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Honda xl500r 1983 £2650
Style:
Scrambler
Make:
HONDA
Model:
Xl
No. Cylinders:
Single
Build type:
Semi-Pro
Engine size:
500cc
Year:
1983
Location:
Tetbury GL8, UK
Days listed:
8 days

Tell us about your bike

 

I first bought this bike about 12 years ago from a dealer in Scotland who’d taken it in part-exchange. It was originally registered in Italy and imported to the UK in 1990. It is on a ‘Y’ plate, accurately reflecting year of manufacture. I have the V5 of course. Honda XLs were head to head with the iconic (lower)Yamaha XT500 and are arguably a better ride.   After a couple of years I sold it to an acquaintance to buy a modern road bike and despite owning other bikes I missed it.   After some pestering I bought it back, and decided to rebuild it. 

  • Stripped it to the frame, organised a bare metal powder coat respray to grey.
  • Engine blasted back to bare metal and I had a top end rebuild from Dave Marler, ex Honda mechanic in the Midlands.
  • I cut down the foam in the seat and had it recovered in stitched black leather in Mumbai when on holiday in India (yes I carried it around the whole trip).
  • New chain and sprockets 
  • Custom made piece of chequer plate, with rubber piping, to fit under the rear end of the seat. Tidies the look up.
  • The custom stainless steel exhaust was fitted in Scotland before I bought it, I just part wrapped it and polished it up (it is significantly lighter than stock).
  • Custom made exhaust holder bracket 
  • Replaced head lamp, indicators and mudguards.
  • Sanded down the tank to bare metal and had it lacquered. 
  • Fitted a fuel filter. 
  • Original rims and clocks. 
  • Bought the ‘7’ brushed aluminium numbers online from Italy, a bit showy perhaps but I like them, they’re bolted to custom brackets.
  • New Kenda trail tyres this month (chosen because also good on the road)
  • New battery last year 
  • New MoT earlier this month (no issues raised). In 2 years it will MoT exempt (currently 38 years old).
  • Subsequent to the rebuild I had the electrics changed to 12v and fitted bullet indicators.
  • Further work was done by Two Wheels Only (Shepherds Bush) to overbore it which tightened the compression.
  • If so inclined you could buy the original bits off eBay and recreate a stock bike.

  Good points   

  • Rebuilt engine, sweet runner, it starts on first or second kick, and pulls well
  • Usable air cooled classic and pretty much a unique look 
  • 12 months MoT
  • Performs well, plush ride
  • Happy with off-roading , I wanted a useable bike not a garage queen 
  • It is not immaculate but it doesn’t need anything doing to it; it’s a working bike

  Points to consider   

  • it’s kick start and drum brakes. I made a video showing the knack to start it.
  • Speedo is in KM/h 
  • It’s a tall bike, I’m 6’ and it’s perfect for me 
  • There is a tiny oil weep, always has been. Google it as it’s a common issue. Doesn’t bother me as it keeps everything lubed..
  • Exhaust flanges reseated and now Allen key for ease of checking/tightening 
  • Much of the work done was for cash and I don’t have pics of the engine apart or similar, but you can hear the engine run and if you can prove insurance and give me your passport I might let you ride it
  • I expect someone to view before buying; I can send vids of it running if you want

  I have done some trail riding on her recently and will be doing more. I’d rather do that nowadays than road ride. I’ve been out twice and she’s performed well alongside hard core KTMs, riding on the pegs up rocky trails and through woods, but I’m getting on and I want something modern, light and smaller capacity - this is a physically a big beast and although I wanted to use it normally, inevitably it will be bashed around off-road and that’s a shame (I lost an indicator first time out). I don’t want to run two bikes so time to sell her to someone who’ll appreciate her.

SELLER DETAILS
Seller name:
Jer...
Tel:
077...
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