Kawasaki Z500 B2 1980 refurb after 78260 miles

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linuxrob
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Kawasaki Z500 B2 1980 refurb after 78260 miles

#1 Post by linuxrob » Sat Oct 20, 2018 1:40 pm

Afternoon all,

Having read quite a few project reports on this forum I would like to add my own.
Will be posting the refurb on VJMC Kawasaki technical forum too.

Now that's out of the way here is a potted history of the bike.

Kawasaki Z500 B2 (Firecracker Red) bought new from Bob Fortune M/C Darlington for £1256.00

Out of the crate and rode home on trade plates by me.

First registered August 1st 1980 JAJ601W

Used For general transport and occasional blasts around Croft circuit till my Terry Beckett tuned RD400C took over.

On holiday Aug 1981 hit by White Escort in London. Damaged but rideable. Fixed on return.

Nov 1982-April 1983 Had now covered 44000 miles, winter strip. Frame paint, bolts Cadmium plated. New Wheel bearings, new rings and valve stem seals, new clutch plates. Second hand GPZ550H Unitrack STD pipes replaced the now well rotten STD pipes. New Rickman front crashbars. Looked brand new again.

July 1983 Hit by Honda Prelude, Major Damage. Wrote off, bought back. Forks and frame straightened, new yokes, new mudguard. New GPZ550H Unitrack STD exhausts. Second set of Rickman front crashbars. Worth their weight these things.

Things settled down a bit after this only new chain, sprocket etc and a Motad exhaust changed till now at 78260 miles. This bike has been with me man and boy, done everything asked of it and only let me down once when it kept blowing fuses thanks to me washing it far too often and putting it away with water in the switchgear.

I would have loved to show this bike at various events but even now my semi retired part time employment gets in the way at weekends. So I have started the refurb, not a restore as I will keep as much of the original bike as i can and still intend to ride it as much as possible. My plan is to get to 100,000 miles before the bike or I expire. Holidays will be booked in for next years events.

Enclosed to start this thread are the only shots I have when I got it home from the dealer before stripping it down to regrease shafts etc, I learned a lot with my SS50, CD175 and 400/4's about Japanese builds.

For comparison pics from when it turned 77777 miles in OCT 2015.

Will get some before and after shots and text as the jobs get done. Hope you all enjoy this journey as much as I will.This thread may become a bit picture heavy so will post smallish pics.

As new
z500 new b-w3.jpg
9 miles only
z500 new b-w.jpg
as it passed this milestone (77,777miles)
Kawasaki Z500 at 77777 miles.jpg
full bike
Kawasaki Z500 at 77777 miles 2.jpg
Have got the switch gear off so starting small and working my way through
LH
LH Switch before.JPG
RH
100_2830.JPG
So here goes, this may be a long job and pic heavy.

Regards

Rob B
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Re: Kawasaki Z500 B2 1980 refurb after 78260 miles

#2 Post by fastbob » Sat Oct 20, 2018 1:56 pm

I know that digital cameras can be quite kind to bikes but that looks stunning just as it is . Coincidentaly my ER5 is approaching 77000 miles and the only issue is a very slack primary chain . So as soon as I've had a cup of tea I'm going to begin my engine swap by dropping out the old engine today . See my thread in this section . Good luck with the refurb.

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Re: Kawasaki Z500 B2 1980 refurb after 78260 miles

#3 Post by fastbob » Sat Oct 20, 2018 2:07 pm

I see you have those Kawasaki forks with the slugs and circlips . I know a trick with those , let me know if you get stuck .

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Re: Kawasaki Z500 B2 1980 refurb after 78260 miles

#4 Post by Muttly » Sat Oct 20, 2018 2:14 pm

That, to me, looks a lovely bike. Really really nice.

