Kawasaki Z650 Seventies Special

teazer

Well-Known Member
DTT BOTM WINNER
Fun idea. The Goose MFP seat was a copy or modified Vesco Big Butt seat. Fairings came from Frenchman Bertrand cadart who was living in Melbourne at the time and they were sold under LaParisienne brand.

For some reason, that I no longer recall, for a while I had the original LaParisenne trade show fairing complete with a painted frog where the headlamp should have been. I think it came with a R5 project I picked up, but that was a long time ago in a galaxy far far away....

Best tail on a Kwaka back then was a Z650. Maybe not as iconic as a Z1 but better shape IMHO.
 

Bevelheadmhr

Active Member
DTT BOTM WINNER
Interesting info about the French connection. I always thought the Mad Max bodywork looked similar to that of the French endurance racers of the time. Though if I went in that direction, I'd go for the Toecutter version, but without the faring lowers. Though by the time I'd paid import duty, VAT and postage, the Airtech bodywork would be very expensive.
 

spotty

Vmax...why,yes i think i will
just read the other week that bertrand is not long for this world, shame, interesting ( and possibly slightly mad ) bloke
 

Bevelheadmhr

Active Member
DTT BOTM WINNER
There are a few unexpected problems with trying to fit early Z1 bodywork on a 650 frame, one of which is that the fuel tap will have to be moved forward as it hits the longer Z1 side panels. Widening the frame by 50mm to fit the bigger 1100 engine and modern running gear doesn't help matters either.

As I mentioned above the Z1 tail piece was too narrow to fit over the widened seat rails, and it was too good to cut it up to try to make it fit, while being made out of ABS would've made it difficult to modify. Instead I bought a cheaper fibreglass Z1 tail piece, and promptly cut it in half. It fits ok when the two halves are angled in the pic below, but not sure yet what the best looking
IMG_8548.JPG
option of positioning them before I fibreglass them back together.
 

Bevelheadmhr

Active Member
DTT BOTM WINNER
The outrigger bearing support is coming along nicely. though the lovely Oberon clutch slave cylinder I bought wont quite fit, pity as it cost £100. Since the engine originally had a cable clutch, I went for a ZRX1200 slave, as then I could fit ZRX master cylinders to match. Oh well, lesson learnt. Seems I should've gone for a ZXR750 unit, as its got a smaller 2 mounting bolt body rather than the ZRX 3 bolt body. In the pic the block is missing, as its gone off to be bored out by a mm to fit the larger pistons (72.5 to 73.5mm).
IMG_8602.JPG
 

Bevelheadmhr

Active Member
DTT BOTM WINNER
The outrigger support bearing set up is almost done now, just need to get a new gasket so we can machine the inner plate to its final shape. The gearchange shaft normally just passes through the standard alloy cover, which eventually wears and gives a soppy gearchange. We have made this version so the gearchange shaft will sit in a roller bearing (not fitted in the pic) as it passes through the outer plate.

IMG_8709 (2).JPG
IMG_8710.JPG
 

Bevelheadmhr

Active Member
DTT BOTM WINNER
I collected the block from the machine shop with its 1mm over size re bore, and then made a start on the engine cases. My original idea was to have everything vapour blasted.. cases, cylinder black, head etc, the work to be done by a local specialist. But it turns out vapour blasting isn't powerful enough to remove the original black finish, therefore the parts would have to be 'dry blasted' first, which costs more money, ok I thought, needs must etc. But I was surprised to be told that they couldn't dry blast the engine cases, as their blasting cabinet wasn't big enough. I was advised to go elsewhere to get the cases blasted and once the OE black finish was removed, then take it to back to be vapour blasted..

Well, I was in two minds about having a raw alloy finish anyway, so I decided to keep the engine black. Which in turn meant I needed to paint it... easier said then done..

Having been recommended Simoniz Tough paint, I bought a few cans of satin black (not cheap at £9 each), and made a start on the cam cover and sump. The former didn't need much prep and didn't take long, while the sump needed a lot more work to strip off the old black finish..
 

Attachments

Bevelheadmhr

Active Member
DTT BOTM WINNER
That done, I turned my attention to the engine cases, having bought 5l of Gunk to hopefully make the job a bit easier. I don't know if modern Gunk has changed over the years, but it proved to be pretty useless in removing the old oil and grease from the cases. I found washing up liquid worked better, though after hours scrubbing away with tooth brushes and wire brushes, I had to admit I didn't seem to be getting very far. The problem is that the old oil seems to be hard baked to the surface, and is almost impossible to remove, particularly in between the cooling fins.

What I needed as to have them bead blasted, and as luck would have it I know a man with such a set up, who'd let me use it, for a packet of biscuits or two. However, I do have a slight worry that after all the time spent prepping, masking and painting the cases, the end result wont be durable enough to last unscathed in use.

