Monthly Archives: June 2014

Buell June 30, 2014 posted by

Okay, Maybe Size DOES Matter: 2012 Buell 1190RS Race Bike

Stunning bike, stunning hardware, stunning photography. Move quickly: there’s not much time left on this American superbike from maverick Erik Buell’s reborn EBR.

It’s a tragedy that this came just a few years after Harley euthanized their sportbike division. With a ball-peen hammer. Harley has been resting on its laurels for far too long: they’ve made some cool bikes over the years, but their racing days are more legend than fact at this point, and Buell could have brought back those glories if they’d been allowed to make bikes like the 1190RS.  I’m a fan of classic bikes and classic styling, but seriously: pre-unit gearboxes in 2014 might just be a bit too vintage for me…

2012 Buell 1190RS for sale on eBay

2012 EBR 1190 Race Bike L Front

Erik Buell’s early bikes might have been better off with something lighter than Harley's classic, air-cooled, 45° v-twin lump, but he worked with what he had at the time. The Sportster powertrain is emotive, but leadenly heavy, so Buell went on a weight-saving, mass-centralizing binge, with the frame doubling as a fuel tank, the swingarm holding the oil, a single, rim-mounted brake in place of a dual-disc setup.

An air-cooled twin that’s all torque stuffed into a compact, point-and-squirt machine? Sounds sort of like an American Monster… If you didn’t know any better, you’d think that this kind of bike would fit right in with Harley’s “American Badass” motif. Except: where is the stereo to blast Skynrd out on the open road? The hands-free BlueTooth system for ignoring your boss’ phone calls while you’re out riding in $1,500 worth of Harley-branded gear?

2012 EBR 1190 Race Bike Dash

Luckily, Mr Buell found a far more accommodating partner in Rotax and a far more effective powertrain in their 72° degree, liquid-cooled v-twin. What we have here, is possibly the second-coming of the American Superbike.

2012 EBR 1190 Race Bike R Rear

From the original eBay listing: 2012 EBR 1190RS for Sale

This is an AMA Pro Spec Superbike was last ridden by American rider Mark Miller in 2013 Macau GP
This bike is a closed course only factory superbike.
Is NOT street legal, nor can it be made to be street legal
Bike is located in Portland, OR
Motor & Chassis components were freshened before the Macau weekend and the bike is for sale as it finished that event.
Nothing has been removed or added since the completion of the event and it is for sale as is.
Ohlins Gas Charged Superbike Forks

Ohlins TTX36 Rear Shock
Complete Motec CDL Dash & Data Logger (Logger is configured to record all ecu channels via CAN Bus as well as the following analog inputs: Front & Rear Stroke sensors, oil pressure, air fuel ratio front & rear)
The list of performance upgrades accessories on this bike is much too long to list so I will summarize it “as it was last raced”

This EBR [“Erik Buell Racing”] 1190RS is, at the very least, way better looking than the 1125RR it replaced. It’s still much more "purposeful" than it is "beautiful," unless you count cool-as-hell details like those little carbon brake ducts beautiful.

Then this bike is gorgeous.

As I write this, bidding is around $8,000 with the reserve not yet met. I bet that money would just about cover the cost of the suspension…

-tad

2012 EBR 1190 Race Bike L Side

Okay, Maybe Size DOES Matter: 2012 Buell 1190RS Race Bike
Suzuki June 29, 2014 posted by

Red and White Slingshot: 1989 Suzuki GSX-R 750

1989 Suzuki GSX-R 750 for sale

I know the purists will tell me that the traditional colors for a GSX-R are white and blue but I think this red and white color scheme was the most attractive color scheme of the early GSX-R models. Plus this is a "slingshot" model in the 750cc configuration, which is quickly becoming one of the more sought after bikes.

1989 Suzuki GSX-R 750 for sale one eBay

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For anyone not familiar with the "slingshot" bikes, the term refers to the Mikuni model BST36SS carbs mounted on the bike, which were 36mm diameter and featured vacuum operated slides. The slide cross section resembled the shape of a slingshot.

