Posts by tag: restomod

Yamaha April 6, 2019 posted by

Sorted: 1986 Yamaha RZ500 for Sale

Compared to a modern superbike, the fire-breathing performance of vintage two-stroke race replicas maybe isn’t quite as wild as their reputation would suggest. At the time, they were light and very powerful, but weren’t exactly at Grand Prix extremes of either even then. Modern machines have levels of rigidity, suspension response, and electronic assistance an old smoker like this Yamaha RZ500 could only dream of, back in the hazy 1980s. But an RZ500 still has the goods to be hustled along a canyon road, and this example has had a couple of updates to the running gear to help it hang with newer bikes.

Also known as the RD500LC in Europe and the RZV500R in Japan, the RZ500 was powered by a a liquid-cooled 50° two-stroke V4 that featured twin cranks, a pair of YPVS power valves, a balance shaft to smooth things out, and magnesium components to reduce weight. Lubrication for the two-stroke was handled by Yamaha’s Autolube oil-injection and the transmission had six speeds. At the front was a 16″ wheel and a set of anti-dive forks matched to an underslung rear shock and an 18″ hoop out back, limiting a modern rider’s access to good performance rubber.

The Yamaha RZ500 made a claimed 88hp and weighed in at 436lbs wet, while a 1986 Suzuki GSX-R750 of the same period made a claimed 106hp and weighed 465lbs wet, so performance was pretty similar on paper. However, the character of the two bikes couldn’t be more different. With heavy two-stroke smoke dripping out of the four exhaust tips and the crackle and zing of the engine, you have to work the RZ500 much harder, in spite of a pair of power valves designed to improve midrange response.

Interestingly, the Japanese market bikes received an aluminum frame to offset the reduction in power required by government restrictions. I always wonder why, since this was a premium sportbike to begin with, they didn’t just fit the aluminum frames to all of them. Certainly, if you wanted to build your dream RZ500 and throw originality to the wind, that’s what you’d probably do. This particular bike follows the path of “thoughtful evolution” and includes some components from later machines that should help the bike’s cornering prowess.

It’s maybe not a purist’s museum piece, with the later YZF750 front end and 17″ wheels. But, while the RZ500 was commendably light and agile by mid-80s standards, an update to the fork and brakes should help bring the bike closer to modern feel, while the ZX6 wheels will make tire choice much simpler, and give the new owner access to modern levels of grip.

From the original eBay listing: 1986 Yamaha RZ500 for Sale

We are a Yamaha dealer selling this bike for a 2 stroke collector’s estate. This is a great example of a 1986 Yamaha RZ500. It has a clear Pennsylvania title (has been here since at least 2006) but was originally sold in Canada. VIN is JYA52X007GA007150. The odometer reads 73 miles but since the KM speedo was replaced the actual odometer is aprox. 7500 km with about 1000 km since rebuild.

Cosmetic condition as you can see in the pics is excellent. Bodywork is all OEM including solo cowl. We’ve included a owner’s manual and service manual – all in good shape. There is 1 original factory key and 1 copy. Frame up restoration done in 2006. At that time, all seals were replaced, cylinders honed (std bore)

We’ve had our resident two-stroke tech go through the bike after a short storage. Air cleaner was replaced, tank drained, carbs removed and thoroughly cleaned, etc. Plugs replaced, fresh trans oil. Bike started easily and runs well with no clutch slippage. Left fork seal has slight seep and as any two stroke, it could take more fussing to get carburation perfect. Trans shifts very well but clutch pull a bit heavy (upgraded springs?). Brakes solid and chatter free. This is a well sorted RZ.

Upgrades and mods include but are not limited to:

  • YZF750 complete USD front end and brakes.
  • JMC custom polished swingarm
  • Penske remote reservoir rear shock
  • Alex Mayes chambers – Rare!
  • Carbon Tech low tension reeds (porting is stock)
  • ZX6 wheels (both wheels powder coated red)
  • Magnesium left engine cover
  • Braided brake lines
  • Hindsight mirrors
  • MPH speedometer
  • Zero Gravity windscreen
  • Carbon fiber meter panel

There is NO reserve or buy-it-now price on this item

Other RZ brochures and some parts are available but are not included with this bike.

