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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Can 1987's be up-dated to newer post 87 CDI's ?

Having never worked on a 87 model, let alone one in a need of a new CDI I'm definately ignorant. :dontknow:

My current ( and 1st. ) TW is a 2010 with very low miles and she's running great and I am possibly looking at pickining up another if the price and condition of the bike are what I would consider "Good".

I have seen the resale value of 87's low in comparison to a bike just one year newer. I have also read where experienced people here occassionaly affirmed that the lower cost is justified when talking about 87 models.

I'm anticipating that much of this is likely due to the 1987 "specific CDI's" and problems they appear to be famous for ? I read where new CDI's for that year, or even rebuilt ones if avalible, can be very expensive.

Is there nothing that can be done to up-grade 87 models to be able to utlize the newer post 87 CDI's.

I ask as the 87's are indeed priced cheaper, and I may like to take advantage of this price differance if in I deed pick up another TW for the wife or one of the grandson's to ride with me.. There is a local 87 that looks good ( Red and White ) but I'm not sure if I should consider it ?

excalibur
 

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I'm in the camp of JUST SAY NO!

Although you might get lucky:) some have.
 

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I'm in the camp of JUST SAY NO!

Although you might get lucky:) some have.
I made that decision just yesterday myself too but more from a general compatibility issue all around wanting another one to do more extensive projects on but perfectly compatible with my newer 16. With that said there is a sticky on the technical Help Section about a new guy custom building CDI's for the 87's and soon for all the TW's. He was on here recently discussing them.

Google cdiparts.com

I bookmarked it because he was advancing the timing on top end in hopes of getting a bit more power I assume, out of the post 87 bikes since they had this included and I think it was discussed that they are all rolled back to 30 degrees now instead of the 35 like in 87.
 

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First of all, I have never tried this, so this is pure speculation on my part.

If you were to replace the flywheel, stator/left side engine cover and CDI of the 1987 with those same parts from any other year TW, the engine should run just fine.

I have no idea what would be involved in getting all of the remaining electrical system connected and working, i.e., the lights, starter, charging system, fusing, safety interlocks, etc.

I believe that Lizrdbrth did this swap on one of his bikes and ended up replacing the entire wiring harness because of connectology (I just made up that word, spell-check says I should have used gynecology :D) issues.
 

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First of all, I have never tried this, so this is pure speculation on my part.

If you were to replace the flywheel, stator/left side engine cover and CDI of the 1987 with those same parts from any other year TW, the engine should run just fine.

I have no idea what would be involved in getting all of the remaining electrical system connected and working, i.e., the lights, starter, charging system, fusing, safety interlocks, etc.

I believe that Lizrdbrth did this swap on one of his bikes and ended up replacing the entire wiring harness because of connectology (I just made up that word, spell-check says I should use have used gynecology :D) issues.
While were are at this can i add on to that question by asking if the wiring from 88 to 2000 is consistent after the one year 1987. I think I am confident that it is so for 2001 to present ?? but if not do tell, please... Save me the misery on not fully knowing the details of this gynocological history :)
 

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I also have two '87 TW's and really like both of them.

I also have a new '88 CDI that came with one of the 87's and I plugged it into the '87 and the bike ran fine. There was a left over wire as '88 and later CDI have 10 wires and the 87 has 9 wires. I have heard but don't know for sure that the pickup coil burns out if you run the '88 CDI for very long in the '87.

All that being said, if you can get an '87 for $300 cheaper and a new CDI costs $300 then it is pretty much a wash.

One thing I do like about the '87 is the headlight comes on with a running engine. If you kill the engine the headlight goes out.

There was a guy on the old forum that got one of these CDI and said it worked really well. Timing is completely adjustable.

Electronic for motorbikes - IgniTech P?elou?
 

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I have no idea what would be involved in getting all of the remaining electrical system connected and working, i.e., the lights, starter, charging system, fusing, safety interlocks, etc.

I believe that Lizrdbrth did this swap on one of his bikes and ended up replacing the entire wiring harness because of connectology (I just made up that word, spell-check says I should have used gynecology :D) issues.
Connectology is completely acceptable.
 

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Having never worked on a 87 model, let alone one in a need of a new CDI I'm definately ignorant. :dontknow:

My current ( and 1st. ) TW is a 2010 with very low miles and she's running great and I am possibly looking at pickining up another if the price and condition of the bike are what I would consider "Good".

I have seen the resale value of 87's low in comparison to a bike just one year newer. I have also read where experienced people here occassionaly affirmed that the lower cost is justified when talking about 87 models.

I'm anticipating that much of this is likely due to the 1987 "specific CDI's" and problems they appear to be famous for ? I read where new CDI's for that year, or even rebuilt ones if avalible, can be very expensive.

Is there nothing that can be done to up-grade 87 models to be able to utlize the newer post 87 CDI's.

I ask as the 87's are indeed priced cheaper, and I may like to take advantage of this price differance if in I deed pick up another TW for the wife or one of the grandson's to ride with me.. There is a local 87 that looks good ( Red and White ) but I'm not sure if I should consider it ?

excalibur
Early morning thoughts before I've had the proper amount of coffee!


