Page 1


Ex-Aussie ace!

SUZUKI STINGER Buyer’s guide!


One for the


! K W A H R E P SUHonda’s CB77 ridden! FIVE DECADES OF CLASSIC MOTORCYCLE MECHANICS INCLUDING: 90s: Suzuki GSX-R750 SRAD, Kawasaki AR50. 80s: Yamaha TZR250 Racing. 70s: Big-bore Z1000 project, Hybrid Kawasaki KH250/500, Project CB750 K2. Also: Fix bulb holders, Q&A: Your questions answered and your bikes and memories!

January 2018 Issue 363 Publisher: Dan Savage, Contributors: Joe Dick, Kevin Larkins, Ralph Ferrand. Art Editor: Justin Blackamore Picture Desk: Paul Fincham, Jonathan Schofield, Angie Sisestean Production Editor: Dan Sharp Divisional advertising team leader: Zoe Thurling Tel: 01507 529412 Advertising: Robert Bee, Tel: 01507 529575 Subscription manager: Paul Deacon Circulation manager: Steven O’Hara Marketing manager: Charlotte Park Commercial director: Nigel Hole Editorial address: CLASSIC MOTORCYCLE MECHANICS MAGAZINE, Media Centre, Morton Way, Horncastle, Lincolnshire LN9 6JR Website: General enquiries and back issues: Tel: 01507 529529 24 hour answer phone Archivist: Jane Skayman, 01507 529423 Subscription: Full subscription rates (but see page 36 for offer): (12 months 12 issues, inc post and packing) – UK £50.40. Export rates are also available – see page 36 for more details. UK subscriptions are zero-rated for the purposes of Value Added Tax. Customer services: Tel: 01507 529529 Lines are open: Monday-Friday 8.30am-7pm Saturday 8.30am-12:30pm Distribution: Marketforce UK Ltd, 5 Churchill Place, Canary Wharf, London E14 5HU. Tel: 0203 787 9001 Subscription agents: CLASSIC MOTORCYCLE MECHANICS MAGAZINE, Media Centre, Morton Way, Horncastle, Lincolnshire LN9 6JR Printed: William Gibbons & Sons, Wolverhampton Published date: CLASSIC MOTORCYCLE MECHANICS MAGAZINE is published on the third Wednesday of every month Next issue: January 17, 2018 Advertising deadline: December 20, 2017 © Mortons Media Group Ltd. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or any information storage retrieval system without prior permission in writing from the publisher. ISSN 0959-0900 CLASSIC MOTORCYCLE MECHANICS magazine takes all responsible steps to ensure advice and technical tips are written by experienced and competent people. We also advise readers to seek further professional advice if they are unsure at any time. Anything technical written by the editor is exempt – he’s rubbish with spanners. CLASSIC MOTORCYCLE MECHANICS (USPS:729-550) is published monthly by Mortons Media Group Ltd, PO Box 99, Horncastle, Lincolnshire LN9 6LZ UK. USA subscriptions are $60 per year from Motorsport Publications LLC, 7164 Cty Rd N #441, Bancroft WI 54921. Periodical Postage is paid at Wisconsin Rapids, WI. Postmaster: Send address changes to CLASSIC MOTORCYCLE MECHANICS, Motorsport Publications LLC, 7164 Cty Rd N #441, Bancroft WI 54921. 715572-4595

A cool kit for just three grand… This month John Nutting enjoyed a very special kit bike. The CRK Triumph Roadster takes the basic bits of a 20 (or more) year old bike from Hinckley and transforms it into something unique. You can mix and match parts from the café racer kit to pretty much tailor the bike to what you want from it. We know that some of you out there may quail a little at the prospect of cannibalising a classic bike. Steve Cooper talks about the very same thing this month in his Kawasaki Hybrid build and the T300 series of Hinckley Triumphs are fast-becoming classic themselves – but you can find bikes out there that would otherwise just fade away. We think that our friends at Café Racer Kits have manufactured another stunning kit bike

The Professional Publishers Association


Ralph Ferrand

Allen Millyard

Despite being on hols Scoop rides a CB77, finishes his Stinger and sorts out bulb holders and a (Stinger) buyer guide.

Ralph is on with the Kawasaki big-bore Zed on page 64 and – next month – gets on with a Laverda Jota!