Pick up at our dealership in Pennsylvania (19512) has no charge of course, but delivery by truck or international shipping is the responsibility of the buyer. 

As the seller describes it, “this is a well sorted RZ,” a daily rider that captures the feel of an earlier era of performance, with a couple modern touches. Unfortunately, there are no takers yet at the $13,000 starting bid, with just a few hours left on the auction. Is it too early in the season? Were the modifications just a bridge too far? Has the interest in two-strokes plateaued?

-tad

Sorted: 1986 Yamaha RZ500 for Sale
Suzuki October 25, 2018 posted by

2nd Life – 1983 Suzuki GSX1100S Katana

RSBFS normally shies away from buffed-up resto-mods, but this long term transformation is understated, very true to the original – and a looker.  This owner has polished where appropriate, but powder-coated in many cases, with a nice performance rebuild of the 1100cc four.

1983 Suzuki GSX1100S Katana for sale on eBay

 

On the radical side, the German firm Target Design penned their edgy 111 hp flagship, as the headlight fairing slashes its way toward 136 mph.  Suzuki’s twin-swirl combustion chamber ( TSCC ) and forged engine internals made all that power more reliable.  Ergonomics are long and low, rake and trail numbers optimized for high speed  work.  Forks had anti-dive but were not adjustable, while dual rear shocks had five selections for preload and rebound.

 

Evidently restored by the original owner, this Kat has some serious mods in the engine and could be shown as a light custom.  Some normally bright parts have been powder coated black while forks and calipers ( and float bowls ! ) have been polished.  With stripes, the paint is celebratory compared to the original.  The owner says this in the eBay auction:

The bike starts and runs great, and has about 600 miles on it since being restored.
 
Engine assembled by Scott Horner / Heads Up Performance
 
Wiseco 1160 piston kit
Heads Up Performance ported and polished head
Yoshimura stage two cams
Crank rebuilt by Falicon
New OEM rods, oil pump
Vance & Hines Super Hub rebuilt by APE Performance
APE Billet clutch basket assy, Valve job w/ bronze valve guides, Undercut trans gears, Heavy duty cam chain,
Manual cam chain tensioner, Adjustable cam sprockets, cam chain guide
Vortex Overhead oiling kit
Dyna ignition, green coils, HT wires
Paint by AT. Markus
New GSXR front master cyl & OEM rear
Stainless brake lines/fittings
Powder coated frame and all brackets
Bolts stainless, new OEM or black oxide finish
EBC Pro-lite brake disks
Works shocks
Pirelli Sport Demon tires
Rizoma Blinkers and Grips
New seals/bearings
 
With four days to run, bidding is active and has almost reached the original MSRP, at a level now reserved for singles and scooters.  It’s a lot of bike, with the forward riding position better for higher speeds.  The detailed restoration on this Katana shows well, and the engine upgrade backs the design up with plenty of oomph.
-donn
 
2nd Life – 1983 Suzuki GSX1100S Katana
Yamaha July 31, 2018 posted by

Phase Shifter – 1983 Yamaha RZ500

Here is one that will appeal to riding collectors, a 1983 Yamaha RD500LC, more commonly known as the RZ500.  Never brought into the states, this particular unit is listed as having been imported from Australia and appears to be excellent condition, although not 100% OEM.

1983 Yamaha RZ500 for sale on eBay

Some readers may wonder why the RZ500 is prized by collectors.  After all, 500cc isn’t a lot of displacement by today’s standards.   But what is forgotten is that the 500cc two strokes dominated motorcycle racing for almost three decades.  Due to the smaller engines, these bikes were fast.  I mean really fast.  Towards the end of the two stroke era companies were building two strokes that weighed about 130kgs (286lbs) and produced almost 200hp.  It should perhaps not be surprising that these bikes developed nicknames such as “the Unrideables”… “Death on wheels”… “The biggest, baddest, most evil racing motorcycles ever to see a race track.”

