700/750 Maxim-X Menu

Yamaha Maxim-X

Checking Fork Pressure

Like most other motorcycles, the Maxim-X forks require very little air pressure. Novices will visit the air pump at their local service station and blow their fork seals as soon as they begin to pump. You might think it should be possible to do it that way, but the very small fork air volume makes it impossible. Just a brief application using a service station compressor will cost you big when it's time to replace the seals.

For a stiffer suspension and a "harder" ride, increase the pressure in the front forks. For a softer suspension and a "cushier" ride, decrease the pressure in the front forks. To make absolutely certain you don't overcharge the front forks, use a hand operated bicycle pump. Believe it or not, the air volume in the Maxim-X forks is so small that it takes only a few strokes of a small hand pump to reach the fork air pressure limit. The operating range is

39.2 to 118 kPa   (0.4 to 1.2 kg/cm²   or   5.7 to 17.1 psi)

Battery Removal

While it's relatively easy to access the battery in the Maxim-X, it's a little more awkward to actually remove the battery from the motorcycle. Like so many other models, Yamaha designed the Maxim-X battery housing in such a way as to leave little space to grip the battery to pull it out. After accidentaly dropping the battery back into the housing one too many times, I finally decided to find a solution. (List of Maxim-X replacement batteries)

I had several ideas before designing a simple battery carrier from straps, one which could be left under the seat together with the battery until it was necessary to remove the battery again. I went to the local hardware store and bought the cheapest package of nylon strapping I could find ($6.49 CDN) and 30cm (1 ft) of 16mm (5/8") radiator hose ($1.28 CDN). That, together with a stapler, is all that is necessary to construct a simple battery carrier.

Buy some cheap strapping and small hose.
Wrap a length of strapping around the battery and mark the length.
Cut the strap 2" to 3" longer than was marked..
Staple the strap into a loop in an overlapping 2" to 3" area as marked.
Slide the strap loop around the battery horizontally.
Loop another length of strap under the battery and up to a point several inches overhead.
Overlap 2" to 3" of strapping and mark the length to indicate the overlap.
Cut 3" of hose and slide it over one end of the strap before stapling (it will be necessary to fold the strap to accomplish this).
Staple the carrying strap (the longer one) into a loop in an overlapping 2" to 3" area as marked.
Slide the hose segment over the stapled area.
Put both the horizontal and vertical straps into place around the battery then mark the two areas where they cross.
Remove the straps from the battery, then staple the marked areas perpendicularly at both points where the straps crossed.

Cleaning Aluminum Wheels

It's no secret that it's difficult to clean brushed aluminum. There are a lot of products on the market that claim to do so but I've found that most of them are only useful in removing road grime but do little to remove indications of oxidation. Since the Maxim-X has many brushed aluminum surfaces, the largest of which is the rear wheel, there's a lot of difficult cleaning to do from time to time. Through experimentation I've found that nothing works quite as well as shop-grade hand cleaner. It's not perfect and it does require some muscle but hand cleaner is the most effective brushed aluminum cleaner I've found and it's easily washed off with water.

Those of you who want to try this should know that shop-grade hand cleaner is very abrasive and shouldn't be used on polished aluminum or on brushed aluminum with a protective clear coat. Both types of surface would surely be damaged by an abrasive substance. Try this on some bad spots if you're having trouble - but be careful because it's not for use everywhere.


Coil Moisture Shield

This section has information about a simple method to help shield the Maxim-X coils from moisture and includes a downloadable template to make your own coil moisture shield: Coil_Shield.html

Radiator Guard Vibration

Other Maxim-X owners have probably heard the same annoying vibration I have while driving. The vibration didn't bother me at first because I was just thrilled to be riding the X but after a longer period of time it began to get worse and really started to make me nuts. I found myself poking and prodding, touching and holding everything on the bike until I finally discoverd the sound originated from the plastic radiator guard. I tightened the two mounting screws and replaced a missing rubber grommet for one of the lower mounts but still the vibration persisted. I eventually decided to take extreme measures.

To permanently end all radiator guard vibration, simply remove the plastic guard and put self-adhesive weather stripping (foam tape) along the full vertical length of both sides and the front of each side tank. After adding the four weather strips, the plastic guard has to be flexed slightly to replace it but after a while, the foam compresses somewhat releaving the tension in the plastic guard. This repair can be accomplished in under 15 minutes with only a few cents worth of weather stripping, a #2 Phillips screwdriver and a pair of scissors.

