Monthly Archives: March 2017

Ducati March 23, 2017 posted by

Soft Baggage – 1998 Ducati 900 SS/CR

Every so often a future classic pops up, but with too many niggling questions to be worth pursuing.  A lightweight air-cooled desmodue, the 1998 Ducati 900 SS/CR is a pending collectible and great rider.  With not much of anywhere to hide mysteries, this CR appears free of damage and the long-past salvage title might make it possible.

1998 Ducati 900 SS/CR for sale on eBay

  

1998 was the last year of the carburetted and square headlight supersports.  The 85 hp 904 cc twin was mated to a 6-speed trans and nicely equipped with Showa inverted forks and monoshock, and generously sized Brembo brakes.  The Cafe Racer had the upper-only fairing with an un-cramped riding position and raised clip-ons.

  

Treated to the 944 cc pistons and accompanying engine work, this Texas Ducati has an unusual 41mm carburettor upgrade as well.  These changes should result in close to 100 hp, and has recent maintenance, as the owner relates in the eBay auction:

Clean, well maintained 1998 Ducati 900SS CR.  Owner since 2004.  Bike has roughly 1000 miles on Fast by Ferracci 944cc high compression overbore kit.  Carburetors have been upgraded to Keihin 41mm FCRs.  Vance and Hines carbon fiber exhaust completes the package.  This bike sounds mean and has the performance to back it up.  The bike has been recently serviced with all fluids changed, ignition system upgraded, racing plugs and wires installed, and a fresh set of Michelin Pilot Powers mounted.  Receipts available.  The bike does have a salvage title.  The previous owner bought the bike at a police auction and restored it cosmetically.  To my knowledge, this bike has never been down or sustained any major damage.  The bike has been in my care for the past 12 years.  This beautiful bike is ready for some lucky buyer to take her home...

  

Under attack by the Monster and with a re-design coming, only a few hundred Supersports were brought this way in 1998.  This CR has had the benefit of a long-term owner, and shows nicely for just over 11,000 miles.  An afternoon with our friend Nev-R-Dull and a sticker-ectomy would only complement the rugged good looks and performance.  After inspection, it would be worth checking with DMV about the implications of a salvage title in your state, but it might put an otherwise out-of-reach machine back in the ballpark...

-donn

Soft Baggage – 1998 Ducati 900 SS/CR
Egli March 22, 2017 posted by

Frame Game: 1976 Honda EGLI Kit on eBay!

I KNOW what you are thinking... since when did RSBFS start pimping push bikes??! Yes, I can see that this bike is missing a few bits that would make it a full motorcycle. But the bits that are there are truly worthy of notice. Pay attention - this is an opportunity that you will not likely see again.

1976 Egli Honda CB750 Roller on eBay

Egli was founded by Swiss motorcycle racer Fritz Egli in the mid 1960s. Initially, Fritz modified existing motorcycles for competition. As Fritz got deeper into racing, his modifications became more sophisticated. Soon he was racing on a chassis of his own making. When Egli frames started winning hill climb events, people took notice. The original Egli frame was based on a Vincent Black Shadow. Today, Egli is much better known for work encasing Japanese engines in strange and functional steel creations. Consider Egli the Swiss cousin to Bimota - offering frame and bodywork kits with some assembly required.

We don't see very many Egli machines on RSBFS - these are very rare productions. In fact, the last Egli we posted was in 2014, was located in Switzerland, and had an opening bid of $55,000 USD. Given the kit bike nature, each machine is slightly different and could be considered a one-off, custom build. That is, if you can find one for sale. But never before have we witnessed an un-assembled roller chassis. This is a first. And check out that "backbone spine as oil tank" feature built right into the frame - how cool is that?