This California RZ has had a startling amount of improvements, engine rebuilt, intake, cooling, and exhaust systems either new or rebuilt, but the whopper is the set of late-model R6 forks and swingarm tailored for it.  With refreshed drivetrain and 30-odd years of suspension and braking improvements aboard, this might be the 500 two-stroke experience without the age-related foibles of a “classic” superbike.  Here is the owner’s list from the eBay auction:

*Bill Wilson Faze 1 built motor ~ 7,000 miles, ~100hp

*Custom Bill Wilson throttle junction / choke / oil injection cable / junction box

*Powder Coated frame

*28 mm Mikuni flat slide carbs- all rebuilt and just tuned. Custom individual tuned length throttle cables

*2010 -Yamaha complete R6 front end. Custom triple clamp adapter. Stock forks, triple clamps, clip-ons, brakes and 17” R6 wheel

*2010 -Yamaha custom R6 swingarm- $2100/ in parts alone- striping, machining, polishing and anodizing,

 *New 520 sprockets and chain. Custom brake line. Rebuilt caliper. Galfer disc and pads. 17” R6 wheel

*Jim Lomas stainless Steel expansion chambers w/ carbon fiber silencers

*Rebuilt Works Performance rear shock

*New radiator and hoses. Automatic and manual fan on switch,

*New rebuilt CDI ignition

*New rebuilt YPVS box

*Newly repainted and braced, side and bottom panels

*Custom under seat oil injection tank with indicator light

*Gas tank interior sand blasted and coated

*Current California registration

*Re-wiring extensive electrical

*Pirelli Diablo Rosso Corsa 17” tires

Obviously not meant for the display or museum, this is a rider’s RZ.  The experience of accelerating a 500cc two stroke cannot be replicated, and it’s nice to know this one can brake and turn its way out of a jam.  California registration is just the cherry on top.  Occasionally you hear that a leading manufacturer should re-introduce their classic bike, sports or muscle car with some up-to-date technology – this might be the next best thing…

-donn and Marty

 

Phase Shifter – 1983 Yamaha RZ500
Suzuki March 23, 2018 posted by

Two stroke restomod: 1986 Suzuki RG500

The problem with owning classic sportbikes is that even in their best shape, they perform like they would have 30 years ago, which can be a terrifying affair if you’re used to modern suspension and tires. Couple that with a take-no-prisoners 500cc two-stroke powerband, and you’re really playing with fire. This 1986 Suzuki RG500 has had those concerns addressed, with mods to allow it to run modern tires and reworked suspension and brakes.

1986 Suzuki RG500 restomod for sale on eBay

The work was done by renowned RG500 tech Rick Lance, and the seller says no stone was left unturned. The bike was taken down to the chassis and gone over from top to bottom. The forks have been rebuilt and the anti-dive bypassed, and the engine has been treated to a mild tune, including a rare set of aftermarket expansion chambers.

From the eBay listing:

1986 Suzuki RG500 Gamma. Full Rick Lance Gamma build “resto mod” from the frame up, in excellent condition, mods inc 17 inch wheels, GSXR brakes, Fox remote shock, upgraded forks internals, anti dive block off, plus all the usual Lance Gamma mods, filters, taps, clutch. Rare Tommy Crawford expansion chambers, motor has stock bore with mild tune, lightweight bodywork with single seat with excellent stock style paint scheme, less than one thousand miles since full build including the engine, suspension, gearbox, etc etc, as you would expect from a Rick Lance build it runs and rides perfectly, carburation is spot on pulling cleanly from idle to the red line.

Hard to find these now especially in this condition with everything being practically new, gets lots of attention where ever it goes, sounds amazing, from an era when GP bikes were 2 strokes and four cylinders there will never be anything like it again, own a piece of history!

Clean GA title in my name, located in North Georgia USA Can assist with shipping

The price is an eye-watering $26,500, which is staggering even as the price of nice stockers is climbing. That said, if a modern-style two-stroke superbike is your thing, we doubt you could build your own for cheaper.

Two stroke restomod: 1986 Suzuki RG500
Ducati January 26, 2018 posted by

Glamourpuss – 1994 Ducati 888 in Britain

The 888 was designed by Pierre Terblanche and a light update to the muscular 851, Ducati’s first desmoquattro.  American Doug Polen had won the 1991 Superbike World Championship on an uprated 851, and the 888 homolagated the changes for the next year, returning with the #1 plate.  This 888 has been treated to a silky resto-mod and a day in the photo studio.

