Posts by tag: twin

Yamaha September 10, 2019 posted by

Ringer: 1984 Yamaha RZ350

I know that the RSBFS reader loves a good two stroke. And what better to post than a well-kept Yamaha RZ350? The last of the true factory street bike smokers, the RZ was successfully imported into the US – and even California! – for a short while. And so while these are not grey bikes snuck across the border from elsewhere, they are legitimately rare and loved for what they are. And unlike a nearly $20k Gamma or RZ500, the 350 is something that mere mortals can afford, and live with on a daily basis.

1984 Yamaha RZ350 for sale on eBay

The reed-valve parallel twin that powers the RZ350 is a spiritual successor to the air cooled units on the earlier RD series. Bristling with 1980s technology such as liquid cooling and a power valve exhaust port, the RZ was built to be very robust. Capable of being reliably tuned to significant horsepower increases via compression, porting and bolt-on changes (with requisite carb jetting, of course), the RZ was something that could be enjoyed in stock form and could continue to grow. Today while RZ-specific tuner parts are not readily available (after all, this model has not been sold for many, many years), the aftermarket quad scene is still going strong and there is a lot of knowledge about these motors in that community.

From the seller:
Up for sale today is a very low mileage 1984 Yamaha RZ350. The bike is is very good condition and in excellent running order. It starts on first or second kick every time and everything operates as it should. There are 2 small dents on the left side of the tank about the size of a quarter and nickle respectively that someone touched up and the rest is normal wear in my estimation. The paint shows very well and the only no oem items on the bike are the mirrors,exhaust and air filter ( has a K&N on it now but I have the original airbox that goes with the bike.

The last several RZs that we saw pass through eBay showed strong bidding and a significant amount of action. That speaks to the popularity of these bikes. This is especially true for those that are in exceptional condition and include the rare – yet power robbing – original parts such as the catalytic converter exhaust pipes. This particular bike appears to be in good condition, and sports period-correct mods such as the airbox and expansion chambers. The seller notes some minor damage to the tank (not particularly well shown in the pics) and non-standard mirrors (the original RZ items are round). But with lower mileage and an overall clean appearance this could be a good buy if everything else checks out. The going rate for a great RZ these days tops the $10k mark, so set your barometers accordingly. This one sits just below $6k with only a few days to go. Check it out here, as we don’t often see these bikes hang around long at auction. If your’re itching for something to collect, something to ride, something to hot rod – or maybe all of the above – you’d be hard pressed to do better than a RZ350. These are still relatively affordable, and all the fun you remembered. Good Luck!!

MI

Ringer:  1984 Yamaha RZ350
BMW August 31, 2019 posted by

About Time: 1982 Krauser-BMW MKM1000

I must admit, I’ve been sitting on the sidelines on this one. After the 3rd or 4th time around on eBay, I figured it was about time I wrote it up here (it was already on our Facebook site). After all, it is a freaking Krauser frame with seemingly pristine bodywork. That makes this a rare bird. A pretty bird. A pretty rare bird. The pinnacle of the early 1980s frame game (spearheaded by Bimota, but with Harris, Spondon, Elgi and others close behind), Krauser was one of the few tuners that offered performance products for BMW; the other was Luftmeister. And while the latter focused primarily on turbocharging for relatively cheap grunt, Krauser was an all around performance shop. They offered bolt-on bits, bodywork, engine upgrades (including custom 4-valve heads), and the crown jewel of them all, the MKM1000 kit. Meant to transform the staid “Gentleman’s Express” into a true sports bike, the Krauser kit accepted BMW running gear into a bespoke (and very trick) frame. Custom bodywork completed the transformation from sheep to wolf.

1982 Krauser-BMW MKM1000 for sale on eBay

Under the skin is where the Krauser MKM1000 really shines. Following the Bimota route of utilizing straight tubes to properly channel loads, the MKM (Michael Krause Motorcycles) frame is often referred to as a “birdcage” type. Painstakingly time-consuming and expensive to create, this complex arrangement of straight tubes results in a stiffer frame that is also lighter than conventional frame arrangements. The 1000cc BMW boxer motor appears to hang in mid-air in an unusually high manner. This is because Krauser lifted the engine to provide more cornering clearance for the vulnerable cylinder heads. Shaft drive, along with the rest of the tranny and running gear of the donor R100 was maintained.

