In 1983 the Yahama XJ900 was introduced in Europe as a sporty touring motor. When Yamaha launched the XJ900, it was an instant success. The machines were followed up in 1994 by the Diversions. And they turned out so well.
Yamaha XJ900s are tough
But quite a lot of those early XJ900s are still driving around. Simply as a motorcycle. No hassle with more profitable insurance restrictions. To go. Throughout the year. Including vacations. Also that one with 162.000 km on the clock. Within the XJ club there is a specimen driving in the direction of the 4 ton.
The bottleneck of the XJ900 is the tank
The tank likes to rust, especially now with the alcoholic gasoline, at the bottom of the tank. This is because the fuel tap is not completely at the lowest point of the tank, so water can remain at the bottom of the tank. The tank will then rust from the inside. And that is not visible from the outside. Or only when it's too late.
Getting a second-hand tank is pretty hopeless because so many XJ drivers have to deal with this problem. New tanks can be purchased at your local Yamaha dealer or through CMSNL but very expensive. Think of something from € 700. And that is without a tap and cap and such.
Before purchasing, you could drain the carburetors
First shake the engine firmly. If you then keep a white cloth underneath, and brown material remains on that cloth, then you know that the tank is rusting. And may show gaps within the foreseeable future. Everything can be made of course. But remember that welding on gasoline tanks can not only cause leakage problems, but also explosions.
The suspension and damping
At the time that the XJ900 came on the market, there was already written in motorcycle magazines about the moderate suspension and damping. Certainly at the front. The standard front springs are too weak, hit regularly with a higher load (duo) and also do not contribute to good driving characteristics. This gets worse as the 100.000 km approaches.
In the meantime, most 900s will be equipped with, for example, WP suspension. Many people have also mounted behind other shock absorbers. They are often Hagons. This is also an improvement of the driving characteristics, but also of the comfort. Especially if you travel a lot with two people plus luggage.
Original exhausts will quickly rust from the inside with many short pieces of driving. You can see that because the chrome is bulging at certain points. If it goes further (a partition breaks off) then it is also audible. Something to keep in mind, because if you go for the original, then a new exhaust system also ticks firmly. For bends and dampers you have lost around € 600. The often rusted in-between pot costs around € 300.
You also have to check the case carefully at the collection bin (at the bottom of the block, where the four bends merge into two dampers). You can do this by carefully examining the case with a hammer or something for rust.
But in the meantime, the classic drivers are still at the price level of 'old motorcycles'. And you can take advantage of that. Consider amounts between € 1.200-2.000 for a neat copy. Oh yes: the XJ900 has cardan drive.
Knowing more? Just look up www.xj900club.nl
Rust from the inside. Not only with XJ900s