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1983 Yamaha YZ490

Before Ricky Carmichael entered the motocross scene, Broc Glover was a record-holding motocross racer. He won six AMA National Motocross Championships over the 1970s and 1980s, one being the 1983 500cc championship, on a 1983 Yamaha YZ490.

The 1983 Yamaha YZ490 was a great big bore two-stroke that really lit up when you hit the top-end. The engine was a bit sluggish in the bottom end, but excelled in the higher RPMs. This made the YZ490 great for longer tracks and hare scrambles. As fast as the 1983 YZ490 was, though, the brakes didn’t always seem to match up. The back brake was good, but the front brake was decent at best. They got the job done, but probably not as easily as most would like.

The 83 YZ490 had the typical Yamaha build. It was a longer bike with low bars. Like many big bore bikes, the kickstarter was high and long, so many people had trouble getting the bike started.

As far as suspension, the 1983 YZ490 had an adjustable rear mono-shock, and 43mm KYB front forks with air valves for adding or releasing pressure. While the suspension system worked well for lighter riders, it was set up a little on the soft side for heavier riders. The handling of this bike was pretty solid, but many riders of the 1983 YZ490 raised the forks all the way up in the triple clamp altering the front end ergonomics, helping the to turn a little better and become more agile. While it handled very well and blew away the competition in the straights, it was harder to control in turns.

1983 Yamaha YZ490 Motorcycles & Parts

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