Yamaha Starbike Forum banner

1 - 10 of 10 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,665 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Looking at a low mileage 2000 Road Star purchase from the original owner.

When the dealer did the transmission spring clip recall they 'suggested' they could upgrade the engine with hi compression pistons in the process (for a price).

Googling this a bit it appears yamaha did this to offset the cost of the recall where they could.

I asked the seller if he runs hi octane gas in the bike, and he said no.

?!

Im confused on this: why put hi compression cylinders in an engine, and then back off the timing so the bike does not ping on regular octane gas? You are firing the ignition before the piston reaches it hi compression point, so I would think you would have no increase in HP with your $500+ piston modification.

Other that this, it sounds like a good bike.

Where is Paul Harvey with the rest of the story when you need him?

Is this something that was commonly done when the transmission recall was implemented: putting in new hi compression pistons/cylinders, but setting up the bike to run on regular fuel?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
251 Posts
When I purchased my second Roadstar, I had no idea it had high compression pistons installed. I asked the previous owner about mods and he never mentioned it. The bike did not run as well as my stock Roadstar, since I used the recommended regular gas. I had a lot of pinging. There was no record of the recall being done, so when the cases were split I was informed about the HC pistons. I switched to premium and switched the dynatek module timing and the bike ran much better. I did have to play a lot with the timing to get it just right. IMO there really isn't a significant issue between the two bikes regarding power. I actually think the stock bike runs better although I have an aftermarket exhaust and air cleaner on that bike as well. I will say the bike with HC pistons runs hotter and burns more oil. My stock Roadstar doesn't burn any oil between changes.

I don't think there was any offset cost savings to Yamaha in doing this...only a cost savings to the owner and of course money for the shop. I don't believe it was a wide spread suggestion, which came from a shop not Yamaha, but anyone considering the upgrade would certainly benefit with the timing of the recall. Back when these bikes were very popular, relatively few switched to HC pistons. I don't remember any discussions of running regular gas. I think some that did the upgrade didn't know anything about the upgrade other than they would get more power and didn't understand what was going on.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,073 Posts
I have a 2000 and this is the 1st I've heard of the Hi-comp pistons. So take my view with a grain of salt. And I am not aware of my bike having them installed.

To it does not make sense to do the mod, if you are not going to full advantage of it. Although, with used bikes, knowledge of previous owner's mods can get lost. AS FAR AS POWER GOES ... Big Bertha has absolutely no problem with low end torque to get the bike off the line with my 250 lbs + fat arse on it. Nor with horsepower to get up into the 90s. Again, carry my fat arse and 40lbs of gear.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,665 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Im always looking for a good deal on a Road star, Road Liner, Royal Star, esp a bike that is fully stock with low miles.

This one came up. The owner said he also put an after market exhaust on the bike, but did not say anything about re-jetting the carb to match.

I would not be concerned about the higher compression piston set since it was done by the dealer when they did the recall. Im sure they would set up the bike correctly, but this issue about the owner running it on regular grade octane has me concerned.

If the timing was not adjusted to prevent pinging, the engine could have piston and valve damage. Maybe the owner did not realize the engine was pinging all these years. The bike only has 20k miles on it - about 1000 miles a year is a pretty casual rider.

The owner has a relative that is thinking about buying it, so I have a few days until I will know if its still for sale.

There is also a low mileage 2000 Royal star for sale for about the same price ($3k). I might go check that out this weekend.

Thanks for your responses. I have to keep reminding myself that some bike owners do things that dont make any sense.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
251 Posts
I know your preference is a stock bike and in this situation I would pass on the bike and HC pistons...especially since the stock Roadstar engine is rock solid. There are plenty of deals out there. This guy sounds like some who have no idea what's been done their bike. With all the mods I've done to bikes over the years, I've told myself I'm staying with stock on the next one and the only mods I want to consider are seats and windshields. I have a friend that had an older Royal star for years and it was a great bike...very comfortable and smooth. Good luck!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,665 Posts
Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
I looked at a 2000 Royal Star Boulevard with 22k miles on it this morning. Very nice bike, its a down scale version of the tour package, smaller windshield, leather saddle bags instead of the hard bags, and it has the maxi-pad passenger seat (which would get immediately removed) instead of the bigger passenger seat with backrest (which would also get immediately removed).

Never rode one before - very nice, smooth, lots of low end. Both 4th and 5th gear are overdrive - its definitely designed for the highway. I can get it for $2,500.

I still want to see the Road Star (tuesday) before I make up my mind, and talk to the owner. Maybe he did not explain things clearly about the "hi compression" pistons.

They are very different bikes:

4 carbs, shaft drive, water cooled, 4 independent exhaust pipes, cast alum wheels w/ tubeless tires, about 40 lbs heavier

vs 1 carb on two cylinders, air cooled with a belt drive, spoke wheels with tubes


I could go either way, and be very happy for the next 10 years with either bike.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,665 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
The owner of the Road Star with the hi compression pistons sold it to his nephew.

I am now the happy owner of TWO Vstar bikes. Getting the plates and bike wednesday - will post photos in another thread tomorrow.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
50 Posts
I went bigger

Looking at a low mileage 2000 Road Star purchase from the original owner.

When the dealer did the transmission spring clip recall they 'suggested' they could upgrade the engine with hi compression pistons in the process (for a price).

Googling this a bit it appears yamaha did this to offset the cost of the recall where they could.

I asked the seller if he runs hi octane gas in the bike, and he said no.

?!

Im confused on this: why put hi compression cylinders in an engine, and then back off the timing so the bike does not ping on regular octane gas? You are firing the ignition before the piston reaches it hi compression point, so I would think you would have no increase in HP with your $500+ piston modification.

Other that this, it sounds like a good bike.

Where is Paul Harvey with the rest of the story when you need him?

Is this something that was commonly done when the transmission recall was implemented: putting in new hi compression pistons/cylinders, but setting up the bike to run on regular fuel?





I went bigger and did the the 100mm pistons on my 2000 RoadStar that I bought new. Did the mod myself pulled the engine down sent the jugs to New York had them bored and coated with ceramic. I did have to run hightest gas and often added a octane buster. The bike was a monster. Hand to put a heavy duty clutch in it because the stock one would slip due to the torque. That was back in 2002. I'm sure the old gal is still out there somewhere and I bet who ever owns it now has no idea what a monster it is. But now I bought my friends old 2000 Roadie that he bought at the same time and place that I bought mine. Now I'm in the process of getting this bike back to stock as close as I can. Don't need the loud pipes so pulled the cobras and another friend of mine has a brand new set of stock pipes in his attic for 15 years that he saved when he bought a 2003 and had custom pipes put on it before he ever picked up the bike from the dealer. So I guess the answer is yes with High compression pistons you need high octane.

Cheers,

Al Jones
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,665 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
interesting. I never got the whole story on the bike cause he sold it to his nephew.

I got a 2000 royal star instead, loving every minute on it.
 
1 - 10 of 10 Posts
Top