Photos from Steve Harvey's post — Yamaha RZ500 Australia


Ok guys, I have some paint and panel questions and I'm hoping the knowledge in this group can sort me out..

This is what I have,

Australian delivered 53G prefix,

Yamaha 47X markings on the undersides of all panels,

I can see,

solid white base, solid red speed ladders over the top with definite stencil line.

Blue line decal incorporating white line up to the red ladders. (Except on belly pan, only blue line)

No clear coat on anything except the fuel tank.

Any advise most appreciated.

To me this appears to be original paintwork but I'm no expert

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Gents — Yamaha RZ500 Australia


As you might know my hobby is restoring back to factory standard, the one thing that really annoys me is the lack of electro platters that understand how passionate (or anal) we get bringing our project up to factory specification. At last I have found an electro platter that shares our passion, I took the time to go and see him yesterday and was really impressed by his premises and his attitude, he showed me some of his work and I was blown away, perfect finish to show standard. After talking to him for a while he confirmed that he could electro plate drab olive green and black, these are the two colour I can’t get refinished here and had actually looked at sending some parts to the UK to obtain the required finish. I feel it only right to support this fella as he is a one man shop, I will post some before and after picture when I collect my parts but please feel free to call him, mention that you have read this post. His name is Rick and his number is 0413826092 or

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    Photos from Damian Lory's post — Yamaha RZ500 Australia


    Sorry I have been a bit quiet about this as I can't believe it really yet!

    Picked up my RZV a week ago.

    I raced one when I was a nipper so to have one now again is amazing. Should say I had a RZ only but never the less.

    Extremely honest bike. Could do with some plastic repairs and paint etc but mechanically very sound. I think it may be still restricted so any advice would be appreciated. In time I will be looking for a set of after market race pipes. But for now up to Mt Glorious!

    Cheers. DL.

    Is thanks to Craig Bullen for phone support!

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      Just been for a proper ride in the hills on the RZV and all the new parts brake... — Yamaha RZ500 Australia

      Just been for a proper ride in the hills on the RZV and all the new parts , brake lines, pads, fork springs, tyres made a massive difference. It's like a new bike. I'm totally blown away how good they are to ride and you can ride them real fast without worrying that it's gonna get away from you.

      Just love it and definitely a forever keeper and that's saying something for me !!

      She's a thirsty old girl tho haha!!

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        Photos from Richard Morrison's post — Yamaha RZ500 Australia

        What'll it do mister? More than 180kph son! Just spent an inordinate amount of time converting a FZ750 240kph speedo into a RZV500 speedo (which just meant adjusting the kms to match and swapping the needles over - sounds easy, takes ages!). Also swapped the rev counter for a RZ250 unit which doesn't have the speed warning and replaced the cracked temp/gauge glass. Job done.

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          So Richard Morrison I d put that 14 tooth front onto your as fast as poss mate... — Yamaha RZ500 Australia

          So Richard Morrison I'd put that 14 tooth front onto your as fast as poss mate as it's a bloody hoot with it on. Makes loads of difference. Much easier to keep in the powerband especially for road riding. If I was on a track then 15 would be fine. Also definitely getting rid of these hideous (ATV like) Pirelli Demon tyres. Just took in on a twisty run and lost the back end twice which was enough to turn round get home and order two new Avon Roadriders... it's stinking hot out here as well so u'd expect em to be nice n sticky but they feel soapy. Probly just old although they look brand new.

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            Hi all — Yamaha RZ500 Australia

            Hi all,

            I have a huge problem with my RZV500. On Sunday, I hit an oil slick, and dropped it on the right side. There is some fairing damage, two blinkers are damaged, the side panel, and lower fairing is damaged, the rear faring is c, the exhaust pipe is scratched and damaged ,and the right case is cracked.

            The bike is insured, and a claim has been lodged, however I now need a repair quote.

            Does anyone have reccomendations for this? I am in Wagga Wagga NSW, transport to a repairer is not an issue, that is covered on the policy.

            All advice gratefully recieved.

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              Just been for a proper 120k blat in the hinterland to give the old girl a... — Yamaha RZ500 Australia

              Just been for a proper 120k blat in the hinterland to give the old girl a proper clean out. Sht loads of fun but also pointed out a few things that need sorting.

              Suffered brake fade so will totall overhaul all calipers and pads (any suggestions for pads, I don't really care about price as I never scrimp on them !)

              Also forks bottomed out on hard(ish) braking and dodgy road surface. I'm guessing a fork service will help but I'd like to hear from people that have swapped springs or upgraded originals to make them more efficient.

