Posts by tag: Kenny Roberts

Sport Bikes For Sale September 13, 2011 posted by

Vintage Racer! 1978 YAMAHA TZ250-E PRODUCTION RACER

For Sale: 1978 YAMAHA TZ250-E PRODUCTION ROAD RACER

Up for grabs today is a historic Yamaha TZ250 race bike. These TZs cleaned up the class for many years in AMA racing, and this 1978 bike is what is known as an “E” model. First introduced in 1973, the TZ250 was the mainstay of privateer racers everywhere. With the right credentials and finances, anyone could order up a factory race bike – and many did. Each season Yamaha incrementally modified the bike, building upon past success. With each evolution the bike became faster, making more horsepower and handling better. It was a continual recipe for winning.

While the TZ250 changed in varying amounts each year, Yamaha kept several items stable throughout most of the model’s long life. For example, the same 54mm bore x 54mm stroke was retained from the inception of the bike until the 1980s, when gradually the bore was widened at the expense of stroke. Rated at 53 horsepower at 10,500 RPM, the TZ250 was the mainstay of many a racing career. Legendary tuner Kel Carruthers prepped an E model for none other than King Kenny Roberts; together they won many races in the 1978 season.

From the seller:
1978 YAMAHA PRODUCTION ROAD RACER

VERY NICE, ORIGINAL CONDITION; ENGINE TURNS OVER AND HAS SPARK, THOUGH IT’S NOT BEEN RUN SINCE I BOUGHT IT OVER 10 YEARS AGO, IN “AS RACED” CONDITION…

THE FAIRINING, BODY PANELS, AND TAIL SECTION ARE IN “AS PURCHASED” CONDITON, AND ARE IN GOOD CONDITION…

THE CARBURETORS ARE LECTRONS (NOT ORIGINAL)…APPARENTLY, KEL CARRUTHERS USED 38MM LECTRON CARBURETTORS, ALONG WITH OTHER MODS, TO PRODUCE MORE TORQUE ON THE “E” MODEL…

ALL OTHER PARTS ARE IN VERY GOOD CONDITION, AND APPEAR ORIGINAL, THOUGH THE ENGINE CASE DOES NOT HAVE A VIN STAMPED, THUS WAS SURELY CHANGED AT SOME TIME…

I’M SURE THAT THE BRAKES WILL REQUIRE CLEANING OR REBUILDING DUE TO THE AMOUNT OF TIME THEY HAVE NOT BEEN IN USE…

THE TIRES ARE THOSE THAT CAME ON THE MACHINE, SO ARE OK FOR A MODEST TEST RIDE, BUT NOT SERIOUS USE…

IF THE BUYER PLANS TO RACE IT, I’M SURE THAT A GENERAL “GOING OVER” WOULD BE REASONABLE, AND ANTICIPATED WEAR AND “SITTING” PARTS LIKE BEARINGS AND SEALS APPEAR READILY AVAILABLE VIA AFTERMARKET AND NOS PARTS SUPPLIERS, IF THEY ARE NEEDED…

THE DRY CLUTCH PROTECTIVE COVER HAS A SMALL SECTION BROKEN OFF THE UPPER-RIGHT (ABOUT 2 O’CLOCK) AREA…

THE BIKE WAS STORED INSIDE, IN A CLIMATE CONTROLLED ENVIRONMENT UNTIL I MOVED JUST RECENTLY…

THIS IS A VERY NICE CLASSIC RACER OR COLLECTOR MACHINE THAT I HAD IN MY “SHOWROOM,” BUT WOULD BE EQUALLY AT HOME AS A CLASSIC RACER…AND MUCH MORE FUN, OR AT LEAST UNIQUE, AS A PRODUCTION RACER RATHER THAN A MACHINE BUILT FROM VARIOUS OTHER PARTS…

Old race bikes can be a mixed blessing. On one hand, they harbor a mysterious quality of unknown races and riders. On the other hand, they rarely remain in “stock” condition for long – the whole goal of racing is to win, and winning requires more than the next guy (more HP, more speed, more talent). The seller does not note any history with this bike – although it is listed as in “as raced” condition – so that might be something to ask. Also, the bike seems to sport bodywork from a later model. The tail section resembles a “G” model more than an “E,” so it is possible someone updated this bike through the years it was run in anger.

