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1981 XR200R Do over

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Well, I bought this damn thing a few months back for $200. With a small investment in used plastics, a new carburator, ans some RTV gasket maker I got it running tits. ordered a voltage regulator and some lights to go with my new flashy white paint job on the frame just for the sake of being able to see at night.

Then the other day I'm riding along and my chain comes off. I hadn't even recieved the lights yet. I get to looking at it and the frame is spreading apart and there is a decent sized crack on the left hand side.

What do I do about it? well. I sure as hell didn't take the whole thing to the scrap heap like I should have. NO. I had to go and buy a new to me frame off ebay for cheap.

Now that it's winter I have a perfectly good parking space for my car inside the garage that is instead filled with a dirt bike resto project that should, and I say should but probably wont, take a few days once the frame arrives to get back together.

I will take some photos of the chaos just to share with all of you who probably could care less about a 30 year old junker that I refuse to let die. Ever. and that's my promise.

Thanks for listening to the rant.

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Ahhh think about how much fun you're going to have putting this thing back together. You'll probably give it some silly name and it will be part of the family from here on out. Kudo's to you.

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So pictures will come but for the time being i am just going over all the stuff in my head that I think could be replaced while the engine is out. I am a cheapskate so I plan on only buying new parts if the old one is broke and not replaceable.

My current thought is that the kick starter is beginning to slip if you just jump on and kick and kick and kick. It doesn't slip if you slowly put pressure on it before kicking. and usually will fire in the first kick or two without slipping. should I replace that gear? how long is it going to be before it slips and wont connect ever again. Does replacing that gear require splitting the cases?

I'm lazy and will rebuild the engine when it starts to smoke and putt, but I don't want to do it just for a kick start gear. Opinions?

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So pictures will come but for the time being i am just going over all the stuff in my head that I think could be replaced while the engine is out. I am a cheapskate so I plan on only buying new parts if the old one is broke and not replaceable.

My current thought is that the kick starter is beginning to slip if you just jump on and kick and kick and kick. It doesn't slip if you slowly put pressure on it before kicking. and usually will fire in the first kick or two without slipping. should I replace that gear? how long is it going to be before it slips and wont connect ever again. Does replacing that gear require splitting the cases?

I'm lazy and will rebuild the engine when it starts to smoke and putt, but I don't want to do it just for a kick start gear. Opinions?

Id replace it. I mean you already have it apart and out of commission right? And it may/may not be the kick starter. Thats what the PO said mine needed. Kickstarer was fine, but a few other gears were shredded.

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The kicker problem is the ratchet and as you discovered careful use reduces slipping. This is not a problem unique the XR200s, but the fix requires splitting the cases. I have one XR with the same problem, just be careful with the kicker and you can kick the can down the road until you need to split the cases.

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The rubber bushings in the hub were shot too. and the circlip that holds the sprocket on was only half there.

These shots are of the bushing repair. instead of chucking out 10 bucks a pop for new bushings I used the metal centers from the old ones and drilled out some hard rubber beaker plugs. Used a little dish soap that when it dries is sticky. and slid em in. spent a total of $4 instead of $50.

there was some rubber still stuck to the outside of the old bushings so i put them in our backyard fire pit the other night. clean as a whistle.

two put together and installed

6310627079_2a4535a488.jpg

P1011995 by cgib123, on Flickr

luben em up.

6311147370_f9069df094.jpg

P1011997 by cgib123, on Flickr

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Some other pictures while I had the camera out.

The frame had the hoop chopped when I got it. when the plastics came I welded a piece of rebar that I bent up in place.

6310627143_17a8e84947.jpg

P1011916 by cgib123, on Flickr

the crack i am terrible at using a camera so their blurry but you get the idea

6311147422_e513a953f7.jpg

P1011914 by cgib123, on Flickr

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So despite my lack of desire to rebuild the whole engine while on this project I read another thread that inspired me to at least do the top end. Here are some pictures of the jug, head, and piston. Please help me interpret the photos. It all looks new enough, except the valves, that the top end could have been very recently been redone.

you know what these are so no descriptions.

6338653070_a792d6e64b.jpg

P1012009 by cgib123, on Flickr

6338652210_6f4d248e3e.jpg

P1012007 by cgib123, on Flickr

6337897567_38f3813d63.jpg

P1012003 by cgib123, on Flickr

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I did get some blue smoke before the tear down. And my question is, Timing? valves? or Rings? I didn't really check the valve adjustments because it was a beater. the ring gap at this point wasnt too bad and the timing was almost perfect from the previous work I did to get it running again.

Should I go ahead and replace these valves and have the head done? How much should that cost with a machinist. I am not too concerned with the piston so I will be putting new rings and gaskets and get that jug back on this weekend.

For the time being I still have not convinced myself I should split the cases. I really want my garage back so I can park out of the snow. Maybe if the frame takes too much longer getting back from paint. (That's the problem with having a friend do it for free at his work.)

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That piston looks to be a high compression unit. I think, if it were me, I'd put in new valves and valve seals (fairly inexpensive), wire brush the head, hone the cylinder, new rings and re-install that piston. I paid a local shop to re-hone my cylinder while I waited for just $15.

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Thanks Yogi. That's exactly what I'll do. Got word yesterday I should have the frame back before thanksgiving. Powder coated Honda Red.

Another completely different thing came up that I wasn't sure about, The old frame ('81) did not have a lube nipple on the neck. The new frame ('82) does. Was this a new feature on the '82 or did someone add it?

The brake hubs and wheels are all cleaned and back together. The next project I am not looking forward to is reconditioning the plastic. I hate sanding. and the front fender needs to have a crack repaired. Pictures to come of the before and afters.

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The zirk fitting was probably added by someone as I don't remember my 83 having one although they all should

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xr200 frames never came with grease fittings on the steering heads, but this was a very common modification in our neck of the woods by knowlegable owners.

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Doesn't look like a stock piston so someone has been in the motor before you.

What is the bore?

Stock pistons are cast and have "HO NDA" in the pin area.

Right you are. The bore is the 66.5mm kit. 66.8 with my inaccurate caliper and poor patience. I guess it could be a 67mm but I am hoping for the 66.5 any suggestions on finding new rings? I've been looking and that size is quite elusive.

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Unfortunately rings are unique to the piston so an ID on piston would indicate where to go for rings. Close examination of the piston may turn up some info that would help ID the supplier.

You said some smoke and for XRs that usually means valve seals, often it is easier to keep riding the bike if the compression is holding up. Did you do a compression test before teardown?

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The only compression test I really used, because I don't have a gauge, is to put my thumb over the hole and kick it. And it would damn near break my thumb off. I would say good compression. I just figured while I had the thing apart I should do it but... maybe not?

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Not sure about you guys in the U.S. but that piston does not look stock at all. What is the bore size???

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