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visual imapct – xs650 bobber build

wFirst off, I’d like to thank and welcome WoMpY, the newest bikerMetric member. Thanks for joining, man!

Here is another one of the builds I promised you bastards earlier this week, since that’s a big thing in the poll so far. It’s a 1977 Yamaha XS650 that was turned into a **** of a bobber by Mike at Visual Impact.

I first read about the bike on Knucklebuster and visited his website where I found he was going to start building XS650 bobbers for 4,500 bucks, plus the donor bike. That was a sweet deal, so I emailed Mike to see if he’d like to tell us about the build and he hooked us up.

“Here she is,” he wrote, “a 1977 XS650. All there, little bit of rust but complete.”

At this point, he took the bike apart, bought some stuff, started welding and this is what it cost:

1) 1977 XS – cost for swapping some paint work for the bike: $600.00
2) G&L Weld on hardtail plus shipping: $295.00
3) Cut off wheels $11 and refill shield gas: $40
4) Battery: $40
5) Battery Box and fake oil can for electrics: $110
6) Weld on spring perches: $30
7) Weld on fender bungs: $20
8) 3-inch springs: $23
9) Headlight: $20
10) Used snowmobile steering component (will be used for a torsion bar if it works out as planned): $10
11) Seat pan with FREE that’s right FREE weld-on seat adjuster: $40
12) 36-grit mini grinder discs and weld wire: $30
13) Weld on kickstand kit: $93
14) Rear fender: $30
15) Gas tank: $37(may not use this one)
16) Weld on tabs: $7
= TOTAL TO DATE $1,436

“This is the actual build tally minus the electric and wear and tear on tools. I want to see what the real cost is going to be. Everything from cut off blades to grinder discs to sand paper and paint. If it wasn’t free I’m including it on the list, minus the actual cost of the shop and electric. I think it will be interesting to see a REAL build price on something, doing everything myself. No hands will be touching my bike but mine; that is unless the motor is f***ed, then I might need help.”

Then he bought more stuff and put it on:

17) Wires, switches and electrical junk: $80
18) Throttle: $15
19) Chain: $36
20) Used axle: $15
21) New metric bolt kit for cases: $28.50
22) Oil, misc. **** at Pep Boys: $30
23) New old *** tank because my first badass tank didn’t work out: $110
24) Turn signals – if I decide to use them: $25
25) Pamco electric ignition with new coil: $130
26) New updated reg/rectifier: $80
27) New rear wheel bearings dust shield: $45
28) Misc parts: $45
29) Welder reg and new gauges: $30
30) Metal for mids and tunnel for tank: $20
31) Misc. **** I spent money on: $100
32) Bars: $30
33) Tank parts: $40
34) Petcocks: $35
35) New 2-inch seat springs: $24
36) Chain roller: $31
37) New brake caliper: $33
= TOTAL TO DATE $2,539

Now it’s coming together. At this point, Mike had been at it on an off for a few months, starting in early March. He’d gone through huge hassles with eBay sellers and personal crises. Now it was the last week of June. Here is the cost tally so far:

38) Pegs: $66
39) Vintage gas cap: $30
40) New brake master cylinder: $20
41) Bracket and misc hardware: $10
42) Emblem: $30
43) Tire and Tube: $150
44) More fender bungs: $20
45) Autobody supplies and some of the paint: 150
46) Clutch handle: $11
47) Front tire and tube: $110
48) More misc. **** I needed: $167
49) Paint and paint stuff: $500
50) And even more misc. ****: $200
= TOTAL TO DATE $4,003

“Like all things in life they don’t quite work out as planned. The budget was blown wide open. Paint got expensive. Supplies for just paint and autobody was probably 700 bucks in supplies. Pretty crazy considering it was just for material. Went over budget, it took too long but f**k it……….THE END!!!!”

It was the end of July. Four grand plus labor for a freaking kickass XS650 bobber in less than five months? And you can get one from him that will be this cool for only 500 more plus some cheapass doner you practically stole from some hick out of town? Maybe you want drag bars or apes instead of clubmans. Maybe you want forward controls instead of mids. Turn signals? Wow. All that for only $4,500.

This is what I’m talking about, gentlemen. This is the underground metric bobber movement. It’s done by guys who love what they do. They’re not trying to get rich off you. They just want to buy some beer, pay some bills, and make themselves and a bunch of riders happy.

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  1. Thanks for having me… link me; I’ve linked you.

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