Posts by tag: FIve Valve

Bimota May 1, 2018 posted by

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
Bimota April 9, 2018 posted by

Old School Superbike: 1997 Bimota YB11 for Sale

Bimota's formula for success involved plentiful, reliable engines supplied by outside manufacturers, top-shelf braking and suspension components, frames designed with pure performance in mind, all wrapped in sleek, often wildly-styled bodywork. The use of well-developed and widely available engines meant they managed to survive much longer than most other boutique motorcycle manufacturers and their style and performance mean they're pretty striking motorcycles in the flesh, and I'm sure you'd get tons of questions about a Bimota YB11 like this one anywhere you parked it.

The YB11 is obviously an old-school analog motorcycle, with a torquey engine and a peak power figure that is unimpressive by today's standards. But keep in mind that the only thing letting modern motorcycles get away with their outrageous power figures are the very sophisticated electronics that keep riders with less than professional skill levels from crashing into the nearest hedge. This was a full-blown exotic superbike in its day, and the 145hp available from the YB11's five-valve Genesis engine is plenty to have fun with for even an experienced rider, considering the bike's 400lb dry weight and 170mph potential. There's no digital safety net here, and every single horse is present and accounted for, and happy to do the bidding of your right hand. Just make sure you know exactly what you're asking them to do before you twist that throttle...

I'd read that the YB11 has an "odd" riding position and can confirm: the legs are weirdly cramped and there's a long reach to the bars. Maybe it makes more sense on the move, or with time you just get used to it, but by comparison, the SB6R parked next to the one I sat on seemed surprisingly comfortable... Like every other Bimota, maintenance is an issue here. Parts for the Yamaha engine and transmission may be relatively plentiful, but the beam frames of the YB and SB series are wrapped tightly around them, making access difficult with the bodywork or even the engine in place. Great for the experienced home mechanic, as you're basically looking at a lot of labor instead of expensive parts, but still a pain if you don't like disassembling your motorcycle every time you want to adjust the carburetors or valves...

I'm a fan of 90s Bimotas in general, mostly because they're both extremely exotic and currently extremely affordable, and they epitomize all that's stereotypically good and bad about Italian motorcycles: sophisticated materials, high-end components, striking looks, and sharp handling, combined with indifferent build-quality, incomplete development, and unreliable electrical systems. In terms of style, I don't think the YB11 is one of their best efforts, but it's still great-looking motorcycle and parts for the engine at least should be no trouble. You're on your own if you need fork seals or bodywork though. Still interested? The asking price for this Italian exotic is just $6,700, although there is an issue with the mileage...

From the original eBay listing: 1997 Bimota YB11 for Sale

Specialized Motors is proud to offer this Bimota YB11 . This bike was bought to put into our motorcycle in 2003 with 5800 miles since then this bike has been cared for and stored in our Museum, as of now the gauge pack is inop - MILEAGE AND TEMP ARE NOT WORKING, this seems to be a common issue with these Bimota motorcycle. We estimate 500-1000 additional miles BUT WE CAN NOT LIST MILES , BIKE WILL BE SOLD AS IS . Bike is in excellent condition never down starts and runs perfect . Bike will be sold mileage exempt ot TMU (true mileage unknown)

Speaking of "unreliable Italian electrical components..." Well, there are many good aftermarket options these days, and ones that look much better than the stock gauges and include everything you could possibly want to know about your motorcycle. As far as I'm concerned, the 11,000 miles indicated are a good thing for a bike as finicky as a Bimota: it means it's been functional often enough to actually be ridden regularly! Plus, inactivity seems to kill vehicles, especially Italian vehicles. It's like they're sitting there, angry at not being used, slowly corroding, drying out, crumbling...

-tad

Old School Superbike: 1997 Bimota YB11 for Sale
MZ March 22, 2018 posted by

Simple Pleasures: 1995 MZ Skorpion Sport for Sale

MZ's history is more significant than the average enthusiast realizes, especially if you're a fan of this site and/or grey market two-stroke sportbikes. "Why is that?" You might ask. Or more likely, "Who is that?" MZ, formerly MuZ was an East German manufacturer of two stroke motorcycles. Engineer Walter Kaaden actually pioneered the use of expansion chambers while working for Motorrad und Zweiradwerk to tune and increase performance of the dirty little smokers. But after factory rider Ernst Denger fled to the West, taking the company's secrets with him in a move to Suzuki [technically the East then] MZ's dominance ended and the company faded into the background. Later, they built a range of simple, very Soviet-looking bikes based around a Rotax single, but it wasn't until their mid-90s revival with bikes like this MZ Skorpion Sport that they really looked like a modern alternative to anything.

