DO THE TON

Blood Sweat Tears and Grease => Projects => Cafe Racers => Topic started by: sandmanred on Mar 29, 2019, 08:33:07

Title: XS400 cafe build
Post by: sandmanred on Mar 29, 2019, 08:33:07
I've been lurking for awhile.  Lots of nice work on this forum.  I'm relatively new to motorcycles so I definitely need help with with all the mechanics and where to get stuff.  This is my 3rd build.  I've posted elsewhere in hopes of getting the tech support I need and I'm not always getting what I need.  So I'm making a catch up post to cover since last November.

Bought a not running 78 XS400.  A little carb cleaning and point setting and a clutch rebuild and it was running.  Started with the bars, then the tank then the seat.  Actually made a little detour to make a tail cowl but then got asked why my bike only have one seat?  So, finish the detour and start a seat for two.  I left the detour out for now.  I may go back later and do a seat to go with the tail but probably not right away.  As it stands now it's ready for shakedown, just need some warmer weather.

The big question right now is the best upgrade for the head light.  It still has the stock 35w incandescent bulb.  Seems like the easiest is to go to an H4 35w but I'm not finding anyway to do it without changing the whole bucket.  The Emgo one I found says it's compatible but the hole on the back is much lower than stock and I'm not sure all the wires will reach.  The stock reflector and bulb assembly has special gear to adjust the beam that you don't find on standard replacement reflectors.  I'd be open to LED conversion head lamp but then you run into the same problem not having all the gear on the reflector to mount into the stock bucket.  Any advice welcome.

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Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: JadusMotorcycleParts on Mar 29, 2019, 08:51:51
Wow, crazy skills man.  Stunning tank!
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: brad black on Mar 29, 2019, 09:10:44
that's just showing off.
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: advCo on Mar 29, 2019, 09:19:08
Nice fab work.

You can change to a H4 35w/35w bulb by cutting your old bulb out of the sealed beam carefully with a dremel, and epoxying a H4 housing in place on the back of the sealed beam. Alternatively, Sparck Moto sells LEDs you can retrofit into your existing sealed beam using a similar method.

Lots of vendors sell LED lights that will drop in to your OE bucket as well.
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: Sav0r on Mar 29, 2019, 09:27:07
That way that seam fit up on the tank makes me warm inside.
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: pidjones on Mar 29, 2019, 09:46:15
Gave me my second morning wood.
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: sandmanred on Mar 30, 2019, 11:07:38
Thanks for the comments.

First shakedown run complete.  No major problems noted.  Now on to a bunch of little details before paint/powder.

(https://i.postimg.cc/T10HB2Yk/IMG-2273.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/dZ7ByYCd)

(https://i.postimg.cc/CLM2k8m9/IMG-2274.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/z3Mp1ymk)

(https://i.postimg.cc/qBxYNwX8/IMG-2275.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/3WW96gqR)
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: pidjones on Mar 31, 2019, 09:50:37


Thanks for the comments.

First shakedown run complete.  No major problems noted.  Now on to a bunch of little details before paint/powder.

I like it Just. Like. That.
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: sandmanred on Apr 24, 2019, 22:53:44
Re-do of front fender mounts underway.  Trimmed off plate stock mounting of front fender and replacing with 5/16 round. 

(https://i.postimg.cc/Bb9NJ4hk/IMG-2490.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/tZkF5QGN)

(https://i.postimg.cc/kGQs4zz4/IMG-2492.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/ctJwk9sy)

(https://i.postimg.cc/44VBBHyg/IMG-2493.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/t7R3gTFS)
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: advCo on Apr 25, 2019, 01:50:36
Would really love to see some aluminum come out on the tail section. Cuff the fabric a few inches from the back and let some of that metalwork show.
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: sandmanred on Apr 25, 2019, 08:08:13
Would really love to see some aluminum come out on the tail section. Cuff the fabric a few inches from the back and let some of that metalwork show.

