Monthly Archives: October 2015

Suzuki October 31, 2015 posted by

Quarter-Liter Gamma: 1988 Suzuki RGV250Γ SP VJ21 for Sale

1988 Suzuki RGV250 SP R Side

Unfortunately, today's tasty little two-stroke Suzuki RGV250Γ SP is short on photographs. It's another of the raft of recent imports from Japan, and details are scarce, but the price may have you reaching for your mouse anyway.

The RGV250Γ replaced the RG250 in 1988, swapping out that bike's parallel-twin for a more modern v-twin that eventually found its way into the Aprilia RS250, although Aprilia made a number of changes to their version. On paper, the new baby Gamma looked very much like its rivals from Honda and Yamaha, like they were all peeking at each others' essays during final exams...

1988 Suzuki RGV250 SP Dash

Nestled in between the spars of a lightweight, aluminum beam frame, the little 249cc, 90° v-twin made about 55hp and was mated to a six-speed gearbox. Front wheel was 17" although the rear was a slightly inconvenient 18" in size. This bike is claimed to be an SP or "Sport Production" model and should also feature adjustable suspension front and rear.

The headlight on the RGV is mounted flush in the fairing and looks less like an afterthought compared to something like the Honda RS250R and I particularly like the text on the tail section: considering the GSX-R "Slingshot" bikes were named for their carburetors, I'm guessing this is simply a marketing link to those models as opposed to a reference to any mechanical specification. It's also good to know this is a Real Sprinter bike, not just some fake knock-off...

From the original eBay listing: 1988 Suzuki RGV250Γ SP VJ21 for Sale

In 1988 Suzuki released two stroke V twin racer replica.

At that era, Japanese economy was too good, so they released

new model more often than every year.

This is SP model, so it has adjustable front and rear suspension, 

close ratio 6 speed transmission and solo seat cover.

Ran when I transport from Tokyo to Yokohama.

I just received it and not check yet.

I'll take pics and inspect it and add info.

13977 Km = 8714 miles

Was very clean when it left Japan but I found a scratch on right side cowl.

Other than that, this is very clean. Still shining.

Had no leak but found fuel under petcock.

Please see pics.

Real SP model are very rare, I should start with $5000... too late..

1988 Suzuki RGV250 SP Clean

It's worth noting that the shot of the left side does show fluids spilled down the frame which have been helpfully cleaned off in the close up. The question is why you'd photograph a bike you plan to sell before cleaning it. Really this listing could use a few more shots, but I think we've got enough to tell that this is a decent, well-used example of a rare, collectible model: the paint is shiny and the plastics are scuffed in places, but not cracked, and all the important bits that make the bike stop and go appear to be in good shape.

Bidding is currently up just north of $4,000 with a little more than 24 hours left on the auction. If you're a collector, this probably needs a good bit of work to get it into shape, but everything's there and a fresh set of fasteners and a touch up of some brackets will do wonders for the appearance. If you're a rider, well the cosmetic wear and tear shouldn't bother you too much. Assuming the bike runs as advertised, this could be a good buy.

-tad

1988 Suzuki RGV250 SP L Side

Quarter-Liter Gamma: 1988 Suzuki RGV250Γ SP VJ21 for Sale
Kawasaki October 30, 2015 posted by

Hey Nineteen – 1996 Kawasaki ZX-7R

Way back when, in '97 - no actually 1996, Kawasaki transitioned from the ZXR750 to the ZX-7R, and incorporated the steady evolution and innovation from the factory and AMA Superbike race teams.  Though the model continued until 2003, the 90's were good years for the ZX-7R, Scott Russell winning the AMA Superbike in 1992 and WSBK in 1993, and Doug Chandler winning the AMA in 1996 and 1997, both on factory-supported Team Muzzy machines.

