Posts by tag: Two Stroke

Suzuki August 20, 2014 posted by

COMMENTS WANTED: Gray Market 1991 Suzuki RGV250 VJ22

rgv1

Most of my posts on this site are of bikes commemorating a rider who rode the same model to glory, or a bike having some cool 1st generation technology.  But this post is going to be a little different.

When I was a younger the MotoGP series consisted of 125, 250 and 500cc machines, so my dream bikes were the big thumping machines like the Cagiva 592.  NOTE:  If you don't know why the Cagiva 592 was so special, I suggest you do a little browsing on Youtube.

When the top level MotoGP series moved over to the big 4 strokes so did I, and soon I was lusting after things like the ZX7R and OW01.   Two strokes kind of fell off my personal radar, but lately I have been thinking of adding one to a little collection I am starting to build, with the RGV250 being the target.

Now the good news is that I have managed to convince my girl that another bike won't be an issue.  The bad news is I don't really know enough about the RGV (and early 90's two strokes) to determine if a particular example is good or bad.  So I thought I would do this post and readers with more two stroke experience and/or experience with this model can comment and share their thoughts.  I think it would be useful to both myself and other RSBFS.com readers who are also not as familiar with these bikes, if someone can share info about what to look for when considering buying one of these classic two stroke bikes. Remember, we were all ignorant about bikes at one time!

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1991 Suzuki RVG250 VJ22 for sale on eBay

This is a gray market 1991 Suzuki RGV250 VJ22 in the classic Suzuki Blue and White bodywork.  It looks to my eyes to be in excellent condition, and the seller provides a decent amount of photos and info about the condition, The seller also indicates that he has a US title, which seems to be the big challenge with gray market bikes.  Plus it seems to have uber low kilometers/mileage.

rgv3

So is this bike worth the asking price of 7500 USD?   Is this a bike more for collectors or for daily riders?  I look forward to reading the comments section of this post and seeing what the two stroke faithful on this site think.  NOTE:  While I know some people will say "if you really want it, get it regardless of the price",  I would like to keep the discussion focused on the merits of this particular RGV250 from a value standpoint.

-Martin

COMMENTS WANTED: Gray Market 1991 Suzuki RGV250 VJ22
Suzuki August 14, 2014 posted by

More 80′s Madness! 1986 Suzuki RG500 Walter Wolf Replica

Update 8.14.2014: I had this post scheduled for today but the listing was pulled down early. Anyone from here snag it? Thanks for the post Tad. -dc

The term “race replica” gets thrown around pretty often. But as racing machinery has become more and more specialized, race replicas have become more and more of an “in name only” proposition, a paint and tape job featuring the exact same technical specifications, with a higher price and additional free advertising for the sponsors. I mean, I love the Repsol Hondas, but let’s be honest: they’ve got little to nothing in common with the race bikes.

But that wasn’t always the case, and Suzuki’s RG500 Gamma was much closer to the real thing than you’re likely to find at the dealer today.

1986 Suzuki RG500 Gamma R Side

Another one of the unusual powerplants from the wild-west period of the 1980’s is this Suzuki RG500 Gamma and its square four. Basically two water-cooled parallel twins geared to a common crankshaft, it was powerful, lightweight and, compared to Yamaha’s RD500, was much less compromised for the road: weighing in at under 400lbs dry, it made almost 100bhp at the crank. With typically brutal two-stroke power delivery and a short wheelbase that made it a very serious tool for experienced riders.

1986 Suzuki RG500 Gamma Tank

While “Walter Wolf” sounds like the villain from a James Bond film or possibly a children’s cartoon, it was actually the name of oil magnate and motorsports lover/sponsor who sponsored teams at the highest level of competition in both Formula 1 and Moto GP. Walter Wolf was born in Austria, but a Canadian citizen and the racing team was based out of the UK. Still with me? He’s quite a character, and still very much alive, although much of his story is too long and strange to recount here…

1986 Suzuki RG500 Gamma Rear Engine

From the original eBay listing: 1986 RG500 Gamma Walter Wolf Replica

This 1986 Walter Wolf RG500 is in beautiful condition for its age. All pictures are recently taken. The bike does have a few flaws such as one of the side rear panels is missing a tab on the right side the front fairing has been repaired do to cracking which appears to be very well done. The belly pan has some gas damage as well as a few scratches. I have been a collector of the 2 stoke street bikes and I don't like being surprised and don't want to surprise anyone else so I will disclose everything I know about this gamma. The rear brake is not leaking but could possibly use a rebuild or bleeding. The bike runs very well with fresh tires and battery. Pictures do not do this beauty justice this bike is stunning in person. It has gross valves and air filters on it and also comes with stock seat and air box parts. The belly pan is not really too visible but it is damaged from fuel. There is a small repair of the sticker in the picture and the clock foam has a small imperfection

1986 Suzuki RG500 Gamma Dash

Production for the Gamma isn’t exactly rare by European bike standards, with just north of 9,000 built between 1985 and 1987. But with only 100 genuine Walter Wolf replicas produced in total, these are a rare edition of an already very desirable bike. It’s located in Cali, but it’s not clear if the bike is titled for road use, which would make this "WW" even more special.

