5th Jul 2008, 17:17

I wouldn't think that is normal - have the steering head checked.

7th Jul 2008, 11:20

Great thread!

I am replying to AA from 22 May 2008:

Your question - When I am fixing second gear, should I just go ahead and rebuild the engine?

My answer - My understanding is that fixing the second gear issue takes a lot of tearing down to do. If you already have the engine out of the bike and in several pieces, why not? It's just a little bit more work to do and you will have a beautiful, clean engine. Good luck and have fun :)


BTW - I just bought an 82 Maxim for my husband to learn on. After cleaning the carbs and riding it for awhile, I am certain that I will sell my newer bike and keep the old Maxim. The only problem is that I feel my legs are too long for this bike. Does anyone know of a good conversion kit for forward controls?

Ride Safe.

15th Jul 2008, 21:54

Hey, so along with every single other comment on this page, I bought the 1982 XJ650 Maxim for $950 17,000 miles, with the only problem being a small dent in the gas tank, which I honestly don't think it's worth buying a new one for it.

Does anyone know where I can get new emblems for the tank, as well as the front beneath the headlight? The only thing I see on the Internet is wanting like $50 for a piece of painted plastic.

The rims that come stock on the bike are absolutely amazing, I love the black steel look with the stainless showing, it's beautiful. Also, the bike I bought had a Vance & Hines exhaust and you can hear a wizz from the headers, which honestly sounds like a turbo. painted the exhaust and headers up and about 30 hours of polishing the chrome, waxing the tank, and polishing every square inch of the bike (hey, if you're gonna own something, you want it to look as nice as possible). Now that I did all this, the bike looks like new besides the dent in the tank where it looks like some jack@$$ on the assembly line took his hammer and tapped the black gas tank.

There is a slight oil leak, but it only shows up when I drive 30 minutes or more when the oil gets thinned out, no biggie.

TIP: if you have a slight tear in the vinyl seat, what I found to work better to repair it isn't a vinyl repair kit, those things suck, but use a GEL SUPERGLUE, and hold it together for a few minutes. It works great, the seat looks like new now, no joke.

I just wanna show this bike off now, I love the style and how comfortable it is. If anyone wants to see a picture post your email address and I'll email you one. This site needs a picture link, I'd like to see what other people have done with theirs.

20th Jul 2008, 13:10

Like everyone here, I just bought a 1982 Yam 650, it is my first bike after my mini dirt bike as a kid. I love it! What a great bike to learn on!

Mine is also missing the emblems on the gas tank. but it doesn't bother me. I am wondering does it have a fifth gear?!?!?! Or can I just not count that high?

22nd Jul 2008, 21:42

Yeah, it does have a 5th gear, and it is a great bike. Easy to handle and rides fairly smooth. I've ridden the older Harleys before the rubber engine mounting system they now have, and it's a lot more fun to ride and a lot easier to handle because it doesn't vibrate you off the bike.

Speed is great on it, even for being an 82. Put a performance exhaust like the post 2 above (Vance and Hines), and man it whistles like a supercharger when you gun it.

Is there anyway to get the age wear/spots (like the aluminum color variations) off besides just trying aluminum polish? And is there an easier way to clean the black powder coated rims without leaving white water spots? Any feedback would be great.

I tried that gel superglue, and it really does work on small rips in the seams of the seat.

29th Jul 2008, 19:45

Again, like everyone else, I have an 81 Maxim 650. It has been sitting for a couple years and I think the pistons have seized up. It's got plenty of juice when I push the starter. You can hear the starter trying to turn it over. Popped a spark plug out and 'gently' stuck a screwdriver in to see if I got a push from the piston at all. Nothing. Anyone know an easy way to free em up without yanking the whole engine apart?

This bike definitely needs some TLC, and it's a sweet ride, so I'm trying to get her back to her grand and on the road. If you could post your ideas on here or email em to me at cbenj@charter.net. Thanks.

9th Aug 2008, 05:54

Just bought an '82 650 Maxim as a first bike. I'm about 90% in love.

My question is, it feels like I don't have a lot of low-end power. If I rev to 2000-3000 and then put it in first gear, it takes a while to get up to speed. Sometimes, I have to clutch again just to let the engine pick up. Once I break through 3000-4000RPM, then the bike has all the power I wanted and a few horses beyond that.

Is this normal?

Also, has anybody replaced the stock 'baby apes' with a lower and straighter handlebar? I'm not looking for a cafe bar, but something a little lower and straighter might be a better fit for me. Thoughts?


12th Aug 2008, 18:20


Could be that your clutch needs adjusting, my Maxim has lots of low end power, clutch could be slipping.


14th Aug 2008, 07:41

Hi all. It seems that most of us here are new to Maxims, so I hope that somebody here has gone through this process and would be willing to help.

My tank has a few scratches and dings - it is an 82 stock red model - and I was wondering where a person could get some touch up paint. I do not want to repaint my whole bike for a couple of dings. Any replies would be great.

I can be emailed at godogz@yahoo.com. Thank you in advance.

14th Aug 2008, 09:44

Great XJ650 site. Read all comments and some very helpful, BUT there is no fuel pump in the gas tank as stated awhile back or anywhere on these bikes. It's all gravity/vacuum with a 2 level drain, one for ON the other for RES. Been inside tank twice to re-coat interior for corner leaks. H2O the culprit there. Coat with Cream product inside and JB weld or resin outside.

These bikes normally very reliable, though a stuck starter motor was a recent problem of mine. Tapped it with mallet and works again :).

Have had 2 of these Maxims for over 100,000 miles combined. Traded one for an 1100 but went back to the 650 after 50,000+ miles. More nimble, less power but safer, ha!

"Live to Ride" John B.