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  • VIN, Model, Help

    Hi, I am new to the motorcycle lifestyle. My husband and I just bought our first one a few weeks ago. It is a 1981 Yamaha XS1100SH I think haven't really found a way to tell which model it is. The title we have does not specify the exact one it just says XS1100. I just found out today that the VIN hasn't always been 17 characters (born in '93), but used to be 9 digits. My husband went to register it today, and apparently our DMV and the state of IA forgot that VINs used to be shorter. The lady at the DMV sent a photo of the VIN to someone that has a higher position in our capitol, and they said it was invalid which it is not. If they don't accept the VIN, how can I get like a verification letter from Yamaha stating that is the VIN, and it is valid? I also went to get quotes from insurance agencies, and half of them I couldn't put the VIN in because of it being 9 digits. How do you go about insuring if it doesn't recognize it? Sorry for all the silly questions I've never owned a vehicle that was manufactured in the 70's-80's. Thank you in advance for helping.

  • #2
    WELCOME to the forum

    So from what you are describing the Number on the Engine (right side behind the cylinders EZ to see) -and- the Number on the Steering Head (normally the same unless the frame or engine has been swapped out), starts with 4R0 - xxxxxx ?

    DMV should give you a card or verification paper that any police officer can verify the Serial Number. Or, you'd think the DMV person would go outside and look for themselves.

    Sometimes this is a minor problem until DMV sees the error of their ways. Also, for Insurance just give them the number on the Engine / Frame assuming they match. If not what takes precedence is the number on the steering head (sticker on the left side of the steering head)

    Good Luck and WELCOME to XS11

    Jeff

    i'm sure yours isn't the only 1970's vehicle in the state of Iowa so hopefully they can figure that out quickly without more hassles for you.



    Serial Number & Model Identification
    US Models:

    Year Model Serial # Color(s)

    1978 XS1100E 2H7-000101 Macho Maroon
    1979 XS1100F 2H7-020101 Magenta Red, Indigo Blue
    1979 XS1100SF 3H3-000101 Carmine Red, Black Gold
    1980 XS1100G 3H5-000101 Diamond Silver, New Ruby Red
    1980 XS1100SG 3J6-000101 Black Red, New Ruby Red
    1980 XS1100LG 4H3-000101 New Yamaha Black
    1981 XS1100H 4R1-000101 Indigo Blue
    1981 XS1100SH 4R0-000101 Black Blue, Cardinal Red
    1981 XS1100LH 4W1-000001 New Yamaha Black
    1982
    XJ1100J
    10M-000101
    New Yamaha Black, New Ruby Red



    Non-US Models:
    Year Model Serial # Color(s) Countries

    1978
    XS1100 2H9-000101 Macho Maroon Europe
    1978
    XS1100E 2H8-000101 Macho Maroon

    1978
    XS1100E 2H9-100101 Macho Maroon Oceania
    1979
    XS1100 2H9-020101 New Pearl White Europe
    1979
    XS1100F 2H7-110101 Indigo Blue, Magenta Red Canada
    1979
    XS1100F 2H9-110101 Magenta Red Oceania
    1979
    XS1100SF 3H4-000101 Black Gold, Carmine Red Canada
    1980
    XS1100G 2H9-130101 Diamond Silver, New Ruby Red Europe
    1980
    XS1100G 3U7-000101 Diamond Silver Canada
    1980
    XS1100G 3X1-000101 Diamond Silver Oceania
    1980
    XS1100P 4H9-000001 White Others
    1980
    XS1100SG 3U9-000101 Black Red, New Ruby Red Canada
    1981
    XS1100H 3X0 New Yamaha Black Europe
    1981
    XS1100H 3X1-003101 Black Red Oceania
    1981
    XS1100H 4T1-000101 Indigo Blue Canada
    1981
    XS1100LH 4W2-000001 New Yamaha Black Canada
    1981
    XS1100RH 5N5-000101 New Yamaha Black Oceania
    1981
    XS1100S 5K7-010101 New Yamaha Black Europe
    1981
    XS1100SH 4T0-000101 Blue Black, Cardinal Red Canada
    1982
    XJ1100J 11G-000101 New Yamaha Black, New Ruby Red Canada
    1982
    XS1100 2H9-140101 New Yamaha Black Europe
    1982
    XS1100 Police 5H4-000101 New Yamaha Black, White Oceania
    1983
    XJ1100K 11G-010101 Sparkle Red Canada
    1984
    XJ1100ML 11G-100101 Blue Black Canada
    Last edited by JeffH; 07-30-2021, 04:25 PM.
    78' XS1100 E
    78' XS1100 E
    78' XS1100 E

    '73 Norton 850 Commando
    '99 Triumph Sprint ST
    '02 G-Wing GL1800

    Comment


    • #3
      Thank you. Yes the number starts with 4R0- so it is the SH model thank you. The DMV is still checking to see if the vin is valid. The lady said it could take minutes to days.