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Re: Kawasaki Z500 B2 1980 refurb after 78260 miles

#5 Post by linuxrob » Sat Oct 20, 2018 2:21 pm

fastbob wrote:
Sat Oct 20, 2018 1:56 pm
I know that digital cameras can be quite kind to bikes but that looks stunning just as it is . Coincidentaly my ER5 is approaching 77000 miles and the only issue is a very slack primary chain . So as soon as I've had a cup of tea I'm going to begin my engine swap by dropping out the old engine today . See my thread in this section . Good luck with the refurb.
Cheers will have a look later this afternoon after finished the "domestic" bit.

rob

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Re: Kawasaki Z500 B2 1980 refurb after 78260 miles

#6 Post by linuxrob » Sat Oct 20, 2018 2:32 pm

fastbob wrote:
Sat Oct 20, 2018 2:07 pm
I see you have those Kawasaki forks with the slugs and circlips . I know a trick with those , let me know if you get stuck .
Would like to know your method, i have had these fork tops off quite a few times now, mainly to change the oil.

My method is to soak in wd40 overnight then screw a 12mm fine pitch bolt into the slug, slip a flat bladed screwdriver in and pop the circip out. Mole grips on the 12mm bolt if needed to wiggle the slug out, do this when forks still in yoke and same when assembly. Red rubber grease on the seal and pack before putting the plastic cap back on keeps the worst of the weather out. My fork seals are the originals also the springs, still in spec. When it was new a 20mm spacer was used to preload the front a bit more and 5W oil was perfect for the damping. On the road had fork gaiters most of the time.

Have done a few where you have to take fork leg out and use the fork spring to punch the slug out. Cloth over hole obviously.

Rob

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Re: Kawasaki Z500 B2 1980 refurb after 78260 miles

#7 Post by linuxrob » Sat Oct 20, 2018 2:35 pm

Muttly wrote:
Sat Oct 20, 2018 2:14 pm
That, to me, looks a lovely bike. Really really nice.
Thanks Muttly will show details of the wear and tear, starting to show it's age now.

rob b

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Re: Kawasaki Z500 B2 1980 refurb after 78260 miles

#8 Post by fastbob » Sat Oct 20, 2018 3:35 pm

linuxrob wrote:
Sat Oct 20, 2018 2:32 pm
fastbob wrote:
Sat Oct 20, 2018 2:07 pm
I see you have those Kawasaki forks with the slugs and circlips . I know a trick with those , let me know if you get stuck .
Would like to know your method, i have had these fork tops off quite a few times now, mainly to change the oil.

My method is to soak in wd40 overnight then screw a 12mm fine pitch bolt into the slug, slip a flat bladed screwdriver in and pop the circip out. Mole grips on the 12mm bolt if needed to wiggle the slug out, do this when forks still in yoke and same when assembly. Red rubber grease on the seal and pack before putting the plastic cap back on keeps the worst of the weather out. My fork seals are the originals also the springs, still in spec. When it was new a 20mm spacer was used to preload the front a bit more and 5W oil was perfect for the damping. On the road had fork gaiters most of the time.

Have done a few where you have to take fork leg out and use the fork spring to punch the slug out. Cloth over hole obviously.

Rob
Ok , I don't have any threaded holes in mine . Anyway , all I do is keep the handle bars on to use as a fulcrum and get the biggest Allen key in my toolbox with the short end on the slug . Pull up on the long end to push against the spring and pop the circlip out with your free hand . Then the plugs should slide out easily. Sounds like yours at a bit reluctant.

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Re: Kawasaki Z500 B2 1980 refurb after 78260 miles

#9 Post by linuxrob » Sat Oct 20, 2018 10:38 pm

Some do, some just have a countersink in the top so your screwdriver/Allen key can slip out of it at the most inopportune moment. my B1 has these little blighters the B2 does not.

Took the LH and RH switchgear to bits and did a clean up, sorted the scratch as best as I could on the RH switch then did a couple of light coats of Techcote Satin Black on them. Will ask SO in the morning if she could use her extensive art skills to repaint the stamped in lettering on the switches before a couple of coats of satin lacquer.

Am pleasantly surprised at the state of the switch internals, all work well and positive so just a de-grease and silicon grease injection on assembly.

