Posts by Category: Yamaha

Yamaha January 10, 2020 posted by

Winter Blues: 1984 Yamaha RZ350

As many parts of the United States are deep in the throes of falling frozen water, riding is an activity that must wait for warmer weather and more favorable road conditions. There are locales, however, where riding can commence year ’round. The southern states on both coasts serve as a great example. And it is from one of those states where we find this immaculate 1984 Yamaha RZ350, ready to ride. If you are snowed in and looking for that winter project that might require TLC and lots of mechanical know-how, stop reading now. This particular bike looks to need nothing but high RPMs and silly grins. If that is your idea of a winter project, read on!

The RZ350 is well known as the last of the factory 50-state street legal two strokes. Known as the RD350LC in other geographies, the RZ was the continued evolution of the parallel twin RD lineup, but with a healthy dose of modern tech thrown in. Sure the chassis was mild steel and not aluminum, but that did not stop the RZ from sharp handling. Brakes were triple disks, rear suspension was of the new-fangled single shock design, the venerable twin was now liquid cooled for tighter tolerances and greater power, there was a computer controlled bridge attached to the exhaust port to spread the notoriously peaky powerband around some, and the exhaust pipes were fitted with catalytic converters to help the dirty two-stroke meet EPA emissions. In most ways it was a toned down version of itself, but the beast within was woken up easily with a few common two-stroke tricks. The party only lasted two years, but it remains a very memorable party indeed.

From the seller:
1984 YAMAHA RZ350. Bike has less than 500 miles on a total renovation. Stripped to frame, wheels, bodywork all painted. Original exhausts go with the bike. Brand new Original CDI Spare also goes with the bike. The bike does not need anything. I never ride it anymore to many other things going on. Clear title, the bike is in ORMOND BEACH FL.

I have a reasonable reserve for this bike in this condition. Please do not message with silly offers. The bike sits in my climate controlled building and is available to view anytime. Everything works as you would expect. The gas cap area has been treated with an epoxy to resist any gas overflow from affecting the paint in the silly recess around the gas cap. (yes I have overfilled it) Not much more I can say. If you are looking for an RZ that requires nothing but a rider then you know what you are looking at.

There is a fair bit of interest in this particular RZ, and the eBay auction has a good number of followers. Bidding history shows the relatively quick escalation from $2k to the current bid of $7,400 – but we can be pretty certain it won’t stop there. The seller indicated that there was a reasonable reserve set for the bike, and that is clearly the case; the reserve has already been met. Whatever happens from this point forward, this bike is going home with somebody. Check it out here and let us know if this isn’t the cleanest RZ you have seen in quite some time. It has some aftermarket expansion chambers (great for waking up the beast) and the seller will even throw in the original pipes with the deal – which is great for someone looking for an original collector. The RZ is a constantly sought-after machine, and we anticipate prices to continue to rise. If you are in the market, best jump in while prices remain somewhat sane. Good Luck!!

MI

Winter Blues: 1984 Yamaha RZ350
Yamaha December 18, 2019 posted by

Fantastic Four: 1988 Yamaha FZR400

In today’s world, the thought of a serious, small bore sport bike is, well, normal. With the Kawasaki 250/300/400 Ninja series, the Honda CBR250/300R, the Yamaha YZF-R3 and the KTM RC390, there is no shortage of sharp handling and lightweight quasi racers. However this was not always the case here in the United States, where anything sub-600cc was considered a budget starter bike for the masses; built more for a price point than an apex. We all know the benefits of lightness, drilled into our head by the likes of Colin Chapman and the astounding performance capabilities of the foreign 250cc two strokes. This of course lead straight into the build up of the grey market bikes that we all know and love, and the trend that started RSBFS. And somewhere in all of that, Yamaha introduced a vanguard motorcycle to our shores: the FZR400. The FZR400 was everything we said we wanted – perhaps not quite as sharp as some of the smokers, not quite as trick as the NC30, but very, very capable – and somehow buyers turned up their noses at it. Sales lagged from 1988 through 1990, and then the party was over. Today, these are recognized for what they are: a rare, and sweet handling machine deserving of attention. Prices are starting to reflect the new attitude.

