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Old 10-08-2017, 01:17 PM
tplank's Avatar
tplank tplank is offline
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Tinley Park, IL.
Posts: 25
New Purchase XS1100SF

Well it seems like I've been looking forever but I finally picked up a 1979 XS1100SF off of ebay from a dealer in Wisconsin. I had seen the bike on cycle trader a few months back and on their website. I thought their original asking price($1495) was too high for a non-running bike that needed work so I put it to the side like so many others. Flash forward to a couple weeks ago and the bike is on ebay starting at $500. I tried to grab it but got outbid. I figured no worries there will be others. The seller contacts me a few days later with a second chance offer. I guess the auction didn't work out for whatever reason so I contacted them directly and negotiated a price of $500 which included delivery to my garage!

So now the work begins. It has to be completely gone through.....new tires, carbs cleaned, brakes flushed, fluids/filter changed, general cleanup chrome polishing.... all the usual stuff. Speaking of carbs they are completely frozen with varnish! I pulled them off last night and nothing moves at all..haa. Once I pull them apart and a thorough cleaning I think they should be fine.

The bike really isn't in too bad a shape. The original tool kit is there and the emergency kicker. The side covers are not cracked at all and in good shape. The original seat is nice with one small tear at the bottom side. The tank has some varnish/rust, can't tell which, but I put in some fresh fuel along with some seafoam and I'm letting that sit off to the side to see if that will help clean it up a bit. It has some funky orange striping on the side covers and tank which I don't care for but it looks as though they were done by someone with experience.

There is only a few things missing that I see so far.....the bolt that holds the top of the air box. There's also a breather hose that is attached to a metal bracket just hanging which I don't know where that goes to yet(It's by the battery breather hose). Also the lower half of the air box is missing. The mirrors appear to be aftermarket. The rear grab bar is also missing. The only thing I plan on changing is the handlebars and adding a kickstart lever...I hear the XS850 one works? Once I get it cleaned up this should be a nice driver. Fingers crossed the engine turns over after I put a little Marvel Mystery Oil in the cylinders today and the transmission doesn't have any issues.

If anyone has anyone has any tips or comments or any of the parts I need let me know. Thanks.
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Old 10-08-2017, 02:43 PM
MaximPhil MaximPhil is offline
XS-XJ Super Guru
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Mississauga, ON CANADA
Posts: 4,071
Hi tplank,
There are plenty of Airboxes lying around garages where the owner has chosen to use Pods Ask nicely and there is probably one nearby.

Failing that http://www.xs11.com/forum/showthread.php?t=46767
Andreas regularly posts his list of available parts. Contact by PM or phone.
I would buy the whole thing rather than the missing pieces.
Those carbs would benefit from a good Ultrasonic bath
Good luck with your rebuild.
1981 XS1100 H Venturer ( Addie)
1983 XJ 650 Maxim
2004 Kawasaki Concours. ( Black Bear)
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Old 10-08-2017, 09:30 PM
TopCatGr58's Avatar
TopCatGr58 TopCatGr58 is offline
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Portsmouth, Va.
Posts: 12,621
Hey there,

The little vent hose on the metal tang is supposed to be there, it's the MIDDLE DRIVE vent, it's up there to keep dry so it doesn't suck moisture/water up into it during rain, etc.!

Be aware of NOT soaking the carb bodies in Caustic carb cleaner, will eat the butterfly shaft seals. Hope you've seen/read the Carb cleaning 101 tech tip?

Best to replace the old GLASS Fuse holder with newer ATCO style holder/fuses. Take apart EVERY electrical harness connector, clean and reassemble. Also clean BOTH major ground straps/points, battery and engine at starter straps, as well as the ones on the Reg/Rect/ frame connection. Others recommend making a separate ground wire from there to the battery ground....frame grounds not so good! Aside from this, check out the PickUp Coil repair tech tip, a common problem with the early year models. Also take apart the mech. cent. adv. parts, clean, lube and reinstall, need to mover very easily to work right. Remember, OEM coils/wires are 35 +years old, common for corrosion between cap and wire, as well as the internal resistor and spring/contacts inside the cap.

If jets damaged during disassembly, ONLY get GENUINE MIKUNI replacements, not generic, they are NOT metered the same, and will cause tons of tuning problems. Hopefully the non-running is due to the carbs.

I wouldn't rely on just FLUSHING the brake lines, but actually taking the calipers apart, pistons out, square O-ring out and check for and clean aluminum corrosion out of the O-ring groove, causes pistons to stick and not release, etc.. Also see tech tip about the spooge hole in the master cylinders.
Would also highly suggest replacing the OEM vinyl lines with braided Stainless Steel, greatly improves the feel/performance.

Check the steering head bearings, clean, inspect for notching, if smooth, regrease and reassemble, otherwise replace.

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