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TR1 Discussion Boards >> General technical TR1 discussions >> [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.

Message started by Evripidis on 21.01.23 at 07:16:29

Title: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Evripidis on 21.01.23 at 07:16:29

Hi all,

Looking at gathering important information before buying a used TR1.

I would like to ask if the head-gasket issue is real and whether the 2nd generations are actually better thatn the 1st. This is what I read somewhere.

Other things I should be looking for.


Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Triwinger on 21.01.23 at 15:35:27

Hi Evros, hi all,

as some of you know already, a little "TR1 bike family" can be found in my bike shed. (Some of them „projects/wrecks" only, which could serve as part donators.) Most of the bikes are the early ones (code 5A8), and one bike is a late model (code 19T). Apart from the design, you can tell the difference also by the serial number on the frame and engine housing: The early models have a 5A8-00XXXX, whereas the late models have a 5A8-01XXXX.

Concerning the reliability and/or weak points of the TR1 as a second hand bike, the most important point might indeed be the cylinder head gasket topic: The cylinder head gaskets of all the TR1 bikes were quite „special“. This concerns both model years 1981 and 1982 (also sold 1983-1984) and the TR1 as well as the early XV 750 and XV 920. When Yamaha developed those head gaskets, their idea was to produce only a thin ring, containing a sandwich mix of asbest (for thermal stability) and several thin sheet metal layers (for smooth ductility which shall lead to a tight gasket that covers eventual geometrical tolerances). As the gasket ring is so thin, most of the surface between head and cylinder would be able to have a direct contact, leading to a good thermal exchange between those two aluminum parts.

So far for the „good intention“ of Yamaha. But unfortunately, the first series of the cylinders had a little „gap“ between the gasket ring recession and the vertical tunnel for the timing chain. It was that „gap“ that caused the issues: The compression pressure found its way from the combustion chamber to the timing chain tunnel.

So, the TR1 riders developed several workaround options: 1) Closing the gap by welding and machining the cylinder or 2) putting in a filling piece, similar to a tooth seal (as in the photo below), or 3) putting a slim „bow shape piece“ of sheet metal into the gasket ring slot, which will work as barrier or blocker. That sheet metal piece shall have a material thickness of 0.5...0.6 mm, a width of about 5...6 mm and a length of about 50 mm. (Suited just to fit into the gap, similar to the adjusting work that we all know so well from our dentists... ;-).)

For the late series, Yamaha tried to solve the issue by closing/leaving out the gap. They did that by modifying the shape of the casted aluminium cylinders. Yamaha also helped customers with early bikes that had shot their gaskets: Those customers got a replacement, containing cylinders of the second series.

Quite often, the blown head gaskets are affecting the rear cylinder (which gets a little bit warmer when riding), and the blow through area can be found on the timing tunnel side. Bikes that begin to blow through are sometimes making funny noises (similar to a hammer beating on a steel base plate). That noise is no deep „buff, buff“, but a more metallic and sharp „tak-tak“ noise, comparable to a worn out piston rod bearing or a valve play that is much too big.

One of my project bikes is a fine example of that kind of issue: It has a broken rear head gasket (with the area between cylinder and head all covered in oil). And, funny enough, it is just the late series model - whereas all my early model machines have tight gaskets. (Knocking on wood...).  

From the today point of view, I think there will be not much difference between the early and the late models. The gasket solution still seems quite "special" (or let's say "weird") for both models. Most aftermarket gaskets are not suiting well. And original Yamaha gaskets (NOS) are not so easy to be found today. So, the most reliable solution would be to swap the cylinders against XV 1100 cylinders (allowing to use "regular" cylinder head gaskets, which are still available at Yamaha, as they also fit for the Virago series).

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Triwinger on 21.01.23 at 15:46:00

Apart from the head gasket issue, other model differences and/or weak points between early and late models are:
  • Carburetor/manifold hose clamps: The early ones were too weak/narrow, resulting in carbs that fall off while pressing the starter button. Workaround: Installing better (=wider) hose clamps.
  • Front brake rotors: The early ones were sheer, the later ones had oblong holes/slots. Those holes shall usually improve braking in the rain. But the risk is that, over time, they get cracks at the ends of the oblong holes.
  • Chain cover housings that are not completely tight. (Both series affected.) In some cases, the machining of the chain cover housing parts lead to sharp edges on the sealing surfaces, which destroyed the corresponding O-ring gaskets. (Workaround: Reworking the sharp edges by smoothing them out.)
  • The second series had a different seat and a plastic tail cover, together with a conventional rear fender (mounted to the rear end of the frame), whereas the first series had a rear fender mounted to the rear cantilever swing arm. This design difference can probably be regarded as „more or less a matter of taste“ only. Advantage of the early series: A very massive passenger grip - and at the end of it a little luggage rack, sizewise suitable for a women's handbag. (And as we all know: In some cases, it can be of distinctive importance to have a happy lady on board...)

