XL500S

ex119x

Been Around the Block
I need to have a bike for riding the backroads around here, Western WI, and around our place in Florida. The roads in FL are all nice low traffic or State or National dirt forest roads. I also need to make some progress on cleaning some of the projects out of the garage. I also have been motivated by the recent threads on Hurco's XL500, the GN400 project and Tanshonomi's spare parts project.
I have had a series of 500 Honda singles projects and bikes over the years as they are my choice for building roadracers. I got rid of my roadrace Ascot and a flat track XL500 a couple of years ago and have the remains of one left that I used for parts and mock up and collecting dust. Here is how it currently sits and the state it has been in for the last 10 years, at least.
It has a titled 1979 XL500S frame, 1984 CB700SC Nighthawk front forks and brakes, 1988 CBR600F wheels and a 1982 FT500 Ascot swingarm. It all needs to be gone through, checked, lubed and tightened before use. When I dragged it out, the rear wheel needs spacers and the rear brake hanger repaired or replaced, the front brakes are dragging and I am still looking for some of the parts which may or may not have been used on other bikes.
Finally, the engine is in pieces and has been for 12-15 years. I know I put the topend on a different motor for the flat track build.
 

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I decided I had better start with the engine to see what I had for parts. I had never had this engine running and had taken it apart to use the head and cylinder on a different bike. I had pulled the topend off about 12 -15 years ago and now needed to locate all the parts. I found a bunch of stuff in my tub labeled XL500 stuff, but was missing the cam, top end bolts, cam sprocket and some dowl pins. I knew I had seen them someplace over the years, but I have moved stuff around and between garages and houses. I finally found them on a shelf so I could begin assembly. The cylinder and piston were .25 over but the ring gaps were way big, .025 -.030". I had a set of .50 overpiston and rings that had been pulled out to be replaced with a 12.5:1 Wiseco and I knew they were almost new. I tried them and the ring gap was within factory spec, so in they went. The only valve cover I have is one off an Ascot. It fits, but a couple of the bolt holes don't line up, so I needed to drill and tap one 6mm hole. The other thing I noticed is that somebody had a gasket glued to the valve cover but there isn't supposed to be one there, just sealant. I have no idea how somebody could have done that as there would have been a ton of clearance on the cam bearing surfaces. It would never have run that way. I wish I could remember where this valve cover came from, but may have been off my other engine which had jumped time and bent valves. I guess I know why. Some people shouldn't be allowed to own tools!!! It is together and I just need to adjust the valves and get it in the frame. Maybe tomorrow.
I included a picture of my Sportster since I had to move it around to get the XL out. It needs a bunch of work before Spring.
 

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that sportster is pretty cool. what class are you racing that in?
 
My FT framed and bodied XR500 supermoto has become my favorite ride. That engine has just enough punch.
 
that sportster is pretty cool. what class are you racing that in?
It fits in V3 with WERA, but it is nowhere near being raceable at this point with suspension issues, oil leaks and poor carburation to start with. I took it to Barber for the Concours a couple of years ago. I rode a couple of slow laps but not the exhibition race.
 
My FT framed and bodied XR500 supermoto has become my favorite ride. That engine has just enough punch.
I have never felt the need for more power for a street ride than a good Honda 500. I will probably even stick with the stock carb and head pipes on this one and a Supertrapp I have laying around. Should be plenty for back roads and forest roads.
 
I got the engine buttoned up and in place in the frame. I am still rounding up all of the engine bolts and mounts. I know I have them around here someplace, as I have seen some of them while I was looking for other stuff. I have been working on the bars as I switched from the superbike bars I had on there to a Pro-Taper I took off of an SV I had.
 

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I have made some more progress. I have an exhaust tacked together and mounted up and I found the engine bolts and spacers so it is bolted in. I am still working on the rear brake set up since the original was a cable operated drum and I am going with hydraulic disc. I am still deciding what carb I want to use. I have the stock 32mm that will bolt right on, a VM38 and a Mikuni 38 flatslide. Both of the mikunis will probably require major jetting changes to work with the stock motor. I guess I better dig them out and start checking jets.

Here is a picture of my grand daughter (just because she is cute), she just turned 7 and is wanting a better bike than her Razor 500. I guess I need to get a gas powered pitbike for her.
 

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