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TOPIC: KZ650 cafe-racer

KZ650 cafe-racer 17 Aug 2019 14:32 #809348

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Can't wait to see it all come together.
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KZ650 cafe-racer 18 Aug 2019 12:01 #809394

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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


Thank you for information! I even didn't know that it might be so. Hope in combination with clipons it would be not so critical. Or may be I'll use some custom donut, cause front wheel option is great thing, but in this case I prefer classic look.


Can't wait to see it all come together.


So do I:laugh:
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 18 Aug 2019 12:18 #809397

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After I found out that high shouldered wheel’ rims that I ordered from Italy are not good enough for my project and was waiting for arrival of ordered substitute (this is another story), I concentrated my efforts on engine. I started from removing cylinder studs. Most of them had traces of corrosion, which is not a wonder for steel parts made some forty years ago. Initially I have intention to clean them and renew zinc plating, but studs seated in places very tight, so there was no chance to remove them undamaged. There are two general ways to remove studs: using two interlocked nuts and using special tool called “stud extractor tool”. Usually I prefer two interlocked high nuts, thus in result no thread, nor stud body is damaged. However, KZ650 stud thread is short even for two ordinary nuts and counting 40 years of sitting in aluminum this method allowed me to extract only two from twelve studs. All other studs I extracted with help of stud extractor.





Here is a couple of tips:
  • Heat the stud and then let it cool. It helps to release stud’ thread interlocked with aluminum of crankcase by oxidation and rust.
  • Do not try unscrew stud that stuck in one go, as amount of frictional heat will be tremendous and you’ll definitely wreck the parts. Instead unscrew stud for one or two turns, use penetrating oil on it and torque it back. Then repeat the action every time unscrewing stud further until it becomes free.



After I finished with studs I removed all steel parts from crankcase, except two nozzles of oil system. Forty years old crankcases insides were yellowish from oil depositions and I couldn’t remove that film with gasoline applied under pressure. Carburetor cleaner helped, but only in combination with rubbing, so it looked as a hell of work.









I found solution of problem on a local market of car parts. It was a synthetic detergent specially made by some local manufacturer for washing engine insides. I cautiously tested it on aluminum part and after I was sure it doesn’t “eats” aluminum I used that detergent on crankcases. Result was quite impressive: insides of crankcase became shiny.











I additionally cleaned some oxidation on outer surface of engine, checked all threads and started preparation for glass beads blasting.
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 18 Aug 2019 12:22 #809398

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I’ve made some improvised plugs and cut out a set of covers from transparent plastic to protect all essential surfaces of crankcase from glass blasting and to minimize penetration of glass beads into crankcase.







Then I loaded KZ650 cases onto my Zephyr 750 and rode to glass blasting workshop. After work was done crankcase looked much better. Now cases were as clean as possible from both inside and outside. I removed all plugs and covers. Sure, all the way I used fresh rubber gloves to keep aluminum clean and degreased.







I accurately packed crankcase and went with it to paint shop. Earlier I experimented with engine paints, but after Honda CB815 project I decided to stick with Eastwood engine paint. Their universal aluminum color is exactly shade of silver I like and it’s quite close to silver that Kawasaki use for painting engines, only a shade or two lighter. Painter did the work well and I especially glad that he prefers to paint halves of crankcase separately. That’s essential for ideal result.



After all cleaning and painting crankcase looks lovely.







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 18 Aug 2019 15:00 #809408

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I've owned my 1977 KZ650-C1 since it was new, and for sure the 1977 engines were not painted. Were later engines painted by Kawasaki? Ed
1977 KZ650-C1 Original Owner - Stock (with additional invisible FIAMM horn)

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KZ650 cafe-racer 19 Aug 2019 04:42 #809448

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Zephyr 750 (as well as 550 and 1100) engines were definitely painted by Kawasaki.
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 22 Aug 2019 02:48 #809605

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Funny that this rubbers are still available. Kawasaki KZ650 part list calls them damper rubbers, however they have no damping function but work as plugs for drain shafts drilled in cylinder block.





Rubber idler wheels for timing chain tension system of KZ650 now are rare, and I presume those of them that could be find on ebay and marked NewOldStock may do little good. Thus I replaced tension wheel with PMC sprocket and after some thoughts I decided to replace lower idler wheel ( part number 12055-004) with upgraded version of wheel made by Liska Racing, USA. Here it is:







As you may see, it’s dimensions perfectly correspond original idler wheel, however it is equipped with needle bearing and material of surface that contact with timing chain is not rubber, but some kind of plastic. I think it might be a good upgrade even if it could make chain a bit noisier.
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 22 Aug 2019 04:04 #809606

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Every project has its own issues. You might be ready for troubles you have had before, but there is always a possibility of new issues you have never experienced before.

