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Author Archives: Tad Diemer

Honda May 2, 2018 posted by Tad Diemer

Featured Listing: 1996 Honda NSR250R SE for Sale

Update 5.2.2018: SOLD in just over 12 hours! Congratulations to buyer and seller! -dc

For the most part, we try to post up the very best, most unmolested examples of rare and interesting sportbikes for sale. But once in a while, we color outside the lines a bit and share something more personal, something customized to very specific taste. This Featured Listing Honda NSR250R SE obviously isn't completely original, a kind of Frankensteinian build that could have been a mess, but for the incredible attention to detail and quality componentry that's gone into it. This resto-mod starts with the basic bones of the last of the breed, the MC28, complete with a stylish single-sided swingarm and electronic ignition, then uses later suspension components and more modern bodywork to create a what if kind of machine.

Honda's NSR250R MC28 was one of the most technologically-advanced two-strokes ever built. Sure, it ran carburetors in an era where injection was the fueling method of choice for top-shelf sportbikes, but Honda didn't skimp on the gadgetry elsewhere: ignition was via the aforementioned PGM-IV ignition system that created different, three-dimensional maps for each individual cylinder based on the throttle position, engine rpm, and gear selection. The MC28 also used "smart cards" instead of a key to start the bike. These cards included preloaded ignition maps, and you could exchange the standard card for a race-only unit to bump the power up from the government-mandated 45hp. The downside? The HRC cards with the race maps are nearly impossible to come by now if you don't already have one.

The aluminum beam frame and 249cc liquid-cooled two-stroke v-twin were pretty much standard for the class, but the NSR added a cassette-style six-speed gearbox and their own variation of the class' de rigueur power valve, here called the RC Valve, for more user-friendly power delivery. The SE version used as the foundation of this bike featured a rattly dry clutch for additional racebike credibility. Per the description, the engine in this example been built to a very high standard using quality parts and the included dyno sheet backs up the seller's claim of 61hp at the rear wheel. The suspension is new, with an Öhlins shock out back and a revalved CBR600RR fork up front, complete with much more modern brakes. Those radial front calipers might even be overkill, considering this probably weighs more than 100lbs less than the donor bike, which would already have had superlative stopping power.

And then there's the styling. If you're a purist, you've probably already scrolled past this one, having noticed the comments section disabled. But for everyone else, the results are pretty stunning, a bit of the old and a bit of the new. I'm not generally a fan of rolling billboards, but it's hard not to love the Rothmans graphics seen here. I'm particularly glad that the builder was selective in terms of applying aftermarket bodywork to this build: I love the sleeker tail section, but Tyga's squinty headlight arrangement looks contrived, so the traditional single lamp seen here looks more NSR-y and a great bridge between the two styles.

From the Seller: 1996 Honda NSR250R SE Edition (Dry Clutch)

Bike is complete restoration with HRC 030 card derestriction tuned to 61HP, stock air box with oil injection still intact. Engine was completely rebuilt with dynamic balanced crankshaft from Falicon, new Koyo OEM crankshaft bearings. Engine has all new gaskets, bearings, and seals, top end is fresh with 140 PSI compression in both cylinders. Lower cylinder has upper cylinder head for centralized spark plug location for more efficient burn, similar to HRC style head. Jetting HRC style jet kit from T2 racing with carbon fiber reeds and HRC reed stuffers, Tyga air box lid for more air volume with new OEM air filter. Over 10 hours of dyno time, tuned perfect and runs amazing with 61HP, bike runs and drives flawlessly, no flat spots with crisp acceleration. Tyga stainless exhaust chambers with carbon fiber short silencers. Has new EBC clutch and heavy duty EBC clutch springs.

Has SPAL electric fan setup wired to toggle switch for additional cooling. Tyga carbon fiber Frame and Swingarm covers, frame and swingarm are in excellent shape with no damage. Has Tyga similar type of rear sets. New Dunlop 120/70/17 & 160/60/17 Q3 tires. Comes with all OEM original parts included in sale with OEM original fairings.  HRC 030 derestriction PGM IV with wire splice to run HRC 030 card. 

