Posts by tag: gray market

Yamaha February 25, 2021 posted by

Out of Towner – 1986 Yamaha RZ350

Since the RZ350 was sold here until 1986, it’s relatively rare to see the fully faired rest-of-world edition.  Though this example isn’t currently operational, it shouldn’t take much to bring it back to the living – not to mention California title !

1986 Yamaha RZ350 for sale on eBay

For 1986, the RZ350 used Yamaha’s 347cc parallel twin with their electrically controlled power valve, and revised porting and combustion chamber helped make 59 hp at 9,000 rpm.  The lightweight rode on 18-inch alloys with air-adjustable forks and monocross rear.  A perimeter chassis and swingarm were executed in steel tubing, with triple disk brakes.  The full fairing was new for 1985, but 1986 saw a revised tail fairing which perhaps looked sportier in its simplicity.

Not seeming to be a dealer, this owner invites inspection at their home.  The RZ shows very well, with 14,403 km’s or a hair under 9,000 miles.  Finishes and plating indicate inside storage.  Nicks and dings keep it from being a real show bike but once it’s back on the road, it would be a smashing rider or riding resto.  Comments from the eBay auction:

The bike is the full fairing Canadian model that was imported here in the US and it comes with a clean CA title and non-op registration.  The motorcycle is in excellent condition and has approximately 14K Kilometers which is equivalent to just under 9K miles. As shown in the photos, the bike is in excellent cosmetic condition with only minor blemishes to the paint as shown in the last photo. 

The bike has been stored and was drained of fluids, so it will need a light service to get running including but not limited to a new battery, fresh fluids, and possibly a carb cleaning.  The motor kicks over with great compression, the throttle turns, clutch and brakes are working, inside of gas tank is clean, electrical is working, etc. so it should not take very much to bring the bike back onto the road. 

For anyone considering this bike as a collectors item or investment, the bike is a numbers matching (Vin to Engine) vintage motorcycle in mostly all original factory condition, this bike has not been restored but rather it has been on display and preserved for most of its life.

Can’t pretend to understand the RD / RZ / LC confusion, but the actual bike has made more incremental changes over the years and across continental divides.  Meanwhile the two stroke Yamaha fun factor is un-parallelled.  Bidding seems serious in this auction, with more than three days yet to run.  The new owner will have a distinctive RZ350, and will get a chance to know it better during the re-commissioning.

-donn

Out of Towner – 1986 Yamaha RZ350
Honda January 20, 2021 posted by

Fun Factor – 1990 Honda NSR250R

Short days turn thoughts to a light winter project that might actually be completed by riding season.  Re-commissioning a later NSR250R would have a substantial reward at the end of that rainbow.

1990 Honda NSR250R for sale on eBay

Honda packed a multitude of updates into the 1990 MC21, though the little V-twin was stuck with 45 hp, the PGM-III ignition also controlled the RC power valve.  The 1990 chassis was a much beefier extrusion, and the gull-arm’s asymmetry allowed an expansion chamber to scoot underneath.  A kick starter was still how you got going, but the new wheels were both 17’s.  The fairing had just a few additional vents and scoops,  while keeping the weight with half a tank just a hair over 300 lbs.  Factory expansion chambers mean you’d never spot one here without a kmh speedometer.

This Colorado example has been stored for a while, and amassed 28,111 kms or 17,467 miles.  Maybe a knowledgeable reader can chime in on the livery and RR-ness, since most of my references show the Repsol scheme to use a teal backround applied to later model SP’s.  Either way the paint does look sharp except for where the tank got bonked, and maybe the rear wheel was victim of a failed brake caliper.  The Washington tag leads me to believe this bike was on RSBFS back in 2013, in a sales compendium viewable – here –.   And just a note from the eBay auction:

1990 Honda NSR250RR with Repsol livery.

Winterized 5 years ago, has been sitting covered in a shop since.

