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Old 03-24-2010, 12:25 PM   #78
XTwarrior OP
My bike is older than me
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Joined: Jul 2007
Location: Allentown PA
Oddometer: 281
Originally Posted by royalthumper
Hey thumper fans. So I popped my cherry when I bought an 83' Xt550 last fall. Its been sitting in the garage all winter until yesterday when I pulled her out. She starts up fine although when i'm in first she coughs out blue smoke. I remember the guy i bought it from said that there were some leaky valve seals. is this most likely the problem and if so is it a pain to fix. Also where can i find a kickstand for her? Also cleaning the carburetor would probably help her run more smoothly.
Thanks for helpin out a NOOB
I would definitely clean the carb and maybe replace the gas if it is old. I've seen old gas put out blue smoke, though not a ton.

The valves on the XT are relatively easy to get at if you are handy with tools. It is possible to remove the top end from the bike with the engine bolted in, but it is a very VERY tight fit. You have to take the gas tank off. Then I loosened the cam cover and slid it out over the cam chain with some coaxing. It seems like it won't clear the frame and cam, but with a little puzzle solving skills it does

I admittedly haven't gone farther than that, having no consumption issues at this point. I went that deep to service the cam chain itself when we thought it had skipped.

Whether or not the valve seals are the issue stands to be seen. I'd say replace the gas, and clean the carbs good and see if the smoke cleans up. I mean, it is the cheapest and easiest thing to do first, and it never hurts to clean the carbs. If it doesn't then I'd dive into the valve seals, and maybe pull the cylinder to look for worn/bad rings or piston wall damage.

Also, I haven't looked into it, but maybe see if XT500/XT350 kickstands are the same from around those years.
2006 SV650 Nudie/ZX14 shock/Delkevic 225mm silencer/Fender Elminiator
1983 XT550 Projecto!
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