I am gambling hard on that the cam chain tensioner parts will be ok. . . . . . . and that the two M8x43 bolts in the cam chain tunnel will not snap on my as they did the last time I swapped one of these gaskets some thirty years ago.
The tensioner is a pretty simple device. You may as well take it apart and replace the seals while the engine is coming apart.
Those cam chain tunnel bolts are finicky. I bought new one's when rebuilding my 750 but they wouldn't come up to the torque value in the service manual. I've got an expensive dial type torque wrench that's properly calibrated too. I've learned to trust my hands when torquing stuff like that so I just stopped turning when it was clear that the bolts were going to snap before reaching torque. Be careful!
In early November I finally got my shit together to take my “The Ebola bike” out to a friend’s garage to change my sweating cylinder head gasket. At that date we had already had a healthy blizzards that gave us a good 15 inches of snow, but as there was no cold the snow melted and gave me an opportunity to ride the bike to my friends garage.
With other mishaps in mind I didn’t get all dress up, first I went down in the garage under our condo, the bike looked good, could see no obvious problem, put the key in and it started immediately. Knowing that it run I switched it of right away and went up to my apartment and geared up. Racing leathers, down jacket, the lot and back down in the garage again.
When I got on the bike and pushed it of the center stand I realized that the clutch lever was not returning! Strange! Put my hand down and pushed the clutch arm with my fingers.
Something didn’t feel right.
That’s when I noticed the trail of little droplets that the bike was leaving.
Shit! after worrying sick this summer that my rusty tank, non-closing petcock, non-closing float needles would soak my engine it finally happened. Even after all the work I had put in trying to prevent it.
Dressed up and all, I rushed to push the bike out of the garage as the leaking now that turned in to gushing. Out of the garage I raced to get the tank of, not too much help as it by now was empty. So I could just sit back and see how the gas/oil was flowing out from under the transmission cover.
Damn I didn’t feel like rebuilding the engine from bottom up, just swap the head gasket.
Our Swedish version of Craigslist has during this summer been littered with all fucked up bobber versions of Gpz750 A1-A3 for cheaps, people has been asking 500 US and not been able to get them sold. So I thought that I better just see if I can pick up a sorry specimen with a running engine, swap it out and then be able to restore the original engine without stress.
So I posted a wanted add, now after running the add for two months I have only had two reply’s and they have both been from owners of pristine original bikes. Not the sorry hack jobs that I been looking for.
Like this one.
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Gpz750 A1 1983 12500 US miles (20000 km) first owner with complete documentation.
Slight corrosion on the mufflers, except for that in pristine condition.
I went to see it, mainly because the guy had a spare engine. Unfortunately that engine had just a little too much of the ignition side scraped of in order to be interesting.
So still no spare engine and by now it’s time to tear this baby down if I am going to ride her this summer.
If you see a sorry ass sticking up on the northern hemisphere turned to the east, it’s just me cursing myself for not following Nessism’s advice to stick to Kawa original spares for the petcock.
Unfortunately, Bobby (my painter) and I fucked up slightly, the decals ended up a little high so the ‘K’ in Kawasaki lettering folds slightly over the crest of the tank.
If life isn’t constant learning, what is it? So we took the weekend of from the workshop and went out to the Stockholm archipelago in order to deepen our knowledge in beer, great food and old bike war stories from the eighties and have now fully recovered and are ready to live the rest of our life with the ‘K’ folding slightly.
After we sobered up and thought this over, we contacted Zen Graphics in the UK . . .
Getting smaller transfers made? No problems!
Unfortunately it as become a bi%&h to buy stuff from the UK since they left the EU, it doesn’t help that the seller is quick as a lizard, now everything has to be cleared by customs and then held up for VAT clearance.