2009 Honda CBR 600RR front end, radial mount calipers, with Tyga Triple tees, steering geometry stays the same with this setup, front forks rebuilt with new valving and springs set up for NSR.  Rear shock is Ohlins, suspension is amazing, bike handles perfect, much better than stock configuration. Wheels are OEM NSR wheels powder coated white, front calipers are stock OEM 2009 Honda CBR 600RR with HH sintered pads with Galfer brake rotors, OEM 2009 Honda CBR 600RR radial pull front brake master cylinder. Rear brake is 84mm Brembo caliper, new Brembo matching pads with Tyga rear brake mount system with braided steel brake line. New DID gold chain and Tyga sprockets, 16/41 gearing. After market body work with Tyga rear tail section and subframe, all painted to match Rothman paint scheme. Has LED head/tail/turn signal lights included. 

Bike comes with Tennessee title with matching VIN number. I promise you will not find another better built NSR in the world,  I spared no expense on this build, I have already sold one on this site and customer loves it, you may contact him for reference, I will provide information if needed. $21,000 or best offer .

If you're searching for a museum-quality collectible NSR, you should look elsewhere. If you're in the market for an affordable daily rider, this isn't the bike for you. But if you want something that answers the question "what if Honda kept building the NSR into the next decade?" A bike that combines the best of the old and the new with optimized two-stroke character and performance, updated suspension, and a more modern style, you'd be hard-pressed to build something like this for the $21,000 being asked.

-tad

Featured Listing: 1996 Honda NSR250R SE for Sale
Ducati May 2, 2018 posted by Tad Diemer

One Owner: 1993 Ducati Superlight for Sale

Prior to and even during the era of the 916, Ducati still needed to shift their relatively slow, old-tech 900SS. The 916 obviously grabbed headlines, handled like it was on the proverbial rails, and looked like sex. But it was also prohibitively expensive for the plebs to buy and especially to maintain, hideously uncomfortable for regular riding, and an all-around experts-only machine. The 900SS, on the other hand, was the everyman exotic, a real Ducati, but one that was based on slightly outdated technology. Today's Superlight helped stimulate a bit of fresh interest in the working-man's Italian sportbike by adding a bit of style, lightness, and shockingly yellow paint.

The fact that it's down a bit on straight-line performance doesn't mean it's a bad bike though, far from it. And "outdated technology" also means "simpler to maintain." Changing Ducati's toothed rubber cam-drive belts is a two-year or 12,000 mile service, whichever comes first. But the procedure is pretty straightforward and can be done by any competent mechanic. The valves on the two-valve engine aren't all that tricky either and the lack of liquid-cooling and the associated hoses and bracketry mean access isn't all that difficult. That is more work than a Japanese sportbike of the same period, but no one buys a now-classic sportbike thinking it won't need a bit of work, and at least here that work is pretty simple to do.

The Superlight was basically a 900SS with fully-adjustable suspension, a solo tail, open clutch, upswept exhausts pipes that increased cornering clearance, lightweight composite Marvic wheels with a distinctive polished rim, and the critically important numbered plaque on the triple clamp: just 861 were sold in 1993 so these are very rare, if not all that high-performance. Obviously, red is the traditional, and often preferred color for Ducatis, but it seems a shame that more aren't painted yellow like this example, since very, very few motorcycles look good in yellow. The handling of the 900SS was never in doubt, and the older Super Sport has much more comfortable ergonomics than the admittedly extreme 916. Just fit a more supportive Corbin saddle, throw on a backpack, and head out for a long day of riding, without concern that you'll need to down half a bottle of ibuprofen when you get back.

If eyeball-squashing acceleration is the only metric by which you judge a motorcycle, you're going to hate this bike. If you think a 170hp bike just isn't fast enough, this isn't your machine. But there's a reason that the two-valve, air-and-oil-cooled Pantah in its various iterations gets mentioned on every "best motorcycle engine ever" list: that sucker has character. I'm biased here: I think it's the best-sounding motorcycle engine of all time, especially with a bit of extra boom liberated by some carbon-fiber cans. But it also just has a great, punchy midrange that just kind of slings you forward after each shift. The 70-75 horses a good 900 makes at the rear wheel may not sound like much on paper, but it's plenty to whip you along a canyon road and legions of Ducati fans aren't just buying these because of some perceived mystique. I mean, of course some of them are just buying a name, the idea,  but the same is probably true of the majority of motorcyclists in one way or another.

