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Wire Wheels and a 150 Rear - Virago 700 style!!

Discussion in 'XJ Modifications' started by MiGhost, Sep 19, 2011.

  1. MiGhost

    MiGhost Well-Known Member

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    For those of you that want something different that the blender spoke mag wheels that every 80-83 XJ bike came with as stock equipment. Here is a way to change to spoked wheels F&R.

    The Virago 700 came equipped with wire wheels in following two models.
    The 84 XV700L, and 86 XV700SS. The major difference between the two are the color of the hub (Black on the 84, Silver on the 86). and the outer rim (Aluminum in 84, Chromed Steel in 86).

    The nice thing about this is that the 700 Virago comes in close to the weight, and load ratings of the xj bikes. Eliminating the risk of overloading by using the 250, or 535 virago wheels. This also gives some beneficial upgrades to the front suspension. (Larger diameter forks, Fork brace).

    84 XV700L front end on XJ750k Frame (Test fit)[​IMG]

    84 XV700L front end on XJ750k Frame (Test fit) Front view[​IMG]

    What you will need:
    Front: You will need to get the entire front end (wheel, forks, triple tree, brakes) from the Virago. This is a straight bolt in using the taper roller bearing upgrade for the steering head. In the following list you will find that the bearing inner diameter is the same on all the models.

    Steering head bearing sizes posted on Scandalon.

    ID OD HT
    Upper: 25 x 47 x 15
    Lower: 30 x 55 x 17
    Yamaha XJ700N/NC/S/SC/XN/XS/XSC (85-86)
    Yamaha XJ900RK (83), XJ900FN (85)
    Yamaha XJ1100J (82)
    Yamaha XV700 Virago (84-87)
    Yamaha XV750 Virago (88-97)
    Yamaha XV1000 Virago (84-85)
    Yamaha XV1100 Virago (86-97)

    ID OD HT
    Upper: 25 x 48 x 13
    Lower: 30 x 48 x 13
    Yamaha XJ400 (80-85)
    Yamaha XJ550H/J/K/RH/RJ/RK (81-83)
    Yamaha XV500 (83) XV535 (87-99)
    Yamaha XV535 (91-94), XV535H/N (89-90), XV535SE, XV535T/TC/U/A/ AC/EC/F/FC/G/GC/ SFC/SG/SGC/SH/SHC/SJ/SJC (87-97)

    ID OD HT
    Upper: 25 x 48 x 15.2
    Lower: 30 x 48 x 15
    Yamaha XJ650G/H//J/K (80-83), XJ650LH (81), XJ650LJ/LK/RJ (82-83)
    Yamaha XJ750J/K/MK/RH/RJ/RK (81-83)
    Yamaha XV750H/J/K/MK (81-83), XV750SE (82)
    Yamaha XV920J/K/MK (82-83), XV920RH/RJ (81-83)
    Yamaha XV1000K/L Virago (83-84)

    That covers the stem fitting into the bearings, but what about the height?
    The real nice thing about yamaha whether intentional or otherwise is that the steering head tube is the same length on most if not all the XV/XJ line.

    Measured length on XJ750K, and XV700L: 190 mm

    The following list of lower triple tree mounts will all interchange.

    XJ Lower triple tree mount
    5N8-23340-00-33 UNDER BRACKET COMP
    Used on the following models
    XJ650G/H/J/K - 1980 - 1983
    XJ650LH - 1981
    XJ750K - 1983
    XJ750MK - 1983

    XJ Lower triple tree mount
    1AA-23340-00-00 UNDER BRACKET
    Used on the following models
    MAXIM - XJ700N/C/S/SC - 1985 - 1986
    MAXIM X - XJ700XN/XNC/XS/XSC - 1985 - 1986

    XV Lower triple tree mount
    2AE-23340-30-00 UNDER BRACKET COMP.
    Used on the following models
    VIRAGO 700 - XV700L/LC/N/NC/SS/SSC/CS/CSC/CT/CTC - 1984 - 1987
    VIRAGO 750 - XV750U/UC/W/WC/A/AC/B/BC/D/DC/E/EC/F/FC/G/GC/H1/HC1/J1/JC1 - 1988 - 1997
    VIRAGO 1000 - XV1000L/LC/N/NC - 1984 - 1985
    VIRAGO 1100 - XV1100S/SC/T/TC/U/UC/W/WC/A/AC/B/BC/D/DC/E/EC/F/FC/G/GC/H/HC/J/JC - 1986 - 1997
    VIRAGO 1100 SPECIAL - XV1100SH/SHC/SJ/SJC - 1996 - 1997

    On the 550 model check the steering head tube length mesurement. 190mm
    On the 650 & 750 models get everything for a complete front end swap.
    On the 700 models. Get only the wheel. This is a straight swap for you. You use the same fork/brake/axle shaft ass'y.

