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TOPIC: KZ650 cafe-racer

KZ650 cafe-racer 04 Jul 2019 14:47 #806968

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Brilliant work gazzz, your parts details are looking so great.
I have to extend my browser Cache to watch all you pics.

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KZ650 cafe-racer 05 Jul 2019 01:15 #806982

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Thank you for good words.

I am used to give information as combination of text and photos. I'd gladly insert thumbnail of pictures instead of full sized photos (even as they are prepared for web), but since the only option to put picture in text body is button "insert" I could do nothing about that.

I hoped for some comments to dilute my posts, however the only person that commenting this topic is you, thank you for that.
Kawasaki KZ650 cafe-racer: in progress

Kawasaki Zephyr 750 (810ccm, 4in4, spoked wheels)
Honda CB815 "Eight Fifteen" cafe-racer
Yamaha XJ "Eight Ball" cafe-racer

www.gazzz-garage.com
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KZ650 cafe-racer 05 Jul 2019 04:31 #806983

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Beautiful work, nothing more to say than keep the pictures coming.
Chuck
81 KZ750 LTD
03 FZ1
www.oldjeep.com
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KZ650 cafe-racer 05 Jul 2019 05:46 #806985

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Love this build!:laugh:
Kawasaki KZ 750/4 LTD 1981
Kawasaki KLR 650 2011
Argentina - Buenos Aires
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KZ650 cafe-racer 05 Jul 2019 18:31 #807023

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I love the attention to detail. In my opinion, that is what makes the difference between a nice build and a great build.
1982 KZ1000 LTD parts donor
1981 KZ1000 LTD awaiting resurrection
2000 ZRX1100 not ridden enough
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KZ650 cafe-racer 06 Jul 2019 13:41 #807072

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Thank you!

Let's continue. Finally the day came when I finished polishing the last few parts.













Kawasaki KZ650 cafe-racer: in progress

Kawasaki Zephyr 750 (810ccm, 4in4, spoked wheels)
Honda CB815 "Eight Fifteen" cafe-racer
Yamaha XJ "Eight Ball" cafe-racer

www.gazzz-garage.com

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KZ650 cafe-racer 06 Jul 2019 13:51 #807073

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Honda CBX550 wheels’ and brake’ components polishing give me a hell of work. Even counting that CBX550 wheels are one of key points of my Kawasaki KZ650 cafe-racer project, they took tremendous amount of working time. However, it was worth it. Here are photos of assembled hubs.

Front:















Kawasaki KZ650 cafe-racer: in progress

Kawasaki Zephyr 750 (810ccm, 4in4, spoked wheels)
Honda CB815 "Eight Fifteen" cafe-racer
Yamaha XJ "Eight Ball" cafe-racer

www.gazzz-garage.com

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KZ650 cafe-racer 06 Jul 2019 13:54 #807074

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Kawasaki KZ650 cafe-racer: in progress

Kawasaki Zephyr 750 (810ccm, 4in4, spoked wheels)
Honda CB815 "Eight Fifteen" cafe-racer
Yamaha XJ "Eight Ball" cafe-racer

www.gazzz-garage.com

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KZ650 cafe-racer 06 Jul 2019 13:56 #807075

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The distinctive feature of every our project is preassembling photo that shows all parts, units and components of project placed on some background. We started this tradition of ours in 2014 when such “Exploded view” photos of motorcycles were scarce.

Honda CBX550 wheels worth to be regarded as project on their own. No need to count man-hours I spent on wheels modification, adaptation to chassis, comstar-to-spoke conversion, components cleaning and polishing to prove this my statement. Better take a look at the photo below:

Kawasaki KZ650 cafe-racer: in progress

Kawasaki Zephyr 750 (810ccm, 4in4, spoked wheels)
Honda CB815 "Eight Fifteen" cafe-racer
Yamaha XJ "Eight Ball" cafe-racer

www.gazzz-garage.com
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KZ650 cafe-racer 06 Jul 2019 15:05 #807080

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I can´t find any words to discribe this "Art of metal working skills".:woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo:
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KZ650 cafe-racer 21 Jul 2019 18:15 #807947

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I am amazed that parts off a 1990's 750 will work on a 70's 650 engine, so you can use the oil cooler too right?
They probably have a better clutch actuator too.
Nice to know about the Honda cables matching up, that's thinking out side of the box!
Interesting build , I will be looking forward to more surprises.
JD
78 KZ1000 A2A

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KZ650 cafe-racer 21 Jul 2019 20:48 #807958

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Wow!

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KZ650 cafe-racer 30 Jul 2019 23:15 #808471

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Thanks!


