Tag: Yamaha motorcycles

  • Yamaha XS650 bobber

    Yamaha XS650 bobber

  • Chris Hunter Custom Motorcycles ,

    Motoshop Tonouchi has done it again. After grabbing attention with their retro BMW-inspired Sportster custom, they’ve created one of the tastiest XS650-based bikes we’ve seen for a while. The ‘Heritage Special’ reprises the monochromatic look, with sleek, perfectly judged bodywork—note the lovely curved panels under… Read more »

  • Yamaha DT-1

    Yamaha DT-1

  • Chris Hunter Classic Motorcycles ,,

    The 1968 DT-1 is more than a contender for Yamaha’s most important motorcycle. It’s a bike that broke things wide open for the entire Japanese motorcycle industry. Words by Mitch Boehm, Editor & Publisher of Moto Retro Illustrated. Photos by Joe Bonnello and Ed Burke… Read more »

  • Yamaha XT600 cafe racer

    Yamaha XT600 cafe racer

  • Chris Hunter Custom Motorcycles ,,

    This sharp-looking custom started life as a 1992 Yamaha XT600E, of all things. It’s owned by Australian Mark Wotherspoon, who wanted a fun bike for his daily commute and weekend blasts around the hinterland backroads. His objectives were to reduce weight, increase horsepower and improve… Read more »

  • Old Speed Factory

    Old Speed Factory

  • Chris Hunter Custom Motorcycles ,

    I’m finding it harder and harder to get excited by the Japanese custom scene these days. Along with checkered stripes and the whole Ace Café aesthetic, it’s starting to feel a little tired. This is the first Japanese bike that’s caught my eye for a… Read more »

  • Yamaha Virago custom

    Yamaha Virago custom

  • Chris Hunter Custom Motorcycles ,,

    One of the most underrated custom platforms has got to be Yamaha’s Virago. It first appeared as the XV750 in 1981, and made an immediate impact—to the point where it was one of the bikes that prompted a US tariff on imported motorcycles over 700… Read more »

  • Yamaha TX650

    Yamaha TX650

  • Chris Hunter Custom Motorcycles ,,

    When is an XS650 not an XS650? When it’s a TX650. Owner Chad Goings posted his bike on our Facebook page, and after the comments lit up, I contacted him for more information. His Yamaha is a 1973 model, but it’s effectively just a name… Read more »

  • Yamaha RD350

    Yamaha RD350

  • Chris Hunter Classic Motorcycles ,,

    By guest writer Tom Stewart. Hard core café racers are generally built for show and go—there aren’t many built for daily commuting and long-distance touring. But this air-cooled Yamaha RD350B, purchased new in 1975 by the late British racer Howard Lees, didn’t stay in standard… Read more »

  • AN-BU XS650

    AN-BU XS650

  • Chris Hunter Custom Motorcycles ,

    The Yamaha XS650 just will not die. The parallel twin appeared in 1968—like me—and thanks to cutting-edge unit construction and SOHC design, continued in production until 1985. That’s an extraordinary run for a motorcycle. And along with its SR400 stablemate and Honda’s CB series, the… Read more »

  • 1979 Yamaha HL500 Replica

    1979 Yamaha HL500 Replica

  • Chris Hunter Classic Motorcycles ,

    Down here in Australia, winter is starting to draw in. We don’t get bad winters—certainly not cold enough to warrant having a ‘riding season’—but when I saw these pictures, I immediately thought that a little snow’s a good thing. Especially if you have a supercool… Read more »

  • Yamaha XS650 cafe racer

    Yamaha XS650 cafe racer

  • Chris Hunter Custom Motorcycles ,,

    A few months ago, one of the leading Australian motorcycling magazines was redesigned. (I shall avoid naming it to protect the guilty.) It was admittedly looking a little staid and nondescript, but now it’s worse—it’s virtually unreadable. Every page and every gaudy little detail is… Read more »

  • Yamaha V Star 650

    Yamaha V Star 650

  • Chris Hunter Custom Motorcycles ,

    What do you do if you’re saddled with a small metric cruiser you don’t particularly want? Sky Fleming, a reader from Utah, found himself in this situation recently. He got a Yamaha V Star 650 in trade for an ATV, and instantly developed a dislike… Read more »

  • Yamaha YZR500 OW35K

    Yamaha YZR500 OW35K

  • Chris Hunter Racing Motorcycles ,

    By guest writer Richard Fowler of Motorsport Retro. When a young Kenny Roberts first ventured to Europe in 1978 to ride in the 500cc World Championship, no one was expecting him to be a title contender. But he was armed with the brutal Yamaha YZR500… Read more »