This collector bike is more of a rider, though: it's a little scruffy, some of the panels have fatigue cracks around their mounting points, and it generally needs some attention to the details. But if the mechanical bits are all in good working order, you can do a bit of a rolling-restoration on it while enjoying the sound and feel of your vintage-ish Ducati. Starting bid is about half what a cleaner, lower-mileage Superlight might sell for, so if you're handy with the wrenches, this might be a great way to pick up an appreciating classic for cheap.

From the original eBay listing: 1993 Ducati Superlight for Sale

I’m the original and only owner. The Superlight was bought new in Austin, Texas and has a clear title. The yellow color was only available in the US. I’m a mechanical engineer and performed all routine maintenance myself. The bike has never been crashed. It is all original except the muffler brackets broke and were replaced and the rear wheel fatigued and was replaced with an appropriate Ducati Monster rear wheel. The bike is in fantastic condition with only some spider cracks in the body work in the usual places as shown in the pics. New Michelin tires, seat and windshield are in great shape, 26,041 miles. Comes with pictured rear stand. Runs, rides great.. You won’t be disappointed. 

Miles aren't as low as some other examples we've seen, but aren't anything to worry about: well-maintained Pantah engines can triple this mileage with ease. Just change the belts and adjust the valves, top off with oil occasionally between changes if the level gets low, and enjoy. The weak spots are well-known and relatively simple to sort out, parts to maintain them are widely available, and most everything on the Superlight is shared with the more common SS-SP and SS-CR versions. Aside from those Marvic wheels of course. It's a shame the rear wheel isn't the correct item, but with no takers so far at the $4995 opening bid, I expect this will be on the cheap side for a Superlight. Grab this one, pocket the savings, and prowl eBay for a matching rear.

-tad

One Owner: 1993 Ducati Superlight for Sale
Bimota May 1, 2018 posted by Tad Diemer

Featured Listing: 1991 Bimota YB10 Dieci for Sale

I've mentioned this before, but everything just sounds cooler in Italian. If you want to intimidate someone, just shout gibberish at them in German: anything you say sounds clipped and military and very, very serious. But yell at someone in Italian, and it just sounds like you're trying to very emphatically seduce them. I mean, Italian car and motorcycle manufacturers don't even have to try, they just basically describe the thing, and it still sounds cool, exotic, and expensive. A Maserati Quatroporte? You mean a Maserati "Four-Door"? And bikes are even lazier: Testastretta is just "Narrow Head" and Desmosedici sounds plenty exotic, but it's just "Desmo Sixteen [Valves]." Today's Featured Listing Bimota YB10 Dieci might be the worst offender though. In English, it's just the "Yamaha-Bimota #10 Ten."

While giving your bike a simple, two-digit number for a name may not be all that creative, it suits Bimota's pragmatic approach to making impractical motorcycles. Seeing the potential in the powerful, efficient, and reliable engines being churned out by the Japanese manufacturers packaged into overweight, overbuilt, and under-suspended roadbikes, they took that performance and stuffed it into machines as much as a hundred pounds lighter. Spared any need to be affordable or practical, Bimota was free to experiment with exotic, weight-saving materials, the newest ideas in frame design, and the best suspension components available at both ends. Bimota's creations might not have been very versatile, but they were pretty good at the one thing they were supposed to be good at, which was going fast and looking cool. Okay, I guess that's really two things...

Of course, the fact that they were freed from any need to be practical also means that they can be a real pain to service. The stiff, light aluminum beam frame that was Bimota's signature during this period was wrapped tightly around the engine to keep weight down and centralize mass, so many of their bikes need to be pretty much completely disassembled before you can perform basic maintenance. Thankfully, they were also designed with body panels that are easily removed with a minimum of fuss. Seriously: look closely at those plastics and note how few seams and mounting points are visible: the tank cover, seat, and tail section are all one piece.

Of course, there's a downside to that simplicity as well: drop a modern sportbike and you might just have to replace a couple sections of fairing or a side panel or two. But when your bodywork consists of just four or five separate pieces and only 224 machines were ever produced... Well let's just say that if I owned a Bimota Dieci and planned to ride it regularly, I'd order a set of Airtech fairings and have them painted up to look like the original parts, then hang the stock bodywork on my livingroom wall.