20151029 1996 kawasaki zx-7r right

1996 Kawasaki ZX-7R for sale on eBay

20151029 1996 kawasaki zx-7r left front

Based on the 748cc DOHC inline four, the ZX-7R has 112 hp available.  Ignition is electronic and the four carburetors are 38mm.  The twin aluminum spars look massive but are light in weight, and the rake and trail numbers ensure stability.  The rear swingarm is also alloy, with fully adjustable monoshock.  The 43mm inverted forks are also fully adjustable.  Good size brakes - 320mm front disks with 6-piston calipers, and 230mm rear.  The angular endurance fairing is great looking and provides ram-air to the engine.

20151029 1996 kawasaki zx-7r binnacle

20151029 1996 kawasaki zx-7r tank

Offered by a closet collector, the ZX-7R was bought because it was super nice and then restored pretty much to perfection.  Centered around the bodywork, the colors, and the decals are smoothed into the clear coat.  Not quite sure about the originality of the paint scheme or whether that's even important, but it does look great.  The bike appears to have a -RR tail fairing, but perhaps the single seat was an option in '96.  Neat color-matched Arai is part of the deal.  Other details are mentioned in the eBay auction:

I have a detailed list (several pages) of all the restorations performed for the new owner.  As a multiple Sport Bike purchaser, I am EXTREMELY picky when it comes to the exterior fuel tank condition.  This tank is 100% dent-free.  The in-laid and clear-coated "Ninja" decals are flawless and their color is vibrant and brilliant.  Other upgraded items include complete frame-up painting, cowling-matched painting, decal clear-coating, powder-coating, overall restoration, tire-hugger kit, numerous carbon fiber components including frame sliders and handlebar column cover, rear fender eliminator kit, integrated rear blinker kit, cowling-integrated front turn signals, ZX7R handle grip sliders, smoked windshield, Pro Grip Carbon Fiber "look" tank protector, carbon fiber top tank protector, checkered flag graphics on underside cowling, and upgraded Yoshimura RS-3 Stainless exhaust.  The tires are brand-new Dunlop Sportmax (Front 120/70ZR-17 and Rear 190/50ZR-17) that have less than 47 miles on them.

20151029 1996 kawasaki zx-7r right fairing

20151029 1996 kawasaki zx-7r left tank

The cosmetic and mechanical restoration work hidden by the fairing is also detailed, and is comprehensive:

The parts break-down for the restoration included disassembling the cycle to the bare frame for painting and powder-coating, engine modification services, shaving holes in the tail section for the blinker elimination kit, re-building the carbs, re-finishing the frame/swing-arm/rear sub-frame, sand-blasting, re-painting and re-finishing the front and rear wheel assemblies, re-finishing the rear brake holder, fork tubes, foot rest brackets, and sub-links, re-finishing the tail-section, adding the rear tire-hugger package, installing new battery, replacing all 4 spark plugs, adding a new "quick acceleration chain and sprocket, timing chain, timing chain guide, engine mount nuts and bolts, 16 new valve seals, cylinder head gasket cover, O-ring heads, clutch cover gasket, transmission cover gasket, oil pan gasket, spring-leaf, oil cooler rotator pump, rotor pump, oil pump body, oil filter O-ring, breather cover gasket, various seals, wheel bearing kits both front and rear, and mounting and balancing wheels.  Lastly, the entire engine was inspected and rebuilt with new cylinder base gaskets, new cylinder head gaskets, and piston ring sets.

20151029 1996 kawasaki zx-7r left front wheel

20151029 1996 kawasaki zx-7r left rear wheel

The signature of Scott Russell ( on both frame beams ) is a cool addition to a nice collector bike.  Well used at some point in its 21,000 mile history, though it's hard to see it now.  While it would be sweet to put this 19 year-old back into service, an occasional ride to a show or fan corral might be a better choice.  Probably'd make the previous owner a lot happier too...

