'98 Seca II or '05 FZ6?

Discussion in 'Road Warriors' started by Jakeba, Feb 5, 2013.

?

1998 Seca II (9k miles) or 2005 FZ6 (21k miles)

  1. Seca II

  2. FZ6

Multiple votes are allowed.
Results are only viewable after voting.
  1. Jakeba

    Jakeba n00b

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2013
    Oddometer:
    2
    Hey all, new guy here...

    So I am wavering between two options for my next bike. And they are:

    1998 Yamaha Seca II with 9k on it Maroon and asking $2200 (from a dealer so some, but very little price wiggle room)

    Or...

    2005 Yamaha FZ6 with 21k on it Blue and asking $2900 said they would do $2800 (but since its a private seller I may be able to talk them down more)

    What are some initial thoughts? I am not a heavy long trip rider, but aspire to do so in the future. I have owned a Seca II before and remember loving it, but I have heard many great things about the FZ6. My main concern is maintenance. Seeing that the Seca is 15 years old, even though it has low miles, I am afraid of a lot of continual work needed on it. And the FZ6 does have higher miles, but I have heard so much about their reliability and long interval maintenance requirements.

    SO...any experience with both or suggestions? Advice? Are price points good? Mileage?

    Thanks for your input!

    -Jim
    #1
  2. Cat0020

    Cat0020 El cheapo

    Joined:
    May 1, 2002
    Oddometer:
    5,664
    Location:
    NW of Philly, Hoboken, Brooklyn, Jamaica NY.
    Seca has rock solid engine, simple and easy to work on. $2200 seems a bit high for 15 yr old bike, I think they are easy to find at lower prices on Craigslist.

    FZ6 at $2900 sounds like a fair price, you can probably talk it down pretty easily when you show up to see the bike in person.
    Money talks and cash is king.:D
    #2
  3. gymply

    gymply Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2007
    Oddometer:
    250
    Location:
    Fort Worth
    I bought a brand new leftover '06 FZ6 in 2008. I fitted it with a Givi topcase and used it mostly for commuting. Had around 20K trouble free miles on it when I sold it a couple of years ago. Fun, comfortable bike with a lot of power in the upper RPMs. Got 50 MPG if you could keep from twisting the wick too much. Did the occasional 600 mile day on it with no discomfort. If I remember correctly, I think there was a recall for suspect throttle position sensors on some of the '04-'05 models.
    #3
  4. Tim_Tom

    Tim_Tom Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2011
    Oddometer:
    801
    Location:
    High Desert, CA
    For that small of a price difference I vote the FZ6. 15 years improvements will make a huge difference. Things like the alloy frame, and fuel injection, greatly improves suspension, and needing much less little maintenance items.

    Now if the Seca was $1200, maybe. But at that price its more than I would pay for an older bike.

    As long as the FZ6 was maintained properly, 21k miles should be no big deal.
    #4
  5. BanjoBoy

    BanjoBoy Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2009
    Oddometer:
    878
    Location:
    Northern CA
    No brainer, FZ6 :D
    #5
  6. Cat0020

    Cat0020 El cheapo

    Joined:
    May 1, 2002
    Oddometer:
    5,664
    Location:
    NW of Philly, Hoboken, Brooklyn, Jamaica NY.
    I seem to remember the FZ6 valve adjustment due at 22k or 27k mi.
    Show up to take a look at the FZ6 in person; park it on the centerstand, check the tires/chain/sprockets, etc... all that may add up to another $1000 to replace.
    #6
  7. elementalg20

    elementalg20 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2008
    Oddometer:
    807
    Location:
    Melcher, Iowa
    Definately make sure the FZ6 doesn't need alot fo work, but it's certainly more bike for not much more money otherwise. It feels a little bigger ergo wise to me, I owned a seca and for me(5' 10" 190lbs) it was on the edge of just being too small. Certainly a fun little bike, but the fz6 is more of everything all in all. Water cooled, more power(especially top end as it's not a torque monster lol), EFI is a big plus, more modern chassis and really all around better build.
    #7
  8. Grainbelt

    Grainbelt marginal adventurer Super Moderator

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2006
    Oddometer:
    27,205
    Location:
    Minnyhappiness
    26,600 mile valve adjustments. I had mine checked at 27k and they were in spec, so they didn't pull the camshaft and it only cost me $160. The tech sorta laughed, said they rarely move unless you do a ton of trackdays.