Like an East German version of Triumph's 1990s lineup, MZ's entire range was built around a common frame, and all the bikes used Yamaha's five-valve XT660 single backed by a five-speed gearbox. The frame was less top-heavy than Triumph's spine design, but the big thumper meant modern sportbike fans weaned on Japanese inline-fours were... confused, to say the least. The package made sense for the Mastiff supermoto or the Baghira adventure bike, but wasn't the ideal choice for the Traveller [guess what that one was supposed to be for] and the Sport, along with its Cup and Replica variants, and the bikes were never all that popular.

All the better for the rest of us! The Skorpion wasn't scorchingly fast in a straight line, but throw it into a set of corners and the bike was in its element: Motorcycleonline.com referred to the limited-production WP-suspended Skorpion Replica as one of the best handling bikes they'd ever tested. The lower-spec Sport seen here might not handle quite as well right out of the box, but the basic components are there and the bike just a cartridge kit and an updated shock away from similar results. There's a good reason people like to use them as the basis for affordable track and racebikes.

From the original eBay listing: 1995 MZ Skorpion Sport for Sale

Rare and nifty sport single! Yamaha, 5-valve, 660cc, liquid cooled, electric-start engine as used in Yamaha 660cc ATV's Quads. Chassis is unique English design and great handling! Manufactured in (formerly) East Germany. Stock except for Holeshot muffler. Clear title. Runs well, stops great and steers amazing! Please look at photos and ask questions. Local pickup or you handle shipping. Thanks!

At 26,000 miles, this is no garage queen, but it looks like it's in good cosmetic condition and the XT660 powerplant isn't exactly rare, so basic maintenance should be easy. Considering the bidding starts at just $1,799 with no takers yet, this should be on the short list of anyone looking to graduate from track days to racing, fans of affordable exotica, and basically anyone that's a lover of fun, honest, practical motorcycles.

-tad

Simple Pleasures: 1995 MZ Skorpion Sport for Sale
Yamaha March 14, 2018 posted by

Featured Listing: 1989 Yamaha FZR1000 for Sale

Update 3.14.2018: Turns out this one sold faster than we could post it. Congratulations to buyer and seller! -dc

A modern literbike is a relatively peaky beast: chasing horsepower without increasing displacement means ever-higher revs are required, and a six-speed box makes sense. It's telling that bikes like today's Featured Listing Yamaha's FZR1000, one of the cutting-edgy-ist sportbikes of its day, made do with just five and could still be considered fast now. Six-speed gearboxes had become the norm for motorcycles by the late 1980s, unless you were looking at cruisers, touring machines, or big-bore sportbikes. Why? Well, narrow, peaky powerbands require more gears to effectively exploit and the big-inch engines of the aforementioned six-speed exceptions had enough flexibility and torque to make them window-dressing: an extra gear just wasn't needed.

Considering that Yamaha's FZR1000 makes just 20 more claimed horses and weighs nearly 40 pounds more than a modern R6, you might think that these old-school machines would be no match for even a much smaller machine from today. But it's the 79 ft-lbs of torque from the FZR that makes it so effective: a modern literbike like the BMW S1000RR makes just a few more foot-pounds. So how did they do it? Well the GSX-R1100 obviously benefited from a few more cubes, but the smaller 1002cc FZR1000 combined Yamaha's five-valve Genesis head with their EXUP or "Exhaust Ultimate Power" valve to provide both low-end torque and high-end power.

Five-valve heads have pretty much disappeared these days, the theoretical advantages proving insufficient to outweigh the additional complexity required, but EXUP-style exhaust valves are ubiquitous, now that Yamaha's patents have expired, allowing other manufacturers to take advantage. By the late 1980s, servo-operated "power valves" were common on two-strokes, but this was the very first use of the technology in a four-stroke, and the result was a very flexible engine with a 170mph top speed.