I'm not sure exactly what changes were made between the 1987 YB4 and the 1991 YB10, but the bodywork and frame look suspiciously similar. That's no bad thing, as Italian vehicles always do seem to get better with each successive generation as the kinks are worked out, right up until they finally get it right and then promptly discontinue the model. Similar-looking Yamaha-engined Bimotas were powered by 750 and 400cc versions of their five-valve Genesis liquid-cooled inline four, but this is the big daddy, motivated by a nearly stock 1002cc engine and five-speed gearbox from the FZR1000 that produced 145hp. With a claimed weight of 407lbs, nearly 70 less than the donor bike, the slippery superbike could hit a tested top speed of 172mph, with stability provided by the fully adjustable 42mm Marzocchi upside-down forks up front and an adjustable Öhlins shock out back, which the seller has helpfully photographed for prospective buyers.

From the Seller: 1991 Bimota YB10 Dieci for Sale

VIN: ZESS8YA23MRZES041 In 1991 the first of 224 (total production) YB10 Dieci machines were produced with many of the best bits from previous models. Named Dieci (ten) in recognition of the 10th collaboration between Bimota and Yamaha, the YB10 represents the evolution of the series YB6 and YB8 with a 4 cylinder 1000cc Bimota tuned Yamaha engine. Pierluigi Marconi used inverted Marzocchi forks, super strong lightweight aluminum beam frame, redesigned aero, larger high-flow carbureted intake and more comfortable riding position. Dieci is the perfect name for the final development of the YB line. Weighing in at 407lbs (65lbs down on the stock Yamaha FZR) with 145BHP on tap, gives the rider power with a comfortable and balanced ride. Great brakes were a must so Marconi used a pair of 320mm front discs plus a single rear 230, combined with Brembo calipers. Whilst this Dieci is 25 years old and shows just over 12000 miles it doesn’t appear tired or dated. It has been well preserved and restored where necessary. The bodywork is less rounded than current trends but the ‘stealth’ look still works well, especially with its silver over red combination. Overall the body panels are well preserved and in very good condition. Recent performance and service includes Ohlin rear shock, new Pirelli Corsa tires, Termignoni carbon muffler, new chain and sprocket, new braided lines and new battery. The Dieci was originally sold and serviced by Bob Steinbugler at Bimota Spirit. Needs nothing, ready to ride. $10,500. Contact Matt with your interest: mattshaw@comcast.net

The $10,500 the seller is asking is right in line with the asking prices we've seen for similar Bimotas recently, and is pretty much chump change for such a rare, exotic, and good looking machine that can still show many modern sportbikes a clean pair of heels. You might have to work a bit harder, and avoid pissing matches with modern literbikes, but your buddy on an R6 or GSX-R is going to be very shocked to see those two big, round, endurance-style headlamps in his rear-view mirrors on a brisk Sunday morning ride...

-tad

Featured Listing: 1991 Bimota YB10 Dieci for Sale
Kawasaki April 27, 2018 posted by Tad Diemer

Explosive [Acceleration] Device: 1978 Kawasaki Z1R-TC Turbo for Sale

UPDATE: This bike sold before I could post it, but I'd thought I'd share it with you all anyway, since it is so darn nice. -Tad

The dream of the 1980s was to turbo all the things. Cars, hairdryers, sneakers... If you could buy it, someone was trying to slap a TURBO badge on it during the 1980s to help move units. Actual turbochargers started showing up on commonly-available vehicles during the 80s to inspire that trend, but people were experimenting with turbocharged passenger cars as far back as the Oldsmobile Jetfire, Chevy Corvair Corsa, and Saab 99 Turbo. It took a bit longer for turbocharging to find its way into the production motorcycling world, due to a few challenges associated with the relatively primitive turbo technology of the time. Of course, the term "production" might be stretching things a bit when you're talking about the Kawasaki Z1R-TC Turbo.

By 1978, the Kawasaki Z1R KZ1000 was decidedly old-fashioned, with honking big air-cooled four cylinder engine, a twin-shock rear suspension, spindly forks up front, and a frame that was less than cutting-edge. The package was generally competent and well-regarded, just a bit long-in-the-tooth. With the development of the much more modern GPz underway, Kawasaki needed to move some remaining stock and generate a bit of excitement for the brand. The TC Turbo, which took the already reasonably quick Z1R and added a RaJay turbo package that increased power by 50%, may have generated a little too much excitement.