However - dear Evros, I wish you good luck for finding a fine bike that suits both your taste and gearhead skills... ;-)


Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Evripidis on 22.01.23 at 07:55:52

Dear Triwinger,

This response is far more than I was hoping. Thank you very much for this, it is really appreciated. The closest I got were a couple of posts from people talking about installing xv1100 heads/cranks etc.

So, fitting xv1100 cylinders/heads/pistons would also require machining the block cases as well? The remedies that have been described do not sound too troublesome to apply other than sourcing the parts but it is something that I would like to avoid at least in the frist couple of years of ownership.

In any case; do you think that acquiring a later model would be a better solution for trouble-free riding for at least several years? Or getting a low-milegae TR1 irrespective of the year it came from? As you say, the rear cylinder can pack it in on a hot day on these v-twins.

I can find some low mileage examples for example a first generation with 14k miles. But not many second gen ones about especially with willing owners to sell remotely.

Thank you again for all your patience in writing this excellent response.

Best Regards,

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by nanno on 22.01.23 at 08:41:15

Hi there Evros,

the XV1100 cylinder are a straight fit. You could even run them with the stock TR1-pistons, if the clearances of the actual pistons and cylinders match. It gets tricky, when you go down the XVS1100 and BT1100 family. Those can be fitted, but you have to modify the engine case and the cam chain tensioner.

The big plus with the XV1100 setup are the more conventional headgaskets, which simply cause a lot less (read that as in no) hassle.

Whether you should go with a first or second gen TR1 is really up to you, most of the Gen1s that are still out there and running will have some sort of fix implemented (Yamaha dealer recall or one of the various fixes that private people came up) or simply have a headgasket groove machined that is the correct depth.  :)

And even you didn't ask: brakes and other ancilliaries are standard of the era Yamaha stuff, so there's plenty of repair kits etc. available.

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Evripidis on 22.01.23 at 18:01:00

Hi Greg,

Just making a note; I have found your blog well before joining this forum. I cannot remember when or why but I did.

There is a low mileage example in the UK but the asking price I believe is a bit high. I'll ring them up and see if they have a final price for me. It is a gen 1. I think that gen 2's are definitely 80's and a bit more streamlined in their rear-end design.

So Just the cylinders off an xv1100, not even the heads? Isn't the capacity any different then?


Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by nanno on 23.01.23 at 06:56:22

Cylinders are 95mm bore as are the TR1 cylinders and the same deck height. There actually was a (relatively) rare XV1000 with the same cylinders, but the later headgaskets. Oh of course you can use the XV1100 cylinderheads, but this will drop the compression ratio even further. (I run a set on my Turbo TR1 exactly for this reason - the actual compression is below 8:1, which is perfect for forced induction, but makes the engine rather sluggish off boost.) If you wanted you could go the other way and install XV700/750 heads to increase the compression, but then you'll end up with smaller valves. Which is fine in its own way as this will shift the powerband down and they are still big enough... (but we're on a bit of a tangent here  ;) )

The difference in capacity between XV1000 (TR1) and XV1100 comes from the difference in stroke. Which is also why you can't mix XV1000 and XV1100 pistons as the height of the gudgeon pin is different. On a XV1100 crank, the XV1000 pistons would poke out over the top of the cylinder by quite a bit.


Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Anja-D on 23.01.23 at 16:22:37

Good Day Evros  and to all,
Here are some addresses for NEW Parts:

Both, for XV1000, 5A8 and XV1100, 3LP :  (Piston, Pistonrings => Piston and Piston Rings in serveral Sizes according the need of drilling out to the next Bore oversize and Piston Pin)

Let we say some words to the Cylinder Head Gasket: At the late 1970th when the TR1 Projekt was scheduled, Yamaha inventors dicided to integreat the Engine as stessloaded Part of the Frame / Chassis. Therefore the Engine Componets like Housing, Cylinders and Cylinder Heads where concepted as strong as enough to fullfill that job. At that Time it was undiscovered Land for Serial Manufacturing. The Engine is shaped in V2-Concept. That means, both Cylinder Heads are Ancor Components for the Engine mounting. Therefore  the lenght between the Center of the Crank shaft and the Top of the Cylinder Heads MUST be constant. They are resulting in a geometrical triangle.  
The Cylinder Head Gasket of that Days are more slim Flat-type ones with a metal ring towarts the Compession Chamber. Those Gaskets are tending to get ccompressed when the cylinder Head ist getting be torqued.
Yamha Inventors decided to went an other way. To keep the triangle Concept intact, even when the Cylinder Head is torqued, all System Components ( Housing, Cylinder and Cylinder Head) are installed with full Flange Contact to each other. To keep this System going, they had to design a new Type of Cylinder Head Gasket. Even so with the gab between Cylinder-Head-Gasket and the Cam-Chain Channel. The new Type of  Gasket had to seal it from the compressed Gas of the Cylinder. So the spiral-type-gasket made from thin Metall stips was born. With all new Concepts, it is nearly normal to get faced with toothing problems. So the same with the early XV 1000 Models, including a few XV750 (4X7). Yamaha Europe spend a lot of Money to get this technical fault served. With the later Models XV1000 SE (23W) or the later XV 750 and XV1100 of 1993 -1996 are without of this Problem even so the more newer BT1000 Model.


Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Evripidis on 23.01.23 at 20:10:01

Greg and Anja,

Thanks for the heaps of information and what is to me, historical as it seems.

The more I discover the more it seems like any tr1 generation is adequate for trouble-free riding.

What would you guys consider a "low-mileage" for this bike, assuming proper maintenance and care?


Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by nanno on 23.01.23 at 20:45:35

Expect that around 50,000km a badly maintained example may need new pistons. Either get one, which is close to that mileage and simply figure the overhaul into the costs or get one with a freshly built engine.

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Anja-D on 23.01.23 at 20:51:52

Hello Evros,
low Milage is relative. Much more important is, how the operating and maintenace of the Bike was.
What I mean is:
There are more long distance rides or more short trips or was it used to ride to the grocery or baker a.s.o. in the history of the Bike.
Was the Mainenance done correctely , with competence or more than a driver made => only the neccessary<= job.
Was there an oil Change with filter regualry done?

If the Owner / Driver is a person which runs the bike until something cracks or is it a person who repairs it when problems starts to begin?
A good idea is to let the Owner drive his/her bike. Then you can see how he/she rides it and you get an impression how it was treated in the past.

14t miles =>22500 km it is OK so far. Evros, have a look for the general conditions of the Bike. Milage is not all.

I have attached a pic of my bike, January 2023, 27200 Km (168944 Miles) age of 40 Years. Regular Maintenace, tech. Checks a.s.o.  have renewed it 2016 with a conversion with a XV1100 Engine after the original XV1000 Engine had a serious Damage at 262000Km (162732 Mils).
Do you see, 14t Miles is just run in. All depence on how you treat a Bike. Trips of 2500 Km Roundtrip are no problem.


Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Evripidis on 24.01.23 at 19:51:52

Anja, this is a great example and reasonable advice. 270k is phenomenal on any vehicle.

I know what you mean about owners and regular/proper maintenance.

I don't think that I am going to be able to even test ride it or even inspect it before purchasing. I might take the plunge and do it all remotely.

I have found one in the UK sold at a store, and is the one with 14k miles I was on about. The price is a bit steep though and I will try ringing them up for a final price.


Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Anja-D on 25.01.23 at 15:09:20

Hello Evros,
if you want to purchaise a bike far far away from your home, try to contact TR1 Owners with a little bit more experience then regular knowledges about a TR1.
Perhaps such a Contact Person is able to get a personnel look at such a bike you are interested in.

Another Idea could be, to ask the seller to make a video of compression test  => live on video, and he shall run the Bike so you can get a more realistic Impession of the Subject.

Perhaps you can find here at TR1 Forum a person who can assist you, if you want to buy a bike in Germany.  
Do you have seen the register tac " Mitgliederkarte" on this Side?

Good Luck to You in purchaising a, your Own, TR1 in good shape.

(Suzuki GT250 Ram Air `73, SR500 `79, XS500 `78, XS2 (later renamed XS650) `72, TR1 `81, XV750SE `82, XJ650 4K0 `83, TR1 `81)

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Evripidis on 26.01.23 at 19:58:19

Hi Anja,

Thank you again for your response and for your ideas.

I have the membercard in mind thanks for mentioning.

The next one that I can find  I will try and find the closest member and ask them nicely. If they want me to pay for their service I will do so.

Hope to speak again.

Best regards,

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Evripidis on 16.02.23 at 06:51:32

Hello all,

Hope all are doing all right.

I would like to ask your opinion on the following two examples:


There are also others that have replied my messages but are not fluent in English and won't understand what I am saying.


Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Kroete on 16.02.23 at 08:42:16

Hello Evros,

the first was offered for a longer time with a price of 4.999. Around two months ago he decided to lower the price. Seems to be a clean bike. Custom mirrors, blinkers and tail light, seat and fender (fixed). Chrome of the front exhaust pipe seems not to be very nice. But with that few kilometers it should be not a bad deal. Although the price is not the cheapest. Depends on what you are willing to spend.

The mentioned cardan drive is obviously not true. But he says all parts are in a good cared state. There shouldn't be any surprises.

The second is cheaper and although he says that the bike is in quite original state it isnt. Light gray is used for some aluminum parts like the rims. Drilled rotors, new painted side cover. Front blinker and tail light, fenders of other Yamahas or bought parts.

In comparison the prices have their good reasons. I would have more confidence in the first one. But what can fotos say?
Talking with the sellers can give you an additional feeling for the bikes and their history and state.

