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Author Topic: 1981 Yamaha XS 400 Special II Cafe Racer build  (Read 40310 times)

Offline riotten22

  • Posts: 162
1981 Yamaha XS 400 Special II Cafe Racer build
« on: Dec 18, 2011, 20:25:59 »
Picked up my next project: 1981 Yamaha XS400 Special II. Stay tuned for poject build updates. Not much out there for xs400 cafe bikes so this one should be interesting. Thinking a Benjies Dolphin seat / tank combo that is for an xs 650. I have read that the xs650 tank should fit the xs400.  If anyone has some quality xs400 cafe pics feel free to share.





Offline RoadRash

  • Posts: 554
Re: 1981 Yamaha XS 400 Special II Cafe Racer build
« Reply #1 on: Dec 19, 2011, 21:28:45 »
Nice snag!  Couldn't be any more difficult than turning an XJ650 Maxim into a cafe, like I did!  yours is a very solid base to work with.  Good luck and keep the pics coming!

Offline frankenrat

  • Posts: 11
Re: 1981 Yamaha XS 400 Special II Cafe Racer build
« Reply #2 on: Dec 19, 2011, 22:01:14 »
Quite a lot of good ideas at XS400.com

Offline riotten22

  • Posts: 162
Re: 1981 Yamaha XS 400 Special II Cafe Racer build
« Reply #3 on: Dec 20, 2011, 08:55:52 »
Definitely was a decent deal picked that up for $400. Ordered up a benjies Dolphin Tank and Seat combo, Now i have to play the waiting game, they said they are about 7 weeks behind.  Oh well i have plenty of other stuff to do :)

Offline two-smoker

  • Posts: 994
  • I reject your reality, and substitute my own!
Re: 1981 Yamaha XS 400 Special II Cafe Racer build
« Reply #4 on: Dec 20, 2011, 22:22:27 »
Well, the drum front brake with spoked wheels helps with the looks... (I seriously hate Yamaha mags)... you just slap on some new bodywork, fit rearsets and clipons, and voila! Instant cafe racer.
"I suppose I'd say.... BOLLOCKS! But that's pretty much a reflex for me...."
1973 Yamaha TX500- project Shinjimei

2010 Hyosung GT250R

Offline riotten22

  • Posts: 162
Re: 1981 Yamaha XS 400 Special II Cafe Racer build
« Reply #5 on: Jan 01, 2012, 22:47:56 »
Status update:

Detabbing complete, Installed fork boots and adjustable clipons. Waiting on tank/seat so i can fab up the U frame in the back and start mounting the electronics.  In the meantime i think i am going to tackle delacing the spokes on my wheels. That looks like a pretty daunting task not so much taking them off but getting them back together... Going to powder coat the rims black and leave the spokes and drums polished.




Offline Ryanh

  • Posts: 62
1981 Yamaha XS 400 Special II Cafe Racer build
« Reply #6 on: Jan 02, 2012, 10:18:05 »
Got any pics of the tank/seat combo you bought?

Offline riotten22

  • Posts: 162
Re: 1981 Yamaha XS 400 Special II Cafe Racer build
« Reply #7 on: Jan 02, 2012, 14:56:36 »
Got any pics of the tank/seat combo you bought?

I am still waiting for benjies to make it , hopefully it will be ready by the end of January

Offline Ryanh

  • Posts: 62
1981 Yamaha XS 400 Special II Cafe Racer build
« Reply #8 on: Jan 02, 2012, 15:06:20 »
Is it a one off?

Offline riotten22

  • Posts: 162
Re: 1981 Yamaha XS 400 Special II Cafe Racer build
« Reply #9 on: Jan 02, 2012, 15:54:46 »
Is it a one off?

It is the Dolphin Combo they make for the Honda CBs but setup for a Yamaha XS650. (they can make most of their tanks for the xs650 upon request and a little extra cash, the combo set with tank, fiberglass seat pan with upholstered seat, tail light, license plate bracket, 2 petcocks and fuel cap is going to cost me $950 + shipping) Supposedly an xs650 tank will mount up to my xs400 per some internet searching so I am hoping it wil be pretty much bolt on for the tank and the normal fabricating for the seat.

Offline riotten22

  • Posts: 162
Re: 1981 Yamaha XS 400 Special II Cafe Racer build
« Reply #10 on: Jan 04, 2012, 00:24:21 »
Wheels and springs are headed to the powder coater tomorrow for some black.  Ordered some expensive tires today... saw these on a Honda CB and they looked amazing ! hope they look as good on the XS

http://www.summitracing.com/parts/COK-72222/
http://www.summitracing.com/parts/COK-72225/

Offline Ryanh

  • Posts: 62
1981 Yamaha XS 400 Special II Cafe Racer build
« Reply #11 on: Jan 04, 2012, 08:46:08 »
Those are the tires I plan to use as well, for my front anyway, undecided for the rear...

950 isnt too bad I looked at getting a replica rd400 tank made and it was going to cost 650 for just a tank...

Offline riotten22

  • Posts: 162
Re: 1981 Yamaha XS 400 Special II Cafe Racer build
« Reply #12 on: Jan 14, 2012, 21:03:25 »
Not to much new to report, I am going to start working on a custom exhaust once I get my Pipe Bender in next week. Hopefully my seat and tank are getting close 3 more weeks supposedly.  Here is a link to my build parts list / build cost spreadsheet:

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0AidaLJ6RuAFcdG9jYkI3X0FNaGxVN0FOaDQ4SlNUVnc&authkey=CObU6IcH

Offline riotten22

  • Posts: 162
Re: 1981 Yamaha XS 400 Special II Cafe Racer build
« Reply #13 on: Jan 23, 2012, 09:24:37 »
Got my rims back from powder coating, between cleaning an polishing 72 spokes and relacing them I dont know if it was worth it, what a PITA !


Offline Weezy

  • Posts: 233
  • The Impatient Perfectionist!
Re: 1981 Yamaha XS 400 Special II Cafe Racer build
« Reply #14 on: Jan 23, 2012, 16:39:21 »
Go check out XS400.com. there are some nice cafe's over there. I'm envious of your spoked rims, I'd love to find a set. ;D
 I hope your right about the xs650 tank fitting. I had read that the xs750 would be a straight fit but it is not. It seems Yamaha likes to change whch side has the rubber puck and which has the cup from model to model. Now my frame and xs750 tank booth have cups. I'll have to fab a puck mount to my frame. Also the xs400 tank has a wider tunnel than the xs750. I had to widen the XS750 tank with a hammer to make it fit over the frame. Hopefully this is not the case with the 650.
Your bike is looking good  :) i'll have to follow this one.
« Last Edit: Jan 25, 2012, 00:01:23 by Weezy »