  • Yamaha Maxam CP250

    Yamaha Maxam CP250

  • Chris Hunter Production Motorcycles ,

    When I first stumbled across this odd scooter, I thought it was one of those concepts that would never see the light of day. And yes, the Maxam CP250 did start life as a concept—way back in 2005. But then Yamaha put it into production.… Read more »

  • Yamaha Seca custom

    Yamaha Seca custom

  • Chris Hunter Custom Motorcycles ,,

    I guess you could call this motorcycle a ‘real world’ custom. It’s Jon Fife’s Yamaha XJ650/900 Turbo Seca prototype, and it comes from a desire to create the perfect sport tourer. It’s a story of painstaking upgrades and modifications over the years, and the quality… Read more »

  • Carefully Considered Mac

    Carefully Considered Mac

  • Chris Hunter Concept Motorcycles ,,

    Mac is a startup motorcycle manufacturer based in rural England. You might remember that the company caused a flurry of excitement a few months ago, when it released images of four café racer bikes designed by Xenophya. Production plans seemed to be in place, with… Read more »

  • AFT Customs Er Hed

    AFT Customs Er Hed

  • Chris Hunter Custom Motorcycles ,,

    This isn’t a vintage Harley custom: it’s a cleverly-crafted 21st century Yamaha that took first prize in the ‘metric’ class at last year’s World Championship of Custom Bike Building. Er Hed was designed by Jim Giuffra of California-based AFT Customs, which bills itself as ‘the… Read more »

  • Yamaha XT600Z Ténéré

    Yamaha XT600Z Ténéré

  • Chris Hunter Production Motorcycles ,

    In the late 70s, ‘dual sport’ or ‘enduro’ style bikes with long-range fuel tanks were starting to attract attention in Europe. In Japan, Yamaha took notice. In 1981, they started work on a production version of the motorcycles racing in events such as the Paris… Read more »

  • Yamaha RD350 custom

    Yamaha RD350 custom

  • Chris Hunter Custom Motorcycles ,,

    In the early 70s, the Yamaha RD350 set the motorcycling world on fire. It was light, rapid and unforgiving: in the right hands, it could comfortably see off a 750. In the wrong hands, it was a one-way ticket to the hospital. This restored and… Read more »

  • M/C Upper Yamaha XS650

    M/C Upper Yamaha XS650

  • Chris Hunter Custom Motorcycles ,

    Yamaha’s XS650 is one of those bulletproof, long-running Japanese motorcycles that have insinuated themselves into popular—and custom—culture. It appeared in 1968 and was produced for almost twenty years with only minor changes, and today, it’s second only to the SR400/500 in popularity with Japanese custom… Read more »

  • Yamaha SR500 tracker

    Yamaha SR500 tracker

  • Chris Hunter Custom Motorcycles

    Giannis of Speed Junkies bought this 1981 SR500 from an owner who thought the bike had a transmission problem—but it just needed a clutch adjustment. After fixing that, he decided to convert the bike into a tracker, doing most of the work himself. “I didn’t… Read more »

  • Vicente Design

    Vicente Design

  • Chris Hunter Custom MotorcyclesRacing Motorcycles ,

    You may know Jean-François Vicente. He used to run a French retro custom outfit, VD Classic, that we’ve featured before. J-F has a new company now, called Vicente Design—and he’s pursuing a more eclectic style of bike building. “One day I woke up thinking twenty… Read more »

  • Death Spray Custom

    Death Spray Custom

  • Chris Hunter ArtistsCustom Motorcycles ,,

    We first noticed David Gwyther of Death Spray Custom a year or so ago, when he was painting motorcycle helmets and skateboards better than anyone else. The London-based artist is now aiming for the big time, with a raft of cool collaborations to his name—including… Read more »

  • Yamaha XS650 tracker

    Yamaha XS650 tracker

  • Chris Hunter Custom Motorcycles ,,

    The king of street tracker style in the US is Mule Motorcycles‘ Richard Pollock. Right now he’s working on a Yamaha for a customer in Vancouver, Canada—and here’s a sneak preview. The project began as a request for a frame, but soon turned into an… Read more »

  • Yamaha SR400 by Luxe Motorcycle

    Yamaha SR400 by Luxe Motorcycle

  • Chris Hunter Custom Motorcycles ,

    Luxe is one of the smaller Japanese custom builders. They’re based in a little white-painted wooden workshop at the foot of Mount Akagi, and like most of their ilk, stick to the four staple ingredients of the Eastern scene: the Yamaha SR400, SR500 and XS650,… Read more »

