Posts by Category: Yamaha

Yamaha June 23, 2017 posted by

Original Fizz: 1990 Yamaha FZR600

Before the haters and the interweb know-it-alls pipe up, we all know that the FZR600 - while a great bike in its day - is not rare. So what the heck is it doing here on RSBFS??! I can sum it up with one word: Condition. These bikes are not really collector material; Yamaha simply made too many, and they were really nothing special from a tech perspective. Fast forward nearly 30 years, though, and 98% (or more) of these bikes have been through about 6-7 owners, raced, hooned, crashed, trashed and rebuilt - and look like it. Here we have what amounts to a "nearly new" Fizzer 600 with enough miles on the clock not to be a garage queen (approaching 12,000), but clean enough to eat off of. The parts are original, and the bike looks it. This example is the 1% that had no chance to be special when released, but because of the preservation has become a unique find.

1990 Yamaha FZR600 for sale on eBay

Yamaha introduced the FZR600 as an update to the FZ series. Born of the Genesis ideology, the liquid-cooled inline four is canted forward notably in order to shift weight onto the front of the bike. Unlike the 750 and 1,000cc Fizzers, the 600 makes due with only four valves per cylinder, not five; that makes it like the 400. Unlike the 400, however, the Delta Box frame on the 600 is steel, not aluminum. This was a cost move on the part of Yamaha. Another cost-saving move was the relative lack of updates to the bike over its 10 year run; aside from colors and graphics, only minor cosmetic changes were introduced to the lineup. Again, I'm damning the FZR600 with faint praise; it is nothing particularly special, yet somehow does most things right.


From the seller:
1990 FZR 600 – Immaculate condition. I hate to do this but I am finally willing to sell one of the best bikes in my collection. The reason for my decision is because I am older and my back is not like it was. In my opinion this has to be one of the nicest (if not the nicest) 1990 FZR 600’s in the entire country. The bike has all its original plastic that is in amazing condition. This bike has been garaged and babied it’s entire life. When I purchased the bike I took a year to replace any and all tiny little trim pieces that get worn overtime using ONLY new “out of wrapper” OEM parts to do so. This bike has brand new tires (less then 20 miles), a new battery, a brand new OEM fairing stabilizer bar (try to find one of those) and a new windshield that even includes the factory OEM rubber trim around it. Even the seat is like new on this bike. The bike runs like NEW and starts right up. Clutch is perfect and shifts like new. The engine has only 11,800 original miles on it. There are only two major aftermarket parts on this bike. The first is a one piece “period correct” Vance and Hines four to one exhaust system which sounds great and the other is a "Stage One" jet kit. You will be amazed at how nice this bike is. This bike turns more heads then most because young kids don’t know what it is and old people (like me) haven’t seen one in 20 years (ha). As I said, I hate to see it go but someone should be riding this!!!! The price includes a real wheel stand.

I challenge you to find a FZR600 that looks like this. Hit up the GoogleTube and do your worst. What you will end up with is a bunch of rat bikes, "naked" stunters, abandoned rust buckets and possibly even some tenable, high-mileage used bikes. If you want a period correct FZR600 - one that you can ride and one that shows well - THIS is your option. The bummer here is that the price is rather steep. The 600cc Fizzer was always a bit of a budget bike during the day; you could spend more with Honda, Kawasaki or Suzuki, but you didn't necessarily get more bike. Yamaha was smart about their trade-offs, and built a competitive bike on a budget. This particular FZR600 - while about the best we've seen in a long, long time - breaks the bank with a $4,900 Buy It Now option. There is also an auction underway with a $4k opening bid plus reserve (no takers yet). Sadly, this is the best FZR600 that we have seen, and it is not likely to be sold at these prices. A good bike? Most certainly. Great condition? Undoubtedly. Overpriced for a non-collectable model? Sorry to say, but true. Check it out here, and then share your experience with the most versatile of the 1990s 600cc set! Good Luck!!

MI

Original Fizz: 1990 Yamaha FZR600
Yamaha June 12, 2017 posted by

80% of an OW01?: 1996 Yamaha YZF-750R

1996 Yamaha YZF-750R on ebay

Back in the mid-1990's the main way most sporbike fans learned about the latest and greatest developments was through a subscription to a motorcycling magazine.   For me, the magazine was Cycle and I can clearly remember reading discussions about the different development philosophies of each major Japanese manufacturer.   These philosophies are reprinted below (or at least as best I can remember them) and I think most people who are fans of sportbikes from this period will agree these are still accurate for the Japanese mid -1990's machines.