The NSR250R made it easy for rest-of-world riders to have a ball without a second mortgage, and the PGM-III top speed regulator was easily defeated.  This one looks like a great project, new expendables plus a couple of things sent to the paint shop and the new owner will be ready for spring.  Bidding is active but there are a couple of days left to check it over and get in there !

-donn

 

Fun Factor – 1990 Honda NSR250R
Featured Listing November 4, 2020 posted by

Featured Listing – 1983 Honda CB1100R

Update 11.4.2020: Price lowered to $27,000. Good luck to buyers and seller! -dc

Honda went endurance racing in the early 1980’s, to learn things there was really no other way to know, with long stretches of Wide Open Throttle for unlimited class machines.  RSBFS reader Par brought this homologation special home from Europe and has had it tuned to match the very nice cosmetics.

1983 Honda CB1100R for sale in Phoenix

Though it has passing similarities to the CB1100F and 900F, the CB1100R is engineered for long weekends at the track.  With 10:1 compression and upgraded cams, the 1100R would like premium or race gas to get to its rated 120hp.  The engine is rigidly mounted as a stressed part of the chassis, which helps handling but transmits more vibration to the rider.  The twin rear shocks and right-side-up forks denote the decade, both multi-adjustable.  Four piston calipers are fed by braided lines but the disks are more exotic, 296mm of cast stainless with internal venting.  Gold anodized Comstar wheels were wide for the day, at 2.5 and 3.0 inches.  Hand-laid carbon fiber was used for the fairings, and there is a theoretical pillion ( required for homologation ) under the tail fairing.

Par is a longtime fan of the CB1100R, and knows their strengths and foibles.  Surprisingly stock, right down to the black-finished muffler.  Along with its rarity and very good condition, the bombproof build and recent maintenance can give the new owner confidence in the ride.

Par’s comments on the CB1100R:

Very rare 1983 CB1100R for sale.  To my knowledge it’s the only one in the states.

I used to have one of these bikes that I bought new in 1983 and rode for several years and from that point on it has always been my favorite bike. I was over working in Europe last year and found this bike for sale and could not resist buying it. I was not disappointed, it still rides like a dream. The bike is not mint but in very good shape for a bike that is almost 40 years old. After I brought it back I had mechanics go through the bike very thoroughly and all I ended up having to do was having the valves adjusted properly, rebuilt/cleaned the carburetors and rebuilt the rear brake. It now runs and rides as new and is 100% stock. And has 92,400 kilometers on it.

Registered in Arizona.


Extremely Rare Classic Collectable.  Only 1500 full-powered CB1100R D series were built and none were imported into the U.S. The B and C series were only 100 hp.

The RD is painted in pearlescent red, white and blue. The engine covers are painted in gloss black, the gold covers received a much deeper color than the earlier models. The engine shares many parts with the CB1100F bike. The rear swing arm is made of rectangular steel painted silver.

“The ‘R’ bikes were produced in limited quantities from 1981 to 1983 to compete in factory endurance racing in Europe. They have been touted as “the ultimate peak of development for the DOHC, air-cooled, twin shock, across-the-frame four.” and dominated their racing class in 81, 82 & 83. To this day, they are considered comparable to many “modern” sport bikes. Only a few lucky people in the United States will be privileged to own a CB1100R-D as they were never officially made available for the U.S. market.”

Honda was very successful with these bikes in the famous Isle of Man TT races and they were piloted by legendary riders such as Wayne Gardner, “Rocket” Ron Haslam and Joey Dunlop.

Par asks $27,000 for his CB1000R and welcomes offers by email – here –.

Honda did well with the CB1100R, especially in Australian and New Zealand 6-hour events, the Bol D’Or and the Isle of Man.  The clock keeps ticking however, and Honda adopted their V-4 for 1984 and brought the VF1000R.  But even the homologation special wasn’t the “endurance racer for the road” that the CB1100R was, and 1981-83 models are a distinct moment in Honda history.  Par’s sorted example looks ready to bring that experience to the next owner.

