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About BlueGrassBandit

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  1. BlueGrassBandit

    Is replacing this piston necessary?

    From what I can see from the pictures, the cylinder doesn't look to bad. There is definitely some wear on the exhaust Bridge which corresponds with the damage on the piston. It is hard to tell from the pictures if this would warrant a replate.
  2. BlueGrassBandit

    Is replacing this piston necessary?

    Show me a picture of the exhaust port from inside the cylinder. That is where the piston is damaged so there should be some issues there with the cylinder. Looking at the pictures, I can see some nasty damage to the head. It's likely a piston has grenaded in there previously. You will most likely need to send the cylinder off and have it replated. I have had good luck with powerseal. They do great work. A total rebuild is a pretty big task. Make sure you are confident in your mechanical skills before undertaking such an endeavor. Nothing worse than sinking over a grand in parts in that old motor and having something catastrophic go wrong. Lastly what did the transmission oil look like when you drained it? If the transmission is as rusted as the connecting rod, you may be better off cutting your losses.
  3. BlueGrassBandit


    2003 YZ 125
  4. BlueGrassBandit

    Is replacing this piston necessary?

    Don't pour kerosene in there. It will swell the crank seals and ruin them. I wouldn't call it a loss yet. Show us some pictures of the cylinder and let's go from there. My piston looked similar to yours. Turns out my cylinder had a sleeve in it, so I spent some time cleaning it up with a hone, replaced the piston and rings, and I have put several trouble free hours on it since then.
  5. BlueGrassBandit

    Does this cylinder have a sleeve in it?

    I put a straight edge in the cylinder and extended the power valve in. It looks like it's a little less than a 1/16" from being even with the cylinder bore. Honestly the bike ran great and sounded good before I tore it down. I only tore it down for preventative maintenance. I feel comfortable with honing it and putting in the new piston. I only gave $500 for the bike, so if I end up having to buy another cylinder down the road then it's really not a big deal.
  6. BlueGrassBandit

    Does this cylinder have a sleeve in it?

    They go in a little farther than shown in the picture. They are making contact with the sleeve though. I can grind on the corner of the power valve blade and they will come in farther. Just not sure how far in they should go.
  7. BlueGrassBandit

    Does this cylinder have a sleeve in it?

    I already bought a new wiseco pro lite piston for it. It's the same piston I took out of it. I am going to hone it and install the new piston and rings. If I like the bike then I may do the big bore kit on down the road.
  8. Recently bought an 03 YZ 125. It ran ok, but since I had no idea how many hours were on the top end, I tore it down to put in a new piston and rings. While cleaning up the cylinder I noticed that it looked like it had a sleeve in it. Take a look at the pictures and let me know what you think. Also how far should the power valve extend in towards the cylinder? This one lacks about an 1/8" from extending flush with the cylinder bore.
  9. I understood exactly what you meant. My point is what is so complicated about an impeller, bearing, gear, two radiators and some hoses compared to an air cooled thumper with cooling fins that are two small and an oil reservoir that could stand to be bigger all adding up to an engine that can easily over heat and cause issues with the head. How many water pumps you ever heard of going out on a DRZ? Its simpler in the sense that you don't have to check your radiator for coolant, but the trade off is well worth it. The fact is the XRL motor because it is air cooled is prone to over heating. Yes all bikes turn the oil black, but not many do in as few a miles as the XRL. I just disagree with the deciding factor of buying an XRL being that it is air cooled. I think that is a poor reason to buy the bike. There are many reasons to buy an XRL and I may buy one again on down the road, but it won't be just because it is air cooled.
  10. I know this is just one person, but there are many others who find the problem by having a cam or rocker eat up. If you get time read through the post I am linking. It is a good example of this issue. Again I like the XRL, but being air cooled is not an advantage for this bike. http://www.thumpertalk.com/topic/898690-xr650l-chatter-noise-from-engine/page__hl__valve%20seat
  11. I used to own an XRL. Before that I had a DRZ. The DRZ was the E model, but none the less I have experience working on both bikes. The Valve seat issue is not just something that happens in internet land. Alot of people have loose valve seats and don't even know it. They just think it is normal honda valve train noise. The XRL really doesn't have alot of valve train noise when everything is right. It should sound like a sowing machine. These things can run a long time with a loose valve seat. Can you argue with any of the three points I made? Does your XRL burn oil? Does the oil turn dark black in less then 1000 miles? Have you added or ever thought about adding an oil cooler to lower engine temps? I like the XRL, but to say that being air cooled makes it more reliable is a false statement.
  12. This is the main reason to stay away from the XRL. It kills me that people think air-cooled is so much more reliable. In reality it is not. The fact that the XRL is air cooled causes it some issues. Three things that prove this are #1 Look at all the TT members with XRL's that have installed an oil cooler to try to keep these things from overheating. #2 it only takes around 500 miles for the good ole XRL to turn the oil dark black. #3 The XRL burns oil even when new. You have to check the oil level often, and for sure will have to add oil between oil changes. This is a major problem if you buy a bike from some one who didn't realize this during the time they owned the bike. My Suzuki bandit is air/oil cooled, but it takes a couple thousand miles for the oil to even start to change color. If abused these bikes will get really hot. Since they don't have a radiator to puke out antifreeze when they are starting to get hot, most riders don't even realize the engine is overheating until the oil starts to break down and the valve train gets a little noisy. The main issue that usually results from the high engine temperatures is valve seats loosening up due to the difference in expansion and contraction of the aluminum head verses the hardened valve seat. You will see many members here who have chased exhaust valve clearance that won't stay constant. People who pull the valve cover to find they have one exhaust rocker that is almost gone, and the corresponding lobe on the cam ate all to crap. All this because these bikes run so hot.
  13. BlueGrassBandit

    XR650L chatter noise from engine

    I am thrilled you found the problem. If you would have put the bike back together and just decided to live with the noise it would have eventually caused some major carnage.
  14. BlueGrassBandit

    XR650L chatter noise from engine

    A valve seat that is worn would cause the bike to run bad all of the time. However a loose valve seat might rattle, and cause a slight bit of leakage. It could be that the valve seat only gets loose when the bike is hot. There for to find it you would need to make sure the bike was at operating temperatures during the leak down test. I have read a few posts were people had a valve seat come loose and cause all kinds of intermittent problems. If left alone it will soon break and cause major damage too piston and head. I don't know for sure that this is your problem. Since you have eliminated the possibility of the rattle coming from your cam and rockers, I would go on and pull the head to see what is going on.
  15. BlueGrassBandit

    XR650L chatter noise from engine

    As stated before, I think you have a valve seat problem. Your problem is not just a rattle, but "popping/ fluttering out of the exhaust when letting off the throttle". A worn piston could cause this, but not just occasionally. Either way it looks like the head needs to come off to inspect the jug, and the valves and seats. I feel like if your piston had premature wear due to lack of oil, you would have some serious damage on the cam and rockers. These are the first to go when you loose oil flow. Good luck and keep us posted on what you find.