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81 XS650 engine with a 78 XS650 frame and carbs?

This is a discussion on 81 XS650 engine with a 78 XS650 frame and carbs? within the Motorcycle Discussion forums, part of the General category; So I've got a 78 XS650 project bike with the engine in pieces. I've come accross an 81 XS engine ...


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Old 02-04-2013   #1
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Default 81 XS650 engine with a 78 XS650 frame and carbs?

So I've got a 78 XS650 project bike with the engine in pieces. I've come accross an 81 XS engine complete for less than what it would cost me to fix the problems with the 78 engine.

So I have two questions:

1. Will the 81 XS 650 engine fit in my 78 frame?
2. Can I use my 78 carburetors on this 81 engine?
QuinnMcLeod is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-13-2013   #2
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The engines should swap out ok. However the carbs are different in jetting. Some jets maybe pressed in which would make them impractical to change. I noticed this post is old. Have you swapped yet? Be intersted in knowing how it went.
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Old 03-14-2013   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by recycledcycles View Post
The engines should swap out ok. However the carbs are different in jetting. Some jets maybe pressed in which would make them impractical to change. I noticed this post is old. Have you swapped yet? Be intersted in knowing how it went.

I've got the engine swapped into the frame and like you said, it was just fine. In order to put my '78 carbs on the '81 engine, I had to swap out the carb boot that connects to the engine's intake. But that too was a direct swap. I guess the '81 boots were shaped different and wouldn't allow for my carbs. I am waiting now on electrical to fire the bike up and see if the '81 engine will run with the '78 carbs.

The newer engine runs an electrical ignition instead of the older points system. So I guess I need a CDI box (something to tell the coils when to fire). I'm just not sure yet if I need a 6 pin or an 8 pin. Also, I haven't been able to find a USED CDI box for less than $90. So that's slowing things down.
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