YAMAHA RD421

It be­gan as a bud­get build that spi­ralled steadily up­wards. Barry made a con­scious de­ci­son to do a good idea jus­tice – and his move has paid off in spades

Practical Sportsbikes (UK) - - Special Build of the Year 2018 - Barry An­stis

Hard to be­lieve that this im­mac­u­late big inch LC was go­ing to be a Sanc­tu­ary-style Z1. “I’d al­ways lusted af­ter a Sanc­tu­ary type bike, but it just worked out too ex­pen­sive on pa­per,” says semi-re­tired pipe-fit­ter and welder Barry. “I’d never had an LC back in the day, all my money went on mo­tocross and road rac­ing. But I built a YPVS hy­brid four years ago and de­cided on a sin­gle-seat spe­cial in­stead.”

En­gine is a Mad Bik­ers 421-kit­ted, with a 4mm stroked crank,v Force 3 reed blocks, Zeel­tronic ig­ni­tion and Mar­tin Dent pipes. This lit­tle list equates to 95bhp at the rear wheel. “Around town it’s just like a Power Valve to 4000rpm, mainly be­cause of the long stroke. From four and half to six it goes slightly flat, then at 6200rpm all hell breaks loose,” laughs Barry. “It dou­bles its horse­power within a 1000 rev band.”

There’s no doubt­ing the fit­ness of the en­gine.and the cy­cle parts do ev­ery jus­tice to the mo­tor. “When I was build­ing it, it started look­ing quite good,” says Barry. “So I thought ‘OK, right, I’d bet­ter throw some more money at it’.” Barry’s idea of more money meant £10 for the seat unit and 40 quid for the tank.the tank’s a plas­tic Acer­bis item he saw in Ger­many, the sin­gle seat unit most likely an RG500 race­bike unit. “It had the cut-outs for the pipes, so I re­made them square and then cut the lou­vres in with some gen­uine car­bon fi­bre back­ing.the whole rear sub­frame’s new too.” And mounted with all masked fas­ten­ers for that ‘fly­ing’ look.

Swingarm’s RGV with ally sheet welded over the dim­pled re­cesses of the orig­i­nal’s sides, forks are ZX-6R, head­light’s CB900. “It’s an inch less in di­am­e­ter than an LC unit. I like head­lights to be tucked right up against the yokes and head­stock.” So Barry fabbed his own head­light mounts, tapped un­der the top yoke and the top of the bot­tom yoke to get the ‘float­ing’ head­light look.the in­stru­ment pod is all his too in welded ally.

He’s still on a stan­dard LC gear­box which, al­though reck­oned to be mar­ginal for this sort of power out­put, is still hang­ing in there with no out­ward signs of dis­tress. “I’ve got a Nova close ra­tio ’box in mind,” says Barry. “Then again I’ve got another six LC gear­boxes in bits as a back up too.”

“It started off as a bud­get build,” laughs Barry. He spent out on Ri­zoma ris­ers and ’bars on the RGV yokes: “They’re ex­pen­sive, but I re­ally like the bend on them.” And reck­ons the two and a half years it took have cost him £9000 all in. “Five of that was the mo­tor.the pipes were a grand too.” Those fixed costs are un­avoid­able, the in­ge­nu­ity and ab­so­lute at­ten­tion to de­tail are what makes this a stand­out stro­ker. “I just hate any­thing stan­dard,” says Barry. “You have to make it bet­ter, and you have to build it to ride too.” 3000 miles later 125kg with 95bhp is very near as good as it gets.

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