              Apart from getting roasted arse cheeks it was an awesome machine to ride.

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                Rego today yea yea I know the plate is the wrong year but it s a spare until... — Yamaha RZ500 Australia

                Rego today!! ( yea yea I know the plate is the wrong year but it's a spare until the new one's here)

                First ride and it's pretty hair raising but shit loads of fun.

                Rear end flicked out as it hit the PB going round a bend.. woohoo. Feisty one :-)

                I read the first gear is a little long and high which I agree with. And not needing it's top end living in "watch ur speed or u will go to jail" Australia has anyone got different ratio to standard that they are using that works nicely. I'll change chain and sprockets anyway as always with a new bike !

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                  OK so the RZV turned up today but the needle valves are buggered as it started... — Yamaha RZ500 Australia

                  OK so the RZV turned up today but the needle valves are buggered as it started to piss out fuel which of course i'm not happy about but fairly standard with a 2T thats not been used much recently. Also i read the emulsion tubes need changing from 10 holes to 14 holes (RD500) to totally unrestrict it (apart from pipes which have already been changed).

                  Anyone have the Mikuni part numbers for the needle valves (and emulsifying tubes) or are they the same valves as on other LCs?

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                    Photos from Steve Street's post — Yamaha RZ500 Australia

                    McCoy Red Bull Replica RZ500

                    Owner: Mick Costin, Sydney, Australia


                    < p>Engine

                    RZ500 500cc, V-4, 2-stroke, rebuilt with standard Yamaha parts

                    Micoproducts titanium expansion chambers

                    Micoproducts titanium/carbon silencers

                    Porting - Standard

                    Carbs - Standard with heavy re-jetting

                    Filters - Mad Beaver


                    Frame - Micoproducts YZR500 style frame

                    Micoproducts YZR500 style rear sets

                    Micoproducts sub-frame

                    Micoproducts suspension linkages

                    Micoproducts ride height adjuster

                    Micoproducts front & rear brake caliper mounts

                    2006 Yamaha R6 swingarm

                    OHLINS TZ shock

                    Yamaha R1 forks & triple clamps

                    Brembo front & rear wheels

                    Brembo 320mm front & 210mm rear discs

                    Brembo radial master cylinder

                    Yamaha R6 radiator

                    Domino GP throttle

                    1999 YZR500 fairing & screen

                    1999 YZR500 seat

                    1999 YZR500 tank


                    Micoproducts 'black box' modular electrical system

                    Stack Tacho

                    YEC digital temp gauge

                    2D lap timing system

                    Micoproducts carbon dash & foam tacho surround

                    Micoproducts YZR500 style ignition system

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                      Photos from Steve Street's post — Yamaha RZ500 Australia

                      Wolf in Stock RZV500R Clothing

                      Owner: Nick Gargano, L.A., California, USA

                      My goal was to build a stock-appearing RZV at first glance, then upon closer inspection you would notice all the different modifications I've done to the bike.



                      Stock RZV 500cc, V-4, 2-stroke

                      Air filter is a Unifilter in stock air box

                      Stainless-steel Lomas pipes


                      Stock RZV frame

                      Honda Hawk 650 swingarm with Galfer brake line routed into the swingarm

                      Custom brake stay made from aluminum

                      Marchesini rear wheel, 5.5 x 17

                      Marvic front wheel, 3.5 x 17

                      1992 FZR1000 front end with Sunstar rotors and Galfer brake lines

                      Custom machined bar ends

                      Works Performance rear shock

                      Under seat oil tank

                      Stainless allen bolts throughout the chassis

                      Rear panels cut to the bottom of the blue stripe

                      Custom rear tail light

                      Gearing: 15 front and 40 rear

                      Special thanks go to my good friend Oka-san (K. Okamoto) in Japan for all his help and patience in finding me all the parts I needed. RGV Steve in Florida for all of his great custom work. Mark Rosenfeld for his assistance and use of his facilities. Karl at for parts and great service. Most of the detail painting and polishing work done by myself.