In the second of his monthly columns, Allen explains just what goes into some of his amazing specials builds.

Our man in Singapore

John Nutting CRK’s cover star is a bike you could build for as little as £3000, according to our Nutters. And he loved it: page 38.

Jeff Ware

Our mate from Aus Jeff gives us the low-down on Honda CB1100R once raced by an Aussie legend.

Why not Just Ask your local newsagent to reserve you a copy each month?

Steve Cooper

Down Under Digger

Having trouble finding a copy of this magazine?


Cool kit rider

Independent publisher since 1885

which will give people an easy start into the arena of building a unique special. Talking of easy starts, our own Charlie Oakman admits he may not have done much to his TZR250 racer. This is due to an admittance of being more than a tad spanner shy, but – in nine months – he took a bike that could otherwise have languished in a shed for another 10 years back out on track. Fair play to him! So, whatever your level: be it a project manager of a rebuild, a first-time kit bike buyer or a master engineer like our own Allen Millyard, just enjoy it!

Big Zed mad-man

Charlie Oakman

Engineer par excellence


Fast Berk from Fast Bikes He’s the first to admit that he’s not the most technically minded, but it’s fair to say he delivered on his promise: to sort and race a TZR250 Yam in the Yamaha Past Masters’ final round at Snetterton. In this issue he finally races the bike which means two things. One, he’s finished what he set out to do and second, he won’t be sneaking onto CMM’s server trying to see if we’ve ‘designed it right…’ Hee hee.

Pip Higham He’s moved!

This month – from Pip’s new place at t’back – he tells us just how much he misses his old S90. What exactly is that?

Robert Bee Ad contact

Big Bad Bob continues to be the main man to speak to if you want to advertise in this mighty organ!

Scott Redmond

Mark Haycock

John Mockett

Scottie floods our social media with nostalgia and this month he’s victim to his own: a little AR50 Kwak! Page 47.

Mark is scratching his head over his Honda CB750 K2’s front-end. He’s sorted some of your problems too on page 62.

A true legend: he’s the man behind the Sprocket cartoons and helped design some amazing bikes. More on him soon.

King of Nostalgia

Q&A King

Cartoonist but so much more! / 3

Contents 62

❙ Q&A





Mark Haycock and you with a page of tips. Ralph Ferrand sorts the head out. Scoop on the cranky side of specials.
















12 14








Allen muses on the joy of six! Scoop finally completes this labour of loathe.


❙ HONDA CB750 K2





Mark Haycock sorts the head bearings out. Make do and mend says Steve Cooper!


Scoop had to sort a buyer’s guide on his own bike!

110 ❙ SUZUKI GSX-R750 SRAD Scottie on his latest beige acquisition!

We celebrate Randy Mamola’s GP career. This month it’s how Zeds and Dukes do, plus ‘the class of 2018’. New kit, tools and tyres and stuff. We try stuff out.


Events, news and what’s occurring. WIN Bridgestone tyres for our star letter! WIN S-Doc cleaning kit and a Tamiya model bike! Charlie Oakman finally races the TZR250.

47 52 60

Honda’s homologated racer from the 80s.

Subscribe and save cash!

John Nutting rides a kit that could cost just £3k to build!


Scott Redmond on why you should follow your heart.


Steve Cooper rides Honda’s Super Hawk.


Kar Lee’s vision of an updated Yamaha SZR660.


What’s happening in the February CMM?


Pip recalls the awesome Honda S90… / 5

6 / classic motorcycle mechanics


It’s an oft-used phrase, but Randy Mamola was definitely the best rider never to win a 500cc world championship. From 1979 to 1992 Randy was in the thick of the action in Grand Prix, racing for the Suzuki, Honda, Yamaha and Cagiva factories. He would take 13 wins overall in his GP career and finish runner-up in the series four times, in 1980 – behind friend and later team manager Kenny Roberts, 1981, 1984 and 1987 behind Australia’s first 500cc champion Wayne Gardner. Towards the end of his career he helped develop the Cagiva 500cc two-stroke, staying with them for three years (1988-1990) following his controversial dropping from the Lucky Strike Yamaha team in 1987 after he had (once more)

been the bridesmaid. He sat out 1991 but returned for a swansong year with a Budweiserbacked Yamaha where he took a third in a damp race in Hungary. After retirement, Randy worked with the Marlboro Yamaha team and has been a race commentator and a leading light in the Riders for Health charity. He may never have taken the championship, but he was our champion. Famous for his rear-wheel steering style (especially on the tricky Pirellis used at first by the Cagiva team) almost falling off his Rothmans Honda (which has to be the most watched ‘crash’ video of all time) or just clowning around, Randy was our number one, whatever. cmm