Therefore I'm now considering having the cases and block ceramically coated, I've worked on an engine before which had this finish, and I was impressed how tough it is. its not a cheap option.. checking the nearest shops website.. 4cyl cases are £250 and a cylinder block £65. Decisions decisions..
IMG_8796.JPG
 

Bevelheadmhr

Active Member
DTT BOTM WINNER
I took the cases and newly machined block to a local specialist (www.camcoat.com) where they will be given a high tech very tough coating. I wanted satin black, but it was only available in gloss black, so that's what they are having. This meant that my newly painted satin black cam cover, sump etc had to repainted to match. Pity, but thy would look odd left as they were. I used Simoniz engine enamel which gave a good finish, though no idea how durable it will be in use. But if needed, it'll fairly easy to remove them in the future and have those parts treated in the same way as the cases and block. While the cylinder head will probably be vapour blasted and left unpainted.

IMG_8832 (2).JPG
IMG_8834.JPG
 

Bevelheadmhr

Active Member
DTT BOTM WINNER
Finally collected the cases and block with their new ceramic gloss black finish. Not a cheap option, and the finish isn't as smooth as paint or powder coat, but it is supposed to be very tough. There are still many engine parts that I need, such as a cam chain, cylinder studs, carbs, ignition and so on, but I took what I had to my mate who will be building the engine for me.

After careful inspection, he found a problem with the upper engine case.. it had a tiny crack around one of the bearing locating pins, not something that could be ignored.. sigh..

But (fingers crossed) it can be welded and machined to fix the problem..

IMG_8975.JPG
IMG_8991.JPG
 

pidjones

Well-Known Member
I'd reassemble the cap to it and have the bore checked for out-of-round. The gloss should clean a bit easier than satin, but also show dirt faster.
 

Bevelheadmhr

Active Member
DTT BOTM WINNER
Yes the cases will be checked carefully after the repair. The first part is now done.. the broken area has been ground away back to solid metal, and rebuild with weld. Next, the case needs to go on a Horizontal miller to machine the surface back to standard, and be drilled to take the locating pin. I pick up the case on Monday, and hope to have the machining one next week, but with the lock down it may take longer..

Zedcasefix0.jpg
Zedcasefix4.jpg
 

Bevelheadmhr

Active Member
DTT BOTM WINNER
The repair to the upper crankcase went ok, and the engine build could move forward. It didn't take long before we hit another problem.. some of the case hardening on the crankshaft had worn away, so that crank couldn't be used. But a second crank was found, that my mate Jeff had rebuild awhile ago, and that went into the engine. Now waiting for parts to arrive (APE head bolts etc) before the block can go back on.

In the meantime, I set about the tedious job of polishing the engine covers.. Only to find the points cover was cracked, and the clutch cover had a weird shallow dent in it. No idea how it got there as there's no other damage on the cover. Someone thought the original bike had crash bars fitted and in a crash the bars bent and hit the cover.

I decided against using these covers, and instead of hitting Ebay for used covers, or buying some cool aftermarket version, I'd have my mate Jeff make them for me. I liked the one I'd seen on one of his projects, so mine will be similar, but not quite the same. Just ordered all the alloy plate to make them. The alternator cover would be harder to replicate, so for now the engine will be getting a standard cover. So I guess I cant avoid polishing that one.

IMG_9131.JPG
 

Bevelheadmhr

Active Member
DTT BOTM WINNER
After the problem with the cracked upper crankcase, the engine build is progressing ok. The bottom end is together, and now we're just waiting for parts to arrive, such as APE cylinder studs, cam chain adjuster blades etc. The block and pistons are all ready to go on the cases, while the head still needs to be checked over. My mate who is building the engine wants to send the head off to a local drag race tuner to be gas flowed etc, but not sure a road engine really needs all that.
 

Bevelheadmhr

Active Member
DTT BOTM WINNER
With most of the parts arrived, the bottom end could go together, and with the heavy duty APE cylinder studs in place, the block could go on next. In the pic that was about to happen. With that done, attention turned to the head.. and more headaches..

The head is from a bike imported from the US, and its had a hard life. Some idiot in the past had used a too long bolt in one of the cam caps, which cracked the head immediately below the bolt. Once again, the damage had to be ground away and weld used to build up the area, before being shaped back to original (still not finished), see the pic with the arrow below. In addition a couple of the cam cap threads were damaged... a common problem it seems, so all sixteen threads will be heli-coiled.

But the problems don't end there... all the valves, valve guides are worn, and so will need replacing. While the valve seats will need to be recut too. Its all turning into an expensive rebuild. Though compared to Ducatis and Harleys the parts prices aren't to bad. Given the engine parts are around 40 years old, its not really a surprise they need so much work. When its all finished, the engine should be good as new, if not better.

IMG_9352.JPG
IMG_9358.JPG
 

DTT Bike Of The Month Gallery

DTT Light or Dark

www.cognitomoto.com
https://www.townmoto.com
www.speedmotoco.com
www.jadusmotorcycleparts.com
www.lostapostle.ca/
www.sparckmoto.com
Top Bottom