In all, this is a wonderful piece of racing history from one of the most iconic series on two wheels. The fact that the 2 strokes are all gone now might just help raise the value of this and other classic racers. With an auction that opened at just $1,500 and is at the time of writing only slightly above the $2k mark, this is a bike that will soon find a new home. For a great restoration project, a coveted track day bike or simply a piece of history, click the link and jump over to the auction. Good Luck!

MI

Yamaha September 8, 2011 posted by

Legal Smoke: 1985 Yamaha RZ350 Kenny Roberts Edition

For Sale: 1985 Yamaha RZ350 Kenny Roberts Edition

Is it just me, or has this year just flown by? It is September already. The kids are back in school and in many parts of the US the riding season is wrapping up. Pity those Californians, however. Their riding season still has months left to go. Too bad they can’t register really cool bikes like gray-market import smokers. Fortunately for the Golden State, this good looking RZ is ready to go with CA title!

This 1985 RZ350 sports some nice add ons that really help make the bike. The factory RZ came only with the bikini fairing (yellow bikes had King Kenny’s signature in ’84, but both the yellow and the white/red bikes had it in ’85). This bike has aftermarket lowers – nicely color matched – which help clean up the silhouette. The fork brace, also evident in this shot, is another necessary addition for when the road turns twisty.

With only 13,500 miles on the bike, this bike is right in line with other RZs we have seen. The Toomey piles are the real deal, and the K&N filter (and requisite jetting changes) really work together to wake up the performance of this little buzz bomb. The rear sets might be more extreme than some prefer, but the stock RZ has the rider sitting a bit upright – comfortable, but hardly in line with the intent. If you scrape a peg on this bike, it might be because you are sliding down the road! The clubman bars, evident in this photo, also appear to be an aftermarket item.

For Sale:
1985 YAMAHA RZ350N Kenny Roberts Edition. Excellent Condition. Always Garaged. Original Paint Still Shines Like New. Full Fairing, Raask Rear Sets, Toomey Pipes, Front Fork Brace, K&N Air Filter. Carburetors Recently Professional Cleaned and Tuned. Runs Flawlessly. Only 13,452 Original Miles(may have a few more by the time the auction ends).

The Only Flaws On This Bike that I Know of are as Follows…

Standard Road Debris Paint Wear on Bottom of Frame.

Tiny Touched Up Ding in Fuel Tank from Old Stock Mirror.

Oil Tank Mounting Tab on Frame and Plastic Tank Broke Off Clean Many Years Ago(oil tank sits in place by the hoses anyways so I never bothered to have it welded). You Can Set the Tab Back in Place on the Frame and Barely See the Crack so that is Why I Say it was a Clean Break. Another Oil Tank is Included with the Bike in Case the Buyer Wants to Fix this.

Small Touched Up Area on Top of the Rear Fender.

Minor Spider Cracks Around Some of the Screws on Fairing.

Exterior Rubber Fork Seal Covers Have Some Cracking from Age.

The Bike is Very Clean and You Have to Look Real Close to See any of the Above. The Spot on the Seat in the Main Photo is A Spec of Dust on the Camera Lens and Not a Flaw on the Seat. There are no Rips, Tears, or Flaws on the Seat.

This Bike is Street Legal in all States Including CA. It is the Last Street Legal US Two-Stroke Manufactured.

Don’t Miss this Rare Opportunity to Own a Clean, Low Mileage, Red/White Kenny Roberts RZ that is Sure to Increase in Value Over Time.

I like a seller who is not afraid to show his cards. In this case, the flaws are openly noted. I would prefer a few more photographs (preferably taken in better light), but you can’t fault the seller for sharing what he knows.

There are also a few items not mentioned here that are worth looking at. The turn signals were not originally flush-mounted – stockers sat on posts front and rear – so these have been modified. The seller also mentions a dent on the tank caused by the stock mirrors, but the stock mirrors were not bar-end mounted like the current set. That leads me to believe that when the bar-end mirrors were mounted somebody did not account for clearance between the mirror or mount and the tank. Minor, but a detail nonetheless.

Pricing on this RZ is right in the ballpark: The opening ask is $3,750 (a very reasonable starting point), and the BIN is set at $5,750. The BIN number might be a touch high for the market, but for someone who wants a titled smoker in great shape it is not an absurd price.