From the seller:
Here we have a Krauser MKM1000 in stunning condition.

Ultra rare super low production numbers. An opportunity to own one of perhaps 200 built. This is number 42. The quintessential collectible Airhead, it doesn’t get any better than this. Mileage is 29,573 kms (18483 miles).

The bird cage frame, which there are 52 straight tubes and four curved chromium molybdenum tubes welded together at 150 points, weighed in just 11.6 kilograms. A series of other changes were made when integrating the R100RS parts. Engine sat slightly higher, front forks were 38mm lower, rake and trail were increased, wheelbase made longer by 43mm, custom rear sets, 21 litre aluminium fuel tank hidden under the elegant one piece tank cover, seat and rear cowling. A matching aerodynamic fairing was developed for the autobahn and a wider swingarm allowed for a wider rear wheel and rubber. Weighing just 496 pounds wet, the MKM was lighter than all of its competition, including the Ducati Super Sport and the Moto Guzzi Le Mans.

Recently complied for road use in New Zealand and has a current warrant of fitness. This can be exported to any port in the world. Please ask for shipping details.

On paper – and in person – the MKM1000 really looks like a competitive threat to similar sporting hardware of the era. Light in weight, aerodynamic in form and purposeful in stance, the Krauser offering could have been a contender. But while the airhead BMW unit is revered for longevity and it’s bulletproof ability to eat up mile after mile, it is far from a powerhouse. With heavy crank and rods it doesn’t rev particularly quickly, and even BWM gave up on it when they entered WSBK racing with a more conventional inline four. The jacking effect of the shaft drive can get in the way of spirited cornering, and while its effects can be minimized with some suspension tuning it is always present. So while the paper tells a tale, the proof was not exactly the same. All in all, the Krauser MKM1000 was well reviewed and an iconic and rare unicorn for the Beemer faithful.

As mentioned above, this particular bike has been around the auction block for a few tries. It is located in beautiful Auckland, New Zealand, which is currently in the winter season. The seller appears willing to ship to all ports of call, which makes this a particularly good find. Better yet, hop over to the northern of the NZ islands and enjoy the fabulous Kiwi hospitality, take in the sights and sounds, check out the bike in person, and then bring it back home. Now that sounds like a great vacation souvenir. We have seen one or two of these amazing machines on these pages in years past, but they remain rare and pretty elusive. Check this one out here, and Good Luck!!

MI

About Time: 1982 Krauser-BMW  MKM1000
Yamaha December 16, 2018 posted by

Red, White and Blue (smoke): 1984 Yamaha RZ350

The RZ market is pretty crazy right now. RSBFS staffers have seen bikes of all types of condition with pricing all over the map. We’ve seen bargains, we’ve seen riders and we’ve seen basket cases. We’ve come across amazing time capsules of authenticity, and seen the results of ambitious projects (sometimes gone bad). The bottom line is that the lowly RZ350 is as close to a sure thing as you are going to get in the current market. Regardless of condition, we are seeing these bikes sell. That must be pretty exciting for RZ owners out there. And for those in the market for the last of the street legal factory smokers, the good news is that we continue to see a good supply of the model. Which brings us to today’s example: a low mileage, red and white example of the breed that seems to have survived the ravages of time and riders.

1984 Yamaha RZ350 for sale on eBay

For those of you who missed the heyday of the two stroke, pull up a chair. You see children, back before people realized that they liked to breathe and came to the realization that vehicles spewing out noxious smoke, visible gasses and other delicious cancer-causing fumes were not a great long-term health plan, pretty much anything could be put on the road. And like any other performance category, sport motorcycles were all about low weight and high power. And pound for pound, a two stroke is a far more potent form of motive power than a heavier, more complicated four stroke. Sure, they sounded like chainsaws. Yes, they often disappeared in clouds of blue smoke. Indeed, they were a pain in the butt at the gas pump – not only did they get crappy gas mileage, riders had to mix oil into the gas in a precise ratio. But the payoffs were (almost) worth it when the tach swung up past 7,500 RPM or so and the power band began. Below that there was nothing, and with only a narrow RPM range of usable power, these were not the easiest mounts to ride in anger. The EPA started cracking down in the 1970s, and by the early 1980s the smoking party was over. But it was damn fun while it lasted.