1988 Yamaha FZR400 for sale on eBay

Unlike the more sophisticated Honda, Yamaha retained a standard inline four. However this was no entry-level machine, and contained technology and features that were improvements over its bigger brother, the FZR600. For while the 600 class bike made due with a steel frame, the 400cc had a full-blown deltabox chassis made of aluminum. That kept weight down – way down – with a claimed 346 lbs dry. With a blend of light weight and decent power (64 hp claimed – with a 14k redline), the FZR400 rider needed to make good use of the six-speed gearbox to keep with bigger bikes on the straights, but excelled in braking and cornering when compared to larger machines. It is no surprise that many, many FZR400s found their way onto the racetrack; these were weapons in the right environment.

From the seller:
1990 Yamaha FZR400 . Condition is Used.
This Bike was bought in an auction from a private colector and te reason to buy was to add tis bike to my private collection. Although because of another current projects i will pass and move forward with others .

These days the FZR400 is not a high dollar machine, but scarcity of parts and good options has helped elevate the pricing somewhat. This is especially true for exceptionally original machines. But even then, a FZR400 will put a smile on your face without breaking the bank. Today’s particular machine is a mixed bag, to be sure. There are a few inconsistencies in the advert, too few pictures, and the pictures that are there show a solid – but rough – project. The seller lists this as a 1988 model, but calls it a 1990 in the text. Decoding the VIN indicates it is a 1988 model. There is both some rash on the bike, as well as a few clean looking bits. The rear mudguard hasn’t been cut, and the pipe looks to be stock. The 12,000 some odd miles don’t appear excessive, making this a potentially good project bike. I’m sure that is what the seller originally had in mind.

So if you’re looking for something to do this winter, check out this FZR400. Zero bids thus far on a $3,000 opening ask AND a reserve in place. This is a higher starting price than most 400s in this condition, but depending on where the reserve is set this could still turn out well. If you’re of smaller stature you will be amazed what you can do on one of these amazing machines from the late 1980s. Research, ask questions, and let us know if you win. Good Luck!!

MI

Fantastic Four: 1988 Yamaha FZR400
Yamaha December 14, 2019 posted by

SRX and the Single Cylinder – 1987 Yamaha SRX250

Stateside fans would probably say Yamaha are generally at the forefront of technology and leading-edge fabrication, but bucking that trend was the little SRX250 and the SRX series in general.  The 250 wound up a single-year special for us, with an eye on fun and the bottom line, and that still might be case for this Ohio example.

1987 Yamaha SRX250 for sale on eBay

Yamaha introduced a line of four-stroke singles, with a 600, 400, and 250cc models, mostly for the domestic market.  A steel tubing frame loops smoothly around the upright air-cooled engine.  On the 250, a 22mm carburetor is on one side of the head, with seeming dual exhausts from the front.  The six-speed transmission is a relatively up-to-date concession to the 10,000 rpm required to make 32 hp.  A single front disk and rear drum suffice, along with 33mm forks and monoshock rear.  Tires are almost the same width but staggered diameters with 16-inch front and 18 rear.

With 10,700 around-town miles, it would be unfair to expect a creampuff and this SRX shows average wear.  The red frame and mostly white bodywork hasn’t aged badly, but could use a little sprucing up.  The wheels look very light and are in good shape.  Mechanically, there’s just not that much to go wrong.  From the eBay auction:

Rare 1987 Yamaha SRX 250.  These bikes were only made for one year.  Great collector bike but also a cool daily driver.  Runs great and right down the road.  It does idle a little ruff.  Just needs rode.  All the plastic is solid – no cracks.  Tank is in good shape it’s for age.  As you can see in pictures it’s not perfect.  No tears in seat.  All lights work.  Have a clear title.

Better suited to an occasional errand than a commute, the SRX250 could still make a massive pit bike or learner’s permit birthday gift.  The red and white livery echoes larger Yammers from the -80’s, though it wasn’t a long-term success here.  The sensible starting bid and what looks like an easy restoration might sway a fan of the brand.

-donn

SRX and the Single Cylinder – 1987 Yamaha SRX250
Yamaha December 13, 2019 posted by

King Kenny’s steed: 1985 Yamaha RZ350

The Yamaha RZ350 lived a pretty short life on these shores, eventually leaving us in the face of EPA fleet emissions regulations and sales that paled in comparison to its bigger four-stroke stablemates. But, if you were serious about roadracing, or were a serious fan of the 500cc Grand Prix races of the time, the RZ was your mount. The little parallel twin leaves none of its inspirations to the imagination, wearing the signature of American 500cc ace Kenny Roberts front and center on its red, white and blue frame and bodywork.

