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  #1  
Old 10-06-2011, 02:29 AM
TheDudester TheDudester is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Show Low, AZ
Posts: 9
over my head. . . wayyy over

Well first off i like to thank whoever runs the site, mucho amazing.

secondly, i wold like to say i am a teenager that was always told as long as i lived under my moms roof i couldn't own a motorcycle, so naturally once i moved out i hit up Craigslist. well i always liked 70's era bikes and i picked up a 79 XS eleven that ran but was ugly as sin for 5 ben-jammins.

i guess my first mistake was assuming bikes were the same as the cars i slaved away on in high school. because now i am stuck with an old bike that i know nothing about. i do know my way around an engine but past that i am lost. where can i get performance parts and/or custom visual upgrades?!

as far as i know its all stock and i kinda dig it but i want a head turner. . . i mean I'm in college now

the bottom line is i have no idea what I'm even planning on this bike and how to get there so any suggestions are welcome. but i have a limited income, like minimum wage with less than 20 hours a week limited.
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  #2  
Old 10-06-2011, 07:23 AM
natemoen's Avatar
natemoen natemoen is offline
Master of XSology
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Fargo
Posts: 8,617
Welcome! I beg you to take the MSF basic riders course, and don't think you are badass cause you don't wear gear, get some and use it, especially a good helmet at least a 3/4 face one. Both WILL save your life eventually!

Now as to performance and visual upgrades, they don't exist. Aftermarket for these bikes is.basically nonexistent. You really do not need any performance upgrades because they are already pretty scary fast when you get them dialed in. One upgrade I guess would be some.sort of fork brace, a guy named Tkat has a nice one for I think $100. Visually, it will all be you custom fabing stuff to get what you want.

Let's see some pics!
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KD9ARL

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1978 XS1100E
K&N Filter
#45 pilot Jet, #137.5 Main Jet
OEM Exhaust
ATK Fork Brace
LED Dash lights
Ammeter, Oil Pressure, Oil Temp, and Volt Meters

Green Monster Coils
SS Brake Lines
Vision 550 Auto Tensioner

In any moment of decision the best thing you can do is the right thing, the next best thing is the wrong thing, and the worst thing you can do is nothing.

Theodore Roosevelt
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  #3  
Old 10-06-2011, 09:05 AM
CatatonicBug's Avatar
CatatonicBug CatatonicBug is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Clinton, UT
Posts: 6,117
I second the MSF course! HUGE benefit to you and those who kinda like you.

If you want to buy stuff for your bike, put your money into tools. Things like a carb synch (and colortune if you want to go that route) will really come in handy for making it run right. For visual upgrades, polish the heck out of the aluminum, and it will become just as stunning as any chromed-out modern bike. Get it running WELL in stock condition before you decide to change anything. These bikes were incredibly well-engineered from the factory, and you'll save yourself a lot of frustration trying to modify things that might not need to be modified.
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1980 XS850SG - Sold
1981 XS1100LH Midnight Special (Sold) - purchased 9/29/08
Fully Vetterized and Dynojet Kit added, Heated Grips, Truck-Lite LED headlight, Accel Coils, Irridium plugs, TKAT Fork Brace, XS850LH Final Drive & Black SS Brake lines from Chacal.
Here's my web page devoted to my bike! XS/XJ User's Manuals there, and the XJ1100 Service Manual and both XS1100 Service manuals (free download!).

Whether you think you can, or you think you cannot - You're right.
-H. Ford
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  #4  
Old 10-06-2011, 09:49 AM
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tcoop tcoop is offline
XSive Maximus
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: South Weber, UT
Posts: 792
As everyone else has said take the MSF riding course. The first thing you need to get is a manual. These bikes are easy to work on. My son does all his own work on his (he's 17).

+1 on getting the gear. Monday my son was riding to school (it was raining) the light turned red and he had to stop quickly. The front tire hit some gravel (that he didn't see) and ended up laying it down in the intersection. He had all his gear on so he was able to get up lift the bike and push it off to the side of the road before any of the gawking cagers could get out of their cars. He walked away without getting a scratch. Now he gets to fix the turn signals and and mirror on the left side.
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Ty

78 XS1100E - Now in Minnesota
80 XS1100LG - The Punisher
82 XJ1100 - Current project - The Twins
82 XJ1100 - Wife's Bike - The Twins
82 XJ1100 - Daughter's Bike
72 Suzuki TS125 - Daughter's Bike
72 Yamaha Mini JT2 - Youngest Daughter's bike (She wants a bigger one now)
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  #5  
Old 10-06-2011, 09:54 AM
Flyman32's Avatar
Flyman32 Flyman32 is offline
XSive
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Walla Walla, Washington
Posts: 14
Watch out!