From the seller:
Up for sale is a 1984 Yamaha RZ350. This bike is in Museum quality condition. Paint on entire bike is original and in like new condition. This bike comes with the dual seat option. exhaust resinators where removed at some point. If you are looking at this bike then I’m sure you aware of its heritage and the somewhat rareness of it. There are only 2 minor flaws, 1- the windscreen has a sratch on the painted area. 2- The tank has one dent on the left side.

The RZ350 is the little bike that could. Pitted against 550 and 600 cc four stroke machines, the little screamer could hold its own. But to even get it on the road, Yamaha had to throw a lot of technology into the form factor. An exhaust power valve automatically adjusted the exhaust port height depending upon specific conditions, making the parallel twin more efficient. Evaporation canisters to capture fuel vapors were starting to appear, and exist on the RZ. But the real secrets were hidden in the exhaust pipes. What looked like two stroke chambers were really a complex series of catalytic converters with air injection. These made it possible to import the RZ into nearly all 50 states for it’s limited run of 2 years (CA only received 1985 model year bikes).

This particular RZ has very few miles on it for the age (4,028). It looks to be in decent condition, although it may not have been an indoor pet all of it’s life given some of the light corrosion. The seller points out the relatively small flaws of windscreen scratch and tank blemish, but otherwise all parts appear to be attached. The pipes are not the stock units, and there appear to be some other small aftermarket additions over time (fuel line and filter, for example). The term “museum” is an ambiguous word that comes up all too often in adverts. Calling this example out as museum quality depends upon the type of museum you frequent. This is not a zero mile, just been un-crated, never been run, never been rode or never been parked outside type of bike. This is certainly a low mileage survivor, and for those that want to ride, this is usually the better option. The seller is asking for some pretty strong numbers for this bike – but the market will pay what the market can bear. You can’t fault someone for asking, and the Buy It Now approach with a willingness to accept offers might just be a great way for the seller and buyer to meet closer to the middle. Check it out here – there is not a lot of text but a good number of decent pictures. And then you just have to answer one more question: Do you RZ? Good Luck!!

MI

Red, White and Blue (smoke): 1984 Yamaha RZ350
Honda November 28, 2018 posted by

Royal Crown: 2004 Honda RC51

In the soda wars of the 1980s, Coca-Cola was the big dog. But others were keen to move in on the success of Coke, including Pepsi and RC Cola. Each had a slightly different take on the same theme, and competed for the same set of customers. Fast forward to the late 1990s and you could see the same situation developing in World Superbike racing. Ducati had the dominant platform with their legendary 916 (and 851 before that), winning 8 championships and effectively shutting out the other manufacturers. Given the rules and concessions afforded to twins in WSBK (displacement and weight, for example), other factories jumped on the copycat bandwagon. Honda in particular put their four cylinder screamers aside for a roaring v-twin designed to take the fight to Bologna. The bike that was developed became the very successful RC51. Winning the 2000 WSBK title the first year out with Colin Edwards, the RC51 also found success Stateside in the AMA under the guidance of one Nicky Hayden.

2004 Honda RC51 for sale on eBay

Officially known as the RVT1000R in the US, the RC51 was the spiritual successor to the RC30 and RC45; it was built to go racing and win races. And while four cylinder WSBK machines were limited to 750cc, twins were allowed up to 999cc – providing more torque and HP over a lower RPM limit. Designing a new 90 degree twin displacing 999cc, the RC51 featured four valves per cylinder, gear-driven cams and a unique twin injector per cylinder for better fueling across the rev range. And speaking of revs, the RC51 was somewhat limited on the RPM front to the 10k range in favor of longevity due to the large bore / short stroke arrangement. The chassis was pure Honda – aluminum twin beam – with striking side-mounted radiators. While this made for a wider arrangement than the 916, the side-mounted rads were effective and aerodynamic.