You and me both.  There's foam all the way to tail so I can't just remove the covering.  I have cowling made, spent a month doing it.  But my better half asked me 'why do all your bikes only have one seat?'  Implying she might actually go with me if she could.  So I figure I should have one the stable that will seat two.  That started the seat that's upholstered front to back.  I've been trying to keep it so I could swap the seat/cowl with two-up seat but some of the choices I made to mount the fully upholstered seat complicate that.  So I might have to go the route of a slip on cowling or get creative with how connect the alternate seat/cowl assembly.  Here's a few pics before tank was done that show the tail cowl and a rendering of what the seat might look like with a cowl.

(https://i.postimg.cc/Qdg1qYLX/IMG_1627.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/k242JcXZ)(https://i.postimg.cc/TwPjJ3pq/IMG_1641.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/Jy9B1m3G)(https://i.postimg.cc/FHBwbC9Y/IMG_1609.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/Xr9248BW)(https://i.postimg.cc/yYNM8r1N/IMG_1675.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/bdKC6g2X)(https://i.postimg.cc/7hdByBcL/InkedIMG_1689_LI.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/n9KK41n8)
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: pidjones on Apr 25, 2019, 09:17:13
Why not two full seats? Not that hard to change, and not that hard or expensive to build. Better than a painful compromise, IMHO.
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: sandmanred on Apr 25, 2019, 12:17:51
Alright.  Thanks for the nudges.  I was going to put off the solo seat but I have to agree I like the cowling.  Your suggestions made me go try it on again.  I hadn't fit it to the bike since the tank was done.  With out the tank the cowl looks big but I think the balance is okay now that they are both there.  Last pic is a rough rendering of the seat profile I plan.

I will first re-do the head light mount with some curvy stays like the front fender and probably redo the side covers too to streamline them a bit and also get going on the new solos seat pan.

(https://i.postimg.cc/NjjDZMFM/IMG-2494.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/D8R1X7qk)

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(https://i.postimg.cc/gkdNq4P3/IMG-2500.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/vDqrGrTm)

(https://i.postimg.cc/GmgKRCTj/IMG-2500-LI.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/dhdrRgB7)

Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: advCo on Apr 25, 2019, 12:36:32
Looks great, although I agree it looks just a bit too big compared to the tank. Needs to be about 80% that size and I think it would be perfect.
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: sandmanred on Apr 28, 2019, 19:30:30
Progress on head light brackets.

(https://i.postimg.cc/DyJzPSn9/IMG-2510.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/JG8m14yx)

(https://i.postimg.cc/fRYT1135/IMG-2511.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/218DZc7B)

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Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: sandmanred on May 04, 2019, 07:44:06
Replacing side covers with something a little more fitted.  Still working out the mounting but the fit looks OK.

(https://i.postimg.cc/XNPfLgsN/IMG-2521.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/xqKNTLrB)
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: sandmanred on May 10, 2019, 10:03:26
Sample back from powder coating.  Candy red over brushed aluminum.  Thinking about this for tank and side covers too.  My only worry is my tank isn't smooth enough. 

<iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/SJnUeqU1mgU" frameborder="0" allow="accelerometer; autoplay; encrypted-media; gyroscope; picture-in-picture" allowfullscreen></iframe>
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: cb360j on May 10, 2019, 11:16:10
What is your process for bending the metal for the headlight covers and front fender mounts, i think it looks sweet.
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: sandmanred on May 10, 2019, 12:03:18
Thanks!

I make a pattern pieces of 3/32 or 1/8 welding rod and then bend over this simple mandrel.  The piece is this pic is cut-off, I usually leave it long enough that I can bend by hand.  You can work your way back and forth along the bar bending and unbending as needed to match the pattern.

For the fender mounts I taped the fender on the tire with holes and the little slugs bolted in place on the fender and the flats drilled and bolted to the forks and then make pieces to connect them of 5/16 cold rolled round.

