Jon ardcorechoppersIntroducing the latest product from Ardcore Choppers for the garage builder. The ARDTAIL! After YEARS of getting requests for a DIY hardtail with the killer lines and quality we are known for here it is. We have listened to the issues the average home builder has with the installation of other kits and working with some friends of ours in the industry we have developed and are offering the easiest to install XS650 hardtail kit on the planet, PERIOD!!!!! Not confident in your welding skills on something as structurally important as your frame? NO PROBLEM! You could literally epoxy this kit on with no worries! Of course we do not recommend this but you get the point. When we set out to do a DIY hardtail kit the three main problems/improvements we repeatedly heard and felt could be improved upon was first making the hardtail easy to square up with the front frame section.

To address this our design is a no brainer utilizing slugs and triangulation. Since we are using the engine as a jig and the stock back bone to positively locate the hardtail in addition to the factory lower engine rails its as simple as making 3 cuts, then remove the old frame section and slide the new rear section into place! Second was the amount of time spent cleaning up your stock backbone. Cutting and removing your old seat rails, the factory sleeved gusset and lower battery tray rails in addition to finishing the backbone after surgery was very time consuming. THIS KIT ELIMINATES ALL OF THAT! And lastly was the possibility of grinding/cutting into your backbone to deep when removing the factory rails causing a weak spot.

THIS KIT ELIMINATES THAT POSSIBILITY! Each kit comes with detailed step by step instructions. If you can read a measuring tape, cut 3 decent straight lines and weld two pieces of metal together you can install this kit in a couple of hours! Each hard tail is jig built based off a STRAIGHT stock frame and engine meaning when you go to install the kit it’s going to fit (provided your stock frame is straight). As with all of our products each kit is heliarc (TIG) welded, NOT MIG WELDED for great looks and superior structural integrity.

You have to wonder why most racing organizations and the Aerospace industry either recommend or mandate TIG welding on structural components! After that statement, how and why can we offer a kit that can be MIG welded? First, our kit is designed so the welds you do at installation basically just keep it from slipping apart. Even if your welds fail our design incorporates the engine and rear mount as a fail safe. And most importantly we understand not everyone has access to a TIG welder or the welding experience to use it correctly.

With our kit all the structural (critical) welds are done for you as the main stresses are carried on and in our welds. We could go on and on about what sets ours apart but since WE ARE and HAVE BEEN at the forefront of the modern XS movement do we really need to? Our intent was to have 10 of these on the shelf ready to go when we announced the release. Word leaked out and the first ones are gone so expect a 2-3 week turnaround. Cost is $325.00 with $40.00 shipping. Granted a little more expensive than the others, but to us the ease of installation and time saved is well worth it. Remember quality isn’t expensive it’s priceless.


  1. Jason says:

    These are definitely going to take a chunk out of TC’s business. I’ve used the TC tail and everything you said about cleaning up the backbone is absolutely true. Any idea what the stretch/drop comes out to? Next build for sure.

    PS.. I have talked to John at ardcore before and these guys could not be any nicer or more accommodating… they deserve your business.

  2. mike lytle says:

    this frame looks like a nice way to go, but i used a TC bro’s hardtail frame and had no issues, none!! the bottom rails are pluged and by the time you weld in a gusset for the seat front hinge the TC bro’s frame is as solid as this one, nothing against new, but for the money you really can’t beat the TC bro’s………..just sayin

  3. ghostryder says:

    would very much like to know stretch!! ive got my frame pretty much together, all pretty much scratch, but this looks structurally superior. im gonna have to gusset the hell out of what i came up with.

  4. Jason says:

    Wow, looks like a game changer! Can’t wait hear the specs. Not going to chop off my tc tail but if I ever do another one.

  5. Dogbones says:

    Hi Jon long time admirer here. Now all you have to do is move the seat post back so a single carb can go under the seat.

  6. Newman says:

    I’m sold. I was going to conjure a hard tail up but I ll spend that time riding. Right on!

  7. larocco says:

    do you mind sharing the wheeel base

  8. Jon says:

    Thanks for everyones interest. Stretch and drop- They are a standard 4″ stretch with a 2″ drop in the seat. We can change this no problem but keep in mind altering these dimensions changes the angle of the seat rails from the backbone to the axle plates. Thats one of the things that most customers like about our hardtails and frames is the lines seem to flow a little better with the backbone. Let me know if I can help with anything else.

  9. Jason says:

    This is good to see. More options for our bikes are needed. TC bros does a good job keeping the shelves stocked from what I see, but in my opinion their lines are all wrong. This is a great looking hardtail. If I wasn’t so cheap and hellbent on building my own, I’d use an Ardcore over the rest.

  10. misfitskinny says:

    common John, thats just to easy. lol Nice enginuity!!

  11. william triffitt says:

    nice just whot i was waiting for but bugger i,min aus wounder whot shiping would cost ????

  12. Kolby Mullins says:

    hey man im 18 years young and i have been working on a 72 650 for about a year now. i was looking at a TC hardtail but its not what im looking for this tail is perfect for me plus my brother is a welder and i want to do it myself. i have looked online and cant find this unit so if you could throw a price and a link my way that would be great..

  13. Nate says:

    @Kolby, the tail is $325 plus $40 shipping. Shoot us an email to order.

  14. Tebo says:

    It’ll make it lightweight, and bare-bones. If it ain’t essential, lose it. Think my ’81 is a good candidate?…

  15. Tables says:

    Well having just finished a build I am alread looking for I will also be droppin’ you guys a call. Said it before and will say it again, thanks to all you guys out there putting the effort into making us humble garage builders lives a tad easier.

