Allen Millyard Kawasaki 5 Cylinder for Sale

5 cylinder Kawasaki 2 stroke handbuilt by Allen Millyard

5 cylinder Kawasaki 2 stroke handbuilt by Allen Millyard

Well, you don't see one of these every day, an Allen Millyard custom Kawasaki 5 cylinder 2 stroke is currently for sale. Millyard is known for his engines, handbuilt multi cylinder variants of stock engines, in this case an 850cc 5 cylinder made from two 3 cylinder donor engines.

The term handbuilt is exactly what it means, too, he does a lot of cutting and filing and mating of surfaces by hand, it's really incredible.

Starting bid is $42,500.00. For someone who wants a truly unique motorcycle, from a very uncommon builder, this is it.

Link: Kawasaki 5 cylinder for sale

Comments

  1. todd says

    I don’t have the money but I think it’s worth it. Basically it’s a piece of collectible art. Showing up at your local bike meet on this would grab more attention than having Paris Hilton on the back of your XLCH.

    -todd

  2. FREEMAN says

    When I first saw that I thought it was photoshopped. Ahh, five carbs! Good grief.
    Interesting bike.

    • says

      Does that mean your opinion of its worth – whatever that may be – is realistic? Let’s just see what it eventually goes for.

  3. eric says

    Does anyone know what the specs on this bike are? I had heard that the power band on two strokes like the stock bike were very narrow, and when it came on, the front wheel came up regardless.
    looks like a fun ride.

  4. Walter says

    Great machining skills but these bikes were meant to go fast in corners
    so what is the point if you start dragging your cases around 40mph turns? Although I love unique custom builds I would rather have a cookie cutter sport bike than to sacrifice handling to be different.

    • Kenny says

      Weren’t the Kawasaki triples colloquially known as the Widowmakers due their terrible handling, overwhelming power (for the time) and brakes that were not up to the task.

      • tim says

        I read a really good article about that I think by Kevin Cameron, who basically said their reputation was overstated. They were faster than other bikes of the day, and like a lot of muppets buy GSXR1000’s and promptly impale themselves into bits of the scenery today, that happened then too. They used to production race them and do what they did to every bike then: fork brace, frame bracing, and longer shocks and firmer forksprings.

        • says

          I’m old enough to have ridden a Mach III when new, and even compared to other japanese bikes of the time, the power was way beyond what the chassis could cope with. Kevin Cameron – bless him – may be right that the bad rep was overstated, but then even a horrible handling bike can be described worse than it actualy is.

          Atill think, though, that the best possible use of a Mach III engine would be to place it in a Norton ‘Featherbed’ frame, and have a cafĂ© racer that’ll get purists of all kinds really upset.

  5. QrazyQat says

    “I had heard that the power band on two strokes like the stock bike were very narrow, and when it came on, the front wheel came up regardless.”
    ***
    I had an H1 (the 500cc) when it first came out and the power band started in earnest at 6,000 and the redline was 8,750. Since I’d stepped up from my 100cc Yamaha to that bike it was quite a jump, and a surprise since during the break-in period I kept it under 6,000 as suggested, and it was already faster than anything I’d ridden. :)

    It took some getting used to when accelerating hard esp. in the first 3 gears but it didn’t necessarily wheelie if you didn’t want it to. However, clumsy shifting and/or dropping the clutch at the start would do it (once got the front off the ground with a clumsy shift into 5th — about 90mph — which wasn’t the normal experience with bikes back then). It wasn’t quite like an auto-wheelie, unlike say a Yamaha RD400 which did that in the low gears, although that bike did it very nicely, just like a motocross bike — very controllable.

    The main thing with the Kawasaki back then is that it was cheap ($1040 new) and got into the hands of a lot of inexperienced riders. A lot of them weren’t as careful as I was.
    ***
    “Great machining skills but these bikes were meant to go fast in corners…”
    ***
    That’s a funny. Although the Kawasaki triples’ cornering manners have been slammed a bit more than they should, IMO, they weren’t tops at it, for sure. A rearward weight bias and slightly flexible forks arrangement was, again IMO, the culprit (people have said the frame was flexible, but altho compared to bikes now it was, it wasn’t any worse than the typical bike back then, and way better than, say, my Suzuki 500 twin (which felt like rubber). I rode every day on a twisty and bumpy road, exactly what the H1 was not meant for, and the way I’d describe it was that it wasn’t all that good, but it tried to help you out — somewhat scary at fast cornering speeds but always on your side to the extent of its abilities. Again, the comparison with the Suzuki 500 was that the Suzuki was malevalent in the same conditions.

    However, cornering clearance was a huge problem with the H1, and that’s what I wondered with this bike. Especially with the alternator and ignition hanging off the side of the crank it was wide, very wide, and cornering clearance suffered a lot. I eventually got to where the pipes got bashed enough (and lost a bolt that subsequently let the right side pipes move over to the middle when dragged, and I ended up dragging the pegs to the point where they’d fold up I’d drag the mounting bracket for the peg. And this wasn’t roadracing angles here; you just got used to dragging things. Nevertheless, because of the power it was really fast in twisty conditions; you just had to get used to wobbles and such.

    The sound was always really great, and with two extra cyclinders, well… The place I worked dealt with Ferraris and was at the base of a long hill which certain vehicles going up meant for a great sound. There were a couple of vehicles that the mechanics in the shop would stop working to listen to when they were accelerated hard up that hill. An exotic Abarth was one, and I’m told my H1 was another. The howl was something else. While onboard the howl through the air cleaner was loud too. It was an incredible bike; not practical in many ways, and far behind modern bikes in so many ways as well, but for its time it was an amazing jump forward.

  6. QrazyQat says

    To offer my experience re a later comment, the brakes on the H1 (double-leading shoe front) were fine for the time. Nothing on the street was up to the Honda Four’s disc (except for exotica like an MV with a 4-leading shoe front), but for that time the Kawasaki H1’s brakes were fine. Nowadays we’d say they were terrible :) but then I remember reading the original road tests for the Honda 750 Four and then a road test for essentially the same bike sold over a decade later. The big points in the original were the phenomenal cornering clearance, utter lack of vibration, and fantastic brakes; in the later test the weakest points of the bike were the poor cornering clearance, the annoying vibration, and the weak-ass brakes.

    Things change. :)

  7. cycledave says

    This 850 five fits right into the awesomely impractical creations that makes us love and ride motorcycles. Allen Millyard just shows us what can be done when others say it can’t be done. Now if I could just come up with the money….!

  8. B50 Jim says

    Cor Blimey! This is an exercise in total impractibility! As others have noted, start with a bike that offers less-than great handling and brakes but an evil powerband, and graft on more cylinders that are sure to make it downright vicious — all because you can. Don’t let them tell you “No”, Allen; just go for it! What impresses me most is the workmanship. Very high quality using basic machine-shop tools and elbow grease. Amazing; and that 5-cylinder sounds like it could rev forever.

    I knew a fellow who bought a new H-1 in 1970, and it was a revelation. The first thing he did was hang the stock exhaust over the rafters and bolt on three expansion chambers, then re-jet the carbs. To someone accustomed to hearing the rumble of Harleys, the kettle-drum roll of the English twins and the inline song of the new CB-750s, that Kawi’s wail on the pipes was like a bike from another planet. Sure, a Triumph or BSA could walk it in the corners, but it would absolutely stomp everything once the road straightened out. A fabulous machine at the beginning of the Era of Fabulous Machines. There never will be its like again.

  9. Leo Speedwagon says

    I wonder if it will be sold with the twin disc set up seen in the You Tube video or with the drum set up? He should have been as creative with the front brakes as with the engine. Last time I rode a drum braked, vintage bike I had to dispose of my underwear afterwards.

  10. B50 Jim says

    Leo —
    Most drum-braked bikes were so far out of adjustment it was a miracle that they stopped at all. Any of the later drum brake with twin leading shoes worked quite well as long as you kept them adjusted according to the book. Still, they required a firm hand on the lever. After riding my B50, the first time I used the disc brake on my new Yamaha XS650 I nearly washed out the front end. Talk about having to dispose of your underwear!

  11. Denis says

    Like Qrazy Qat I too had an early H1 in 1969. In my experience everything Qrazy Qat says says is dead-on accurate. That machine was built to do one thing: accelerate like mad in a straight line. It did that very well. I never thought it was particularly dangerous, but I had been riding for several years when I bought mine. I had already owned several Japanese, English, and American motorcycles when I bought mine so I was not a beginner. The way the power band came on abruptly when the tach hit 6,000 rpm was an adrenaline rush that I enjoyed every chance I got… Hey I was 22 years old, and immortal! I remember often accelerating away from stoplights holding the front wheel just off the ground through the first three gears with no particular effort. I thought then, and I think now that someone of little or no experience could get into a lot of trouble on that motorcycle (and many others today) before he realized what was happening. any number of today’s 600cc sport bikes will put a beginner on the ground if the power comes on while heeled over in a corner. I’ve seen it happen on the streets any number of times, so in that regard I don’t think the Kawasaki deserves the “widowmaker” label any more than does a Suzuki GSXR600 for instance… let alone the bigger and more powerful motorcycles.
    Anyway: Qrazy Qat I enjoyed your look back. In many ways it was just like mine.
    Ride safe everybody…..

  12. says

    If you guys think this bike is good (which it is)
    I have also seen his V8 engined 4 stroke Kawasaki and you’ll want to check out his Dodge V10 engined 2 wheeler!!
    Road legal in the UK and seen at various events
    Now that is definitely a new underwear job!!
    Do a google.. for Alan Millyard V10 and you should get various clips

  13. Tyler says

    “850cc 5 cylinder made from two 3 cylinder donor engines”

    OK just to be nitpicky, but how do you get three center cylinders out of two Kawasaki triple engines?

    • tael says

      Its two 3 cylinder engines cut down to 2 and a half cylinders then joined. In essence the centre cylinder crankcase has a join in its middle. The barrels being seperate items are the easy bit. its the crank that takes Allen’s genius to complete reliablily.

  14. Thom says

    I thought this bike was 666cc… That would be more to my liking, although I’d be more interested in the Z1 v8…

  15. BB says

    This bike looks like a lot of fun. I, too had an H1 and loved it. Bought it used and it already had chambers and carbs done. I had bought a new Husky 400 Cross in the fall of 1970 and raced it some so the power of the H1 didn’t seem scary at all. Many years and bikes later I still have fond memories of those two strokers. Two more cylinders seems logical.

  16. QrazyQat says

    One other bit of H1 trivia might be interesting, either to old-timers or those curious about old-timey days. That’s the way those bikes were so different from the 2-strokes that’d come before. It was amazing that the bike was at once so high performance and so easy to start, etc. For instance, back then spark plugs in 2-strokes just didn’t last, but with the H1’s electronic ignition the plugs would last for thousands of miles and not foul; it may not seem like much to those used to modern bikes, but it was a big leap forward back then. (And that ignition was handy for my mom whenever I neared her driveway; she could always tell when I was arriving by the static on the TV. :)) The H1 was also incredibly easy to start, even though it was kickstart only. When cold I’d do 2 kicks, a half-hearted one to open up the automatic fuel petcock, and a fuller one to start it. When it was hot you barely stroked the starter and it would light. I even started it with one kick after a sleet storm when the engine was literally encased in 1/4″ of ice and had been all day — just 3 sparkplugs going into a cake of ice.

    Maybe the weirdest thing to illustrate this happened when I dropped the bike in a very slow corner on some hot tar. It landed on the left side and lay there idling, at 1500 rpm, just as if it was standing upright. Out of curiosity I decided I’d let it idle until it either started racing or died, just to see how long it took (I figured maybe 15-20 seconds). Well, after a couple of minutes of standing there with the thing lying on its side idling at 1500 rpm I just got bored and reached down and turned it off. I couldn’t believe it could do that.

  17. OMMAG says

    I’d love to ride it ….. wishful thinking

    But …. still … there’s more triples out there and plenty of cutting tools and welding equipment waiting to be put to use.

  18. Scotduke says

    Just an aide but there was a bike on ebay here in the UK with an H1 motor slotted in a Norton featherbed frame. It looked pretty good, can’t remember what it sold for (Kawaton, Norasaki?).

    A few of the multi-cylinder two stroke Kawasaki creations have also sold here, nuts but amusing.

  19. Sick Cylinder says

    Allen Millyard definitely uses three centre cylinders in his five cylinder bikes and two in his four cylinder creations – agreed the cranks are a work of art.

    He has recently done some amazing work on mountain bike design / development for his son who races.

    I find his machines amazing – not just because of the skill level (witness his V12 Kawasaki), but because he also has time for a family and to hold down a full time job as an Engineer in the UK Nuclear industry.

    I met him once at the “Festival of a Thousand Bikes” and found him very easy going.

  20. Byrd says

    Indeed the term “hand built” does not do it justice. I think perhaps “Handful” does though.