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Discussion in 'Road Warriors' started by RustyStuff, Oct 31, 2020.
I always thought the 85 Yamaha Maxim X was the bomb. UJM with a stepped seat. But that liquid cooled 5 valve I-4 was way ahead of the Suzukis I was used to.
Not sure if it is what you are interested in, but the 78-79 Yamaha XS 1100 or 750 are wonderful bikes. Shaft drive, air cooled, UJM. I've had my 79XS11 (white) since 1984, with 134K miles and XS750 (red) since 2000.
Now, there is the mother (or father?) of XJR! Looks nice...
One of the nicest bikes I ever owned was a 1983 Honda CB550 Nighthawk. 4 cyl, self-adjusting valves, shaft drive, 6 speed transmission, just a hoot to ride. I only had mine for a few months before I got rear ended by a drunk driver while sitting at a stoplight but I always remember what a sweet little bike that was. One of Honda's best IMO.
By 1985 or so, the 550 Nighthawk had become this, the CB700SC (the 700cc engine was actually around 699cc which allowed it to avoid the punitive tariff's put on >700cc bikes. These were often called "tariff buster" bikes.) The CB700SC has been called one of the best all-around motorcycles ever made.
If you can live with the geeky 80's styling (which I love, but I'm odd that way) this could be an awesome bike if you can find one.
I have ridden one, they are great fun until the subject of valve adjustment comes up. According to an old friend that owned a Fazer 700, the normal size feeler gauges don't work. So you either buy them off the Snap-On truck or from Yamaha. I don't know if Yamaha even sells the tool anymore.
Been wanting a relaxed bike lately. This one came up locally. Buying it tomorrow! I had a Drifter in the past and liked it a lot. Only sold it when I needed back on a Ducati again. Looking forward to it!
It's tough to beat the OG V-Max! Yamaha built them from 1985 until 2007 virtually unchanged. V-boost is a real kick in the pants and for an around town cruiser they are super fun. Definitely the fastest accelerating bike I've ever owned. I paid <$2500 for mine but that was 15 years ago, still should be able to find them for Sub $3K (for an 80s or 90s bike). I did a progressive spring upgrade and oil change in the forks for a BIG improvement in ride and brake dive over stock. I've seen guys tour on them with a seat upgrade and wind screen added; the tiny fuel tank would probably get a bit on annoying on long tours though (maybe the tank isn't too small but if you have a heavy right wrist you're stopping for gas often).
I think at the moment 2000s Japanese Cruisers or "Metric Cruisers" are one of the biggest bargains in motorcycling. And for whatever reason the biggest baddest ones are priced the same as the more pedestrian models e.g. VTXs, Warriors, M90s, 1500 Mean Streaks, can be purchased for under $4K locally (roached out dirt bikes are selling for more around here).
All the Japanese Cruisers are about as simple and easy to work on as it gets and extremely reliable. Obviously there's limitations in the cornering dept. but as long as you accept that you're not going to be keeping pace with sport bikes in the twisties anyone should be happy.
The Warrior has always been on my list of potential cruisers to buy:
and the M90 which is still in production. Subjectively one of the things the M90 has going for it, is that it's really not pretending to be look like a Harley.
I've always thought the big Suzuki was one of the more interesting. The Yamaha a close second.