  16. The Flying Imp says:

    Ya man thats another thing. If it werent for guys like this we would have to do all this ourselves. lol. but seriously props to all the guys thinking of better ways to chop your xs.

  17. DADDYG says:

    I have done over 26 bikes in the last 2 years and this is a great step in the right direction for the garage builder. VERY NICE!!! Are you going to make different designs in the future. One design gets old after a while and it looks like this is a great way to go.Not to bad of a price will have to try one out. This has alot of good design for other bikes too. GOOD WORK GUYS!!!! I would like to see different stretch designs and i know you got the market.

  18. dex82 says:

    hmmmmmmmmm…….been waiting 4 1/2 months for a hardtail from G&L that was supposed to be 4 weeks and i’m beginning to suspect i’ve been had. if nothing shows up in the near future might check these guys out as the concept certainly makes the job of lining everything up a helluvalot easier. winter’s blowin thru pretty quick and i’ve had this particular bike on hold for awhile. not big on the stance of the tcbros hardtails, the only reason i didn’t go with them in the first place, but this one seems to be right on the mark.

  19. Tebo says:

    Jon, how much did you cut down the forks (rolling chassis, 3rd picture) to make it sit almost perfectly?

  20. MOMMYC says:

    Just so you know that I know what I am talking about I have done over 759 bikes in the last 10 days and this is a great step in the right direction for the garage builder. VERY NICE!!! Are you going to make different designs in the future. One design gets old after a while and it looks like this is a great way to go.Not to bad of a price will have to try one out. This has alot of good design for other bikes too. GOOD WORK GUYS!!!! I would like for you to do what I say and i know you wont cause Im a Douche bag.

  21. Spades says:

    Ardcore rocks!! This definitely raises the bar on DIY kits. Great work Jon and crew!!

  22. Kolby Mullins says:

    @Nate thanks man i will be getting to you soon, i gotta get some cash flow.

  23. turdherder says:

    I posted a comment immediately after dex82 yesterday. All positive stuff or so I thought??????

  24. Ksdtoday says:

    The Rolling Chassis pic the top stock tree is flipped upside down.

    Ardcore is tough.

  25. Tebo says:

    Ksdtoday, great catch with the flipped top tree. I was focused on the distance between the bottom tree and the dust seal on the lower fork tube.
    Jon, where would I mount a seat pivot bracket? On the spine, or weld a gusset to the “Y” and mount it there to keep the seat in line with the spine? Or…what is your recommendation?

  26. dex82 says:

    guess what showed up by courier, my hardtail from g&l. took awhile but welds are beautiful. so i guess i won’t be ordering the ardtail this time, but she sure would be looking good if i build another one. will try to have some pics when she’s a roller

  27. Chris says:

    Brilliant! That tail will make some nice looking bikes.

  28. matt says:

    good work, now everyone can get cool quick and easy! youll sell these by the truck loads. good price, good product and good people from everything ive read.

  29. Nate says:

    @tebo, on our builds we mount the seat pivot on the backbone where the seatrails join it.

  30. j_wilson315 says:

    This sure throws a wrench in my plans. Was planning on a homebuilt hardtail but now…….. Hard to pass up the Ardcore name at this price and simplicity.

  31. mike M says:

    just a slick looking frame.

  32. Newman says:

    Any ideas on what shipping to Canada would cost? The grinder is set up and the bike is on the lift…

  33. Codlitz says:

    Mine will be in tomorrow, stoked on it. Will let everyone know how easy it is to install asap… And yes Jon is top notch nice guy!!!

  34. funnymachine says:

    tell me about shipping to the UK!

  35. Mark says:

    Yeah what’s shipping going to cost to get it to Australia?

  36. funnymachine says:

    I can see a global shortage of stock XS650 frames in about ten years LOL

    using this method it would be possible to save the back end

  37. Nate says:

    Guys,we are working on finding reasonable shipping rates overseas.. So far we aren’t having much luck due to the odd size of the tail section.

  38. nooch says:

    is this tail designed to use the stock rear wheel and axle?

  39. Victory says:


    quick question can the DIY fit a 250 tire ?

  40. Victory says:


    quick question can the DIY fit a 250 tire ?

  41. David says:

    So this can be welded mig? Is it available in certain stretch and drop?

  42. Great Dane says:

    I have a 1948 Indian Big Base / Verticle Twin Dispatch Tow Frame I Want to weld Your Tail Piece to For a Custom Build for a GR650X Suzuki Twin.

    Great Dane @
    Indian Creek Ranch
    Southern California USA

  43. Curt says:

    Does this hardtail fit every year of xs650?

  44. Daniel says:

    This thing looks AMAZING guys, GREAT JOB! My name is Daniel and I am working on a 81 XS400 and am looking for something exactly like this since I am removing the 2 frame rails that go from the neck to the upper engine mounts and only keeping the backbone. That being said will this kit mount up to my 400 (with some obvious modification)?

  45. David Williams says:

    I welded the ardcore rearsection with a 110 innershield fluxcore machine. Looks great rides great. Already put a couple thousand miles on it. No cracks no complaints

  46. Q says:

    nice product but i cannot ever get ahold of any one at this place im wandering if there going out of buisness i call 3-4 times a week for a couple weeks

  47. Calvin says:

    I ordered one a few weeks ago they are about six to eight weeks behind on them. it took me a few weeks to get ahold of them also.

  48. CryptoKnight says:

    Has anyone built one of these, and can share pictures? I ordered a 4″ stretch & 2″ seat drop, and am looking to start sketches for fabrication, but can’t find pictures of Ardtail bikes. Anyone have a side-on shot, ideally both left & right? If I can project a side shot (90-degree) left & right on a wall, I can start to rough out my fabrication sketches, but until I know the dimensions, hard to start. 🙂