From the seller:
Solo seat, Santo pipes, Penske shocks, GPR steering stabilizer, Power Commander.

Very clean, runs great, sounds great, excellent condition. Title in hand. Ready to go.

An overall competitive package, the RC51 was met with great rider enthusiasm; this was partly due to the price. While uber-limited RC30 and RC45s sold new for $25k+, the “lowly” RC51 was a veritable bargain with MSRP one buck below ten grand. There was even a Nicky Hayden edition sold, consisting of cosmetic changes such as brushed aluminum frame and swingarm, number plates and stickers. There were two generations of this model, the SP1 offered from 2000 to 2001, and all others are considered SP2 editions with minor suspension and fueling updates and some geometry changes. By 2006 the twin-cylinder party was over for Honda – as was factory WSBK racing for the time being. When they reemerged from their WSBK absence the new platform was back to the old in-line four ways of the FireBlade. Thus the RC51 is not exactly homologation rare, but relatively low numbers were produced over a short period of time.

Like the cola wars that preceded it, there were many interpretations of the same flavor. The RC51 remains a unique example of Honda taking the fight to Ducati on their turf and for a brief moment, winning the war. The resulting bike was massively capable, with Honda’s penchant for reliability and build quality. While a bit porky from some angles, the RC51 is a mean racing machine, and remains a desirable mount for practically any type of riding. This particular example shows few miles (less than 6k), and has some nice add-ons such as tasty Sato exhaust, suspension upgrades and a Power Commander to aid in fueling/tuning. More importantly, it has all the elements of a Nicky Hayden Edition, although not noted by the seller. With an opening ask of $6,000 this bike is starting out in the fair money range, if not the upper side of that neighborhood. No takers thus far, but there is still a long way to go. Check it out here if you are looking to pick up an under-appreciated superbike with real racetrack creds. It may not be the most coveted of the RC set, but this one still looks, sounds and goes like an RC should. Good Luck!!

MI

Royal Crown:  2004 Honda RC51
Ducati April 7, 2018 posted by

Ugly no more? 2005 Ducati 999R

When the 999 series was introduced in 2003 as the successor to the fantastic 916/996/998 genealogy of Ducati Superbikes, the world collectively groaned. Far removed from the sexy, flowing lines of the Tamburini-penned predecessors, the Terblanche-designed 999 series was rough and angular. The stacked headlight arrangement made the bike instantly recognizable in the sort of way a clown sticks out in a police lineup consisting of otherwise normal, average businessmen. In short, it was everything the earlier generations were not. There was some commonality for the Ducati faithful, however: Performance. The 999 – and especially the top-of-the-line R model – were quicker and faster than the bikes that came before. This became especially evident in World Superbike racing; so good was the platform that the 999 soldiering on through the 2007 racing season even though the bike ended production in 2006.

2005 Ducati 999R for sale on eBay

Despite the appearance, the aerodynamics of the 999 was actually more efficient than the earlier models. This translated not only into racetrack success, but a better riding experience. With greater adjustability and better ergonomics, more riders could enjoy the extreme Ducati experience. And what an experience – thanks to the updated L-twin testaretta engine now producing 150 HP at nearly 10,000 RPM. But as most of you already know, it is the torque of the desmoquattro twin that really drives the bike off of the corners. To that end Ducati fitted the 999R with radial-mount Brembo calipers, the very best equipment to slow you down for the next bend in the road. Out back the braced box-section swing arm keeps track of the rear wheel movement with fewer unsprung pounds than the earlier single-sided unit. Ohlins suspension (fully adjustable, naturally) completes the impressive list of components bolted to the R spec superbike.