I was ready for troubles with searching and buying parts, and for huge delays in work of Ukrainian customs, and for situation when work takes much more time than was expected. But some situations took me unarmed. Remember that nice KZ750 cylinder head that made long way to me from USA through Germany? I cleaned it, I checked all I could, I found out that two from four exhaust valves were slightly bent thus out of game. Then, as usual, I gave it to specialized workshop that has professional NC machines to renovate valve seats and do all specter of works with cylinder heads, valves, cylinders and so on and so forth. To avoid any misunderstanding I (again, as usual) brought service manual and clearly indicated specs for valve seats. And that's the point where I got completely unexpected result: firstly they cut wrong shape and then, trying to fix this issue cut valve seat too deep, thus installed valve height was out of specs for all valves. Simple calculation showed that valve end grinding will do no good, there was no enough of end to grind. My mistake was trusting that workshop. Thus, when I gave head in work I didn't indicate actual installed valve height or even acceptable diapason of measurements, so their misdoing cost nothing for them and wrecked cylinder head for me.

I didn't wish to meddle with valve seat replacing so I decided to buy another cylinder head. I found one in Austria with description that "mileage is around 10000 km and nothing is bent, broken and all was working up to the moment of disassembling". We asked seller if this information is true and he confirmed and even sent us photo of KZ clocks with some 14K km on it. Yesterday I received the parcel with that cylinder head. And guess what?

Part of fourth exhaust valve seat is chipped. We immediately sent photos to seller, however ebay states he is on vacation to the end of month. Bad luck...
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 22 Aug 2019 05:45 #809608

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File a not as described case now. That will stop the clock for you and start it for him. He will be notified by email and can respond in kind. If he wants it back insist on a return shipping label, They try to run out the clock so it's up to you to keep that from happening.
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kzrider.com/forum/11-projects/598262-kz-...-will-it-live#672882
kzrider.com/forum/2-engine/597654-poser?start=240#704229
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KZ650 cafe-racer 22 Aug 2019 06:21 #809614

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That sucks, I wish I could help find you a good head, the closest I found is up in Wisconsin and they are a big time chop shop that goes around buying bikes and parts for resale on ebay, it can be hit or miss with them and you don't get any history.
They have one now that is filthy as can be and sometimes that can be very telling, to bad he wasn't a little closer, I would ride up there and have a look.

What year 750's will work for your project?
I'll keep an eye out.
78 KZ1000 A2A
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KZ650 cafe-racer 22 Aug 2019 18:03 #809660

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Hi gazzz. Good to see you have BlueJay on your side. I have been off this forum for a little while but good to see some familiar faces and new folks as well. I hope you find what your looking for. I have followed your posts and am really impressed with your attention to detail. All the best with your project!
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2002 ZRX1200R -Red the faster color
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KZ650 cafe-racer 23 Aug 2019 13:10 #809695

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File a not as described case now. That will stop the clock for you and start it for him. He will be notified by email and can respond in kind. If he wants it back insist on a return shipping label, They try to run out the clock so it's up to you to keep that from happening.
Steve


Yes, thank you, in years of buying through Internet I was forced to start claims via ebay/paypal couple of times. However guy answered quite quickly, let's see what shall come of it.


That sucks, I wish I could help find you a good head, the closest I found is up in Wisconsin and they are a big time chop shop that goes around buying bikes and parts for resale on ebay, it can be hit or miss with them and you don't get any history.
They have one now that is filthy as can be and sometimes that can be very telling, to bad he wasn't a little closer, I would ride up there and have a look.


It's KZ750 1980 cylinder head I am after. I need one that equipped with mounts for upper sprocket of roller timing chain. I presume I saw every suitable cylinder head that is on ebay including the one from your post. It has couple of flaws: lower exhaust stud of second cylinder is torn out with large chunk of head and looks like remains of at least five cylinder head' cover bolts stuck in it.

Yet one unpleasant moment: to get head more or less quickly from USA I have to pay first for delivery it to intermediary warehouse in New Jersey and then pay 10$ per kg to get it by air in Ukraine. In case of cylinder head it's from 120 to 140 $ of additional expenses. That's why I prefer to buy heavy things in EU.


Hi gazzz. Good to see you have BlueJay on your side. I have been off this forum for a little while but good to see some familiar faces and new folks as well. I hope you find what your looking for. I have followed your posts and am really impressed with your attention to detail. All the best with your project!
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Thank you so much!
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 23 Aug 2019 15:04 #809702

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E-Bay Germany (private offers) listed a Z750 for 399 Euro and a cylinder head for 130 Euro.
The cylinder head is 40 km away from my home town so if you are interessted i can take a look on him for any damages.

www.ebay-kleinanzeigen.de/s-anzeige/kawa.../1188053353-305-7347
www.ebay-kleinanzeigen.de/s-anzeige/kawa.../1185099915-306-1455


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KZ650 cafe-racer 23 Aug 2019 18:33 #809714

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" It has couple of flaws: lower exhaust stud of second cylinder is torn out with large chunk of head and looks like remains of at least five cylinder head' cover bolts stuck in it."

