'82 XS400R Seca refurbishment thread


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A couple weeks back I bought myself a new project bike. This is my first real restoration project (and my first bike, technically). Today I finally got the old girl home, a 1982 Seca, imported to Norway from the US back in '99. She was sat down in Bergen for a couple weeks after I bought her, but now she's finally up here with me. She's a bit rusty and beat-up, and she doesn't quite run, but pretty much all the pieces are there. I'm looking forward to working on it and learning some new things. I've found quite a bit of information around on this site, and it will most certainly be an instrumental part of my project.

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The bike hasn't run in some 2 years, or even tried started..

The gas tank has lots of bumps on the liner inside (see picture), I'm thinking that's rust under the paint. I drained the tank of any remaining gas, and it was all rusty and messy. That will need a good cleaning, which I've yet to find out how to do.


The throttle valve (?) on the carburetor is stuck, and will surely need to be looked at.
The carburetors themselves will definitely need to be cleaned out, and I'm going to install a fuel filter for it.
The tiny bit of oil that was in the thing reeked of gasoline, so that will have to be drained and washed out a couple times with fresh (ish) oil after I get the carbs sorted.

(sorry about the shoddy quality, my camera doesn't focus well in low light)

It looks like it was dropped on its left side, since the clutch lever is cracked at the base, the gear pedal and the left footrest is loose and almost impossible to work with. There's a small scratch on the tank, but that I can live with.

There's an aftermarket fuse box installed, and the PO gave her new spark plugs. I really hope I don't need to do anything major with the electrics! :p


Some of the plastics are cracked and will need to be either fixed or replaced, depending on how much it'll cost.

Step one is getting it running, then I can start to worry about such things as plastics, chain, sprockets, and tires, which are all shot.

I'll get around to fixing some of the rust, maybe even stripping her down to the bare frame and dealing with the problem at its core, later this year, if everything goes well.

I look forward to working with this project, and this forum!

Any and all advice is very welcome, as I have almost no idea what I'm doing :p
As an aside; if anyone has any idea who exported this beauty, or whereabouts it was located in the US, that would be very helpful. I sadly do not have the US registration number, and the guy who imported it kicked the cancer bucket a few years back. What I do have, however, is the VIN; JYA16M006CA000329. Any info helps, I want to figure out the history of this bike! :)
Thank you
Welcome echo, from one newbie to another. Sounds like you have a plan: focus on getting it running then worry about ancillary and cosmetic. You'll have decent bit of work ahead but it will be worth it!

Definite: thorough carb clean and tank clean.

For carbs keep reading on site (I'm still doing same haha), for tank any motorcycle tank rust YouTube should help. I'd start with less caustic (vinegar) before getting into heavy stuff as I've heard having to reline it can present it's own problems.

For electric, start with a voltage meter to test your batteries viability. Then check for spark by unscrewing the spark plugs and ground them on the engine surface trying to electric start it while watching to see if it generates parks. If you have access to a compression tester will also be worth looking at that early on to determine whether you have to do any engine rebuild...

Godspeed and look forward to hearing of your progress
Thank you for the input, buz.

Tonight I got the tank off, going to attempt to clean out some of the muck in there by pouring some gas through, trying to wash out the rust particles and such. There are so many bumps on the liner, rust spots, that I think keeping it as-is and not relining it will be almost impossible, but we'll see what happens.

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It's a bit rusty, but all surface rust, so I won't do anything with that now.

I got the airbox and the carbs loose, but didn't get the carbs off since I need a shortened allen key to reach one of the bolts on the right side on the intake boots, it wiggles and moves a bit, so I think it'll come out nicely tomorrow when I get/make one.

The throttle valve thingy (pictured) was completely stuck, so I had to screw it off to get the throttle cable off.

The rear brake pedal is also rusted stuck, but the brake itself isn't jammed, the wheel spins freely.

I also got the cracked clutch lever off, wasn't too much trouble. All the cables will likely have to be replaced at some point, or at least lubed up a bit.

