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#1673 - 03/08/01 03:00 PM XR400 vs. XR650L
lukey Offline
New Member

Registered: 03/08/01
Posts: 3
What i really want is an XR 400 but i don't want to have to haul it around in the back of my truck every time i want to ride. As far as i know you can't ride it on the street. So the next option is an xr650L right? But then i'd be stuck with about 70 more pounds of crap that i didn't really want in the first place. Is there a way to "legalize" an XR 400 or will i have to take the plunge into the dual sport world?

Luke


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#1674 - 03/08/01 03:15 PM Re: XR400 vs. XR650L [Re: lukey]
Bobby Administrator Offline
Head Honcho

Registered: 11/16/00
Posts: 3428
Loc: Spring, Texas
That's a great question man! It can be done. I've done it twice. Very tricky though.

Example - Back in the late 80's I took an '85 Can-Am enduro (hey, it was a good bike) and replaced the lights with a bit heavier duty stuff...added a brake light switch and a bulb horn for a tricycle...and some dual purpose tires. The only problem I had getting it inspected was due to the magneto driven lights (no battery) and the fact that they gained and lowered intensity whenever the motor revved up! On the next attempt, I had the smarts to pull way inside a dark garage so the lights would show up at all.... {:o) Since then, the state laws have been changed so it's difficult to get a title changed on a bike after it's left the dealership....if it's listed "for competition only" you're toast. Most enduros are not, but the paperwork to change it over is a killer....actually, I think you can get a builders' title (junkyard title) easier.

Also you can buy a bike in another state and legalize it there, then bring it in and get the title changed very easily. Then it's just a matter of finding a station willing to inspect it....not too difficult really. The DPS book has the specs....pretty easy to make the legal definition of street legal. You can have the work done at the dealership where you buy the bike, but most will not help you get legal papers on it....to much hassle and risk I guess. I'd be curious to hear any recent stories from guys who've done it in the past few years.


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#1675 - 03/08/01 08:33 PM Re: XR400 vs. XR650L [Re: Bobby]
Hoop Moderator Offline


Registered: 12/20/00
Posts: 1830
Loc: Beaumont TX
Baja Designs, MSR and another company make D/S kits you can put on most thumpers. They cost around $400 to $500. I've done two Baja kits and one by the other guys (they got bought and I don't remember the name). The kits are easy to install in one afternoon on most bikes. Then go get insurance, get it inspected and get a title if you don't have one, then you can get a plate. If you haven't got a title, you have to prove the bike isn't stolen, and pay taxes on the purchase. You could be looking at $800 or more to get it legal. I've reached the conclusion that it isn't worth it to be legal, you can pay a lot of tickets and not pay $800. The poor man's approach is to find a friend with a gas station that will sell you an inspection sticker, and go to a junkyard and get a license plate, and register a home-built trailer to get a year sticker for the license plate. Much cheaper, but you still need insurance, which runs about $50 per year.

I've also read that you can get a Vermont plate by mail for $50 or so, but I haven't acted on that yet. I found the Vermont DMV site and it looks like it's for real, though.

Hoop
2000 DRZ400
_________________________
Hoop
2006 XR650R, the dual sport bike
2004 DL1000, the street bike

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#1676 - 03/08/01 09:43 PM Re: XR400 vs. XR650L [Re: Hoop]
Bobby Administrator Offline
Head Honcho

Registered: 11/16/00
Posts: 3428
Loc: Spring, Texas
Jeez, Hoop! You're gonna get us all arrested! {:o) I could have told him that stuff, but I didn't want to have to schedule in time to go down and see him on visitors' day at the county hooscow! Thanks for the input....you're right about all of it....except you neglected the cost of insurance for a young guy after getting all those tickets. That was very accurate info though.




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#1677 - 03/14/01 03:06 PM Re: XR400 vs. XR650L [Re: Bobby]
Greg Offline
Vet AMSA Director

Registered: 12/18/00
Posts: 1277
Loc: Austin, TX
If you buy, say, an XR650R and do all the work yourself to make it completely street legal, then can you get a homebuilt or junkyard title for it?

My only experience with this was a long time back with an XR185. I used a six volt dry cell battery in the tool bag that powered the tail light and brake light. I got that bike inspected easily. Some [email me] [email me] [email me] [email me] [email me] stole it though. I had a Can-Am 250 before that, but it was the dual purpose model not the race bike. Some other [email me] [email me] [email me] [email me] [email me] stole that bike too.

Now I have an XR650R that left the dealership as a street legal bike with title. I don't see how anything could be better for dual purpose thrashing, unless you want to ride Emma Long (City Park) in Austin. 300 lbs. is a lot to fling up those cliffs. The DRZ400 would be better in the tight woods, but you'd miss the extra 250cc on the street. The XR650R with the power kit hauls major @$$. Can't wait till I get back to Houston with it... I wonder if they've paved all the bayous yet?

Greg



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#1678 - 04/13/01 09:54 PM Re: XR400 vs. XR650L [Re: lukey]
JoeTom Offline
New Member

Registered: 01/17/01
Posts: 2
Loc: Central Texas
I have a Baja Designs Dual Sport Kit and it cost a little over $300. It was easy to install and I did not install the turn signals because it is not a must have in Texas. Now I can ride in areas that I could not before because they have to treat me just as they would any other vehicle(like in Big Bend). I mounted the license plate and tail light on a different fender that I take off if I'm going to a race. The cool thing about it is that now I have a horn to honk at people I pass in the races.

JoeTom

When it's too tough for everyone else, it's just right for me!
_________________________
When it's too tough for everyone else, it's just right for me!

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#1679 - 04/16/01 03:12 PM Re: XR400 vs. XR650L [Re: JoeTom]
Greg Offline
Vet AMSA Director

Registered: 12/18/00
Posts: 1277
Loc: Austin, TX
Ok, since I mentioned Houston..

I was there last weekend and NO they have not paved all the bayous! I wish I had a speedometer for one of them, it was smooooth. The 650 is great on the street too, for those times you need to square off the asphalt turns a little with a feet up powerslide. Or sit on the back of the seat and let it wheelie for you. With a big enough moter, dual sportin' can be fun again!

Greg



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