I was randomly reading through this thread this morning, dreaming of the various projects I would love to do with an XR600: street tracker, USD conversion, cafe racer, frame swap into a supermono racer...
Then this evening I walked into a friend's motorcycle shop and a mutual friend of ours was sitting there talking about how he had just picked up a 1997 XR600R project bike but didn't have any place to keep it or time to invest in it. I raised my hand and I am now the proud owner of said bike for what my friend bought it for: 200 bucks.
That being said, the thing is a total POS at the moment: wiring is hacked, front end is shot although the rear seems to be in good shape, the carb is somehow frozen shut, I think someone fiddled with it and reassembled it badly, and the motor gains compression but the loses it just past TDC, I think an exact valve is too tight.
Despite the work required, I'm happy with my purchase. Now, depending on whether or not it is truly street legal, it will either become a cheap city bike or the basis of a wild transformation.