a CR500 thats been my favorite for a long time but this bike looks like its going to be a blast. Ill start doing some more research on jetting.

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i found a air filter cage for my 83 on ebay, was $40 though 👍 for a small plastic piece. mine was missing most of the street legal stuff so i put a tusk dual sport kit on it.

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I used heli-coils on my head bolts, but I had to order extra long ones to make it work right. They come in 12mm lengths, I found 25mm and carefully put them in.

They don't get enough purchase on the cylinder in standard length.

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I put the 95 cr 500 43 mm usd front end on my 85 reshimed . works great .

put 88 xr 600 swing arm and shock ,as well as the 18'' wheel put a longer line on the canister and mounted it were the tool box was.Buy a ricky stator your leg will thank you, it's going to happen anyway, mite as well get it over with.👍

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upgrading the suspension makes those old bikes worlds better.

I have CR USD on my 85 and it's sweet, but it makes the front very tall.

I'd stay with XR forks the next time, sprung for your weight, 400 or 650R forks are pretty darn nice.

I have an extra 650L swingarm and rear brake setup (lever, caliper, brake line, master cyl) and a set of 2003 XR400 forks that have seen very little use. PM if interested.

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You guys are too cool. I love to see so much love from fellow riders 👍 Ill get some pm's out as I do need a few things to get her on the road. Thanks alot guys.

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Timesert makes a thin-walled insert that is a solid piece of steel, although I have never used them personally. I usually just use the longest HeliCoil I can instead.

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I put XR400 forks re-sprung for my weight and I have not had the urge to go USD badly enough to pursue that option.

I put '88, I think, rear swingarm and shock off a XR600, also resprung and It works well enough too, not to want to go the extreme mod route to fit anything else off a single carb bike.

If I wanted to go down the food chain to single carb, I would just get an XRL.

Mindblower, I have not thought of XRL rear swingarm setup, is it an easy swap? I know th eshock wont interchange, but the arm migh tjump on there. If I have any complaints it is about the rear brake effectiveness. Is the XRL brake much better?

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Is the suspension really that bad that I should be upgrading it?

Oh HE!! YES. 👍

It was that bad when NEW, now it's that bad X 28 years old. :ride:

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