Ken Fontenot and the crew at Cycle Sports in Houston, Texas, were thinking about putting together a project bike, something to occupy their time this past winter when things were a little slow. Digging around the shop, they looked at the rusty 1975 XS650 rolling chassis that had been sitting outside the shop for about 16 years and figured, why not?
Here’s Ken to tell you the story:
We had a starting point. We tried to use as many parts as possible that we already had around the shop, simply refinishing, replating, repainting and restoring. Well, after about 6 months, this is what we came up with. Its a real conglomeration of parts from many different bikes that we made work.
* Frame is a 1975 Yamaha XS650, gusseted and modified
* Engine & carbs are from a ’77, Both left stock but painted polished & carbs rejetted
* Front suspension & fuel tank ’81, steering stem bearings,seals & progressive springs
* Swingarm ’86 Yamaha Radian with needle bearings
* Kaw ZRX 1200 Shocks, Repainted and re cadium plated
* Foot controls are Kawasaki Ninja 250
* Tailpiece XR750 Harley, seat recontoured , firmer foam inserted and recovered
* Tailpiece is also rubber mounted to the frame on vibration absorbing Iso mounts
* Headlight & Brow from a Harley Sportster, custom mounts made
* K&N Air Filters with custom adapters made to mount to the carbs
* Pipes were built down the street from us by John Easton at Jemco Exhaust Systems
* Stock front caliper and rotor with Grimeca master cylinder & stainless lines
* Brembo Rear caliper with custom water jetted hanger and stabilizer bar, stainless lines
* Stock front brake rotors turned, drilled & painted
* For the wheels we used two stock front Xs650 hubs & Spokes
* Custom built billet sprocket adapter made by James Moody at Leeco Springs
* The Rims are rear Honda CRF450 Excell 19″ take offs donated by Honda of Houston
* Paint scheme graphics were designed by Shane Davis at Graphtec Inc in Houston
* All paint was done here in our shop, the only powdercoated parts are rims and fuel cap
* Trailtech computer for speedo, tach, odometer, tripmeter, clock, temp, shift lights
* Trailtech also has an optional bezel with all the idiot lights needed, rubber mounted
* We custom built the turn signals and license plate & taillight bracket.
* Hard to spot the front signals but they are there
* Custom built the electrical box and wiring harness.
* Hi performance YTZ10s sealed battery, electric start only
This has been a very fun project and of course we ended up spending more time that we expected but we are very proud of the final result. Considering we have spent very little (under $1800) in actual parts & supplies, this bike runs, handles, stops, and rides exceptionally well and really turns heads where ever we park it.
Ken Fontenot, Jeff Wisenbaker & Ben Brooks
I love the look of this bike, very sharp. Even more impressive is the price tag, about $1800 in parts and supplies. Sweet! Nice work Ken!
Check out the Yamaha XS650 motorcycles for sale if you want to try this yourself.