From the seller:
2005 999R with 4081 miles. I’m the 2nd owner. I purchased from the original owner back in 2011 . Since then I’ve added a few parts including the following:

-Brembo 19 RCS brake master cylinder
-Brembo 16 RCS brake master cylinder
-Carbon large intake tubes (with aftermarket filter but can’t remember brand)
-Carbon rear hugger
-Custom LED rear lights
-Fender eliminator
-Gearing change (with chain)
-4 post slipper clutch
-Swapped Ohlins OE rear for RS Ohlins with remote adjuster
-Swapped OE calipers for gold M4 calipers
-Free float rotors
-Swapped rear rotors
-Custom full titanium exhaust
-Dynojet tune for bigger custom exhaust
-Comes with Ducati spare keys and card to reprogram keys

The ugly-duckling 999R was an exclusive and expensive piece of kit. Produced in low numbers (an estimated 200 units in 2005), the R model would set you back 30 large bills a decade and a half ago. At the time, many would-be buyers considered that a ridiculous price for such a visual departure from normal Ducati supermodel status. Today, we find that the 999 series has aged rather well. The lines have held up better than the so many me-too copies that permeate the used bike listings. This is a distinctive, evocative motorcycle that brings substantial performance along for the ride. Look closely at the details – for example how the “Ducati” and “999R” logos on the fairing are actually clear coated showing the carbon fiber below – and then look at the price for a decent used example. Ugly no more, indeed.

At the time of writing this 4,000 mile bike has just crossed over the $8k mark, with reserve still in place. We have seen these bikes push into the $20ks for pristine examples, down to the high teens for others in good condition. This particular specimen has been modified to some degree, but most changes have been in the interest of performance. Check out this beast here, and let’s see what the market says. Meanwhile, head over to our Comments section and share your thoughts on the 999: Love it or hate it? Is this a “future collectable” that you can still afford today? Let us know!

MI

Ugly no more?  2005 Ducati 999R
Honda January 17, 2017 posted by

Survivability – 1995 Honda CBR900RR

Honda designers set their sights on a slighter, lighter superbike for the early 1990’s and based the new model on a 750cc in-house prototype. With a new 893cc engine installed, the resulting package was just a tad heavier than Honda’s own 600, and had a substantial weight advantage on other unlimiteds.

1995 Honda CBR900RR for sale on eBay

With Fred Merkel’s ’88-89 Superbike World Championships in the rearview view mirror, Honda executives wanted something new at the superbike end of the showroom.  New for 1992, the CBR900RR used the alloy twin-spar chassis, with aluminum swingarm.   For the 1994 update, Showa revised the spring rates for the cartridge forks and rear shock for the Pro-Link progressive rear.  The forks also had adjustable compression damping to help tame the quick front end with its 16-inch wheel.  A new nose for the fairing incorporated asymmetrical “fox-eye” headlights, another weight saver.

Under 10,000 miles and 20 years separate this CBR from the dealer’s floor, and though it’d be hard to call almost any Honda rare, how many double-R’s have been tucked away clean and stock ?  The Jersey-based owner keeps his comments spare in the eBay auction:

Very Rare Like New

Everything is original except D&D Slip-on

Peculiarly without a racing class since WSBK ruled a four-cylinder could displace only 750cc, the open-class CBR900RR set the world on its ear, with weight and handling from the class below, and power a match for any liter bike.  The angular and modern 1994 update remained true to the formula.  After that the inevitable weight gain and mission creep nudged the model toward daily driver or sport-touring realm.  For fans of the brand or the ‘Blade, the 1994-5 model year is a great choice, and this example is unfettered with low miles…

-donn

Survivability – 1995 Honda CBR900RR
BMW June 1, 2015 posted by

Unlikely Track-Day Hero: 2008 BMW HP2 Sport

2008 BMW HP2 Sport R Side Front

Prior to the “if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em” S1000RR, BMW’s sportbikes were decidedly offbeat. They were almost like the Saab of the motorcycle world, with remote-operated brake master cylinders, shaft-drive, unconventional suspensions, and that durable and charismatic, but very, very wide horizontally-opposed engine. And their last hurrah before the stunningly capable S1000RR was the stunningly improbably HP2 Sport.