Wow! My first bike was a 250 BSA. My parents wouldn't let me own one either. My Dad called them MurderCycles! Anyway, you've got a lot of performance under your butt. Be very careful. NEVER get on that thing with booze in your gut. It doesn't end well.

I bought '81 XS1100H that was sitting outside for almost a year and wouldn't start. It still appealed to me. I put in battery, paid $80 to shop to check it out and synch carbs and it ran like a top. Still working on making it nice looking and little stuff. Shined up exhaust (water and baking soda to clean), new windshield coming, ordering TKAT... one step at a time and it's not a budget buster.

For the really ugly parts I paint over them with Rust-Oleum Protective Enamel using a brush and stipple method. (tapping the surface) The results are amazing and I've had many compliments on my side covers which I repaired when broken and were uber ugly before. Cheap and easy for now. I know some will balk at this, but as long as it looks better and not worse, whatever.

Polish aluminum is good idea and I'm looking to get to that.


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1981 XS1100H Venturer
Walla Walla, Wa
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  #6  
Old 10-06-2011, 11:23 AM
'OlGuiltyBoy 'OlGuiltyBoy is offline
Truly XSive
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Manassas, Va.
Posts: 174
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheDudester View Post
Well first off i like to thank whoever runs the site, mucho amazing.

secondly, i wold like to say i am a teenager that was always told as long as i lived under my moms roof i couldn't own a motorcycle, so naturally once i moved out i hit up Craigslist. well i always liked 70's era bikes and i picked up a 79 XS eleven that ran but was ugly as sin for 5 ben-jammins.

i guess my first mistake was assuming bikes were the same as the cars i slaved away on in high school. because now i am stuck with an old bike that i know nothing about. i do know my way around an engine but past that i am lost. where can i get performance parts and/or custom visual upgrades?!

as far as i know its all stock and i kinda dig it but i want a head turner. . . i mean I'm in college now

the bottom line is i have no idea what I'm even planning on this bike and how to get there so any suggestions are welcome. but i have a limited income, like minimum wage with less than 20 hours a week limited.
I think only one person here really answered your question!! Good grief ...
So you say you want a headturner, you have start off by knowing what style you are after ie: bobber or chopper. A lot of the folks on this site automatically think that you want and should return these bikes to stock form - that will NOT give you a head tuner. So as you can see, I'm not one of 'em! That search function up at the top is your best best ... I'm more of a sport/crotch rocket and bobber type guy. So I'm going with a hayabusa front end conversion on mine, as well as a rear chain conversion (I hate shaft driven bikes and that skinny rear wheel). There's going to be a little modification of course but things can be done without you being a rocket scientist. Just search and read through a few threads and eventually you'll find some useful info jumping around here and there. I found that using the advanced search will better point you in the right direction with different things. I will say dont forget to get yourself a Clymer manual, that will be your best friend. I wouldnt even start tinkering with that bike until you read through a bit of the manual or even just get it in the mail. And as he already said, get yourself some tools for tuning and a simple mc tool kit. Good luck with that thing - and dont get discouraged. You have a nice machine that nobody really knows about simply because its shaft driven, but you can make it stand out from the rest.
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Guilty Ones M.C.
Manassas, Va.

1980 Standard G
2001 CBR 929RR
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  #7  
Old 10-06-2011, 12:18 PM
crazy steve crazy steve is offline
XS-XJ Guru MODERATOR
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Beautiful outer Yelm, WA
Posts: 7,932
Well, first off, if you have a running bike you're starting at a higher level than many have.

Ultra-low budget? That will dictate much of what you do, depending on what you have available in the way of work space/tools. Planning on riding it while you work on it, or tearing it down for mods/repairs? Again, this will control much of what you do...

Want to 'stand out'? You don't have to chop one up to do that; remember, these are 30-year-old machines and the chances of meeting yourself are pretty slim. Here's one I did, and it was/is a head-turner.... http://www.xs11.com/forum/showthread.php?t=33841 ... if you have a square-themed 'standard' with it's iconic styling, those are even less-seen in decent OEM shape. As was mentioned, there's pretty much zero aftermarket support in terms of 'custom' parts for these, so most mods will be hand-built/adapted by you.

