Posts by tag: Two Stroke

Yamaha October 20, 2014 posted by

Smoking Smoker: 1980 Yamaha TZ350 with Nico Bakker Frame for Sale

1980 Yamaha TZ350 R Side

I seem to be headed backwards in time with my recent posts… This Yamaha TZ350 is a little bit older than I’d normally write about here, but was too cool to pass up.

Yamaha’s water-cooled TZ bikes were pure production roadrace motorcycles with no direct street versions. Weighing in at about 250 pounds [dry] with about 65hp, they were produced between 1973 and 1981. The TZ350 went through a number of iterations, coded “A” through “H,” with constant improvements to keep them competitive.

In 1976, the first major revisions to the frame appeared, and used a monoshock rear suspension that replaced the early dual-shock version. This particular bike, however, does away with the factory frame and substitutes a very cool piece from Danish specialist Nicco Bakker.

1980 Yamaha TZ350 R Side Unfaired

Interesting, while the Nico Bakker frame is a rare, high-performance accessory, it may also have been necessary: the “F” and “G” model TZ350’s apparently had a tendency to fail around the headstock, due to the thinner-gauge tubing used, requiring reinforcement or replacement.

In either case, Nico Bakker is well-known for his racing efforts, although he had a hand in developing the Zane-era Laverda roadbike frames as well, and while those bikes do have their flaws, the frame is definitely not one of them.

1980 Yamaha TZ350 L Side Unfaired

From the original eBay listing: 1980 Yamaha TZ350 with Nico Bakker Frame for Sale

This bike won the Latino American Championship 1980 Rider Eduardo Aleman
Special frame “Nico Bakker” Holland-made, the best aftermarket complete frame for TZ250/350 in this years.
Special Yamaha TZ350 engine, very fast, 6 transfers [a reference to the 6-port cylinders that were introduced on the 1979 model? -td]
Special Krober ignition and Krober electronic tachometer
Special Yamaha big radiator for better cooling and more power
Special 18” magnesium wheels “Campagnolo and 3 aluminum Zanzani floating disc brakes with Yamaha magnesium calipers and Brembo front radial pump.
Special pipes.
Very light bike: 75% Poggipolini titanium and ergal bolts.
This bike was rebuilt with new seals, bearings, rings, etc. Ready to race.
We also have other same bike and frame, no speical parts $13,999USD+ shipping worldwide

I normally try to reprint the original eBay listing as posted, but the editor in me couldn’t keep from making some updates/translation to make it readable...

There are a few days left on the listing, and the bike is being offered at $15,999. If you’re looking for a classic racer to actually ride, this might be the ticket: with just enough racing history to be cool, and lots of cool go-fast bits.

-tad

1980 Yamaha TZ350 L Side

Smoking Smoker: 1980 Yamaha TZ350 with Nico Bakker Frame for Sale
Honda October 14, 2014 posted by

Fresh From the Crate: 1989 Honda RS250

1989 Honda RS250 R Side

Here in the good ol’ US of A, 250cc motorcycles are generally lumped in with scooters in terms of the respect they get. And while scooters may be fun to ride, no one wants to be seen doing it. And two-strokes? Emissions legislation killed those by the early 1980’s so most Americans’ experience with smokers involves knobby tires and Renthal bars.

But if you’re a racing fan, or grew up in Europe, bikes like this Honda RS250 would have you drooling like a squid over a turbocharged Hayabusa with a ghost flame paint job. At a recent track day, I came across a beautiful Rothman’s NSR250R that attracted plenty of attention, although everyone gawking at it seemed to be speaking with a funny accent…

1989 Honda RS250 Engine

1989 Honda RS250 for sale on eBay

Make no mistake, the RS250 is no joke. It’s no learner bike, or inexpensive track ride: it’s a pure racing motorcycle, and needs the upkeep you’d expect of a GP machine. Powered by a nearly square 54x54.5mm two-stroke v-twin that snarled out over 90hp and weighed 223lbs dry.

1989 Honda RS250 Dash

From the original eBay listing: 1989 Honda RS250 for Sale

A truly unique opportunity!

This is a brand new, never ridden Honda RS250 Grand Prix bike from 1989. It has been kept in one owners collection on display from new. As the photographs show it is in exceptional condition apart from some age-related deterioration (tyres cracked etc.) and fading at places on the fairing where at some point it had stickers. The build quality of these GP Honda's is stunning and as would be expected everything is totally original down to the original Japanese factory warning stickers!

This is sure to be a great investment as prices for GP 2-strokes continue to rise.

1989 Honda RS250 Clutch

While on paper it seems like this RS250 be comparable to more familiar RGV or TZ, the Honda is generally considered to be less privateer-friendly because of its very high state of tune, with a harder edge and a less-forgiving nature.

