yes I know this one is not a Kawasaki either - but there is a huge amount of interest down this way at the moment - in Vinduro events. Old farts riding old dungers on private property tracks that are good fun - lots of grass-tracking, open sweeping dirt tracks and some reasonably easy single-track / creek sections. Every event differs but you get the general picture.........so
......the other bike I have spent a few hours on lately - is an old XL500S that has been up in the top sheds since my good mate Andy moved to the Gold Coast about 12 years ago. It had some gear-selecting issues and also a strange problem with the rear hub. I think the gear-selecting issues have been sorted out though....just a circlip that had been forced out of its groove on the external gear-selector shaft - resulting in about 8mm of freeplay at the splined end (where you bolt the gear lever onto) - this amount of freeplay has meant that in the past, the boys could only select 1st or 2nd - no other gears. I sorted this out yesterday and now the gearbox selects all gears......hopefully this one is fixed and good now.
This bike is a perfect candidate for Vinduro events. Air-cooled, twin-shock and drum brakes. The cut-off year is 1984 (rolling 30-year cutoff) - and the big 500 is a 1980 model.
Many years ago it had some motor work done - a larger 520cc hi-comp Wiseco piston and a Peter Allen exhaust. I have heard it start and it starts pretty easily and sounds very tight. Despite not having been started for over 12 years, I have little doubt that it will be a good runner once the chassis mods are completed....
Years ago when I built the YZ500 - one of the first mods was ditching the drum-brake front end completely and swapping in a WP u/s down front end from a KTM300. That means of course - that the original YZ front end has been sitting around doing SFA since. The stock front end on the XL500 - is skinny forks and a 23" wheel. Nobody got time for dat shit !!! So the obvious change is swapping the YZ front end into the XL. All the triple clamps from both bikes went into the machine shop last Friday with the instructions - sometime within the next week or 2, I will get back a YZ lower clamp, with a replica XL500 centre stem pressed into place that also allows use of the stock YZ top clamp.......and heh-presto...........that YZ front end will bolt straight up to the XL frame. Tapered steering head bearings ordered last week
This means 21" front tyres, a twin-leading shoe front drum - and massive 43mm forks compared to the stock 35's !!! It will still look very period but just much chunkier
Rear shocks need replacing as well as they are OEM and totes fuxxored. Found some good piggy-back shocks from a distributor in Qld for about $170 pair delivered. Yeh they might be Chinese but for my purposes - they will be just fine.
The bike at the moment is just a motor sitting in the frame - once the front-end is back from the machine shop, and the new rear shocks are fitted - I will take a couple of pics. This is not a restoration or ground-up rebuild or anything like that - its simply giving all existing stuff a good tub - replacing the important bits (wheel bearings, brake shoes, cables etc) with new ones - and then going out and giving it a belting at the first Vinduro I can find..............pics to come.