    Tires are not cheap, the big 180/55 rear and 120/70 front are standard sizes but good sport touring rubber will cost $300 for a set.

    Chain and sprockets, if original, will be somewhere close to being shot at 21k miles. $200 bucks there.

    Then there's all the little stuff, brake fluid and fork fluid and whatnot that you should do over the course of the first few months as time allows. Same goes for the Seca though, on all counts.

    The flip side of that is, that is all you really ever have to do with an FZ6. I have 43k miles on my '06 and it has been superb. EFI, 5 gallon tank, aftermarket luggage, centerstand - it is a fantastic backroad and interstate bike. It is a terrible city bike - snatchy, late-engaging clutch, low power under 6k RPMs. I'd still recommend it over the Seca II for the upgrades in tech and being quite a bit newer.
    #8
  9. Jakeba

    Jakeba n00b

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2013
    Oddometer:
    2
    Thanks for all the info. Definitely going with the FZ6!
    #9
  10. mrbreeze

    mrbreeze Long timer

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2007
    Oddometer:
    9,129
    Location:
    Tennessee
    IMHO the FZ6 is one of the best bikes that's ever been offered in North America, or anywhere else for that matter. I don't doubt that the Seca II is a great bike, but I had an FZ6 so I know it's a great bike.

    When Yamaha came out with the Seca II back in the early '90's (I think), they offered a big brother to the Seca II in Europe - the 900 Diversion. It got pretty dismal reviews in the British press, but I wanted one bad. Air cooled in line 4 with shaft drive. That's all I need!
    #10
  11. AutoXer

    AutoXer Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2012
    Oddometer:
    22
    I owned a '92 Seca II (bought new) until 2005, when I got a new '05 FZ6. I sold the FZ6 in 2010 and I don't miss it. Here are my PERSONAL VIEWS on them both:

    The most important difference is how the motors work. The Seca is a nice everyday rider, adequately fast. The FZ6 is a sport motor - you gotta keep it wound up or its totally gutless, thus if you keep it up in the power band its always a frenetic ride in comparison. The Seca is a nice relaxing ride. So you need to know whether your likes are screaming a motor to a crazy redline all the time, or enjoying the ride. It is a very significant difference between these bikes.


    FZ6 ADVANTAGES:

    Brakes are superior.

    Headlight is a bit better (more spread to the sides).

    Better handling at the limit. I don't drag a knee, so it wasn't a significant issue.



    SECA ADVANTAGES:

    Reliability - in 13 years, other than tires and regular oil changes, I put a new battery in at the 12-year mark. That's it. The FZ6 had 2 recalls in that time, and steering head bearings were a known issue (mine were going south when I sold it)

    Maintenance - Seca is air cooled and stone simple. Nothing to go wrong, and nothing ever did.

    Tach - the digital tach in an '05 FZ6 SUCKS!!!!!!!! Totally unreadable, to me.

    Smoothness / vibration - I had to buy and install bar risers, adjust the handlebars to a different position, and buy gloves with a gel pad in the palm to minimize (not eliminate) a problem where my wrists ached and my hands went tingly & numb within 10 minutes / 10 miles. Not an issue with the Seca.

    Fuel Economy was 7-10 miles per gallon better with the Seca in town or on the highway.

    Smell. Yes, smell - the tail-mounted exhausts of the FZ6 means your body blocks the air flow, so the exhaust is not carried away in the wind. As a result, the exhaust smell coats you, your clothes, your soft luggage ... you will stink. The (now ex-) wife and my daughter continually complained that I smelled of exhaust after returning from even a short commute. After a week of riding I always had to wash my textile jacket because it stank so bad I could not hang it in my work cubicle. Not an issue with the Seca.

