modified, aftermarket, or custom. nothing is safe (78 KZ1000)


Oh the usual... I bowl, I drive around...
I have been posting over on KZ rider, but I also check out this site time to time so id thought id share here as well. Im still in the early stages of this build, it is my first ground up build, so alot of the 2 step forward 1 step back shuffle is going on.

A little history; I bought this bike when i was in college, fixed it up a bit and rode it. When i graduated i did 17,000 miles on it through the US and Canada. lots of gravel roads and jeep trails. Needless to say it got quite abused. (my poor kerker!) i limped home on low compression. My original intent was to rebuild the motor, but once i got the engine out, things started to get out of hand.

So I decided to go all out and build my dream bike. Im trying to keep the flavor of the original, but make it a bit sportier. I'm justifing the cost as an excuse to teach myself things i dont know. ;D

heres some pics of the build so far.

swapped wheels, excell rims, stainless spokes. first set of wheels i have ever built. I now find i really like building wheels and have built several sets for friends. also 530 chain conversion.

Works shocks




braced stock swingarm

custom headlight bucket with HID


frame mods, subframe raised, shock mounts lowered. the living crap braced out of it. Very disconcerting to be banking into a turn at 80+ and feel the frame twist, hopefully this will cure that along with beefed up engine mounts.








custom side covers. one set for pods, one set for airbox depending on what im running. vacuum bagged fiberglass layups for freshness.

for pods


for airbox

mold making process



Engine plans are: welded crank, undercut trans, wiseco 1075, mild cams, 29 smoothbores. MMMMMMM, moriwaki.

got a sweet deal on these ZRX forks so thats gonna happen soon.


Thats where im at. I have been distracted by this KZ650 project, but thats pretty much done, just waiting to get my paint back so i can tune the little guy and get him out of the way and roll the 1000 back in.

fury413rb said:
what color blue is on that 650? That is exactly what I am looking for
I have no clue on the blue. The side covers and tail are stock, the tank is a PO repaint, looked very purple in person. I was gonna wait to paint it but it was driving me crazy. My paint guy matched the color on the tail and i saw the sample its really close. I can post a photo and get you the paint code once i get it back

Joe Suzuki said:
Wicked fab skillz! I'm a sucker for dimple dies.

Thanks. I scored a set of dimple dies at an estate sale for $30. I fit all the tube and gussets but had my buddy Eric at Performance Welding in Bothell, WA weld them in. AS you can see from his beads this aint his first rodeo, my skills are no where near his.
got the tail and sidecovers trimmed to fit. Even with the coremat in the composite, a side cover weighs in at a scant 4.5oz. gotta start makeing up for the wieght i added with bracing somewhere ::) scheming on how i want to attach them and the seat

thanks guys. Sailing in unknown waters right now so alot of head scratching going on as each hurdle approaches, but i did get the seat pan made. i painted it black to help me visualize the lines the seat will create. side cover mounts are close to finished, pics soon.



I started reading this thread particularly for the "nothing is safe" tag in the subject line but... wow, was I ever pleasantly surprised.
Looks for all the world like you're building a superbike, similar to what I saw at Daytona / Mosport / Shannonville back in the 70's - great look and still practical enough for some serious road miles.
Lucky you, scoring some dimple dies - I had to get a machinist to make me up a couple - great way to get some serious stiffness in a flat piece of metal and save weight too.
You said you fitted up the new tubing yourself before getting your bud to do his magic welding - looks like you did an excellent job and isn't fishmouthing tubing fun?
Cool vacuum bagged parts and your comment re: coremat is right on - it can really add weight if you're not careful, which is why I don't use it. Your lightweight side panels made me wonder how light some of my stuff is, so I grabbed a set of Z1R side panels I made awhile back (wet layup, no coremat, no vac bag) and took them with me to the shop this morning to weigh on the shop scales. If I got my conversion from the metric system correct, 4.97 and 4.83 ounces respectively - so I'm wondering how much lighter you could make the covers without coremat?
Neat that your bike will be instantly recognizable as a Kawasaki but a keen observer should be awed at the amount of changes you've made and still keep the character of the bike.
A lot of excellent ideas for other builders to emulate.
Can't wait to see what paint scheme you come up with.
Great build.
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