3rd January 2019
I bought this Z1a off eBay in the US in Nov 2017. An interesting experience to say the least. Neil McCallum Shipped it over and it arrived in June 2018.Neil (being the top chap that he is) sorted out all of the documentation for us as part of the service.The best thing that can be said about it was that the engine and frame numbers matched. It was not pretty, but was complete, I hesitate to put up the photos of what it was like, but what the heck!As this project shows, the best thing about restoring a Z1 is that there is very little that you cant get for them if you need it.If you have read any of the previous blogs, you will know that we use all of the same / usual suspects for the restorations. The engine bits have been cleaned by Steve Smethurst (Steve's Web Site) and Dave has rebuilt it.The bores were OK but just to be sure we have taken the bores out to first over-size and fitted one of our piston kits (piston kit - first over size).The head has been reconditioned by Paul at Engine Tekniks (Engine Tekniks web site). Dave's top tip - We find it much easier to put the engine in the frame without the head on.Pete Brown of Classic Motorcycle Service (CMS Website) sorted out the zinc plating and has built up the wheels for us on our aftermarket rims. We have gone for a double disk - it is what most people want.Steve has also polished up the fork legs - which we have then rebuilt. We are going to do it in its original US spec trim so it has got reflectors on the forks (fork reflector) rather than the chrome ones that go on the European models (Chrome reflector).Alistair Marshal (01827 63328) has done the clocks for us again and put the same millage on that was indicated on what was left of the speedo (clearly - it cant be authenticated).If you have read the previous blogs - it all sounds a bit repetitive. You will have noticed that we are still missing the frame though.As we always do, we took the frame to Roger to put in his jig; it needed just a little straightening (as they often do), we then took it to Tony at Pit Stop (Pit Stop web site) for a few minor repairs. All that sorted (it takes much longer than you may think) it is now with the powder coaters; it should be back this week and we can start putting it back together.So the frame is back!!!!So Now the fun starts. Next up will be putting the engine back in.The bike is now taking shape. We fitted the engine in, fitted the front end and the rear swing arm, shocks and put the wheels in. We have put the twin disc set up on it.All the electrics have been replaced and all new switch gear fitted.New fenders and brakes fittedOnce we have the Carbs back, put the head on and the paint set has arrived, we will be about there.It is tempting to put the Z1b/A4 switch gear on and same some money, but we have gone for the correct early Z1 switches that we get in from PMC (Z1 switches)We are going to use the green/yellow paint set from Japan.Like the Z1, the Z1a came with an oil pump and tank - not that it is really needed with modern chains.we have now bled the brakes throughand applied the decals (Z1 decal set) and put a tool kit (tool kit) in the tray (replacement Z1 tool tray)Now getting to the point where we just need to put the carbs on and fit the exhausts.Paint set complete, we have just got to fit the carbs and the seat.And that's it - job done. Now need to get a few miles on it and make sure that it all works.
1st December 2018
We have been offered a very early 1972 Z1 from one of our suppliers, built in November 1972.Not very often these come along so we bought it right away....The engine and frame number match and it is relatively early (making it a "made in 1972") model.FRAME NUMBER: Z1F-02893 ENGINE NUMBER: Z1E-02884REG NUMBER IS: EVN 734L NOVEMBER 1972Mostly complete but there a few odd rare parts missing which will give us a bit of a challenge.You will notice the wrong forks fitted which we will have to replace with the original type.I have taken the head and barrels off to check that they are right and it still has the early ones with the one piece head gasket that are consistent with the early models.And the head is lovely and clean. You never know what you are going to get when you take these to bits.We will have to pay particular attention to this rebuild, it is imperative to use all the right early parts to make sure it is as original as possible. This is the only way of making sure it is worth the big money that people are paying for them.We have already ordered a paint set in the brown and orange from our supplier in Japan The frame has gone to Tony at PITSTOP motorcycles (01942 684684) for him to give it a once over, making sure all the threads are OK and touching up some of the poor welds. Once he finishes with it then it will be off to get checked for any twists and bends it may have gotten over the last 47 years.The motor has been striped and taken to Steve Smethurst for a cleaning and polishing job. The main part of the motor will be black of course but we still have it