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Practical Sportsbikes April 2021

Practical Sportsbikes magazine is about buying, fixing, restoring and riding sportsbikes from the 1970s, ’80s and ’90s. Every issue of PS – the magazine home of new-wave Japanese and Italian classics – is packed with: - The most inspiring and ingenious reader restorations - The most in-depth road tests and buyers’ guides - Unmissable workshop tips and how-to features Practical Sportsbikes gets under the skin of the bikes that really matter to our readers and explains how best to maintain, rebuild and enjoy them. So if you’re in to sportsbikes from the 1970-1990s, PS is essential reading.

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United Kingdom
12 Issues

in this issue

2 min

‘Man cave’ is often used to describe our sheds, garages and workshops where our bikes are built, stored and appreciated. But I think that underplays it: a cave is a primitive dwelling for primeval beings, happened across, and utilised in a basic way. A workshop is way more than that. Simple buildings become extensions of our personalities: the organisation (or lack of it) and the artifacts within lay our characters bare. They become special places to perform what some might consider mundane tasks. But we know better: working on your own bike, whether it’s routine adjustments or a frame-up build, can elevate you to a state of inner peace and relaxation, enrich your self-esteem with the satisfaction of a job well done, and – if you’re from the north – save you…

1 min
absolute tools

Damian Smith Art Editor Once tried to remove a belly-pan fastener from the Thundercat. Failed. Banned from the PS toolkit since. damian.smith@pspb.co.uk Mark Graham Production Editor Doesn’t like his tools being touched. Woe betide anyone who misplaces his 13mm ring-spanner. mark.graham@pspb.co.uk Alan Seeley Technical Editor Need a Ducati belt tensioner tool? Moto Morini flywheel puller? Al isn’t your man: he has them, but locating them across three lock-ups is impossible. alan.seeley@pspb.co.uk Gary Hurd Workshop Consultant Keeps his index fingernails filed to the inlet/exhaust clearances of a GSX1100 motor, just in case. editorial@pspb.co.uk facebook.com/groups/practicalsportsbikes editorial@pspb.co.uk…

2 min
buell are back

Pay attention, this is mildly confusing. Harley-Davidson have sold the Buell brand they shut down in 2009. It was started by Erik Buell in 1983, who sold 49% of the company to H-D in 1993, then the other 51% by 2003. The new buyer is Erik Buell Racing, but without Erik (EBR was started by Erik in late ’09 to continue development of the bikes he’d designed). EBR now plans to have 10 models on sale by 2024, starting with updates of the 1190cc V-twin sportsbikes on sale when the company was last trading. EBR is owned by Liquid Asset Partners (CEO, one Bill Melvin) – the same firm (and man) who were brought in to dissolve the Buell Motorcycle Company for Harley, and then EBR when the initial effort by…

2 min
bikes reunited

Our inbox pinged once again with pleas to trace your bikes long since sold and lately lamented. A service we offer for free (just as well, given the infrequent successes), and one we are glad to offer to anyone simply curious about an old bike, or actively motivated to repurchase. Just send us some details (registration and pictures are a must) to editorial@pspb.co.uk – do also get in contact if you’d like to pass on any info about a bike seen here, too. And let us know if it’s OK to share your details or not, with GDPR and that to think about. Steve Downes’s Honda VFR800 (S1 VFR) “I owned number one (of 50) VFR800 50th Anniversary editions, and as a special present for my 50th birthday I bought myself the corresponding…

3 min
specials we like

AC SANCTUARY ZRX1200 RCM-528 We all know Japanese specials masters AC Sanctuary can turn out a magnificent makeover of any 1970s-80s big four. If this ZRX1200R is anything to go by AC-S can also work their magic on 21st century retros. Like this Japan only 2008-2016 fuel-injected, six-speeder. Up-specing a modern retro is a wholly different proposition to working with an older machine. For starters, the stock wheels, tyres, brakes and suspension are already up to date – in the case of the ZRX that equates to 120/180 section rubber, 310mm front discs, six-pot calipers, fully adjustable 43mm teles and piggyback shocks. That AC have made this Kwak considerably more mouth-watering is testament to their unrivalled skills. Enjoy. ⋆ FRONT END Sculpture billet yokes hold 43mm Öhlins usd EXM forks (£3500 a pop…) with a…

1 min
thirsty tdr is still the way to go for kicks

The fantastic story about Kez Scott’s TDR250 in this month’s magazine prompted me to write to you about my own experiences with this amazing bike. I am now in my mid-60s, raced RD350s in my youth, still do a lot of track days, and have owned close to 100 bikes, and the most fun of all of them was my TDR250. Back around 1989 I swapped from a Suzuki GSX1100 EFE onto the TDR and never had any regrets about it. Living in Glasgow my friend Paul drove me to Perthshire in his Rover V8 3500 to pick up my TDR, I filled the fuel tank and raced home at high speed enjoying being back on a two-stroke. Close to home the TDR went onto reserve so I pulled in to…