■ Want to get hold of pictures from Mortons Archive? Then head to: / 7



Healthy investments Every month we take a look at the classic motorcycle market with a range of industry experts. This month, Paul Jayson from The Motorcycle Broker and our very own Scott Redmond look at the high and low end of the marketplace.


hatever the criticism about people using their classic motorcycles as an investment, there is not much that will match them for returns. I’ve been crunching the numbers and now have the figures from 2010 until 2017 and all of my predictions from 2013 have already come true. Ducati 916/996 SPs are becoming the Broughs of the future. They have been outperforming Broughs, since 2010, quite considerably. They’ve slowed a little, but prices won’t stay static for long, so now is a great time to buy. Bipostos have increased in value recently and will become collectible and rideable machines, even if finding a good one is difficult. The stand-out performer over the last two years has been Honda’s CB750 Sandcast, increasing 32% in 2016 and 80% in 2017! Other machines will follow suit. The Japanese and Italian marques have been hugely under-valued for a long time, in comparison to older British and American marques. Honda CBX1000s have increased at 13% and are very under-valued, so will follow the Sandcast’s lead. Kawasaki’s 1972 Z1 has always been ahead of the Sandcast in price and is lagging behind now. This shows that early, correct 1972 Zeds are going to increase in value and quite quickly as they have a lot of catching up to do. Also later die-cast CB750s are going to increase in value, as people who can’t afford a Sandcast will go for the cheaper alternative. Suzuki’s GS1000S, Wes Cooley Replica, has become very desirable and expensive in the US, so prices in the EU will increase accordingly. This will push up the prices of the standard GS range and

8 / classic motorcycle mechanics

Paul of www.the motorcyclebroker

Paul’s lovely Z1.

prohibitive prices will focus classic motorcycle riders on the overlooked Japanese superbikes. Yamaha’s XS1100 has been a forgotten classic for a long time and is now due the respect it deserves. I was a courier in London in the 1980s on one of these behemoths and they are fantastic bikes for long journeys, but finding a good one is hard. Clearly, there is a ticking time bomb in the cost of buying Italian and Japanese classic motorcycles and the prices we are seeing now will not be recognisable in five years’ time. Many say it is a bubble, like V12 E-Type Jags in the 1980s, but it is not. Firstly, the 1980s was driven by ignorance and the UK was not part of a global market. The internet has made trading global and if values fall in one country, then traders from another country just buy the cheaper motorcycles and the machines are exported. It’s been happening here since 2008 in the second-hand used motorcycle market. Many of our used bikes are being exported to mainland Europe where demand is higher than here. The price increases I have quoted only apply to the very best examples. We are not talking about auction site collections of nuts and bolts. The due diligence required on machines such as these is outside of the realms of a motorcyclist who has built their own motorcycles. It is also outside of the realms of (with all due respect) nearly all motorcycle dealers. There are very few machines of this standard in the market and only the very best achieve these prices. It took me two years to find my 1972 Kawasaki Z1 900 and I cannot stress how hard it is to find machines that are spot on. So the market is now separating. The cost of a proper Sandcast is far more than the cost of the machines available on internet auction sites and for good reason. They may look like the real deal but, when you dig deeper such machines will never achieve such high values. cmm


ere at CMM we like to keep our finger on the pulse of both established classics and emerging classics. Our rule of thumb is the ‘15 year rolling rule’ that the gods from the VJMC use in helping to define what can join their club. So, here’s a pick of the crop from the class of 2003. To get in the mood we need to remind ourselves what was happening within the motorcycle world 15 years ago. The two-stroke was all but dead; a few tiddlers still used the configuration but the heyday of screaming strokers had passed. MotoGP was also a year into the new four-stroke age, and that’s a decent place to start our homework. The Honda CBR600 got a top to toe makeover, becoming an RR model. The looks were very much MotoGP inspired, the under seat exhaust added weight but it also added kudos. That beefy swinging arm completed the race refugee looks. The RR-3 was a big seller, but where are they all now? Prices are pretty steady, budget at least £3500 for an original bike in showroom condition.