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by hornschorsch on 16.02.23 at 14:26:59

The first one looks much better to me. You just have to mount a new, black, seat-cover and possibly mount a pair of BT46 tires. The mileage could also be 138.000 km after 40 years, but that wouldnt matter. Fit the larger oilpump from the 1100 and drill up the lower banjo bolt that holds the oil lines to the heads and it will run another 100.000 km...

The second one is quite ugly with its non-green color, footrests, gray painted rims, ugly taillight and so on...

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Evripidis on 16.02.23 at 20:08:29

Hello guys,

Thank you for your input. It is taken under consideration.

These two sellers are the only ones that consistently returned my emails. I also do not like the fact that both of these are not in original condition.

The mileage is always to be questioned.

I have been watching these two for a couple of months and the prices have been dropping consistently.

I guess I will have to wait and see. There are others but no one will respond.

There is a local FZR1000 (20 valve) on for sale locally but I am not yet willing to give up on a TR1.


Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Kroete on 16.02.23 at 21:13:58

A very nice and sophisticated bike too, but I prefer simple maintenance and long lasting use with little costs for parts and fuel.

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Evripidis on 16.02.23 at 21:26:58

Kroete wrote:
A very nice and sophisticated bike too, but I prefer simple maintenance and long lasting use with little costs for parts and fuel.

Exactly why I haven't changed my mind yet against a tr1.

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Kroete on 17.02.23 at 00:15:09

What about a XV 750 Midnight?

There was a very nice XV1000 Midnight Special too, but seems that it has found a new owner already.

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Evripidis on 17.02.23 at 18:37:20

I saw the midnight special that you are on about.

I kind of don't like the shape of it though... The tr1 is more...streamlined !!??

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Kroete on 17.02.23 at 20:36:59

Yes, its a question of the look and the way you want to drive and sit on the bike.

Yes, the form of the gas tank is not beautiful. But the lines of a TR1 gas tank are interrupted
to the side cover lines too. So this is similar on both bikes: a bit over designed.

I guess the Midnight Special or Virago is more komfortable and the TR1 is a more "normal" bike with more upright sitting.
I've never sat on a Virago so that's just my guess.

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Evripidis on 17.02.23 at 20:38:38

I find the virago seating configuration tiring if I am honest. Good for first 30 minutes or so, but maybe it is just me. I get a back ache after that.

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Kroete on 17.02.23 at 21:02:51

I test drove a Harley for one day. That was comfortable and without problems. Had you tried a Virago?

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Evripidis on 17.02.23 at 21:06:18

I ride a small 250 daily to work and also rode a 750 several times. I find the posture tiring if I am honest.

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Kroete on 18.02.23 at 01:39:56

Ok, so a Midnight Special is sufficiently justified as no alternative ;-)

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Evripidis on 18.02.23 at 06:54:49

I'll keep on trying to find one. I find it surprising that I am willing to send out cash and pick up later and no one would respond thinking this is a scam. In the worst of cases they get to keep the money!

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by hornschorsch on 18.02.23 at 10:14:06

Choppers are not comfortable. The best touring bike for long distances is a sports bike, so the FZR1000 may not be the badest choice. Also the TR1 is not really a cheap bike, the starter costs a lot of nerves and the fuel consumption is not very low... But this thread is about buying a TR1...

Evros, where are you located? Lots of germans do not speak english and if they receive an email in englisch they either just cant read it or they are mistrustfull, with good reason because there's a lot of spam/scam/whatever. Perhaps you need an intermediary who buys the TR1 for you.

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Evripidis on 18.02.23 at 11:56:39


I am in Limassol, Cyprus in Europe.

The following seller has responded but does not know English. He also relisted today:

Is there anyone local or that can send them a message or two? :)


Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Kroete on 18.02.23 at 12:49:03

Yes, I can do it for you. Its not so far from my home.

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Evripidis on 18.02.23 at 12:51:10

He must remember me, let me know either here or via personal message.

Maybe someone from Germany can explain to them and then it will be OK.

I am willing to disclose any personal information and identification to convince that I am not trying to scam anyone.


Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by hornschorsch on 26.02.23 at 16:39:28

What did the seller say? When will the shipping company fetch the bike? Or is this after all just a scam?

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Kroete on 26.02.23 at 17:14:13

Evros ist ein sehr netter Kerl.

Solche Unterstellungen hat er wahrlich nicht verdient!

Erstaunlich sind aber Verkäufer, die sich nicht melden!

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Evripidis on 26.02.23 at 17:44:04

Hi all,

Kroete, thank you for your kind words.

In summary:

1. DKProjectTR1 has a son whos is selling a bike on kleinanzeigen. I have sent him a message on this forum and he did not respond any further. The moderators have the permission to go in my private messages and check.

2. I have sent DKProjectTR1's son a message on kleinanzeigen multiple times and he has not repsonded. Kroete has also done this for me and got no response either.

