Yamaha FJ 1100 and Yamaha FJ 1200 History
The story of Yamaha FJ motorcycles starts in 1984 with the introduction of Yamaha FJ1100 to European market at a show in Cologne. It was the first 1l engine motorcycle produced by Yamaha. Designed as a superbike suitable for both sporty rides and touring, it was in an immediate hit.
It had many rider friendly characteristics. The low centre of gravity and narrow profile, created by a different style of engine, made the bike easier to manoeuvre despite its significant weight of 252 kg. The seat height was lowered to 78 cm, which made the seating position more upright and comfortable for longer journeys. A large windscreen was added to the fairings, reducing the wind impact on the rider. The FJ's Series were designed more for comfort and sport rather than speed and performance, they were ideal for long distance travels on class A roads and motorways.
Specifications of Yamaha FJ1100 motorcycle
The air cooled four stroke four-cylinder engine of the Yamaha FJ1100 motorcycle was unusual for its time. The aluminium cylinders had an in-line layout, they were connected to four constant velocity 36mm Mikuni carburettors with short intake pipes, then led by four exhaust pipes into a box below the engine, where the exhaust fumes exited via two silencers (mufflers).
The double overhead camshaft, which operated the 16 fuel control valves, was geared directly to the 5 speed clutch and finished with chain final drive. All FJ motorcycles had an electric start only, powered by 12v alternator. The alternator and starter were located behind the cylinders instead of the usual place at the end of the camshaft. The result was a very narrow profile sport touring bike.
Oil & Fuel Supply
The engine lubrication was still separate, provided by a Trochoid pump with oil radiator that also assisted with cooling the multiple cylinder engine. The fuel tank was much larger than previous models, with fuel capacity of 24.5l on the FJ1100 and 22l on the FJ1200. Both models had additional fuel recovery systems fitted to comply with strict emissions regulations in California.
Frame & Suspension
The frame itself had to be improved too. The box section style frame was made from steel and fitted with a tubular subframe which supported the fairings. The rear suspension was a link type swing arm. The 41 mm telescopic front forks at the front suspension were fitted with coil spring and oil damper. There were disc brakes fitted to both wheels.
The Yamaha FJ1100 was produced only for 2 years before it was replaced by the even powerful touring model, the FJ1200.
Yamaha FJ1200 motorcycle
Introduced in the year 1986, the 1188cc displacement engine was just one of many improvements done to the FJ's. The rear grab rail was changed, the bodywork was improved with self cancelling indicators incorporated into the front fairing, the fuel levels were now closely monitored with a low level warning light on the dash right next to the new digital clock.
In the year 1988 the Yamaha FJ1200 received a new chassis, better suspensions, 17-inch front wheel and digitally controlled spark advance unit - the TCI.
The final stage of FJ1200 model development (Yamaha FJ1200 A) came in 1991 with the introduction of ABS (anti-lock) braking system. The new look was finished with trapezoid headlight and aero-screen with optional vertical fins.
End of production
While Yamaha FJ production for the US and rest of the world discontinued in 1993, the FJ 1200 was selling successfully in the UK until 1996.
The sport touring Yamaha FJ1200 was also unique in other ways. As one of the first models, it was fitted with safety features such as an ignition system that is cut off if the bike is in 1st gear and the side stand is down, a feature that is common in all bikes today.
Yamaha FJ1200 was superseded by Yamaha FJR1300.
Yamaha FJ600 supersport bike
The Yamaha FJ600 was in fact a XJ600 bike. The classification FJ was only specific to the US market. Classes as a super-sport bike, it was aimed primarily at sports riders, featuring 6-speed gear box, frame mounted fairings, triple disc brakes and a monoshock rear suspension. The FJ600 was replaced by Yamaha Diversion/Seca II.
Yamaha FJ1100 & Yamaha FJ1200 Parts
We all at Sumo Rubber understand the challenges in keeping these old bikes up and running. As motorcycles develop, so do parts and some are just not economical for Yamaha to produce. This is where we step in and offer you quality reproduction parts to help you service and restore your bike.
Our selection of FJ parts is slowly growing with demand, so if you can't find the part that you are looking for, please email us. Meanwhile, you can start your project with Haynes Workshop Manual for Yamaha FJ1100 & Yamaha FJ 1200 Fours or a set of new footrest rubbers, fuel tank petcock seals or headlight dampers.
For further information about FJ models and their history visit the very comprehensive page on Wikipedia.
Also, you can get lots of good advice and help from fellow motorcycle enthusiasts on the FJowners forum.