Introduced in 1987, the 1989 redesign seen here looked similar, but included updates to the frame and engine: the original had a 989cc engine bumped to 1002cc and rotated backwards in the Deltabox frame for a shorter wheelbase. Later, the bike adopted a single headlight design to help modernize it, but you can't go wrong with a pair of big, round lamps. As you'd expect, performance and in particular handling improved throughout the bike's lifespan, but this particular model strikes a nice balance between classic superbike styling and the better performance and handling of the redesigned bike. I happen to prefer the looks of the earlier machines: the single-headlight version does look pretty sharp, but it just doesn't have the old-school round-lamp charm.

From the Seller: 1989 Yamaha FZR1000 for Sale

For being 28 years old the bike looks and runs awesome! It has less than 18k original miles, has never been dropped and has only a few minor cracks around the fairing mounting areas from the tightening of the bolts, which is normal for these older more brittle plastics (see near bolts in pics attached).

The 1989 version, crowned the "Bike of the Decade" by Cycle World, had 0-60 acceleration of 2.9 seconds, and a top speed of over 167 mph. I purchased one of these brand new in Miami Fl in 1989. I got on it and rode that bike all the way the Newline Vermont, 1460 miles in two days. It was a amazing adventure and the bike never missed a beat ripping off 700+ mile days with ease. This is truly a sports cruiser rather than a rep-racer R1. This particular dual headlight model was only produced one year, Yamaha went to the single (ugly) headlight in 1990. Anyway buy this unit, gas it up and head to for the opposite coast! We can deliver this bike anywhere in the United States for $500 enclosed and insured.

A few notes about the bike:

  • The bike was owned by 1 famous owner from new until when I bought it three years ago. It was a famous biker from the publishing world who collects bikes (Forbes magazine) and the bike was in Palm Beach all of its life until I got it. I have a copy of the title with his info on it that I can provide.
  • The bike was purchased from him for $4,500 and needed some TLC.
  • The bike had extensive work done to get the bike all up to modern running equipment. I spent over $4,500... All well documented (will provide) at Fast by Ferracci.
  • I also had a GPR slip-on imported from Italy (over $500) and it sounds awesome!
  • The carbs were also completely rebuilt, last summer 2016, and has all new gaskets - the engine runs amazingly well!
  • We over $9,500 invested in the bike. Went way overboard in its preparation. My loss, your happy smiles!

This does seem to be the version collectors will want, and in just a few years you may be kicking yourself for not taking advantage of the seller's $5,500 asking price. There are some minor cosmetic imperfections, small cracks and the like, but these are clearly documented and not unexpected on a Japanese bike from the 1980s: paint and finish were generally of a lower standard than on European bikes and they often age poorly, even when well-maintained and sparingly used. Luckily, the major servicing headaches have been taken care of and the bike is reportedly mechanically sound, meaning that this should be a great candidate for a rolling restoration, since collectors will likely want to replace that lighter, but non-original exhaust can and take care of the blemishes.

-tad

Featured Listing: 1989 Yamaha FZR1000 for Sale
Bimota December 13, 2017 posted by

Classic Superbike: 1988 Bimota YB4 Race Bike for Sale

It's fitting that the last couple of Bimota YB4s we've featured have been race bikes, since the YB4 was a competition machine first, and a road bike second. In fact, only a racing version was built at first, until World Superbike homologation rules required 200 roadgoing examples be built. The YB4 competed head-to-head with the best Japan could build, first in Formula 1, and later on in the new World Superbike series, an amazing feat for such a tiny manufacturer.

First produced in 1987, the YB4 was powered by Yamaha's 749cc five-valve "Genesis" motor and six-speed gearbox, which it ironically used to compete against Yamaha's OW01. Weight for the roadbike was 396lbs dry, and both versions used Bimota's stiff, lightweight aluminum beam frame and swingarm, so handling was predictably sublime.

Before their untimely demise, Bimota had become a manufacturer of expensive toys for well-heeled collectors or the occasional race team maybe looking for something to differentiate themselves from all of those very competitive Kawasakis and BMWs. There's nothing inherently wrong with recent Bimotas, but the Japanese Big Four and the Germans have caught up, and they didn't provide the kind of competitive advantage that bikes like the YB4 offered to racers and road riders of the 1980s.