3. I have exhanged emails and whatsapp/viber messages with popeye who is selling a lovely first gen tr1 with many mods from Sepp, thus reliable. We had a good conversation with popeye and he sent me many pictures and videos. I told him that I would like to wait until I can find a good second gen without mods (his has some mods like exhaust, brakes, handlebars). Also I do not want to ask him to lower his price because he is very nice so I'd rather wait a bit longer.

To all the people I have contacted I have offered any means they want to convince them. Popeye has also suggested a vergy good process on doing this that if I proceed.

Best Regards to all,

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by hornschorsch on 27.02.23 at 10:20:51

If you try a bit harder you can possibly talk or post a TR1 from germany to cyprus. Otherwise you have to take the money, travel to popeye and buy the bike from him. The first generation TR1 is nicer than the second gen with the fast plastic back and if popeyes bike has the needed technical modifications it will be a good choice. So if you really want a TR1, go and buy it.

Popeye has also suggested a vergy good process on doing this

This process works as follows: Sit down at the kitchen table, sign a buying contract, pay the bike with real money, receive the papers and keys, go home with the bike.

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by hornschorsch on 27.02.23 at 10:25:25

Kroete wrote:
Erstaunlich sind aber Verkäufer, die sich nicht melden!

Es steht jedem frei mit wem er Geschäfte machen will.

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Kroete on 27.02.23 at 20:40:22

Klar, es steht auch jedem frei, sich anständig zu verhalten oder auch nicht.

Beides hat Konsequenzen.

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Evripidis on 27.02.23 at 20:44:39

Yes Popeye's TR1 is a good example and well-maintained. It has some nice bits that are not original and not to my taste such as

1. non-adjustable monoshock from wirth (still nice)
2. non-original exhaust headers (stainless yes, but still not the double-walled original and also no mandrell bends but welded elbow joints that I hate),
3. non-original paintwork with pinstripes (I hate pinstripes),
4. Yamaha and TR1 decals are missing,
5. front brake conversion from other yamaha (still good but unknown source, how am I going to get replacements?)

also like I said it is gen 1 and I will go for a gen 2 in a heartbeat. This is a nice example and I do not want to break anyones heart by asking them to lower the price. Popeye wants 4000 EUR for it and I will not haggle as I respect people, fair enough. I know these go for at least 1000 eur less and in more original conditions, admittedly not as maintained. I have seen posts on this forum, and kleinanzeigen. HaraldS sold one some time ago and I was in touch with him from kleinanzeigen. That was a perfect example.

From Hamburg it will cost me 980 EUR for the shipping company to pick up and deliver to the Limassol port. 4980 EUR plus registration costs, etc. is a touch expensive for this bike. 3.5-4k is fine but 5k+ is beyond the phsychological barrier of my wallet so I'de rather wait for at least a better example.

Thank you all for your help and I would appreciate to divert any future advertisements or interested parties and anyone who would like to sell towards my person and we will work something out in a legal and respected manner.

Evripidis Karseras

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Triwinger on 28.02.23 at 01:39:52

Hi all,

dear Evros, I understand you are looking for a bike that gives you kind of a "love at first sight" feeling. (This was at least what I hoped to feel when I started to look for interesting old motorbikes and beginning to build up my little private classic bike collection.) Furthermore, your favorite model is a 2nd generation TR1. And therefore, a 1st gen bike most probably won't be able to give you the "Yes, I want it" feeling. I appreciate your interest and sympathy for the TR1 bike. And I believe you: To me, you seem to be seriously interested in buying such a bike. So you will organize everything around the deal in a way that is absolutely fair and okay for the seller. This is why I would like to support you if I can.

So, first of all, let me report you some of my experiences when establishing my little classic bike collection and buying old motorbikes from far away.

I live in the northern part of Germany (near to Hamburg). In 2016, I bought a Yamaha XS 850 bike via Ebay. The seller was located in the southern part of Germany (Bavaria, 650 km away from my home). On Ebay, the bike had been described by the seller as "in fine condition, perfectly running and very reliable" with a full technical service "shortly ago". And the photos looked fine to me, too: The bavarian collector owned not only the Yamaha triple, but also about seven other fine looking dream bikes of the 70ies and 80ies - plus a convertible sports car (Alfa Romeo). So, to me all that looked as if I could be confident: "He is a reliable guy. He has enough money and technical knowledge to maintain his bikes properly, and has in fact given them the total loving care that they need."

So, optimistic as I am, I went to Bavaria by train (one-way ticket) to get "my new and shiny bike" and ride it home proudly on a sunny spring sunday. But my journey ended early: After 60 kms only, the fine triple engine stopped running in an impressively dark bavarian forest. The battery had no juice anymore. The root cause of that was a heavily corroded/burnt connector between alternator and rectifier. Therefore, the bike was absolutely unable to charge the battery. I am completely sure that the seller knew about that issue before giving the bike to me, because the photos in his Ebay offer showed the XS 850 constantly connected to a battery charger. And of course, either the rest of the bike was not as good as the photos had made be believe: Dead battery, rust on frame tubes and battery fixation bracket, brake fluid color "something between brown and black" with some kind of thick "honey material" in the brake cylinders, rusty brake pistons - and so far and so on. No, this was not at all a "well serviced beauty".

