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Author Topic: 78 XS1100 Cafe Project  (Read 1015 times)

Offline jaedavinci

  • Posts: 7
78 XS1100 Cafe Project
« on: Apr 20, 2017, 11:45:56 »
HeyHey, I ended up getting an 78XS1100 for free! its in decent shape visually but runs EXCELLENT and all wiring works. I am going to make a fun Cafe Racer out of it and was wondering if anyone had any ideas and some steps to take.. (could anyone point me to a fuse box relocation forum?) Ive heard "sell it" .."Get the 650" but honestly I got it for free.. summers coming up and it will be fun to work on this a weekend project.. Let me know! thanks!


Offline JustinLonghorn

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Re: 78 XS1100 Cafe Project
« Reply #1 on: Apr 20, 2017, 12:47:02 »
The XS is a fun muscle bike. Build it and enjoy it, man!
I'm going to eat your brains and gain your knowledge.

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Offline canyoncarver

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Re: 78 XS1100 Cafe Project
« Reply #2 on: Apr 20, 2017, 13:04:16 »
Is there really such a thing as a free motorcycle?    Congrats on the score.  You can make some mod money selling that fairing and fender to somebody.  New seat and bars and ride it.....
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Offline TheCoffeeGuy

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Re: 78 XS1100 Cafe Project
« Reply #3 on: Apr 20, 2017, 14:11:37 »
1100 is a HUGE  cafe racer.   More likely come in a a brat. Jmo

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1968 Harley Aermacchi ML 125 Rapido, restored
1972 Honda Cl 450 engine rebuild, a day rider soon, now sold
1980 Suzuki GS850GL Street Brat  My other day bike
2000 Harley 1200 Sport S My day bike
1982 Honda CB650 Chopper light

Offline advCo

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Re: 78 XS1100 Cafe Project
« Reply #4 on: Apr 20, 2017, 14:17:47 »
That's a nice bike to get for free. Like CC says though, there's no such thing as a free motorcycle.

Since riding season is approaching, i'd recommend ditching the fairing, putting some medium height bars on it, and getting it reg'd and ride it.

Do 1 project at a time, so you can keep it rideable while the weather is nice. Maybe a new front fender.
"He broke the mirrors off his Cadillac, 'cause he doesn't like it looking like he looks back."

74 CB360 - Luna - http://www.dotheton.com/forum/index.php?topic=63294.0
82 GS550L - Tracker-ish - http://www.dotheton.com/forum/index.php?topic=67229.0 - Sold
74 XL350 - The Turd - http://www.dotheton.com/forum/index.php?topic=70252.0
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Offline Ryan Stecken

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Re: 78 XS1100 Cafe Project
« Reply #5 on: Apr 20, 2017, 14:18:42 »
Turning a XS 1100 into a sleek lean and mean caferacer is like turning a walrus into a Victoria Secret Model.

Believe me, I just acquired 2 XS 750´s....heavy but muscular bikes.

Ride it, maintain and then think about what you want to change....the fairing is too epic.

Offline GoCrazy

  • Posts: 61
Re: 78 XS1100 Cafe Project
« Reply #6 on: Apr 20, 2017, 15:29:58 »
I know a guy who is over 2 m tall and he looks like a pizza boy on a scooter even o gs750 :D visually balanced, it may make a good cafe :)

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Offline jaedavinci

  • Posts: 7
Re: 78 XS1100 Cafe Project
« Reply #7 on: Apr 20, 2017, 15:58:29 »
"Turning a XS 1100 into a sleek lean and mean caferacer is like turning a walrus into a Victoria Secret Model." AAAAAHAHAHAH!!!

Yea its a beast. It used to be my dads, i managed to save him a couple grand on a bike he wanted ,and eventually bought, so in return he said i can have his old bike (the xs1100) to do what i wanted with.. I ride a  00 Buell X1 all streetfightered out, thats my summer toy and now i was going to take my time and slowly build something out of this. 

Offline 540Nova

  • Posts: 86
Re: 78 XS1100 Cafe Project
« Reply #8 on: Apr 20, 2017, 20:18:22 »
I think it'll be cool, do it.