From the seller:
For your consideration is a very rare, original 1976 Egli-Honda CB750 chassis! From what I can see the frame and its components have NEVER BEEN USED! Original Michelin tires made in France with full tread, all brake pads are brand new, no marks or scoring on the frame or any bolts showing a motor was ever mounted to the frame, and no scoring whatsoever on the disc rotors! Both front and rear Brembo masters are completely dry. This gem has Marzocchi front suspension, Koni rear shocks, Lockheed calipers, Swiss made EGLI-VINCENT wheels, Brembo masters, Verlicchi clip-ons, billet aluminum rear set mounts and rear engine mounts, Rhino triple clamp, and a nickel plated frame that WEIGHS 17.5 LBS!! This roller is light! The original rear fender appears new and the underside is extremely clean...zero dirt or nicks. The gas tank and seat are in very good condition. They show some age. There is a small crack...approx 1".. in the fiberglass rear section (see pics) The seat has one very small tear on the underside about 1/2 inch long, otherwise the seat padding is in fantastic condition for its age! I have some extra unpainted fairings that may fit on the 750, but I'm not certain.

More from the seller:
This is truly an amazing find. It has been sitting for quite some time and the frame has oxidation on it. The whole bike could use a good cleaning..I only cleaned the fiberglass, nothing else. There is surface rust in some areas. PLEASE ZOOM IN AND CHECK OUT ALL PICTURES CLOSELY. The aluminum gas cap wont turn, and I don't want to force it. I believe it is stuck on the steel ring on the tank. Inside the oil tank there is some surface rust, but nothing metal rescue couldn't handle. I'm trying to devulge everything I know. I don't want the buyer to have any surprises,. Please ask questions. I spoke to Egli Motorrad and they confirmed that this kit was sold to a buyer in the United States on 11-15-1976. I have a letter of authenticity signed by the man himself, FRITZ EGLI, which will be included in the sale. (see pic) Also included is a parts list packet with exploded views. There is no choice for Bill of Sale so I marked CLEAR. ****I DO NOT HAVE A TITLE SINCE THESE WERE USED FOR RACING...BILL OF SALE ONLY. ****

So what might this beauty look like when completed? This is not a picture of the actual bike, but another Egli Honda CB750 build I found on the internet looked like this:

So do I still need to detail how rare an opportunity this might be? Sure, there is some work involved (actually, a ton of work). But the end result is both artwork and performance; a truly custom sport bike that makes a mockery of modern day "customs." It will take a special buyer to take this and create a what-could-have-been type of bike, but I have no doubt it will be worth the effort. Others think so as well, given that the current bidding sits just under $5k with a reserve still in place. There are only a few days to go on this unicorn, so check it out here before it's gone; you're not likely to see another like it again.

MI

Honda March 22, 2017 posted by

All You Really Need: 1990 Honda CB-1 for Sale

No one is arguing that we don't live in an era where "learner bikes" aren't very sophisticated machines, but no matter how impressive the electronics found on modern small-displacement bikes may be, and no matter stone-axe reliable the mechanicals are, there's something distinctly uninspiring about the weedy exhaust note of a single-cylinder KTM RC390. It's a great motorcycle in pretty much every way, especially considering the affordable price-point, but it definitely doesn't sound sexy. Something like this Honda CB-1 however, might appeal to both new and experienced motorcyclists, especially those a bit shorter in stature or riders who've realized the truth of the old axiom, "It's more fun to ride a slow bike fast than it is to ride a fast bike slow."

There's no problem with a lack of sexy here, although that's probably because the CB-1 wasn't really designed as an entry-level motorcycle: the 399cc inline four that motivates the CB-1 was shared with the sportier CBR400 that never officially made it to the USA, although they do show up from time-to-time as grey market imports. As you would expect, this mini-sportbike powerplant is very sophisticated, and has four tiny cylinders, sixteen valves, and dual overhead cams operated by gears, instead of the expected timing chain. The little four made 55hp and could push the 400lb machine to a top speed of 118mph. The frame is a less-sophisticated tubular steel unit instead of the CBR's aluminum beam frame, valves are bit smaller, and the CB-1 has a single-disc front brake set up, but it is otherwise very similar in terms of performance, except in top speed. Of course the CB-1 was geared a bit shorter and actually felt quicker in real-world riding than its sportier sibling.