For your chance to check out this CA legal two stroke, click on the link and jump over to the auction. These RZs continue to be very sought-after motorcycles, and values may well rise in the coming years. Don’t forget to tell ’em you found it on RSBFS!

MI

Sport Bikes For Sale August 5, 2011 posted by

Smoker Alert! 1985 Yamaha RZ500

For Sale: 1985 Yamaha RZ500

Proving that RSBFS is worthy of International status comes this beautiful RZ500 from the wilds of British Columbia, Canada. Never imported into the United States but teasing us from the Northern borders, the RZ500 was a 500cc, V4 two-stroke hot rod in the footsteps of GP machinery ridden by the likes of Kenny Roberts and Eddie Lawson.

There are actually two models of the RZ500: this model, with steel frame and approximately 85 hp (stock), and the RZV500R which is a Japanese market only bike, containing an aluminum frame (20 lbs weight savings) but limited to just 65 HP in stock trim.

For a standard RZ500, this bike looks to be in great condition. The seller indicates an odometer reading of 34,371 km, which works out to be approximately 21,357 miles. There are also some tasty added-on bits which should definitely help wake up the performance of this beast.

From the seller:
1985 Yamaha Rz500 two-stroke motorcycle, great shape. 92 FZR 1000 front end, with Marvic 3.5×17 front wheel, J-lomas ss pipes with carbon fiber ends new tiers, and just over 1000 k on new motor. also have under seat oil tank (not installed) and extra used plastics (enough for new set) which can also be part of deal…? over $13,000.00 invested. this is a great bike, eye catcher, and runs fantastic, and sounds great!!!!!. This bike is a steal for anyone interested, and you’ll love it.

I must admit my ignorance on this one: While the livery looks to be stock Yamaha in layout, I am not familiar with this color scheme. Every RZ500 I have come across has displayed the traditional white/red/black Yamaha colors. Did these models also come in white/black, or is this a repaint? Perhaps an expert on the RZ500 models can provide some feedback in the comments section. Regardless, the bike does look sharp

Color aside, there is not a tremendous amount of detail here. The front end conversion is popular with these models, as the RZ500 was equipped with a 16″ front wheel; sporting rubber is difficult to find in that size today. A front end swap also provides access to bigger brakes and more modern suspension.

This auction is going on now, and currently sits at the $7,000 mark with reserve still in place. The BIN is set at $9k. For more information or to contact the seller, click the link and jump over to the auction. There is a great smoker available just over the border!

MI

Sport Bikes For Sale August 2, 2011 posted by

Classic 2 stroke – RZ 350 Kenny Roberts Edition

When I was growing up the RD250LC and RD350LC were the bikes to have.  Of course in the US you called them RZ’s.  These bikes were water cooled 2 strokes that rarely remained standard and could be heard screaming about the roads in the UK.  This example we didn’t get as it was in celebration of Kenny Roberts, we were way more concerned about a Barry Sheene Suzuki!  When Yamaha introduced the YVPS powervalve system the bikes had a broader spread of power but were still ultimately 2 strokes that you ran in the power band trailing a faint blue smoke while waking the neighbours.

The seller doesn’t say too much:

1985 Yamaha RZ350 Kenny Roberts Edition
400 miles on NEW TOP END.
New Clutch, new Roller Chain, Tach is new factory, K-N air cleaner is new, Spec Chambers,new hand-stitched seat. Bridgestone Battlax tires. Has original manual and toolkit.
Mechanically New, Few cracks on plastic.
RUNS GREAT! Have owned for 12 years.
If you use the Buy Now option I will include stock pipes worth $300 each.No Free test rides.
Serious interest only.

The auction can be found here on eBay.

If you have always wanted a 2 stroke but the likes of a race 250 is too much then not sure you can go wrong with one of these which you can pick up for only a few grand.

Just in case you wanted to hear a little beauty like this:

AS

Sport Bikes For Sale June 7, 2011 posted by

Go big or go home: 1985 Yamaha RZ500

For Sale: 1985 Yamaha RZ500

OK two stroke fans, I have two words for you: California Title. Excited yet? Called out to us by sharp-eyed reader Ian, these bikes usually belong over on sister site CSBFS – but seeing how we need some great hardware to fight the influx of Ducatis posted here recently, I’m quite happy to show it off on RSBFS. Besides, The big RZ has lots of company on this site, as it continues to be a very popular model coveted and searched out by readers (check out some of the previous RZ500 listings by clicking on this RSBFS search link).

