KZ1100- another orphaned UJM resurrected

Discussion in 'Old's Cool' started by Quickv4, Jan 15, 2013.

  1. Quickv4

    Quickv4 Pro Turd Polisher

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    It all started one morning this fall. I decided to take a walk to the grocery store instead of driving. As I did when I do take a good walk, I went down all the back alley ways, behind houses, and beside a few apartments. It was only about 2 blocks away when I glanced a gleam of chrome underneath a pile of leaves behind a apartment complex grage unit. I go over to the gleam and push all the leaves away. Lo and behold there is a KZ1100 hidden underneath!
    As I brush more of the dead foliage off, I notice how complete it is. Sidecovers excellent, tank, one small dent. Controls-all there, levers-intact. Hmmn. I peer at the tag, last registered almost 3 years ago. The front tire was flat and sunk in the mud. I bet this thing is abandoned!
    So I ask a few tenants that were out in the apartment complex who that bike belongs to, no one had any clue. I then go up to the apartment that the bike was parked behind, knocked, left a note of inquiry. Thats all I could do for now.

    I waited about a week to two weeks, with no response. I knocked on that door again, and asked a few more tenants. No one knew whos it was.

    So i considered it abandoned.

    So one crisp fall day I took a bicycle pump to the bike and pumped up the flat Cheng Shins. With alot of rocking and pulling, I got it out of the earthly hole it was settling into. The brakes were free, and the front brakes actually still had pressure! So I carefully lugged this heavy big-bore bike out into the parking lot and onto the sidewalk. My place being 2 blocks down and downhill, I hopped onto the saddle and rolled right down into my parking lot. The brakes did in fact work, and I rolled swiftly into my parking spot. In the broad daylight I was able to take inventory on what a find I had here!
    #1
  2. Quickv4

    Quickv4 Pro Turd Polisher

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    #2
  3. brucifer

    brucifer Long timer

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    Nice! Looking forward to hearing "the rest of the story". :lurk
    #3
  4. McJamie

    McJamie STROMINATOR

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    There are not many shaft drive KZ1100' out there.Everyone is familiar with the big Suzuki ones, or the the Kawasaki LTD models. Totally worth bringing back to life.
    #4
  5. zap2504

    zap2504 Dave E.

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    Not many of the "standard" KZs around; way more of the LTD/cruisers. Interested to see how you clear the title (real big issue here).
    #5
  6. Cogswell

    Cogswell Spudly Adventurer

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    I would try to get the VIN checked out first thing to see if bike is stolen, or maybe get last owners info for possible purchase. :deal I probably would have done that prior to moving it.


    Other than that it can be fixed up to make you a decent bike if you can get the paperwork legal on it, nice find !

    Mike
    #6
  7. Quickv4

    Quickv4 Pro Turd Polisher

    Joined:
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    As I looked even closer, I seemed to gather that this bike had been actually ridden not to far into the past. The Cheng Shin Himaxes were molded in 2007 and 2008, and were worn down to the point of needed replacement. Good sign! Odometer read only 21000 miles, low for the year. The bike kept on looking better and better. From the stripped JIS screws on the carbs, I knew someone had been into the carbs once upon a time, and had removed the pilot jet screw plugs.

    One of the first things I did was To take the VIN and the plate that was on the bike to the DMV to get it checked out. I have rescued abandoned bikes before, and know how much a hassle it is to get in contact with the last owner.
    I went up to the lady at the DMV. I gave her the plate and VIN. She punches In the numbers and after a moment she looks back at me with a smirkand says, "well, the bike is not stolen, but unfortunately i cannot give you the contact for the last registered owner due to privacy issues, but I can tell you he is more than likely not around anymore" " here is a form you can mail out to the DMV to obtain the contact info" I take the sheet home, fill it out, and slip my $3 check in for the friendly state guv folks.


    Since this bike was abandoned, I did not have a key.
    So the next day I took the ignition off and ran down to the local locksmith. The lady at the front desk looked at, found the code on the switch. She said she would call me when they have to keys done.
    No later than 3 hrs, she calls me back. The keys are done and work perfectly. $13 for the two new masters. I pick up the switch and twiddled with the brand new master keys. The switch makes a satisfying click click click in between detents. It was as though I procured to key to a valuble treasure box!