1994 Ducati 888 ( Britain ) for sale on eBay

The architecture of Ducati’s original four-valve desmo led to a distinctive sound, the rat-a-tat exhaust announcing 104 hp.  Often seen with number plates front and rear, the fairing has fresh air intakes and snug monoposto seat.  Showa forks and Ohlins monoshock were constants throughout the build, and for 1994 a carbon front fender was added, and wheels were painted to match the bronze frame.

 

Just about everything about this English 888 has been updated and/or re-finished to a very high level.  The robot-faced front end and engraved triple-tree won’t please everyone, but the owner says most stock parts are included in the eBay auction:

Some features include:
Twin injector throttle bodies.
Full 50mm race exhaust system. New.
Corse slipper clutch.
Alloy subframe.
Vented engine casing (clutch side).
Rear ride height adjusters.
New brakes (Braking rotors), pads and lines.
New Nitron race prepared rear shock.
Revised and updated front nose with new lights.
Extended/strengthened side stand. Now does not lean over too far or spring up.
AFAM alloy chain & sprocket set.
New Bridgestone tyres BT016.
Revised one off airbox with foam filter & 916 style bell mouths and 916 throttle.
Billet rear sets, handle bars, petrol cap, levers, pre-load, reservoir caps and clutch slave cylinder.
Carbon belt covers, front mudguard, hugger, instrument surrounds.
Engraved top yoke by Don Blocksidge. Plain mirror polished top yoke also sold with the bike.
Rear swingarm, yokes, suspension linkages and fork lowers have had casting marks removed and then mirror polished.
Paintwork brought back to top standard.
Every nut and bolt changed to stainless steel.
New hoses.
Heads removed from bike and full service with valves brought up to race specs with new belts.
There’s been a lot of bespoke parts made for this bike and 100+ hours spent on the build.

 

Hard to argue with a Euro-spec 888 – brawny, rare and championship-winning, and there are a lot of nice touches here.  The alloy seat frame and improved side stand are my favorites, and the undressed pictures are at least as interesting as the studio shots.  Finding the rider to pay this kind of premium might take a little doing, but the current owner can enjoy the view while the search goes on…

-donn

 

Glamourpuss – 1994 Ducati 888 in Britain
Suzuki December 3, 2017 posted by

Featured Listing: Suzuki Carbon Katana Resto-Mod!

RSBFS has long been the leader in bringing you the best classifieds found online every day. Typically we focus on rare, original machinery and stay away from bitsa bikes, rat bikes and customs. Generally we ignore anything that devalues a collector steed. But once in a while we come across a bike done so well that we feel we would be doing our readers a disservice NOT to post it. Such is the case with this incredible Katana resto-mod. Far from a whored out ‘Busa or the like, this is a tasteful build that reflects the true spirit of the 1980s – a period correct homage, if you will – while also bringing the bike up to a more current spec.

Amazing Suzuki Katana Resto-Mod for sale!

As stunning as the stock Katana was when first introduced at the cusp of the 1980s, the shape remains effective today. This was (and is) an aggressive looking motorcycle. In fact, it’s hard to believe that the Japanese farmed out the design work to a German company; regardless of how it happened, the Katana remains one of the most polarizing motorcycles of the modern era. And this build simply reinforces the amazing shape and purpose of the bike, introducing modern technology such as carbon fiber and combining updated components to the existing platform; the original clearly shines through the updates. There is so much going on with this bike, that I will leave it to the seller to help explain the details:

From the seller:
Darren Begg of dB Customs has quickly established himself as a leader in world-class restomod builds. His builds often retain the original silhouette and paint scheme of the vintage sport bike while upgrading the powerplant, suspension, brakes, and switch gear. The results are high-powered icons of yesteryear, brought fully into the modern age — the true spirit of the restomod.

More from the seller:
Ray Mancini of Xtreme Motorsports, in Tennessee, built the motor. A 1260cc 173hp (@counter shaft) (110 ft-lbs trq.) was created for this Carbon Katana. Ray used a MTC Block,Webcam cams (.370/256), long hard weld rockers, his Stage 1 ported head with 1mm oversized stainless valves, top end oiler, HD case studs, under cut transmission and a balanced crank. 10.5-1 compression pistons fed by 38mm RS Mikuni carbs and relieved by a JayGUI Racing Exhaust finish it off. A Powder coated frame, Carbon Fiber Fuel tank cover and Carbon body work sourced from Japan keep it black.