I experienced the same before in 2015 when buying my green 1st gen TR1: The seller (located in Saxony-Anhalt, 350 km from my home) seemed to be a reliable guy. He honestly told me about the dead battery and the worn out steering head bearings. But after having taken the TR1 home by trailer, I found some more "hidden issues":
  • carburetor and starter with broken cast housings, nevertheless remounted again by some ruthless person (not necessarily the seller)
  • rust hole in the left muffler (The usual area, down at the front tip. Welded already, but broken again)
  • electrics not working (cable harness modified in a dubious "DIY style", rear indicators and horn without function)
  • and so on.

And 2018, when I bought a little 80 ccm two-stroke Honda MT8 in the Netherlands, it was the same experience again:
  • seller was a collector and an expert for those little Honda bikes ("brommers", as they call them in the Netherlands)
  • bike in original condition, looking absolutely fine on the photos, but...
  • battery missing
  • electrics completely without function, cable harness corroded
  • broken spokes in rear wheel
  • worn chainset
  • old tires ("wood instead of rubber")
  • speedo cable missing (-> mileage obviously not true)
  • exhaust rusty and with some "creative drilling holes" in it
  • some small parts missing.

Furthermore, when buying the little Honda in the Netherlands, I experienced similar issues to yours when contacting the seller:
  • As I'm unfortunately not able to speak Dutch, I wrote him in English. (Which might have made me look as "some of those payment trick artists from Africa"...)
  • In order to proof that I'm reliable, I offered him to send him half of the money in advance and paying the rest cash when visiting him to get the bike.
  • Nevertheless (or maybe just because of my money offer), the seller was very cautious and skeptical: He obviously believed that I was in fact one of the usual spammers. It took me a lot of energy to convince him that I will really visit him to get the bike. (I wanted to avoid that he sells the bike to someone else in the meantime, so that I would make a 2 x 600 km Holland trip just for nothing.)

See part 2...

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Triwinger on 28.02.23 at 02:07:30

Part 2

Now, this is what I learned from my "honeymoon trips" to Bavaria, Saxony-Anhalt and the Netherlands:
  • Motorbikes are an emotional thing. So, me as a buyer, I'm not able to judge the condition of a foreign bike correctly as long as I'm "hot and in foolish love with the new bike".
  • I can not identify all the weak points of a 40 year old bike only by looking at some bright and shiny internet photos. And even a visit at site and a test ride won't be able to tell me all the important topics that these old two-wheeled ladies keep in stock for us (well hidden...), even if we regard ourselves as true motorbike aficionados.
  • Instead of "showing me everything at the first date", the old lady will "show me everything later": Step by step, the bike will teach me everything about all the mistakes, sins, neglected services and other foolish operations that all the previous owners have left in it. And if those old mistakes are big enough, I might even be able to tell which of the former bandits had left it in the bike. (To me, discovering those issues seems similar to the work of a graphology expert or a police detective. Fortunately, that is big fun to me. Otherwise I might already have burnt those damned old bikes down...)
  • I have made this "archaeological surprise experience" with all the bikes in my collection. Therefore, when estimating the total budget of a future project in advance, I just double the asking price of an offered bike to get an idea of how much the bike will cost me in total.

A TR1 will be about 1.500...2.500 € in fair condition and about 2.500...3.500 € if it's a really fine one. Let's assume you find a good 2nd gen bike for 3.500 € cash. This means you will need at least 12 months (as Greg mentioned) to fix all the hidden surprizes. And after all that, it will have cost you about 7.000 € in total to have the „fine, well running and totally reliable bike“ that you wanted in the beginning. (Which means: After going through the bike completely, installing e. g. new tires, changing all fluids and so on. And replacing all the "usual culprit TR1 parts" that are broken after 40 years in most cases: exhaust, starter mechanism, cracked plastic parts, corroded cable harnesses, …)  And as soon as you have got your first riding impressions on the bike, you might also want to implement some personal modifications: Seat, handlebars, grips, mirrors, luggage rack, suspension, exhaust...

Again: I appreciate your passion for the TR1. Therefore I don't want to demoralize you. I just want to suggest: „Give your relationship to your upcoming TR1 bike a little while to develop properly.“ Because no 40 year old classic bike will be so kind to become a reliable commuter vehicle in the twinkling of an eye.