1985 Yamaha RZ350 for sale on eBay

With just about 45 horsepower, none of which was available until about 6,000 RPM, the 375-pound RZ rewarded momentum and bravery over raw power and speed. Still, even with limited horsepower, the thing managed to click off a 13-second quarter mile at 100 mph in the hands of CycleWorld. That is musclecar shaming performance in a package that will turn with aplomb when you ask it to.

This 1985 Yamaha RZ350 has a few tasteful mods and has covered just under 12,000 miles in its 34 years. It is in very nice condition, with just a few scratches, dings and touch ups on the frame and body work.

From the eBay listing:

1985 Yamaha RZ350 Kenny Roberts

NO RESERVE

11,983 Miles
Fox Shock
New Battery
Powder Coated wheels
New Fork seals and oil
Brakes completely gone through
New EBC rotors and yamaha pads
KN y-boot filter
Hard to find Stock pipes
Tank is clean and rust free inside
Great condition ready to ride
Few minor scuffs as seen in photos
Touch up on frame

Buyer pays shipping (I can assist with shipping) Local pickup in Sarasota, FL area

With no reserve, this thing will sell come hell or high water. With the best part of a week to go in the auction, we’ll be curious to see what this pretty little smoker fetches.

King Kenny’s steed: 1985 Yamaha RZ350
Yamaha December 11, 2019 posted by

1/2 Liter Superbike – 1987 Yamaha RZV500

While the roadgoing two-stroke era ended here in 1979, it continued for several more years around the globe, a few makers templating their Grand Prix bikes for the showroom.  This example looks under used and has a super-clean stock appearance.

1987 Yamaha RZV500 for sale on eBay

The RZV was destined only for Japan, and differed from the rest-of-world RZ500LC mainly in its alloy chassis.  The compact V4 is actually two upright twins which are geared directly to the clutch, and the lack of a central jackshaft left room for a smoothing counter-balancer.  Two pairs of 26mm Mikuni carburetors look to the sides, and expansion chambers leave from the front and rear of the V.  Forks are air-adjusted, have anti-dive and hold dual 267mm brakes and a 16-inch front wheel, while the 18-inch rear is mounted to an alloy monoshock.

The Seattle dealer showing this RZV500 has had a few other classic sportbikes on eBay ( and RSBFS ) along with a boatload of parts.  The RZV has just under 6,000 miles and looks excellent in several high-resolution photos.  Not sure exactly what to expect in the sticker department on a JDM machine, so expert readers will have to weigh in.  Comments from the eBay auction:

The body work is all original and is in very good condition. The paint work is in nice good condition with no major scratches anywhere, and wheels are in great shape with no major rock chips or corrosion. The frame does not have any corrosion and is nice and clean. The original exhaust is in nice condition with the exception of one dent on the right side muffler as can be seen in the pictures. But overall cosmetically this bike is in very nice condition.

The bike runs and rides perfect, and shifts smoothly through all gears. The carburetor was recently ultrasonically cleaned and adjusted, and a full service tune-up was performed which included new spark plugs, chain, brake pads, oil change, new tires, and all fluids flushed. All of the lighting, switches and electrical components work as they should.

With almost 200 hp per liter ( when de-restricted ), the RZV was too fast to live and production ended in 1988.  Several anachronisms flying in formation, it’s a two stroke, kick start, and weighs just over 400 lbs. dry.  Likewise, maybe you are more comfortable in your helmet and knee sliders than business casual, and would like to get in on the bidding.  It’s just eclipsed $13K but hasn’t yet met the reserve.

-donn

1/2 Liter Superbike – 1987 Yamaha RZV500
Yamaha November 27, 2019 posted by

Wild Wolf: 1986 Suzuki RG500 Walter Wolf

If you’re not into oil drilling and late-1970s Formula 1, you might be nonplussed at the handsome red and purple livery that graces this otherwise-standard 1986 Suzuki RG500 Gamma. But, under the alliterative name and the cool-if-dated graphics lies a story of early business success followed by a longshot investment in a passion project that just so happened to pay off.

1986 Suzuki RG500 Walter Wolf for sale on eBay

After making his money selling oil drilling parts, Austrian-via-Canada businessman Walter Wolf  in 1975 bought most of the Williams Racing Team and all of Hesketh Racing and made a go at Formula 1 ownership. Soon after, he rebranded the team with his name, hired Jody Scheckter and won the first race his team entered with the new branding. Not bad. After another couple seasons, Wolf got bored and sold the team, but the cool graphics and handsome livery needed somewhere to land.