Honda weren’t the only ones to launch a new 600; Kawasaki had already stretched the boundaries of the class with their earlier ZX636 A1H, which wasn’t much more than a big bored ZX-6R J model. This was a top bike but suddenly was so last year (although it stayed in the range for 2003) when the ZX636 B1H broke cover. It had aggressive looks that harked back to those 1990s ZXRs and plenty of up to the minute technology including fuelinjection and radial front brake calipers. The press loved it and it still looks pretty damn sharp now. Prices are in line with the CBR600RR-3, budget £3k for a stunner, although the two bikes probably appeal to two very different owners. Suzuki concentrated on tweaking their GSX-R1000. The K3 model was wheeled out in 2003; there’s not too many of these out there that haven’t been drizzled in anodised tat and out of date race replica paint work. The standard blue and white bike looks gorgeous, topped off with a black frame it’s worth every penny of the £3000-£4000 price tag. Other than the Hinckleyy Speed p Triple p there are not too manyy Triumphs that get

people too nostalgic, but for value for money an ’03 Daytona 955i is hard to resist at only £1999. Retro bikes were heading in a new direction in 2003 and Kawasaki rolled out the Z1000A1H; a modern engine in a bike with an old name, oh hang on they’ve just done that again for 2018 with the Z900RS! The £6000 plus asking price was eye watering, but they’ve held their own in the market: expect to pay around £4000. In the Latin quarter the 749 and 999 models had opinions split, their looks have matured and are now very distinctive, with the outgoing 748 still available in 2003 buyers were spoilt for choice, but now the 749 is a bit of a bargain when compared to 748 prices. For under £4000 you have a pick of 749 models; add a couple of grand to that if you really want a late plate 748. If you want something that’s even more desirable why not bag a 999R? We found number 118 of the limited edition run for £12,995, further reading of the advert revealed the seller had lopped a whopping £2000 from its asking price, so maybe 15-year-old y classics aren’t creatingg the frenzy of older bikes, well not just yet! cmm / 9



The latest riding kit, top tools, tyres, retro clothing and more! MUC OFF HELMET CARE KIT


These two items are from HVC’s wide-range of top-quality kit targeting classic two-strokes. Parts such as this petrol cock and performance cylinder heads (both for the air-cooled RD series) are custom made at the firm’s facility in Lincoln, Nebraska. The heads alone apparently give the 250 an extra five bhp!


Keep your lid in tip-top condition with this care kit. It includes a can of Foam Fresh cleaner, a helmet visor and goggle cleaner, a can of Premium Anti-Fog Treatment and a micro-fibre cloth to keep your helmet clean and your visor clear whatever the season.



Heated kit just keeps getting better and this Keis Premium J501 Heated jacket looks the business. It is lighter and thinner than before so it can fit snugly under your main riding kit. Micro carbon fibre panels supply the heat evenly around the chest, kidneys, arms and collar. You’ve also got two external pockets and zipped pockets for the cables and controller. The current draw from the host bike’s battery is seven amps. Available in sizes 36-50 and for a short time the heat controller (£34.99) is included free.


10 / classic motorcycle mechanics




They ain’t daft, old Triumph. Since (should be Sir) John Bloor took over the name back in 1983, the marque has gone from strength to strength. In recent years it’s not only taken on and beaten the best bikes Japan can throw at it but also is really pushing its rich heritage in its clothing range. Prices vary, but the Byford Jacket here is a £350 RRP (we’ve seen it as low as £179.99) the ‘Ride it Dirty’ T-shirt is thirty nicker! Available in dealerships or online at:

ALPINESTARS WINTER GLOVES Three updated winter gloves from Alpinestars include the Patron Gore-Tex Glove (£169.99) sizes S through to 3XL, which apparently offer excellent winter dexterity, the Equinox Outdry Glove (£129.99) which offers excellent wind-proofing (S to 2XL) and the C-30 Drystar Glove (£84.99) which comes in black and black/camo colours, with knuckle protection and is available in sizes S-3XL. www oxfordproducts com


£84.99£169 99 £169.99



This is a pictorial look back through the years by the legendary Michael Scott. The book contains 192 pages with 190 colour and black and white pictures looking at the blue riband class of motorcycle racing from 1949 to 2017.