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Offline cxman

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Re: 78 XS1100 Cafe Project
« Reply #9 on: Apr 20, 2017, 21:26:30 »
i have a xs1100 and they are fun an challenging bikes to ride

they corner ish they brake ish and the suspension will bring you closer to god

look up a term called shaft jacking

what they do well is accelerate i have mikuni flat slides on mine and a modified ignition and exhaust  it pulls 117 hp at the rear wheel

it bucks like a mule though

now as to the fuse box they are all crap but one of the guys on the xs1100 forum has a pretty much plug and play solution

another of the guys there has a fork brace he makes that works well

im sure jetmech marty will be along to tell how its all supposed to be done soon

 
1978 CX650 Super Deluxe
1979 XS1100 Special
1980 XS650
1980 cx500  The Beast
1983 GL650 i
1983 cx650 Custom
1973 CB450
1973 cb750
1980 cb750
1981 cb650
1982 cb900 c
1977  gl1000
1976 gl1000 LTD
 1983 GL1100 Nekid
and a bunch of others

Offline Ryan Stecken

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Re: 78 XS1100 Cafe Project
« Reply #10 on: Apr 21, 2017, 13:49:01 »
The petcocks are famous for broken membranes.
I switched mine out for 'normal ones' from mikexs.
If the membrane breaks,fuel will flow down into the gear box....

Open up the gear box oil plug and have a smell...if it smells like gas you know...
« Last Edit: Apr 21, 2017, 13:51:39 by Ryan Stecken »

Offline jaedavinci

  • Posts: 7
Re: 78 XS1100 Cafe Project
« Reply #11 on: Apr 27, 2017, 12:19:09 »
So, after some research and seeing people comments I think a Brat style is what I'm after. The cafe racer look is sick! Only if done proper and to the fullest. The xs1100 might not be the best base. After day 1 of Project: JohnnyBrat.  Check the progress! (The fork won't be lowered that much!)



Future Mods:
Brat seat
Clip on fork bars
Round headlight
Relocated gauges  (stock to keep that 70s feel)
Kill switch relocation
Chopped and rounded seat rail
New front fender (shorty)
Pull the muffler and find a nicer sounding short pipe.


Any other suggestions for this project? Let me know!

Check my instagram at

@jaedavinci

Offline jetmechmarty

  • Posts: 291
Re: 78 XS1100 Cafe Project
« Reply #12 on: Apr 29, 2017, 23:42:49 »
Stock clocks?  That is one big ugly console.  Going where you're going, they'll have to go.

Is the bike sorted?  Does it run?  I'd stop there and do all of the service items.  I bet the swingarm bearings have never been greased.  Steering bearings and fork oil need service too.  Valves adjusted?  Cam chain?  CV carbs like the airbox.  Looks like you might have new brake lines.  Good!  If fenderless, you'll have to have a fork brace.

You may consider a stockish redo, with bulky offensive parts replaced.  I agree, square headlight is ugly, as is the aforementioned speedo-tack.  Turn signals are also giant.  Minimize that stuff with maybe a Maier fairing and it will look sporty.  The stock seat on those looks good already.  Euro controls to get your feet farther back are a nice option too.

BTW, that was a pretty cool period paint job it was wearing.  Best wishes!
Marty (in Georgia)
XS650

Offline jetmechmarty

  • Posts: 291
Re: 78 XS1100 Cafe Project
« Reply #13 on: Apr 29, 2017, 23:59:10 »
Looking at your photos, your forks are not 1978 XS1100E.  They're from a Special.  I have to wonder if the triple clamps are standard or Special, because they should match for proper handling.  Your handlebars are also Special.  Is the rear wheel 16 or 17"?  17" would be correct for a 1978 standard.

Marty (in Georgia)
XS650

Offline jaedavinci

  • Posts: 7
Re: 78 XS1100 Cafe Project
« Reply #14 on: May 13, 2017, 10:51:57 »
Hey Jetmechmarty ,

The entire front end is off a special, as far as i know. With regards to mechanics it runs perfect! I will add a video to youtube showing a cold start after like months and months of sitting. I will have to go through it for sure but, it runs great i was actually SOOOO surprised!

I just picked up clip on bars and a headlight bracket. I do however have my old round headlight off of  a Buell X1 project i did a while back which im going to install. Im still not 100% certain what im going to do with that big 'ol honking gauge cluster though LOL. (suggestions would help) I do like the look of the one square gauge. I want it looking a bit true to era and time period. 

As far as future mods go hee is a list:
-Clip on bars
-Round head light
-LED flashers (new no load flasher unit)
-Brat seat with Seat hoop
-LED strip tail light with turn signals integrated
-Re-located push start using a RED light elevator button
-Modded gauge cluster
-Bar end mirrors


> Pending Video on Youtube <

check out DaVincis Garage on youtube for some videos >> https://www.youtube.com/user/ggrease