Enter, the 1986 Suzuki RG500 Gamma. With Wolf’s colors painted on, Suzuki had a defacto special edition of the already potent twin-crank parallel four two-stroke GP hero. This one is a Japanese market model that landed in South Africa in 2013, where it received a mechanical refresh less than 120 miles ago. Throw some new tires at it, and the 95-horsepower knife’s edge animal will be ready to be a backroads thrill seeker or garage display artifact.

From the eBay listing:

Thanks for taking the time to view my listing on this extremely rare Suzuki RG500 Walter Wolf.
She was imported from Japan in 2013 and formed part of a private collection until recently.
Cosmetically and mechanical the vehicle is an superb condition. She starts on the first kick every time, even from cold with the help of the choke.
The RG has been serviced less than 200 Km ago which included steering neck and wheel bearing replacement as well as complete carburettor refurbishments.
The period correct tyres that’s currently fitted are fine for display purpose however I would recommend that they be replaced if the Gamma is going to be ridden with some proper enthusiasm as Suzuki intended.
Here’s a link to the 360 degree view and engine sound: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wSlSKVJnTEQ&feature=youtu.be

Worldwide shipping cost to:
Europe: $850
U.S.A, Canada :$950
Asia and Australia: $970
Shipping cost includes crating, insurance and handling.
The shipping will be taken care of by a trustworthy reliable agency that specialize in transporting motorcycles across the globe.

Please contact me should you require any additional info.

As you can hear and see, this thing idles like a champ and is in truly immaculate cosmetic condition. At $18,500, this special edition of a rare bike is priced as what it is, but there’s no doubting that some lucky collector will roll home with an absolute gem.

Wild Wolf: 1986 Suzuki RG500 Walter Wolf
Yamaha November 18, 2019 posted by

Buck Rogers: 1982 Yamaha XJ650LJ Seca Turbo

The Turbo years were the wild west for technology mavens in the motorcycling world. For only a few short years did this persist, but while it did the space race was on! Every one of the Big Four came up with at least one turbocharged model, and each had its unique position in the market. Each had its own unique strength. And all had a common weakness. The 1982 Yamaha Seca Turbo was no different. Not the first of the factory turbo bikes – and definitely not the last – the Seca Turbo was the typical middle child. In many ways Yamaha jumped onto the turbo bandwagon with a #MeToo bike, but their interpretation of the breed did produce an interesting motorcycle. As far as factory turbos go, the Yamaha Seca 650 Turbo was a low-tech, low-buck affair. The whole Yamaha approach was a check-box effort, allowing them to play in this important space while presenting the least amount of risk. As such, the Yamaha Turbo is perhaps the least collected of the Big Four factory bikes. But that does not mean it is not worth a look.

1982 Yamaha XJ650LJ Seca Turbo for sale on eBay

While Honda flexed their technological muscles (and deep cash reserves) in the creation of the liquid-cooled, computer-controlled CX500 Turbo, Yamaha warmed over the existing Seca with relatively little fanfare. Air cooling was the order of the day, as was the brace of carburetors. The turbo itself – a teeny-tiny 39mm unit from Mitsubishi – produced a meager 7-ish pounds of boost and was arranged in a “blow through” scheme to avoid the cost and complexity of fuel injection. The heads were new to provide for better airflow, although the bottom end was a modified version of the existing 650. Internals were strengthened, additional oil galleys were added for lubrication and cooling, and forged pistons were utilized. All told, the Seca was rated for approximately 90 horsepower (good for a quarter mile in the mid to high 12s).

From the seller:
Hi I’m selling my 1982 XJ650LJ Seca Turbo. Its in great shape. Replaced left front linker Lens with New OEM. The windshield has a small crack but does not affect function. Rebuilt Turbo, been sitting to long. Low miles.
Complete Service done. Oil Change, Spark Plugs, Carbs Rebuilt ETC ETC.

The real effort on the Seca Turbo was expended on the styling aspect. This bike practically screamed “futuristic missle,” even if the performance didn’t quite back it up. It did look the part, at least in 1982. Today it appears a bit dated, much like a Seca with a funky fairing on it. The underlying chassis was straight from the normally aspirated 650 Seca, although the Turbo did benefit from air assist forks up front, and an air shock in the back. That was relatively high tech for the times. At over 500 pounds dry, nobody would mistake the Seca for a sport bike, but testers in the day indicated that the Yamaha had minimal turbo lag and managed the twisty bits as well as its contemporary peers.

