That's interesting. Thanks for the info.If you know someone who is a Japanese resident, you can buy a bike and register it under their name. That takes some trust on their part, no stranger is going to do that for you. And unless you have Permanent Residency, have a work visa or something other than a tourist visa, then it isn't possible to register a bike under your own name and get insurance for it.
I have a friend I made the first time I came to Japan. He has a couple bikes and the last time I was there he said I could ride one of his.
Super trusting of him
Yeah! Lots of them. A lot of time I couldn't ID them. "Cool bike! What is it?"Some pretty cool bikes over there that aren't available in North America.
EDIT: Also Lightcycle, I'm really enjoying your stories from Japan. If you ever get back to Toronto and you're free, I'm open to meet up and chat about how awesome Japan and riding in Japan is.