-donn

Featured Listing – 1983 Honda CB1100R
Yamaha May 1, 2020 posted by

Formation Flight – 1985 Yamaha RZ500 with 4,600 miles !

With a pair of 250cc engines driving a common output shaft providing two power strokes on every revolution, Yamaha’s RZ500 pushed nearly 200 hp per liter, even in street trim.  This sharp Michigan example has been in storage but was recently freshened up for riding season.

1985 Yamaha RZ500 for sale on eBay

The RZ’s engine is almost a cube, with four 26mm Mikuni carburetors looking out to the side-mounted airboxes from the valley of the 50-degree V.  Individual expansion chambers wend their way back, with the upper cylinders’ pipes tucked into the seat fairing.  88 hp was available at a wailing 9,500 rpm, with the torque band was stretched by the YPVS power valve system.  The chassis was steel tubing and the forks were right-side-up, though the monoshock was underneath the engine to make room for the exhausts.

With just over 4,600 miles, this RZ had to be in storage before the present owner.  Just some stress cracking on the chin scoop is apparent, with none of the usual garage rash and corrosion.  The seller waited seven years to re-commission it for the road, and has the following comments in the eBay auction:

New Battery
New Tires
New Chain
New Wheel Bearings
New Tapered steering head bearings
Changed transmission Oil
Cleaned float bowls on carbs
New Shut off valve for fuel
New front Brake Pads
Amsoil Dominator Synthetic injector oil
New fork seals, Race tech Springs, Gold valves, Modified damper rods (per Race Tech) 20 wt oil
With modifying damper rods the Anti Dive units are inactive (left them for stock appearance)
 
This is a very nice mostly all Original RZ, Starts first kick most every time hot or cold, shifts and clutches fine, pulls all the way to redline.
 
All lights work, horn, blinkers, brake light, gauge lights

The RZ500 waited more than 10 years to hit the streets after the YZR500 race machine’s 1973 introduction, but by then the U.S. and a good part of Europe had declared two-strokes unwelcome.  So every RZ500 seen will be a gray market import with limited history, and a KMH speedo with MPH sub-titles.  This one’s about as nice as they come without claims of a collection or museum, and the auction’s at $11K with five days to run.  With recent sales in the low $20’s, a lot of us will just be watching, at least to see where the reserve is set.

-donn

Formation Flight – 1985 Yamaha RZ500 with 4,600 miles !
Honda December 29, 2019 posted by

What Could Be – 1986 Honda NS400R

With most riders expecting the best part of 200 hp per liter, later two-strokes of middling displacement are often treated like caged animals. This Honda V-3 doesn’t appear to have been babied, but does boast current California registration.

1986 Honda NS400R for sale on eBay

Honda acknowledged that the 500cc GP formula was not going to be won with the four stroke NR500, and returned to the podium with the NS500.  Wishing to capitalize on their success within Japanese regulations, they presented a 387cc race lookalike, which was brought stateside in a plain gray wrapper.  The surprisingly symmetrical triple had two forward cylinders and the third more vertical.  The bank of three 26mm Keihin carburetors are plumbed directly in from the top, with the outside exhausts riding underneath and the center taking a scenic underseat route to the license plate.  Even with Honda’s ATAC power valve, acceleration below 7,000 rpm is gradual, then a controlled explosion to the 9,500 rpm peak of 72 hp.

Thirty-plus years on, almost every bike will have some unknowable history.  This example has evidently received more attention on the mechanical side than to the out-front details that grab eyeballs.  Seems like doing about 10% of the required beautification would make a 90% improvement.  From the eBay auction:

Just serviced and ready to ride.  Has some cosmetic issues as can be seen in the pictures, but the previous owner installed a brand new engine which has less than 1,000 km or less than 600 miles on it, even though the odometer reads 26,296 km which is about 16,400 miles.  Odometer may change slightly as it is ridden occasionally to keep it in great running condition.  Starts easily and runs great, but needs new kill switch assembly.
Previous owner had installed a new engine, and we rode this bike a few times over the years, but with 60 bikes in the collection it did not get ridden very often. I had it completely serviced in August 2019 and new CDI units were installed (this bike uses two).  Just had the carbs cleaned last week so it is running fine.  The bike has a CA title and registration and I have it in hand.

