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February 2021 Club News

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Before and Afters

by Richard Kildea and Ian Grant

 Richard (centre) with his first Yamaha LC350.
It was 1982 and I had saved up enough cash to buy a Yamaha RD350LC, straight off the showroom floor. I rode that bike everywhere – rain, hail or frost, with no mechanical sympathy whatsoever. I had to go bigger of course and traded that LC350 in on a Suzuki Katana 650 shaft drive.

If I only knew then what I know now, enough said. Thanks to that Katana and many other bikes that came and went, my love for LC’s was never lost. I gave bikes a rest for about 20 years, until I saw an RZ350 on eBay.

I needed a new hobby so I bought, restored and sold it, only to do it again – this time with an LC250. I continued on with this hobby that developed into an obsession for about 10 years, concentrating on 2 strokes. I think I averaged about a bike and a half per year.

During this madness I met Ian Grant, we traded a lot of bike parts, stories and at one stage I swapped him an LC for an RZ. At one stage I had many bikes on the go in different forms, both standard and non-standard, all built and sprayed in my back shed.

I built my current RD350LC starting with a frame, bottom engine case and wheels, for which I paid a premium as it had matching serial numbers. The LC 350s were raced in Australia so it’s difficult to find a legitimate matching bike.

I already had the rest of the parts to finish the restoration in my shed. This was to be the “keeper” so it’s mechanically tweaked a bit and lots of fun to ride. This was to be my last restoration as my plate was filling up with an impending house move.

RD250 LC arrives from Garry Dibble.My restoration days now behind me, I could move forward, until Ian contacted me and said that Garry Dibble had a 250LC in his workshop, would I be interested?

I couldn’t help myself – he’d had the bike mechanically restored but it had sat in his shop for several years.

It just needed a tank, paintwork and finishing off.

The forks and rims of the RD250LC pictured in black were not standard as far as I was aware but Gary had done such a good job, so I left them as is.

Richard with Garry’s RD250 LC restored and his 350LC.
So now I am very fortunate to have a pair of LC’s on Club Rego, thanks to Ian Grant, Garry Dibble, Colin Dowsett and the Albany Vintage & Classic Motorcycle Club.

Ian Grant’s Yamaha YG1 80cc

This is a build of a 1963 or 1964 Yamaha YG1 80cc. It’s difficult to date, as there is not much info floating around that I could decipher with dating the model through engine and frame numbers.

It is a 1963 or 1964 model as the next year got an autolube oil pump and this one is premix from the factory.

The Yamaha YG1 wreck.
This was built from a wreck I got from Bob Rees years back and anther wreck I got from Peter Barker in Perth. Parts are still available from the Far East as small bikes are big thing over there.

The Yamaha YG1 restored.
This has been upgraded to the sports model with optional upswept exhaust, sporty chain guard and sporty front mudguard.

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