20151029 1996 kawasaki zx-7r right seat

-donn

Hey Nineteen – 1996 Kawasaki ZX-7R
Yamaha October 29, 2015 posted by

Purely Sporty – 1989 Yamaha FZR-400

Applying technology from the bigger bikes in their line-up for the Japanese domestic market, the big four started a friendly competition among smaller bikes that spread back across the oceans where the big bikes ruled.  The Yamaha FZR-400 did well in roundups of the racey smaller bikes, lightweight but not twitchy, suspension compliant but in control, the EXUP-equipped 400 with a 14,000 rpm redline but wider torque band.

20151028 1989 yamaha fzr400 right

1989 Yamaha FZR-400 for sale on eBay

20151028 1989 yamaha fzr400 left front

Introduced in 1986, the FZR-400 received the electric EXhaust Ultimate Power valve in late 1988, electrically changing the collector volume to enhance flow and stretch the midrange power.  The 16-valve inline four was good for 60 hp and 29 ft-lbs of torque, great numbers per liter.  Two aluminum DeltaBox girders support the engine, with 41mm  forks and aluminum swingarm with monoshock at the rear.  Brakes are oversized 298mm front and 210mm rear.  Endurance-racing styled full fairing has monoposto hard cover for the pillion seat.

20151028 1989 yamaha fzr400 binnacle  20151028 1989 yamaha fzr400 front

Looking nicely cared-for with its nearly 16,000 miles, this FZR boasts new chain, sprockets, tires, and battery.  Byline of the auction says the fairing are not perfect but the imperfections are not apparent.  Just a few modifications, low-profile front signals, and it looks like pillion footpegs have been excessed.  Period Yoshimura muffler.  From the eBay auction:

I have owned this bike for 15yrs and have ridden it very little,  It has always been garaged.  New parts: new tires,   Battalax 090 150x60x18 & S 20 110x70x71,  new Progressive fork springs with new seals.  I have changed to steel braids on front brakes, pads are at 50%.  Zero Gravity dark windscreen.  Chain and sprocket upgrade to 520. brand new battery.  Oil and filter and air filter serviced. changed coolant.  Yosh slip-on,EXUP model.

20151028 1989 yamaha fzr400 left rear  20151028 1989 yamaha fzr400 left rear wheel

The FZR-400 was beautifully executed, and buyers paid a 20% price premium over the competition.  That penalty has evaporated over time, but the Yamaha is still the class of the smaller sportbikes.  Sized to that almost any rider can get on, and performing so that experts and novices can appreciate it, the FZR-400 is a great starter or keeper.  This one appears to have been well loved and maintained.  The reserve has already been met with several bids and 5 days to go...

-donn

Purely Sporty – 1989 Yamaha FZR-400
Aprilia October 28, 2015 posted by

Zoombaaahhh – 1999 Aprilia RS250 Cup

Not your mid-morning workout, but a race-prepared two-stroke with a 12,000 rpm redline.  Recently brought out of storage and re-bodied, this bike has spent its entire life at the track, and though well used, still has a lot of fun left in it.

20151027 1999 aprilia rs250 cup right

1999 Aprilia RS250 Cup for sale on eBay

20151027 1999 aprilia rs250 cup left

Meant for racing and likely never titled, the RS250 Cup is missing lighting and reflectors for the road. The 250cc v-twin from a Suzuki RGV-250, after preparation by Aprilia, is good for 73 hp at 11,900 rpm.  The small machine appears to have a bigger bike's twin-spar aluminum frame, with asymmetrical aluminum swingarm.  The front fork is inverted 40mm, fully adjustable, as is the monoshock rear.  Plenty of stopping power provided by the 298 mm front disks, and 220 mm rear.