deep cleaned by Steve.A few odd bits have gone to the Chrome plater and Pete Brown as got all the Re-zincing parts.Alistair Marshall has already done us a set of early 72 Z1 clocks with all the correct odd numerals.14/02/2019Well the chrome plating has come back, We asked them NOT to polish out the date code from the rear torque arm which luckily they did`nt....The Zinc plating also came back and Steve Smethurst returned us the engine components as well along with the rear hub and sprocket carrier.Just the polishing to pick up now..... We can now start to prepare the engine for the Satin black engine painting. There will be a lot of masking off to sort out first......25/02/2019We got the polishing back from Steve Smethurst, all looks good.The front wheel hub also came back from the powder coaters, so we fitted new bearings/seals/spacers to it and also to the rear hub.The wheels rims with the correct date stamping also turned up from the platers, so i can get Pete Brown to rebuild the wheels now using new spokes and the gold coloured nipples.The rims are stamped 2J, which is October 1972, which is a month before the bike was built at Kawasaki, so this is correct, they are always a month or so before build date.DATE CODE ON RIMS
Z1B - RED 1975
27th June 2018
The new project has arrived.Not too sure whether it is a good idea to post a picture of the "before", but here it is anyway. You used to be able to pick up something like this for reasonable money, but we paid 4 1/2 grand for this !!There are no prizes for guessing that it is a US import (the seat and the bars are a bit of a giveaway) BUT it is red, and we do want to do a red one next...We are not going to use that lovely exhaust or the seat - let me know if you want it......Cant believe that I haven't updated this since the end of Nov. I guess that Xmas got in the way. Well we pulled the bike to bits. The frame is still away to be put in a jig and checked as true but all of the engine bits and other shiny stuff has been to Steve Smethurst (Steve's Web Site). If you are as sad as us here at Z-Power, picking up all of that cleaned and polished aluminium from Steve is a bit like Xmas - but better. Someone had lock-tighted the exhaust studs into the head - which was nice but Steve sorted this out for us. Rather than show lots of engine bits, thought it might be a change to show some of the people that do the work - so here's Dan who does most of the work down at Steve's.Next trip was to take the head/barrels etc to Paul at Engine Tekniks (Engine Tekniks web site). For those that have not been, you always get a warm reception off Paul...The most common source of oil consumption is the valve guides; Paul will check the tolerance on everything and no doubt re-sleeve the valve guides. We drop the complete top-end off with Paul (Valves, springs, cams) and he rebuilds the head and returns it to us all shimmed up. Saves a lot of time and effort (it is impossible to get it spot on until it is torqued down and on the bike so we will check it when build it and usually need to change a few of the shims to get the clearance spot on). We also give him the pistons and barrels to ensure that they are within tolerance also.If you are doing this work yourself, or farming it out to someone who needs to know what the tolerances are then they are available from the web site as a free download (Z900 workshop manual). It has all the important stuff in it for example, Piston to cylinder clearance, 0.060 - 0.079 mm and ring end gap, 0.2 -0.4 mm with a service limit of 0.7 mm)There was a little damage on one of the side panels so rather than go for a paint job from Dream Machine (the last one was fab) I ordered the paint set (Paint Set) early from Japan last year and it has arrived already. All of the Z! colour schemes are available (sadly not the locking fuel tank ones for the A4/Z1000); the lead time can be a bit long on these sometimes but they must have had a red one in stock, I hope that Phil doesn't find it or he will probably sell it.If you are thinking of going down this route, the quality is outstanding; if you are in the area call in and have a look.On checking the crank cases we spotted a bolt snapped off where the clutch cover goes (one of the most common places with those long bolts always a bit vulnerable). Well it looked like a snapped bolt but closer inspection suggested that someone had attempted to drill out the bolt and snapped a drill in there. At this point we use our "get out of jail" chap and go to see Tony at Pit Stop (Pit Stop web site). When it comes to stuff like this, we look on Tony as a genius and although he specializes in Yamaha RDs (as evidenced by the couple of RD 400 motors in the background), we don't hold it against him. Dont ask me how he did it, but he has returned them with a new insert.Pete Brown of Classic Motorcycle Service (CMS Website) turned up today. He had the right shirt on today...He gave me a ticking off for not restoring the starter solenoid on the last one Z1b, so.....He did this