1986 Suzuki RG500 Gamma Front Wheel

With a $20,000 starting bid, there are no takers as yet, although that seems like a pretty fair price, considering what regular Gammas go for… And that black and red paint really flatters the slightly slab-sided styling of the bike.

-tad

1986 Suzuki RG500 Gamma R Side No Fairing

More 80′s Madness! 1986 Suzuki RG500 Walter Wolf Replica
Honda August 11, 2014 posted by

Gray Matter: 1993 Honda NSR 250 SE

NSR250SE_1

When it comes to gray market two strokes, the Honda NSR models dominate the landscape. They are far and away the most populous (if not the most popular) of the imported smokers in the United States. Sure, there are competing models from other manufacturers that are highly sought after (RG, RGV, RZ, RZV), but Honda seems to be winning the numbers game. Which brings us to this beautiful NSR250 SE model. Read on fellow enthusiasts, as this seller knows the right way to sell a bike: detailed pictures, good descriptions, and a willingness to point out minor blemishes.

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1993 Honda NSR 250 SE for sale on eBay

NSR250SE_5

From the seller:
The history for this motorcycle isn't very long. It was imported by an individual roughly 15 years ago. Within about a year of this happening it was sold to another individual who used the motorcycle for amateur racing. He raced the motorcycle for I believe 2 or 3 seasons. After that it was stored in a heated garage since last year when I purchased it.

The motorcycle has a street legal Michigan title with the correct make and 11 digit vin. However, it does NOT have the correct year. It's listed as a 1988 instead of a 1993. If this bothers you then please do not bid on the auction.

NSR250SE_2

This bike is far from stock. It is an imported, ex-racer that has gone through a transformation, restored to former glory and well beyond. This is a bike that practically begs to be ridden; zero mile collectors please look elsewhere. Somehow this is the kind of smoker that appeals to me most. Yes, I like the collector value of the stock models (history does have some appeal, after all), but something like this was made (and modified) to be ridden. The seller has posted a lot of great pictures, and provided a ton of detail on the history and current state of the bike. This is a no reserve auction with the current bid at a paltry 5,600 (!). Check it out here, and then dream of getting it on the pipe as you shriek through the canyons. You know you want to.

Gray Matter:  1993 Honda NSR 250 SE
Honda August 10, 2014 posted by

Quirky Track Day Fun: 1985 Honda NS400R for Sale

While I’m not the biggest fan of the 1980’s in terms of style, I love the free-for-all philosophy that went into motorcycle design of the period: four-strokes, two-strokes, and rotaries. Turbos. One, two, three, and four cylinder engines, innovative suspensions, and all manner of weirdness.

This Honda NSR400R embodies some of the best features of the era, when experimentation and new ideas seemed to be popping out of the woodwork.

1985 Honda NSR400R R Front

In general, Honda has become a very conservative manufacturer, although a few of their more recent offerings show off a bit of that old experimental spirit as they try to produce some actually useful, interesting motorcycles for normal riders, instead of chasing the ever-decreasing market share of pure headbanging motorcycles we’re all here to read about.

1985 Honda NSR400R L Rear

All of Honda’s NSR bikes are pure racing or race-replica two-stroke motorcycles, often over-the-counter, turnkey factory race bikes like the NSR250. The NSR400R fell into the latter category: a streetbike meant to evoke Honda’s pure race machines.

1985 Honda NSR400R Dash

This bike featured a liquid-cooled, two-stroke 90° V3 with the two flanking cylinders canted forward and the middle one pointing up, and put 72hp through a six-speed transmission, making it very quick for a middleweight sports machine. Period reviews refer to it being a very polished bike, with little of the unrefined frenzy common to two-strokes: liquid cooling quiets the clatter somewhat, and Honda’s ATAC power-valve smooths the power delivery and plumps up the low end. Power still comes on in a two-stroke rush, just a more dignified, manageable rush. Very Honda.

With unusual modular wheels and very light weight, handling was some of the best of the period, which makes the fact that these weren’t available in the States more of a shame.

1985 Honda NSR400R L Front

From the original eBay listing: 1985 NSR400R for Sale

Very rare 3 cylinder 2 stroke purchased from a private Honda collection in the Northeast got home put fresh gas in it and started right up. 13,392 original miles very nice condition sorry no title.

With the slightly dull, all-black fairings instead of customary Honda graphics or the traditional red/white/blue paint, and a bit of surface rust on the exhaust, this is clearly meant for one thing and one thing only: budget track-day thrashing. With workman like number-plates, safety wiring, and Dzuz fasteners for easy maintenance, it has all the features required and keeps costs down.