The slingshot GSXR-750 and GSXR-1110 models were available from 1988-91. While the 1100 series developed a reputation for handling problems, the 750 slingshot bike was considered to be one of the first true repli-racers. The slingshot had an improved handling chassis (due to a thicker frame), new 43mm front forks with new damping rods inside, a full floater monoshock linkage at the back, new 4 piston calipers on the front disc brakes and new 17 inch diameter three spoke wheels.

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But the big change in the slingshot bikes was the re-worked motor. A shorter stroke, bigger valves, 36mm carbs pumping in the go juice and a stronger crank, running in 50% more oil too. Power was up to a claimed 112bhp at 11,000rpm, aided by two air intake ducts set next to the headlights which were one of the first ram air type performance mods seen on bikes.

The last one of these was posted on RSBFS was back in January of this year and went for a cool $8,350. This one has more miles but looks to be in truly excellent condition.

MG

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from the seller's listing:

Up for auction is my 1989 Suzuki GSXR Slingshot 750... All original with only 12k miles Bike is in excellent condition other then blemish on lower right fairing from being knocked over... Just had shop put new plugs and oil change. He told me the carbs need to be cleaned ,but runs good. 2 owner bike with records. Bike is in excellent condition.

Red and White Slingshot: 1989 Suzuki GSX-R 750
Aprilia June 28, 2014 posted by

Size Doesn’t Matter: Titled 2009 Aprilia RS125 in Colorado

Here in the US, there’s always been a limited market for small-displacement bikes. And when it comes to sporting machines, this seems doubly true: in many circles, a GSX-R600 is a “learner’s bike,” and anything smaller might be slapped with the dreaded “girl’s bike” label.

Which is sort of funny: I’ve met some girls who ride. They’re faster than you are.

2009 Aprilia RS125 L Front

But overseas, where high gas prices and tiered licenses make small but sporty bikes a near necessity, the RS125 has a long history of making race-replicas with the emphasis on “race.”

US emissions laws effectively killed the road-going two-stroke here in almost ten years prior, so when it was imported by Aprilia in 2009, the RS125 was not intended to be used on the street, although it came with full road equipment: headlights, turn signals, horn.

2009 Aprilia RS125 Dash

This example is in Colorado and is claimed to have a clear, street-legal title, although you should be sure to check with your local regulations if you live in more draconian California or New York where registration might be an issue.

From the original eBay listing: 2009 Aprilia RS125 for Sale

This is a super low mileage (327miles) bike. Like new.
It is very rare because it is street legal and comes with a CLEAR Colorado TITLE.
It was made street legal using factory Aprilia parts including the factory wiring sub harness.
It is installed with a full Arrow exhaust system.
It has an aftermarket gas cap. The stock pipe and gas cap and two keys come with the bike.

The seller has also included a nice video of the bike being started and ridden.

With just 15hp to play with, corner speed is the name of the game. Aided by a sub-300 pound dry weight, they handle like they’re on rails, in spite of their largely non-adjustable suspension.

2009 Aprilia RS125 Front

Asking price is just a shade under $6,000 which is, interestingly, almost exactly $500 more than the bike’s original MSRP... Depending on your local laws, this could make for a very fun back road carver or track day toy.

-tad

2009 Aprilia RS125 L Side

 

Size Doesn’t Matter: Titled 2009 Aprilia RS125 in Colorado
Triumph June 27, 2014 posted by

Out of the Ashes: 1995 Triumph Daytona Super III

This was really where the modern Triumph began. Basically a mix-and-match of triples and fours stuck into a modular, steel spine-framed chassis that allowed the reborn British company maximum versatility to create different bikes on a common platform at a relatively minimal cost. The 900 in the Daytona was a three-cylinder and the same basic engine also powered the Thunderbird, Trident, Sprint, Tiger, Trophy, and Speed Triple.