For those who've never removed the guard before, it's easy. There are only two Phillips screws holding the upper edge as shown in the adjacent pictures. The screws are difficult to access with a regular screwdriver so you might want to buy a 90° ratchet driver with a #2 Phillips bit. Once the screws are removed the upper edge of the guard swings forward, after which it's easily pushed off of two lower supports with rubber grommets. That's all. Nothin' to it.

Maxim-X Gas Mileage

There's quite a bit of information for this section so it has a page all its own: Gas_Mileage.html

Replacing Rubber Shock Bushing

I recently began to hear a brief knock behind me on acceleration, something that sounded like metal on metal. After a little investigating, I discovered that the right side rubber shock bushing had disintegrated and almost completely fallen out. Essentially, I no longer had a rubber bushing to prevent the shock from bottoming out onto the mount. That was the metal on metal sound I was hearing each time I began to accelerate from a stop.

Naturally, I visited the local Yamaha dealer to inquire about replacing the bushing but they didn't have anything encouraging to tell me. The bushing wasn't sold individually, nor could it be installed if it were because the entire coil & shock assembly was a single unit. I briefly considered buying the entire assembly until I was told that the Maxim-X shocks were discontinued and after-market shocks were sold in pairs for upwards of $350 CDN. That was simply unacceptable so I had to think of something else to solve the problem.

It was purely by accident that I found an almost perfect solution while shopping at a local Canadian Tire store. In passing, I noticed a rack of rubber rings of varying sizes which turned out to be PCV grommets. I measured the shock shaft and then bought an appropriate grommet with a hole slightly less than the shaft's ½" diameter and a height slightly more than the Maxim-X rear coil spacing. From there, it was simply a matter of slicing a groove into one side of the grommet, setting the coil spring preset to minimum and pushing the "bushing" into place through the coil. Problem solved! It could have been potentially $350 CDN but was fixed very effectively for less than $5 CDN in only a few minutes - and it works.

Washing the Maxim-X

There's not a lot to say here but I do have a few small tips to help prevent damage to the Maxim-X by washing, some of which I read in another motorcycle manual and which were very sensible.

As mentioned in the section on Wet Ignition Coils it's obviously a bad idea to shoot high pressure water at the coils. It's also possible to damage the radiator core and strip paint off the block with high pressure water. What most people don't think about is the front wheel bearing. On the Maxim-X, like many other motorcycles, the front wheel bearing is concealed only by a flexible rubber seal. Shooting a stream of high pressure water at the seal could penetrate it and blow the grease out of the bearing leaving the front wheel bearing only partially lubricated as you drive. Over time, you might end up doing damage to the bearing so it's worth mentioning that it's important to be careful with high pressure washers around the front axle.

Even without high pressure, there are a few areas of the Maxim-X that would prefer not to be wet at all. Both side handle bar controls, the ignition switch and the exhaust openings should be protected. As shown in the adjacent pictures, those critical areas are easily protected. Just push some plastic bags into the mufflers, fasten freezer bags over the handlebar controls with elastic bands and put a small piece of muffler tape over the ignition switch, the helmet lock and the gas cap keyhole. It's not difficult and your bike will thank you for it.

Replacing Handlebar Grips

I recently replaced the grips on my Maxim-X and only later realized that what I chose to do might not have been a good idea. Since the original grips were about 18 years old and the rubber was breaking down, I had black hands after each trip regardless of how often or how thoroughly I washed the grips. I also put about 15000km (9320 miles) on my Maxim-X odometer every year and with that much driving you soon realize that the original grips can be hard on the hands because of their diameter.

When I finally replaced them, I did so with grips of significantly greater diameter, a set that's usually used on Gold Wings and other touring bikes. No question, the new leather & chrome grips look fantastic and are easy on the hands on longer cruises but I think I would rather have kept the original grips for two unexpected reasons. First, because the new grips are made of leather, I find that my gloved hands slip more easily over the grips which requires me to hold on more firmly. Apparently leather on leather is a little more slick than expected. Second, and more important, since the new grips have a larger diameter than the originals, shifting has become a little bit of a problem. Clutch lever travel is noticeably less and I've reached the limits of my own hand extension when riding with gloves. None of this is a problem when riding with bare hands but I find that I have to work harder to grasp the clutch lever and to keep my hand on it when wearing gloves. Although the larger grips are aesthetically more pleasing, my gear shifting has become a little less smoothe as a result.

Unfortunately, touring bike grips like mine are incredibly difficult to remove once they're on so if you're planning to replace your grips, I'd have to recommend staying with the original grip diameter. Functionally, it seems to be better.