Of course, you may not be worried about riding this one, since riding it would basically ruin the fact that it’s basically a brand-new motorcycle from 1989…

1989 Honda RS250 Airbox

Bidding is up over $17,500 with a bit more time left on the auction. It’s located in the UK, but the seller is ready to ship the bike anywhere in the world.

-tad

1989 Honda RS250 L Side

Fresh From the Crate: 1989 Honda RS250
Yamaha September 30, 2014 posted by

The Whippet: 1986 Yamaha SDR200 for Sale

1986 Yamaha SDR200 R Side Front

There’s an interesting ongoing discussion in the comments section on this site regarding exactly what qualifies as a “rare sport bike.” Bikes seem to fall into three general categories: exotics like Bimota or limited-edition Ducatis. Bikes that weren’t rare when new, but have become rare simply because good examples have become scarce through attrition, like the early GSX-R models.

But my favorite are the quirky, unusual bikes that are rarely seen outside of their home markets, or failed to find an audience when new. This Yamaha SDR200 definitely falls into that third category.

1986 Yamaha SDR200 L Rear

It’s not glamorous, or especially powerful. There are no bits of carbon bodywork, or titanium fasteners, or magnesium engine cases. It does feature a delicate, gorgeous trellis frame and swingarm combo that looks more “Maserati Birdcage” than “Ducati Monster.”

1986 Yamaha SDR200 R Side

With its three-quarters scale proportions, this bike would probably not be the best choice for many “American-sized” riders. But if you’re petite, or don’t care that you look a bit ridiculous as a big man on a little bike, this might be a perfect, unusual ride. It certainly isn’t tame: with 34bhp on tap from the two-stroke single that featured Yamaha’s YPVS power-valve system, 6 gears to play with, and only 230 pounds [dry] to push, this thing should be an absolute laugh-riot. With those skinny tires, at or near its 100mph top speed, I’m sure people you’ve passed would be convinced they’d just been blown off by a jet-powered bicycle!

1986 Yamaha SDR200 R Side Engine

From the original eBay listing: 1986 Yamaha SDR200 for Sale

This bike has 13,700km on the clock (8200 miles) but has about 500 miles on the complete restoration. I had this bike taken down to the bare frame (see pics), everything was gone through. I doubt you will ever find one like this again, it was a fun project and somewhat taxing at times finding parts but they do exist, there is a large cult following in Japan and a company that specifically specializes in SDR200s. This bike is currently registered and plated here in California good until February of 2015.

I will try to recall the best I can the mechanical here. The motor was taken apart and installed a new piston ring set and piston, base gasket, head gasket, fork seals, clutch basket, alternator gasket, oil pump gasket, water pump gasket, water pump seal, needle and seat for the carburetor, float bowl o-ring, airbox to carb boot, new triple clamp bearings, new wheel bearings, new steering bearings, new swing arm and linkage bearings, new air filter, new battery with trickle charger, and new chain. These items were replaced not because they had to be, but I wanted it new.

1986 Yamaha SDR200 Rear

It’s pretty easy to see why this thing earned the nickname “Whippet”, and tt strangely reminds me of the Sachs MadAss: there's something playful about it. The design is fully-realized and mature, even if the bike's raison d'être is hooliganism.

The seller is asking $6,200 which seems like a whole lot of cash for a quirky little two-stroke with no racing history, regardless of how much money he’s sunk into the restoration. On the other hand, if you are a fan of these, I’d imagine you won’t see another one this nice in the US anytime soon, and the price is fully one-tenth the price of a Ducati Panigale Superleggera, which makes it seem a bit like a bargain…

-tad

1986 Yamaha SDR200 R Front

The Whippet: 1986 Yamaha SDR200 for Sale
Aprilia September 20, 2014 posted by

Pint-Sized Sportbike: Aprilia RS125 for Sale

2009 Aprilia RS125 L Side

We’re on a roll here this week, with quasi-, barely, or not-even-remotely road-legal machinery. This Aprilia RS125 might, depending on your finesse with DMV chicanery, be made roadable: it does feature all the requisite equipment, including lights, and mounts for mirrors and signals, since it was originally intended to be a street-legal motorcycle.

The RS125 was built from 1992 until 2012, when production of the two-stroke, single-cylinder 125 was halted to make way for the new four-stroke RS4 125. This version of the bike features updated styling to match the RSV1000 that was all sharp angles, edges, and stealth-fighter shapes.

It’s a very muscular-looking bike for a 125, although they’re very small in person.

2009 Aprilia RS125 Screen

Overseas, bikes like this have long been the dream of 16-year-olds looking to impress their buddies: unlike here in the USA, where a 1300cc sportbike is just a credit application away from reality for anyone with a license, most European countries have a tiered licensing structure that prevents riders from buying larger-displacement bikes for the first couple years after obtaining their license, or before a certain age.

