Spare parts you would take for a XR650 cooling system

Hi,

I've had several XR600s that I've taken on some big desert trips in Egypt

(500 plus km off-road without support) and now have a XR650, my first water cooled bike. I know what spares I had to take for my XR600 but what is going to break or go bad on the cooling system for my 650 that might leave me stuck in the middle of nowhere to shrivel up and die?

Thanks, Steve

http://egge.us/etc/etc.htm (lots of desert pics from Egypt, UAE and Oman)

I'd say at the max, hoses and a cap. Other than that you should be fine.

One of the big drawbacks with a water cooled bike is the radiators. One good hit and it needs to be replaced. Not like it happens all the time, but it's always a possibility. One of my friends bought a 97 KYM 620 LC4 new and he still has his original radiators. They have been straightened several times but they still work. Another Friend got a new 05 WR450 and had to replace one after his first ride.

I don't know the specifics, but it may be possible to bypass one of the two radiators in the case it gets too damaged. That would take some correct sized rubber hoses, and perhaps a fitting or two. Something to test before the ride. It may also be possible to fix cracks/holes with some 5 minute epoxy putty.

Hi,

I've had several XR600s that I've taken on some big desert trips in Egypt

(500 plus km off-road without support) and now have a XR650, my first water cooled bike. I know what spares I had to take for my XR600 but what is going to break or go bad on the cooling system for my 650 that might leave me stuck in the middle of nowhere to shrivel up and die?

Thanks, Steve

http://egge.us/etc/etc.htm (lots of desert pics from Egypt, UAE and Oman)

Rad stop leak, and enough hose/clamps to bypass one of the rads if you have too. I'd also take a close look at the setup so you know exactly what you need to do a bypass. Also, don't forget, if you do have to do a bypass, don't idle along all slow, you will overheat. Stay in the lower rpm range, but keep yourself moving at least 20 or 30 mph to keep air moving through that rad. Often times, in an emergency, you can pinch off the damaged tubes as well. Personally, I've ran Prestone Aluminum stop leak in all my water cooled bikes since the 80's all the time. 2 ozs goes in every time I flush and refill them. In all of the hundreds of top end jobs I've done, I've yet to see the threatened "buildup" and "plugging".

It's nice to know if you pinhole it, either from roost or a hit, that'll it'll seal 99% of the time without having to worry about it.

But that's just me, still a lot of folks who claim it will plug up the head and ruin the water pump--I've just never seen.

Cool pictures, thanks for sharing.

Hi,

I've had several XR600s that I've taken on some big desert trips in Egypt

(500 plus km off-road without support) and now have a XR650, my first water cooled bike. I know what spares I had to take for my XR600 but what is going to break or go bad on the cooling system for my 650 that might leave me stuck in the middle of nowhere to shrivel up and die?

Thanks, Steve

http://egge.us/etc/etc.htm (lots of desert pics from Egypt, UAE and Oman)

Just wondering,how well the natives treat you over there rideing dirt bikes on there land? Looks like the predominent bike is the reliable old school air head bike. Thanx for the awe some pics

segge,

wow your pictures are awesome....Makes me want to pack my bags and go for a ride....I cant belive how big those dunes are....

thanks for the pixs,

marcus

Don't mean to sound obvious, but don't forget spare coolant or fluid of some type in an enduro jug strapped to the bike some place. :thumbsup: Yes, I used to have a water-pumper dirt bike. :thumbsup:

Good stuff, thanks for all the great suggestions. I'm on it.

Its great riding in the area. The people from the oases we pass through are friendly and will always help if in a jam.

Thanks, Steve

amazing pics. post them on advrider. com if you have time.

bring some JB weld or similar stuff, keep in mind in a pinch w/ a coolant leak, you can piss in your radiator, dont use potable water ( ah I'm sure you can tell us about that) of course, have someone else change the fulid if you do this....

Nothing. :thumbsup:

When some clown ran into me on the trail, I found out that it is easy to bypass the left rad. We removed the broken rad, and plugged off two big hoses and one small hose. For the big hoses, my buddy whittled corks out of sticks he found on the ground. It would be better to have some plastic pipe caps made up ahead of time as the wood is porous and it did leak a bit, also you don't want any wood pulp sucking back into your system once it cools down. The small hose we folded over and closed off with zip-ties. So that was easy.

I think it would be more challenging to bypass the right rad as the hose from the water pump goes right to it, that is the one I think needs some pre-planning and extra hoses/fittings. Looking at it in the garage and figuring it out ahead of time would be time well spent.

Peter

I live in Dubai and i ride an XR650R nearly every weekend in the desert. I am planning a trip throught Botswana and Namibia in June , about 5000km. Over 2-3 weeks. We are (4 of us) shipping our bikes from here to South Africa and after the ride will ship them back. Another 2 guys from here are leaving in April/May to ride from Nairobi to Cape Town. We hope to tie up with them in Botswana and ride together through there and Namibia. Should be an awesome ride. I am going to rely on the reliability of the XR 650 R and am only taking , air filter and oil filters!! I have added some mods to the bike like an Acerbis Sahara tank, seriously better skid plate , changed sprockets for "longer legs" . Rally tires, SRC 1.5 Rad cap, high temp thermostat, SRC Fork brace (big difference in the sand!) White Bros clutch springs, Touratech GPS holder, other than that it's still bog standard.

I can ride as is up the "Nosebleed " sand dune near Fossil Rock no problem so it still has some guts!! We ride most weekends , give me a shout if you want to join.

When you absolutely positively cannot ever have a cooling related failure, (like in the vast expanse of a lonely desert) insure against non crash related failure prior to the trip by performing a meticulous inspection and replace questionable components. In addition to the items previously listed, I might include a product called Bars Stop Leak. It is an aluminum powder with adhesives and binding agents to seal a radiator leak from the inside out. The binding agents expand under the heat and the system pressure forces it into otherwise unwanted openings to atmosphere. Using the product is not without it’s risk however, used in excess it can clog you entire system.

Wrapping you header pipe with insulation woks to direct generated heat out the tailpipe, (cheap insurance), but probably the best insurance against non crash related overheating is making sure your properly jetted for you environment.

Finally I would also install a fan to you system as outlined a few other places on this forum. While you will probably have ample air flow underway, you never know when you might have to use the engine stationary (troubleshooting electrical gremlins perhaps). Safe journeys, and have a cool trip!

(ADVrider reprint)

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