For those who are interested in replacing their grips, with a little effort it is possible to remove the old ones without damaging them. Believe it or not, if they're made of rubber they can be removed like a rubber (I just couldn't resist). Roll the open end back to start then pull the flipped section straight and roll some more. Near the end, it's actually possible to double up the rolled rubber to a point where the last 2 inches will slide off. When replacing grips, just wet the inside with a little water or spit and slide them on in a single motion. If you stop halfway, it might be difficult to get started again. Some people first apply glue or hair spray to the handle bars to keep the grips from moving when in place but that's completely unnecessary. They won't move even if you want them to when the water/spit dries up.

Maxim-X Oil & Filter Change

There's quite a bit of information for this section so it has a page all its own: Oil_Change.html

Mikuni Carburetor - Pilot Screw Caps

This section has many pictures to accompany step-by-step instructions so it has a page all its own: Pilot_Screw_Caps.html

Thermostat Replacement

This section has many pictures to accompany step-by-step instructions so it has a page all its own: Thermostat_Menu.html

Spark Plugs

This section provides everything you need to know about Maxim-X spark plugs with cross referenced part numbers and details about Iridium plugs as well. SparkPlugs.html

Fuel Filter

This section discusses the need to, and reasons for, installing a fuel filter on the Maxim-X and provides recommendations for an appropriate filter. Details can be found at: Fuel_Filter.html

Spark Plug Cap Service

This section details how to test, disassemble and repair or replace the resistor spark plug caps used on the Maxim-X. Servicing details can be found at: SparkPlug_Caps.html

Carburetor 5VALVE Side Cover

This section details how to reinforce the plastic mounting holes in the carburetors' chrome 5VALVE side covers before they break. Reinforcing details can be found at: 5Valve_Covers.html

Horn Bracket Repair

This section details how to reinforce the steel Maxim-X horn brackets which tend to develop stress cracks at the first bracket screw location. Repair and reinforcing details can be found at: Horn_Bracket.html

SaddleBag Retainer

This section details how to create a custom saddlebag retainer bar for the Maxim-X. The bar can be removed and installed in only seconds and costs less than $10 to make: Saddlebag_Retainer.html

Sparkplug Socket

This section provides information for replacing the original sparkplug socket provided in the Maxim-X tool kit. It's not as easy as you might think to find an alternative to the original tool if it has been lost or damaged: Sparkplug_Socket.html

Dyna Coil Installation

This section provides information for replacing the stock Maxim-X coils with after-market Dyna Coils. You'll find step-by-step instructions with pictures: Dyna_Coils.html

Engine Guards

This section details the choices of engine guards for the Maxim-X and provides instructions for the installation of VMax guards on the Maxim-X: Engine_Guards.html

Sync Gauge Comparison

This section compares the pros and cons of four different styles of 4-gauge vacuum synchronization tools with some additional comments about synchronization: Sync_Gauge_Comparison.html

Carbtune II Cleaning

This section has instructions for disassembling & cleaning the Morgan Carbtune II vacuum synchronization tool. There are plenty of pictures to help understand how it's constructed and cleaned: Carbtune2_Cleaning.html

Float Bowl Fuel Level Gauge

This section has instructions for making your own float bowl fuel level gauge for the Maxim-X Mikuni carbs. There are also instructions for its use with pictures and tips: Fuel_Level_Gauge.html


This section is all about Seafoam. What is it? How's it used? What are the benefits? Where can you get it?... and anything else I can think of related to Seafoam: Seafoam.html

Leaky Petcock

This section describes the all-to-common problem of a leaky vaccum petcock. It explains how to discover whether you have a leaky petcock, provides sourcing details for petcock replacement and offers pictures & instructions for anyone who wants to rebuild their vacuum petcock: Petcock.html

Steering Bolt Plugs

This section provides instructions for replacing your chrome steering bolt plugs. There are also instructions for making your own. BoltPlugs.html

Failing Side Stand Switch

This section deals with the all-to-common problem of a failing side stand switch. It describes the symptoms, provides sourcing details for replacement switches, describes a method of repairing the switch and provides instructions for removing and replacing the switch: SideStandSwitch.html

Front Wheel Modification

This section is for those who like to visually modify their Maxim-X in new and inventive ways. It describes a method whereby the stock front wheel can be replaced with something beefier. Credit goes to John Bailes for this creative modification. Front_Wheel_Mod.html

Fuel Mixture Setting Methods

This section details various methods for setting and fine-tuning the Maxim-X fuel:air mixture. It also includes other tips and notes related to fuel:air mixture adjusting. Fuel_Mixture_Setting_Methods.html

Spark Plug Well Drains

This section shows the locations of the Maxim-X spark plug well drain holes. It also includes instructions for clearing the drain holes without getting dirt & debris in the cylinders. Spark_Plug_Wells.html