(https://i.postimg.cc/KvWdWLW5/IMG-2534.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/LnzCYq2q)
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: Kunipshun Fit on May 10, 2019, 13:08:48
Great tip, Sandman.
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: sandmanred on May 11, 2019, 20:08:29
Fender back from powder coating.  It's a candy over brushed aluminum.  It looks great, the pics don't show the depth or the brushed texture underneath.  Still not 100% committed as the tank may just not be good enough for a shiny finish without some bondo.  Rattled canned the brackets for now just so I could see it put together.  And got a side panel tacked in place. 

(https://i.postimg.cc/1ztc1qBr/IMG-2539.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/MnCjyXhn)

(https://i.postimg.cc/x8rKmF26/IMG-2540.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/WFnFL8tZ)

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(https://i.postimg.cc/cHtRrGVK/IMG-2542.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/ZBZBM2YZ)
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: sandmanred on May 19, 2019, 17:14:08
A bit of re-shaping on the set and a new cover.  Clamp on walking foot on sewing machine helps but I'm guessing still not quite like a true walking foot machine.  Quilt top stitch came out okay but still a little inconsistent on perimeter stitch but better than the last one.  It definitely comes out smoother when you just glue the perimeter up under the pan, the last one I glued the whole thing down and it makes the seams show up a lot worse and telegraphed through any defects in the foam layer.

(https://i.postimg.cc/Bnm4JT7t/IMG-2564.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/sMGtchrR)

(https://i.postimg.cc/Xq60sQq1/IMG-2567.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/JDxgn3bj)

(https://i.postimg.cc/TwD6jZdW/IMG-2568.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/hzc6cZ7S)

(https://i.postimg.cc/VNTwCY88/IMG-2570.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/jWzBVY2g)

(https://i.postimg.cc/nLMZrXN2/IMG-2571.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/bGX4FwyS)

Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: advCo on May 20, 2019, 10:13:59
That came out great, nice work. I've wanted to have a go at sewing my own seat covers but don't have access to the proper machine.
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: sandmanred on May 20, 2019, 18:33:18
That came out great, nice work. I've wanted to have a go at sewing my own seat covers but don't have access to the proper machine.

Thanks.  This one was done with an old Bernina that my wife bought at an estate sale for $9.  It's not an industrial machine but pretty heavy duty.  I added a walking foot attachment that seems to help too.
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: sandmanred on May 26, 2019, 09:08:50
The butt end of the left muffler fell out today so I'm going to make a go at new mufflers.  A buddy and I built a slip roller for the cones.  I'd hoped it would handle 18 gage but it looks like it will only do 20 gage in stainless.  So far I have one cone.

(https://i.postimg.cc/zGZpMvW3/IMG-2547.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/7f9gJxKy)

(https://i.postimg.cc/J4gZnHjm/IMG-2592.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/0bYbXQtH)

(https://i.postimg.cc/DwXsbfcG/IMG-2594.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/bZqd7hWY)
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: trek97 on May 26, 2019, 12:36:50
This is a really neat build.  Your metal skills blow me away.  Ive made a couple seat covers, and yours is amazing.  Really cool stuff 8)
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: sandmanred on May 27, 2019, 07:48:07
This is a really neat build.  Your metal skills blow me away.  Ive made a couple seat covers, and yours is amazing.  Really cool stuff 8)

Thanks for taking time to look and the comments!
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: sandmanred on May 29, 2019, 07:58:14
More progress on exhaust.  Still a few mods needed on the slip roll but it worked pretty good.  Long cones were not too round before capping so I stuffed them into a round hole as I tapped the end cap in, worked as a nice secure holder too.  The baffles are removable for tuning.  A short reverse cone will somewhat hide the baffle but still allow access for removal.



