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'81 Budget Build

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by Rusty, Mar 3, 2013.

  1. Rusty

    Rusty XS400 Enthusiast

    First off. Hi, my name is Rusty. I live down in Houston, TX and I'm 24yo.
    I managed to get my hands on a 1981 XS400 from a coworker. The bike had been sitting in a storage unit for years. Shes pretty well intact, just needs some love in all the right places. I havent got in mind exactly the look im going for. But I know %100 it will not be hard tailed. Ive got a '78 XS650 bobber thats also in motion right now. She's my money pit. So I think I'll leave the '81 as a cafe.

    [​IMG]

    Currently Im taking the carbs apart so they can be dipped to remove gunk. I dont know that Im sold on the gas tank yet. Looks cool, but Ive also been informed it has a bit of bondo underneath. I want to search for ways to lighten the bike a bit. Shes stinkin heavy. And I dont dig fat chics.

    Things I know I need right now:

    New wiring harness
    Throttle
    Brake Handle
    Seat
    Petcock valve
    Spark Plugs and cables
    Fuel Line
    Battery(although batteryless would be awesome)


    Just received carb boots, waiting for my XS400 Manual to come in.


    There will be more pics as I start to gain a little ground.
     
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2013
  2. drewpy

    drewpy Excess twin Top Contributor

    welcome to the forum, that paint job looks familliar
     
  3. Rusty

    Rusty XS400 Enthusiast

    Thanks drewpy. That paint job is only on half the tank. The other half is a dark grey. Looks like it was done with rattle cans.
     
  4. ksqrly

    ksqrly XS400 Aficionado

    503
    1
    18
    Utah
    Looks like it has quite a bit of potential. Someone started it in a good direction.
     
  5. Rusty

    Rusty XS400 Enthusiast

    Getting the carbs apart is giving me fits. Will try the last few stripped screws tomorrow. Havent decided whether to buy a carb rebuild kit from MikesXS or try a yamaha dealer.

    Also on the chopping block is my color scheme. Cant decide what colors to do the frame and tank. Decisions, decisions....
     
  6. ksqrly

    ksqrly XS400 Aficionado

    503
    1
    18
    Utah
    I like the flag..just sayin
     
  7. 83xs400

    83xs400 XS400 Enthusiast

    thats a bada$$ beard
     
  8. Rusty

    Rusty XS400 Enthusiast

    Question of the day....

    Make or buy my seat first then determine how large a loop I need for the back?

    or

    Make the loop then figure out what seat to put on?

    I also need to deice whether I want this seat or this one. So many decisions. I'm not creative enough.
     
  9. Rusty

    Rusty XS400 Enthusiast

    Thank you sir. Grew that beard from November to November. My 'yeard' I called it.
     
  10. ksqrly

    ksqrly XS400 Aficionado

    503
    1
    18
    Utah
    I really like that brat seat. the second one. I would wiat until you have your seat, so you know exactly how you have to cut the frame. Its better to have both pieces together before you start fab, but that is just my opinion.
     
  11. 83xs400

    83xs400 XS400 Enthusiast

    id go with the flat one, looks more vinatage in my eyes, but then again im more of a bobber guy
     
  12. Rusty

    Rusty XS400 Enthusiast

    I respect both opinions. I was leaning more towards the flat one. But the price is what gets me. Mofo's arent cheap.

    And I agree that its probably best to get the seat then fab/buy the loop.
     
  13. 83xs400

    83xs400 XS400 Enthusiast

  14. cafenewb

    cafenewb XS400 Addict

    I bought the loop from that guy on Do The Ton for $50 shipped. And it was perfect.
    Then, I built a seat. Seats on Old Bike Barn and DCC were $200 +. I made one that is decent for less. Here's the breakdown on what I spent.
    16 gauge steal for seat pan $6
    vinyl was $4 or so
    thread and misc. things were $4
    batting for the ribs was $6
    rivets were $6.
    sleeping pad from walmart for seat foam - $15 (but you can get 2 or 3 seats worth of foam)

    So, for less than $40 it turned out pretty well. if I had spent a little more time/planning making it perfect, I think it could be comparable to the ones on DCC.
    [​IMG]
     
  15. sayosen

    sayosen XS400 Addict

    Hey Rusty - first, welcome to the forum! As for that Dime City seat, check out Jtorres on the forum. He used it and posted some pics so you can see what it looks like on an XS400. We exchanged a few messages as I was looking at the same seat. He wasnt too impressed with the comfort factor.

    (http://www.xs400.com/forum/member.php?u=6666)

    As for the loop, I was in the same situation as you. I couldn't find a prefab one in the 7/8" pipe I was looking for so I picked up a second-hand Hines bender and have some pipe ordered as I couldnt find any locally. While waiting, I tried it on 3/4" and 1" pipes and I'm pretty pleased. If I can help you out, let me know.
     
  16. Rusty

    Rusty XS400 Enthusiast

    That guy did a awesome job building his loop. I have a torch at the house, might spare me from using the grill. I will more than likely mimic his jig to make mine.

    Comfort factor is something I'm in need of(this coming from a guy with no ass). Sitting on the floor for 10 minutes makes my tailbone hurt. Maybe I need to look in to making my own as was suggested. Buy a pan or make one and get it all stitched up.
     
  17. Rusty

    Rusty XS400 Enthusiast

    Rookie question....

    I have drum brakes on front and back. Is there a master cylinder for both? Like reservoir and all?

    Im trying to get my handle bar situation figured out. But Im not sure what needs a master cylinder i.e. the clutch and or both brakes??

    My terminology sucks.
     
  18. sayosen

    sayosen XS400 Addict

    The drum brakes, both front & rear, along with the clutch, should be operated by cables. Disc brakes use master cylinders. There may be some hydraulic operated clutches out there but I am not familiar with them.

    As for the seat - I would advise making your own pan and foam, then having a pro stitch it. I say this having made a few seats which ranged from passable to "what the heck what you were thinking...".
     
  19. Rusty

    Rusty XS400 Enthusiast

    Getting really stoked where this 400 is headed. Some times you just gotta give things a few days, and tie up some loose ends for your thoughts to all come together.

    I've decided that the frame will be painted this color.
    The engine, forks, rims, drums and tank I will leave a natural metal color.
    The seat and anything on the bars will be black.

    I think I will just order clear fuel lines.

    That's what I've got in my head. I suspect things will change as I progress. That's life.
    I'd like to set a goal to get the bike frame to paint next week.
     
  20. ksqrly

    ksqrly XS400 Aficionado

    503
    1
    18
    Utah
    I like those Ideas. What are you going to coat the tank with?
     

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