Lights were tested, and I found the indicators don't quite work, hopefully it's just the blinker relay that needs replacing. A previous owner has done some extensive work with the wiring, so I think any wiring charts may not be very helpful.
High-beam and brake light works, but not the normal front light. Otherwise the electrics look alright, haven't checked for spark yet since I don't really want to turn her over with all that goo in the carbs and all that.

That's all for now! :)
Soak all the rusted parts in Evapo-Rust. The stuff is amazing at removing rust and its reusable many times. It's available through Amazon and some auto parts stores.
Thank you, sir, I'll try that out once I get her running again. If there's anything plentiful on this bike, it would be rust.
Regardless of what you end up doing with the tank an inline fuel filter will be a must! :) Don't want any tank rust or lining debris getting down into your fuel system...
Alright, so today I got the tank washed out. (Duct tape does not hold up well against gasoline). I believe I got most of the grime and stuff out of it, but if there's anything left it'll go into the fuel filter.
Believe it or not, this is supposed to be gasoline...

There was so much grime I had to take the petcock out of the tank to get it all out.
Petcock hole, after I removed the rust and flaking paint around it.
There's a bit of dirt on the petcock itself, but not as much as I thought.

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Also cleaned up the gas cap and its hole a bit.

Another major step, I finally got the carbs off the bike. The top screw of the right hand intake boot did not want to come out, I had to make a shortened allen key to get to it at all.
Once I finally got it out, I noticed some white powdery stuff coming out of the left hand side of the air box.
I'm not quite sure what it is, but I think it's the same as what was on the gas cap. There has probably been a backflow of gas into the airbox which hasn't been cleaned up.
Quite a bit on the left side, nothing on the right.
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Left hand valve is smeared shut with this grime, that's why the throttle wouldn't budge. Again, the right side has nothing.

Left hand intake on the engine.

This is what came out of the carbs when I emptied them out, there were no solid lumps, only this orange rusty grime.

A messy workstation :p

The left hand top cover hasn't come off yet, as I managed to almost destroy the screw heads of 2 screws..

I'm going to start on the carbs fully tomorrow, hopefully.

It's looking positive, kind of.


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Make sure you use a jis screwdriver! Can Google it if you're unsure. PB blaster would also probably work well to free screws provided you could avoid getting it on rubber gaskets.... But first make sure you use JIS unless the screws have been replaced with regular Phillips

Nice progress!
I don't think I have JIS screwdriver.. I should get one! I was spraying the screws with some kind of regular rust solvent, it worked pretty well on all the other screws.

Imperative working on Japanese bikes to avoid stripping screws. Fits like a glove. I'm very pleased with set I got an Amazon (Bessel ball grip - says prokon on packaging) if they are available in your country. Presumably local Yama or Honda dealer should also carry one?
Pretty much all things on Amazon ship to Norway, though I can't seem to find the exact one you mentioned. I'll check with the dealerships I know of to see if they have anything. Waiting for a week for something as simple as a screwdriver is not really my first choice.
While I'm at the Yamaha place I might as well see if anyone has anything to say about the carburetor, I'll bring it along.
I didn't get much done today afterall, I didn't have a JIS screwdriver, and the only shop I found that had a set, only had up to size 1... so I ordered one off ebay, coming in a week and a half, hopefully. The one you linked, buz, doesn't ship to Norway, unfortunately. I got a pack of fuel filters, and crashed my YBR on the way home, for the first time. So that was fun. I ran into some oil/diesel spill in a roundabout and the wheels just disappeared from under me. No injuries on me or any serious damage to the bike fortunately.
I presume normal 6mm fuel hose will do for the xs?
Good point sandman . Holds true on my XS as well

Echo glad you're not any worse for wear. Not sure fuel line size off hand. Mine had it printed on it and I brought it into auto parts store with me to size and replace
Today I got the old oil drained out, about 3 liters came out, very dark and stuffed with gasoline. Put some fresh (ish) oil in and tried to turn her over to see if there's any hope. After a bit of persuading, the starter kicked in and there's life! Nothing's stuck and everything seems to function, though the battery will need to be replaced. Changed the oil again, to wash out some of the remnants of gas in there, and changed the oil filter.
The intake boots on the carbs will need to be replaced, any tips where I should get them? is mikesxs the best place?