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New owner in Chicago

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Bought a 75 which was located in Phoenix AZ. Has some mods, needs work which is what I wanted. I bought this so my son and I can turn wrenches and so later he can take it over. It's not stock, and no org parts came with, so we will turn it into our form of a cafe bike, per-se. If it was org, I would not touch it, but I'm also the type of guy that can't leave well enough alone, I like mods, that's why I bought this one.
Lots of questions to come, first motorcycle I have ever owned. Ridden a bunch back in the day, that includes at least 10 different rd's as all my friends had them, and even an ypvs rd500. I'm old now, speed is fun, in short bursts.
Bear with this newb.


Great to see different generations working on these old bikes together.

When you get a moment, photos of the bike would be good.

Pix attached.

Colin Johnston:
Welcome to the club, your 350 looks great.
You should find this forum very informative.

Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk


--- Quote from: Colin Johnston on December 08, 2022, 08:52:19 AM ---Welcome to the club, your 350 looks great.
You should find this forum very informative.

Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

--- End quote ---

Yep, that looks like my GF's RD350.  The rims I bought off ebay.  The rear is a tight fit.  The front hub had to be machined a tad to fit the RD350 brake rotor...I think it was a yamaha 650 hub?

INTAKE:  crossover is banshee.  Very good for initial takeoff.  I don't know if i "ported the intake to the crossover tube, but definitely helps for part throttle cruising.  Only buy banshee intake manifolds as the rib on the crossover fits snugly inside the manifolds (made for it)...i also like using only banshee / RZ350 clips to hold the manifold in place.  The manifolds are NOT a direct fit, so you have to "dremel" OFF the dog ears to fit on the reed cage being EXTRA careful not to grind away the built in o-ring seal on the manifold.  I usually tape over w/ electrical tape to protect while removing dog ears.

CARBS:  I believe the innards are not modified to DAve Freist mods

BARS: Stock Z1000 bars....perfect for the RD

Exhaust:  J&R exhaust...good for low end.  My GF likes these.  However, if it was me....I would probably go Spec II Classics.  I was using silicone / marine tape to seal the slip fit joints from header to exhaust...hate that slip fit.  Only lasts for a couple weeks and you gotta seal it again.  Another reason I like the spec IIs.  However the J&Rs  and that seat make it look like a small Norton....hey Norton!

The ignition (it's been AWHILE) I think is a XR700, single dual spark coil (the ignition prefers a 3 to 4 ohm resistance coil, I think I bought a 4 ohm off ebay for the 400, since I have the CRANE cams version of the XR700)...I'm not sure if it is the earlier Allison XR700 or the CRANE cams XR700.  you can probably still find the Crane cams version on ebay or Summit Racing online.

Mark (engineer) is the man to talk to about the XR700 ignition, since he pioneered it for the RDs....cheapest electronic parts ignition to buy.   I took a fender washer and had that trimmed down and pie cut for the triggers and had a machinist weld it the stock points cam.

I think economy cycle now sells a dial indicator (worth the cost) that fits UNDER the tank (read: small) to time the bike w/,. 

IMPORTANT:  Regarding timing, you need to "shield" the alternator area from LIGHT....the trigger is sensitive to light and will not time right if directly exposed.  I take a USPS cardboard letter thing and wrap it around that area to keep light OUT!  you also need to GROUND one of the spark plugs while timing.  so one  plug is out and grounded w/ alligator clips and the dial indicator is in the other hole that needs to be timed.  I static timed the bike w/ a battery charger hooked up, only turning the key to on position to rotate the dial indicator counter clockwise from 3 turns clockwise from TDC.  All this using a zenon strobe (for engine running only) timing gun hooked up to battery and spark plug.  For "static" time:  listen for spark from grounded spark plug while slowly turning rotor w/ key on and kill switch to run position.  With the strobe, obviously BOTH spark plugs are back in the engine w/ zenon hooked up and bike running.

Make sure you go to and ask for MARK.   Tell him you are a COMPLETE noob and need DETAILED instructions on how to work/time the ignition.  It's been awhile since I've worked or talked about RDs.

Judy has a BRAND NEW NOS OEM 1975 RD350 Tank in the original box.  She might be keen to sell it.   Talk about rare, but won't go cheap!

and the RZ350 sits in the garage for years...maybe some day I'll get around to it.

Meanwhile the 140,000 mile Z1000 kawasaki keeps going!


kevin b.  Battle Ground, WA

The UK guys must try out Johnston Ridge and Windy Ridge Mt. Saint Helens.   Wind River, Curly Creek Old man favorite run is Carson, WA to Cougar, WA and back home toBattle Ground.   Johnston Ridge is like a high elevation Isle of Man..FS90 from Cougar is my regular haunt to Pine Creek Ranger station.  Then there's ORegon and around Mt.


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