1981 Yamaha YZ125H

1981 Yamaha YZ125H1981 Yamaha YZ125H

This showcase 1981 Yamaha YZ125H is shared to us from Dennis Fitzpatrick. Dennis has a great story of him and his son working on and restoring this vintage mx machine.

My semi-restored 1981 Y125H. I bought this from a friend who raced it for a bit and he wanted to upgrade to a YZ250. I bought it in 1981 and raced it for a while. As of 1985, it pretty much sat until 1995. I then disassembled it with the intent of restoring it. I ended up in a divorce and it sat, again, as a basket case, until 2015. Then, my eldest son, asked why we haven’t restored the YZ. That was the spark I needed to begin restoring the YZ125 with him.

We repainted the frame, pipe, swingarm and cleaned up the rest. We replaced the bearings, honed the cylinder and put in new piston and rings, and replaced all seals, o-rings, and gaskets. When we installed the rotor/flywheel, and set the timing, the rotor slipped off the key, which we were not aware of, but the bike seemed to run fine, but it didn’t take long for the original stator to melt down. I tried a Ricky Stator replacement stator, and it would start, but would die as soon as I rolled on the throttle. I ditched the Ricky Stator unit and ended up buying A HPI ignition system, installed it, and it’s been running great, ever since.

It’s been a fun project and I’ve enjoyed sourcing replacement parts and some cosmetic work. The handle bars are new, we replaced the seat foam and seat cover, and I finally found good aftermarket fork boots that fit. Also, had the fork seals and bushings were replaced. The original Mikuni carb float bowl was trashed, from me never draining it. I found a decent used OEM Mikuni on eBay, and replaced all the jets, etc.

The most interesting restoration piece, was the unique steering stem routing of the coolant, set up. Fortunately, we were able to clean up the stem and install the new seals, which are very difficult to find, and it works great! We’re now looking for another project bike to restore, so we have another bike to ride, for the two of us.

Thank you for sharing your Yamaha Dennis!

Published: May 11, 2020 1:21 am Categorized in: ,

1981 Yamaha YZ125H & Parts

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1 Comment

  • Tom Parent says:


    I would like to get Dennis Fitzpatricks contact info, or ask that you send him mine. The 81 YZ 125 project and story is very similar to my own, except I have not restored mine yet. I would like to query him about parts, tectonic.


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