This example appears to be very clean, although the gauges could use a little help. A trip to eBay should eventually turn something up, or fit something cool and modern from Acewell or Motogadget. The carb service mentioned by the seller is a nice bonus, as that could be a headache for a new rider, or even for an experienced wrench.

From the original eBay listing: 1990 Honda CB-1 for Sale

This is a fine specimen of a CB-1. It does not at all look its age. It's not museum quality, there are a few minor blemishes, but it is very close to perfect. The bike was just serviced: the carburetors were cleaned & synched and new tires were mounted. It runs perfectly, all the lights work, etc. It needs nothing but a new owner to enjoy the ridiculously smooth high-reving beauty.

The seller is asking just $3,100 for this particular bike, a bargain considering the performance and sophistication found here. There are near cult-like levels of devotion surrounding the somewhat forgotten Honda CB-1 and it's v-twin stablemate the Hawk GT, although that hasn't translated into increased values, as these are still very affordable bikes and offer performance, rarity, and relatively easy maintenance. Although handling is limited by the budget suspension, bolt-on upgrades from the era's CBR should sort that out easily and improve stopping as well with a second front brake disc and caliper. In an era of relatively simple and economical small-displacement machines, something like this offers up big-bike thrills in a very sophisticated, manageable package, with a low price tag, street cred, and good looks.

-tad

All You Really Need: 1990 Honda CB-1 for Sale
Suzuki March 21, 2017 posted by

Slingshot My Heart: 1988 Suzuki GSX-R750 for Sale

Suzuki's original GSX-R750 is arguably one of the most influential sportbikes of all time. Other bikes may have incorporated some of its design and performance elements, but none were able to combine them all into such an affordable package, or were able to capture the public's imagination in the same way. Every iteration of the Gixxer was made by the bucketload, but the bike's reliability and ubiquity meant that they were used and abused, and then discarded, making pristine examples like this one both desirable and very hard to come by. The early "Slabbie" has already reached collector status,  but the second-generation "Slingshot" GSX-R750 models are steadily increasing in value as well and offer more modern performance and handling, compared to the slightly vintage original.

Looking at the slab-sided design, it's pretty easy to see where the Slabbie GSX-R got its nickname, but the Slingshot is named for the 38mm semi-flatslide Mikuni "Slingshot" carburetors that fed the 748cc inline four cylinder engine. Suzuki's original GSX-R was designed with simplicity and light weight in mind and, as a result, the bike was oil instead of water-cooled. But the significant cooling demands of a high-performance sportbike meant the Gixxer needed a sophisticated, high-capacity oil pump and associated cooling and filtration system known as Suzuki Advanced Cooling System or "SACS" to keep temperatures under control. SACS was used on the GSX-R750 and 1100 up until 1992 when Suzuki bowed to convention and switched to water cooling for subsequent generations of the bike.

This particular example appears to be in excellent condition and has obviously been enthusiast-owned and lovingly maintained. It isn't just some well-maintained survivor though: it includes some very tasty modifications like that Metmachex swingarm, a very desirable bit and the suspension has been more than just "overhauled," as the original bike didn't have upside-down forks until 1991. The LED signals are probably not to everyone's taste, but they're reliable, improve visibility, and are, as the seller mentions, easily changed.

 

From the original eBay listing: 1988 Suzuki GSX-R750 for Sale

You are bidding on a 1988 Suzuki GSXR-750 first year, 2nd Gen. model GSXR-J aka Slingshot in Suzuki's traditional blue & white paint scheme that is very sought after. This is one of the lightest and fastest oil cooled GSXR of its time. This particular bike is mostly original condition with the exception of a few upgrades which I'll list later on in the description. Some of the OEM parts  I still have (I'll notate) and can be sold with the bike, if you are interested in going back to stock.