LH lower internals, horn, pass.
LH Switch before bottom.JPG
LH Switch before top.JPG
LH Switch wiring before.JPG
RH Lights, start, Engine Run-stop
RH upper .jPG
RH lower.jPG
RH upper and lower.jPG
Rob B
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Switchgear done Kawasaki Z500 B2 1980 refurb after 78260 miles

#10 Post by linuxrob » Fri Oct 26, 2018 3:58 pm

Had a good week so far, LH wiring in very good order and looks good as new after a clean and de-grease.
1-LH Switch wiring cleaned.JPG
Covers painted Techcote Satin Black, lettering done by my partner Julie then a few coats of Satin Lacquer. Found a great match in the art paint she uses were Gamboge for the yellow and Titanium for the white.
4-LH Switch cleaned painted ready to assemble.JPG
lower switch goes together easy but the top half has to be assembled in the right order -
Dimmer contact strip first with screw no 1, then wire clamp with screw no 2, finally the moving contact spring loaded popped in (3 ).
5-LH Switch wiring the hl dimmer order.jPG
all tested and back together
6-LH Switch complete.JPG
RH switchgear took a bit more cleaning thanks to the regular greasing the throttle grip got and oil down the cables. Also there is a battle scar near the lights on/off switch which i have mostly polished out, so

upper and lower painted Techcote satin black
02 RH upper paint satin black.JPG
01 RH lower paint only.JPG
Julie did the lettering again
03 RH upper paint satin black - with lettering.JPG
Finally a couple of coats of satin lacquer and ready to assemble. This side goes together really easy
04 RH upper paint satin black - with lettering - satin lacquer.JPG
Finished RH switch
05 RH finished.JPG
To finish for today a before and after
before and after.jpg
More after the weekend

Rob B
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Re: Kawasaki Z500 B2 1980 refurb after 78260 miles

#11 Post by Tiggie » Fri Oct 26, 2018 4:18 pm

Great work! :cheers:
I'm an idiot who puts up Christmas lights in November

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Re: Kawasaki Z500 B2 1980 refurb after 78260 miles

#12 Post by megawatt » Fri Oct 26, 2018 5:12 pm

Top job.
Bike work, I come to you and you can learn to do it yourself click the link below for more info
http://themotorbikeforum.co.uk/viewtopi ... 5&p=949652

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Re: Kawasaki Z500 B2 1980 refurb after 78260 miles

#13 Post by Muttly » Fri Oct 26, 2018 5:27 pm

Something lovely about seeing things restored.

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Re: Kawasaki Z500 B2 1980 refurb after 78260 miles

#14 Post by fastbob » Fri Oct 26, 2018 8:35 pm

Crikey ! If this the standard you are working to then this bike is going to be an absolute stunner when its finished . 👍🏻👍🏻

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Re: Kawasaki Z500 B2 1980 refurb after 78260 miles

#15 Post by linuxrob » Fri Oct 26, 2018 10:08 pm

Cheers chaps for your kind words and encouragement.

I have lurked here and other forums glued to many a restoration and build thread. The quality of work i have seen from you people is truly amazing and inspirational.
This is the first time i have been able to take my time with a full strip and rebuild. Previously I have had work, family and sometimes profit to hurry me up. Done lots of work on my own bikes in the past from the humble SS50 /C100 / C50's through 400/4's, RD's a mighty Z1R (small tank) and even my RE5. Painted stuff like these with aerosol cans, frames, brackets and sometimes bodywork sent stuff of for plating (Cadmium when you could) still do not have compressor or machine tools. Having now more time and a Bandit for sunny days, a GS125 for pottering around in all weathers, I can give my owned from new and well loved Z500 the attention it needs to go from a good condition survivor to a showable ridden classic of it's time. It feel good to have this bike to refurb knowing it's full history as finding a project as complete as this would be hard and cost more than I have to fund it. The Bandit had a good 53000 mile half strip nearly 2 years ago and will hope to post that story here when i get time, and yes i did take a load of before and after shots.

As i have said before this is good tidy up and not a restore so will see what can be done using everything from the original bike that's serviceable.

Finally here is a pic from July 1981 all shined before my annual hols (where it was hit by a white escort in London, it had done just shy of 15000 miles then.
JAJ 601 W Summer 1981-black wheels-small.jpg
Rob B
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