    Better commuter - see motor info at top, and fuel economy and smell above.

    Insurance - cheaper.

    Under-seat storage - significantly more.

    Seat height - lower.




    Again, just my take on them having owned both.

    jZ
    #11
  12. EastBoundAndDown

    EastBoundAndDown Rubber Duck - puttin' the hammer down

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2010
    Oddometer:
    754
    Location:
    NE Atlanta
    I rode everywhere with my buddy on his 2009 FZ6, 24K he put on it in 3 years. I rode it plenty.

    Great machine. Lousy clutch, buzzy at 80mph. Choppy, light switch throttle that lurches when twisting the grip.... It has the low end power of a 600cc inline 4.

    50mpg if you ride it sane, 91rwhp, saw 140GPS on it myself and it could have eeked a bit more out. EFI, great handling, decent wind protection, especially with an aftermarket screen. Great looks in my opinion, 26k valve clearance check intervals, FACTORY CENTER STAND, for a 600cc bike, roomy ergos and decent 2up,

    Highly recommended
    #12
  13. Jimmy the Heater

    Jimmy the Heater Tilting the Horizon

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2004
    Oddometer:
    2,151
    Location:
    WA Palouse area
    That Seca II is way overpriced. I have seen those on Craigslist in very good condition for $1200 to $1500.
    #13
  14. AutoXer

    AutoXer Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2012
    Oddometer:
    22
    One plus to add for an '05 FZ6 that I forgot - really amazing rain protection.
    #14
  15. JerryH

    JerryH Banned

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2009
    Oddometer:
    5,069
    Location:
    Chandler, AZ
    Not counting the price, I'd definitely prefer the Seca II over the FZ6 if it was in good condition. It is a sweet looking bike, it has an old fashioned air cooled carbureted engine which goes all the way back to the early '80s to the Seca 550. simple and dead reliable. The FZ6 is not very pretty to me, has that ugly modern look, plus liquid cooling and worst of all fuel injection. Some very expensive things to go wrong. The Seca II design is well proven over decades of use, and should be a lot more fun to ride. Parts are still available for that engine, and it is easy to work on.
    #15
  16. davidji

    davidji bike curious

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2009
    Oddometer:
    1,113
    Location:
    california
    Yeah. Usually you can find lower than dealer prices. But it's worth it to some. I'm cheap and I've only used a dealer when buying new.

    If the prices were creeping up to $2k and I wanted similar, I'd prolly look at a Bandit 600.

    I think I sold my nekkid '97 Seca II for $1200. If I had it now I'd probably keep it to have a spare commute bike.

    I think the Seca II valve adjustment is much easier than the FZ6, though a bit more frequent (Valve checks at 16k miles?).

    If I were deciding between the two I'd prolly go with the FZ6 just because I've never had one. But neither is what I want right now. Which would you rather ride?
    #16
  17. davidji

    davidji bike curious

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2009
    Oddometer:
    1,113
    Location:
    california
    I sure hope 21k isn't high miles. I've got more on the bike I bought new December 2011. Still seems like a new bike to me.
    #17
  18. chazbird

    chazbird Long timer

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2009
    Oddometer:
    3,785
    Friend had a Seca II and he put over 80k utterly trouble free miles on it. Also knew of a Seca II messenger bike with 200+k on it. But maybe Yamaha forgot how to design/build engines and the FZ6 engine is a POS in comparison?
    #18
  19. Grainbelt

    Grainbelt marginal adventurer Super Moderator

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2006
    Oddometer:
    27,205
    Location:
    Minnyhappiness
    FZ6 motor is pretty much bulletproof. I don't know of any issues, and I've been hunting for them for a few years.

    In fact, other than soft fork springs, there isn't much to bitch about.
    #19