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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok. I did use the search function...and google search, but could not find definitive answers to my questions, so I will ask them here.

I am building a CL350 Desert Sled (which will really see more time on gravel and dirt roads) and I'm curious about a couple of things:

First, I would like a bigger tank. What other tanks are known to be bolt on replacements for the CL350 but have a bit more capacity? CB500? CB750? others??

I also am considering putting on a different front end. I understand that the CB500 triple is a bolt on mod, is that correct? And the CB500 fork diameter is 35mm (vs. 33mm for the CL350).

So my thoughts are to mount up a CB500 triple tree and then slide in some 35mm forks off of a similar vintage (74-79) XL250, 350 or even 500, and use the wheel from the XL as well (or new rims). I realize that different spacers may be needed since the distance between the fork legs may be different because of the CB500 triple, so I'm ready for that.

I really want a 21" front wheel option and even with the 23" wheel on some of those XL listed, I could just lace up the hub to a 21" inch aluminum wheel. What I feel I gain is the strength and lightweight of the XL wheels, and lighter weight brakes, and maybe some lighter, slightly-better forks (I could also find a pair of ceriani or redwings that would be 35mm as well). I would then have the 21" front wheel which greatly improves tire selection over the 19" stock CL rim.

I was figuring that maybe the XL rear wheel may also be something I could use...or maybe just lace up the stock rear CL hub onto a newer 18" MX wheel.

My thinking is this would greatly improve the strength of the wheels for the kind of riding I will be doing..as well as greatly reduce upsprung weight.

What say you knowledgable ones.

What larger tank can I fit?

And what do you think of my plan for the front end?

Thanks.
 

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I'm building a CL350 up with a desert sled-type of feel myself, so I'm right there with you. I can't say much about the forks, though I've considered a front end swap or at the least a wheel swap so I can have a front disc brake. In regards to the tank, the one direct swap will be the CB350F tank. It's a bit taller, slightly more capacity at about 3.1 gallons. I have heard that the petcock is different and there have been debates on whether it'll work with the twin, but I'm sure something can be worked out. The other option, the one I'm likely taking, is a CB77 tank. It's much taller and ever so slightly longer and the overall capacity is something like 3.6 gallons, compared to the stock 2.4-ish gallon capacity of the CL350 tank. My understanding is that with the CB77 tank you'd need to relocate the front mounts up higher and the rear mount would need fabricated. There's a chance the seat would also need shortened a bit up front to clear the tank, but since I haven't gotten the tank yet I still don't know for sure.
 

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One of the fellow members, 66sprint, has put a parts interchange thread on this parts section. it is at the top of the page. It might help.
-Dan
 

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If you can do a little fabrication then your choices for triple clamps, forks, wheels and tanks is enormous. I try to look for pieces with characteristics I like and then get measurments and try to determine the effort to fit them; for example, I'm just collecting parts to build an enduro out of an SL350K2.
I've got a neighbor with an old KX250 that he'll give me if I get rid of it for him...the front end looks like it'll work the external length of the KX stearing tube and the SL stearing tube are about the same length...I went to the All Balls racing website (they have a geat bearing conversion chart) and found the bearing sizes for the ID and OK of both the SL and the KX are very close so I sent them an email today to see if they have a bearing that will work with the OD of the SL frame and the ID of the KX stem. If they do then bolting those forks to the SL frame will be a direct bolt on with the correct bearings...if not then I'll need to press out the stem from the KX lower triple clamp, and do some fabrication so I can fit the stem from an SL triple clamp.

I have found that's it's easier to swap parts from model to model from the same manufacturer...for instance Honda uses the same diameter stearing stems and bearings for most of their bikes for 3 decades...the only changes are usually the stem length....My 1996 CBR600 triple clamps fit the SL frame for instance.

As for tanks, you usually need to relocte the front rod and rear mounting perch and most honda tanks will work....I simply cut off the stock front rod, and get some steel rod stock from the hardware store and drill a hole where I want the front tank mount to be and weld it in. then cut the rear tank mount off and reweld it forward or back till it's right (you may also need to raise or lower it depending on the tank you use)
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
outobie said:
If you can do a little fabrication then your choices for triple clamps, forks, wheels and tanks is enormous. I try to look for pieces with characteristics I like and then get measurments and try to determine the effort to fit them; for example, I'm just collecting parts to build an enduro out of an SL350K2.
I've got a neighbor with an old KX250 that he'll give me if I get rid of it for him...the front end looks like it'll work the external length of the KX stearing tube and the SL stearing tube are about the same length...I went to the All Balls racing website (they have a geat bearing conversion chart) and found the bearing sizes for the ID and OK of both the SL and the KX are very close so I sent them an email today to see if they have a bearing that will work with the OD of the SL frame and the ID of the KX stem. If they do then bolting those forks to the SL frame will be a direct bolt on with the correct bearings...if not then I'll need to press out the stem from the KX lower triple clamp, and do some fabrication so I can fit the stem from an SL triple clamp.

I have found that's it's easier to swap parts from model to model from the same manufacturer...for instance Honda uses the same diameter stearing stems and bearings for most of their bikes for 3 decades...the only changes are usually the stem length....My 1996 CBR600 triple clamps fit the SL frame for instance.

As for tanks, you usually need to relocte the front rod and rear mounting perch and most honda tanks will work....I simply cut off the stock front rod, and get some steel rod stock from the hardware store and drill a hole where I want the front tank mount to be and weld it in. then cut the rear tank mount off and reweld it forward or back till it's right (you may also need to raise or lower it depending on the tank you use)
Thanks for the information. I too am now focused on an SL350, so the CL may have to wait a bit.
 
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