1985 Honda NSR400R R Rearset

But that’s a shame, since such a cool bike deserves at least a nice, ten-foot track bike paint job. At the very least, I’d get some aftermarket fairings painted up decently and ditch those stuck on numberplates for a solo-tailpiece and a bit of foam padding: if you can’t title this thing for the road, you might as well go all-in!

Honestly, I’d love to pick something like this up. My main concern would be finding good tires for it!

-tad

1985 Honda NSR400R R Side

Quirky Track Day Fun: 1985 Honda NS400R for Sale
Aprilia August 3, 2014 posted by

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

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 July 26, 2014 posted by

Even Better Than the Real Thing? Yamaha YZR500 GP Replica

This Yamaha YZR500 GP Replica is the rarest of the rare, a one-of-a-kind opportunity to buy a one-of-a-kind motorcycle. Meant to recreate Yamaha’s iconic year 2000 OWK6 racing machine in the classic Marlboro livery, this bike may not be the original article, but is a hugely impressive machine in terms of the enthusiasm and money invested. Powered by a tuned 500cc V4 two-stroke engine and suspended by Yamaha R6 bits, with an authentic replica frame and bodywork, this might be the closest you’ll ever get to riding an actual GP machine.

2000 Yamaha YZR500 Replica L Front

I am no expert on these bikes, so I’d love to see the peanut gallery weigh in as to the accuracy of this replica. I’ve been next to full-on WSB and Moto GP motorcycles and it’s always interesting to me how they still basically look like motorcycles. Racing cars, especially Formula 1 machines, really look nothing like actual cars, aside from the four round rubber bits. But racing motorcycles? It’s the details that really impress, since they have the same basic silhouette as their road-going counterparts, but chock-full of amazing details.

2000 Yamaha YZR500 Replica L Side Engine

From the original eBay listing: 2000 Yamaha YZR500 GP Replica for Sale

A replica of the legendary Yamaha YZR500 from year 2000. Based on a chassi handbuilt in aluminium by Mick Costin  "Costin motorcycle enginering" Sydney Australia. An exact replica but made to accept the Yamaha RD500LC 2 stroke v4 engine. Also rear sets and suspension linkages comes from Mick. This one has a 1985 1GE engine rebuilt with new bearings, oil seals, clutch, pistons, and it is tuned "TSI mods" done by Orluff racing in sweden. 1 mm overbore. Samco silicon hoses for the modified Yamaha R6 radiator, Jim lomas custom made exhausts in stainless steel with carbon silencers. New Mikuni TM28 flatslide carburettors with new K&N Filters. The bike was run in a dyno bench in may 2014 and has 99 hp on the rear wheel. Forks, triple clamps, swingarm, rims and rear brakes comes from a 2006 Yamaha R6. Rear shock and front fender in carbon comes from a Yamaha TZ250, PVM radial front brake master cylinder, goodridge steel brake hoses to tociko 4 pot calipers. Galfer wave brake discs front and rear, new galfer brake pads, Fuel tank is a heavy modified unit from a VFR400 nc30 with a Pingel dual outlet fuel tap. Fairings are copys in glasfiber made by Motoforza from a 2000 YZR500 painted in Marlboro red. Standard RD 500 tacho and temp gauge, New Regina 520 chain and Afam alu sprockets, Only scrubbed in Michelin power supersport tires, The bike has only been ridden twice since it was built. I have many more pictures taken from building this bike that i will send to seriosly intrested buyer.

2000 Yamaha YZR500 Replica R Rear

I’m seriously impressed with the dedication and money that went into creating this motorcycle, but I’m not actually sure what you’d do with this thing after you buy it: it’s not the genuine article, so it’s a tough call for collectors, and it’s very, very pricey for a track day or vintage racing junky. On the plus side: you can actually ride it, without worrying you'll crash a priceless and historic racebike.

Or maybe, if you live in a more permissive state, it can, as the seller mentions, be registered for road use… How hilarious would that be? Suction cup a little projector-beam headlamp and a bicycle taillight, a pair of LED turn signals… I’d read recently that Britain actually has a special “track bike” MOT that allows limited use of track day bikes lacking the usually required road equipment to get to and from the racecourse during daylight hours.

2000 Yamaha YZR500 Replica R Side Engine

It’s certainly a very nice curiosity, and one I hope finds the right buyer. At $27,000 with the Reserve Not Met, that’s going to be a tall order. Please also note that the bike is currently in Sweden, if you didn't notice the non-USA license plates on the cars in the background of the photographs. Regardless, there’s very little time left on this auction, so move quickly if you want to get your hands on this one-of-a-kind motorcycle!

-tad

2000 Yamaha YZR500 Replica L Side

 

Even Better Than the Real Thing? Yamaha YZR500 GP Replica