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                        Photos from Steve Street's post — Yamaha RZ500 Australia

                        Show-Stopping RD500LC

                        Owner: Wolfgang Hromada, Vienna, Austria



                        500cc, V-4, 2-stroke

                        Engine tuning by ATR

                        28mm MIKUNI Flatslides

                        Single pod filters, either UNIFILTER or K&N

                        Modified Jolly Moto GP-pipes, aluminum-coated

                        TZ250 carbon silencers

                        ZX7R radiator


                        Frame - stock steel frame braced, custom bolt-on subrame

                        APRILIA RS250 swingarm

                        OHLINS front end and rear shock

                        BREMBO Racing components from DUCATI 996R

                        Front 120/60-17 on 3.5x17" DUCATI 996 wheel

                        Rear 180/55-17 on 6.0x17" HONDA CBR900RR wheel

                        Stock tank with relocated carbon fuel cap

                        Carbon bodywork from 1991 YZR500, modified with dual headlight

                        Paint scheme and decals from 1991 Team MARLBORO YAMAHA (Wayne Rainey)

                        SPA Tacho with integrated digital speedometer

                        Stopwatch function for acceleration, etc., menu control by start button on RH switch

                        Analog RACETECH water temp

                        LED rear light by owner

                        Gel battery 1.8Ah

                        CDI, YPVS Servo and controller relocated, complete new wire harness

                        Many thanks for all who helped me with parts, advice and motivation! When I first visited the RZ/RD 500 website 3 or 4 years ago, I immediately fell in love with Yamaha's 500 and I bought 2 RD500s that same summer. One is now completely restored to mint stock condition, the other one is displayed here. I can now say that I have breathed new life into two almost dead RZ/RD 500s!

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                          Photos from Steve Street's post — Yamaha RZ500 Australia

                          Marlboro RZ500

                          Owner: Sig Emerson, Brendham, Texas

                          Following are details of my project RZ500. I always dreamed about the Yamaha GP-replica two-strokes in the '80s while riding the Angeles Crest Hwy outside L.A. and never thought you could come so close. Today, at age 45, I'm taken back to the good old days. Long live the two-stroke GP-replica for its amazing power and unquestionable beauty. I currently have a second one in the works that I'm collecting parts for. I'm also thinking about running this at Bonneville with different gearing just for the fun of it!

                          Special thanks go to Wyn Belorusky, whose bike I first saw on the RZ/RD 500 Owners Group web site and freaked out over it. I must have bugged the crap out of him, calling so much for information. Also, thanks to my in-house machinist, Kevin Goddard, who was fast to help with the steering stem conversion. Shawn McKnight at did the graphix.



                          R1 front end with modified RZ500 steering stem

                          Modified upper triple clamp

                          R1 brakes (front and rear)

                          R1 17-inch, 3.5 front rim with Dunlop D208 120/70x17 tire

                          R1 6-inch rear rim with Dunlop D208 180/55x17 tire

                          JMC swingarm

                          Custom bracket made to hold R1 rear caliper

                          Custom sprockets by Sprocket Specialists

                          DID 520 chain conversion


                          1985 RZ 500 with 1GE ignition box

                          Custom made oil tank

                          Jolly Moto GP style exhaust

                          Have plans of adding Mikuni TM28 flatslide carbs with K&N filters


                          Yamaha YZR 1991 front fairing by Wyn Belorusky

                          1990 tailsection by Airtech

                          All fitting, frame mods, painting, motor prep and tuning by owner

                          Custom taillights by owner

                          Rearset footpeg brackets by Wyn Belorusky with R1 controls and footpegs

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                            Photos from Steve Street's post — Yamaha RZ500 Australia

                            1985 RZ500 - NAKED!

                            Owner: George Nolan, Indianapolis, IN USA

                            I acquired this RZ500 in 1991. It is a very early model, serial number 128 (101 was the first production model). Unfortunately, it was in poor condition when I got it. The bodywork was in tatters, the tires were bald, and it was filthy. It even had bondo covering dents in the lower exhaust pipes! During the next few months I did a clean-up and overhaul, including new pistons & rings (the cylinder bores were still within spec), Nikon exhaust pipes and Airtech seat and fairing. After this rebuild, I rode the bike for a couple of years. However, I wasn't happy with the looks of the bike. I've always liked looking at the mechanical bits on motorcycles, but the full fairing covered up all of the neat parts.

                            I disassembled the bike again, and made plans for the next iteration. I've always admired the style of the Ducati Monster, which blends road racer performance with a naked bike look. I decided that was what I wanted the RZ to look like. Merely removing the fairing didn't cut it, there were too many things bolted to the frame and buried beneath the fairing that needed attention.

                            I started by relocating the electrical parts (power valve control, CDI box, ignition coils and rectifier/regulator) onto a plate mounted under the tank, in the area where the airbox originally was. I used Wyn Belarusky's air filter kit to eliminate the stock airbox components (I designed and CNC machined new outer covers, since they were so visible). On the bottom side of the plate are the ignition switch, choke lever, fuel petcock and the horn. Brackets were welded onto the frame for the oil tank, electrical panel, and rear bodywork. All of the unused brackets were removed, and unused mounting holes were welded shut. An aluminium oil tank was fabricated to fit under the seat, between the top pipes (it holds 1.5 quarts of Motul 600 2T oil). I also made a small battery box for the 12v 1.3A battery.