If all this sounds like I’m panning the Seca Turbo, let me set you straight: While the bike did not live up to the performance of the latter factory turbos such as the XN85, the CX650T or the mighty GPz750 Turbo, the Seca is still a good motorcycle and a great example of the experimentation that took place during this phase of motorcycle development. These are unique and fun motorcycles to ride, and certainly something you won’t see very often at your local bike night. The Seca Turbo – like all turbos – are relatively rare due to the fact that they were not big sellers. Time passed them over quickly, and by 1984-85 that party was over. This particular Seca Turbo looks to be in extremely decent condition for a rider, sports relatively low miles, and has been under the care of a turbo fan. The price is downright C.H.E.A.P. for such a unique bike, with a Buy It Now price of only $3,750. Check it out here, and get your boost on. Good Luck!!

MI

Buck Rogers: 1982 Yamaha XJ650LJ Seca Turbo
Yamaha November 8, 2019 posted by

Featured Listing: 1987 Yamaha FZR750RT

Update 11.27.2019: SOLD in less than three weeks! Congratulations to buyer and seller! -dc

Say you’re a Yamaha fan and you want to collect something significant. Where do you start? Well, rare homologation machines are always a great place to look. Think you want an OW-01? You might find that mighty machine to be very, very expensive, and not as rare as you think. If you really want to buy the right bike at the right time, the homologation machine to check out is the 1980s FZR750R variants. Built to go AMA Superbike racing, the FZR750R line was fast and trick, and continues to be an affordable collector option today. Take for example today’s Featured Listing: a 1987 Yamaha FZR750R “T” model.

Featured Listing: 1987 Yamaha FZR750RT

To build the FZR750R, Yamaha invested in new technology. To build the DeltaBox frame, for instance, Yamaha adopted robotic procedures for folding and welding the thin aluminum components. This stiff but light frame housed the all-important, 106 horsepower “Genesis” engine. Sporting a unique valve train consisting of 5 valves per cylinder (3 intake, 2 exhaust), the Genesis engine family also maximized weight bias by canting the cylinder bank forward to place more weight lower and closer to the front tire. Between the high RPM capability offered by the airflow through the head (and straight-shot downdraft carbs) and the handling afforded by the chassis and ideal weight distribution, the FZR750R was a potent competitor on the racetrack.

From the seller:
Original 1987 Yamaha FZR750RT, #2** of 500 Homologation specials for 1987 , this is a Canadian market bike with 26290kms

This bike is a unrestored survivor in excellent overall condition and does not appear to have been raced (no drilled brake caliper bolts, axles etc etc) the exhaust has never been painted from new. There are some scratches to the protruding air intakes on both sides of the fairing as shown, the fairing is not cracked or split in any way in these areas.

This bike is in very original condition, with all the original reflectors, grips, handlebar ends leavers footrests, windshield and trim. The bike has been fully serviced: valve clearances done, carbs serviced and balanced, it has brand new Bridgestone Battleax tires front and rear, everything works as the should.

Comes with the original owners manual in English / French as it is a Canadian.

Asking Price: $5,950 USD

The anecdotal stories suggest that Yamaha dealers were discouraged to offering these homologation machines to buyers intent on utilizing them on the street; after all, Yamaha built these bikes to go racing. And while many FZR750Rs were raced, we have (thankfully) seen a number of these bikes show up on the street. Some have been reconverted from the race bike status. This particular example appears to have been saved the hard life of the race track, and has instead lived its life as a pampered street bike. That is a plus for collectors. That is not to say that this bike has not been used – with 16,000 miles on the all-metric clocks this is not a garage queen, but looks to be in complete and original form.

Yamaha produced but 200 of these particular bikes for the US market, and only 500 world wide. Those are some pretty low numbers by “Limited Edition” standards, and you are looking at the #2 bike in the production series. But before you think “that will cost me an arm and a leg,” the seller is only asking $5,950. That is right in the sweet spot of where these amazing machines are today, and an amazing deal when you consider that this was destined for AMA Superbike competition. The bike is located in Osaka, Japan, and the owner is willing to talk about crating, domestic shipping or (I hear vacation!) local pick up. Check out the picks and then drop Trev a line. Homologation bikes are hot, and the FZR750R has been the underappreciated step child of the genre. These are bound to go up, so we recommend picking up a great example before the market discovers them. Good Luck!!

MI

Featured Listing: 1987 Yamaha FZR750RT