TURBO was a word associated with power and speed and modern and cool, even if most people really didn't know what it meant, or exactly how a turbocharger added power to an engine. A high school buddy of mine drove his mom's Mitsubishi Tredia L equipped with some sort of POWER button on the automatic shifter, and he was convinced that it activated "turbo boost," since he'd watched lots of Knight Rider and thought that's how things worked... What it probably did was lock out overdrive in the transmission, but you couldn't convince him it didn't actually release additional power. And likely a great many enthusiasts' understanding of the technology didn't extend much beyond that.

Turbos can make big power, but with that great power comes great responsibility and it was laughably easy to adjust the wastegate on the Z1R TC to allow boost far beyond what the stock internals could handle, leading to a sudden, explosive reversal of the normal interior/exterior engine component relationship. Sure, you could always opt to have your new Kawasaki's engine fully built to withstand the additional pressures, something that was actually recommended by the company, but how many people do you think bothered to do that?

Turbochargers originally came into widespread use during World War II, and the advantages of forced-induction were exploited to allow combat aircraft to perform more efficiently at high altitudes, where reduced oxygen density significantly reduced power. The move towards turbocharging in automobiles was also driven by necessity in the 80s, when the manufacturers were hit by significantly increased fuel-economy and emissions standards. A turbocharger allowed smaller, more efficient engines to perform like larger engines on demand.

Unfortunately, while that Jekyl/Hyde personality of early turbocharged cars generally made them entertaining, it made motorcycles, especially ones already pushing the limits of frame and suspension technology, pretty terrifying: the Z1R probably would have killed more people than Cholera, but luckily very few were actually built. Even fewer still survive today, and most of those aren't in the hands of their original owners, who likely died horrible, firey deaths...

From the original eBay listing: 1978 Kawasaki Z1R Turbo for Sale

Created through an arrangement between Kawasaki and Turbo Cycle Corporation (which was founded by ex-Kawasaki Marketing Director, Alan Masek) brand new Z1R's were sent to TCC, who then modified them with a RaJay turbo and badging. These modified bikes were then sold through select Kawasaki dealers- without a warranty. THERE WERE ONLY 500 BUILT. 

The gas tank side covers, header panels, and tail section have been repainted and color matched to an original Z1R TC. It has all new decals from reproductiondecals.com. So much work has been done to this bike. There are approximately 40 miles on the top half of the rebuilt engine. the cylinder was removed, sand blasted, honed, and painted. New piston rings have been installed. I purchased a like new cylinder head that has all new component parts. The original head had two hairline cracks. The forks were removed, cleaned, and polished with new dust covers. It has a new battery. It has a rebuilt,older style Keihn carburetor. I have the original Bendix carburetor, but as most people know, it runs smoother with the Keihn carborator.

The Rajay turbo 370 F 40 was rebuilt by Mr. Turbo.  The seat has no rips or cuts. The seat pan was removed, sanded, primed, and painted with stock stickers installed from reproductiondecals.com. The bike starts, sounds, and runs great. I have all of the receipts from the mechanical work. Only if i feel you are very serious, I will provide you with the name of the motorcycle service center who performed the work on my bike and send you copies of the sales and receipts. Before the engine was rebuilt, I replaced the tires which are Pirelli Sport Demon. The sprockets and the brake pads were replaced. Those items have about 200 miles on them. The only item i know of that is not an original item is the Pingel fuel valve. Passed down from the original owner are the owners manual, turbo supplement manual, and black vinyl Kawasaki pouch, which was provided for Z1R TC conversions. Both manuals have all the pages intact, and are not oily or greasy. By the way, I know on Ebay, there are reproduction turbo supplement manuals, but this one is original. You can tell by the yellowing pages and semi brittle paper. All three items are 40 years old. 

This actual bike, and not one just like it, is pictured in a hard cover book written by Tony Sculpher title, "Kawasaki (K) Z1000 Z1-R." I have the book. I bought the bike from a collector of Z1R TCs. I wont divulge the info of the collector on ebay, due to privacy and legalities. I made a copy of the title while it was in his name, before I sent it to be transferred to my name. His name is in the book with a picture of my actual motorcycle above the description. All of the instrumentation works. The bike starts, sounds, and runs great. 

