New to XS member, project bike excited to wrench

Aside from being ungodly grimy, the old stator wire sheathing became incredibly sharp + brittle over time and seems likely to cut into wires. Went to junkyard to salvage anything I could and thinking I'll use this style wire protector as that was really all I could find in an appropriate size, hoping it will stand up to heat and grime under oil pan and around chain:

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Thanks B B S. Ordered replacement sheathing from cycle terminal and seems an OEM equivalent.

Wired back up and plugged in the harnesses again. Now just need to redo drum brakes and fire back up for carb synch. Can someone post a picture of how the underside wiring is routed from the stator? Looks like it goes briefly under the oil pan/crankcase before coming back up behind center stand. Not sure if there's any better way to minimize it on underside of motor...
 
What do you think of my brake shoes? They're sticky so I'm looking to fix that and do any other improvements. I have now sanded out a bunch of the debris and gunk but They are not disengaging freely (stuck open), but the springs look nice and taught at rest... Appreciate any thoughts.

Is it normal for drum brakes to not snap back with the vigor of discs?
 

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Getting back into this and she runs! Oil pump light was wiring cross with neutral switch so no more false alarms. Took her for first 10 min jaunt and did ok. Tachometer not working, think that seal is shot so went by ear and feel. Will address that later

Bike still smoking at stop, initially likely spilled oil burn off. However, continues at end of 10 minute ride. one pipe yellows on header wrap still which smells like gas after I rub on paper towel. Slight yellowing at crossover pipe in exhaust. Plug pics attached any thoughts much appreciated!

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Meant to mention I was running about 200-240 degrees F by the plugs after 10 min ride

300 F @ header pipes at engine connection
400-500 in bend of pipes. *based on infrared, 90F ambient
 
Go on a 50 mile ride with speeds of a least 55-60mph. Then check plugs and temps. A stock bike should get around 265f on a 80* day at the exhaust side of the plug on the head.
 
Do all the stock throttle cables sit loosely in the handlebar? In the picture I'm manually pulling it down, which is easy to do. When it retracts into it's hole, it's solidly in there but can wiggle around. Just something I noticed tinkering and found strange that it doesn't screw into place to remain more secure... My other bike has a push and pull cable locked into place so it doesn't have this freedom.
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What's the best way to hook up a hose to measure fuel height? My carbs only have the drain screw in the bottom, so I suppose I can try and find approximately same size outer diameter hose to push in, but I'm imagining that will hemorrhage gas. Two different size drain screws by the way haha.... Because of course

Tired of having gas spilled every where. Checked floats multiple times and put in new needles, still pissing gas out the air box. Can probably hit it with mallet and get to close, but I'd like for that not to be a regular thing where I go to turn it on and cover my damn bike with gas
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Did you use aftermarket needles? Did you replace the o-rings and seats also? I use only oem mikuni or yamaha float valves and needles. I do use aftermarket o-rings but are ethanol resistant type. I have seen aftermarket needles that don't seat in oem seats at all. They look like the stock ones but are a bit shorter and the clips at the top are a bit different also. The yamaha/mikuni ones are more money but will work and last a very long time. All my bikes are still using the factory ones. I have never bought new ones other than o-rings. If the tips of the needles are still straight and don't show wear they should be good. Also the spring tops needs to move freely.
 
If gas is pouring out and its washing the plugs, It has to be a float sticking or a bad needle. This is why we like to use the fuel shut off every time, its for this reason.

Checked floats for leaks? Blow some air (I use lung power) through the fuel inlet and move the float with the needle and see if it seals. Hang the carbs and see if theres any binding with the needle tang when you move the float. Ive had to work floats with solder and filing to break edges and seal holes. Sometimes the hinge can be ovaled and it needs a light squeeze. I made a float height gauge out of a piece of sheet metal and thats all Ive ever used. Then you might as well clean them once more lol
 
If gas is pouring out and its washing the plugs, It has to be a float sticking or a bad needle. This is why we like to use the fuel shut off every time, its for this reason.
Checked floats for leaks?
Thanks - Agreed. i use fuel shut off as well, but when riding I need it to not dump fuel :) I checked floats and they passed my visual and submersion tests for bubbles.
 
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Did you use aftermarket needles? Did you replace the o-rings and seats also? I use only oem mikuni or yamaha float valves and needles. I do use aftermarket o-rings but are ethanol resistant type. I have seen aftermarket needles that don't seat in oem seats at all. They look like the stock ones but are a bit shorter and the clips at the top are a bit different also. The yamaha/mikuni ones are more money but will work and last a very long time. All my bikes are still using the factory ones. If the tips of the needles are still straight and don't show wear they should be good. Also the spring tops needs to move freely.
I need to check this as I can't recall what I replaced and what I left original now that months went by. I believe i replaced o-rings and the needles, left original seats. Was aftermarket stuff, not OEM so could be suspect. I'm the master at saving 10% to cost myself more in the long run.

Attaching a pic of original needle - still looked straight but the circular damp spot made me think I was best replacing. Perhaps this was incorrect as I'm not sure the stock setup was that bad other than o rings. Might try stock needles again (pictured) with proper adjustments.
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Reviving as I'm having a little more free time with lockdown to try and get this sorted. Also - I sold my other bike in Feb right before stuff got serious... so now in addition to all the chaos I have no motorcycle!!!

Mike - when you say looking rough... you'd replace needle based on its look? Floats seem to serve their purpose, passed submersion test... not sure what else would be concern besides proper tang adjustment?

As mentioned, believe i did replace needle but will confirm. Thanks!
 
I will replace a float needle based on looks yes. If theres any visible ring or indentation around the needle point, it should be replaced. If the spring in the needle compresses at all when you rest the float tang on it, they need to be replaced.
 
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