Our window bike for March is a beautifully restored 1981 Yamaha Rd 350 LC owned by Chris Chown.
Chris, after always having an affinity for two-stroke motorcycles and having regretfully sold his recently restored RZ500. He knew he needed to get back into the two-stroke saddle. After acquiring two RD's from around Ontario, Chris set out on the 2 year project that was building a completely restored RD 350 LC. Lucky for Chris, at the time of his restoration, many NOS parts were still available from Yamaha Canada.
Chris is quick to point out the help he received: Peter Volk at 109 Cycle rebuilt the motor using a new crankshaft from Yamaha. Paint was done by BK Custom Coatings in Brantford. Polishing and plating by Mayfair. All fasteners were changed to stainless manufactured by Phil Denton Engineering in the UK.
The 1981 RD350 LC is a monoshock, liquid-cooled example of 80's race-wise technology trickling down to the street. A bike famous for its unique torque curve. Below 6000 rpm it is hardly powerful enough to pull the wings off of a fruit fly. However, once past 7500 rpm, port timing, exhaust tuning and carburetion suddenly come together and throw the bike forward. An intentional tuning characteristic according to Yamaha, a street bike designed to give all of its power at once, like a race bike.
This model was not sold in the USA as 2 strokes for the road were banned in 1979, the last being the RD400. With an amazing power to weight ratio and a light switch power band, an LC always brings a big grin to the rider. A cult classic in the UK and Australia. Sold for two years and replaced with the power valve equipped RZ 350.