The livery on this NS400R is similar to Honda’s GP works livery in the early 1980’s, when Freddie Spencer was quickly drafted from Honda’s AMA Superbike effort.  Spencer hit pay dirt in 1985, winning at Daytona as well as the 500cc and 250cc GP championships.  This NS400R has a lot of question marks – high mileage, engine change, and pictures that serve only to start a conversation.  But if some of those could be resolved, it might justify the owner’s reference to a high-dollar Mecum auction winner.

-donn

What Could Be – 1986 Honda NS400R
Honda October 13, 2019 posted by

Wild East – 1988 Honda CBR250R

During the 80’s heyday, Honda showed a graduated selection of displacements with two- or four-stroke engines in various configurations.  The early CBR250R was destined for an upscale beginner and came to the U.S. only via the grey market.  This 1988 four cylinder 250 looks good and its black/gold livery doesn’t stretch the truth with racey graphics.

1988 Honda CBR250R for sale on eBay

When introduced in 1986, the CBR250R was at the high end of sporty convention with alloy spar chassis, Pro-Link monoshock and big front disk brake.  The 1/4-liter inline was nicely oversquare, almost a requirement when pushing the 2-inch pistons to 18,000 rpm.  With gear-driven cams and 4-into-1 exhaust, no trouble putting together the legislated limit of 45 hp.  For 1988 there were twin headlights on the full fairing, and pillion accommodation for a JDM teen from thirty years back.

This NYC owner has several classic sportbikes at auction, none with hi-res photos however.  Showing just over 4,000 miles with no particular damage or corrosion.  Though it’s shown without plates, the owner states clear title and good running condition, and in the eBay auction can’t argue with pretty clean:

PRETTY CLEAN 1988 HONDA CBR 250  MC19 WITH ONLY 4,123 ORIGINAL MILES (6,636 KM).  THIS BIKE RUNS AND DRIVES GOOD.  EVERYTHING WORKS LIKE THEY SHOULD.  IN MY OPINION THE BIKE IS IN EXCELLENT CONDITION FOR A BIKE OF THIS AGE.  HOWEVER, THERE ARE IMPERFECTIONS DUE TO AGE.  GOT A BUY IT NOW PRICE OF $8,500 OR WILL CONSIDER THE NEAREST BEST OFFER.  GOT A CLEAN AND CLEAR TITLE IN HAND.

Different than fire-breathing superbikes or more powerful smokers, this early CBR still has rarity on its side plus the gem-like engine.  The dual headlight look is classic and this one might be a nice rolling resto as cosmetics are tuned up.  Not much to compare it to, but the buy-it-now might be a little rich for 249 cc’s – however the Make Offer button is lit.

-donn

Wild East – 1988 Honda CBR250R
Honda November 17, 2018 posted by

Grey and Gold – 1988 Honda CBR400RR

For a few years in the late 1980’s – early 90’s, Honda had double coverage in the 400cc segment with two 4-cylinder 4-strokes, the V-4 VFR and the straight four CBR400RR.  Marketed somewhat differently, the CBR400RR really only made it to the western hemisphere as a grey import, where it has recently shined.  This one comes out of a collection and despite some miles, has been nicely prepared for a future life.

1988 Honda CBR400RR for sale on eBay

Around mid-life for the 400cc model, the NC23 built on past successes and styling from its larger cc brothers.  The nicely oversquare 399cc four has gear driven cams, and a pre-ordained 59 hp are available.  Air-adjustable forks and dual 4-piston disk brakes are up front, with Honda’s beefy Tri-Arm monoshock out back.  Tire sizes are staggered 17 and 18 inches, and exhaust goes 4-into-1.