If your auto-mechanic skills are decent, there's no reason you can't figure one of these out. If you go to CatatonicBug's home page (third post in this thread under his signature), you can download a factory service manual and get familar with the bikes' parts.

Make sure it's mechanically sound before you start changing it; chasing problems is the main reason these bikes get sold as 'projects'. Checking the motor for condition (compression test, valve adjustment), cleaning/rebuilding the carbs, brakes, and forks, and making sure the electrical system is working correctly are all thing that can be done on a 'budget' (you should be able to do all this for about $100 if there's no major parts damage/wear) will give you a properly-functioning bike at which point you can address any cosmetic issues, and much of that will simply be elbow-grease...

Anyway, ask lots of questions if need be, and post some pics; we like pics! Welcome, and good luck!
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Fast, Cheap, Reliable... Pick any two

'78E original owner - resto project
'78E ???? owner - Modder project FJ forks, 4-piston calipers F/R, 160/80-16 rear tire
'82 XJ rebuild project
'80SG restified, red SOLD
'79F parts...
'81H more parts...

Other current bikes:
'93 XL1200 Anniversary Sportster 85RWHP
'86 XL883/1200 Chopper
'82 XL1000 w/1450cc Buell, Baker 6-speed, in-progress project
Cage: '13 Mustang GT/CS with a few 'custom' touches
Yep, can't leave nuthin' alone...
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  #8  
Old 10-06-2011, 04:29 PM
TheDudester TheDudester is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Show Low, AZ
Posts: 9
thanks for all the help and pointers it is almost overwhelming.

i have already taken all the courses and gotten the gear. . . all my uncles on both sides of the family have bikes and i rode with them alot. . . i had my bike permit before i had my drivers license. i own and use all the safety equipment. . . after scrubbing your older brothers road rashed back for hours to keep it from getting infected you almost have no choice but to get a durable jacket. which is also the reason i could never own a bike. . . after my brother totaled his Kawasaki 750 and spent a couple days in the hospital for a concussion and road rash on 45% of his body my mom went ballistic. . . it was a couple years before she even let me ride with my uncles again.

i guess 'ol guilty boy is right about my style. . .i love cruisers like a sportster or V star. i don't like bobbers or choppers though. i think they look trashy and patched together like a rat rod. . . i know that comment might upset some people and i respect peoples right to express themselves how they want all i'm saying is that just isn't my scene.

i will get pictures up a soon as possible. . . my 10 mil has a cracked lens after a drunkard almost pushed me down the bleachers at a rodeo about 3 weeks ago and i haven't found a replacement yet
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  #9  
Old 10-06-2011, 07:41 PM
madmax-im's Avatar
madmax-im madmax-im is offline
Master of XSology
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Southern Comfort...Wendell NC
Posts: 6,607
Welcome to the site...Its interesting to note that when these bikes first appeared on our shores back in 1978...They were the first litre plus bikes to be labled Muscle Bikes or Superbikes...At 95 hp from the factory and sub 12 sec 1/4 milers all day long made this a genuine performance champ and totally wiped the competiton...if you get your bike's stock output I think you'll find it has more than enough performace to suit your needs. BTW there are engine peformance upgrades but they are expensive for the hp gain which is minimal...1179 and a 1200 cc big bore kit...
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1980 XS650G Special-Two
Don't speak unless you can improve upon the silence....

Last edited by madmax-im; 10-06-2011 at 07:45 PM.
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  #10  
Old 10-06-2011, 10:24 PM
yamahansolo's Avatar
yamahansolo yamahansolo is offline
XS-XJ Guru
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: jawga
Posts: 1,104
I present to you a bad ass custom 79 standard with afteemarket parts made for this bike... read my sig. For info... I have out ran many 600 CC bikes up to 100 MPH. But slow down there and make sure they see you hit your brakes... cause if nit they will dust your ass over 100! Oh wait.... scratch that. Take the msf course and keep it under 55 until your about 25 yrs old... if I had this bike at 19 I'd be dead now






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" She'll make point five past lightspeed. She may not look like much, but she's got it where it counts, kid. I've made a lot of special modifications myself. "

79 xs11 standard
xs pods, Kerker 4-1, zrx1200r carbs mikesxs coils 35k voltz of power!!!
8mm msd wires
tkat fork brace...
Fox shocks...
mikes650 front fender
led's gallore...
renthal bars
gold valve emulators
vmax tensioner
Rifle fairing
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  #11  
Old 10-07-2011, 12:40 AM
yamahansolo's Avatar
yamahansolo yamahansolo is offline
XS-XJ Guru
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: jawga
Posts: 1,104
With great (horse) power comes great responsibility!
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" She'll make point five past lightspeed. She may not look like much, but she's got it where it counts, kid. I've made a lot of special modifications myself. "

