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Classic Motorcycle Mechanics

Classic Motorcycle Mechanics July 2019

Dedicated to the later classics and Japanese machines, Classic Motorcycle Mechanics has it all. Now 116 pages of road tests, rebuild guides, 'Street Specials' reviews and much much more... Staff Bikes - Classic Motorcycle Mechanics is the only magazine that "Buys its own bikes, rebuilds 'em and rides 'em".

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United Kingdom
Mortons Media Group, Ltd
$4.53(Incl. tax)
$49.81(Incl. tax)
12 Issues

in this issue

3 min.
turbo time and peaky blinders

There’s something so cool about the way a power delivery can brighten your day… This issue sees Jeff Ware get under the skin of the best of the 1980s Turbo bikes and it’s interesting to read the comparison of the types some 35 years or so after they first saw light of day. I recall my uncle – a mechanic for Dave Fox Kawasaki (now, sadly gone) – explaining how the GPz750 Turbo had the same performance as the GPz1100 and how it bucked out of control on him on a test ride when the turbo spooled up as he hit a bump on the A2… Fast forward 15 or so years and this was in my mind when I finally managed to have an hour on the 750T myself for…

2 min.
no admin fees

When you buy a classic motorcycle – whether it’s a minty fresh white 1980 Yamaha RD250LC or a seen-better-days Honda FireBlade in the timeless red, white and blue livery – choosing the right insurer is vital. The last thing you need when you’re anxiously stripping down your new pride and joy to see what horrendous bodges have been perpetrated against it by previous owners is to discover that your new insurer has tacked on a few little extra fees for‘administration’and ‘document handling’. It’s important to have confidence and trust in your insurer – that they are going to understand the giddy highs and (occasional) bolt-shearing, paintwork-ruining lows of owning a beautiful classic machine from an era when manufacturers and owners did things rather differently. They also need to understand that although you might…

1 min.
mick and the rzv

With this month’s test on the rare Yamaha RZV500R, we figured we’d show this as-rare shot from Mick Doohan’s own archive of the time he rode one. In the mid-1980s and with Mick’s riding raising a few eyebrows, the young Aussie hooked up with Jon MacGillvray, who owned a Yamaha RZV500 that he ended up putting Doohan on. The two would become firm friends and Jon would later become Mick’s manager. In 1985 they had a great idea: paint the bike in camouflage, make Mick ride in leathers with camo overalls on (‘I’d puff up like the Michelin man’) and erect a military-style tent where the team could hang out and enjoy some beers with a barbecue. A year later the camo was gone and instead the team got some backing and…

4 min.

Is the Japanese-market RZV500R – and other imports – less valuable than the home-market models? The RZ with its ‘hand-crafted’ aluminium frame, restricted motor, gold wheels and self-retracting sidestand, is the holy grail of road-going Yamaha two-strokes. Yes, there’s an irritating red light that confuses the rider when it comes on at 55mph, eliciting fears that your two-stroke oil tank has run dry, but this can easily be disarmed and the bike can be derestricted so you can enjoy the full (claimed) 90bhp. There are conflicting stories about how many of these particular 500 fours were produced, but it seems that fewer than 2000 ally-framed, Japanese-market machines left the factory, which makes them very rare and very desirable. The RD500 and RZV500 are derived from the track bikes that Yamaha pioneered in the…

4 min.
the latest riding kit, top tools, tyres, retro clothing and more!

ARAI PROFILE-V This is the new helmet from Japanese giant Arai. The company says it’s improved the fit and feel as well as the ability to get the lid on and off by opening up the bottom of the helmet, while still retaining a snug fit. The Profile-V comes with a wide-vision, F1-derived visor, ready for the Pinlock lens system (anti-fog – it works) and its PRO Shade System, which is a flip-up lockable sun peak: Arai claims this is a better solution than the internal sun visor system adopted by many of its contemporaries. The lining is semi-removable (which means top padding stays in place) and ear pockets are used for speakers. Nice. It’s also fully ventilated and comes in some pretty (but more expensive) colours. www.whyarai.co.uk MUC OFF PRESSURE WASHERS We’ve…

1 min.
riding kit ridden in, tools twirled & tyres tested

ERBAUER CORDLESS DRILL Seventy quid doesn’t seem to buy you much these days but this Erbauer brushless, cordless, 18-volt drill has to be a genuine Barry Bargain. Super light to use yet packed with power, it’s the business – whether you’re drilling out a broken stud on your bike, removing a screw head or taking off some old paint with a flap wheel. You get the drill, two batteries, a charger and a decent case. I’ve tried damn hard to kill it over the last year but have failed spectacularly so it comes highly recommended. Steve Cooper From £69.99: www.screwfix.com ERBAUER DRILL BITS Does 150 drill bits for less than 30 quid sound too cheap? Don’t let the price put you off. These Erbauer drill bits are amazing value and, crucially, stay sharp for ages,…