76 KZ400 "Grimy"

I went with the Ballistic 8-cell, looks like 4.6 aH and 225 CCA : http://www.ballisticparts.com/products/batteries/8cell.php

I've never had a problem getting it to turn over. I do put the trickle charger on it every once in a while when it sits, like it has most of this summer and fall unfortunately.

But the upside of not having much time to ride this year was because it was due to a move. We moved to a nice place with several acres and plenty of space to ride four wheelers and dirt bikes and a large pole barn that's slowly but surely turning into a well equipped shop with plenty of storage.
Thanks for the specs. So it looks like an electric start 400/440 with that size of aH will turn over. That CCA is waaay more than my current BikeMaster battery.

Its hard to find a smaller battery that matches the stock specs.

Edit: Update to my post. I didn't know the aH ratings compared from the two types of batteries.

From Ballistic website

How do you compare lithium amp/hour and cold cranking amp ratings to traditional lead acid ratings?

Ballistic Performance Components batteries are designed to be starter batteries. Lithium Ferrous Phosphate technology works really well as a starter battery because it is able to deliver a large amount of energy in a short period of time and then recover. This is why they can be made so much smaller and lighter than the lead-acid equivalent.

Lead-acid battery manufacturers have been using Amp-Hour (Ahr) ratings for years to indicate the cranking ability of their batteries. The Amp-Hour rating is a measure of how long a battery can deliver a specific current over the course of 60 minutes at a low discharge rate to half of nominal voltage. This rating has little to do with how a battery will actually start a vehicle. Because the rating itself is based on a complete discharge, under actual conditions the lead acid battery will deliver much less than the amp-hour rating. As a lead-acid battery discharges it begins to sulfate and its internal resistance increases. Also, discharging any battery to a complete discharge will damage it permanently.

A Ballistic Performance Components EVO2 battery will operate completely different. EVO2 batteries have significantly less internal resistance so they are able to discharge more of their capacity in a burst and still remain usable. Because the usable capacity is much greater than an equivalent lead-acid, a 6.9Ahr 12 Cell EVO2 is on par with a 20AHr lead acid battery in actual performance as a starter battery. To illustrate this, we use the rating of Pb-eq A/Hr or lead (Pb) equivalent (eq) Amp Hour (A/Hr). The lead acid equivalent amp/hour rating is a simple way to compare the starting capacity of a LiFePO4 battery with the starting capacity of a lead-acid battery.

Cold cranking amp (CCA) ratings for lead-acid batteries are a bit deceiving as well. CCA specs are based on amps delivered at zero degrees Fahrenheit half of nominal voltage. (7.2V). This isn’t a very useful rating as 7.2volts will not start a vehicle. What really starts a vehicle is current multiplied by available voltage (Watts). Once again, because a EVO2 has so much less internal resistance it is able to deliver more voltage for a given amp draw, and thus more usable starting power.
All batteries start to lose performance below 32°F (0°C), and LiFePO4 batteries tend to fall off more dramatically. When the temperature of the EVO2 goes below 32°F (0°C) internal resistance starts to build in the battery and the amount of available amperage goes down as well. This should lower the Cold Cranking Amp rating, correct?
No. LiFePO4 batteries have the ability to build their own internal heat energy when a draw is put on the battery. This means that although if may be 0°vF (-18°C) outside, the battery has the ability to raise its internal temperature to 58°F (14°C) in seconds with a 100amp draw. As the temperature rises inside the battery, internal resistance lowers and the battery performs just like it does when it is 60º°F (15°C) outside. This means that the amount of available amperage does not change based on temperature.
diggerdanh said:
... replaced the rear bumper and fit a rear cowl from a 78 kz400 in its place ...


Out of curiosity, how difficult is it to add a rear cowl from '78 to a '76? Does anything need to be fabbed or altered?
It doesn't fit quite right with the older seat pan but will work and look okay with a little tweaking. The biggest issue is that there is really no way to mount it to the older style frame. You can see that my way to do so was to drill holes through it and use the rear fender / turn signal holes to hold the cowl in place.
Latest updates include:

2.5" black speedo with integrated LED warning lights: hi beam, neutral, oil pressure, and turn signal
2.5" black tach
7" headlight and bucket with 35W H4 bulb
(All from Dime City Cycles)

New Motion Pro tach cable from Z1 Enterprises








I'm about done with this one now, at least cosmetically. It's time to start working on the 78. The only things I have remaining:

1. Strip the tank back and paint it. The raw look with some patina is okay but I'm getting a little tired of it. I'm thinking of a color combination either reminiscent of the 2-stroke H1/H2 (white with blue stripes?) or a combination similar to the GPz/early ninjas (blue base coat with Kawasaki green and red stripes) or I may just go silver.
2. Top end needs taken apart for new gaskets to fix several small oil leaks.
3. May still end up doing a hoop for the rear of the frame. I already have the rear hoop and some slugs to fit the frame - I would just need to find someone to weld it for me.
4. If I do the hoop then I'll probably build a nicer tracker-style seat.

