The Garage

Endurance racing

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Yamaha FJR1300 - UK tourer!



The FJR has been in a "park for 4 months, use for 1 month, park..." cycle ever since the last entry here! However it has been 100% fine, even without any battery maintenance. I did about a year or so ago replace a couple of the bearings in the swingarm linkage as the previous MOT had an "advisory" that they had a bit of play. I also replaced the steel water pipe on top of the cam cover as the old one was rusty as hell and I didn't like it. Also it's had a couple of new sets of tyres!

I did do the valve clearances also when I replaced the water pipe, but they weren't much out, only around 3 needed touching. The FJR is now at about 75k miles.


Treated the FJR to a Lithium battery about 12 months ago, based on my experience with them in Dubai and up to now it’s been fine, even at sub-zero temps. I hopefully will have time when next in UK to check the rear shock linkage and do valve clearances. 


FJR didn’t start on my xmas visit to UK!! -I suspect due to naff connection on the battery maintainer. It cranked but didn’t fire properly, so had to leave it. At end of my visit when I came back to it (after checking out charger connection) it started/ran fine. Annoying!  Now have parts needed to do the valve clearances next time I’m in UK.


Changed all brake pads, changed the oil, replaced air filter, greased the rear shaft drive splines and UJ. Replaced rear shock with a Hagon with remote preload adjustment, (the old one was shot, after about 70k miles). Replaced all plugs with NGK CR8EIX, installed Healtech quickshifter, then took the old girl a few 1000 km's across France to the Bol D’Or… behaved perfectly as usual!


Changed battery 4 months back to a Lithium, forgot to update the page. Seems fine even in sub-zero temps. Replaced the missing visor panel as well.


In UK, retrieved bike, rear tyre has slow puncture, changed them both anyway. Managed somehow to “lose” one fairing ‘side visor’ as Yamaha call them, have to find another..!  Otherwise, nothing to report.


In UK, retrieved the bike and it fired right up, then spent past 3 weeks zigzagging around the country, it behaved perfectly as usual, even the tyres were only about 3PSI down, and still not worn out!  Poor thing got zero maintenance, but next time I’m in UK I will treat it to some! Would like to get a real Yam rear topbox for it instead of the Givi.


Back after 5000+ Km around France, Italy, Austria, Germany.. The FJR behaved very well, a very good touring tool, and not so slow either, it hit around 145mph... I didn’t even check the oil...  Avons about half worn by the trip, I’d say, which is pretty good, plus they never gave me any ‘moments’, and I did manage to use most of the tyre width! Rear brake feels like it needs bleeding, but it’s trivial. Also one headlamp bulb failed on the way back across France, it’s changed now (actually I changed both) and they are a real pain to get at & change, buried in the fairing. I did notice that the suspension is “off” in that the rear is much softer (spring rate) that the front, even on max preload and with only me.  It’s no disaster, but it’s annoying. I will try adjustments but I doubt I could even it all up, by the feel of it.  The Airhawk seat also worked well, allowed me to sit on the thing almost all day with little bum ache!! :) The power screen is very useful if you are driving in rain or if you just feel like a rest, plus the heated grips were great on a cold morning or in rain! The Yamaha luggage was also good with good quality & design.


Fitted with new brake pads all round and 2 new Avon tyres, I’m not familiar with Avons but they were available and apparently well liked by touring bike users. Also bought an Airhawk air seat for the long trip around Europe that is in the works. The luggage stuff is all already there!


Bought the FJR from a dealer in Doncaster, not my usual way, but it was a good deal. It’s in pretty good order for a bike thats run about 50k miles, hardly a mark on it.  It’s totally standard, apart from an added charger socket, and an aftermarket Givi rear topbox, which is a bit tatty, but all there.