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Yamaha TD1C production racer

Published Date

Yamaha TD1C Production racer 1967-1968

The Yamaha TD1C production racer was a major improvement on the previous TD1B machine. Gone was the archaic “clutch on the crankshaft” system which dated back to the Yamaha YDS1 and actually even earlier to the very first Yamaha twin, the YD1 in 1957. The first time this machine was to be seen in Europe was (I believe, as I have no other records) on the Dutch Amsterdam RAI Show in February 1968. The Importers, Messrs “Het Motorpaleis” (the Motorpalace) made quite a job of it. The Yamaha racer was positioned high up for every one to see, with an aluminium foil wrapped circle around it. This machine had the original Yamaha cowling and also the remarkable rear number plate carrier as you can see. I have never seen that before and it could have been that this was a Yamaha “Show” model, which left the country later in order to be exhibited elsewhere.

Rai show


yamaha td1c

“Het Motorpaleis” received 6 TD1C’s for the 1968 season. One of the first was delivered to the Amsterdam Yamaha dealer Ack Bant, who had his shop in the Ostadestraat. The Dutch motorcycle journalist at that time (there was only 1 magazine) ran for a quick view of the machine.

yamaha td1c

The oil under the machine surely did not come out of the brand new Yamaha TD1C!

yamaha td1c

Nearly all Yamaha racers exported were sold minus the cowling as these were expensive and could be made easily locally.

yamaha td1c

The Yamaha TD1C had the same large brakes which were fitted to the earlier models. For 1968 standards, they were “huge” and very impressive.

yamaha td1c

The engine shows how close it is to the standard production item (DS5 and DS6) On the crankcase cover you can see that even the small polished Autolube oilline cover is attached, although the racer runs on a diet of a simple mixture.

yamaha td1c

The kickstarter is still firmly attached but was always removed immediately of course. In contrary to the earlier models with the TD1C the float chambers for the carburettors were now suspended from a stay fitted to the frame tube above. Much better than the older attachment to the rear crankcase bolt (visible under the chain), which resulted in frothing of the fuel due to the heavy vibration of the engine.

yamaha td1c

Yes, the engine vibrated a little! Therefore the engine bolts and nuts were secured with tab washers. The exhaust system was fitted with a spring+bolt to the cylinder and with 2 springs and bolts+nuts on the rear. For some years this remained a saitisfactory solution.

yamaha td1c

Even the r.h. engine cover looks to be a standard part, but is not.

Cees van Dongen on the Yamaha TD1C

cees van dongen with yamaha td1c

The Dutch rider Cees van Dongen also moved from the Yamaha TD1B he rode the previous season to the new machine. This is a nice period picture during a national race in the Netherlands that year (1968). But Cees was absolutely right about the vague road holding qualities of his bike! The well-known Padgett brothers from England attached pieces of lead to the front tubes in order to make the front a little "heavier" !

padgett yamaha td1c

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