Checkout the online shop for new parts and service for you ride!

Click Here for more info on parts! Thanks - Hughs.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Engine Building Services - Now Available

Well folks, I've been avoiding advertising my engine building services for a few reasons, so here is the scoop!

Yes, I will build your XS650 Engine.  I have been building these engines for a while un-advertised, and mostly for fun.  Hang with me for a moment, and you'll see what I require to build an engine for you. 

Check this bike out, other than a Re-Phase and a 5th Gear overdrive, this engine is BONE STOCK internally and is even running stock carbs.  I've ridden this bike, it performs flawlessly and puts a serious smile on my ugly mug...  

Or you can have a Big Bore, Rephased, Cammed, Ported and Polished XS650 Engine running Lectron Carbs like this:

Hugh's Personal Engine Building Philosophy:

1.  Do Not Rush Me - I enjoy building these engines, but if you think a large sum of cash or a checkbook is gonna put me in a hurry, forget about it.  It takes time to do the job properly, and I will not sacrifice quality work so you can meet a deadline.
1.5 - DO NOT try to impose a deadline - I'm not on The Discovery Channel.
2.  I will only build Re-Phased Engines - Why bother tearing it all the way down and NOT improving it.
3. I DO NOT mark up parts - You can supply them if you like, or I can source them locally.  Support your local Independent Parts House
4. No, I am not going to "Leave the Patina" on your old crusty XS650 Engine.  A clean engine is a Happy Engine.  That said, please do not bring me an oily nasty lump.  I brush my teeth and floss before going to the dentist, and you should too... 
5.  No, I will not share all my secrets, tips and tricks.  But I will incorporate them into your build.  This is included in the labor charges.  Consider it a bonus.
6.  YES, I do have vendors I prefer to use for parts.  I like to get my Big Bore stuff from Gary Hoos over at Hoos Racing , all my gaskets and small parts come from Mary over at City Cycle Supply, and of course the hard to find stuff comes from MikesXS.  I use only USA made hardware when available.
7.  No, I will not tune your carbs for you.  If I have a weak link in my skillset, it is painting sheetmetal and tuning XS650 Carbs.  I cannot tune for your riding style, environment, altitude, etc..  I use only Lectron Carburetors for my personal use.
8.  Yes, I will communicate with your during the build process to keep you informed of progress and/or parts needs.  Any good vendor should be able to do this, but sadly most do not.
9.  I only use Pamcopete for ignition - He is in South Carolina, a real honest and hard working American with excellent customer service and tech support.
10.  I will not start an engine build without a parts and labor deposit of 50% - The remaining balance can be paid upon pickup or shipping of the engine. 

So, if I haven't turned you away from wanting a Hugh's HandBuilt engine by now, then we should probably start talking about the basics. 

Labor - I charge a modest $950 in labor to build your engine.  What does this include?  I fully clean and disassemble all parts, bead blast the cylinders, and head/head cover, repaint the top case and soda blast the lower case.  I inspect all parts for wear and make sure all tolerances are up to par, or replace the parts as needed.  I then chase ALL threads, repair poorly threaded holes, and reassemble slowly using proper torque specs and parts.  I use all new hardware if possible.  I will also degree in the camshaft to the crank for a perfectly timed engine.  I do not charge extra to install a big bore kit,  although having your cylinders bored for oversize pistons is NOT included in my labor.  I do not charge extra to install ANY aftermarket parts (i.e. Rods, 5th gear Over Drive, Clutches,Big Bore kits, valves, etc...)

Re-Phasing - I charge $300 for the crank, and $185 for the camshaft.  If you have a camshaft from Megacycle rephased, I do not charge extra to use it in the build.  Any other outsourced rephased parts will incur an extra charge.  Educate yourself about the process here, -  why to build a proper crank, -  and the benefits of doing so here......

Head Porting - I will do a mild port job on your head for an extra $200.

NEW Parts - I will use all new gaskets, seals, o-rings, copper washer, stainless hardware, camchain, cam chain guides, sump filter, oil filter, rocker arm plugs, 1 piece clutch rod, upgraded clutch throwout bearing, clutch springs, and clutch disks.  The market is a little bit variable lately, but you can price all these parts yourself through MikesXS to get an idea of the basic cost of parts I will be installing. 

REUSED Internal Parts:  I typically prefer to reuse stock bearings inside the engine if they are all in good shape.  The aftermarket replacement bearings are nowhere near the quality of the originals.  I will reuse the rods inside your engine if they are still in spec, although you are welcome to purchase new rods if you like.  The oil pump will be checked for spec, and 99% of the time they are in good shape.  Of course there is no indication of an engines life until it has been torn down.

External Parts:  What carbs, pipes, controls, etc.. you prefer are up to you.  I'll be glad to work around your preferences.   If you choose to add my PMA Charging System or any parts from Pandemonium Cycles  I will not charge you extra to install them. 

So if you are interested in an XS650 Engine from Hugh's HandBuilt - Email at or call (828) 505-8171 and we can discuss your personal goals and desires for your engine build.  


  1. If you were to build a 750 re-phase, would the stock clutch take that kind of power? What about a hydraulic clutch? Does a 750 kit reduce reliability?

    I know these are kinda off the cuff questions...just curious. I love your work man...been following your stuff for a while and will eventually hire your services I'm sure.

  2. personal goals: world domination

    desires: my xs650 motor rebuilt and re-phased by hugh

  3. Matt, The stock clutch is ok if its in good shape, if not you'll want some upgraded springs and disks, and de-glaze the steel disks while you are at it.. The Hydraulic Conversion really doesn't affect clutch holding power, its just the release and engage mechanism. 750 kitted engines have plenty of life in them, you'll be fine...

    Trent - I can definitely help on the 2nd of your list...

  4. i see those funky exhaust supports in the video... was wondering what your thoughts about exhaust supports are when given custom exhaust setups... i put drag pipes on mine with some fabbed metal strap supports coming up from the bolt where the center stand used to be.... they promptly broke one after the other during a long freeway ride (full suspension bike).... in your opinion is it even an issue to run a pipe like you've got in the video or a little longer without support? I am now because it seemed like more stress to unwrap the pipes and re-make the supports, no problems so far.

  5. Always run proper pipe supports. Nothing sucks worse than having the studs broke off in the head on the side of the road. Sounds liek your supports were under built, or under tension when installed...

  6. Wow love your work. My buddy an I are in beginning phases of XS build. I wasn't all that thrilled bout it. I'm a converted lover of the XS bikes. Thinking my buddy an I should plan a road trip down to meet you. Great work! I'm hooked cause of your site.

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Checkout the online shop for new parts and service for you ride!

Click Here for more info on parts! Thanks - Hughs.