one for me.There is no end to what Pete can do; he will do a full bike restoration, just the engine, or just the parts that you need (switch gear, disks etc etc). He charges £60 to do a full strip down and restore on the solenoid, and they come back like this. If you take your side panel off and it looks a bit of a tatty, then get in touch with Pete - you will not meet a nicer chap.Pete also brought the zinc plating back, so we could put the bottom end back together.We also put the forks back together with new fork tubes (Fork Tubes) and Top bolts (Fork top bolts). As it happens, these had been rebuilt with progressive fork springs - it was what was in the bike when we got it. In theory should improve the ride a little.The top end is still with Paul, the frame is not back yet, and Dave is off to the US to ride a Harley for 3 weeks - it could be a bit before the next update.Well I am back from sunning myself and Dave is Back from riding a Harley across the US - now he has a bad back. He is claiming it is the Hog's fault but we have a different theory..... Paul has done the cylinder head...As you can see - it is a thing of beauty. The barrels are well within tolerance and freshly honed .The rings were just within tolerance, but for the sake of £100, whilst it was all in bits we thought it well worth putting a new set on (Z900 Pattern rings). The cam chain (Cam Chain), roller (Roller) and guide (Front Guide) we all replaced along with all of the rubbers (top idler rubbers idler rubber set) - these go hard over time and are well worth replacing to help damp down the idlers. Consistent with the low mileage the bike has on it, thankfully the idlers were all OK (even using our Liska racing ones (Liska Idler) increases the cost of an engine rebuild.Now that the engine back together I need to chase up the frame from the jig, straightness checking then we can crack on with putting the bike back in one piece.The frame is still not back from the powder coaters; they are very busy. The clocks are back from Alistair Marshal (01827 63328); I know that it is more expensive that using patent clocks and I am doing ourselves out of some sales (Tacho) (Speedo), but he does such a good job....We have also rebuilt the wheels. Going for the double disk setup again (we do a double disk conversion if you want to improve your braking [Full double disk], using our patent disks [Z1 disk] and replica spokes [spoke set] and will fit out patent calipers [Z1 Caliper]. The tab washers re-zinc plated up OK, so saved a few quid on new tab washers [tab washers].Decided to fit our original Dunlop tyres [Z1 Tyres]; this is always a tough call, if you are going to use it seriously then modern rubber certainly helps, but if you want the authentic look then the original tyres are a must.This time we have used our replica rims [Z1 rims]; getting wheel rims re-chromed is very expensive and unless the original ones are in good condition, they don't always come back as well as you may hope. The patent ones are a less expensive option and you do at least know that they will be "true". These have no visible stamping (like the DID ones) but you do need to remember that the back rim does not have any holes for the tyre grabbers [Grabbers].The carbs went to Paul Benton (07800 985123) for a full restoration. As ever, they come back looking like new and ready to bolt on to the bike. If you want Paul to do a restoration for you, just give him a call.Still waiting for the powder coater to finish the frame - hopefully next week.....Well the frame and the powder coating is back, just need to find the time to put it back together.It has been very busy at Zpower, but we have had a free hour or so this afternoon, so the engine is back in the frame. It is much easier to lower the frame over the engine - one of the benefits of getting the engine done first.The bike came with a Boyer ignition on it - we have left it on - it may work....I think that half of our customers must go to the TT, so it has been a little quite and we have had the chance to try and finish it off.We bolted some old exhausts on and it started first time - so the Boyer will stay on (when we have worked out the best place to mount the box). We will run it for a bit on the bench and see what leaks before putting the exhausts on and trying it out on the road.The seats are back in stock (Phil pinched the last one t hat was on it for a customer that was in a desperate rush) so now we just need ten mins to bolt the left hand exhaust on and fit the tank and we can see what it runs like on the road.Well we found some time over the weekend to come in and finish it off.Just need to put some fuel in the tank and find a volunteer to take it out and put a few miles on it.We have taken it out and iron a few wrinkles out of it; just a couple of things remain to be adjusted and it will be available for sale. Given that the last one went for £20,000.....then I guess this one will be a similar price....This is still available - let us know if you are interested.
