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Tips » Honda XR650R Parts, Service, and Repair

Posts tagged Tips


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Differences Between Years

The Honda XR650R was produced for seven years. There are virtually no mechanical differences between these years of production. The only significant mechanical change during that time was:

In late 2001 the clutch bushing was updated with venting holes and a thin galley way to improve oil flow and prevent binding and sticking, particular when the bike has been left sitting. This is a very minor change and is a very simple and cheap fix if you happen to have one of the early models.

The original bushing part number was #22116-MBN-670

The replacement bushing is part number #22116-MBN-671

If this part hasn’t been replaced on your bike it is a good idea to do it before it fails. Failure of the bushing under stressful conditions can damage both the clutch basket and the shaft, so better safe than sorry.

The only other changes to the bike over those years were to aesthetics. The seat cover and tank graphics changed a couple times during production of the bike, but of course that has no effect on performance.

Starting the XR650R

If you’re new to the Honda XR650R you may be finding yours difficult to start. An XR650R can be hard to start for a variety of reasons:

  • Improper jetting
  • Incorrect fuel mixture screw setting
  • Incorrect idle adjustment
  • Valves clearances out of adjustment
  • Clogged or damaged air filter

If you believe any of those reasons to be the problem there is plenty of information available on this site about how to remedy them.

BUT – If everything is ok, there is a common procedure for starting the Big Pig. If you don’t follow this procedure you may have trouble. Every bike is setup a little different, and the environment will play a role to a certain extent (temperature, humidity, elevation). However, below is the starting procedure that I recommend, and is recommended by many other owners as well.

It sounds like a lot but it will become second nature. Using this procedure an XR650R should start up 1st kick every single time.

CONDITION: COLD ENGINE (COLD START)

  • Turn on the fuel and put the bike in neutral
  • Turn on the choke (lift the choke lever up)
  • Pull in the manual compression release lever (left hand, on clutch perch)
  • Pull out the kickstarter and kick the motor through briskly 3-5 times
  • Release the manual compression release lever
  • ** Slowly and gently kick the motor until you reach Top Dead Center (kick starter has strong resistance)
  • Pull in the manual compression release lever
  • Slowly and gently push the kickstarter a couple inches to push the piston past TDC
  • Release the manual compression release lever
  • Return the kickstarter to the top of it’s stroke
  • Give one good solid kick making sure to follow through all the way to the end of the stroke
  • If the engine doesn’t start repeat starting at (**)

CONDITION: WARM ENGINE (HOT START)

  • Pull in the manual compression release lever (left hand, on clutch perch)
  • Hold the throttle completely open (full throttle)
  • Pull out the kickstarter and kick the motor through briskly 3-5 times
  • Release the manual compression release lever
  • Close the throttle completely
  • ** Slowly and gently kick the motor until you reach Top Dead Center (kick starter has strong resistance)
  • Pull in the manual compression release lever
  • Slowly and gently push the kickstarter a couple inches to push the piston past TDC
  • Release the manual compression release lever
  • Return the kickstarter to the top of it’s stroke
  • Give one good solid kick making sure to follow through all the way to the end of the stroke
  • If the engine doesn’t start repeat starting at (**)

My bike fires right up – does yours!?


Starting the XR650R with sandals:

Starting the XR650R with bare feet: