Kawasaki GPZ550 `88- restored and cafed -COMPLETED


New Member
Hi guys and girls,

I wanted to show you my Kawasaki GPz550 build.
The build is nearly completed, just a few details are missing (like a new and different modified sprocket cover).
Sadly I´m in Germany, where we are quite restricted with modifying. Everything has to pass a technical inspection, and every part needs papers :-[. But regardless, I think I´ve managed to build a nice, unique bike, which is quite far from the original.

I know you all like pictures, so less words, more pictures. If you have questions: ask.

This is how it looked like original

Here she is when I bought her:

12 preowners, not running, water in fueltank and carbs, several bad rattlecan and roller paintjobs (paint on everything including rubber, cable and engine). It was at least 8 years outside in the rain. Damage was worse than the images show, but all parts I needed were okay, so I bought her (after selling the exhaust I only payed 30€ ;D)

After 30min everything was removed, that wasn´t needed

First mockup; Fueltank and seat were the first things I bought. Without knowing if it could fit, but it did fit perfectly.

Frame cut and loop (bent to the form of the seat) weldet in.

Turned LED brakelight insert.

First testdrive. I was stoked, that everything worked perfectly... until the fuel was empty

After that I did the technical inspection and took everything apart. And I mean EVERYTHING! I sandblasted and painted every part separately and all bolts got zink coated black.

Engine before and after

gold painted parts

Customised wiring loom

Fitted a GSX-r shock. Fits perfectly and lifts the rear a bit (and it was so fucking cheap, even if its nearly brand new)

Aaaand putting it all back together

Selfbuild tach. I took the original rev counter and combined it with a Sigma bicycle tach. The plate is bass, which was painted and then engraved.

before I got the tanks and seat painted

selfmade seat from an old couch

wrapped exhaust pipes

okay, the Yamaha Logo will be replaced with a milled Kawasaki one. I experimented with leafgold. It looks so cool, I will also coat the Kawasaki logo with it

I´m quite stoked how it turned out. I never imagined it would end like that.

Greetings from Germany


'hacking is learning'
Very nice work and a beautiful bike. I'm glad to hear you are going to change the tank logo though.


New Member
Thanks guys.

Why does everybody hate the Yamaha logo? ;D
It´s quite funny at biker meet ups. Quite a lot people recognise the Xj550 fueltank, but are confused if they see "Kawasaki" on the engine or the mono shock. ;D


'hacking is learning'
Just opinion because I love Yamahas logos .. on Yamaha motored bikes. Stick a fork brace on it and call it done.


New Member
The exhaust is a non branded "Megaphone" style one from a german online shop.
I had to heavily modify the internals to get it quiet enough to get it street legal (a lot of glassfiber and a self build DB Eater were enough)

If you Google megaphone exhaust you should be able to find a similar one in the US


Life in slow motion at 110 mph
love how this came out, I have an affinity for the mid-80s zx750 that is similar to the GPZ. I like some of the styling cues you used and might try some of them on my current build.


New Member
hi, brilliant build!! quick question, what did you do about mouting clip ons? how did you go about removing the fork damper pipe and get the clip ons to work? thanks Liam


New Member
I removed the piping and the ring, that holds it in place.

To get the small hole in the forks closed, i threaded them, put epoxy glue on and put a small screw in. Sand the edges carefully down and you have the forks airtight.

If you slip the forks a bit through the triple trees (like me), the small screw will be hidden by the upper one.



I could agree with you but then we'd both be wrong
Very nice build. I'm always working on the smaller Gpz's
Like how it turned out!

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