      Comment


      • #4
        Why don't you show them the Vin number list as given by JeffH. There is a more official looking list here: http://www.xs11.com/faqs/153-serial-...ry-colors.html
        Maybe that helps..
        3x XS1100: 3H3 1979 customized, 2H9 chain drive endurace racer, 3X0 fuel injected turbo bike
        Benelli 750 Sei 1973
        MV Agusta Brutale 910R 2006
        Triumph 1200 Speed Trophy 1991, Triumph 1200 1993
        Kawasaki Z1 '73 green yellow, Z1A '74 brown orange, Z1B '75 red, KZ900 A4 '76 green, Kawasaki Z1 ยด73 track bike.
        Yamaha MT-09 Tracer 2015 dark grey

        Comment


        • #5
          In Michigan, you get ridculous service in the Detroit metro area Secretary of State offices.

          If you go to a rural office, there is no wait and the people are friendly and helpful.

          Maybe you could try another DMV office in a rural area?
          -Mike
          _________
          '79 XS1100SF 20k miles
          '80 XS1100SG 42k miles
          '81 XS1100H Venturer 35k miles
          '79 XS750SF 20k miles
          '85 Honda V65 Magna ~7k miles
          '84 Honda V65 Magna 48k miles (parts bike)
          '86 Yamaha VMAX 7k miles

          Previous: '68 Motoguzzi 600cc + '79 XS750SF 22k miles +'84 Honda V65

          Comment


          • #6
            I had one with 9 digits. every year or two I'd get a notice from Maryland DMV or my insurance company about it being invalid and I'd have to ride the bike there, show DMV again and everything was fine. Got tired of it and sold the bike
            "If A equals success, then the formula is: A = X + Y + Z. X is work. Y is play. Z is keep your mouth shut." - Albert Einstein

            "Illegitimi non carborundum"-Joseph W. "Vinegar Joe" Stilwell



            1980 LG
            1981 LH

            Comment


            • #7
              I also met with such a problem when I wanted to insure my bike. My home insurance couldn't offer me coverage for everything I wanted, so I started looking for another insurance company. In the end, I have chosen this one https://simplebikeinsurance.com/guid...eft-insurance/ as it met all my requirements, especially the price and the theft policies, as in my town there are many cases of bike theft, and I don't want unpleasant situations.
              Last edited by Kevin121; 12-21-2021, 09:32 AM.

              Comment


              • #8
                Maybe AAA could help with their title services. Most of the people I have seen in those offices were pretty knowledgeable.
                1979 XS1100 Special
                1980 XS1100 Std parts bucket
                1987 ZL1000 Eliminator
                1976 XS750D Project in waiting

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Woody20 View Post
                  Hi, I am new to the motorcycle lifestyle. My husband and I just bought our first one a few weeks ago. It is a 1981 Yamaha XS1100SH I think haven't really found a way to tell which model it is. The title we have does not specify the exact one it just says XS1100. I just found out today that the VIN hasn't always been 17 characters (born in '93), but used to be 9 digits. My husband went to register it today, and apparently our DMV and the state of IA forgot that VINs used to be shorter. The lady at the DMV sent a photo of the VIN to someone that has a higher position in our capitol, and they said it was invalid which it is not. If they don't accept the VIN, how can I get like a verification letter from Yamaha stating that is the VIN, and it is valid? I also went to get quotes from insurance agencies, and half of them I couldn't put the VIN in because of it being 9 digits. How do you go about insuring if it doesn't recognize it? Sorry for all the silly questions I've never owned a vehicle that was manufactured in the 70's-80's. Thank you in advance for helping.
                  you state you have a title. What does it show? If the title from another state? If the title is valid I don't really see the problem. Can you tell us more about that?
                  2 - 80 LGs bought one new
                  81 LH
                  02 FXSTB Nighttrain
                  Jim

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    welcome to the older bike crowd. I have had that issue with registration and titling in Michigan and in Texas, where the folks at the office did not know how to handle the older numbers. What worked for me in Michigan, was to find the answer on the Sec of State web page and then print it off. If the answer was not in one of FAQ's they used to have a place to ask a question like; what if I a have the old style VIN that is less than 16 digits? I would print off the answer and bring it in with me. I had that <16 digit answer, the how to get a title with only bill of sale, and a few others that I keep handy. When I went in I had my folder and if there was issue I handed them the sheet and then they would either work it from there, or call over senior person and they worked it out.
                    Good luck with the XS
                    I have a bike and I am not afraid to use it

                    Comment

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