Performance TweaksContributed by Bill Abdou
Air Filter BucklingThe air filters have a hard plastic base and top with the filter element in the middle. Where the filter attaches to the black base housing, it is forced down and allowed to buckle, causing the element to seperate from the base. I am sure yours is the same way. I got new ones from my dealer, no questions asked, andinstalled them with a 2 inch piece of 5/8" heater hose at the top which keeps downward pressure on the filter once the top housing is in place. It takes a little force to assemble it, but once it's together it will stay.
Air Inlet HoleAt the front of the air filter housing, where the air enters, is a 1-1/2" hole behind the D shaped cover. The engine needs air, so I got a Dremmel tool and cut out the opening to match the D shaped cover leaving a small lip for support. It makes a big difference. The small hole from the factory is there to keep the noise level down. I heard no increase in noise, just more power. I did not rejet the carbs or install different mufflers. Yamaha spent millions of dollars in time and R&D to make it run the way it is. This just makes it a little better.
Spark Plug ScheduleThe factory wants us to change the spark plugs every 8,000 miles. You have to take half the bike apart to do so. So I installed NGK racing Platinum plugs that I got from NAPA auto parts and gapped them as indicated in the manual. Now I dont have to change them for quite some time, though I will check them at 16,000 to see how they are wearing. Result: quicker starts and more power.
Integrated BrakesYou can buy the steel braided brake lines at any HD shop or any catalog. The price is about $160 for all the parts needed, plus the DOT4 brake fluid. Required fittings are:
1 straight banjo
3 45degree banjos
2 90 degree banjos
11 crush washers
1 long fluid bolt for the rear master cylinder
2 brake lines 36" long
1 brake line 24" long
1 brake line 12" long
1 in-line connector
Connect the rear caliper to the right front caliper and they will be operated by the foot brake pedal. The left caliper will be activated by the front brake lever. From the rear caliper, start with 45 degree to 36" hose to 90 degree to rear master cylinder. From there, opposed 90 degree to 24" hose to in-line connector to 36" hose through front end to 45 degree and connct to right front caliper. At center juction for the front calipers, use the straight banjo to the 18" hose to the 45 degree connector to the left caliper, using all 11 crush washers between each banjo fitting. 3 are required at the rear master cylinder. Use a known good vacuum pump with constant vacuum to bleed the systems. The intergrated side is the tricky one because you have to go higher than the rear fill cup. Once properly bled, pump the pedal a lot, with a slow yet firm action. You will see bubbles escape to the top of the fill cup. Your pedal will be lower than original, with a power brake feel. I assure you I have tested this system and it works great. Nothing like stopping a half ton machine firmly with no skidding.
Connector Corrosion PreventionGet a tube of dielectric silicone compound and spread it into every electrical connection from front to rear. Now there will be absolutely no wire corrosion at the connectors. Bring on the rain and the fog, it's ready!
Cheap Rad GuardGo to the local hardware store and get some heavy wire mesh screen which has square holes to it's formation. Then put fiberglass black screen on the one side of the mesh and adhere with clear epoxy in the corners. Cut to fit the ouside of the radiator and fasten with chrome edge door guard. Cut to fit the outside rails of the radiator. Add clear epoxy if needed. Make sure the screen faces outward. You now have a bug and rock guard that cost you 5 bucks and a little time. Looks cool too.
Add A TachometerIf you want to add a tachometer to the RSV, J.C. Whitney sells a handlebar mount for about 40 bucks. The ignition module is located under the radiator towards the right side. Connect the tachometer pickup lead to the orange wire out of the module. You will need a 12 volt test light to find a wire to hook up the lights to.
Last update: 06:23 PM Sunday, September 26, 2004