  • The Honda Philosophy-  Strong in engineering and build quality but would sometimes over-engineer or develop something without a proven market.  The model line was refreshed in a phased approach over time instead of all at once.  Styling could be bland/conservative.
  • The Kawasaki Philosophy-  Great engines but suspect braking.  Not really an innovator but decent build quality.  Not as extensive a model line as Honda or Suzuki.  As for styling...well I hope you like green.
  • The Suzuki Philosophy-   Seemed to have a "try-everything-and-see-what-works" mentality resulting in a confusing model lineup.  The lower part of the lineup would sometimes have bikes with lower component quality in order to meet a price point.  Styling varied widely based on the model.
  • The Yamaha Philosophy-  Similar to Honda with great engineers but build quality not quite as strong.   Timeframe for innovation was longer than Honda and seemed more along the lines of trying to improve on a proven/existing concept rather than being a true innovator.  Model lineups were mid-sized but fortunately major components were common across the model line.  Styling choices were hit-or-miss and could sometimes be eye bending (cough-Vance-and-Hines-edition-cough-Marty).

 

The philosophy review above is relevant to today's post, a 1996 Yamaha YZF-750R. While the YZF-750R was the base version of Yamaha's YZF 750 lineup and wasn't as exotic as it's lineup siblings, it still had the same basic design. Yamaha tuned the R to be good for both street riding and canyon carving and the R actually won the 1996 Sport Rider magazine bike of the year.. While it didn't sell in the same numbers as the Suzuki or Kawasaki 750cc machines, he R version still has a very active fan base as evidenced by the EXUP Worldwide forum.

Here is what the seller has to say about this particular 1996 Yamaha YZF-750R.

  • 12,202 miles
  • all original plastics & graphics
  • spotless stainless exhaust with functioning EXUP valve
  • original windshield, blinkers,rear plastic fender
  • No aluminum ever polished or chromed
  • Some new parts  include battery, rear rotor, all brake pads, chain & sprockets, oil & filter.
  • few tiny paint chips on bottom edge of tank & one crack in top of right mid fairing 


In case you are wondering what the YZF would be like to live with today, there's some good buying advice available on VisorDown here.  I also found a previous post on the RSBFS archives which a nice video of a test of a few older bikes with the Yamaha being one of them (embedded below)

So now we come to the question of the value of this mid-90's middleweight.  Well a close inspection of the pics show some wear and tear and the spelling errors in the ebay listing are a bit of a concern.  Also given its level of components and condition, its not really a bike that will be likely to appreciate over time.  

That being said, the current bid price is below $1600 which seems stupid low (although reserve has not been met). And even though the 1996 Yamaha YZF-750R is the lowest spec model of the 1996 Yamaha 750cc sportbike line, the Yamaha philosophy means that this is probably an opportunity to experience 75-80% of the performance of the legendary OW01 at a fraction of the cost. Perhaps this one is best suited for our more senior RSBFS readers to experience or relive a bit of the 1990's 750cc sportbike experience, someone who wants to finally experience a EXUP machine without a huge outlay of monies. And I would be willing to bet you won't see another one anytime soon at your next bike night.

Marty/Dallaslavowner

80% of an OW01?:  1996 Yamaha YZF-750R
Yamaha June 6, 2017 posted by

Like a virgin: 2006 Yamaha YZF-R1 LE with only 6 miles!

For many, the classic Yamaha race livery will always be the bumble bee yellow and black, an iconic combination forever immortalized by King Kenny Roberts. It is a color scheme that has adorned many models - from the TZs and RZ racers of the 1970s to the RDLC and RZ350 editions in the 1980s. It is bold, it makes a statement, and it is quintessential Yamaha. But is there more than just color here?

Yamaha YZF-R1 Limited Edition for sale on eBay

This Limited Edition YZF-R1, built to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the company, takes a page out of the Ducati playbook: take a good machine, beef it up in minor ways, add a splash of graphics, limit the number of bikes released, and sell each at a premium. The LE model of the R1 is really no different. Take a standard 2006 R1 - itself a very good open class bike. Add upscale Ohlins suspension front and rear, with a trick height adjuster out back (10mm range of motion). Dress it up with some custom Marchesini wheels (pattered after Rossi's MoviStar racer), shod it with super-sticky rubber, and add a slipper clutch for that little bit extra performance. Drape it in race bike livery that really makes it stand out. Anodize everything else to match. Give it an onboard lap timer to really sell the racing theme. Assign each one a number plaque and sell it at a premium. In this case, a $18,000 MSRP.