From the original eBay listing: 1988 Bimota YB4R for Sale

1988 Bimota YB4 Racing, ex-Steve Williams Team Fowlers Yamaha UK VIN: YB4*000027

4th overall in the 1988 World TT F1 (Superbike) Championship  - that year Fogarty won it, second Joey Dunlop, both on Honda RC30. This bike was also in the top ten results of TT IOM 1988 and 1989.

Rare opportunity to acquire a piece of the early Superbike era and of Bimota history. Bike is genuine, complete and working with the right patina, fitted with the correct carbs engine with magnesium sump.

Letter of verification by Dennis Trollope with the bike.

Parade, race and collect!

Bike is currently located in 33080 Roveredo in Piano, Italy but i can get them delivered all around the World at cost, no problem. I can supply US contacts for reference.

This example comes to us via a seller that should be familiar to RSBFS and CSBFS readers. I've never met him, but he obviously has great taste in motorcycles. There is very little time left on the auction, and bidding is up to just north of $5,600. Bimota values in general and pretty low right now, but this particular machine I'd hope would buck that trend: it's got racing history and plenty of patina. It's obviously a bit scruffy around the edges, but that's pretty much par for the course with well-used racebikes.

-tad

Classic Superbike: 1988 Bimota YB4 Race Bike for Sale
Yamaha December 12, 2017 posted by

Low Miles, Even Fewer Forks: 1993 Yamaha GTS1000 for Sale

Bikes today are faster, lighter, better-handling, and safer than ever before. But while there have been huge advances in terms of electronics and the materials used to build them, they use basically the same layout and suspension since motorcycle design became codified sometime in the late 1980s. The familiar telescopic forks are most definitely a compromise, but one designers and suspension tuners have become accustomed to working around. Simply put: when motorcycle forks compress under braking it upsets weight distribution and changes suspension geometry. So if you're developing a suspension system that gets around those issues, you'd think you'd create some sort of exotic hypersports bike to show off the advantages of your high-performance design, right? Well if you're Yamaha, you put your radical Omega Chassis Concept in a stylish, buy heavy sports-tourer like this GTS1000.

It's a shame, because the GTS might otherwise have made a great case for this alternative, swingarm front end: simply put, the design works very well.  Oh sure, there isn't any huge advantage over a conventional front end in a sport-touring application like this, but there's no real downside either. And the single-sided front end should make tire swaps a breeze, although the lack of a second front disc might give faster riders a bit of pause... At least it's vented and equipped with a six-piston caliper, and period tests don't complain about stopping power.

Yamaha licensed James Parker's forkless RADD front end to create their radical grand touring machine, and installed their five-valve, 1002cc inline four and five-speed gearbox, here tuned to produce a torque-rich 100hp. So the GTS was far too heavy and underpowered to be a legitimate sportbike, but limited fuel range and luggage options meant it leaned hard on the "sport" elements of sport-touring. Only available in the US from 1993-1994, the GTS1000 didn't sell very well, as the odd suspension, high price, and relatively limited touring capabilities scared potential customers away.

 

From the original eBay listing: 1993 Yamaha GTS1000 for Sale

Selling a very rare GTS1000A with a very low low miles. 

Bike is in a beautiful condition, kept in the garage for years , recently serviced with all new fluids and filters. New fuel pump. Left mirror has a small crack from moving in the garage, not even noticeable. Please feel free to ask me with any questions . 

New tires are needed. 

Treat yourself with a beautiful gift for the holidays. 

Bike starts and runs like new. 

The Buy It Now price is set at $6,500 which is pretty steep for a GTS1000 but, with just 4,400 miles on the clock, it's probably one of lowest-mileage examples in existence.  The problem is that, unless you're a collector of oddities, there's really no point: these things can rack up crazy miles so there's really no need to find one in such unused condition unless you plan to keep it as a museum piece. And that'd be a shame, since the GTS1000 is an amazingly competent mile-muncher.

-tad

Low Miles, Even Fewer Forks: 1993 Yamaha GTS1000 for Sale