I am amazed that parts off a 1990's 750 will work on a 70's 650 engine, so you can use the oil cooler too right?
They probably have a better clutch actuator too.
Nice to know about the Honda cables matching up, that's thinking out side of the box!
Interesting build , I will be looking forward to more surprises.
JD


Zephyr 750 engine is further development of KZ750/650 engines, so there is no wonder in compatibility. And yes, clutch cover from Zephyr 750 may be installed on KZs. It has clutch actuator of "modern" type, but unfortunately it has no port for kick starter.
Kawasaki KZ650 cafe-racer: in progress

Kawasaki Zephyr 750 (810ccm, 4in4, spoked wheels)
Honda CB815 "Eight Fifteen" cafe-racer
Yamaha XJ "Eight Ball" cafe-racer

www.gazzz-garage.com
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Last edit: by gazzz.

KZ650 cafe-racer 30 Jul 2019 23:34 #808473

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There are a lot of things you have to buy when you build project having only frame and engine for start. However, in my opinion, it's a bright side of business.

It's hard to push all purchases even in few posts, so here is so to say an excerpt.

For exhaust I chose stainless steel downpipes for Kawasaki Zephyr 750, made in UK by Black Widow Exhaust LTD. They perfectly fit KZ650 engine, are light weighted and have better throughput than OEM Zephyr 750 downpipes. It would be good addition to KZ750 cylinder head. I have used same downpipes on my own Zephyr 750 (with Wiseco 810 ecm forged piston kit) before I got 4ini4 exhaust and I was very pleased with them, moreover they easily gave my Zephyr additional 8Hp. But Dyno chart will be better illustration than words:



Thus, when it came to KZ650 project I ordered these downpipes without hesitation: perfect combination of classic look and performance worth every penny spent on it.







But sure, exhaust isn’t complete without mufflers. I like mufflers I used in the previous project, Honda CB815 very much. They were New Old Stock, made in Japan by MC back in 1970s. I wished for this my project something as special as those mufflers and after some search I found exactly what I looked for, yet one blast from the past. Back in 1960s-1970s there was a company in USA called Anderson-Kittelson Distributors, Inc. They have traded all kind of motorcycle and snowmobile parts, stuff and gear for long years, or may be for decades, but I suppose they disappeared from the market in the end of 1970s or in beginning of the 1980s.
Still some parts with Anderson-Kittelson logo on packaging may be found on ebay, and that’s where I found a pair of NOS Anderson-Kittelson Upsweep Cocktail Shaker mufflers. It was love at first sight so I bought them mostly immediately. We’ve already received parcel with mufflers, so here is a set of photos:









And yet another little feature: mufflers perfectly fit downpipes via OEM Zephyr 750 exhaust gaskets:

Kawasaki KZ650 cafe-racer: in progress

Kawasaki Zephyr 750 (810ccm, 4in4, spoked wheels)
Honda CB815 "Eight Fifteen" cafe-racer
Yamaha XJ "Eight Ball" cafe-racer

www.gazzz-garage.com

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KZ650 cafe-racer 30 Jul 2019 23:59 #808474

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How many OEM parts one could need when working on project like my Kawasaki KZ650 cafe-racer? The answer is: as much as one can put hands on. The quantity of OEM parts quite increased since I shot this photo...



It's all kinds of stuff: rubbers, from seals and O-rings to dumpers plus plugs for cylinders drain holes, hardware from exhaust studs to cylinder head nuts and so on and so forth, including carburetor clamps, clutch lever and fuel tap.

Unfortunately, turned out that NOS cylinder base gasket crumbles. Looks like I have to use aftermarket gasket instead.
Kawasaki KZ650 cafe-racer: in progress

Kawasaki Zephyr 750 (810ccm, 4in4, spoked wheels)
Honda CB815 "Eight Fifteen" cafe-racer
Yamaha XJ "Eight Ball" cafe-racer

www.gazzz-garage.com

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KZ650 cafe-racer 31 Jul 2019 00:19 #808475

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Sure, for project based on 1978 Kawasaki KZ650 I wished to use some vintage-looking master cylinder. However I am used to perfect working brakes, thus master cylinder should only look vintage but work like modern. Thus I did some search and fished out this very great device. It’s brand new, made by Nissin/Daytona, its design perfectly fit clip-ons and its 5/8″ piston is ideal for work with two Honda CBX550 front calipers.





Usually I prefer to replace brake calipers with fresh, removed from the bikes with low mileage. However, in case of CBX550 calipers this exchange is impossible, as its calipers are quite specific and aren’t interchangeable with calipers from new models. This means that I have to rebuild original calipers. For this purpose I bought some parts. First of them is a set of stainless steel pistons for two front and one rear caliper.





