How to Restore a Yamaha RD 350

Written by max quigley
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How to Restore a Yamaha RD 350
Cleaning the engine takes precision and care. (motorcycle image by Greg Pickens from

Restoring a Yamaha RD350 can be a rewarding experience. It is a time-consuming undertaking but with the right tools even the novice motorcycle fan can do it. Keep in mind though that it will take longer than a couple of hours. Generally, you might have to set aside a couple of weeks for a motorcycle restoration project.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Complete set of automotive tools
  • User's Manual
  • Plastic bags
  • Sandpaper
  • Paint

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  1. 1

    Purchase the User's Manual. These manuals are available from the manufacturer and you can usually order them online or contact Yamaha by phone or e-mail. Having a manual is important because it will outline every feature of the motorcycle and give details on how to disassemble it and put it back together.

  2. 2

    Strip the motorcycle down to the frame. Inspect it for rust, chipped paint and any missing pieces. Sand off the rust either by hand or with a sandblaster until the frame is completely rust free. Once it has been completely cleaned, prime and paint the frame its original colour. You might want to take the motorcycle to a garage and have it done professionally.

  3. 3

    Inspect the engine for missing parts. You can search for any of the missing engine or frame parts in garages, automotive stores or online. There are many websites that provide Yamaha RD 350 parts (See Resources). Purchase all necessary parts.

  4. 4

    Clean the engine. This is the most dangerous part of restoring the bike as you can damage the engine if not done properly. Cover all electrical parts with plastic. Cover the air intake and carburettor tightly with plastic and secure it with tape so that no water can get in. Once all the important areas are covered, use a small brush or toothbrush to clean the larger debris from the engine. Wash the engine with soapy warm water. Hose down the engine so all soapy residue is gone. Keep a constant eye on the vulnerable parts of the engine and make sure they are completely covered the entire time.

  5. 5

    Reassemble the bike. Consult the manual on how to fit in the parts that were missing. Generally, cars and motorcycles are more difficult to reassemble than to take apart so take your time and read the manual carefully.

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