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Discussion Starter #1
Well I have been enjoying many hobbies over the years, and now it's time to get back into the one that started them all as a kid, motorcycling! Right now I have a 1986 Yamaha Radian in my garage in sad shape. It's all dirty and dusty and not running. It only has about 5000 miles on it. It was my dad's and he gave it to me. I rode it and put many batteries in it, but I'm sure now it won't start with a new one. I haven't tried though. I need to get this thing running this spring. It needs a mechanic to go over it thoroughly to make sure it's safe. The tires are original from 1986, and while I think if I get it running I can safely get to the shop at low speeds, they gotta be replaced even though they have plenty of tread left. Talking to a mechanic, he says DON'T JUST START IT! He says remove the plugs and then try just in case there is fuel or fluid in the cylinders. Good advice. Pretty sure the carbs need a rebuild and sync. It leaks oil, but I'm not going to rebuild the engine just cause it leaks a bit of oil. It's a beautiful standard style motorcycle with red metallic paint and the optional roll bars and mini fairing which are rare and sought after options on this model. When I did ride it years ago it caught attention everywhere it went. What else should I do before trying to start and ride it? I feel bad about neglecting the bike. My dad bought it when he turned 40 and I turned 40 a couple years ago and thought I would ride in on my birthday. It never happened.. Now is time to make it happen. My wife says I should sell it, but it was a gift from dad and I could never justify another motorcycle purchase at this time and a non-running bike is worthless. Help me get it running!
 

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When you have the plugs out squirt some light oil into the cylinders. Let it sit a few hours before you try to turn it over.

Does it have a kick start? use that to turn it over.
 

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Welcome to the forum.

Yup, squirting some light oil into the combustion chamber isn't a bad idea at all. Those cylinder walls haven't seen oil in a while. Leave the plugs out and run the starter or kick it over. That'll spread the oil about even more and blow any excess out the plug hole so you don't get hydraulic lock if you put too much in.

If you are mechanically inclined and intend to do much/some/all of the work yourself I cannot stress enough how essential it is to get a shop manual or two specific to the bike. If you can, a factory service manual, and at the very least a Clymer or a Haynes manual as specific as possible for it. I prefer Clymer to Haynes by a country mile.

If it is any consolation, I think you should keep that bike. It obviously has a great deal of sentimental value.

I dunno that I'd recommend riding the bike to a shop to have the tires changed. Do you have any mechanical our will you rely completely on a mechanic? Those tires have got to go. Tubes too, if it has them. If they're tubeless tires have new valves installed. If you're up to it, removing the wheels from the bike allows you to haul them to a shop and save a bit of labor.

Items I'd put on your shopping list would include but not be limited to all rubber items, like the tires, they'll be dry rotted. A new battery as you mentioned. These need to be brought into service correctly, failure to do so will shorten the life of the battery. Buying a Battery Tender or similar device to connect to the battery when you're not riding will also prolong battery life (check electrolyte level often).

New fuel lines, the old ones will be cracked and dried.

The control cables probably should be replaced also. They'll probably bind a fair bit after so many years sitting.

Hydraulic systems will need some work too. The brake fluid is probably not brake fluid anymore and the entire system will need to be cleaned. You'll probably need to have the caliper(s) and master cylinder(s) rebuilt.

The gas tank will need attention. If it was put up with any gas in it, it'll be pretty useless at this point in time. Dispose of it and clean the tank. Look for rust inside. That doesn't mean the tank can't be salvaged, but you're going to run through fuel filters like crazy if it isn't removed. Oh, put a fuel filter in your shopping list. The original one might be inside the tank where the petcock goes into it. After 25 years it may be a bear to get out. Ditch it and install an inline filter. The tank may also need to be lined. That is one of those attention to detail do it right the first time because once that job is done you've got a load of material inside the tank that isn't going to want to let go.

I'd recommend two oil changes in the near future. One now and one after you've ridden the bike for a few miles and the new oil has had a chance to get everywhere. Some may feel this isn't necessary.

The forks will need to be rebuilt or at the very least have the fluid changed. Removing the swing arm to clean and grease the swingarm bushing/bearings is also justified. When the wheels are off is a good time to tackle this job.