Puh - a lot of text so far. So, how to go on? Two proposals:

1) At the moment, a fine 2nd generation TR1 is offered here in northern Germany (about 80 km from my home):

Good condition (paint and so on). Mostly original. Only minor modifications (foot rests, handlebars) that could easily be rebuild. Asking price 4.000 € (not fixed). My offer to you, Evros: I could visit the seller and try to find out for you whether that bike (or another one according to your demands) could be a good and reliable deal for you. We could clarify further details via personal message. (This would of course be without any guarantee. As we all know: The 40 year old material can break down in an instant – even when having worked fine until yesterday.)

2) Maybe the next TR1 rally (in Waddeweitz/Germany in August 2023) could be a good opportunity to get your future bike prepared and fixed - by the knowledge and help of the rally visitors. My home is 70 km from Waddeweitz (where Tom/Popeye is located). So, maybe we could get your future bike to me or to Waddeweitz, give it a „full service“ there and preparing it either for shipping it to Cyprus. Or (even better of course) having it ready for your first TR1 journey (riding it from the rally in Germany to your home ;-) ).

Evros, I would be happy if I/we could help you to get exactly the bike that you can "fall in love with". So, let's see what we can organize until summer ;-).

See you,


Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by nanno on 28.02.23 at 08:39:31

Not a lot to add to this, aside from, I could offer you a testride on my daily TR1, which (quite humbly) is probably one of the best TR1s for this task as that's exactly what she did the last 3-4 years. Drive daily. That being said, you will not find one like this for sale, but I can point you at all the stuff that I addressed and that, if you intend to drive it on daily basis will most likely annoy you. And that's quite a lot.

If you have to have a mechanic fix those things, he simply won't do it, because he would probably not get what exactly you're after unless you do it yourself. (Also as you can see in some of my threads, this bike is literally the result of several years of ongoing "development" and fiddling...)

All of which means: Please, before just committing to a TR1, ride one... It's a lovely bike, but IMHO in stock condition, quite shite.

P.S.: There's an airport nearby.  ;)

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by hornschorsch on 01.03.23 at 09:59:16

Kroete wrote:
Klar, es steht auch jedem frei, sich anständig zu verhalten

Dann sei doch mal anstaendig und sei still. Dein Geschreibe ist unanständig und beleidigend blöde. Es gibt hier Vertragsfreiheit und es steht jedem frei etwas doch nicht zu verkaufen oder auf Anfragen nicht zu antworten.

Dieser Thread hier ist echt bald nicht mehr auszuhalten. Evros, oder was immer das ist was unter dem Namen hier schreibt, hat nun wirklich alle Tips der Welt bekommen, er sollte sich nun aufmachen oder jemand mit dem Geld schicken der ein Mopped für ihn kauft. DKProject hat ihm auch irgendwo geschrieben dass er dss Mopped wohl persönlich abholen muss wenn das was geben soll. Lass Du dir doch 4.000 EUR von Evros überweisen und kauf ihm damit eine TR1 und bring sie ihm nach Griechenland. Wie, keine Lust, zu aufwändig? Aber über Anbieter von Moppeds schimpfen die keine Lust haben auf komplizierte Verhandlungen in einer Fremdsprache mit einem ausländischen Käufer.

Evros kann schreiben was er will und versprechen dass er alles möglich offenlegen will, das kann alles gelogen sein. Nur ein Mann mit Geld in der Hand ist vertrauenswürdig.

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by popeye on 01.03.23 at 12:43:47

:oMan Georg,

sag mal, hast Du heute morgen wieder Bullenblut getrunken ? ? ?

Wenn Dir der Thread nicht (mehr) genehm ist, dann lies ihn doch einfach nicht.
Du kannst aber auch jeden hier vergraulen oder erst gar nicht ankommen lassen.

Junge, Junge


Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by hornschorsch on 01.03.23 at 13:30:02

Stimmt es denn nicht?

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Evripidis on 01.03.23 at 14:49:11

Hi all,

I write by my real name and surname which is pretty unique. You can check below:


I am available to present any legal documentation regarding proof of identity plus bank account details (even balances if anyone is worried).


Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Triwinger on 01.03.23 at 14:54:01

Hallo zusammen,

Schorsch, Du hast ja recht mit Deinem Hinweis, daß Evros viele Tips bekommen hat. Und ich bin auch zuversichtlich und sicher, daß er die beherzigen wird.

In meinem Beitrag hatte ich Euch ja schon berichtet, wie es mir erging, als ich die MT8 in Holland kaufen wollte: Als "Kaufinteressent aus dem Ausland" steht man dort erst mal ganz schön blöd da und muß gehörig um Vertrauen werben, um überhaupt erhört zu werden. Die Anbieter der Mopeds scheinen stets sehr besorgt zu sein, daß sie womöglich an einen "windigen" Käufer geraten. Andererseits habe ich ja nun selber die Erfahrung machen dürfen, daß auch auf der Verkäuferseite durchaus "Windigkeit" herrschen kann. Und wir alle kennen ja das Motiv, aus dem wir zuweilen unsere alten Fahrzeuge verkaufen: "Ach, die olle Karre lohnt nicht mehr. Mit der Reparatur soll sich getrost der künftige Besitzer rumplagen." Es ist also gar nicht mal böser Wille dabei.