More from the seller:
The build includes Brembo brakes, Öhlins Racing AB suspension, Dynatek Electronics ignition, OZ Racing wheels. Michelin Pilot Power 2CT tires. Underbridged and modified Bandit 1200 Swingarm. Billet Triple Trees from Pulse Performance. Woodcraft Technologies rearsets, Speedcell battery, Koso gauge cluster, Yoshimura Japan Co.,Ltd. throttle and cables, GSXR 1000 controls. Rizoma Spy Bar Ends. Paint work by Sketchs Ink (all paint, no decals!). It is a one of a kind powerhouse bringing together the past and present! Titled in Arizona. Delivery available.

1980s Katanas remain a pretty hot item in the collector world. In 1981 this was the fastest street motorcycle available, bar none. But nothing introduced nearly 40 years ago can be considered in the same performance vein as anything remotely modern thanks to the inexorable march of technology. This is a bike that someone like Pops Yoshimura would have envisioned back in the day, had any of these parts been available. But this bike is more than just a sum of the parts. This phenomenal build takes the spirit and intent of the original Katana and multiplies it many times over.

There are many collectors in our ranks that own factory hot rods from a bygone age. And while in some areas these bikes can still deliver the goods, the inevitable truth is that performance benchmarks have not remained static over the years. Even something like an uber-rare oval piston NR750 will feel tame compared to today’s crop of hyper 600s. Imagine being able to ride the dream machine from your youth, but with the power (173 HP!), suspension (Ohlins), brakes (Brembo) and handling that you’ve come to expect in today’s world. That would be a true dream machine, and that is exactly what this Carbon Katana delivers. This is a one-off built by someone who did not pinch pennies; the results are obvious and the outcome is glorious. You could not replicate this for the asking price, making this both a dream AND a bargain. Check it out here, because this one will go as fast as it looks. What a build!!

MI

Featured Listing: Suzuki Carbon Katana Resto-Mod!
Suzuki December 29, 2016 posted by

Sensible Upgrades: 1986 Suzuki RG500Γ for Sale

One of the most desirable sportbikes of the 1980s, the Suzuki RG500Γ was in a class of basically two with the Yamaha RZ500. Powered by a two-stroke square four it shared with no other bike in Suzuki’s lineup, the Gamma was intended to evoke their Grand Prix racebikes, which led to an interesting dilemma: two-strokes were still king in the racing world, but their smoky emissions and poor fuel-consumption were dooming them to irrelevance in the real world. And while quarter-liter two-strokes continued well into the 1990s, “big” 500cc two-stroke fours from Suzuki and Yamaha lasted for just a couple years.

The Gamma’s 400lbs and 100hp weren’t cutting-edge numbers even in their day, but the relatively light weight and 500cc power meant that, although there were faster bikes in a straight-line, the Gamma had that magical combination of agility and top-end hit that two-stroke fans find so addictive. Or maybe burnt two-stroke oil has some sort of narcotic effect? Sure, yesterday’s Triumph Daytona would probably kill it in any quantifiable measure of performance, but what would you expect from a thirty year-old motorcycle?

Today’s example is very sharp-looking and has been modified to use wider 17″ wheels front and rear. Purists might balk, but finding sticky [and safe] modern rubber to fit those very skinny [120 wide at the rear!] stock items might be difficult and I think it improves the look of the bike, although aesthetics are certainly subjective.

From the original eBay listing: 1986 Suzuki RG500Γ for Sale

GAMMA, totally refurbished, Lance Gamma tune, top end, pipes. Carbs bored, air filters, ride height adj, RaceTech forks, Fox shock, GSX-R400 rims, new body work and paint. Bike comes with owners manual, shop manual, custom stand, race stand, cover, and Suzuki leather jacket size 48. Bike runs and idles perfectly. If u have ever wanted one, this is the one. Don’t let this pass you up, bike will only appreciate.

