XT600Z 3AJ - Chesterfield

Introduction To My 600 Tenere Chesterfield

I was 20 years old when I first fell in love with the XT600z 3AJ. While browsing Google Images for larger enduro/overland travel bikes to complement my small XT225 Serow, I stumbled across Ingo Locherts XT600Z Tenere Chesterfield rally replica 3AJ Tenere. Built in Germany in the 90’s/early 2000s, Ingo created a scarce few rally replica bikes with great precision. I fell in love with the style and saved the image to my phone. Over the next few months I kept coming back to the image. Eventually, I took the plunge and dived in to the world of the early Teneres and learnt a great deal about them over the following years.

After a successful client visit at work, where we had engaged in conversation about our dream motorcycles, I came home to browse eBay for my dream bike. There it was. A 1989 XT600Z Tenere 3AJ for sale. However, it was in poor cosmetic shape, yet the engine had been treated to a full rebuild and re-bore. This was my chance to purchase my dream bike and I quickly made him an offer and came to an arrangement. Two weeks later I was the owner of my first Tenere.

Purchase and Pre-Restoration

The bike was on eBay auction when I saw it. It pays to be forward when you really want something so I asked what price he would like for the bike. We came to an agreement at a good price of £1600. This was the first 3AJ I had seen on Ebay so it was hard to valuate the worth of the bike. Subsequent sales I have witnessed have confirmed that this was a fair price with room for the expenses of a restoration.

The bike was in rough shape, many rusted parts, cracked paint and damaged fairing. The tank had seen a crash and was seeping too. However, the engine was of particular interest. After a tour of Spain by the previous owner, the engine had been rebuilt to the tune of £600+. This included a big re-bore. It also featured a kick starter alongside the electric start, a desirable bonus for an overland adventure bike. The engine was that of a 3TB. I also received the full original engine that matched the frame. However, I had this inspected with the intention of rebuilding yet it was discovered that the bottom was of no use due to damage. Along the way I also acquired a 43F full engine. One day I will produce another rebuilt engine out of these.

I rode the bike only a few times before restoration began. It rode quite nice, very comfortable and very stable. It felt like I was sitting atop of a tractor. The exhaust pipes had pin holes in them and the can was full of rust. The rear rim was a 17inch gold anodized rim from a later bike, not standard and the wrong colour. I was advised to get new rims by my wheel builder. Over the rebuild I acquired a number of items, spare plastics, spare tank, clocks, engine bars and a stainless exhaust system.

 

Yamaha 3AJ
Yamaha XT600z 3AJ Tenere
XT600z Tank and Fairing with Chesterfield BYRD decals

Restoration

The XT600Z Tenere Chesterfield restoration began late 2018 after fabricating a number of custom items. I wanted a rally style sump guard with the grilled look I had seen on Ingo’s bike. My dad, a skilled welder, began manufacturing one from an old dog guard and a later 600 framed sump. Coincidentally, during week we were building this, a genuine aftermarket Rikycross grilled sump guard appeared on eBay from Italy. I won that auction and after a brief modification, it fitted the 3AJ. We also manufactured a headlight grill (which I may sell more of one day).

You can find full details of the restoration below. Sounds like a lot of work? I have a full set of restored body work, restored tank, and all the extra trimmings ready to go. You can read more about that here. I will be looking to discount the price of this bolt on kit by purchasing your old body pieces from you. This would be a real easy way to give your Tenere an amazing makeover with very little effort, without having to worry about selling your old pieces online.

I picked up a set of plastics, fairing, tank, clocks, engine bars and head-lights from a man in Hereford. He was building a cafe-racer from his brothers 3AJ. He was auctioning them off on eBay individually so once again, I was forward and made him an offer for the job lot and I would pick them up myself, saving him the hassle of postage. I got a good price for the lot.

The Decals:

  • Find them and similar here (View)

The Tank

  • Dents and damage removed
  • Taps rebuilt and sand blasted (View)
  • Tank cleaned, prepped and sealed with POR15. (View)
  • Additional fuel filters installed below the taps.

The Plastics

  • The fairing was repaired by plastic welding to a high standard.
  • Plastics painted white before the custom decals were applied.
  • Paint and decals sealed in with lacquer.
  • New adhesive heat shield applied. (View)
  • DIY rally plates applied to the side panels. (View)
  • New UFO mudguard (Requires spacers when used with crash bars).
  • Fork Guards (Cable tied on) (View)
  • Hand guards with dual, vented extensions. (View)
  • Acerbis Rear Disc Protector. (View)
  • Slipscreens touring screen. (View)

Seat

  • Lowered.
  • Re-covered with David Lambeths Cover. (View)
  • Seat brackets painted and lacquered.

Extras

  • Fork Gaiters (View)

As I've said previously, the engine had been recently rebuilt by the previous owner already. Therefore I deemed it not necessary to do any work with the engine other than a once over. The bikes original engine has been stored away for another day. It's likely that only the top end is of use. Anyway, that's all for the future.

  • Kick-start already fitted.
  • Satin Black PJ1 engine and case paint. (View)
  • New sprockets and DID chain. (View)

It was decided that the rebuild should be done in completeness and that meant new rims, spokes and tires. I kept the non standard 17 inch rear rim size with a non-descript rim of lesser quality than Excel but still quite adequate.

  • Stainless Hose Front (View)
  • Stainless Hose Rear (View)