New guy building XS400 Softail Bobbers

Paint looks great but thought the clear needed to go on before the paint hardens ? wondering as you said you were sanding the color then clear it.

I am no pro and have used the 2K clear love it.......... but have always let the paint flash for a little then cleared it then sanded......... last one I did was blackj and had some dust in it but it came out with the buffer....... surprised myself on that one it looked great.......

Yeah I hear what you're saying. I had to let the paint sit a couple of days to sand with 2000 grit to get rid of dust nibs and some texture before applying the clear coat. Time will tell on longevity. If I have to redo it no big deal, it's less than a $50 base coat and clear coat material cost.
I am convinced that being in the Midwest is a +5 modifier to dad jokes.
LOL, I was thinking about you today JP.
Not only did I make my rear brake assembly pretty, and also made it mechanically sound with new shoes and cleaned and lubricated brake cam.

Made it out to the shop today for a bit. I knocked off a small project that was bothering me, the exhaust system.

This '80 build has the welded on mufflers and cross pipe. I've read the posts about not cutting the OEM mufflers off.
I don't like to 'butcher' things but some PO did. You can see in the following 2 pics some PO cut the aft end of the mufflers off just past the cross pipe and welded on a piece of 2 1/2" exhaust pipe cutting an angled tailpipe. They also welded in a baffle with ~7/8" hole in it. The PO worked very hard at doing a very fugly job of this.

Good example of a fugly job........


So I said to myself "self, if man built it, man can fix it". I want to keep the upper and lower weep holes in the pipes functional.

Upper weep hole.

Lower weep hole.

So I cut the mufflers off....................................................

After measuring and scratching I found that I have to weld a piece of exhaust pipe1 1/4" long to make the pipe the same length as the '78 pipes. I also took the time to cut and form the inner exhaust pipe so that it will defuse the exhaust gases.

The end result is attaching the aftermarket muffler to the pipes same as the '78 build while keeping the weep holes functional even though the pipes will be wrapped. I am confident the wrap will allow moisture to escape from the weep holes.
Sad to see what the po did to what I think is the best exhaust setup for overall performance with these bikes. It's good your able to do something with them at least.
Sad to see what the po did to what I think is the best exhaust setup for overall performance with these bikes. It's good your able to do something with them at least.
Yes it is sad, but I believe the exhaust will turn out ok.

Over the last couple days I cut pieces off and welded pieces that were needed on the frame just like the '78 build. Then I degreased and depainted the frame.

Installed nutserts for the battery box.

Set up depainted frame for primer.

Black primer applied.

Couple of pics of final paint (3 coats).

Went out to the shop for a bit today. Got a couple of small jobs done on the bike.
First was attaching the lower mounts for the rear fender.


Then completed fabrication of the fender stays.



Then I installed the All Balls cone bearings in the steering column.


Then I did the obligatory mock up........that gave me the chance to introduce myself to the bike and see what kind of personality it has.....
I think we'll get along just fine

Went out to the shop this afternoon, scratched a bit, then scratched some more.
Then decided to finish up the engine O/H.
Pulled out the Sioux seat grinding outfit and touched up the seats (the valves were ground over a month ago).

Then I lapped the valves, installed new seals and assembled, couple pics

At the rate you are going, you might be able to get both bikes out for a tandem ride before the snow and ice put a lock on the season! It is going to be hard to tell these bikes apart.
Out to the shop for a bit today. Installed pistons with new rings and circlips, then the cylinders, and cylinder head cover - torqued all to spec. Installed all new gaskets and seals as required. Set valve clearance. Cleaned sump filter screen and installed new oil filter. All in all a good day.
2 - 3 pics


Out to the shop again today.
Put some engine paint on the 400. It's at the point where it's pretty well ready to install onto the frame.


Then I scratched a bit, then turned my attention to the instrument cluster. Broke it all down to glass bead, buff, test, paint, install LED bulbs, yada, yada, yada.
So I find that some PO, in their infinite wisdom, decided to completely remove the signal light indicator bulb, socket, and wiring:doh:

Actually the complete wiring harness has been hacked up, oh well, just a bit more wiring work no big deal.

So I happen to have some mini LED lights.

Took a couple of them, cut a piece of rubber tubing the same size as the BA9 light sockets and inserted the bulbs.

Then inserted this into the socket cord assembly, should work if's it hooked up right:cheers:
Hey guys, reaching out to the knowledge base here. I'm going through the hacked up harness on the 1980 and for the life of me I can't find this diode in the wiring. It is placed between the headlight relay and the alt/rectifier.
Anyone familiar with this? What's it's purpose?
The 1978 didn't have this diode.

EDIT: I found my answer by searching diode, I don't need it as I am putting my headlight on a on/off switch like the '78.