(https://i.postimg.cc/VLnXSZNk/IMG-2597.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/KRc1wNL6)

(https://i.postimg.cc/2SYhndqF/IMG-2599.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/N5NKcHk5)

(https://i.postimg.cc/FF2jHXN6/IMG-2600.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/237q0Jqd)

(https://i.postimg.cc/MX2K2Dks/IMG-2602.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/vxhd55Z9)

(https://i.postimg.cc/yxSYbGGg/IMG-2606.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/xNn2k6nn)

(https://i.postimg.cc/MZc7wp2R/58077963846-C368-A70-A-CBA7-4023-8-C20-85-FB6-F189-D4-A.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/JtLDcmh4)
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: sandmanred on May 30, 2019, 07:54:05
Not as far as I hoped to get today.  Ran out of argon >:(.  Ran to get more before supplier closed.  Got home, hooked up and found it's not argon though it is labelled >:( >:(.  Too late to get back to supplier.   >:( >:( >:(  Borrow some from a friend.   :)

I did get them installed and a quick test run but too late for finished pics.

(https://i.postimg.cc/0jg7dbZS/IMG-2617.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/Q9bBjN2N)

(https://i.postimg.cc/3R0gvgj7/58087767735-485518-E9-E9-A0-46-F9-90-F7-59-D622-F9-FC78.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/tZyZ0nmm)
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: JustinLonghorn on May 30, 2019, 08:17:37
Nice work, man.
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: sandmanred on May 30, 2019, 14:28:20
Nice work, man.

Thanks!
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: sandmanred on May 30, 2019, 14:30:40
Final polish.

One short ride last night.  Definitely louder than stock.  Pulled one plug and looks nice and tan.  A little rumbling on decel but no backfires.  Time for some more miles.

(https://i.postimg.cc/0Nqkm46c/IMG-2620.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/rDQ22QNr)

(https://i.postimg.cc/SK7yGGCq/IMG-2621.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/mckfLCm6)
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: sandmanred on Jun 24, 2019, 10:44:40
Going to take one more run at the seat cover and start tear down for paint and powder.  I picked up a new sewing machine that handles much heavier thread than what I had before.  Going with black vinyl and a red top stitch the match the red that the tank and front fender will be.  Top two pics show laying out the stitch lines for the quilted section of the seat.  The front fender is already powder coated candy red over brushed aluminum.  Rims to be gold and frame gloss black.

Any thoughts on the side cover color?  I was thinking the same red as the tank but it's also been suggested to go black like the frame.

(https://i.postimg.cc/wBWhZRfj/IMG-2733.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/d7ykT3cb)

(https://i.postimg.cc/26V4DjMF/IMG-2734.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/Q9ZBgDXH)

(https://i.postimg.cc/50T8NdMc/IMG-2735.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/0MGzc4QZ)
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: sandmanred on Jul 03, 2019, 07:57:52
I'm all torn down for paint and powder coating.  The red on the fender goes on the tank and side covers, gloss black frame and gold rims.  Tank gets some gold graphics to tie in the rims.

Here are the rims underway.  Prime, followed by gold base and 2k gloss top coat.  First time using rattle can 2k top coat.  I'm impressed with the gloss and how it wets out.  We'll see how it holds up.

(https://i.postimg.cc/9fH9Hrgj/IMG-2754.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/DS50qyKC)

(https://i.postimg.cc/KzJ3TQGZ/IMG-2755.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/YGLSK6LV)

(https://i.postimg.cc/QtXWVvr4/IMG-2756.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/HJhLhZnX)

(https://i.postimg.cc/R01HS42J/img2757.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/DWZZ5kv7)
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: sandmanred on Jul 12, 2019, 10:42:27
Waiting on powder coated parts.  All my painting of little bits and bobs is done.  Almost everything is de-greased.  Tires remounted.  Taking another run at the seat cover with bigger topstitching.  And then hopefully start re-assembling sometime next week.

(https://i.postimg.cc/Wtccm4SP/IMG-2780.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/2LGtrrPH)
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: sandmanred on Jul 14, 2019, 08:20:25
Engine in the frame  8)

(https://i.postimg.cc/3JG1RMSm/IMG-2788.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/N5gmJnwj)

(https://i.postimg.cc/K8r5PPyY/IMG-2790.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/VJvM1bvy)
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: sandmanred on Jul 17, 2019, 12:02:27
Waiting on tank and side covers from powder coating.  Tank and side covers will be the same red as the fender.  Exhaust wrap on headers is next.  Along with the latest seat cover attempt.

