CHARLIE YAMAHA YZF-R6
THIS MONTH I HAVE MOSTLY BEEN… “Putting on the mileage and losing the kgs.”
Alot of time in the seat this month, notching up a third of my overall mileage with a couple of back to back long hauls over a four day period. At least on an R6 they felt like long hauls – a larger machine would have undoubtedly been a little easier on me physically.
Now don’t get me wrong, criticising the R6 for not being comfortable doing what it is not designed to do is laughable. But the fact remains that I like losing myself in mileage, luggaged up and on the road though this time Kriega’s US30 Tailpack and R35 backpack combination made cockpit space even more limited. It pushed me forward and added a weight on my wrists that became problematic after a sustained period. Maybe it’s my age?
Fortunately though, the little six is soon to be used for what it is designed for: sprinting as opposed to marathon running and I have been prepping it for this very thing. Yamaha were very mindful of weight when designing the 2017 incarnation of the R6, saving 1.2kg with a magnesium sub-frame, a further 1.2kg saved replacing the steel tank with aluminium and even using smaller magnets on the generator aiding the motor to spin up faster. With all of these evolutions the bike still came in marginally heavier than the 2008 model, yep that will be the Euro 4 cat effect.
So yes, changing the exhaust system is a natural way to trim down the old girl, unfortunately the Arrow system that was teed up for me from B&C Express had to go to a race team so I need to wait a little longer. However, a set of Dymag’s CA5 Carbon Fibre wheels have arrived, and what a sexy addition they are too. Now you are looking at a layout of some £2,580 (incl VAT) for a set of these, so my ‘keeping it real’ approach to this staffer would appear to be out of the window on the face of it. But if I don’t try them, how can I critique them?
I have done my research on what to expect from carbon wheels including the changes to the bike’s inertia, increased acceleration, shorter braking distances, and sharper turning that the change in gyroscopic forces brought on by saving 4.7kg from the OE fitment, will provide. Not to mention the benefit that these incredibly strong wheels will have for the ‘occasional’ pot-hole our tax funded roads throw at you. It may not be quite as frivolous an investment as the price tag alone suggests.
So the summer has officially arrived for me; I have a bit of round and round at Castle Combe lined up this month for my first track outing, and following that I will be back at school with CSS and of course the Fast Bikes Trackday at Cadwell on June 10. Plenty of good opportunities to make the R6 dance to a familiar tune. Though with all I have been told about the benefits of running carbon wheels, I may just go on another lengthy trip, just to see.
It’s no ugly duckling... Bridgestone T31s are perfect for the wet and cold. Charlie’s not held back with his expensive taste.
Dymag’s wheel of fortune.