The exhaust is a Yoshimura pipe ceramic coated and aluminium canister. The Mikuni 36mm flat slide carburetors has a Stage 3 jet kit, these both were ideal performance mods for this motor. The blinkers have been replaced with modern LEDs but you can easily go back to stock since all the wiring and connectors are intact. Also, the windscreen was switched out to a tinted by the previous owner. The suspension has had a major upgraded since the stock GSX-R were notoriously known to have a low ground clearance with only a slim margin of error. Both the front and rear have been completely rebuilt by Lindemann Engineering. The rear swingarm is ultra-rare Metmachex (equal to JMC) braced and with eccentric adjusters. This is the style of the endurance racers used back in the late 80's since the stock was shown to have flex. I do have the original OEM swing arm available upon request. The original speedo and tach have been replaced due to the needles falling off. I replaced them with an 1100 model of that year since it's was close to the miles but I do have the original for the new owner and I am basing the miles on the original speedo/tach cluster.  
 
All of the body panels are original and in good condition, no cracks or brittle spots. There are some scratches from general wear and tear which I'll try and capture in the photos. The wheels are in great shape, paint is excellent and no sizable chips. Cosmetically, I would claim this motorcycle is an 8 out of 10.  Mechanically it is flawless, runs perfect, shifts smooth, pulls hard and easy to ride. All of the electrics work as they should; blinkers, horn, lights, speedo, tach, are properly functioning. The bike just had a full detailed service and tune up, all fluids were flushed, and mechanically everything was inspected and replaced if necessary. The Battery and tires are less than a year old.  

This GSX-R750 was well-taken care of and adult own, and I am the 3rd owner. It was never abused or down to my knowledge.  Please feel free to ask any questions, do not hesitate to contact me. If you need any additional pictures or have any additional questions,  feel free to message me or call me here 424-225-2028. Also, I'm including with the sale, are the OEM passenger seat, and tank bra. Service manual and receipts for all maintenance and upgrades.

There is plenty of time left on this auction, but bidding is already pretty active. This particular version of the GSX-R was only produced for a couple of years and doesn't seem to have been particularly well-regarded when it was new but, with all due respect to the original "Slabbie" I think it's far and away the best-looking GSX-R ever made and if I had space in my garage, I'd really want to find a nice one.

-tad

Slingshot My Heart: 1988 Suzuki GSX-R750 for Sale
Aprilia March 20, 2017 posted by

Never Been Kissed: 2004 Aprilia RS250 Challenge with ZERO Miles!

Update 3.20.2017: Back on eBay after first being on RSBFS in August 2014 for $11k. Current bid is just under $7k reserve not met. Links updated. -dc

I’ve always loved the look of the Aprilia RS 250, but I’m only a recent convert to the stink and rattle of two-strokes. Well, technically, I’m a hypothetical convert, since I’ve yet to actually ride one. For many riders, their very first experiences on two wheels involved quasi-legal antics on dirt bikes, but I’m the only gear-head in the family, and bikes were strictly verboten growing up. I'm also biased against them: after spending years in LA working late-night jobs, there’s nothing I hate more than the tinny wail of a leaf blower at 8am so I sure didn’t want my motorcycles to sound related to those hateful things.

2004 Aprilia RS250 L Rear

But while I still don’t think they make a very pretty noise, the light weight and tinny, chainsaw shriek of bikes like the RGV and Gamma have become increasingly intriguing for me. There’s something strange and exotic about them, and I’m pretty sure the RS250 would be a great place to start.

2004 Aprilia RS250 Dash

Aprilia’s little road and track bike used a modified version of Suzuki’s RGV250 motor boosted to 60hp and featured classy, generally subdued race-replica paint schemes that have aged very well. Although those 60 ponies come on in a typical two-stroke rush that keeps you dancing on the shift lever, the bike’s very light weight and amazing handling make that a joy, rather than a chore.

