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Discussion Starter #1
Hello all. I've been looking at a 2003 Yamaha FZ1 (bumblebee) in my area with less than 1K original miles on it. The original owner is selling it, a guy with a collection of very expensive and well taken care of toys, all stored in his heated garage. The bike looks like it was just purchased, it is that mint. He wants about one grand over average retail than a bike with normal (much higher) mileage.

I've heard that older bikes with very low miles should be avoided because rubber seals may deteriorate due to lack of lubrication. Does anyone with mechanical experience know if I should stay away from the bike or not?

Thanks!
 

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Age and oxidation are what cause rubber seals to deteriorate, not a lack of lubrication. An intake boot, brake quad ring, or whatever, is no more likely to fail due to sitting then it is due to high miles over the same time. (In fact, sometimes the added heat over an extended period of miles can accelerate rubber damage.) If a rubber boot is going to harden and crack after ten years of sitting, it's going to harden and crack after ten years of riding.

Heating and cooling cycles can also cause gasket damage, and that's what happens with a bike that's sitting for long periods in a non climate controlled environment. And also one that's started and run and shut off. :) So if the bike was maintained and kept mostly in a heated garage, I'd say the seals and gaskets are likely in as good a shape as can be expected. Plus, the engine and other parts have thousands of miles of less wear then another bike which was ridden all that time.

My main concern would that the inside of the fuel system wasn't gunked up, or that the brake system didn't get water in it and cause internal corrosion.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Age and oxidation are what cause rubber seals to deteriorate, not a lack of lubrication. An intake boot, brake quad ring, or whatever, is no more likely to fail due to sitting then it is due to high miles over the same time. (In fact, sometimes the added heat over an extended period of miles can accelerate rubber damage.) If a rubber boot is going to harden and crack after ten years of sitting, it's going to harden and crack after ten years of riding.

Heating and cooling cycles can also cause gasket damage, and that's what happens with a bike that's sitting for long periods in a non climate controlled environment. And also one that's started and run and shut off. :) So if the bike was maintained and kept mostly in a heated garage, I'd say the seals and gaskets are likely in as good a shape as can be expected. Plus, the engine and other parts have thousands of miles of less wear then another bike which was ridden all that time.

My main concern would that the inside of the fuel system wasn't gunked up, or that the brake system didn't get water in it and cause internal corrosion.
Thanks, Angel...

As you probably know, that bike has carbs, so I guess I'll know how the fuel system is working if decide to see and test her out. Thanks again for the insight!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Bought the FZ1 today and took her home on a 2 hour trip. What a bike! Gonna have to used to a sport bike after years on a Harley. Not as comfortable, but it's sure fun. The bike is flawless. Got lucky.
 

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Congrats! I had a 2002 FZ1. One of the few bikes I regret selling. I used to love how the front end would come up at 60mph in first gear even with all my weight forward. And then when I'd shift into second at 70 it would touch down and bounce right back up! Be careful! It's a *****cat around town, but once the tach hits 7000 it's a rocket.
 

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Congrats! I had a 2002 FZ1. One of the few bikes I regret selling. I used to love how the front end would come up at 60mph in first gear even with all my weight forward. And then when I'd shift into second at 70 it would touch down and bounce right back up! Be careful! It's a *****cat around town, but once the tach hits 7000 it's a rocket.
Thanks! I'll be doing none of THAT though. 40 years ago, for sure. :)

The bike has go me a bit baffled. I'm not sure when it is or is not lugging, like with my Harley. I was keeping it around 4K rpm on a leisurely trip in 6th gear. It sounded and felt fine. Were my RPMs too low? I was shifting at about 4K in each gear. Any advice?
 

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It's been awhile since I owned the bike, but I seem to remember you could go pretty low in RPMs without it lugging. If it sounded and felt fine, you're probably okay.

You don't have to go too crazy, but make sure you get that tach over 7k now and then!:biggrin:
 
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