From the seller:
2006 Yamaha 50th Anniversary R1 Limited Edition R1 LE being Sold by Original Owner/Collector purchased in April 2006

Six…Yes ONLY Six Delivery Miles!

Bone Stock Original

Bike No. 243 of Serialized Production limited to 500 Units imported to the US

Original MSRP of $18,000

More from the seller:
Sale of Bike comes complete with the following included:

BRAND NEW Complete with Tags Yamaha 50th Anniversary Vintage Leather Jacket – Size XL (Original Purchase Price of $769.95/One currently listed on eBay for $829.99)

BRAND NEW Complete with Tags Yamaha 50th Anniversary Vintage Pants – Size 36

BRAND NEW in Box Arai RX-7 Corsair Colin Edwards Laguna Seca 50th Anniversary Helmet – Size L (Original Purchase Price of $759.95)

[Above Only Worn for Photo as modeled by 16 year old son, who is not included in sale as per Mom!]

Two Original Keys on Yamaha 50th Anniversary Key Chain(s)

BRAND NEW Yamaha 50th Anniversary Vintage Gear Bag

Additional Owner’s Manual in Plastic (In addition to original Owner’s Manual under seat)

New Service Manual; Original 2006 Yamaha Sportbike Brochure; and Color Copy of MSO

Additional Gold Drive Chain sealed in Plastic

Original Born with Yuasa YTZ10S Battery plus New YTZ10S Battery purchased on 05.24.17

The trouble with the "limited edition" format is that it has never really worked for the Japanese - apart for ultra-exclusive homologation bikes. Under the covers, this is really just a tarted up R1, of which Yamaha sold by the tens of thousands. With the Limited Edition Anniversary bike, Yamaha restricted output to approximately 500 units in the United States, and about an equal amount spread across the rest of the world.

This particular R1-LE is about as clean a bike as you are likely to see and comes with that looks like a pile of extra stuff. With only 6 miles on the clock (supposedly delivery / dealer prep miles), you are looking at essentially a brand new bike. A brand new bike that is 11 years old, that is. Will this one appreciate in value over time? It is hard to tell with any bike, but a rise in value is not likely to occur in the near term. And if there is a rise in value, it will likely be due to the fact that the bike is still in "as new" condition more so than the fact that it is an Anniversary edition. Still, it is a very cool bike - and one that we should be thankful Yamaha created. Check it out here, and then jump over the Comments and share your thoughts: Worth more for the miles or the LE graphics? Good Luck!!

MI

Like a virgin: 2006 Yamaha YZF-R1 LE with only 6 miles!
Yamaha June 2, 2017 posted by

Titled! 1991 Yamaha TZR250

The quarter-liter two stroke is the bread and butter of RSBFS. And while gray market bikes come in all shapes and sizes (including the ever-popular 400cc four stroke class and the 500cc smokers), the 250 is the volume leader. With svelte dimensions, racy accommodations and a surprising amount of power, the 250cc two stroke is - in some ways - the very essence of sport motorcycling. If you're looking for ground pounding torque, please look elsewhere. But if you are looking for handling, speed, GP bike sound and all-around rarity, the 250 class is hard to beat. Today's quarter-liter candy bar - a titled and plated Yamaha TZR250 - was pointed out to us by a reader and comes from a reputable dealer of imported exotica.

Titled 1991 Yamaha TZR250 for sale on eBay

Yamaha produced the TZR as a street-going replica of the TZ race bike starting in 1986. Over a 10 year period, the TZR morphed from a RD / RDLC replacement as a parallel twin to a reverse cylinder 3MA model, to this eventual V-twin configuration (3XV). Options and components vary greatly depending upon the variant of bike AND the locality from where it is sourced. Differences include: induction system, ignition system, power valve actuation and timing, clutch type, lighting and suspension adjustability. Power is estimated to be somewhere between 40-50 in most cases, and the dry weight of a TZR is a scant 275 lbs. This particular bike sports a conventional wet clutch and upside down forks, marking it as an R model (other variants include the RS, RSP, SP and RR).