2004 Aprilia RS250 Gearshift

From the original eBay listing: 2004 Aprilia RS250 Challenge for Sale

Brand new, zero miles, mint condition from the factory. I bought the bike for my collection. It has been properly stored and the engine has been fogged once a year with CRC Marine engine fog. It should be noted that this bike is not street legal. It has no turn signals, brake lights, or headlight. THIS IS A RACEBIKE THROUGH AND THROUGH. It would make a great addition for a serious collector, or perfect for your local track day. This bike may be the last of the great two stroke RS250s with zero miles. The bike comes with the very detailed factory manual and the factory spring tuning kit.

2004 Aprilia RS250 L Front

This bike presents a bit of a problem. The RS250 Challenge is a tool for going fast, a full-on track-rat race bike. So what do you do with this one? Seems a shame to abuse it on the track, but what else to do with such a focused motorcycle? Display it? They’re great-looking machines, but they’re meant to be ridden, and with no title, making it street-legal is not an option without some serious DMV shenanigans. And then there’s that whole “zero miles” thing again…

For collectors, it won’t get any better than this: a hermetically-sealed time capsule limited-edition bike that actually runs. For riders? Well, we’ll probably go sniffing around elsewhere for a bike we won't feel guilty about thrashing.

-tad

2004 Aprilia RS250 R Rear

Never Been Kissed: 2004 Aprilia RS250 Challenge with ZERO Miles!
Yamaha March 20, 2017 posted by

Naked Ambition – 2001 Yamaha FZ-1

The Yamaha R1's likeable cousin, the FZ-1 was known as the Fazer offshore.  With its smaller carbs stretching the torque curve, more compliant suspension, and accomodating riding position, the FZ-1 was a bit of a sleeper with 143 hp.  Some of that friendliness has been dyno-tuned out of this example from Michigan, with airbox delete, exhaust and re-jetted carburettors.

2001 Yamaha FZ-1 for sale on eBay

The Fazer model began as 600, but with the R1 right across the showroom, requests for the 998cc four in a plain wrapper became too numerous for Yamaha to ignore.  The FZ takes advantage of the Genesis five-valve heads and EXUP exhaust, which tailors the dimensions of the exhaust collector to engine speed.  Brakes are similar to the R1 but use a larger rear disk in anticipation of a passenger.  Frame mounted fairing is a little bigger than your average bikini, and echoes the R1 beak.

The FZ-1 was only offered in age-appropriate color schemes and this one is basic black with the steel frame in silver-gray.  The owner has deleted the frame-mounted mirrors and the blue anodized covers look good with the levers and brake caliper pucks.  But the stock mirrors will have to go back on unless the new owner picks some bar-ends, which are not part of the deal, as stated in the eBay auction:

Originally a slightly detuned version of the R-1 this is a torque monster. This bike is not detuned. It has a full stage 3 modification from Fast Bikes in Grand Rapids. He now works at Fox and does all the engine tuning and dyno testing. This bike pulled 136 HP at the REAR WHEEL. A huge grin to ride. And comfy enough to ride all day long.
It pulls like a jet from 30 to 110 and I have seen 154 on the speedometer. 
All the original parts go with it. I did think it was a bit plain so put vinyl accents on it. Also the tank bag, soft bags go with it. The soft bags had lousy rain covers so I had some made from Sunbrella waterproof covers.
It has plug covers where the original mirrors were. I have the original mirrors I had trouble seeing behind me with the stockers. So I put very pricey bar end mirrors on it. I am keeping them. All stock parts except the original pipe go with the bike.

The FZ-1 was a good seller, so while rarity wouldn't be in the cards, this unusual level of tuning might be worth looking into.  The FZ-1 reviewed as a real-world R1, and while compromises in the chassis and weight can't be denied, you can hack around town most of the afternoon and still have the energy for a quick jaunt on a back road.  This one has some neat professionally done mods and looks well cared for...

-donn

Naked Ambition – 2001 Yamaha FZ-1

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