                            he stock RZ swingarm has an aluminium brace welded to it, along with a bracket for the rear caliper. The brace provides a convenient mount for a carbon fiber Suzuki GSXR750 hugger fender (Carbon Works). The rear wheel is from a Suzuki GSXR 1000, tire is a Michelin Pilot Sport, 180-55 ZR 17. The wheel and sprocket carrier were machined to correct the sprocket alignment. I converted to a 520 chain, to save a little weight. The rear sprocket is 42 teeth, the front is 16. With the change in wheel circumference, this combination is very close to stock gearing. (Sprocket Specialities).

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                              Photos from Steve Street's post — Yamaha RZ500 Australia

                              Race-Ready RD500LC

                              Owner: Giuseppe Natalini, Rome, Italy

                              I started to update my '85 RD500 many years ago, and at the time I didn't have an end target in mind. The sportbikes available in the market at that time were big, heavy, ugly and "four-stroke." I was looking for something "special," a 500GP replica two-stroke!

                              After tons of early modifications, two years ago I finally understood (better late than never) the best way to build up my RD500 was to have a clear target in mind. And that target was: just enough engine power to not compromise reliability but still have plenty of bottom and middle rpm thrust. Ultimate handling, and lightness as much as possible, too.

                              I use my RD on racetracks only. Everyone who has tried their street motorcycle on a racetrack knows that's a hard test for a bike. Everything must work at 100% - engine, carburetion, gears and suspension. Well, after finishing my project, I can say only one thing about my bike - this machine is absolutely wonderful!


                              500cc, V-4, 2-stroke

                              Pistons are shorter than standard, and reshaped to have the same weight on each cylinder. Using TZR125 pistons

                              Exhaust ports measure 37mm in diameter, worked at the limit of the YPVS valve, instead of std 32mm

                              Reed valves reshaped and measure 37 x 37mm, worked inside for 16+3 mm, instead of std 30 x 37.5 mm. Fiberglass reeds are by Aktive

                              Removed friction gears from both sides of crank, and removed autolube pump

                              Std 26mm Mikuni carbs, now with adjustable main air jet

                              Using standard air box with modifications inside and UNI filter

                              Special Jolly Moto pipes, carbon fiber silencers


                              USD Kayaba forks with internal damping modifications and Ohlins springs. Ohlins rear shock

                              Marchesini magnesium 3.50 x 17 front with 110/70 x 17 race compound PIRELLI SUPERCORSA SC1 tire. Marchesini 5.50 x 17 rear with 180/55 x 17 race compound PIRELLI SUPERCORSA SC2 tire

                              Brembo gold series 320mm discs with double piston calipers, and Nissin pump. Rear brake Brembo gold series 220mm

                              38/15 final drive gearing. DID 520 Pro Lightweight O-Ring chain with Ergal rear sprocket

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                                Photos from Steve Street's post — Yamaha RZ500 Australia

                                '91 Rainey Replica RZ500

                                Owner: Mike Cichetti, Huntingdon Valley, PA USA

                                This bike is dedicated to all of us who think that valves are for toilets, and love the sight of blue smoke.

                                I'd like to give special thanks on this project to BJ MacDonald, who is responsible for this machine. He created a true street-going replica of the 1991 World Championship bike. The attention to detail is phenomenal, and I couldn't be more pleased. Without his genius and hard work none of this would have been possible.

                                Other who helped make this project a reality include Wyn Belorusky, who made all the brackets, silencers, created the kick stand and supplied the body work and a ton of encouragement and sage advice. Lee Buzelek, who supplied the donor machine, all the guys at the BikeWorks in Glenside, and of course to my lovely wife Lynne, who puts up with my lunacy and can scare BJ.

                                We don't need no stinking valves...!