Not completely retro, but we like the cut of this lid’s jib! This is doubly certified as both a full-face and an open-face helmet and it features a swing-around chin bar which traverses through 180º. The helmet is manufactured from Kinetic Polymer Alloy and weighs only 1700g. You’ve also got an integral drop down sun visor. All the lining is removable and washable too… Sizes are XS-XXL (53-64cm.)



This is a versatile ratchet screwdriver, supplied with 20 screwdriver bits plus 9¼in drive sockets. From Laser Tools (part number 6992) is a robust 36-tooth ratchet screwdriver. You have additional storage for six bits in the handle, the standard (removable) shaft is 125mm long and incorporates a magnetic bit holder and is knurled for speedy rotation. Add the 75mm shaft extension and it becomes a long-reach screwdriver with 190mm shaft. Or use the 75mm shaft on its own, offering effectively three sizes of screwdriver in one. The comprehensive bit selection is: hex 3mm, 4mm, 5mm; Phillips: Ph0, Ph1, Ph2 x 2, Ph3; PzDrive: Pz1, Pz2, Star T10, T15, T20, T25, T30; flat 3mm, 4mm, 5mm, and 6mm x 2. The 9¼in drive sockets are 4mm, 5mm, 6mm, 7mm, 8mm, 9mm, 10mm, 11mm and 12mm.




Much more word-heavy (80,000 as opposed to 20,000) this is a full history of the 500cc/MotoGP class of Grand Prix racing over 256 pages. Includes 150 pictures and exclusive interviews with the likes of Casey Stoner, Valentino Rossi, John Surtees, Kenny Roberts and Nicky Hayden. / 11



Riding kit worn, tools twirled & tyres turned




Adding a visible security device to your bike may deter the lowlifes of this world, and fitting a Thatcham approved one will probably make them look elsewhere. Thus is the simple psychology of motorcycle security. With 12mm thick links it’ll take some getting through, ditto the locking hasp with is 11mm and well protected by the lock body. Covered by a bike-friendly material that’s secure at both ends, the chain comes in three lengths (1.2m, 1.5m and 2m) offering a wide range of options. It’s not light but that’s a small price to pay for peace of mind. Steve Cooper

CONTINENTAL SPORTATTACK3 TYRES The first thing that you will notice with these tyres is they aren’t shiny like new tyres usually are, this is due to the new tyre mould coating technology Continental employs which eliminates the need for tyre release agents, thus giving the end user a much quicker scrub-in time! When we fitted this set of ContiSportAttack3s to our Project TL1000S (my first ride out on the bike after the new tyres and suspension was fitted) went so smoothly I forgot within 10 miles or so that I was on new tyres, such was the feeling and feedback from them. It wasn’t even a particularly warm day either. You can’t really complain about a tyre that’s happy to go from zero



to hero blobs in such a short space of time, can you? Even being cackhanded and trying to provoke the big twin didn’t faze them! These tyres have now been on the TL for around a year and probably around a thousand miles or so. These have been a mix of track and road miles in varied conditions. Even in the wet the SportAttack3s have given no issues at all and feel at least as good as their competitors’ tyres that I’ve used on big bikes like my GSX-R1000K1. All in all, a great tyre that I wouldn’t hesitate in getting again. Andy Bolas

■ contisportattack-3 or visit


Fed up of restored bikes getting covered in dust when parked up? Treat yourself to one of these covers from Oxford Products. They’re made from Spandex material that fits snugly to the bike so there are no loose areas of cloth sagging or collecting rubbish. Even better, they come with a snap buckle that secures beneath the bike so the cover can’t billow when the wind blows into the garage. The elasticated bottom edge fits snugly around the lowest portions of the bike, helping to keep out dust. It’s breathable so your bike doesn’t get covered in condensation and is available in three colours and four sizes. It’s a great way to preserve your machine. Steve Cooper


12 / classic motorcycle mechanics




Classic Motorcycle Mechanics January 2018  

Classic Motorcycle Mechanics January 2018 Read more at:

Classic Motorcycle Mechanics January 2018  

Classic Motorcycle Mechanics January 2018 Read more at: