Yamaha Razz Performance Tipsby Sal BassUpdated October 25, 2017
The Yamaha Razz is a low-speed scooter with a 50cc engine. Yamaha started producing the Razz in 1987 as a cheap and fuel efficient transportation option. The Razz can achieve a fuel economy close to 80 miles per gallon. Modifying the engine can be difficult, but scooter enthusiasts have discovered a number of ways to add speed and torque to the vehicle.
Maintaining the Scooter
The 50cc engine that comes standard with the Yamaha Razz tops out at close to 30 miles per hour. Modifying the engine can be difficult, requiring mechanical skills as well as a high level of competence in driving the vehicle. To get the most performance out of the Yamaha Razz, an owner must maintain the vehicle with care. Driving off-road and up steep hills can put a lot of strain on the small Razz engine and may lead to premature mechanical troubles. To prevent this sort of engine malfunction, it is best to ride the Razz on flat, paved surfaces that reduce the overall wear and tear. Starting the engine at least once a week and letting it run can help keep the interior parts lubricated and running smoothly.
The Yamaha Razz comes with an ignition that has a built-in speed limiter, making engine modifications difficult and expensive. The most straightforward, and safest, way to modify the engine is to purchase a new, high-end CDI module (ignition) and have the part custom-designed to match the Razz engine. Certain auto mechanics will have computer-controlled design machines that can adjust the CDI to fit exactly with Razz specifications. The new ignition will be designed without the speed restrictions of the factory-made model, and allow for higher speeds.
If this modification has been achieved, it is important not to drive the Razz at speeds exceeding 30 miles per hour. The vehicle will become less stable as speeds increase and, therefore, more dangerous to drive.
Yamaha stopped producing the Razz in 2001, so all new owners will be obtaining used versions of the scooter. At the time of purchase, many vintage scooters will not have been used for a long period of time. To get a used Razz running, it is important to replace a few key components on the vehicle that may have become damaged over time. First, replace the spark plugs on the vehicle with new plugs. Drain the fuel tank and clean it with fresh water. Fill the tank with fresh gasoline. Clean the carburetor, change the oil and get new transmission fluid. The Razz will operate at a high level with these basic adjustments.
Sal Bass started in journalism as a writer/editor for his college newspaper at the University of Michigan, graduating in 2007 with a degree in economics. He was hired in 2008 to work full-time for "Daily Variety" and was soon promoted to production editor of Variety.com.