  • Yamaha SR400 by Gravel Crew

    Yamaha SR400 by Gravel Crew

  • Chris Hunter Custom Motorcycles ,

    The Kuwana City shop is getting more and more attention lately, and if they keep building customs like this Yamaha SR400, that’s not going to change. Most Gravel Crew bikes are Yamahas, but this new SR400 build has more of a vintage feel than the… Read more »

  • 1972 Yamaha R5C

    1972 Yamaha R5C

  • Chris Hunter Custom Motorcycles ,

    There seems to be a growing appreciation of super-quick two-strokes from the 1970s. Yamaha’s more recent SR400 has long been the weapon of choice for most Japanese custom shops, but in the west we’re seeing more and more vintage oil-burning Yammys such as the RD400… Read more »

  • Yamaha RD400 cafe racer

    Yamaha RD400 cafe racer

  • Chris Hunter Custom Motorcycles ,,

    When you think of Yamaha café racers, it’s usually the SR400 or SR500 that crops up. But Chris Fiaccone of Dallas, Texas, has shown that the RD400 is a terrific starting point too. He’s into bikes that are fun and nimble, and this two-stroke twin… Read more »

  • Yamaha FZR1000 custom by Lazareth

    Yamaha FZR1000 custom by Lazareth

  • Chris Hunter Custom Motorcycles ,,

    Frenchman Ludovic Lazareth has a factory in Annecy-le-Vieux, near the Swiss border, and turns out an extraordinary variety of vehicles. These include cars as well as motorcycles, and eye-popping quad bikes and snowmobiles. Lazareth’s extreme style makes him popular with action movie-makers, and his bikes… Read more »

  • Big Moon Yamaha XS650

    Big Moon Yamaha XS650

  • Chris Hunter Custom Motorcycles ,

    Big Moon’s Yamaha SR400 wowed us a couple of months ago, but the guys at the Okayama-based shop have just gone one better. This street tracker based on Yamaha’s iconic XS650 is just perfect, from the curve of the bars to the tiny low-set indicators,… Read more »

  • Deus SR500 street tracker

    Deus SR500 street tracker

  • Chris Hunter Custom Motorcycles ,,

    Most Yamaha SR-based customs hark back to the golden age of cafe racers. But the Australian specialist Deus has taken a jump into the future with its tough-looking SR542, nicknamed “The Mono.” This particular machine started life as a 1978 SR500, but you’d never know:… Read more »

  • Gravel Crew Yamaha SR500

    Gravel Crew Yamaha SR500

  • Chris Hunter Custom Motorcycles ,

    The boys from Kuwana City have an eye for elegant understatement, as their latest SR500 custom shows. Gravel Crew built #60 for a Mr. Tutiko, but unfortunately there are no specs on the website. But we can see the foot controls have moved forward, the… Read more »

  • Yamaha TW200

    Yamaha TW200

  • Chris Hunter Custom MotorcyclesRacing Motorcycles ,

    When James Kellas left England for Australia, he had to leave his drag-racing hobby at home. So he ordered a TW200 to use as a commuter bike, and tore it apart. He installed a fuel tank from an RD250 and added clip-ons, new wheels and… Read more »

  • Yamaha SR500 street tracker

    Yamaha SR500 street tracker

  • Chris Hunter Custom MotorcyclesPhotographers ,,

    Randall Cordero is one of America’s top motorcycle photographers, and his shots of this ‘bumblebee’ Yamaha caught our eye. This 1978 500cc thumper is owned by veteran rider Russ Somers, an art director for Simpson Race Products. It’s packing a White Brothers cam, a flatside… Read more »

  • Yamaha SR400 by Big Moon

    Yamaha SR400 by Big Moon

  • Chris Hunter Custom Motorcycles ,

    The up-and-coming Big Moon custom motorcycle shop is based in the city of Okayama (which is also home to Kōraku-en, one of the Three Great Gardens of Japan.) Big Moon owner Eiji Otsuki focuses on the classic cafe racer platforms: the Yamaha SR400 and Kawasaki… Read more »

  • Stinky Yamaha SR #21

    Stinky Yamaha SR #21

  • Chris Hunter Custom Motorcycles ,

    In the shadow of Mount Fuji lives Yamaha SR cafe racer specialist Custom House Stinky. For 25 years Stinky has taken a modular approach to bike building: seats, tanks, headlights and aluminum fenders are made in-house, by hand. To recreate the look of bike #21,… Read more »