From the seller:
1991 Yamaha TZR250 3XV

18,521 miles (29,820km)
"R" model with wet clutch and upside-down forks
All original bodywork in excellent condition (check all 24 hi-def pictures)
Engine has been fully checked including compression and leak down
Starts with one kick & runs perfectly; all controls, lights, etc. checked and operating properly
Super clean chassis and engine
Legally imported with full US Customs paperwork
DOT/EPA cleared for street legal use
Comes with US title with correct year, make, model & VIN

Bike has been fully inspected and serviced by partner Speedwerks including:
Engine fully inspected including compression and leak-down checks
Re-built carbs, NGK spark plugs, EBC brake pads
All fluid systems (fuel/oil/coolant) drained, flushed & refilled with new filters
All operating controls, switches, lights & indicators checked and working properly
Bridgestone Battlax BT-003 tires

Buy it Now: $8,999

Ask us any questions about this amazing machine. Moto2 Imports is a specialist importer of two-strokes and other Japanese sport bikes.

CALIFORNIA BUYERS: Due to California titling requirements, we currently only sell to CA buyers for track use or collection purposes. Contact Moto2 Imports for more details.

Three things jump out at me when I look at the overall advert. One: This bike is super clean and free from most of the dreaded corrosion and bodywork damage we tend to see on hastily-imported and flipped motorcycles. Two: Speedwerks, a noted repair and speed shop has performed maintenance updates and critical checks. This eases the worry about seals, air leaks, and the ubiquitous seizing that follows. Three: This puppy is titled and plated for street use. It's not often we see a clean, titled bike that is ready to ride like this one. As usual, Californians get the shaft (speaking as a native).

Of course quality has its price. In this case, a BIN of $8,999. While not outside of the pricing-spread realm, it does represent the higher end of the spectrum. The good news is that there is also an auction underway, and this one is still sitting in the basement at $2,550 with moderately heavy bidding and a reserve in place. Compared to many 250s we have come across, this one looks great and all signs seem to indicate it is a solid bike. Check it out here and understand why it was called out to us. Now if only we could do something about California laws related to imports and smokers..... Good Luck!!

MI

Yamaha June 1, 2017 posted by

Featured Listing: 1988 Yamaha FZR750RU for Sale in California!

Update 6.2.2017: Sold in just 12 hours! Congratulations to buyer and seller!

If you have a rare sportbike for sale, model years 1980ish to 2004ish, consider our Featured Listing service for $59. Email me to see to get started: dan@motoringblogs.com

When you think of Yamaha's homologation specials, you probably picture their extremely exotic OW01, but this very nice FZR750RU fulfilled a similar purpose: to homologate the 750cc FZR for racing, in this case the American AMA Superbike series. Spec is far lower than the OW01, but so are current prices and if you're looking to get into a collectible Yamaha, this would be a far more affordable proposition, and one you could actually ride.

The FZR750RU weighed in at around 460lbs dry, had the typical 17" front and 18" rear wheels of the era, used a close-ratio six-speed gearbox, and was powered by a 749cc version of Yamaha's five-valve "Genesis" inline four. Interestingly, the very limited-production RU was the only 750cc Yamaha imported during this era: there was no "normal" version, at least here in the USA. Of course, if you wanted a Yamaha sportbike during the late 1980s, you had plenty of other options to choose from: the light and nimble FZR400, the everyman steel-framed FZR600, even the big-bore FZR1000.

Five-valve engines are pretty rare and, although Volkswagen and Ferrari have dabbled in the technology, it was Yamaha's calling card for years. Typically, you're looking at three intake and two exhaust valves, and although complexity is increased, there are multiple theoretical benefits. The three smaller valves flow fuel and air more effectively and fill the cylinder faster than two larger valves that would fit into the same space, and the configuration creates a compact combustion chamber so the mixture can burn more efficiently. In addition, the smaller, lighter intake valves have less inertia and put less stress on the springs that close them.

This particular example of the FZR750RU looks very clean and well cared-for, with original parts, owner's manuals, and lots of quality photographs. It's especially nice that the seller includes several pictures of the bike without its bodywork, showing off the aluminum Deltabox frame and other bits that can accumulate grime and significant wear. What is the price for this bit of Yamaha history? The seller is asking $7,500 and can be contacted here: Bike is SOLD

It should also be noted that Jay has been an RSBFS regular for years, buying and selling nearly 10 bikes through the site in that time.