    Onto the rear.
    Surprisingly enough. The rear is a straight swap with the following exceptions. The 650 uses a different brake plate and will require the use of the brake plate from one of the following. 700 Virago, 700 Maxim/Maxim X, 750 Maxim/Seca, 920 Virago.

    84 XV700L Rear wheel mounted to XJ750K frame (Test fit)[​IMG]

    Tire clearance at swingarm with Pirelli Route 150/90-15 M/C 74H tire mounted (Test fit)[​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    On the 550 model: unsure if this would work with the chain drive.
    On the 650 model: Get the wheel, and brake plate.
    On the 700 & 750 models: Get the wheel only.

    Note: The fork inner tube length on the 700 Virago is 735mm compared to the 670mm on the XJ750, and 608, on the XJ650. This will raise the front of the bike slightly and increase the rake by a couple degrees (old school chopper trick). This will give a 2.5" over fork on the 750, and a 5" over fork on the 650. I am sure that you can get shorter fork tubes through Forking by Frank to return the bike to the stock ride height if desired.

    If you have made it this far, and paid close enough attention. You will note that the same can be done with the 5-spoke wheels available on the 85-86 Maxim/MaximX also.

    Ghost
     
    sethoneal7 likes this.
  2. skillet

    skillet Active Member

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    WOW! Something different, LOOKIN' GOOD!!!

    skillet
     
  3. thorin

    thorin Member

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    i've been jonesin' for wire wheels to bring an old school look to the bike since i got her. thanks for taking the time to post all this info!
     
  4. streetbrawler750

    streetbrawler750 Member

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    Very good info, nice work
     
  5. RoadRash

    RoadRash Member

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    Finally, a full write-up! Thanks!
     
  6. MacMcMacmac

    MacMcMacmac Member

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    Nicely done! I suspected this would be a pretty straightforward swap. There seems to be quite a bit of clearance for that tire......Vmax wheel/160 tire anyone? You'd have to fab up the rear disk gubbins but that's not a huge job. If the rake/trail thing isn't your bag, you can always slide the forks up in the triple clamps to restore the original geometry, or near to it.

    Later Virago mags are a damn sight better looking than the italics rims anyway.
     
  7. MiGhost

    MiGhost Well-Known Member

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    Thanks Guys.
    skillet: Your right. Wheels can make or brake the outcome of a build up. There are only so many ways to paint the stock mags.

    thorin: Nothing says old school faster than a set of good old fashioned spokes.

    streetbrawler: Gonna try the rear on front with wires now?

    RoadRash; Glad to see that I was not the only one suffering from information deprivation.

    MacMcMacmac: I didn't plan on the 150 originally. But the tire was already mounted. Figured I should answer that question as well.
    Fab up what? Just get a 900 swing arm. Already set up for rear disk.
    The virago forks are not air assist. They can be cut, and retapped for height adjustment.
    Later Virago 5- spoke mags are the same wheels as on the 85-85 Maxim/Maxim X

    Hopefully this will open the door to something other than flat black blender spokes on the build ups.

    Ghost
     
  8. streetbrawler750

    streetbrawler750 Member

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    Haha, would have too late now, next project perhaps....
     
  9. Massimo33

    Massimo33 Member

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    That looks really sweet, just might have to consider that in the near future....
    Old School Baby!
     
  10. parts

    parts Member

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    Awsome,

    I've been eyeing virago wheels for some time now for my 700
    since the set-up looks the same.......but didn't think a 150
    would clear the drive/swing assb'ly.

    TIME TO SHOP LOL!
     
  11. geissingerj

    geissingerj Member

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    It looks like as far as head bearings go, I can swap my XJ1100 with an XV1100, but does anyone know about the triple trees or rear wheel? I would love to be able to put wire wheels on mine, and have that extra rake after I re-do it this winter.

    Thanks in advance for the thoughts and comments. Sure hope this will work.

    Edit: Also, thanks for the great info and write up!!
     
