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'84 CX650E that is evolving into a GL500
19,287 Posts
You must have raised the rear end to accomplish that. What is the angle at the u-joint like? Murray has done some research about that; I can't remember the max angle he recommends but it isn't much.

What kind of fender are you planning to use and how are you going to attach it?

FWIW, my winter machine started life as a CX650E (same frame geometry as the GL500/650) and (long story) has had a GL500 swingarm and CX500 final drive & wheel since I put it together in '06. It has the original inner fender with another inner fender (slightly modified) for the outer fender (I wanted as much coverage as possible because you get a lot of spray in the winter) with the original raised cross brace (pics in the Never Ending Build thread linked in my signature).
I tried a 4.50-18 rear tire (K270s make good snow tires) the first year and even with the maximum pressure in the shock it still rubbed the inside of the fender at the top.
To keep the bolts from reaching the tire the insides of the fender halves are offset below where they bolt onto the brace so between that and the thickness of the fender you actually have almost an inch less than it looks like with the frame empty.

16 Posts
Discussion Starter · #22 ·

Amazing how time flies...but the project is somewhat done...will have some more touch ups over the coming winter.

Since I finished the frame of the skid plate, I moved onto the front forks. Tore them down, rebuilt them, dropped the spring spacers at the top and replaced them with 86mm solid spacers.

I did blast the fork lowers and paint them black as well.

I then got out the crafting supplies and started templating some underseat boxes

As I was going to an electronic tach pickup, I pulled the tach cable and then 3D printed a plug for the tach lead.

Same for the Speedo drive

Then came the battery box to relocate under the engine

Cheap multifunction gauge off of Amazon

Then the ignition and choke were relocated under the tank, behind the right cyclinder

I hacked off the stock pegs and welded on come brackets from a CRF250X

Then came the Murray Quickpipes. Shortened and a few pie cuts to get the angles I wanted. Finished with some shorty slash cuts.

I got lazy with the photos, but above you can see I pulled the entire wiring harness and rewired the bike with a NUUT system. NUUT switchgear can be seen in the next photo.

Skipping a few steps, I carved the seat foam, glued some more on to get the shape I wanted and then hastily made a rear rack as I needed to carry my camping gear on a trip on this bike.

I picked up some inexpensive vinyl and did the seat in about 30 minutes so I could head out with the guys.

So the bike is now a runner. Suspension is fantastic on road, maybe a little harsh in the fork for ADV duty. The bike sounds bad-ass and mean. Everyone who rides it comes away with a massive grin. I've got about 1000km on it now. It is the round town and backroad bike of choice for me right now.

Over the winter I'll give it some more finishing touches...probably drop the whole rear rack and maybe got to sleek seat/backend.

This was a super fun project learning all the fab and bumbling my way through the project.
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