This has got to be one of the best pics in all of motorcycling: With the color-matched solo seat cover over the upper two of the four exhaust pipes and just a hint of license plate cleavage poking out from below, this just says “ready for business!”

From the seller:
You are bidding on a beautiful 1985 Yamaha RZ500 with only 27500 Km’s (17087 Miles), it is not show/display quality but as you can see from the pictures it is a stunning daily rider, it is in standard configuration (not tuned) and has the original exhaust pipes, auto lube and air box, the bike has been fitted with longer lower suspension arms to raise the back of the bike up by 1” to give it a more modern look, (the original arms will be included).

When I bought the bike the tank and fairings had been re-painted in original Yamaha white but had no graphics, so I decided to replace all of the graphics with high quality hand cut vinyl and as you can see it looks amazing.

No expense has been spared on the up keep and maintenance of this RZ500 and it starts and runs like new, it has never had any issues with water, fuel or oil leaks and the gear box does not use a single drop of oil.

The RZ has new Bridgestone BT45 tires, zero gravity windscreen and Gorilla alarm and as you can see from the pictures many of the parts have been powder coated, the wheels are flat black and all of the other parts have been powder coated satin black

With 17,087 miles showing on the odometer (that’s 27,500 kilometers for the metric set), this bike is in rare condition indeed. The apparently unmolested engine, intake and exhaust speak to a well-cared for machine that was not abused mercilessly. The repaint is striking – although questions on the reasons behind the repaint are probably in order. As always, we recommend asking lots of questions and requesting lots of pictures and information before committing hard cash on a bike unseen.

Thankfully, the seller has been quite forthright in what is not perfect on the bike:

From the seller:
Small piece of plastic missing from behind the front right turn signal
Fairing cut around the right side engine cover
Could use some paint touch-up on the engine (if you’re a perfectionist)
Crack on under side of belly pan (can only be seen from underneath belly pan)

All in all, this is not a bad list considering we are talking about a rare, gray-market import bike that is 26+ years old! And perhaps you missed another key aspect – this bike has a coveted CA title and plates (which may not mean much to the inhabitants of the other 49 states – or our foreign and overseas RSBFS readers – but is a BIG DEAL where bikes like these are coveted yet not able to be titled by mere mortals).

So how much for a rare beauty like this one? The current bid at auction is only $6,800, with reserve still in place. Bidding has been spirited, and the bike is showing a lot of interest. These are $9k+ bikes when found titled and rideable condition, so there is still plenty of opportunity to get in on the action. To check out all of the pictures, read more from the seller and possibly even bid on this great machine, . Good luck to the bidders, and thanks again Ian for pointing this one out!

MI

Sport Bikes For Sale June 3, 2011 posted by

All Hail the King: 1985 Yamaha RZ 350 Up for Auction

Location: Camarillo, CA
Mileage: 5,220
Price: $4,000 BIN

As I’m sure most of you do, when I think RZ 350, I think Kenny Roberts. The Yamaha RZ 350 Kenny Roberts Signature is a legendary bike associated with a legendary racer. Indulge me for a second while I drop a little history.   ‘King Kenny’ was a dominate racer in the 70’s and went on to win three Grand Prix titles (’78, ’79, ’80) on 500 cc two-strokes. He was the first American rider to win in Grand Prix road racing and in 2000 he was named a Grand Prix legend by the FIM. Kenny Roberts name is motorcycle racing and for me this bike represents an important part of that history. And although I have never ridden one, with roughly 52 ponies of two-stroke power and weighing in at 370lbs, I suspect it’s a blast.

This bike appears to be clean, with reasonable mileage and some solid modifications and maintenance. From the seller:

This is a clean 1985 RZ 350 with the Kenny Roberts red and white graphics scheme. All the paint is original to the bike as well as the graphics. There is a small dent in the tank on the right side where your leg would go, it was hit with something as someone was walking by. Has brand new braided brake line, brake pads, ceramic coated pipe, new speedo cable, and more. The front forks were rebuilt with Race Tech internals, new chain, sprockets, professionally jetted, the list keeps going. I have an invoice of all the new parts and when they were installed. Never ridden since installed. Starts up and runs great but would like to be used instead of sitting. This is a two stroke if you are not familiar with the model. One of the original sport bikes. Selling as the owner and title holder and had only two other owners. One owner had it for over 20 years. One you should come take a look at.

