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2009 Honda XR650L Project Bike Photo Gallery

Our off-road expert takes on the challenge of configuring the ultimate ADV bike on a serious budget by purchasing a pre-owned Honda XR650L. Check out the full story in 2009 Honda XR650L Project Bike Part 1.

The original Honda XR650L debuted in the early 90's and was based off the 600R model.
The XR has the sensation of being constantly choked up and as a result throttle response is slow. However, the bike responds well while cruising in a tall gear.
An electric starter offered a luxury to the 650L street model.
Some of the items placed in the future "to do" list included increasing the fuel range and minor suspension work.
Another problem area had to do with the foot pegs not offering a good platform for steering the heavy bike.
After a few days of riding Honda's 650L our contributor found the XR to have little vibration and a solid chassis design.
Soft conditions for the XR650L proved difficult for stock Dunlop K850A tires.
The XR650L has an extremely comfortable seating position, but upon standing it gets in the way.
Honda XR650L Project Bike
The XR650L demonstrated strong performance on fire roads where it showed some of its 600R roots.
A Doubletake mirror offers a wide range of movement to stay out of the way when not needed.
An FMF Power Up Jet Kit helps clean up the carburetion with our No Toil air filter and cage and FMF exhaust.
With just a few minor changes such as an electric starter, counterbalancer, and street legal lighting, the XR was converted into a dual sport model.
FMF Q4 exhaust system and Giant Loop saddlebags.
The Honda is gaining some credibility as a light-duty adventure touring bike.
Removing the smog equipment cleaned up the engine.
Pivot Pegz bring new levels of comfort and control.
Precision Concepts Racing went through our suspension to help the heavy XR carry itself better.
A windscreen is a necessity for any ADV bike.
2009 Honda XR650L Project Bike
2009 Honda XR650L Project Bike
2009 Honda XR650L Project Bike
The XR650L's stock exhaust was swapped for an FMF system at a cost of $359.
2009 Honda XR650L Project Bike
2009 Honda XR650L Project Bike
A billet rack was thrown on to accomodated a variety of items.
2009 Honda XR650L Project Bike
The Kings tire provided okay traction in the dirt, but on the pavement they inspired little confidence.
2009 Honda XR650L Project Bike
A No-Toil Super Flow foam air filter (below) was also added for better protection and performance off-road.
2009 Honda XR650L Project Bike
Double Take mirrors allowed us to also mount a RAM GPS system.