13th Dec 2008, 15:21
My neighbor and I both bought new 1978 XS1100s in 78. We now have approximately 35,000 miles on them. They still run like new and look like new. The only things we have replaced are tires, batteries and exhaust systems; one has a Kirker, the other a Hindle, both work great and are quiet.
When new we put on Vetter fairings and Bates rear boxes along with large tank bags. Can't imagine a better bike for touring. I think they will outlast us. If you can find a good clean, stock one for under $2000 snap it up, you won't be disappointed.
15th Jan 2010, 15:55
I seem to be with you guys about the 1100 being retard proof. I've been a 650 guy from the 70's first with my $50.00 dollar 66 Triumph (that I still have. It's in a few boxes but it's still with me), then after going to school for brit. cycle repair and going in the army in 77.
4 years later I got out and wanted to ride, and also needing a job, and with Triumph on their last legs, I got a job at the local Yam. shop.
Well while riding home one day after work, the service manager ripped passed my Triumph like it was nothing. Now you have to know that at one time this bike was giving them Harleys and KZ1000 a hard time, but that XS650 had no work for me.. Might as well been on grand pa's old cushmen..
So after talking it over with my brother, who at the time was on a 78 XS1100 RV, we went out and I got a really good deal on a 75 XS650. It was a true hot rod.. Well I still have that bike and also 4 others. But I guess what I'm getting at is the other day my brother (older) came by with the title for the 1100, and told me to go get it from the shop, because it just got the high end tune-up with new wheels, bearings and rubbers. so off I went. with the bill paid in full (thanks Bro.) I got on it and tried to ride it home. That was at 9:00am, but every time I got close to the house, it just kept going and I couldn't keep it off the big road.
You know for a 32 year old bike, it hasn't lost any of its spunk. It is bone stock with the hard bags and faring, and it don't even feel it.. no wind drag. And F.Y.I. I dug up a 1980 LTD 1100, and after pulling off the toll, he tried to give me a run with the come let's run wave, so after 30 years it was my turn. That Kawi. had nothing. I put him the weeds just at 5th gear. I've got no idea how fast I was going, but when I got off the twister I was rolling down off 122 (give or take) mph. The ride was just as smooth as my bosses 70 caddy.
Well on the return home I had a really hard time trying to keep it under 70. Seems that's its cruising speed. I've been spending a lot of time going over this bike more or less to get to know what keeps'er ticking. I am thinking about a spin on oil filter to help with helping it run a little more cooler. After all, clean, cool oil is key, and it is a 32 year old bike. And as long as I can keep out from under a bus, I'd like to see it here for another 32 years... it's a really fine bike and I'd put it along side any Moto-Guzzi or B.M.W. any day...
I'm Rich Davis (Yamaha-Richie) from South Jersey...
13th Feb 2012, 02:31
Just found a 78 for $700 on Craigslist. It runs and drives, just has some road rash, and needs virtually nothing. I rode one for a week, and I loved it, although it wasn't as clean as this one. I knew that one day I wanted one, and now with this I may chop it for the cafe look...
14th Apr 2015, 15:03
I am looking at a 1980 XS1100 Special with 50000 miles. Is that a lot of miles on one of these bikes?
7th Jun 2016, 05:20
I just picked up a complete 1979 Yamaha XS1100 for $250... Not running, but after tearing through the carbs it seems all I need is new tires and a battery and clutch cable... She's rough around the edges, but I'm sure she'll clean up nicely...
17th Dec 2016, 18:18
Bought a 1100e springtime, last tagged 1991, stored in the cellar since. 9,300 miles with a Yamaha fairing and bags. Throttle, brakes and clutch locked up. Engine did turn. Covered with boxes from a cluttered cellar helped protect this dusty rust free machine.
Soaked the carbs for three days in gasoline and slowly the varnish dissolved. Cleaned the carbs, replacing two leaking floats, bled the brakes, new battery, shook 24oz of rust from the tank after removing 2 gallons of orange gas. Tank leaked with many pin holes and the paint was 95%; being very protective I was able to line it, filling holes with same.
It started, runs amazing and is a beautiful survivor. Acceleration is over the top. Few stop and say "Good looking 750!" I shake my head and then they see the 4th cylinder, the eyes light up and I hear, Wow, an 1100!!
My other ride is a Harley 1450 which now feels like an elephant and is for sale.
This was a one owner bike, never abused, laid down one time caused by an oil spot at a toll booth.
The owner tried to give it away to the heater repair man and their plumber. I paid $300, they are happy and I am in heaven at age 71.
Polished most aluminum and I am a very proud owner looking to do it again.
Can it still bust 12 seconds in the quarter? Would like to hire a bike jockey for an attempt, any qualified prospects out there?
Need a long ride this spring as the last piece to confirm a successful BRING BACK TO LIFE!!
Maddox in Delaware.