More photos:

Current bid is $1000 as of this writing with the BIN at $4000. The BIN price seems to be right in there for one of these bikes. If the sound of angry bees in a can is for you and you want to try to snag this piece of motorcycle history, !

RN

Sport Bikes For Sale May 25, 2011 posted by

1994 Yamaha TZ250 Kenny Roberts Racing

1994 Yamaha TZ250 King Kenny Roberts stable

Location: Santa Ana, California
Mileage: It’s a racer 🙂
Price: $10,000 will do it

Que the AC/DC and crank up Back in Black because RSBFS.com is back baby! We’re as amp’d about it as anyone and the IT guy better be apologizing to everyone- and quick! I personally think we should give him a good old southern ass kik’n for holding us down so long. Who wants to help?

Have your Angus cranked up yet? Mines on 11, but I can still hear and smell the cotton candy fumes of hi-octane and synthetic 2T burning from a full on GP bike. Yep, that’s right my friends- the closet 99% of us will ever get to being a true GP racer boy is to buy an ex GP racer and now is your chance!

SCHWING! Pretty spiffy eh? Read on for the 411

1994 Yamaha TZ250 located in California. This bike belongs to Kenny Roberts and was raced by Jimmy Filice in the 1996 European 250cc Championships. Bike has Ohlins Forks and Brembo Brakes. The cylinders and pipes are Bud Aksland. This bike is in very good condition and fast. Sold with no spares, comes with what you see in the pictures.

Hmmm, comes with what you see in the pictures eh? Maybe KR will throw in a track lesson for the lucky buyer 🙂

I poked around on some of the two stroke forums and the main question seems to be “wonder what’s in the motor?” I’m curious as well and would like to see the Dyno sheet for this machine.

Track day machine? Office art? Conversation piece? What would you do with a gem like this? Hit me back and tell us what you’d do with a full on GP machine.

Cheers!

dd

Sport Bikes For Sale March 17, 2011 posted by

Another of Kenny’s rides: 1985 Yamaha RZ350

For Sale: 1985 Yamaha RZ350 in MINT condition!

It’s hard for me to pass up an RZ350; classic lines, last of the factory two strokes, King Kenny’s signature… Lately, though, we have seen a lot of high-mileage, ratted out examples pass through eBay. Seems that more and more folks are cashing in on the rising values of these collectible buzz bombs from the 1980’s.

This bike is different. Stone stock (including the hard to come by exhaust system which contains catalytic converters) with low miles, this is about as clean as one can hope to get in a used bike. If only more used bikes for sale looked like this one…

From the seller:

Offered here is my Kenny Roberts commemorative Yamaha RZ350 sports bike. I purchased this classic years ago and could not pass it up since it is such a rare find for a one owner, completely unmolested original bike with under 3,000 miles. The original owner only drove it for a few years and then stored it. He said it has never been down and that he changed the transmission oil every 1000 miles. The bike is totally stock and has not been performance modified in any way… still has the original Dunlop tires, brake pads, exhaust, etc. The only part I replaced was the original air filter which fell apart in my hand – a new foam 2 stage UNI filter was installed. This bike still has all of the original decals and stampings to my knowledge and the carb idle jets are still factory capped! The little details still are in tact… like part number tags, warning / cleaning decals, rubber brake bleeder caps, no lead fuel, catalyst, etc. This bike has a rubber seal that fits over the headlight behind the fairing which I have never seen from my exposure to these bikes.

Other than the tiny Snap-On sticker on the tank, this bike looks amazingly factory. It still has the typical mediocre toolkit, all of the EPA labels and reflectors, and stock tires (you may want to consider swapping those out before riding in anger). So what price for a showroom-fresh RZ350? Typically we see these bikes go for $3,500 on the low end, and above $7,500 on the upper end – but few are in this exemplary condition. This particular auction is popular: the current bid is up to $9,100 and in a few days somebody is going to ride off in a haze of wonderful blue smoke. The price may seem high, but it is the bidding – not some artificial BIN number – that is driving it there.

The seller has included a lot more pictures and text than we have room for here. Take a look – you won’t be disappointed that you did. For all the information, to do some drooling of your own, or to bid on this two stroke time machine click on the link and . Good luck!

MI