This owner has brought several bikes forward recently, and has taken some flack for his optimistic assessments.  This CBR though, looks better than advertised with fresh cosmetics, and the long list of mechanical freshenings take some of the concern out of the mileage.  An in depth walk-around is available – here –.  From the eBay auction:

1-Entire new Stainless Steel Exhaust System back to the OEM Can with all new donuts & mounting hardware.

2-Installed new fuel petcock

3-Rebuilt BOTH Front Calipers and the Rear Caliper – Repainted Honda Gold

4-Installed new brake pads front & rear

5-Installed New Gold Chain and new sprockets

6-Rebuilt all 4 carbs using only Honda OEM parts

7-Carbs all Digitally Sync to perfection

8-Installed New Tapered Head Bearings both upper and Lower

9-Installed New OEM Air Filter

10-New Spark plugs

11-Valves adjusted (Shim under bucket) – see pics of valve train and condition of the cam shaft lobes.

The cam lobes show almost ZERO wear!!! Installed new OEM valve cover gasket

12-Installed New rubber cushions in the drive hub

13-Installed new radiator – water pump – thermostat – radiator cap and coolant hoses

14-Installed NEW Rear Shock – big upgrade over the stock one

15-Rebuilt Front forks – new seal – dust caps and used 15w fork oil

With its slightly higher CG and different frame geometry, the CBR didn’t get the handling raves that the VFR did, but it’s a couple of gallons lighter and lives for the twisty bits.  Owner-readers will be able to spot discrepancies, but no one can quibble about the sound of the cam train.  The owner has elected a no-reserve auction, which seems undervalued with two days to run.  Plan ahead for spring !

-donn

 

Honda March 6, 2018 posted by

Featured Listing – 1990 Honda VFR400R / NC30 – Super Clean !

Update 4.16.2018: This bike is SOLD! Congratulations to buyer and seller! -dc

Long-time friend and regular around RSBFS, Greg at Deftone Cycles had some kind of luck with his last shipment of gray-market machines. This 1990 VFR400R has just about 14,000 km ( 8,500 miles ) but the condition is exceptional.  The third generation was certainly the charm for the petite Honda, as the NC30 variant had the widest torque band, least twitchy handling, and outstanding build quality.

1990 Honda VFR400 for sale on eBay

The NC30 was built for 4 years, an eternity in the fast-moving sportbike world.  Honda’s well-tested 399cc V-4 generates the nice whir of gear-driven cams, as well as 59 hp.  The NC30 re-introduced the 360-degree crankshaft, where pairs of cylinders fire together for a torquier delivery.  The chassis was revised for the 1990 model year and reviewed as the strongest and most stable of the 400-four stroke group.  House suspension is adjustable for preload and rebound, and triple discs are appropriately sized at 269mm.  Styled like its 750cc sibling, the VFR400 shows off the single-sided swingarm with a 4-2-1 left side exhaust.

Requiring very little refurbishment, this monochromatic VFR is stock except for the exhaust and without most of the usual corrosion.  Greg has this to say about the bike :

100 percent stock. Except aftermarket Header and Silencer.
Condition: Excellent.
Right side lower fairing stress cracks.
Small hairline fracture upper left.
Mileage: 8,647 / 13,917 Km

Though shoot-outs from the day accused Honda of resting on their laurels, the easier-to-ride VFR400 may have been the best solution for its intended fledgling riders, if not aspiring racers.  The drivetrain is more tractable than the usual pint-size, and the package is surprisingly capable for a junior – skilled riders will find their rewards.  Deftone Cycles asks $7,500 for the pleasure and Greg can be reached – here –

-donn

Featured Listing – 1990 Honda VFR400R / NC30 – Super Clean !