(https://i.postimg.cc/cCGW71TS/IMG-2803.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/phC3RHgG)
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: sandmanred on Jul 17, 2019, 19:47:15
Header wrap in place.  I hate putting that stuff on but it dresses up my beat up headers.  Ties in nice with the gold on the rims I think?

(https://i.postimg.cc/nrB6ZMgP/IMG-2805.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/H8WS9Wpw)
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: ridesolo on Jul 17, 2019, 22:51:55
It's looking nice.
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: sandmanred on Jul 18, 2019, 18:57:36
Thanks!

Still waiting on tank and covers, should be soon.  Put on the latest seat cover today.  This one has a much larger top stitch and few less defects than the last one ;-)  The white marking in the close up needs to be wiped off, they are layout lines.

(https://i.postimg.cc/L4BfjX34/IMG-2809.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/rzsKkqH7)

(https://i.postimg.cc/KvGTf20P/IMG-2811.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/5jrj9Zdy)

(https://i.postimg.cc/pXsF16Sg/IMG-2812.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/vc6T43bz)
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: pidjones on Jul 18, 2019, 22:10:59
Gorgeous!
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: sandmanred on Jul 22, 2019, 08:48:49
Gorgeous!

Thanks!
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: sandmanred on Jul 25, 2019, 23:03:11
Tank and battery covers back from powder coating!  Still some decals to come but here's what it looks like so far.  Pics don't capture it well but there's a brushed finish under the candy red that really pops when the sun hits it.  I'll get some more shots later when the sun is out and the decals are complete.

(https://i.postimg.cc/RCJDtYMk/IMG-2823.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/NLYDqp2D)

(https://i.postimg.cc/5yzKMX74/IMG-2824.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/PvtQW5n9)

(https://i.postimg.cc/B6XwMY21/IMG-2825.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/k6Pc5y1n)

(https://i.postimg.cc/JnvYgNQY/IMG-2826.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/N98x2rSR)
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: cb360j on Aug 05, 2019, 16:34:22
Ill say, I wasn't a fan of the length of the seat at first but now I really like this. It turned out great!
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: Odontologist on Aug 05, 2019, 18:30:59
Show room quality. Straight out of the factory floor.
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: sandmanred on Aug 06, 2019, 23:44:49
Thanks for looking and the comments!

I just got the gold decals on today.  There were a few tiny defects in the powder coating on the tank that I decided to hide with some randomly placed checks.  Luckily the graphic was designed with the checks drifting so all I had to do was make a few spares to place over the defects.  Saved having to strip and re-coat tank not knowing if that would even fix it.  It seemed to be from porosity in weld lines that didn't pop until it hit the powder coating oven.

(https://i.postimg.cc/JzpprrvS/IMG-2855.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/QFWQS3Xq)

(https://i.postimg.cc/MTQ5myH8/IMG-2861.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/9RcyWwyx)

(https://i.postimg.cc/2532Vpfy/IMG-2863.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/t1QhMMJG)

(https://i.postimg.cc/N0VbXNg4/IMG-2864.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/1gGphrVn)
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: sandmanred on Aug 15, 2019, 07:39:49
Got new shocks on today.  And a pic of the tank in sun. 

If you have RFY shocks what pressure do you like to run and on what bike?

(https://i.postimg.cc/N0x6q2YW/IMG-2908.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/nsCjqzXk)

(https://i.postimg.cc/SsNWyQxj/IMG-2909.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/2qMqGDvf)
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: JadusMotorcycleParts on Aug 16, 2019, 08:26:35
Stunning!  You're for sure the lucky bastard now to own and ride that!
Title: Re: XS400 cafe build
Post by: sandmanred on Aug 17, 2019, 08:44:11
Stunning!  You're for sure the lucky bastard now to own and ride that!

Thanks looking and the comment!