2009 Aprilia RS125 Cockpit

It also helps that motorcycle road racing is very popular across the pond, making 125 and 250 race-styled motorcycles somewhat aspirational machines for young riders looking to emulate their riding heroes. Here in the US, they occupy a sort of hazy area, since emissions laws basically killed off the breed years ago. They’re still beloved of petrol-heads and two-stroke junkies, largely forgotten by everyone else. But those fans are a rabid bunch, and two-strokes from the trackmaestros at Aprilia always generate interest when they come up for sale.

2009 Aprilia RS125 R Side Fairing

The bike appears to be for sale at a dealership in Portland, Oregon. The original eBay listing contains basically NO information about the bike, but does include a bunch of additional pictures that are well worth a look: 2009 Aprilia RS125 for Sale

2009 Aprilia RS125 Rear Wheel

Unfortunately, unlike the RS250 that came with top-shelf components all-around, the 125 really is more of a budget tool. Although you shouldn’t confuse it with something like a Ninja 300: de-restricted, these can make as much as 30hp, and with a weight under 300lbs, these are serious motorcycles.

2009 Aprilia RS125 Tail

The asking price is $5,000 which seems to be a very good deal, considering that it has 5 miles on the clock. It looks to be in great shape, although a history of modifications would be much appreciated: the tuning parts that have been fitted could conceivably have a significant effect on value.

-tad

2009 Aprilia RS125 R Side

Pint-Sized Sportbike: Aprilia RS125 for Sale
Aprilia September 17, 2014 posted by

Thank You for Smoking: 1995 Aprilia RS250

1995 Aprilia RS250 R Side Front

The goal in filling my fantasy garage is to have as wide a range of engine configurations as possible: a thumpy Ducati v-twin, a shrieking four in a big-bore MV, an older KTM Duke single, a howling triple Laverda. But I’ll also need a two-stroke. Maybe an old Kawasaki H1 triple, or something like this very nice Aprilia RS250

The elemental RS250 used a heavily updated version of Suzuki’s RGV250 two-stroke v-twin engine, tuned to make 60hp, with sleek bodywork that has aged extremely well, unlike some of Aprilia’s more recent offerings.

The whole package is designed with handling in mind, and features plenty of very trick details, including the distinctive swingarm and triple disc brakes that would work just as well on a bike that weighs 100lbs more. It has a reputation for being a manic machine with light weight and two-stroke power delivery, it’s really most at home on the race track.

1995 Aprilia RS250 L Side

Tragically killed off by strict emissions standards that don’t look very favorably on bikes that leave clouds of blue smoke hanging in their wake, these bikes have a very enthusiastic following and always sell well.

This one also features almost enough spares to make a whole second bike!

From the original eBay listing: 1995 Aprilia RS250 for Sale

This is a low mileage, exotic motorcycle with lots of spare parts. I have a brand new spare engine for this bike, a spare windshield, spare front body work, and much more. There are two stands - one front and one back. It runs on Amsoil 2 stroke synthetic oil and there is new oil in the crank case. I have only ridden this bike for short jaunts, but I do start it up from time to time. I inherited it from a friend and he was the original owner. It has a clean tile and is a street legal bike which is ready to ride - and this price includes all the spare parts

This particular paint-scheme is much more striking than the later grey/black/silver design. For style, I like these earlier dashes with the easily-detached speedo/idiot lights. The later dash may have been perfectly useful and includes a handy lap-timer, but the super-modern design took all of about five minutes to look dated. All it really needs is a bit of script that reads “Turbo” and it would fit perfectly in a 1980’s sports coupe.

1995 Aprilia RS250 Speedo

I’m still not completely sold on the buzzy, nasal sound of two-srokes, but all the rabid stroker fans out there can’t be wrong. And I love the idea of a lightweight motorcycle that punches above its weight: nothing like passing a liter bike on a 250 to make you feel like a riding god! Hopefully, one of these days I’ll get the chance to try one of these out.

There are several days left on this auction, and bidding is up over $8,000. This seems a bit on the high-side [pun!] for RS250’s, but all those extra parts may be contributing to the interest in this bike, along with that desirable title. Although this isn’t exactly an ideal bike for the road, unless that road ends at a racetrack!

-tad

1995 Aprilia RS250 R Side

Thank You for Smoking: 1995 Aprilia RS250
Ducati September 10, 2014 posted by

Craigslist Gems: 10 Mile Yamaha RZ350 and 350 Mile Ducati 750 F1A

First up is this submission from regular reader and frequent commentor "SixthGear" in this 1985 Yamaha RZ350 that reportedly has 10 miles. It's listed in San Francisco for $13,500.

1985 Yamaha RZ350 for sale

The second bike was emailed to me by several readers for consideration. We've actually seen this one before in this post but I agree that this 350 mile Ducati 750 F1A is worth noting again. It's listed in New York for a little less than $30k.

1985 Ducati 750 F1A for sale

Thanks to everyone for their submissions!

dc

Craigslist Gems:  10 Mile Yamaha RZ350 and 350 Mile Ducati 750 F1A