Welcome once again to Alex’s Blog, but as Adrian from our Northwich store’s restoration project was so popular last week he has hi-jacked my blog once again….. so here, back by popular demand, is the latest installation of Adrian’s restoration:
“The only way to find out if my vintage Yamaha RD 250 F was beyond repair was to strip it fully. Down to the bare bones (or frame) so that’s what I did. This resulted in the shock of my life. What had I done? What had I let myself in for? The strip down was just like opening a can of worms. Every single nut and bolt was seized, or rotten, plastics were broken, the chrome fell of the exhausts, the brakes were seized on and I wondered what on earth I had taken on.
Even the foot peg rubbers and handle bar grips had rotted and fallen off. The biggest nightmare was when I realised that a bottom corner of the petrol tank had completely rotted through. With a lot of research, I discovered that these sorts of parts were like hen’s teeth – impossible to source but repairable. This wasn’t going to be an easy job but with a lot of effort, time and elbow grease this was going to be doable.
After two long, hard and quite frankly dirty days I had stripped the bike down and the first job then was to repaint the frame. I just got some nice gloss black paint (as close to original as possible) I didn’t want to powder coat the frame, as many people do, because I felt that the bike would lose it’s authentic look. Luckily (for once) for me the frame was absolutely solid with no signs of rust or corrosion – which compared to the rest of the bike was a miracle! Just simple wear marks where cables etc had rubbed were all that it had wrong with it – so just a complete rub down and repaint was called for. This was probably the easiest job on the bike .
Once happy with the frame, I did exactly the same with the swing arm and I then started on the foot peg hangers – a simple rub down and repaint with the same paint that I used on the frame. Some brand new foot peg rubbers went on. After this, I decided to strip, paint, polish and then rebuild the rear shocks.
Luckily for me the chroming on the rear shocks was still in very good condition and all staining and marks polished out. The next items on my agenda were the top and bottom yokes. They came together beautifully, if not quickly, and the bike was now ready for it’s forks to be fitted. The fork sliders were badly corroded as the alloy had “furred up” with the white corrosive mess that we all hate. (I know I do) I tried to polish this out but to no avail. In the end I had to concede defeat and paint them with a chrome paint and in they went! It was slowly but surely starting to, once again, look like a motorbike.”
Join us next week when Adrian starts on the wheels…..
If you have any restoration projects that you would like to share with the biking world then please send them in to us with photos and you too could be on Alex’s Blog.
In other J&S Accessories Ltd related news we have a rather special announcement coming soon, so keep your eyes peeled to our social media, to this blog and our website for more information.
Until next time, keep safe.