Yamaha RD250 / 350The R-5, 350, RD 250 and 350 Series were Yamaha's blazing (at the time) street legal, 2 cycle versions of the all conquering TZ250. In fact, a TZ engine will drop right into an RD frame.
Bronze Bushings were usually used,
because "YOU CANNOT" (according to "them") use stock bushings. But, I do remember using the stock phenolic bushings, also shimmed up to
eliminate all excess sideplay. Shims are available through Yamaha.
I think that the reality was that bronze s/a bushings were better than worn out and unshimmed phenolic (plastic) bushings Legal
Other famous cheats:
Pat E. - Drove around in the old, rust-rotted,
widened Cycle World van, sponsored by magazine editor, J.U. Rode a CB400 Hawk. Whined
about everybody else who rode RDs and how badly they all cheated.
He was one of the best diversionary cheats. He used a standard wire
disc braked front wheel from a "different model", so he could run a wider,
lighter front wheel and a disc brake. Nobody figured it out till the
bike had been retired. The original Hawk came with a disc braked Comstar wheel OR a drum braked wire spoked wheel - but NEVER a wire
spoked, disc braked wheel! Gee, we were fooled by those guys! I
think, maybe it was a dohc wheel hub.
He was the only person who ever protested me and won. That was for using a front stainless steel brake line. The whole story was that it was a local race, I went early to the shop on Sunday, loaded the bike into the back of my 63 Chevy pickup or "ute". As I left the parking lot I looked back in the rearview mirror and saw my front brake line damaged from a fall that occurred during the last race weekend. I turned around and put the only brake line that we had that would fit and I wouldn't get fired for using (I'd get fired for stripping a new bike)! It happened to be a stainless line from he parts department. I took a chance as far as a possible protest, and well, got caught. Could have won the championship that year if not for that. Oh well!
"D." - Ran around and protested anybody and
everybody he could. It seemed like he did it every race. Probably just
my memories of the late 70's, early 80's - but not too far off. Was the
same guy who grabbed my right knee with his left hand and started to
pull himself past me on the slightly left hand straight to the finish
line. He let go when he saw a right foot raise up and place itself
menacingly in front of his faceshield (very flexible when I was younger!). Of course, when he was pulling on
my knee, it was behind a wall, not in view of anybody. When I raised my
leg to threaten, well, naturally, it was as the wall ended and EVERYBODY
at the finish line watched as I "kicked off the challenge by D.
A" and took the win. Would I ever kick another rider to cause
injury? Not really.
Got D. back though a couple of times - once, ran the TZ fender during a race. Lighter and more rigid than my braced R5 front fender, though it didn't decrease lap times. At the end of the race, I pulled into the pits and Deborah and I unscrewed the 4 6mm bolts in a frenzy, grabbed the TZ fender, opened the hood of the 63 Chevy and threw it into the engine compartment and slammed the hood shut. On went the heavy, braced R5 fender. A minute later, D. stomps over and looks at my bike. He looked puzzled. He says, "I thought that you were using a different front fender." I said "Oh". He stared a bit longer and walked away.
The other time was that, the kickstarter , which according to the rulebook, "may not be removed" had folded out in front of my shin in practice and was in the way in general otherwise. I took it off and zip tied it under the engine. The rulebook said you couldn't "remove" it, it didn't say you couldn't "move" it. So, after the race, D. comes over, as usual, to look at every competitor's bike. He inspects the bike and asks why I removed my kickstarter. I think I told him to just go away. 10 minutes later, D., Bill Ralston (the Race Director), and the small horde of protest monger voyeurs comes over and surrounds the bike. Bill says "D., here says you removed your kick starter." "No, I didn't - don't you see it?" "No." I got out of my chair, went over to the bike and leaned it over a little bit - "See it, now?" "No." Leaned the bike over a bit more, "See it?" "No". A bit more and Bill sees it attached under the engine. "Hmmm" he says. I tell him that the rulebook says that you can't "remove" it - it doesn't say you can't "move" it. He opens the rulebook and reads the book to himself. Without a pause, he turns to D., says "Sorry, D." with a chuckle and walked away. Leaving D. standing there.
As far as extra legal stuff in this production class - the top guys in the class policed themselves (between themselves). We pretty much did the same things to our bikes to keep the rider skill in the top 3, the most deciding factor. I can't think of any thing that any one of the RD guys did that was a clear cut, race winning change. It still all came down to what happened on the last lap in traffic - who got lucky and who got "skunked" in traffic. Gennady Liubimsky and I split wins at about a 50/50 ratio. At this time, D. wasn't a potential winner - though, later, D. went as quick as we did, maybe even quicker, and won a fair amount of production races. But, later, I do remember him getting protested in a different class for a ported motor or something similar and losing.
So if you think nobodies cheating.... be sure, be careful and be RIGHT when you protest!!!
Submitted by C. Grebsivlas
|TL-float height gauge||The only way to accurately measure float heights. Works on nearly every carburetor.||recommended
RD Dreams - India
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|The extension of the laboratory
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Edited to the tunes of Chemical Residue by Herbie Hancock.
Maybe in next rewrite, he'll fix the ignition timing and dyno chapters...
Otherwise great book with great starting ideas.
The little blue bible for quick references and little known facts.