25 years of sitting probably hasn't been too kind to electrical connections. If the battery was left in it you may find a bit of corrosion on the terminals and may need to cut them off and put new ones on. There will be a boat load of connections in the bike. Each one should be inspected as these like to corrode. If you're fortunate a bit of spray cleaner for electric switches may get the job done. This really takes very little mechanical ability, don't just start pulling stuff apart because you'll have a bowl of spaghetti you need to put back together and that can be daunting. Especially if you don't have a wiring diagram. If you're not prepared to do some soldering leave this to a mechanic. Just pull them apart one at a time, give 'em a squirt of contact cleaner, then shove 'em back together, pull 'em apart, do this multiple times to help clean them, and wipe them off. Apply some dielectric grease and reconnect. Move on to the next one.

Systematically work your way from the back of the bike hitting all the connections along the way. Most will be bullet connectors but some will be multi pin ones. Get a hand lens when you uncouple these and a good light. Spray them liberally and then reconnect/disconnect/reconnect/disconnect (do this for the bullet connectors too, it helps clear off some of the garbage. Try to get a good look down inside at the male and female ends. These aren't as easy to inspect as the bullet style ones but they can have each individual connector removed if necessary. They're locked in with a little tab, a paper clip unfolded is handy for freeing them from their home. I believe you can get replacement pieces but if not and if corrosion is bad enough to scrap the connections you may end up needing to do some soldering.

The negative lead from the battery will need to have the other end looked at. It should be disconnected and the surfaces should be cleaned of any corrosion.

Anyway you look at it, 25 years is a long time for a bike to sit. A good solid going over should be done. If you can do all or some of it you'll save a fair bit of cash. Sorry for the long boring post but you've got your work cut out for you.
 

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Good luck on your project.
 

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i have the same bike... these things are known to have bad float valves in the carbs and bad fuel petcocks, which leads to crap tons of gas in the oil. another thing to watch for in any old bike is a rusty gas tank. also the valve covers love to leak oil on these, just make sure you replace the valve cover bolt grommets as well, as they are what keeps the valve cover down tight! fork seals are pretty easy if youre good with tools... but you will have to make a tool for the job. for parts, there is a guy named derek and owns a company in california called moto-lab.com. i dont know why, but he specializes in these bikes. great bikes once you get them running right.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks for the posts guys. It has not been sitting 25 years, maybe about 4 years. I will definitely pull the plugs and put some oil in there and turn it over without plugs. Will probably change the old before I do anything. There is probably gas and water in the oil. Already planning on having the carbs rebuilt once I get it to a shop. Tires are tubeless, will be replaced ASAP as well as the valve stems. And many years ago the tank was coated inside so I don't expect it to be so bad, but new fuel lines and filters are probably in order. I will have the mechanic check the cables and most importantly, bleed the front hydraulic brakes and make sure they are safe.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Where's the "edit post" button?

Things like fork seals and other systems, we'll have to wait and see, Trying to keep this under a grand for now. There's no end to what can be worked on with a bike this old. I don't think the forks will fall off but leaking and underdamped is a safety issue as well. I have a valve cover gasket NIP around here somewhere. I need a helmet for my 10 year old son. And I can wire and solder just fine, that stuff doesn't scare me. My other hobby is radio control models, aircraft, cars, boats, so I'm used to wrenching, on small stuff anyway. The big stuff I always have problems with cause there is always a bolt I can't remove.

Now, this bike has an aftermarket oil cooler from one of the major brands, it was bought from Dennis Kirk in '88 when the bike was brand new (leftover from '86). I plan to replace those oil lines, but of some concern is the adaptor which goes between the lower engine case and the oil filter. It has a large O-ring. I will inspect it and if it feels solid and hard and has no cracking it should be good, but I would like to replace it anyway. Finding it may be a problem, but I'm sure it's a size that can be ordered from somewhere. The oil cooler is a must to retain for hot summers. Those inner cylinders really overheat on the older air cooled bikes.

The seat was always worthless for anything over an hour ride. IT just plain gets painful. I will look for a used seat shell somewhere and maybe send it off to one of those companies that custom makes seats that are comfortable. I can't bear to modify the stock seat since it's in PERFECT factory new shape. I need to get some pics on here. Maybe I can migrate some of these posts to an appropriate thread later on so it's categorized properly as a bike rebuild thread. But this works until I actually get started on the project. But this weekend, I'm going to the field to fly my model airplanes and helicopters! Hey, I need an RC bike!
 

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Where's the "edit post" button?
]

T'ain't one. Just edit it to death instead. Oh crap, see what Critter said and ignore this part of my reply. I'm not a total eejit, honest.