By the way, if anyone has questions about wiring up the DCC 2.5" mini speedo and tach to the stock KZ400 wiring harness, I posted my findings here:
A few glamour shots taken as the sun was getting low in the sky after a short ride last night for some carb tuning.

Latest update was putting the front fender back on. I want to trim it but I can't decide where to cut it so I left it as-is for now.




Been a while since I've updated. Only major change was the addition of a gently used tank, new fuel cap, new K&N filter covers and a new pair of gaiters. Been riding it like this for about a year. Next up is a new set of gaskets for the top end after I finish putting together my newest project (a 78 KZ400b scrambler) which will get a thread of its own soon.


Ha. Glad you like them. These things are minty fresh - no way I would give them up. I liked them so much I rounded up another set, though nowhere near as nice looking, for my 78 KZ400 that I'm currently working on.
Re: 76 KZ400 "Grimy"

diggerdanh said:
Ha. Glad you like them. These things are minty fresh - no way I would give them up. I liked them so much I rounded up another set, though nowhere near as nice looking, for my 78 KZ400 that I'm currently working on.

I found the same ones on eBay! Brand spanking new. However these did not come with an extended bolt for the engine mount. Did yours come with that? I should be able to find the right bolt at Ace hardware no problem though.

Sent from my iPhone using DO THE TON
Luckily mine did come with all the mounting hardware and instructions too. Good luck finding the bolts. You ought to be able to find something suitable at a well stocked hardware store though you may need to also buy matching nuts - I don't know that you'll find metric in that length, especially not JIS spec.
Unfortunately I have only ridden this bike one one short trip this year. It ran great the the small oil leaks have gotten a lot worse over the last couple of years so they are not small anymore. It was time to tear down the top end and replace the gaskets. I had wanted to get the 78 KZ400 scrambler project finished first so I would always have a running bike. The 78 is almost completed but I still need to get exhaust created for it so I now have 2 non-running bikes in the barn. The top end teardown went quick and easy. The base gasket and head gasket were in really bad shape and pretty much crumbled. I can see where the bad leaks were. I had to order a few o-rings and a gasket kit and everything is reassembled now. When putting the caps back on that cover the valves I tightened one too much and snapped it in half. The threaded part came out easily enough but I had to order a new cap on Ebay this morning. Hopefully it gets here soon. I'll finish connecting all the electrical stuff and putting the carbs back on in the meantime. I'm praying there will be no more oil leaks.

I'll post pics and start the story of the 78 scrambler project soon. I wanted to get it finished or nearly finished before I started the thread. I didn't want it to be one of those threads that went on forever with long delays with a bike that never seemed to get finished. It was supposed to be a quick project, I figured it would get finished in a few months. It has now been 2 years and still not complete.
This 76 KZ400 is for sale. I now have 2 mid-70s KZ400s and I want to let one of them go so I can move on to other projects. It is currently listed on FB marketplace but I can put any additional info here. Give me a shout if you are interested.


Already has all the mods you would want to make. Perfect fr downtown streets or curvy back roads. Lots of stock, original parts but upgraded where it counts. Mikuni VM30s, MAC mufflers, electronic upgrades include modern fuse block, Ricks Motorsport regulator/rectifier, small lithium battery, Dyna coil, modern integrated mini gauges, electronic ignition from later KZ 400/440s, upgraded lights and signals, superbike bars, upgraded shocks, drilled front roter, original vintage Kawasaki case guards and more. Stylistically the bike has been generally trimmed down. New top end gasket kit and valve seals were installed 4 years ago - no leaks. I have had this bike for over 10 years and have a lot of time and money in it, more than what I am asking. I have one too many and this one must go. You must pick up or arrange pick up and delivery. Located near Middletown, OH.

Dan H
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