This bike's VIN is listed in the official Kawasaki registration for TCC bikes. I am posting a few photos, however, if you want more, please state the area of the bike that you want more detailed photos of. The frame VIN is KZT00D006472. The engine number is from the state police of California as it looks like there must have been an engine case issue which required a factory replacement. Replacement cases from Kawasaki do not carry an engine number and come blank. 

I will assist with your shipping, but will not be responsible for the shipping.

If you're in the market for a Z1R TC [and who isn't?] this looks like a good one. Unfortunately, as mentioned at the start, the listing has been pulled, so I'm assuming it "sold locally." It's clearly been owned by a knowledgeable enthusiast and, although it isn't sporting original paint, it appears to have been painstakingly restored. This is about as nice a machine as you're likely to find, with history, appropriate mechanical updates, and even a very comprehensive video with lots of commentary.

-tad

Explosive [Acceleration] Device: 1978 Kawasaki Z1R-TC Turbo for Sale
Ducati April 26, 2018 posted by Tad Diemer

Featured Listing: 1987 Ducati 750 F1 Laguna Seca for Sale

Update 5.2.2018: Price reduced to $16,750! Good luck to buyers and seller! -dc

Update 3.16.2018: Recently serviced late last year at local Ducati specialist, including new timing belts, idler and tensioners, valve adjust,all fluids changed - including brake and forks, and carb rebuild with new accelerator pump. New price is $18,500 or best offer.
Contact Adam by email: adam_chovanak@yahoo.com

If you were looking to jump onto the Ducati 750 F1 bandwagon early with an eye towards making big money flipping one... That ship has sailed: these Pantah-powered race replicas now command some serious money. For years, these occupied the same place as the early Super Sport, in part because they straddle two generations of Ducatis, pre and post-Cagiva ownership, but don't seem to fully belong to either. They've got a slightly shed-built quality from the older era, combined with the "modern" Pantah L-twin and more 80s style. When new, build quality was criticized and suspension, as delivered, was a bit crude. But the potential was there from the beginning in bikes like today's featured 750 F1 Laguna Seca, it just needed a bit of development.

The 750 F1 used Ducati's characteristic trellis frame, designed in this case by Verlicchi and visibly wrapped around the lightweight aluminum tank. It was powered by a 749cc version of their air/oil-cooled, two-valve twin making a claimed 76hp and styled to look like the successful TT1 race bikes of the period. Dry weight was just 385lbs and the 16" front and 18" wheel gave nimble handling. The Montjuich, Santa Monica, and this Laguna Seca were all limited editions of the F1 that were priced higher when new and featured improved performance and a higher top speed.

For years, the F1 languished forgotten and relatively unloved, but the fact that it was conceived before the company's takeover by Cagiva and the perceived mass-production that followed seems to be the exact quality now driving the increase in prices. Looking closely, there's one obvious indicator that the F1 came before Cagiva's ownership: bikes that came later reversed the rear cylinder so that both carburetors could be fitted into the engine's vee for much more efficient packaging. Some F1s have awkward pod filters fitted that bulge out from behind the fairing, but this example doesn't bother with something as trivial as "air filtration" and just has mesh screens to keep out rocks, stray animals, and small children.

ZDM750LS-750139 / DM750L1-750238

Recently out of long-term collection in Japan - this Marco Lucchinelli Replica is a time capsule in beautiful shape with only ~2500km  / 1600 miles. Original paint and bodywork is excellent; red paint on the beautiful trellis frame very nice with some darkening on the upper surface of each tube. Clip-ons and muffler have visible surface corrosion. Runs great - bike starts right up, idles well and runs like it should. Original mirrors included in sale.

The F1 Laguna Seca, along with the Santa Monica and Montjuich, represented the pinnacle of the factory Pantah-based TT race-bikes. These hand-built race-replica bikes were closely based on the forks F1 racers with open-throat Dell'Orto carburetors, 10:1 compression pistons, bigger valves and less restrictive exhaust. Transmission uses straight-cut (like the works bikes) instead of helical primary drive gears. The Laguna Seca is fitted with Verlicchi aluminum swing-arm and solo seat.