From the Seller: 1988 Yamaha FZR750RU for Sale

One owner 1988 Yamaha FZR750RU limited edition homologation motorcycle.  One of 200 imported into the US, only  4420 original miles, a rare bike that will continually rise in value.  The single owner took great care of this bike, it was a weekend rider for the for the first few years then it was parked and stored, last registered in 1995.  I have most of the original paperwork and documentation, including the original owners manual, service manual, warranty manual and I have the original title.  The owner is a retired engineer, he documented and cared for the bike as you would expect.  I have a stack of index cards filled with notes about the care and service of the bike. The factory service manual has signs of use and a few hand written notes. 

I have serviced the bike and ridden it about 50 miles.  The service included replacing all fluids (brake/clutch fluid, coolant, fuel and oil), ultrasonically cleaned and rebuilt carbs, drained and replaced the fuel.  I put a lot of time into cleaning the brake caliper pistons and seals.  I also replaced the rear brake pads, a few pieces of factory hardware and re-installed the stock screen.  The bike includes a few oil filters, a NOS set of tires, a aftermarket screen, a rear stand and some other small bits.  This bike is ready to ride except for the potentially original tires currently fitted.  Everything felt good when I rode it around but I haven't pushed it very hard. 

Targeted for the American market, the FZR750RU is not especially valuable yet and may never achieve the desirability of the OW01 but, with just 200 examples of the 1988 model built to exactly meet AMA minimum production numbers, it certainly has the potential to appreciate significantly, and it's a very handsome example of 80s sportbike style.

-tad

Featured Listing: 1988 Yamaha FZR750RU for Sale in California!
Yamaha May 28, 2017 posted by

CA Fun: 1984 Yamaha RZV 500R

Today we have a bit of two stroke fun located in California. The Yamaha RZV model was built for the Japanese home market only. Notable changes came with the "Z" descriptor, including an all-aluminum frame and a "made to comply with Japanese regulations" restricted output engine. From a chassis and weight department, the RZV is the model you want. From a power perspective, you wanted the export-market RZ500. In stock configuration, the RZV is the more rare of the two bikes, given that it was not exported widely outside of Japan, but any of the big RZs could be considered reasonably rare in the United States (where we sadly received none).

1984 Yamaha RZV500R for sale on eBay

From the seller:
1984 RZV 500R All Original!
For being 33 years old, this bike is in great condition!
All fluids have just been changed (Motor, Forks, Brake Lines, Radiator) at 5000 km. Brand New Tires!
Bike runs and drives perfect!
5192 kilometers on the dash = 3226 US Miles.
Bike was imported from Japan and sent to California in a shipping container years ago. I have no paperwork. Vin number is available upon request to verify status.

The seller notes fluid changes, but no mention of engine seals. These are the items that are both critical to proper engine function (and longevity) and the more costly items to replace due to the invasive nature of where they are placed. I would much rather ride an old smoker that has old fluids but new seals than the other way around. Thus, it would appear that while this bike has low miles and looks to be in great condition, some maintenance work will be necessary to avoid seizing due to an air leak condition.

This CA located bike is also missing something else that is critical; a title and plates. This may not be a big deal in some states (where a bill of sale will open the door to riding nirvana), but is a potentially huge issue in California where licensing regs are not so lax. CA plated bikes have a gold plating for a reason, and the lack of registration on this one does have some impact to value.

The good side, this bike looks to be in decent condition for the age. There exists the requisite corrosion that one would expect from a Japanese import; this is common to any bike that lives near the seaboard. The plastics look great (with a possible crack on the upper right side panel and a missing fastener which could spell a broken tab), as does the paint and seat. The stock pipes look a bit peppered (or possibly just dirty), but nothing extreme to my eye. Even the wheels look decent, and the bike comes shod with new tires.

The big RZs are the mainstay of the grey-market world here in the US. Values have been solid for the past several years, with truly excellent examples commanding the highest prices. Being all stock is a real plus for this bike; it can only be all-original once. The location might be a positive for some, but the lack of registration and title is definitely a minus. A CA plate could have added another $1-2k to the price tag. All in all, this appears to be a solid example of the RZV breed. The internet does not wholly agree at this time, however: Bidding is just over $6k with a few days to go, and the bike has not met reserve. The BIN is set for $14k - pretty high dollar for the model - so it is possible this seller will be holding out for a while. Check it out here, and then let us know which you would prefer: RZ or RZV? Good Luck!!

MI

CA Fun: 1984 Yamaha RZV 500R