20151027 1999 aprilia rs250 cup binnacle

20151027 1999 aprilia rs250 cup front

Presented by MotoGPWerks a California preparer, not much history is shown in the auction, though the odometer shows just over 7,000 miles.  There is no cruising at the track, but this bike shows just a few scrapes on the swingarm.  Re-bodied with fiberglass from Airtech, this RS250 looks fresh, and the engine has only a few hours on it.  Nice spares kit.  From the eBay auction:

Fairings have been replaced with airtech GP style
Pistons and rings were done 10-12 hours ago (old pistons in the spares)
Overall the bike goes very well,
Been in storage for 2 years so the carbs were rebuilt,new battery and brake fluid as well as quick look over .
-always ran 800t motul
- old school quick shifter
-EGT in both exhausts
spares include, pipes, gaskets, sprockets, jets, airbox, fender and so on as per photos
setup notes and manual also

20151027 1999 aprilia rs250 cup left front wheel

20151027 1999 aprilia rs250 cup right rear wheel

There are a lot of good reasons to have your go-fast fun on the track rather than the street ( it's safer to go all-out at the track than 7/10th's on the street ), and your road bike will appreciate it as well.  The RS250 has a long history on tracks all over the world, and counts many MotoGP riders as alumni.  While it would be nice to have a creampuff in race replica decals, you can add more as you go.  This RS250 Cup might be a better way to get into racing or track days...

-donn

Zoombaaahhh – 1999 Aprilia RS250 Cup
Yamaha October 27, 2015 posted by

More JDM Madness: 1989 Yamaha TZR250 3MA for Sale

1989 Yamaha TZR250 3MA R Side Rear

With many lightweight sportbikes now flirting with the edge of 25-year import rules, I expect we'll see more and more bikes like this Yamaha TZR250 up for sale in the next couple of years. Road and track weapons designed to keep pace with Honda, Suzuki, and Kawasaki in the viciously-competitive 250cc class, the 1989-1990 TZR250 featured an interesting reversed-head two-stroke parallel-twin, with the carburetors mounted on the front of the engine. This gave them easy access to cool, dense air and, more importantly, gave the exhausts a clear shot out the tail of the bike. The expansion chambers required for two-stroke performance create significant packaging challenges, and this design meant the bike didn't need to route them under or around the engine.

1989 Yamaha TZR250 3MA L Side

As expected, the TZR250 made bang-on the Japanese government-mandated 45hp limit, with plenty of extra available once de-restricted. With just 308lbs to haul around, including fluids, these are seriously nimble machines that require rider involvement and reward skill in a way that bigger bikes can't hope to match.

1989 Yamaha TZR250 3MA Carbs

These 3MA parallel-twins do have a bit of a reputation for being unreliable. But owners forums claim that's mostly a myth, and that they're just as reliable, or unreliable, as other two-stroke sportbikes of the period. As to why this particular design didn't last, it's not necessarily that the design didn't work, it's that the layout ultimately didn't have enough of a benefit to continue development, and Yamaha switched to a v-twin in 1991 to keep pace with Honda and Suzuki.

1989 Yamaha TZR250 3MA Gauges

 

From the original eBay listing: 1989 Yamaha TZR250 3MA for Sale

Up for sale is "1989 YAMAHA TZR250 3MA" rare 2stroke sports!!

The bike is imported from Japan and without title now, but I can get it with Extra charge.

Good running condition but needs carb setting from 5000rpm more up.

I'm guessing main jets or needles are too big so too rich.

Can through all gears.

Bike has new battery.

Electrics all work.

Brakes are work well.

Used motorcycle with scratches and wear as 26 ages.

Have hairline cracks and chips on cowls, so look carefully all pictures and video.

And then, feel free email me for more info on this bike!

Speedo meter is looks original but actual mile is unknown.

Doesn't have Air Cleaners.

Will needs new tires.

Sold as is no warranty.

Thank you for looking!!

Well hey man, if you think it's running rich, maybe fitting those missing air cleaners might be a good idea? The seller also includes the usual start up and walk around video, which is always appreciated. Also, note the tach that doesn't even bother with numbers below 3,000rpm...