79 xs11 standard
xs pods, Kerker 4-1, zrx1200r carbs mikesxs coils 35k voltz of power!!!
8mm msd wires
tkat fork brace...
Fox shocks...
mikes650 front fender
led's gallore...
renthal bars
gold valve emulators
vmax tensioner
Rifle fairing
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  #12  
Old 10-07-2011, 08:07 AM
mack mack is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 2,400
turning heads

I've yet to go anywhere and not draw a crowd. The younger riders come up and ask "what is that?" and the older people usually say, "I remember thoughs, they were fast, or I used to have one, should have never sold it!"
In my opinion, they don't need to be tricked up, just cleaned up and you'll turn lots of heads. As for being a chick magnet, it will be different from the rest, they do seem to gravitate to that.

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mack
79 XS 1100 SF Special
HERMES
original owner
http://i946.photobucket.com/albums/a...ps6932d5df.jpg

81 XS 1100 LH MNS
SPICA
http://i946.photobucket.com/albums/ad305/mack-055/2.jpg

78 XS 11E
IOTA
https://youtu.be/wB5Jfbp6SUc
https://youtu.be/RaI3WYHSuWA



Have recovery trailer and shop if you breakdown in my area.
Frankford, Ont, Canada
613-398-6186
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  #13  
Old 10-07-2011, 08:27 AM
natemoen's Avatar
natemoen natemoen is offline
Master of XSology
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Fargo
Posts: 8,617
Quote:
Originally Posted by mack View Post
I've yet to go anywhere and not draw a crowd. The younger riders come up and ask "what is that?" and the older people usually say, "I remember thoughs, they were fast, or I used to have one, should have never sold it!"
In my opinion, they don't need to be tricked up, just cleaned up and you'll turn lots of heads. As for being a chick magnet, it will be different from the rest, they do seem to gravitate to that.

+1 on that Mack, I get the same reactions whenever people see mine or I talk about it.
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KD9ARL

μολὼν λαβέ

1978 XS1100E
K&N Filter
#45 pilot Jet, #137.5 Main Jet
OEM Exhaust
ATK Fork Brace
LED Dash lights
Ammeter, Oil Pressure, Oil Temp, and Volt Meters

Green Monster Coils
SS Brake Lines
Vision 550 Auto Tensioner

In any moment of decision the best thing you can do is the right thing, the next best thing is the wrong thing, and the worst thing you can do is nothing.

Theodore Roosevelt
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  #14  
Old 10-07-2011, 10:10 AM
fredintoon's Avatar
fredintoon fredintoon is offline
Master of XSology
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Saskatoon SK
Posts: 6,795
Hi Chris and welcome,
first thing to save for is a new front tire. Then a Tkat fork brace.
Remember that it's a top-heavy monster that'll go way over 100mph but runs out of brakes and steering above 80.
Don't even think about a paint job until everything mechanical is at 100%.
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XS11SG with Spirit of America sidecar
"The Flying Pumpkin"
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  #15  
Old 10-07-2011, 11:59 AM
Toolmaker Tim Toolmaker Tim is offline
XSive Maximus
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: South Bend, Indiana
Posts: 671
Ideas

If you are looking for ideas on different ways of customizing your bikes appearance, look at the pictures on the Bike Photos thread in this forum. There are alot of different ways to spice these bikes up. There are a lot of guys on this site that want these bikes kept strictly stock, and others that have no problem taking the saw to the frame. It's your bike, do what you want to do. Be warned that some of the ideas like extended forks, lowering and other mods can make the steering geometry unsafe. Stock seems to be the best configuration, especially for someone new to the bikes. Ask lots of questions, there are some real experts here and my bike wouldn't be running if not for the help and advice I have gotten here. Get it running, then start looking for add ons. Braided stainless steel brakelines, K&N air filters, Tkat fork brace, and TopCat's spin on oil filter adapter and fuse box seem to be some of the more common changes guys do. Good luck and have fun.
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1979XS1100SF
K&N's and drilled airbox
Jardine 4in1
Dunlop Elite 3's
JBM slide diaphragms
142.5 main jets
45 pilot jets
T.C.'s fusebox & SOFA
750/850 FD mod.
XV 920 Needle Mod.
Mike's XS plastic floats set at 26mm
Venture Cam Chain Tensioner
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