650L motor in 650R possible?

7 replies to this topic
  • BugTeeth

Posted July 24, 2004 - 08:00 AM


I think the perfect bike would be an air cooled 650L motor in the 650R frame. I have a 650 R and worry about crashing in the middle of nowhere and have a radiator, water pump or hose stranding me. Anyone ever done this conversion, is it possible???

  • wickedsprint

Posted July 24, 2004 - 08:58 AM


I don't agree with you because you had the choice to buy a 650L. The problem is people want racebike speeds with reliability that they can take to the 4 corners of the earth...something has to compromise. For the power the 650R makes, or can make with some mods it is some reliability in that it is water cooled. The 650L gives up a modest amount of power for reliability. There is a reason you don't see too many 500 hp landrovers running around the woods...lol That being said, I would rather have the 650R and deal with the radiator..and just don't ride alone..and keep some JB weld with you just in case. Just remember that an uncorked 650R makes as much power as a modded 600R engine..which is essentially the same engine as the 650L, and the same more modded 650R engine can be made to well over 60hp reliably. Sorry I have not see the switch done, but perhaps it can..justcompare the mount dimensions, but does the XR 650l's swingarms go through the back case...i cannot remember..and that is something that they seem to heavily advertise with the 650R That might be your "no". OR, since the bottom ends are similar..see if an aircooled cylinder and top end will fit to a 650R case?

  • JetPilot

Posted July 24, 2004 - 11:17 AM


I think your worry about the radiator is unfounded. The R is a reliable bike. Bottom line is, a million things can happen out there and most of them are not related to water cooling. Switching to an air cooled motor just because you are worried about getting stranded because of the radiator sounds paranoid. Yes you may get stranded, but there are lots of more things likely to strand than water cooling. What you are asking about sounds like a really BAD idea to me...

  • larry650

Posted July 24, 2004 - 12:36 PM


It would make more sense to purchase a used xr600 or 650l and modify it, than the conversion you suggest. I`ve crashed my 650r plenty in the four years I`ve owned it and never bent a radiator. The bike has proven to be way more durable than my body in those crashes so I`d worry alot more about a serious injury than your radiators.

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  • frankstr

Posted July 24, 2004 - 02:00 PM


That kinda swap makes no logic to me omho :thumbsup:....

  • mikekay

Posted July 24, 2004 - 05:21 PM


I dont really follow the logic about radiators and reliablity...you are far more likely to put a large hole in your cases in a crash than put a hole in your radiator.
I've taken out the water pump (but not the radiator!) in a bad crash--managed to ride it out 25-30 miles without any coolent--no issues. So even in a worse case scenario-you take out the radiators alone in the sahara...you can get to a village or goatherders camp or whatever. Many others have ridden the bike a long ways without a working coolent system.
One radiator issue that isnt often addressed is the development of stress cracks on radiators. I've seen 2 of them so far. Both times on the top around the lip where ya put in the coolent. Now i carry a small amount of radiator sealent when i go to Baja. I also carry some radiator hose. I've managed to slice mine a couple times now...there is stainless steel lined radiator hose available--so if you are really really concerned about the radiator issue-well you can buy the super heavy duty IMS Hyflow radiator, put on SS hoses, ride with some sealent and spare hose.
Finally--if you do put a hole in it and manage to patch it with the sealent--you will still have to put some coolent in---- you can always make like a well hydrated desert racer---just dont eat asparagus the night before :thumbsup:
Dont worry about radiators. Theres lots of other stuff that will give you trouble before they do--on the 600, 650R and 650L.

  • smashinz2002

Posted July 24, 2004 - 06:49 PM


And you would want to make such a conversion why????!!! The 650R engine is IT, MAN!!! That motor Makes the 650R!! Why, I mean why ? in the hell would anyone want to put an outdated, slow, and very lame air-cooled engine in it? Doesn't make any sense at all bud!
If you're worried about the radiators, then quit worrying, they are not in the way if you crash! Much more likely you would be stranded by broken bones if you crashed, because I can tell you, the 650R can take a crash and still go! Anyway, it's a Honda, so more than likely, nothing is going to fail on it. If it were a Harley, then yeah, I'd be worried and not trust it.
I guess some people have just not experienced the mighty 650R engine. It is The Motor to have under you!
And to answer the question, no, that mod is not possible, the frames are too different and nothing would fit at all. Go ride an XR600 if you absolutely need air-cooling.

  • mikekay

Posted July 25, 2004 - 07:37 AM


yeah--why not just get an XR600?

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