1995 Triumph Daytona Super III for sale on eBay

1995 Triumph Daytona III Front Rear

Unfortunately, this modularity came at the price of increased weight. Handling isn’t ideal, and the bikes weren’t competitive in terms of ultimate performance when compared to the Japanese machines of the time. But they exuded character, were reasonably reliable, and allowed Anglophiles to “fly the flag” with pride.

1995 Triumph Daytona III Rear Speedo

While the bike as a whole may have been a bit heavy and slow-steering, the engine was, as the Brits say, “a corker.” Powerful, smooth, and relaxed, it would pull from low and wind out to redline, whichever struck your fancy. Too heavy for track work, it’s an excellent GT. A road-destroying tool for fast street riding, with a protective fairing and reasonable comfort, stable handling, combined with strong brakes and that peach of an engine.

1995 Triumph Daytona III R Front Wheel Engine

From the original eBay listing: 1995 Triumph Daytona Limited Edition Super III

Bike is always garaged. It is a solid 9.5 out of 10. There is 1 tiny blemish a half an inch long on the tank but barely noticeable. The bike is one of 150 world wide. Special features include carbon fiber fender and sub-fender,flat side mikuni carbs, 6 pot calipers, and seat cowling. The motor is a 900cc triple, tuned by Cosworth (of rally car fame). The bike was fully serviced 30 days ago. It is started periodically but not driven to ensure the battery and motor stay in good working order. Tires are fairly new with 95% tread remaining. Though the bike retains all stock pieces (exhaust cans as well) with sale, some tasteful upgrades were made. Micron carbon pipes, handlebar risers, throttle meister cruise control and a beautiful Corbin seat. This is a rare bike in an important time in Triumph's rebirth. It is sure to appreciate, and I will miss it.

I think the styling on these early Bloor-era Triumphs has aged particularly well. Like the Ducati 900SS, they comfortably straddle eras, with design cues both vintage and modern. I prefer the first-gen Speed Triple, but this bike looks great in yellow and would make an excellent get-out-of-town bike for long weekend rides.

-tad

1995 Triumph Daytona III R Tank

Out of the Ashes: 1995 Triumph Daytona Super III
BMW June 27, 2014 posted by

The Right Ingredients, Wrong Colors: 1990 BMW K1

The BMW K1 was one of the Bavarian company's earlier attempts to move into the sport bike/tourer segment. While the paint scheme may at first look like it was done by some primary school students after a trip to McDonalds, it was still a BMW product which meant under the bodywork was some serious engineering.

1990 BMW K1 for sale on eBay

1990 BMW K1 for sale

The 1990 K1 came equipped with a 1000cc four cylinder that sported fuel injection, an early ABS system and aerodynamic bodywork designed to reduce rider fatigue while maximizing top speed cruising. The bodywork even included built-in lockable storage areas. Basically, the big K1 proved to the world that the designers at BMW could be creative.

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As posted last year on RSBFS by Mike, "This is one of those bikes that really deserves a place among the rare and collectable here on RSBFS. It has all of the elements of a future classic: Styling, performance, low production numbers and initially high price tag...This was a technically superior machine that simply fell down flat on the showroom floor."

The last listing on RSBFS for a 1990 K1 in this color scheme was back in May of last year and the bike brought in a cool 13k so there is definitely a market for these bikes.

Opening bid is $7500 and the Buy-It-Now price is a smidge under 12k.

MG

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from the seller:

First time I saw one of these bikes I knew I just had to have one! It has been extremely hard to find one in this great condition! I purchased this bike from the second owner. Bike was reported to have been sold new out of BAVARIAN MOTOR WERKS in Cincinatti to Robert Pitcairen Jr - best known as the attorny for Pete Rose and the Cincinatti Bengals. It has been garage kept and professionally serviced since new. Never abused or damaged, with just over 16,038 actual miles looks like a new bike (or better). Draws crowds whenever it is ridden. Runs, sounds and rides amazing, smooth 5 speed transmission, BMW's proven shaft drive system, triple disc ABS brakes, lots of power from the 1000cc liquid cooled 4 cylinder, handles nice and has exceptional wind protection. All body work very clean and scuff free, windshield clear as are gauge lenses. Heated grips are standard too. Bike comes with special edition FMW touring bags and full cover too. Don't miss out! You will not be dissapointed!