                                Frame: Spondon, aluminum

                                Swingarm: Spondon, gull arm

                                Front End: 1993 GSXR 750

                                Shock: Ohlins

                                Wheels: Marchesini Magnesium 3.5" front, 6" rear

                                Tires: Dunlop D207

                                Bodywork: 1991 YZR 500, carbon fiber

                                Engine: by BJ MacDonald, featuring 4 upper cylinders

                                Pipes: Custom, by BJ MacDonald

                                Silencers: Carbon Fiber, by Wyn Belorusky

                                Carburetors: Mikuni 28mm flat slides mounted in the V

                                Radiator: GSXR 750

                                Steering Damper: Toby, with custom brackets by Wyn Belorusky

                                Chain: 520 Regina

                                Front Brakes: Tokicko 6 piston

                                Rear Brake: Brembo

                                Brake Lines: Russell steel braided

                                Fasteners: Titanium or aluminum

                                Instruments: Spa tachometer, Daytona temperature gauge

                                Side Stand: by Wyn Belorusky

                                Paint Scheme: 1991 Wayne Rainey Marlboro Yamaha

                                Paint: Taped by BJ MacDonald, shot by Leydon Restoration

                                Graphics: TapeWorks

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                                  Spondon F1 Yamaha RD500 — Yamaha RZ500 Australia

                                  Spondon F1 Yamaha RD500

                                  Ex Brian Reid Yamaha 500 V4 F1 Spondon Racer.

                                  This machine was built especially for the F1 world championship in 1985, it had taken months of preparation & some £25,000 in funds to get this machine ready in time for the IOM TT races, but going to the TT races in a fishing boat ended in disaster as the boat the Tornamona Lass skippered by Archie Lappin and with Joey & Robert Dunlop as passengers, foundered on rocks and this machine along with some others sank to the bottom of the sea, the machine was brand new and had not even raced yet.

                                  The machine was eventually recovered rebuilt and prepared for the TT races, Brian lapped the circuit at 107.05mph on the first lap of the F1 race but later retired at Hanley’s when the carburetor blew off. The frame is a Spondon beam, the engine was built by Arnie Fletcher and Robin Church from Len Manchester Motorcycles, the engine in 1985 was giving out 150Bhp on the test bench, timing 1mm BTDC, short reach plugs fitted, 280 main jets, 35º squish, piston clearance 2.6 thou. Brian Reid was able to pass a TZ750 Yamaha easy at the UGP. The wheels are special 16" Dymag items, and the exhausts are Len Manchester made,the ignition is Hitachi TZ500, the forks were changed some time during 85 from Spondon to RG500.

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                                    Twenty years ago the legendary Giacomo Agostini and his then unconventional... — Yamaha RZ500 Australia

                                    Twenty years ago, the legendary Giacomo Agostini and his then-unconventional "gill-valved," water-cooled Yamaha YZR500 two-stroke dethroned the mighty MV-Agusta Gran Prix juggernaut, ending MV's unprecedented 17-year win streak. Several years later Kenny Roberts gave the marque three consecutive GP titles, and fans around the world dreamt of what riding a 500cc Yamaha racebike would be like.

                                    Skip forward to 1984, and Yamaha brought the dream one step closer to reality when they introduced the 500cc V-Four RZ500.

                                    Inspired by the YZR500 factory racer ridden by Roberts during the 1983 GP season, the twin-crank V4 was the closest thing to a Gran Prix bike (with lights) that you could get your hands on. From it's GP-style full fairing to the water-cooled, four-cylinder two-stroke engine nestled in a perimeter-style box section frame, the RZ500 was a dream-come-true for race enthusiasts world wide, and naturally, it became a highly lusted-after machine.

                                    Problem was, due to Environmental Protection Agency anti-pollution mandates, the RZ500 was never sold in the United States (at least not legally), but you can bet a few regulations didn't stop enterprising two-stroke lovers from jumping on the contraband express and importing an RZ or four.

                                    Three different versions of the red and white bike were available worldwide. The RZ500, which came equipped with Yokohama OEM tires, was sold in Australia, New Zealand and Canada. Its European counterpart, the RD500LC , while mechanically identical, sported Michelin tires and a different paint scheme (photo at right). Japan received a limited-edition RZV500R, replete with a lighter aluminum frame (the others used steel) and other trick goodies, but a lso suffered from a de-tuned engine.

                                    Kenny Roberts' 1983 OW-70 GP bike used a very unique 50-degree, twin crank V-four motor equipped with Yamaha's YPVS exhaust power valves, and this same basic design configuration was shared by the RZ: With it's twin cranks, the engine actually functions as a pair of 180-degree parallel twins geared together. Both Roberts' YZR and the RZ500/RD500LCs had removable cassette-style six-speed gearboxes. But this is where the similarities end.

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                                      Photos from Richard Morrison's post — Yamaha RZ500 Australia


                                      One of the RZV's I considered when looking for one earlier in the year. Looked ok in the pics (bike was still in Japan at the time) but had a bit of fairing damage & crazed paint up close and a few other things that put me off. Didn't stop it selling for $15k once it got to Oz.

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