CJ7Pilot and elime offer good advice.

I have gone the other way one time electrically speaking. I bought a 93 engine and had a 2005 TW. All I did was swap out the stator/flywheel from the 05 and put it in the 93 as TW describes and everything ran fine. So my TW was still at the 2001 and up electrical system.

Here is one thing I was thinking of doing should I ever buy a 87 TW and something I've toyed with on my 83 XT200. (I have a 1983 XT200 with a very similar electrical system to the 87 TW except I have one more hoop to jump in that the XT is a 6 volt system. This is lovely as 6 volt bulbs are not stocked on the auto parts shelves and I have to order them online.) So, what I was thinking to changed is the stator/flywheel and wiring harness from a newer year TW with all the electrical components necessary for the change. Basically swap entire electrics from another year (pick one), CDI, Regulator/Rectifier, coil etc. and replace the 87 system. My thought was I could easily find a non-running newer TW to rob these parts from. I've been at our local motorcycle junk yard and pretty sure it can be done.

As a side note, I happen to have 2 good CDI's for my XT so I'm not doing the wiring change but the idea will stick with me should I need too in the future.
 

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Is the IgniTech non programmable CDI better than OEM? I would be interested to hear from someone using any type IgniTech on a 87

I just bought 2x 1987 TW200s (police owned) and the one year CDI/stator problem has me worried. My wife and I are doing the TAT this summer and I would like the bikes to be as close to 100% as possible, without breaking the bank. It would be ideal to convert the bikes to the '88+ ignition/charging system like the OP, but that seems like more trouble and money than I can handle. So I'm thinking carry a single OEM '87 CDI and a cheap GY6 CDI. Whats the likely-hood of them both crapping out? Then switch head and taillights to LEDs so the battery can get more juice. Thoughts?
 

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I have an '87 and replaced the CDI, left cover, stator, pickup coil, flywheel, voltage regulator and the wiring harness with '01-present parts. Modified the wiring harness a bit to make it work. Actually if I just had the CDI connector I could have made it work with the old harness. In fact I'm completely convinced that with just the CDI connector I could make everything else on the '87 work with the current CDI. But my stator wires were ratty and the CDI power winding in the stator had dark insulation (indicating potential breakdown), so I decided to upgrade to the newer, cheaper, higher output parts.

BTW, if you do what I did don't buy one of the cheap Chinese voltage regulators. I did and it was a dud. So I bought a used factory reg to replace it.
Any year but '87, you can use your existing reg. But the '87 has a single phase charging system, so its regulator won't work with a later stator.
 

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Is the IgniTech non programmable CDI better than OEM? I would be interested to hear from someone using any type IgniTech on a 87

I just bought 2x 1987 TW200s (police owned) and the one year CDI/stator problem has me worried. My wife and I are doing the TAT this summer and I would like the bikes to be as close to 100% as possible, without breaking the bank. It would be ideal to convert the bikes to the '88+ ignition/charging system like the OP, but that seems like more trouble and money than I can handle. So I'm thinking carry a single OEM '87 CDI and a cheap GY6 CDI. Whats the likely-hood of them both crapping out? Then switch head and taillights to LEDs so the battery can get more juice. Thoughts?
Welcome to the forum!

I have two '87s, one with the original cdi, and the other with a new cdi. I also have a second new cdi in my box of parts, because sooner or later, I'm going to need it.

'87 cdis aren't failing because of bad design, they're failing because they're over 30 years old.

If you can swing it, just install new cdis, and call it good for another 30 years!
 

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I had one fail on my 87, I don't panic about it though, bought a new one and moved on. I was looking at updating to newer electronics but I really only think that makes sense if you have a donor bike at your disposal. By the time you piecemeal one together with the later model parts and sort out the wiring differences you could have bought 3 new oem 87 cdi modules with the time and money you spent. I say just pony up and put an oem unit ($260 from partzilla) and ride it for another 25 years before it fails again. The OEM unit is literally a 2 minute project to install, done. That being said, I love tinkering on things, so I can see the fun in the upgrade process.
 

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Thanks for the welcome and the insight! So my bikes have been sitting since 2002 does that mean I get and extra 15 yrs out of my cdi?...ha thats optimistic
What worried me is why Yamaha abandoned the original system and the mystery of why the cdi fails, ive tried figuring out the repair but havent turned up anything. Everyone says they expire after 30 years so does that mean the spare in your drawer is degrading?
I have wasted too much time chasing the 87 cdi problem down the rabbit hole. Its been there the whole time, pony up the money and buy oem replacements. Now something worth tinkering with is my headlight dimming at low rpm...
 

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...Now something worth tinkering with is my headlight dimming at low rpm...
That's normal for '87s, too! :D

The headlight runs directly off the stator, and is not connected to the battery. It's naturally going to dim at low rpm, and go out when the engine quits.

In the TW world, the 1987 electrical system seems to be a one-off... but it really isn't. 1987 was the first year for the TW200, but not for Yamaha motorcycles.

The '87 electrical system is really more of a "final year" application of a previous generation of Yamaha electrical systems.
 
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