1981 Yamaha XV1000/TR1 from New Zealand


One of the best-kept and underrated secrets, of the Japanese bike industry


Starter-motor needed rebuilding.

General Comments:

Next best thing to my old 750 GT Ducati (74), to ride. Chain a pain to tension/replace. Otherwise, just the usual maintenance of an older bike. So easy to customise to any style (and back).

Only thing I would change, is the mags, to wires (for looks) one day... Already changed to 38mm flat-slides, mildly ported-heads and custom exhaust. It should outlast me.

Would you buy another motorcycle from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 8th October, 2019

1981 Yamaha XV1000/TR1 from Australia


It has served me well for 37 years


Enclosed chain rear seal.

General Comments:

Great bike to ride. Comfortable and great grunt, so no effort or screaming motor to get action when required.

Regular inspection and cleaning of the bike and adjustments meant great reliability.

Purchased the bike in October 81 and rode to Perth W.A. from Brisbane QLD in 2.5 days; long hours in the saddle only stopping for fuel and tucker or a nap. Some cramping in my upper thighs led to me purchasing after market highway pegs for my return to Brisbane 2 weeks later with 11500km on the clock.

Used the bike in all manner of terrain and it was awesome on gravel roads; maybe the low centre of gravity.

Original pipes with that balance box rusted out in 2 years, so fitted an after market set and they are still on the bike.

Original chain and sprockets are still fitted. The enclosed chain in grease has certainly paid off.

Would you buy another motorcycle from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 14th May, 2018

1984 Yamaha XV1000/TR1 from Canada


I doubt I'll ever have a bike I love as much as this one


Valves out of adjustment.

Rear tire.

Fork seals.


General Comments:

The valves, rear tire and fork seals were all in need of service when I first looked at it on the dealer's lot.

I fell in love with this bike at first glance. That burgundy paint, that gold chrome, the Corbin seat.

I actually bought it without even test riding it! And then on the way home I cracked the throttle, felt the power, heard that V-Twin growl, and I smiled.

I remembered seeing these bikes on the showroom floor back in 84 and drooling over them, but I couldn't afford one at that time.

I had all the service done before I left the lot with it, and then for the next 3 years, all I did was change oil and put in gas.

I loved this bike. I would get all kinds of comments about how it shined in the sun. That was because I put serious polish time in on it every weekend. It was worth it.

It all ended a few years later when a guy in a mini van decided he really needed gas bad, and cut across my lane to get to those gas pumps. I was broken a bit, but my bike was broken bad.

I miss it.

Still, not the most comfortable beast. I'm a pretty big guy, so by the time the tank started to run dry at 170 Kms, I was ready for a leg stretch anyway.

That said, if I ever get the chance to own another one, I will.

Would you buy another motorcycle from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 3rd November, 2011

5th Apr 2018, 17:31

"Would", not Will.

I bought it new in 84. Drove it for a year including a round Europe tour which was 7500km done, in the end. Never once gave me discomfort. Fast and furious. Out-paced any sports car or comer owner. Left them standing. Mine was normal chromed and British racing green. Fabulous bike.

1981 Yamaha XV1000/TR1 from Australia


The Volatile Vibrator


Enclosed chain drive was not that good of an idea, hard to check for correct chain tension and wear etc. so I removed it and modified it back to normal.

Starter motor will always be a problem, so get a good one; you can replace the pins in the centrifugal clutch part of the starter if you can find some, and cut them down to the right size, as I have done in the past.

Rear pot will wear quicker than the front due to heat and low oil pressure. I suggest putting an oil pressure gauge on and keeping an eye on it.

General Comments:

I have owned and ridden this bike over 100,000km, and it still keeps me very satisfied as far as great torque, fantastic in those big sweeping corners, and can keep up with the best of them in the tight stuff.

This bike was nicknamed The Volatile Vibrator, and rightfully so, but once you get used to its vibes, it's not a problem.

These bikes are getting on now, and if you were to want to keep one, then I suggest you collect spares as there are not many good ones left, and you will need them for future engine rebuilds and so on.

Carbie diaphragm is no longer available, nor is the starter motor through Yamaha.

Would you buy another motorcycle from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 1st May, 2010

10th Jan 2013, 02:22

Hi, I just read this review and I would like to share. I have just received 4 diaphragms from a business in the USA.

31st May 2015, 08:28

Hi, what was the name of the outfit, that had the diaphragms? Thanks, Dave.

19th Nov 2021, 21:42

You can now buy new carb diaphragms; a few suppliers in US and this site was offering them: [https://www.motorcycleid.com](https://www.motorcycleid.com). Virago 1100 long-shaft (4-brush) starters are a direct fit and available. The chain-drive touring-roadster starters, are often confused with the early 750 Virago-cruiser starters, which are different bikes and starters (diabolical at times). If you can't afford an old 70's/80's Ducati, buy a good TR1, XV1000 or the smaller 920. Great machines!