Widely acclaimed when new - Cycle World stated, "They May Be Bargains. This last Ducati is a throwback in the spirit of the 750 SS of 1973, the F1's most famous predecessor. Like the 750 SS, the F1 is the Italian sportsbike of its era."

Mick Walker summarized in his 1989 Ducati Buyers Guide, "If you find, or already own, an F1 my advice is to hang on to it. If you are doubly lucky to have been able to afford one of the 'limited edition' models, then guard it with your life, for you have a real classic of the future. Any one of the Monjuich, Laguna Seca or Santamonica models is worth a full five stars, for they are both beautiful and rare."

This gem will make a fabulous addition to your collection. Offering with low reserve and reasonable buy-it-now. Currently on it's importation paperwork - Japanese de-registration certificate / English translation of certificate / NHTSA HS7 / EPA 3520-1 / CBP 7501 (stamped). Washington State title is available for $400 documentation fee approx. 5-week wait. WA state buyers responsible for Tax & License.

As the seller mentions, the bike isn't cosmetically perfect, but no bike that's thirty years old and in original condition is likely to be. Bodywork is very sharp, but some of the exposed metal parts have some surface corrosion but the paint on the bodywork looks very nice and mileage is extremely low at just 1,600. The seller is asking for $16,750

-tad

Featured Listing: 1987 Ducati 750 F1 Laguna Seca for Sale
Triumph April 26, 2018 posted by Tad Diemer

Fireball Orange: 1995 Triumph Speed Triple for Sale

Fully-faired sportbikes of the 80s and 90s from Japan are almost without exception festooned with jagged graphics, huge logos, hilariously technical-sounding acronyms, and retina-searing colors. They're pretty cool now in a retro way and some of them, like the famous Rothmans designs, are truly iconic, but they feel like rolling billboards. Which of course is exactly what race-bikes, and therefore race-replicas are. They're fun and nostalgic and even ironic these days, but honestly? I wouldn't have been caught dead on one back when they were new. I've always been a classy, subtle guy and while this Fireball Orange Triumph Speed Triple may not be subtle, it is a pretty classy brute and exactly the kind of machine that interested me back when I got into motorcycling.

It's a shame folks on this site don't seem to like these first generation "T309" Triumph Speed Triples. You're really looking at one of the original factory streetfighters: a legitimate sportbike with the fairing removed, a modern cafe racer. Because while the period Daytona may not have been a cutting-edge performer, it certainly was a sportbike, just one that was more a "gentlemans's express" than a "racetrack refugee." Sure, the Speed Triple was limited by its modular spine-frame that allowed design flexibility at the expense of weight and handling, but people did actually race them, at least in a one-make series called, fittingly enough, the Speed Triple Challenge that was meant to promote the brand.

Unfortunately, the weight and top-heavy design meant it was as much a race bike as Harley's more recent XR1200 that also found its way into a one-make race series. But as a road bike? The Speed Triple's burly 885cc three cylinder engine had performance and charisma to spare. Triumph knew it couldn't compete in terms of raw performance against the Japanese, so they went for quality and character instead, and their bikes of the period had better detailing and better paint. You'd certainly be hard-pressed to find another bike from this era that looks this good without having been restored.

From the original eBay listing: 1995 Triumph Speed Triple for Sale

Beautiful, mint, original ‘95 Speed Triple. Low miles & garage kept. Meticulously maintained. This bike is unique, draws a crowd, and performs extremely well for an older bike. Soulful exhaust note and a ton of character. There are not many like this one left. Mileage is subject to change, as I am still riding it.

Even if the early Speed Triple wasn't a pretty cool bike on its own, at least Triumph's strategy paid off and strong sales allowed brand to thrive, enabling it to produce machines like the much-lauded Daytona 675, Street Triple, and modern Speed Triple. Picking at them for their limitations seems unkind, especially considering the incredible bang for the buck they provide. You're a seasoned rider, you've got a few grand to spend, and you want something cool to ride to work and blast around the canyons on weekends? Something that your significant other will want to ride with you? Something with classic looks and reasonably modern performance? This is about the cleanest, lowest-mileage near-classic you're likely to find, and you can even pretend it's an investment...

-tad

Fireball Orange: 1995 Triumph Speed Triple for Sale