Yamaha YSR50

So, basically I always wanted a Gag bike…… What is a Gag bike I hear you ask. Gag bikes are small capacity 3/4 size bikes built generally for the Japanese domestic market. As you regular readers will recall I am 6’6″ tall so I look an absolute idiot on one….. ho hum!!!

So I was looking out for a bike and I found one that was a decent price and wasn’t a complete wreck, but it was in Dundee (6 hours plus away from the HJP Garage) So enter stage left the bike courier.






The bike Courier did a cracking job and delivered the bike which was accepted by R-Bert as I was away in Barcelona (3 Day mini break!!!!) When I got back the bike was in R-bert’s garage so I nipped next door (Yes he lives next door to me!) to fetch it. Well first impressions is that it is truly small, though I don’t have any difficulties getting my feet up onto the pegs. My Girlfriend immediately claimed the bike as her’s as she is much smaller than me!!!


Looking round the bike the first thing that strikes you is the mismatched bodywork. This is the list of work that needs to be done:

  1. Repair the Fuel Tank – The tank is a bit religious, it’s a bit holey. The bottom of the tank had loads of pin holes and a couple of large holes and there were some pinholes in the side. I blasted the tank getting the bad layer of primer off so that the welder could see what state the tank was in, luckily he couldn’t see a problem and will be fixing it for me.
  2. Replace the Fuel Tap – The fuel tap is corroded right through, so will need replacing.
  3. There is no Air Box – There is no air filter at all, so I will be getting a pod filter for the carb.
  4. Funny noise from the front wheel – I think this noise is a broken speedo drive cable (Hopefully)
  5. Paintwork – The paintwork is an interesting mix of original tank (But with a layer of primer over it) pink and white top fairing and tail unit and grey side panels, this will all be going back to standard red and white as it looks so good.
  6. Handlebars are a bit wonky – Not sure what I am going to do with these, get new (Expensive), straighten originals (can be difficult) or replace with ally clip ons (Cheap and easy but not original)
  7. Hand grips are sticky and horrible – I will be replacing these
  8. Tail unit needs some work – The tail unit is one piece apart from the little hatch to access the battery. These go missing alot, they are very, very rare but mine has one, well sort of . Someone has made one out of aluminium and it is quite well made except it is flat and the rear is slightly curved so it doesn’t fit brilliantly, I think a little work and it will look a lot better. Also under the tailpiece there has been some repairs with the largest glob of fibre glass in the world, I think it has doubled the weight of the tailpiece. I will be removing the fibreglass and handing the unit to R-Bert and he will sort it all with plastic welding.
  9. Rear light and indicators – These have been homemade to mimic the JDM light cluster and it’s not a bad job but I want to tidy it up and use slightly different indicators as the ones on it are rounded at the end and I want squared off ends as they will be closer to JDM spec and look better.
  10. The Engine – I haven’t heard the bike run so that will be something I need to sort as the bike needs to run to get a MOT. I will set up an temporary petrol tank and try and get it going, I am hoping that it is all OK and good to go with minimal fiddling.
  11. The paperwork – This bike has been imported from Japan and therefore cannot be used int he UK until it is registered, taxed and MOT’ed. I can’t register it until it has an MOT and I can MOT it until it is roadworthy, so so work there. I also need something called the NOVA document which is basically proof it has been imported into the UK
  12. Front Forks – The forks aren’t leaking but they are quite rusty, I feel they might not be leaking due to a complete lack of oil in them. If I need to have non-rusty forks the only option will be to have them re-chromed as they no longer have them in stock……. anywhere!!!

About The Author


Ambitious Amateur Mechanic, with a slight (OK not slight) Suzuki bias