New Bike Restoration - Z1B
17th October 2017
It has been a long time since we have done a restoration project and prices have changed a bit...in the wrong direction of course......... BUT.............We have bought a US import 1975 Z1-B off Rick Brett for £4,500. It feels like a lot of money, more than twice what we normally pay for a donor bike, but it is a very good example with low mileage and very little wear and is virtually complete, it even had the original tool kit. It has now been pulled to bits - the frame is away at our good friend Roger, to put it in his jig to make sure that it is straight. You can't be too sure, even if it has not been dropped in the last 40 years, I am not sure that they were all true off the production line anyway... The engine and other alloy bits are with Steve Smethurst to be cleaned and polished.We already sent the clocks to Alistair Marshal (01827 63328) to be refurbished and have got them back already. Excellent job of course...It is more expensive than buying our replica clocks (Tacho) (Speedo)but thought it worth keeping the ND on the bottom of the dial for the Z1B. Always worth using a fitting kit though (fitting kit)Next decision is what to do with the wheel rims. We have now got our Z1/Z900 wheel rims in stock which are finished (triple chromed etc) in the UK and don't have any markings stamped on them but the original Takasako date stamped rims are in very good condition. After much deliberation, we have bitten the bullet and re-chromed the rims in an attempt to keep the bike as authentic as possible. The original date stamps matter very much these days...The original rubber will have to be replaced, but again, we will need to decide whether to go for some modern rubber (that works) or go for the original look with our original Dunlop Gold Seal tyres (Dunlop tyres)When the frame comes back from straightening, blasting and powder coating, I will start to log the progress on the build. Please keep coming back and checking up on it....******************************************************************************************************************************************We got news today that the rims are ready for collection, so we can get on with rebuilding the wheels soon...We got the engine back from Steve Smethurst this week (Monday 21st Aug) - so the bottom end can go back together (I cant remember the last time I saw one this clean)Dave - trying to remember just how many of these he has done (he has lost count) - putting the finishing touches to it.Tues 22nd Aug - With the frame also back we can get it ready for the engine with all the original re-zinc plated nuts and bolts. With getting it ready for the Stafford show in mind, and to speed up the rebuild (and keep the lifting to a minimum at our age) we put the bottom end in the frame and carry on putting the rest of the bike together. For me - it beats lowering the frame over a complete rebuilt engine.Not bad - we got all the bits back on Tuesday - by close of play Weds it is beginning to take shape. So much more fun putting it all back together - and much cleaner. The bike ran fine before we took it to bits and, given its low mileage and in the spirit of keeping it as original as is practical, the factory fitted, original grey coils have gone back on - if you look closely you may still see the 1 to 4 number clips on the leads. We have some of the metal plug caps lined up to replace the ones currently fitted. You cant see it, but it also still has the original 3 locks all operated by the one Kawasaki keyIn the same vain, the original electrical components have gone back on the bike also (they will be tested to make sure that they still work OK).Thurs 24th - Colin Smith (our wheel builder) has taken them away, remembered to take a photo of them before they went - nice re-chroming Sean.Thought it worth getting everything else ready to go back on - so it is all been cleaned just to show how complete the bike is, worth showing what was in the tool bag - even the feeler gauges are still there.Phil has taken a couple of days leave, so we have raided the parts bins (good job he doesn't read this blog !) and made some real progress. When we get the wheels back from Colin and the barrels and Head back from Engine Tekniks [in Westhoughton - 01942 840818] (Paul honing the barrels and checking out the head/valve guides). Phil is now trying to carry higher stock levels to avoid keeping people waiting; this was a good test and we have got all of the bits we needed in stock.We are well on course for getting it done for the Stafford Show, bit worried that the paint set wont arrive in time from Japan so we asked Andy from Dream Machine to drop in tomorrow (25th Aug) to pick up the original paint set to put it back to a blue Z1-B colour scheme for us. It is all in good condition, much better than the usual stuff we give him.We have decided to go for a double disk set up, our replacement twin disk brake splitter is already on (brake junction), all of the other bits needed for the double disk set up are in stock ready to go on when the wheel is back. We usually have the double disk kit in stock (double disk). Most people want to replace the existing disk and caliper to avoid it looking a bit odd; if you want to keep your existing disk/caliper drop us a line and we can give you a price. Sadly - disks and calipers are only available for the Z1/Z1a/Z1b and the triples. You cant get them for the Z900 A4 and the Z1000s that followed. The calipers don't fit and they reduced the number of holes to fit the disk on the wheel hub.We are just being held up by not having any fork oil in - we don't stock it...... The front end can be completed once the oil is in the forks and the new fork tops tightened down.Four days after getting the bits back, and just working on it a few hours each day (after the phone stops ringing) the bike is beginning to look like a Z1b again.We are torn between using our Z-Power replacement parts and sticking to the original bits. Things like the wiring loom (Z1 loom), rear shocks (shocks) just aren't worth the risk of using 40 years old bits. Other parts, like the grab rail (grab rail), mud guards (rear fender) (front fender), rear brake pedal (pedal), headlight brackets (right) (left) the replica parts are so close to the original it is not worth the cost of re-chroming. Forty year old rubbers are usually rather perished and replacing them is the best option (rear fender kit) (rear light) (electric plate) (headlight) (footrest) - one of the joys of restoring a Z1 is that nearly all of the parts are still available. Make sure that you look out for our kits - it is cheaper than buying them individually. There are some bits that are still available from Kawasaki that you may not expect, like the indicator lenses (lens) tail light lens (tail light) that are worth fitting if you want it to stand out; especially if you are going to show the bike - the markings on the lenses are easy to spot as original parts by the judges......One of the reasons for doing the restoration is to use our parts and get first hand experience of making sure that they work, so we do tend to lean in that direction more than some of the professional restorers out there (if you don't feel up to doing this yourself and want a restoration - call Pete Brown - 07932 931340). If he is too busy, drop us a line, there are a few other people out there we a re happy to recommend. I am keeping an account of all of the bits that we have taken out of stock - I will have to confess to Phil at some point. When we have finished I will load up the list to the blog so you can see what it costs to do a rebuild like this. Bearing in mind the good condition of this bike - it will be cheaper than most - all the engine internals (idlers etc) were in good condition and saved a lot of cost.The swinging arm and fittings are now in. As with many of the bolts, the rear shock bolts (rear shock bolts) are new. We get them all zinc plated but if someone has been heavy handed with the spanner and chewed them up, they just don't look the part. The chrome ones on the front yokes are also a must to replace and relatively inexpensive bottom yoke bolt set top yoke pinch bolts top yoke bolt set top yoke cable guides . Again, the beauty of the old z900/1000 is that we do most of the bolts for them.Most of this is the original stuff on the rear wheel has been re-zinc plated, except the brake rod. Even though the original is in good condition, we have used one of our patent brake rod assembly kits (Brake Rod), the housings for the rod are alloy and the zinc plating process "eats" them. Dave has left a tip for cleaning up the bits that go back on - we must have got through a dozen tins of brake cleaner at least.Another testament to how good the bike was, the original oil pressure rubber cover has cleaned up a treat. The alternator cover has been sealed up and we have put a standard gasket on it. We use our gasket sets for all of the other gaskets but splash out on a genuine Kawasaki one for this - it is always a favorite place for an oil leak and some good quality oil based silicone on the rubber and the genuine gasket give you the best chance of getting a good seal. We have put one one of our new alternator covers; they don't come with the black on them so another tip from Dave is to use a tyre pen to colour it it.Now just need the wheels back in, the top end on and the paint back and we are ready for the show - not bad for a week's work.Into Sept now - the wheels are back and ready to go on. Rebuilt with our aftermarket spokes [Spoke set]The Head