How old is too old? One day I came across an old 1983 Yamaha PW 50. This bike was 35 years old, WOW! That’s as old as I am! After looking the bike over, I decided this could be a good snag and a fun challenge. This was definitely a diamond in the ruff. Restoring a 35 year old bike, bring it on!
Before I get started. Here is a short breakdown of some of products needed to complete this restoration.
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PRODUCTS NEEDED- 1983 YAMAHA PW 50:
*Always verify parts are for the correct make and model. Some of these links or parts may have changed or vary slightly from the time I purchased them.
- Wipe New
- Graphics – I made my own
- Rubber gloves
- Air Filter– choose the model
- Motor Oil– 2 stroke
- Ratio Rite Measuring Cup
- Cable lube
- Seat Cover
- Carburetor cleaner
Let’s check the bike out. I looked up what a 1983 PW 50 looked like originally brand new. You know, back before I was born! I usually lean toward the original look.
The graphics are worn, faded, and peeling off, but surprisingly decent for how old they were. The plastic was dirty, stained, and marked up. The seat was improperly recovered before but that’s a simple fix. The carburetor was plugged up, spark plug needed to be replaced. The oil and air filter needed to be replaced and the gas needed to be drained and tank cleaned out.
The frame was actually bent on this one too (just like a previous one I had done). Apparently it’s a common thing.
It is always a good idea to go through all the cables and see if they need to be lubed or even replaced.
This engine needed a good tune up. Cleaning the carburetor and rebuilding the top end helped bring it back to life.
35 year old dirt and grime! Nothing a little elbow grease won’t fix.
If there were a picture of what this PW 50 looked like in 1983, this is it! I think I got it pretty close. This one is a little better with the added training wheels!
This bike needed some tlc, but when bikes are taken care of over the years they can run for a long time.
I like to use a product called Wipe New to bring the original shine and color back to the plastics. Luckily, the original plastics were in decent shape. Next, I custom designed the graphics to match the originals as close as I could get. I was pretty happy with the results.
After the engine, plastics, graphics, and other maintenance was done, it was time to replace the seat cover. I purchased a seat cover that matched the original design. Recovering seat covers can be tricky but should be done correctly or can make for a miserable ride and it just looks terrible.
And that is how you take a very old dirt bike and restore it to it’s former glory!
I hope you liked this 35 year old restoration project. If you have any questions, let me know. I would love to hear your comments.