Digging back through our archives, it doesn’t look like this example has graced the pages of RSBFS. Obviously, restomods can be a bit divisive, but I’m a fan as long as they’re done tastefully and this one looks pretty class, assuming that carbon dash is real carbon fiber… Even the slightly updated graphics on that solo tail look great, and it has the required Lance Gamma tune. The price for this pristine, tastefully-modified Gamma? A cool $23,000. That’s pretty steep, but the bike looks sharp enough to justify that kind of cash, and if you’ve been looking for a lightly-modified RG500, this might be the time to dig deep.
-tad
Sensible Upgrades: 1986 Suzuki RG500Γ for Sale
Kawasaki April 4, 2015 posted by

She Sells Sanctuary: 1975 Kawasaki Z1 Streetfighter for Sale

1975 Kawasaki Z1 Restomod R Front

This isn’t something we’d normally feature here on RSBFS, but given the effort that went into this restomod Kawasaki Z1 and the performance that’s likely on tap, it seemed like a fun bike to share.

1975 Kawasaki Z1 Restomod L Front

Keep in mind: “musclebike” and “sportbike” are general terms at best, not a specific category of motorcycle. And remember, they raced “superbikes” that looked a whole lot like this one on tracks throughout the 1970’s. On the road, where slow in, fast out is the name of the game, I’d bet a bike like this one would give most “genuine” sportbikes a real run for their money.

1975 Kawasaki Z1 Restomod R Rear

Based around Kawasaki’s beastly Z1 that dominated the roads of the mid to late 1970’s, much of the customization that’s gone into this one seems intended to address the original bike’s glaring weakness: a flexible frame that made serious cornering pretty much out of the question.

1975 Kawasaki Z1 Restomod Dash

There’s plenty more detail regarding the build and seemingly every part that went into it over at the original eBay listing: 1975 Kawasaki Z1 900 Restomod Streetfighter

I built this bike to mimic a Sanctuary built streetfighter from Japan. I built it as though I were going to ride and enjoy it. The stock Z1s are cool, but they are flexi fliers. I wanted a bike that would handle like a modern bike, but still have the look and feel of the original Z1. I started with a 75 Z1 900 and a 2000 ZRX1100 then added time and money. Having completed the bike, I now realize that I really enjoy building these bikes. So I thought, if somebody were interested in this bike at a good price, I’d let it go and build another.

This is a matching numbers 1975 Z1 with updated suspension, wheels and brakes.

Frame: stock Z1 frame modified with gussets to minimize flex, rear shocks cantilevered.

Forks: KYB 43mm, 2000 ZRX1100.

Electrical, all new harnesses including a hybrid electrical system. This hybrid system has modern relays and uses modern fuses, 5 of them. The system includes electronic ignition and a voltage regulator/rectifier combo. The goal was to provide a dependable electrical system for years to come.

Engine: Fresh built, less than 50 miles. Transmission, shift forks, cylinder head, cylinders and crankshaft are from a pristine low mileage 1978 KZ1000(11K miles). The internals were beautiful so I kept them aside for this project. The piston kit is an MTC 1076cc. Cylinders were bored to match by Joe Hooper at Pit Stop Performance. The cylinder head was worked by Joe at Pit Stop as well. The head has been completely rebuilt including fresh valve guides, seals, heavy duty springs. The valve train is standard over bucket shim. The cams are new Web Cams, 410 lift and they have been degreed per manufacturer’s specifications. To finish out the valve train, a new cam chain, guides, pillow blocks, and all 3 rollers were installed. The side covers are all powder coated flat black, the cases, cylinder and head are high temp gloss black. No broken fins or cracks, the best of the best on this motor.

1975 Kawasaki Z1 Restomod R Rear

If you’re not familiar with “Sanctuary” as mentioned by the seller, pop onto Google and take a look. They’re based out of Japan and sell premium parts like titanium headers for Japanese bikes. Complete Sanctuary builds tend to be stunning distillations of the Japanese superbikes of the 1970’s and drip with titanium, carbon fiber, and exquisite detailing.

This guy may not quite achieve that level perfection, but you’re getting 90% of the finished product for 30% of the cost, and that seems like a pretty good deal for a bike you can ride to bike nights, rip around backroads, or even pack up with luggage and ride to the ends of the earth…

-tad

1975 Kawasaki Z1 Restomod R Side

She Sells Sanctuary: 1975 Kawasaki Z1 Streetfighter for Sale