Help With New Purchase.. Engine Problems & My Introduction

4 replies to this topic
  • Kawabuggy

Posted February 11, 2007 - 06:26 PM


Yesterday I purchased a 93 XR600R for $800.00. I know the bike needs work, but I bought it anyway with the hopes that I can fix it and enjoy it.

Let me start at the beginning. I owned a 1983 Yamaha TT600 from 2001 until 2004. I reluctantly sold that bike due to family commitments, and the love of life combined with the desire to keep my body in it's current unbroken condition. I say these things because I LOVED that bike. It started EVERY TIME, on the 1st or 2nd kick-even after sitting for months. If you are not familiar with this bike, it has the compression release built into the kick-start so you simply choke it when cold, pull out the kick-starter and then let the weight of your leg collapse on it and it starts right up! No hard kicking.. No cursing. Just pure and simple. That bike served me flawlessly for all the years I owned it. It never once left me stranded ANYWHERE. Never once did I have to push it out of the woods. I drove this bike miles and miles out into the wilderness without so much as a cell phone, wallet, or any concern that I would get back home. That is how high my confidence was in that bike. Now, the downside.... The bike had only drum brakes front and rear. After installing new pads front & rear, and replacing every part relative to the brake system, it was SCARY in an emergency/panic stop situation. I learned I stood a better chance of jumping off the bike if I were faced with running into something. The bike just would not stop well. For the power it produced it simply was not safe. I let several people ride it, and they all said the same thing "sooner or later that bike is going to kill you". So, I sold it. But I regretted not having anything to ride off-road.

Fast forward to late '06. I got the itch to get back to nature, with a gas-powered engine screaming between my legs, behind me, beside me, or otherwise somewhere within my immediate vicinity. This time though I wanted full protection in case of accident, roll-over, or anything else mother nature might throw at me short of a tsunami. I started working on a ZX-6R powered off road buggy. For those less initiated, a ZX-6R is a Kawasaki Ninja 600 CC street bike. I got the complete bike in wrecked form for $600. With the bike came the dyno-sheet showing 136 rear wheel horsepower, and a brown bag full of receipts for the speed parts, jet kit, piston kit, and every other purchase ever made for the bike. I am still working on that project, but it has spawned several other projects that are further delaying my ability to ride this thing in the woods. In case you are wondering about my screen name-this is where it came from. I estimate I have at least another 6 months left on the build before fruition..

In the interim, I have been checking e-bay, craigslist, and anywhere else I could think of for a dirt bike.. I was visiting my wifes parents this weekend in Baton Rouge and was browsing the classifieds when I came across the XR600R. I went and looked at it and bought it. Now this is where the problems start.. The bike will start and run, but starting it is probably similar to what it must have been like to start the first model A Fords with a wooden hand-crank.. It is an arduous process. Once it starts, it blows blue smoke clouds that kill all flying insects within a mile.. Once it warms up, it seems to run ok. It sometimes misfires, and stalls frequently. I noticed that the over-flow tube for the carb starts dripping after running for a few minutes. I also noticed that once the blue smoke stops, you can see black smoke puffs when you rev it. I believe the carb is running rich due to a stuck/sticking float or damaged fuel control needle or seat. I also believe the valve guide seals are worn and are allowing oil into the cylinder. So, once I get the bike back here.. Where would you recommend I start to troubleshoot this thing?

From what I have read so far, this seems like a really great site.
Thanks in advance for your time and consideration!

  • rebelventurer

Posted February 11, 2007 - 06:38 PM


Welcome to TT. Yep sounds like it needs a good going over. Carb cleaning, pull the head probably needs a valve job, new springs and seals at least. You can find a lot of parts at Good luck, let us know how it comes out! Oh, had one the old TT600's but no auto decomp. and it was a bear to start, but once it was going you were good till it cooled down again and yep, lousy brakes.

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  • tomb1957

Posted February 11, 2007 - 08:34 PM


Welcome to TT. There is a wealth of information here. Check your air box for oil, a sure sign of excessive top end wear and give your carb a good cleaning. Clean the main and pilot jets. Also do a compression and leakdown test if you can.

  • cleonard

Posted February 11, 2007 - 10:18 PM


Check the valve clearance. When it gets to zero then it becomes really hard to start. When everything is right a XR600 starts pretty reliably.

It really sounds like it could use some work though. The head is usually the first thing to go on these bikes. Xr's only does excellent machine work. I had head issues and after two tries with others, they fixed it right. The smoke at startup is almost for sure valve seals. However, there may be more problems than just that.

  • frankstr

Posted February 12, 2007 - 06:53 AM


Welcome to Thumpertalk, Kawabuggy.:censored:
You'll get some answers here, a great bunch of guys, :ride: :lol:

:applause: :applause:

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