Wir alle wissen doch: Niemand von uns ist perfekt. Muß also auch nicht jeder mit jedem können. Und so lange die passenden Deckelchen und Töpfchen zueinanderfinden, können wir da doch tolerant drüberstehen. Oder?


Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by hornschorsch on 02.03.23 at 13:46:34

Es geht ja nicht um Verkäufer die betrügen. Evros hat hier zwei Threads gleichzeitig am Laufen in denen er nach einer TR1 sucht, insbesondere in dem anderen Thread sagen ihm eigentlich alle Beteiligten dass das was er versucht wie Scam aussehen könnte und das er wahrscheinlich auf die Art wenig Erfolg haben wird:

Er hat nun alle technischen Tipps zur TR und alle Tipps zur Abwicklung des Kaufs bekommen, sogar Moppeds angeboten bekommen, aber er hat immer noch was und noch eine Ausrede.

Auch dass er hier nun Links von jemandes Firmenwebseite und Linkedin Profil postet, sagt nicht wirklich was aus, das kann auch Identitätsmissbrauch sein. Ich hatte mal so einen, der hat auf ebay in meinem Namen Computerzeugs verkauft, Geld kassiert aber nix verschickt, und ich hatte dann die geprellten Käufer und deren Anwälte am Hals.

Und jetzt kommt der Kröte daher und dann sollen die Anbieter, die kein Englisch können oder einer Anfrage aus dem Ausland nicht trauen, plötzlich Schuld sein. Aber Freund Kröte hat ja immer eine Art an sich, dass mir der Draht aus der Mütze springt. Vielleicht bin ich bald zu alt für so einen Scheiss.

Aber wie siehts aus, besorgt ihr beiden dem Evros eine TR1 und lasst sie bei euch abholen? Ihr könnt auch ruhig den Scheck über 10.000 annehmen und die Differenz von 5.000 dem Abholer in Bar mitgeben...

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Kroete on 02.03.23 at 14:46:15

Dieser Kröte stößt Dir jetzt hier ein letztes Mal Bescheid:

Es wäre fürs Klima im Forum förderlich, wenn Du anderen Leuten, die Du nicht kennst, nicht alles Mögliche unterstellst.
Das tut man nicht. Auch wenn Du jetzt daherkommen magst, ich kann sagen was ich will. Klar, kannst Dich nach Belieben daneben benehmen, aber dann lebe auch mit den Konsequenzen und motz nicht die anderen dafür an!

Probiere es mal mit Yoga und etwas Gelassenheit.

Du hast hier nicht das Monopol auf die Deutung anderer Mitglieder im Forum. Das ist eine Anmaßung.
Zumal wenn sie so misslingt.
Lies erstmal was die schreiben und denke drüber nach.
Und wenn Du nach drei Tagen immer noch was zu sagen hast, dann kannst Du das nach etwas Beruhigung auch in die Tastatur einhämmern.

Das hat auch nichts mit Alter und Scheiß zu tun, sondern mit grundsätzlicher Einstellung.

Dein pöbelndes Wiederholen suggeriert kein großes Reflektionsvermögen.

Aber dafür reden wir hier ja darüber.

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by hornschorsch on 02.03.23 at 15:22:23

Nun sag doch mal, hast du schon ein Mopped für den Evros angekauft? Wann kommt er es abhohlen?

Ich sage doch nicht dass der Ecvros zwingend ein Betrüger ist, es _kann_ aber für die Verkäufer so aussehen als ob. Und potentielle Verkäufer wie der Dirk haben ihm im anderen Thread gesagt, dass er wohl mit Geld kommen muss und das Mopped abholen. Das steht auch jedem Verkäufer frei und das habe ich neutral gesagt, da musst du nicht daherlabern, es stünde auch jedem frei sich anständig zu benehmen oder nicht und somit dem Dirk und evtl. auch mir unterstellen wir wären unanständig. Mit Konsequenzen drohst du dann auch noch...

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Kroete on 02.03.23 at 15:46:58

Die drei Tage sind noch nicht rum und was ich schrieb hat keine Synapse bei Dir erreicht.

Das ist erstmal Dein Problem. Dem Du Dich widmen kannst oder auch nicht. Ist mir ziemlich egal.

Soll ich jetzt auf Deine Frage eingehen, während Du meinen Text ignorierst?
Ich denke nein.

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by hornschorsch on 02.03.23 at 15:48:34

Pot? Kettle? Black?

Title: Re: [Buying a Used] - Things to look for.
Post by Manfred on 02.03.23 at 18:38:41

Thread closed! I'm sick of this useless and childish discussions! From both!

@Evripidis: Please open a new thread if there still are questions regarding your potential buy!