The Yamaha YBR125’s very light and boasts surprisingly good handling. Nothing too mad: it’s just forgiving and easy to practice your cornering on. The suspension’s basic but effective while the Yamaha YBR125's brakes are good, especially at the front. It even sounds pretty fruity. There’s kick, as well as electric, start.
Yamaha YBR125 reader query: How can I make my bike more comfy?
Q. I have been using my Yamaha YBR125 to ride up from Cornwall to Stevenage on family visits. It’s 289 miles each way and I get a terribly numb bum after a while.
It gets so bad I have to stop every 25 miles between motorway services. I’m not ready for a 600, but is there a slightly bigger bike I could use that is more comfortable?
Juliette Jahn, Camelford
A. Kawasaki’s ZXR250 would be an ideal step up for you, but if money’s really tight at the moment I’d look to make your existing bike more comfortable.
Mark Holmes here used an Airhawk saddle cushion on a 900-mile ride through France and really rated it. It uses 14 interconnected air chambers that you can inflate so that the pressure of your backside and the bony bits are spread more evenly.
The trick is not to have it too hard as it’ll be no different from your stock seat, but allow a bit of give so the pressure can balance out, without you feeling like you are on a water bed. It’s made by RoHo, a firm that provides wheelchair cushions and mattresses that prevent life-threatening pressure sores, so they know what they are doing.
Bykebitz brings them into the UK and they cost from £79.
The Yamaha YBR125's air-cooled four stroke is pretty nippy, with enough power to propel you around town or along easy A roads at a fairly decent pace. The Yamaha YBR125's top whack’s around 70mph but cruising at 55mph is infinitely more comfortable. Smooth fuel injection helps you along and there’s a choke (under the tank, unfortunately) for those cold starts.
Yamaha YBR125 reader query: revs won't drop
Q: I bought a 2005 Yamaha YBR125 privately few weeks ago, it didn’t tick over very well then but I thought it just needed a good service. It starts OK but after it’s warmed up and ready, if you throttle on and off the revs hang up at 3000rpm for a few seconds then slowly down drop down to a tickover around 1500rpm. If the throttle stop screw is turned out any more it cuts out instead of ticking over. The carb, jets and air filter have been cleaned out, pilot air screw adjusted to 1 1/2 turns out, throttle cable adjusted OK and throttle slide sits down after closing the throttle.
Roy Wilson, email
A: It sounds like you have an air leak. You need to do a good visual check for cracked intake rubber; maybe the airbox trunking is off or has a clip missing.
If there’s nothing obvious, the next step is to get the bike hot and misbehaving and then spray the intake area with WD40. Spray the whole area with plenty of WD and once the engine sound changes put the straw onto the WD can and the more focused spray should enable you to pinpoint the air leak as the change in engine note is from it revving on more as it sucks the WD into the motor...But, if you are in any doubt about spraying inflammable liquid around a hot/running engine, get another pair of eyes on it or book it in.
The Yamaha YBR125 is build-to-a-budget and, to an extent, it shows. Owners talk of dodgy indicator wiring and occasionally sticky gearboxes but, overall, they seem happy, especially when the Yamaha YBR125 costs so little to buy. The engine’s solid, proven and reliable.
Yamaha YBR125 reader query: Clutch issue
Q. Just recently my YBR125 has started mucking around when it comes to shifting up from first to second. It will eventually go into gear, but only after several de-clutchings and an embarrassing 30 seconds on the road.
All the other changes are OK, up and down the range. It feels like I haven’t pulled the clutch in, yet occasionally it goes through fine. It all works perfectly when at a standstill.
The chain and sprockets are OK and the clutch is adjusted correctly and I haven’t dropped it or worked on that area of the bike.
Blake, MCN forums
A. It seems that the YBR is sensitive to clutch drag caused by the oil. If you go too long between changes or use oil that is a high viscosity that can cause problems, so give it an oil change and don't fill it to the maximum.
We've heard that play in the gearshift shaft can also cause problems, and some owners have made a spacer between the shift lever and engine case to force the shaft into a better position.
Cheap to buy, very cheap to insure and fuel consumption’s astonishing. Things rarely go wrong with Yamaha YBR125s but, if they do, parts are inexpensive and easy to find plus the Yamaha YBR125 is simple to work on yourself, saving even more money. Up against the likes of Honda’s legendary CG125 (which is the same price).
Insurance group: 4 of 17 – compare motorcycle insurance quotes now.
Analogue clocks and a fuel gauge make up the Yamaha YBR125's basic but useful dash; there’s a centrestand, luggage rack and a grabrail for pillions. The seat on the Yamaha YBR125 is pretty comfy, even over distance, but the mirror stalks are a bit short for decent rear vision. Cast alloy wheels look smart and there’s an aftermarket screen available from Yamaha for when the elements get too much.