Next lot is a set of seals and dust seals for calipers. To get predictable positive result I chose OEM seals.



I chose sintered brake pads to increase bike braking performance. Not a lot of manufacturers make sintered pads for Honda CBX550 and other bikes with same calipers and I was glad to find Vesrah among those of them who do.



Kawasaki KZ650 cafe-racer: in progress

Kawasaki Zephyr 750 (810ccm, 4in4, spoked wheels)
Honda CB815 "Eight Fifteen" cafe-racer
Yamaha XJ "Eight Ball" cafe-racer

www.gazzz-garage.com

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KZ650 cafe-racer 17 Aug 2019 13:14 #809332

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My general idea for Kawasaki KZ650 cafe-racer dashboard is to made it as invisible as possible for observer but at the same time still easy readable for rider. Thus I chose headlight with opening for gauge installation. However, now when I assembled front wheel, I am thinking about larger headlight...

I like needle tachometers and in my opinion tachometer is second most important indicator after oil pressure lamp, thus I chose “analogue looking” electronic MMB 48mm tachometer to fit the slot in the headlight.

The choice of speedometer was not so simple. However, the question was sold once I stumbled upon Motogadget Motoscope mini in my web search. It turned out to be even better than on web photos : very nicely made and very small, but easy readable gauge.

And sure, the gauge set wouldn’t be complete without oil temperature gauge, simple, but very useful thing.
Kawasaki KZ650 cafe-racer: in progress

Kawasaki Zephyr 750 (810ccm, 4in4, spoked wheels)
Honda CB815 "Eight Fifteen" cafe-racer
Yamaha XJ "Eight Ball" cafe-racer

www.gazzz-garage.com

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KZ650 cafe-racer 17 Aug 2019 13:28 #809334

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There is nothing surprising in fact that for Kawasaki KZ650 cafe-racer I chose fully adjustable Kayaba shocks from Kawasaki Zephyr 750. However this particular pair is a bit special as it came from Zephyr 750 D with only 5500km and no sign of rust n adjusters or springs. Rare thing so to say.







Next two lots are from Japan and both are of same manufacturer, Kijima. First are fork gaiters of same style that I used for Honda CB850 “Eight Fifteen” and Yamaha XJ “Eight ball”. Just like them.



This time I chose classic cast aluminum headlights brackets. There are a lot of “made in China” copies of this brackets so to avoid disappointment from receiving cheap made and looking parts I ordered brackets from manufacture I trust. And I wasn’t disappointed with Kijima headlight brackets. They turned out to be perfectly made: casting is clean and precise, machining well done, thus they fit fork perfectly and tight. May be finish of polishing is a bit not perfect, but this is not a problem for me.







Sure, I couldn’t get past fuel cap with integrated fuel gauge...

Kawasaki KZ650 cafe-racer: in progress

Kawasaki Zephyr 750 (810ccm, 4in4, spoked wheels)
Honda CB815 "Eight Fifteen" cafe-racer
Yamaha XJ "Eight Ball" cafe-racer

www.gazzz-garage.com

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KZ650 cafe-racer 17 Aug 2019 13:32 #809336

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... and copy of Kawasaki Z900 or Z1 handlebar switches. I like design of these switches and KZ650 handlebar switches look similar to them so I decided to use them in KZ project even as I have no intention using original KZ650 wiring and ignition.

I decided to use 525 chain (as usually, D.I.D. 525VX G&B) so front sprocket is from Zephyr 750, pity it doesn’t fit KZ650 with that rubber damper untouched. However I think I could easily fix this issue.

However, lets finish with purchases. I think I posted enough about them to give you idea of my approach to this side of project.
Kawasaki KZ650 cafe-racer: in progress

Kawasaki Zephyr 750 (810ccm, 4in4, spoked wheels)
Honda CB815 "Eight Fifteen" cafe-racer
Yamaha XJ "Eight Ball" cafe-racer

www.gazzz-garage.com

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KZ650 cafe-racer 17 Aug 2019 13:47 #809338

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I have used those handlebar switches on two of my bikes. The problem is the kill switch sticks out too far and is quite easy to accidentally switch off with your gloved hand. This is why on 77 and later models Kawi moved the lever on the switch to be at the bottom. I solved this by converting to a quick turn throttle which spaced your hand farther from the switch and also makes the front wheel optional on my kz1000... if you know what I mean :D
-Vic
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'78 kz1000 LTD long term project

'80 kz750G project
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