is back from Engine Tekniks, it is very low millage (you can see - it looks mint) but Paul still considered that 4 of the valve guides needed sleeving. Always worth checking, if it is going to smoke, the valve guides are the most likely cause. Paul (being the perfectionist that he is) also insisted on removing any marks from the face of the head with a light grind and seated the valves for us. He checked that all of the valves were within tolerance and declared that 2 of the inlets were slightly bent. Just a little alarming - the bike ran fine before we took it to bits but it just goes to show that it is worth checking these things. Two new inlet valves get added to the cost of the rebuilt. The barrels were well within tolerance and have just been honed.Steve Smethurst had the rear brake hub polished up for us, the lever, we had re-chromed; the decal from our set [warning decal set] adds the finishing touchIt is nice when the shiny bits start going back on; must admit that the starter motor cover is the original one polished up, not one of replica parts (we sell lots of these - they are not worth re-chroming) [starter motor cover], but we fitted a new rubber gasket [starter motor gasket]. 40 year old rubber doesn't work so wellThe rebuilt wheels have had our original tyres fitted [dunlop tyres] and new chain and sprocketsAnd the twin disk set up is all fittedDave always prefers to set the valve clearances up on the bench; starting with a set of 8 200 shims you can work out what is required to get the clearances right and then put the correct shims in. It is the "just" a case of bolting it all back together.With it bolted on it just needs timing up. As said earlier, we have used a set of out patent metal plug caps to keep it looking as original as possible, they are on offer at present [Metal plug caps]Cam chain timing set - it all turns over so engine done. We considered using our replacement carb clamps ([small clamps] [big clamps], but the original ones were in good condition and Pete Brown gets them zinc plated olive (like the original ones were) - it does set it off nicely. Just got to put the carbs in now - never a nice job but easier than it is on the A4/Z1000.It is now beginning to look like a bike again. Just carbs, exhaust and the paint set to go. You just know that the carbs are going to be a problem - they always are. Normally we send them away for a complete restoration, Paul Benton has done the last few sets for us. This time, the carbs are in such good condition we have just cleaned them up, replaced the bowl gaskets (Float Bowl Gasket) with our patent ones (they are half the price of the genuine ones). Fingers crossed for when we fuel it up......With the pipes (Z900 replica exhaust system) on is is now very nearly complete - just waiting for the paint set and the seat.The seats are back it stock - not often we run out (Z1 seat) (note - it is different to the one on the 1975 Z900 A4) (Z900A4/Z1000 seat)The brackets were all there for the steering damper (steering damper) so it seemed a shame not to fit one (although I am sure that it will not need one with the taper head bearings)The paint set is back from Dream Machine - mint as ever. The bike is now all back in one piece. It started on the first press of the starter (always a relief) but is clearly running on the rich side so now just need to put the colour tune on it and adjust the air screws. We will be taking it to The Stafford show if you want to see it (and make us an offer???)I will add up what the entire project has cost and put it on the blog just for the interest of anyone that is thinking of doing one, or buying one that has been done. Well we added it up - most sobering, not much change out of £11k. We took the bike to Stafford.Lots of interest; but someone saw it on the web site and offered the full asking price. We may start another one soon.......
NEW PRODUCT: S+KH-SERIES FORK TUBES
23rd July 2017
A PAIR OF REPRODUCTION INNER FORK TUBES FOR THE FOLLOWING MODELS: S2A-350 S3/S3A-400 KH250B KH400A (ALL THE MODELS WHICH HAD A FRONT DISC BRAKE).COMES WITH A PAIR OF NEW FORK TOP BOLTS AND O`RINGS.ALSO INCLUDED ARE THE REMOVABLE BOTTOM BUSHES.ESPECIALLY MADE FOR US HERE AT Z-POWERPRICE IS FOR TWO (PAIR)£150.00BUY THEM HERE.....
NEW PRODUCT: Z650B1 WIRING LOOM
20th July 2017
WIRING LOOM Z650B1 1976-1977 REPRODUCTION PART 26001Z650B1 This is a replica MAIN wiring loom for the Z650B1 models only. 1976-1977Made in the UK to a very high spec.....YOU WONT FIND BETTER...(LIMITED STOCK, MAY TAKE A WEEK OR SO TO DELIVER)£349.00BUY IT HERE
19th July 2017
Yipee !!!!!.................. The new web site is up and running.....So far So Good......Please let us know what you think about it......Every little helps!thankssuperdave
Stafford show 2017
14th July 2017
STAFFORD SHOW 2017