Things like fork seals and other systems, we'll have to wait and see, Trying to keep this under a grand for now. There's no end to what can be worked on with a bike this old. I don't think the forks will fall off but leaking and underdamped is a safety issue as well.
If the bike has been inside the forks themselves may be in good shape, so new fluid and seals may all you need. Like you say, that waits until you've got the more serious stuff sorted.



I have a valve cover gasket NIP around here somewhere.
A part you won't need to buy unless you can't find that one. I guarantee that if you give up on finding it and buy another, you'll get hit on the head when it falls out of the sky.



I need a helmet for my 10 year old son. And I can wire and solder just fine, that stuff doesn't scare me. My other hobby is radio control models, aircraft, cars, boats, so I'm used to wrenching, on small stuff anyway.
Nice diversions for when the wrenching on the bike hits the occasional brick wall.



The big stuff I always have problems with cause there is always a bolt I can't remove.
Every one has their favorite stuck nut solvent. I like Kroil. If it still available. I got it by phone order from a company in/near Nashville TN after someone gave me a can of it long ago. So long that I can't give credit where credit is due. I've got a friend with an auto shop that turned me onto a detail spray aerosol that is some useful stuff and I'll find the name later. It does a killer job of making car windows that bind rolling up or down move smoothly when sprayed on the seal in the door. I found out last weekend the stuff is killer for mounting tires. But use it sparingly.




Now, this bike has an aftermarket oil cooler from one of the major brands, it was bought from Dennis Kirk in '88 when the bike was brand new (leftover from '86). I plan to replace those oil lines, but of some concern is the adaptor which goes between the lower engine case and the oil filter. It has a large O-ring. I will inspect it and if it feels solid and hard and has no cracking it should be good, but I would like to replace it anyway. Finding it may be a problem, but I'm sure it's a size that can be ordered from somewhere. The oil cooler is a must to retain for hot summers. Those inner cylinders really overheat on the older air cooled bikes.
I had a look at the fiche. That looks like the same general set up as an SOHC Honda 750. I've got an old Lockhart cooler on mine. That kit consisted of a length of hose, some hose clamps, zip ties, and a round plate that had two fittings on it for the hoses going to/from the cooler that is mounted higher on the down tubes below the steering neck. There is an O-ring between the plate and the crank case that came with the kit. IIRC, the O-ring that goes on the air filter housing and supplied with the air filter is the exact same size. Looking at the fiche that seems to be what I'd expect with your bike.

The seat was always worthless for anything over an hour ride. IT just plain gets painful. I will look for a used seat shell somewhere and maybe send it off to one of those companies that custom makes seats that are comfortable. I can't bear to modify the stock seat since it's in PERFECT factory new shape. I need to get some pics on here. Maybe I can migrate some of these posts to an appropriate thread later on so it's categorized properly as a bike rebuild thread. But this works until I actually get started on the project. But this weekend, I'm going to the field to fly my model airplanes and helicopters! Hey, I need an RC bike!

You may be able to get the foam replaced on the stock seat without wrecking the cover. I highly recommend Sargent. I've had a couple seats redone by them and I'm 100% satisfied.

http://http://www.sargentcycle.com/
 

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You have to have a certain number of posts before the edit button shows up. Even then you only have something like 15 minutes to edit a post.
 

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You have to have a certain number of posts before the edit button shows up. Even then you only have something like 15 minutes to edit a post.
I'm senile! I read that as the delete button. D'oh!

I didn't realize there was a time limit on the delete button. errr, uhh, I mean edit button. Told you I was senile.
 

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There isn't a delete button that I have found. The 'edit' button disappears after a while. I'm not sure how long it sticks around,
 

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There isn't a delete button that I have found. The 'edit' button disappears after a while. I'm not sure how long it sticks around,
I learned the delete button didn't exist, yesterday I think. Now you've explained why I only see the edit button on some posts and not others. Ya learns something new every day. :71baldboy:
 

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you sure the large oring for the oil cooler adapter isnt the same as a oil filter housing adapter? i have a fz600 oil cooler on mine and both orings are the same... buy an extra oil filter for $5 at advance auto and save paying $25 from somewhere else.
 

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you sure the large oring for the oil cooler adapter isnt the same as a oil filter housing adapter? i have a fz600 oil cooler on mine and both orings are the same... buy an extra oil filter for $5 at advance auto and save paying $25 from somewhere else.
A look at the fiche for this bike makes that look like the best solution.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Never thought of that. They might be the same. FZ600 is the same motor. Advance auto has the filter and o-ring?
 
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