Like so many of these little two-strokes that have shown up recently, this is no display piece, but appears to be in very nice physical condition. And while I'd worry about sourcing body panels and non-consumable parts, piston kits and the like are still available for these, so keeping them running shouldn't be impossible with a bit of patience and effort. After making sure that the factory airbox and filter are present and accounted for, obviously...

1989 Yamaha TZR250 3MA L Side Rear

If you happen to live somewhere a bike like this can be titled and ridden on the road, it would make a very fun addition to your stable and sure to start conversations every time you stop to top off! Which, considering the fairly dismal mileage these get, should be pretty often...

-tad

1989 Yamaha TZR250 3MA R Side Unfaired

More JDM Madness: 1989 Yamaha TZR250 3MA for Sale
Kawasaki October 27, 2015 posted by

A Look Back at A Look Back – 1993 Kawasaki ZR-1100

In the early 1990's, Kawasaki had a nostalgic feeling for the 70's, when the ground-pounding Z-1 ruled the tar pits.  Standard bikes ( now called naked ) had a short-lived resurgence in the 550, 750 and 1100 cc models, with a 400 cc Japan-only variant.  An editor at Sport Rider went through an orange/burgundy 1100 from stem to stern, blueprinting and releasing captive performance as he went.  20-plus years on and again available, this ZR-1100 is a super-quick trip back to the future.

20151026 1993 kawasaki zr-1100 right front

1993 Kawasaki ZR-1100 for sale on eBay

20151026 1993 kawasaki zr-1100 left rear

20151026 1993 kawasaki zr-1100 right rear

Starting with the DOHC but 2-valve 1100, 1 mm was milled from the cylinder head, increasing the compression ratio to 10.5 to 1.  This led to a flurry of hot-rodding with slightly larger carburettors, ported and polished valve head, re-ground cams, and Kerker exhaust.  Unfortunately, they did not publish dyno results, but an epilogue to the build tells of the engine being bored and sleeved to 1197 cc and claimed 113 horses with a more restrictive Motad exhaust.  Handling was also addressed with a comprehensive rebuilding of the forks and Works Performance shocks in back.  As with any hot rod, a wider rear tire was desired, so the wheel was widened 1" by a San Francisco specialist.

20151026 1993 kawasaki zr-1100 left engine

20151026 1993 kawasaki zr-1100 binnacle

The proud owner has included the article from Sport Rider magazine, and says in the eBay auction:

This amazing bike has a cool history. At one time this was part of a private collection/bike museum in Nashville TN. As you will see in the photos this model was featured in Sport Rider magazine. Please refer to the articles for all the details. The last one that you see has all the info about the upgrades that were done to this bike. 

Motorcycles are supposed to be fun and this one simply oozes with it! A joy to the eye and a thrill to ride. A labor of love, this bike represents countless hours expended by many skilled craftsmen. Over $10,000 were also spent on the enhancements alone to this rare and unique piece. A truly collectible bike, it is open for bids to the discriminating buyer. Don't miss your chance to own this piece of history.

It has been well cared for and loved. The tires are newer as well as the battery. Everything works and it runs perfect. Video available for interested buyers.

Included extras: Custom Corbin Jump seat. Matching helmet.

20151026 1993 kawasaki zr-1100right front wheel

20151026 1993 kawasaki zr-1100 right seat

Looking fabulous, this retro-rocket is ready for the boulevard.  Heavy and challenging to aim, nice chrome though, including the full exhaust and very 1973 front fender.  K&N filters are good for freeing up the intake and look cool.  There appear be two Corbin seats, one with ZR embroidery and one with passenger backrest, a good thing with all that torque.  An Arai helmet with coordinated adult graphics is part of the deal, too.  For the price of a stock creampuff you could have a professionally customized bike.  Known as the Zephyr in some markets until Ford's copyright lawyers got wind of it, the ZR-1100 is a better name.  Calling it the Zephyr would be just too retro...

20151026 1993 kawasaki zr-1100 left side cover

-donn

A Look Back at A Look Back – 1993 Kawasaki ZR-1100

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