  12. cutlass79500

    cutlass79500 Well-Known Member

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    MiGhost Glad someone finally did their homework. About a year and a half ago i wrote a write ups on putting virago rear wheel on an xj i knew it would bolt on my 700. But When i tried to get someone to take measurements on older models it just went silent. You did your homework and provided a bunch of good info for people. I also went thru the motions on lowering rpm for highway use everyone was asking if there was anyway. I thought i found a solution needed to find someone with an extra dif. to count number of turns driveshaft makes to 1 turn of the differential no answer so i dropped that also. I figured there was plenty of people on here with older xjs that would be willing to help i was not going to go out and buy older xj stuff just to see if my theory worked. In fact i used the chrome backing plate off 1 of the virago parts bikes on my maxim x really looks great. Keep up the good work. I decided not to use the virago wheels And sold them about a year ago. but did use the slotted rotors on my max x
     
  13. TIMEtoRIDE

    TIMEtoRIDE Active Member

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  14. MiGhost

    MiGhost Well-Known Member

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    Once again Thanks Guys.

    Massimo: You have something to look forward to when you finally wear out those new skins.

    parts: now you know they will work. Either the 84 or 86, no difference beyond what I stated above.

    geissingerj: Measure your steering stem length. 190mm is the magic number. If you need to adjust the length of the stem you can get the bearings in different heights also. Unfortunately I do not know of anything the uses wires with the rear disc. Check on XS11.com. If its doable to the 1100 I am sure somebody there will know.

    cutlass: It was probably your write up that pushed me over the edge! Just enough info to make me want to know more. As far as lowering the rpms, The final drive gearing (32/11 2.909:1)is the same on all the XJ series. There are some very deffinate possibilities that I have not yet been able to look into though.

    Time: That bike was one of my driving forces. I just did not like the looks of the 535 wheels on that bike. Weight, and capacity is considerably lower.

    Taken from Hanyes/clymer manuals, and Motorcycle Specs.
    Model weight/capacity
    XJ650 450/653
    XJ700/750 515/749
    XV700/750 500/748
    XV535 414/505
    As you can see. You would only be able to add 10-55 lbs to the empty bike using the 535 wheels before being over capacitiy on the wheels. Not a safe idea.

    Ghost
     
  15. TIMEtoRIDE

    TIMEtoRIDE Active Member

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    That sounds like the old XS-750 final drive ratio.
    The 650/750 XJ's have a 4.129:1 ratio.
    It would appear that the Virago 535 can only hold a 91 pound lady??
    I would guess our Spanish friend bought what he could find and that the above spec has to be a typo (??)

    Awesome job sorting all this stuff out btw!
     
  16. MiGhost

    MiGhost Well-Known Member

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    That number (4.129:1) is probably the overall gearing as there are three different reductions in the system (Transmission, Middle Drive, Final Drive). I have not researched into all the little details as yet. Deffinate plans for it though. Looking into the possibility of round a 25% - 30% overall reduction.


    That spec was taken directly from the Haynes/Clymer manuals. I have not yet been able to locate the factory manual to verify.

    Thank you.
    I have a very annoying habit of having to know exactly what I am working with. It saves money, and headaches in the long run.

    BTW. I am finding out a lot of very interesting things about the yamaha engineering proces.

    Ghost
     
  17. TIMEtoRIDE

    TIMEtoRIDE Active Member

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    Well, I just went and checked, and you're right; looks like 2.909:1
    I managed to find some facts in this here post by Woot.
     
  18. loudjosh81

    loudjosh81 Member

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    This is incredible! I wish more builders posted like this! Keep it
    up!
     
  19. ouchie

    ouchie Member

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    Hi MiGhost!

    I was checking the back brake on my XJ650 today and for grins thought I'd throw my XV700L rear on to see ow it's going to look...trouble is that I couldn't actually get it on with the brake cover on.

    Now I just pulled my existing wheel..didn't drop the final drive or anything so that is my question...do I need to pull the final drive, mate everything up, wiggle it in and then slide the axle through?

    T'anks!
     
  20. MiGhost

    MiGhost Well-Known Member

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    That would probably be the best bet. The stock XJ swingarm is designed only to allow a 130 tire to be installed without removal of the final drive. The XV700L came with a 140 tire stock.

    This is the process I followed. (bike stripped to bare frame, swingarm removed)
    1. Mount wheel, and brake plate to final drive using axleshaft through final drive for alignment (Do not forget the spacer that goes between the wheel, and final drive).
    2. Slide brake/wheel/final/driveshaft assembly into swingarm.
    3. Align driveshaft with u-joint.
    4. Remove axleshaft from final drive side, and place into swingarm/brake side (collar/washer between brake plate, and swing arm, washer/castle nut on final side ).
    5. Secure assembly to swingarm (4 nuts on final drive, castle nut on axleshaft, pinch bolt on swingarm).

    Also, make sure you use the 700 brake plate. The 650 brakeplate is a different size (smaller I believe?) Can you confrim this please?

    Ghost
     

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