The Right Ingredients, Wrong Colors:  1990 BMW K1
Yamaha June 26, 2014 posted by

Exotic Suspension for the Masses: 1994 Yamaha GTS1000

Only sold for two years in the US, the Yamaha GTS1000 was available from 1993-94. Styling is conservative 90’s Japanese, but without the garish graphics that often distinguish sportbikes of the era and the look is handsome, but so relatively unremarkable that it’s easy to miss the bike’s true standout feature: the forkless front end.

Almost missed that, didn’t you?

1994 Yamaga GTS1000 R Side Front

Conventional telescopic forks have well-known limitations: under braking, they compress and throw a motorcycle’s weight forward, upsetting weight-distribution, and this shift disturbs suspension geometry as well. In addition, the forces being channeled through and being amplified by the tubes means that triple-trees and  headstocks need to be very beefy, increasing weight.

1994 Yamaga GTS1000 L Front End

Plenty of alternatives have been tried since the dawn of motorcycle suspensions, but most have fallen by the wayside: they may improve in some areas, but usually at the cost of increased complexity or reduced steering feel, exactly the kind of things engineers were looking to avoid. They exchanging simple for complicated with no real upside, except as an exotic calling-card for owners of bikes like the Vyrus or Bimota Tesi who don’t mind the additional maintenance expense.

Interestingly, the suspension on this machine provides the best of both worlds: suspension compliance and braking stability as well as relative simplicity and reliability.

1994 Yamaga GTS1000 Dash

Yamaha's "Omega-Framed" GTS1000 was an innovative, ambitious attempt to bring exotic swingarm front suspension technology to the masses. Alternative suspension maverick James Parker, who is still hard at work developing this concept today, licensed his technology to Yamaha and the engine was from Yamaha’s FZR1000, a 1000cc five-valve four cylinder that was detuned for touring duty, although that’s likely easily changed to something approaching the donor bike’s 145hp without too much trouble. The bike also included a great deal of exotic technology like electronic fuel injection, anti-lock brakes, and a catalytic converter.

1994 Yamaga GTS1000 Frame

From the original eBay listing: 1994 Yamaha GTS1000 for Sale

Two words. RARE, Collector! This GTS1000 is in fantastic condition and yes, it's a pretty difficult find. The GTS was only available in the states from 1993 to 1994. It was still available in Europe until 1999. The previous owner took exceptional care of this. If you're a collector or an enthusiast, this would be a great bike. Not to mention, it's still a great bike to ride. For those of you who looked at this listing earlier, I did get the bags and the brakes. Please see pics. The only thing that is any concern is that the ABS is disconnected. I do have a box of all the parts for the ABS (see pics). The previous owner disconnected them as he didn't like ABS. Overall, this bike is in great condition and would be a wonderful motorcycle to have in any collection.

Reviews at the time suggest that the suspension performed as advertised. Unfortunately, while the bike was innovative, it was very expensive and the de-fanged powerplant combined with a surprisingly limited range to muddy the waters: exactly what was this bike for? The main advantages of this design were really wasted on a heavy sport-touring bike like this, and it seems odd to combine relatively primitive ABS with a suspension designed to provide increased braking ability at the limit.

Poor sales killed the bike after just two years, although it sold until 1999 in other markets. I’m not sure these are really any sort of huge investment opportunity, but they have a strong cult following and parts for the engine should be readily available, although bodywork and suspension bits could be a problem. As an affordable sport-touring mount, it’d be hard to beat, so if you’re looking for a weird bike with reliability and subtlety, this interestingly technical machine could represent an opportunity you never knew existed.

-tad

1994 Yamaga GTS1000 L Side

 

Exotic Suspension for the Masses: 1994 Yamaha GTS1000

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