Good eye Gazzz, and of course it's listed as "Good usable condition"
78 KZ1000 A2A
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KZ650 cafe-racer 23 Aug 2019 19:53 #809725

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gazzz wrote: In case of cylinder head it's from 120 to 140 $ of additional expenses. That's why I prefer to buy heavy things in EU.


It's probably not the best solution, but this one is about a 1 hour drive from my house.

pittsburgh.craigslist.org/mpo/d/new-cast...otor/6952087063.html

If you want it, I could try to get it (and pull the head for you).
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KZ650 cafe-racer 24 Aug 2019 12:17 #809759

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E-Bay Germany (private offers) listed a Z750 for 399 Euro and a cylinder head for 130 Euro.
The cylinder head is 40 km away from my home town so if you are interessted i can take a look on him for any damages.


Only early KZ750 heads fit KZ650 with roller chain. The distinctive feature is four mounts for upper tensioner sprocket:



I used to search parts on German ebay and webshops as they often are a source of good parts . I even know German names for most of motorcycle components. For the moment I see two offers that might be of interest:

This one is perspective, but I need no camshafts and I am slightly worried by information about issues with threads in description. It also has small crack on lower mount of exhaust stud of second cylinder.


This one has no camshafts but it also has no detailed description and seller has quite low rating. Seller also made mistake in title. I found this lot searching for cylinders.
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

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KZ650 cafe-racer 24 Aug 2019 13:01 #809763

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With your metal fabrication skills you can made your own CCIA for a KZ/GPZ 750 head gazzz!
A CCIA (roller chain) on a J/GPZ 1000/1100 cyl. head should work on KZ/GPZ 750 head with some modifications!?!?!
Give it a try gazzz.

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KZ650 cafe-racer 24 Aug 2019 13:02 #809764

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's probably not the best solution, but this one is about a 1 hour drive from my house.

pittsburgh.craigslist.org/mpo/d/new-cast...otor/6952087063.html

If you want it, I could try to get it (and pull the head for you).


Thank you! I forget that later KZ650 has same part number for cylinder head as KZ750. However first I'll try to find head closer to me as time is essential. I am already far out of schedule.
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 24 Aug 2019 14:18 #809773

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I don´t no why you Need a 750 head, (bigger ports, more power?) but i can offer you a FREE KZ650 cyl. head i bought really cheap (50 Euro). I only need the shim under buckets and valve spring retrainers for my Project bike engine. The head has no cracks, broken fins, dents or rip off threads, only cam bearing cap #2 and 4 are missing and got lost by the seller. The head has no clean air system ports in the casting like yours and will sold with the IN/EX cams, valves, springs for the shipping prize only.
I have no usage for the head and the other parts. Take him or i will kick him into the crap metal container I can make detailed pics if needed.


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KZ650 cafe-racer 25 Aug 2019 12:51 #809825

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I don´t no why you Need a 750 head, (bigger ports, more power?) but i can offer you a FREE KZ650 cyl. head i bought really cheap (50 Euro). I only need the shim under buckets and valve spring retrainers for my Project bike engine. The head has no cracks, broken fins, dents or rip off threads, only cam bearing cap #2 and 4 are missing and got lost by the seller. The head has no clean air system ports in the casting like yours and will sold with the IN/EX cams, valves, springs for the shipping prize only.
I have no usage for the head and the other parts. Take him or i will kick him into the crap metal container I can make detailed pics if needed.


Yes, I am chasing wider channels and larger valves, but it's not that simple. I want to preserve KZ650 engine look. It's really lovely looking engine and I admire it every time resting in chair in my workshop. I have original cylinder head and if I wanted to get only bigger valves and wider ports I'd get a try with Kawasaki ZR7 cylinder head. It has mounts for upper timing chain guide and even if they placed slightly differ than on KZ650 head, adaptation definitely would be much easier. And likely ZR7 head has valves even larger than KZ750. ZR7 are much fresher model than KZ750/GPZ750 thus its head might be found in much more fresher condition. I even found brand new ZR7 head for 350$. But it's a love to original style of KZ650 head that stops me from experimenting with ZR7 and other heads.

So my only choice is head from KZ650 later models or KZ750 head. Both of them similar to earlier KZ650 head but with larger ports and valves.
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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