2008 BMW HP2 Sport L Side Rear

It shouldn’t work, and really wasn’t capable of going toe-to-toe with the best literbikes from Japan on paper. But period testers seemed to understand that the bike wasn’t meant for everyone and was a statement of intent from BMW that they could make more than just stodgy, old-man bikes. The HP2 isn’t featherweight and was certainly expensive when new, but top-shelf suspension gave amazing handling and stability, in spite of the Telelever suspension’s reputation for blunting front-end feedback. Carbon-fiber everything and a cool self-supporting seat/subframe unit kept weight under 400lbs dry, and a slick digital dash looked like it’d be more at home on a race bike, while being far more legible than similar displays used by Ducati at the time.

2008 BMW HP2 Sport L Side

And the engine wasn’t just some sort of high-compression and ECU-tweak affair. The HP2 featured new DOHC heads and radial valves that helped the bike produce 128hp and rev all the way to 9,500rpm, although there is a price to be paid: the brittle Titanium connecting rods call for replacement at 30,000 miles. Not the worst job on a twin with the heads sticking out in the breeze, but something to keep in mind.

2008 BMW HP2 Sport Dash

The original eBay listing for this 2008 BMW HP2 Sport contains very little information about the bike, but does feature plenty of photos and mentions that the bike is “in good overall condition” and that a six-mile test ride as part of the dealer’s “As Is” buying policy.

2008 BMW HP2 Sport L Side Front

All this adds up to a bike that was genuinely fun to flog around a track or twisty back road, although all those enhancements serve to emphasize a couple of shortcomings: sportbike grip and handling mean that it is possible to deck out the heads at extreme lean angles, and the bike is just begging for a slipper clutch. One is available, but the longitudinal engine orientation and shaft drive mean that fitting it is a headache to fit.

2008 BMW HP2 Sport R Side Rear

Bidding is pretty active and up to $7,600 with three days left on the auction. These are genuinely rare, high-spec sportbikes and, while this example has a few very minor cosmetic blemishes, we’re looking at a pretty good opportunity for BMW enthusiasts to grab one of these before they get squirreled away by collectors.

-tad

2008 BMW HP2 Sport R Side

Unlikely Track-Day Hero: 2008 BMW HP2 Sport
BMW August 9, 2012 posted by

Bavarian Stunner – 2009 BMW HP2 Sport

Location: Grand Rapids, Michigan

Mileage: 3,200

Price: Auction, $18k BIN

You may not be into BMW bikes, but if you don’t think the HP2 Sport is one of the most exquisitely built sportbikes on the planet? Well, my friend, to quote the late Freddie Mercury – you’re stone cold crazy. Whether you like the horizontally opposed twin, or the shaft drive, it really doesn’t matter, cause how can you argue with Ohlins suspension, unbelievable build quality (I think NASA went to BMW for tips on the new Mars rover) and carbon fiber everywhere. And just look at that rear wheel. The HP2 Sport is a stunner. You would be hard pressed to find a better built bike.

Here’s the info from the seller-

This is the most desirable version – a 2009 with ABS.  There are not many of these in the USA and prices are now edging up.  This bike is stock except it has a carbon rear fender and several hundred dollars in titanium and alloy fasteners.  It also has a Shorai Lithium battery which saves about 8lbs.  The tires have approximately 300 miles on them.  The bike is in excellent condition with two very minor cosmetic imperfections –  a chip/imperfection in the clear-coat on the tail-light bracket (could be very easily fixed with a shot of clear-coat) and a very tiny stone chip on the paint on the rear wheel which you probably would not notice in person if I didn’t mention it.  I have safety-wired critical fasters but the bike has never been raced or abused.  I am 51 years old and a retired multi-championship winning roadracer.  The point being – I am mature and treat my bikes very well.  I am only selling it because I have far too many bikes and I am now doing most of my riding with my wife. 

The reserve is very reasonable.

Good luck bidding,

Drew

And some of the many photos at the auction-

Based on the seller’s description, you would be getting a solid bike with this HP2 Sport. There are only minor modifications and the seller mentions in the auction that the stock fasteners come with the bike. There are two very minor cosmetic issues the seller points out. Mileage is low. Bike looks fantastic. Not sure there are any other issues to address.

I’m sure you all know that these bikes will run you a chunk of change brand new (around $25k). You can take this one home for $18k right now. If you have been looking, I think you may have found your ride. To place your bid or just buy this beauty, make the jump!

-RN