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About bkxl

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    Motorcycles, computers, surfing
  1. Glad I could help you diagnose your problem, Internalcombustion. In your case, I hope it's not the pulse generator and you're back on the road, or in the dirt. The internet is a place where you can find the answer to any question, and it's great to be the guy with the answer every once in a while. The problem was driving me nuts and making me really scared to ride the bike, but now I'm really enjoying riding it. And it gets 62 mpg when I commute with it. You guys are right on about the compression being enough to lock up the rear wheel when the spark cuts out, especialy with the 10.5 to 1 piston I have in it. As long as I'm posting, here's how to kickstart an XR or XL500, so if anyone searches the site for it, they'll find it. I've read some posts where people are really scared to kick old XRs over after getting bruised or broken feet. I had a pretty bad bruise on the bottom of my foot when I first got the bike and the pulse generator stopped working at a gas station, and I kicked it 50 times before giving up and letting it cool off. I was careful about the procedure for the first 40 kicks, then I got sloppy and got hurt. So here's how to kick start a Honda XR500, or kickstarting a Honda XL500. 1) It's a good idea to check the automatic compression release mechanism and make sure it has the correct tension. Do this every 6 months or so. 2) Make sure the bike is in neutral, the ignition switch is on, and the choke is all the way out. 3) Kick the lever slowly a few times until you get to a point where you feel a lot of resistance. You're not trying to start the bike with these kicks, so just push the lever slowly and gently. 4) Once you've found the spot where you feel a lot of resistance (TDC on the compression stroke) lift the lever up once and gently press it down once. 5) Now kick it hard and it should start.
  2. It was a pulse generator problem, and Honda has discontinued the part. It took me 5 months to find a used one at a junkyard. I rode the bike 170 miles this week without any stalling, including one 45-mile non-stop trip. I thought I'd better post this because I couldn't find anything in the forums about intermittent heat related pulse generator failure. It's real, and it could happen to you. And it's easy to fix if you can find the part. I bought a 1981 XR500 pulse generator, but it didn't work. It bolted in nicely and looked good, but Honda changed the CDI system in 82, which is the year of my electrical system. Not sure if a pulse generator from after 82 would work or not. So be warned: If you're buying an electrical part for an older XL or XR500, and it's from a different year of bike, make sure it will work before going to the trouble of paying a lot for it and installing it. Also, if you buy one from an XL from the right year, but your bike is an XR, make sure they're compatable. The XL has a more powerful alternator, so it may not work. My bike is a bit of a Frankenstein job, with a 1979 XR500 engine with a 10.5 to 1 Wiseco piston in it. It has the alternator and CDI parts from a 1982 XL500R in the body of a 1982 XL500R. It runs great now, and hope it will for a long time.
  3. Thanks for all the replies! This forum sure is active. I'm surprised a pulse generator is so cheap. I'm going to replace that first and see if the bike stalls. It seems to be heat-related, but also speed-related. I can go 11 miles in stop-and-go traffic to and from work without stalling, but if I'm going fast without stopping for an extended period of time, it will stall. Maybe it's hotter then, but I can't tell how hot. XRs Only sells an oil dipstick with a thermometer built into the cap. I may buy one so I can see exactly how hot it's running. I used to have one on my Sportster, and it was surprising how much the temp varied. At night in the rain in the winter, the oil temp would never get over 150 degrees, and it would get up to 220 in the summer. I don't think the engine is siezing when it stops because it kicks over easily without much resistance if I kick it right after it stops running. If it were siezed, it would probably be hard to turn over. I think the rear wheel skidded because of the high compression piston and the sudden loss of spark, and due to the fact that the engine was revving kind of high in a low gear when it happened. If I kick it a minute after it dies, it will start up and run perfectly, but it only runs for a minute or two before dying again. If I wait 20 minutes, it will run for 10 miles. I haven't tried letting it sit in my driveway and run to see if it will die under those conditions, because I'm afraid it would overheat and cause more problems if I let it idle for 20 minutes without driving anywhere. I'll post the solution when I figure out what the problem was.
  4. I don't think it was a gas cap venting problem, but if it happens again, I'll open the cap and see. Since it works fine for more than 10 miles at a time, I don't think that could be the cause. I once bought an Triumph Bonneville for $500 because it would only run for a minute before dying. I punched a hole in the gas cap, and it ran fine after that. Before I fixed it, it would sputter a little bit before it died, as it was running out of gas. The Honda engine cuts off suddenly like someone hit the kill switch. Hey, maybe there's something wrong with my kill switch. When I say the rear wheel locks up, I mean it makes a big skid mark on the pavement. I don't think the engine is siezed when this happens. It's just caused by the bike being light, the weight transferring to the front wheel, and the resistance from engine. Since the bike will kick over easily right after this happens, I don't think it's siezed. It even started and idled fine a minute after dying today, but then died again 2 minutes later. The spark plug color indicates the fuel mixture is correct. Have you guys heard of anyone having these symptoms happen because of an ignition component? Any ideas on what else might be causing it?
  5. I have an 82 XL500 with a 79 XR500 motor. It has the same ignition system as the 650s, so you guys should be able to help me with this. I've had the bike for about a month, and I love it except for one thing. If I ride it less than 10 miles, it works fine. More than 10, and it will suddenly stop running. If it sits for 20 minutes, I can restart it and go another 10 miles before it dies. If I restart it a minute after it died, It goes maybe half a mile. So my guess is that the pulse generator is getting too hot and stops working until it cools down. I've never worked on electronic ignitions before, so please reply and let me know if this is the correct diagnosis. Also, let me know any good sources for a new pulse generator. I'm hoping some aftermarket company makes a cheap one. And now a rant. I found this out while riding a twisty paved road in the mountains near some pretty big drop-offs, when the engine stopped and my rear wheel locked and skidded. Fortunately, I was upright and between corners, and I always cover the clutch lever, so I was able to get off the road and stop safely. The guy who sold me the bike a month ago told me everything worked fine, and it was a great bike but he needed the money, and he had another dirtbike he preferred to ride. I wish people would disclose problems with their vehicles which could potentially pitch the new owner off a cliff instead of pretending the bike is perfect to get a few more dollars. Thanks.
  6. Thanks, guys. I'll try the Honda part number first and see if they can give me something. The bike is rideable now, and I'm having so much fun with it that I don't want to take it apart and wait for parts. I will if I have to. I really appreciate your offer to make me a new gasket. I'll take you up on it if Honda can't help me. Thanks.
  7. I have a 1982 XL500 Honda with an XR500 engine. It was restored by the previous owner and works great except for the petcock. Fuel flows properly in the On position and doesn't flow in the Off position, but if I switch it to Reserve, gas comes out at the lever. Honda says they have discontinued the part and it isn't rebuildable. I have rebuilt the petcock on my Suzuki GS650G, which was held together with bolts. The Honda petcock is held together by rivets. Could I drill out the rivets, remove the lever, and replace the O-rings, then use nuts and bolts to hold it together? If so, does anyone know where I could find the right size O rings? Or do you know where I could get a whole replacement petcock that would fit and work the same? If you want to see my bike, here's a link. http://www.hoohoohoblin.com/HondaXL500R.htm Thanks.