A really nice “Crosa” styled Yamaha TX500 Cafe Racer.

Dean Jarrett from Chicago sends in this amazingly transformed Yamaha.

My ’74 TX500 was a November 2010 craigslist find from Kenosha, WI about a half hour from me. The seller had it listed as a “yamaha 600″ …( It is bit embarrasing to say… I had to look at google images to find out what the heck it was ! ) So I went and drug it home for $200. It had good compression , a title, and less that 7k miles so I had found a good deal.

The build is of course a theme,,, if Yamaha made a replica of a late 60’s Itallian bike…… this is it. I am happy with the result.

It is Corsa red ( Lania racing red ) with stripes painted in white and black, then cleared. The head pipes were modified to keep the mufflers low , the upswept angle of the stock pipes was not vintage Itallian. The fuel tank is the garden variety vintage Benelli .

I made the custom seat cowl, seat pan, under seat electronic compartment ( to hide everything ) and the tach bucket and mount all from fiberglass.

Much of the wiring harness was modified ( and repaired ) .. most of the wiring is custom or relocated. The ingition key is on the underside of the seat. I used the stock tach, by making a custom face plate ( photo shopped and printed, used white lexan and a base ) relocated the oil light to where the TX rear brake wear sensor was within the tach face. The big tach is now front and center with no other guages or caution lights, everthing needed is in the tach (I have a bar mount for my little GPS as a speedo.) That is the stock 7″ headlight, lowered and mini bulb turn signals ( no led’s on the bike ).

I made the headlight tilt bracket , rear turn signal brackers, exhaust hangers, battery bracket, etc all from 1/2″ aluminium flat stock. I removed the un-needed brackets and tabs. The rear-set mounts and fuel tank brackets are all I had to weld on.

The engine is fairly stock spec, I bead blasted the cases and polished every cover. All new seals, gaskets and proper adjustment checks were done. I run the stock Keihin carbs , tuned for the uni-filters.

I restored most all of the nuts, bolts and hardware ( zinc plated ).

The 35mm forks and front brake are off my XS500 parts bike. The TX had only 34mm forks with a 10″ disc, now we have 35mm wih the 12” disc. I polished the fork lowers, before rebuilding. It has taperd roller bearings in the steering neck . That is a stock XS front fender (and my license plate is the rear fender)

The wheels are stock, I just “restored” them, new seals, bearings, some polishing and wrapped in Avon road riders ( love them). Bronze swing are bushings, rebuilt front claiper , new pads in front and shoes in back. The front master cyl is from Mike’s, almost as cheap as a rebuild kit so I also bought the clutch lever.

Did I mention all of the metal polishing?

Best, Dean

The before and after pics tell the story. A really fantastic build!  Lice and compact.  Nothing that’s not needed and very stylish.  Thanks for the pics!


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