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Making a new fin !! 07 Feb 2021 10:16 #843120

  • Sheath
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Hey again guys & dolls!! As some of you may know, I've been after bits of broken engine fin for my 1000st, I bought my st years ago with two broken fins so the original pieces are long gone, the reason I wanted to shape and use bits of other fin is because they do taper and have more shape than you'd think!
Anyway long story short I visited my local scrapyard yesterday and found a big all alloy inner bumper, a bit overkill but they wouldn't cut off just a small piece for me! ;) I picked up a few other bits and it came to £5 !! So I've started the road of making a new fin, I'm not bad with a hacksaw but I'm a total amateur with files! I literally only use files to quickly take sharp edges of sawn off metal!
Although the thickness of the new alloy is mm perfect with the start of the fin near the head, just as I thought it tapers a fair bit and it's about a half mm too thick at the edge so I've got lots more filing to go!
Weather I stick with this or make another or maybe find a piece of actual fin the final stage will be drill tiny holes and join it to the head with little sewing needles and jb weld, lucky it's painted black so hopefully I can hide the repair okay. ..then do the same for the other busted fin on the other side of the motor!
Anyway here are some pics so far, it only took 40 mins of sawing and filing to get to this stage but it needs lots more! It's not right yet in a few areas and I won't stick it on till its 100% and if I can't achieve that I'll make another and another or even get hold of a broken fin so that lots of the work will already be done!
What do you guys think so far?? :)
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Making a new fin !! 23 Feb 2021 10:28 #843927

  • Sheath
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Update on the fin job! I've made a better shaped and thinner fin since the first one pictured, after a lot of filing I was pleased with its shape so I micro drilled 3 holes in it and glued in 3 sewing needles! I then dipped the needles in white paint and marked exactly where the fin will go on the head after drilling 3 holes in the head I glued the fin in place and mixed up some jb weld, lots of people like Swest and Bohica bob have convinced me that Jb weld is the best thing so I applied a good amount top and bottom and I left a spacer in between the fins then I couldn't help but make another fin there and then for the broken piece on the other side, I drilled and pinned that too ,all the same procedure, the shape and fitment of the second fin isn't nearly as good as the first one cos I rushed it a bit so I smeared on a lot more Jb weld and I'll have a lot of sanding to do! I'll get back to the bike on Saturday and start the sanding!! Wish me luck! :laugh:
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Last edit: by Sheath. Reason: Better pictures

Making a new fin !! 23 Feb 2021 10:29 #843928

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Some more pics!

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Making a new fin !! 24 Feb 2021 11:46 #844009

  • cb900f
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Why not just have the fin piece welded in then dress with a file?

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Making a new fin !! 24 Feb 2021 12:16 #844014

  • Sheath
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Hey cb900f, that certainly would be one way to skin a cat but in my case there are a few reasons why I've done it this way. ..
1.I can't weld and there are no specialists near me only people that would "give it a go"
2.my uncle had several fins welded on the many zeds and gpz,s he owned over the years and sooner or later they all detached themselves.
3.I've only made my piece of fin by eye, in real life it's fractionally thinner than the kawasaki fin would have been so I decided it needs a layer of filler that can be carefully sanded and finushed just right
And finally I love to have an idea and see it through myself, like I said I can't weld but I can pin things and filler and sand things and to my mind as long as I can get the final result I'm after and it's a good strong job then I'm happy, even if it is labour intesive! ! ;) I always appreciate the feedback though :)

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Making a new fin !! 27 Feb 2021 11:40 #844204

  • Sheath
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Well I think my little fin project is FIN-ished !:laugh: five days since I applied the Jb weld so this morning I sat on an upside down bucket then went through 80, 100, 800 1200 and 1500 grit, a few strange little holes appeared which I guess were bubbles so I got out my old top stop gold which I haven't touched in 13 years! I thought it would be solid but it was absolutely fine! After that dried I gave it more 12 and 1500 then I applied some pj1 satin black, I did the same to the fin on the other side in shifts which always works out well :)
I'd say the result is "acceptable " or adequate, the overall shape is okay, the smoothness is okay, there are still imperfections but nothing that'll keep me awake at night and it looks a little odd next to the flakey bubbly old finish on the rest of the motor, I really need to strip all the paint off the motor in the future and repaint it properly!
Anyway let me know what you guys think :) :)

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Making a new fin !! 27 Feb 2021 12:17 #844208

  • mopguy
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Nice job you did.
I have a 1980 Kawasaki KZ750 Ltd. I bought new. I recently managed to get it out of my garage after 28 years and put it on the road again (2010). I feel like a kid all over again. Since I have acquired 3 78 KZ1000 Ltd, 1 1981 KZ1000 Ltd, and another 1980 KZ750 Ltd. Love the LTD's.
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Making a new fin !! 27 Feb 2021 12:57 #844210

  • Sheath
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Thanks very much mopguy :) I'm not in the auto industry or anything and I don't do any kind of skilled work, just production line minimum wage work, so every job I undertake is very much trial and error and let's see what happens! But I am quite pleased with this job and hey its better than looking at this all the time! :laugh:
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Making a new fin !! 27 Feb 2021 18:00 #844219

  • TexasKZ
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Well done.
1982 KZ1000 LTD parts donor
1981 KZ1000 LTD awaiting resurrection
2000 ZRX1100 not ridden enough
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Making a new fin !! 28 Feb 2021 01:16 #844228

  • Sheath
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Thanks Texas kz :) next thing will be to strip all the paint off the motor then repaint! :)

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