    So I reinstalled the keyswitch and did up the connections.
    Time to unlock the "treasure box"! So I took my new keys and unlocked every switch on the bike. Helmet lock,centerstand lock!!!!( now thats cool!), and finally the seat.

    So I place the key in and turn it till it clicks, and the seat pops up slightly. I pull out the key and lift up on the seat. With a hesitant creak the seat hinges up.
    Among the leaves and debris I see the original TOOL KIT! Wow, that dosnt happen all too often!
    But thats not all, underneath the toolkit I spot a flash of paper in a weathered baggie. I pull out the baggy, crack the seal and...


    The REGISTRATION and INSURANCE for the last owner, complete with name and address!


    WOW, what a find!

    The fellows name was Michael, and the address was about a half mile away. I drive over to the address and speak with a gentleman named Chad. Michael was his former roomate, and had moved 200 miles away. Chad was very friendly and happily gave my mikes phone number.
    I call up Michael, who also was very pleasant at his first greeting. I asked him if he did in fact still own the bike, to which he said no. He had 'sold it to a young fella by the name of Willy' and that Willy 'should still be in town' Michael gave me Willys number, and wished me luck in the search.
    I called Willy and left him a voice mail, fingers crossed.
    Needless to say I went to bed very satisfied that day! It normally dosnt go that slick!
    #7
  8. Quickv4

    Quickv4 Pro Turd Polisher

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    The next day I get a call back while at work. It was Willy. I told him the circumstances of my find and he was intrigued, into which I asked him if he wanted to sell it. He said the good ol line, "well, what do you think its worth" oh great. I could wither lowball him or sky high his expectations. The ball was still in my court, so I said, "well, how ' bout 50-100 bucks? Nah, "not that low", says Willy "how bout 300" I counter with 250, and you get me the title!!!!!!!!!! Cool man, sounds like a deal!!! He replies back.

    I then retort, " hey dude, I have cash waiting....... Get the title and ill be right over with the cash!!!!! Sounds good, ill call you back when I find the title" says Willy.

    So the next day I hook up my jumper cables from my truck to the battery leads on the bike. I twiddle the key on and the headlight/taillight spring to life. Hi beam works, lo beam. ALL turnsignals twinkle, although the the switch was quite gummy and hard to cancel. Horn works, everything seemed to function well. Dash and intrument bulbs light right up. Heck yah!!!!

    $100 later I go to wally world and pick up a fresh AGM battery. After a night of thorough, slow trickle charging I slap it in the bike. Turn the key, pull in the clutch, and hit the starter button. Turrututututututututututut...... Bike cranks over, but of course does not fire.

    So I figure what the heck and drain all the varnished gas from the carbs. Yuck, I absolutely loathe that smell!! :puke1
    I took the fuel line off and funneled some clean, freah fuel directly into the bowls. I drain once more and then top off the float bowls once more

    I pull the choke out all the way, pull in the clutch, and hit the starter button. TUrutttututuutuutuut....cruk........cruck....brbbr....rututuutututu....bbbbb...bb. Bbtut......bubuhbuhbuhbrRRRRAPPPPPTTTT

    In a cloud of steam, oil and gas vapors its ALIVE!!!!! The 4-2 exhaust has smoke coming out of every gap. I twiddle with the choke to lower the RPM, and of course it dies when I set the choke off. Just like I thought, plugged pilot jets..... Typical for CV carbs. Still awesome to hear that inline four liter bike run! Oh the smells and the noise!
    #8
  9. welder

    welder Long timer

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    How's the stolen bike comming along?
    #9
  10. Quickv4

    Quickv4 Pro Turd Polisher

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    I took off the carbs during the next week and carefully disassembled them and thoroughly cleaned them, they were really not that bad, like I said, I think someone had been in them at one time. I took great care to remove all the jets, jet holders, emulsion tubes, etc. and thoroughy spray and de gunk them. Set the float heights and did a bench sync. I threw the carbs back together and tested the CV slides with a shop vac. All the slides lifted with the applied suction, good to go

    The Carb/intake boots were very supple and crack free, and it was a piece of cake to pop the carbs back on! That disnt happen to often.

    Now the cursed carb/airbox boots were a different story. They had a shrunken granite-like consistency, and trying to pry them back into position proved futile.

    Now what to do?? Im so close!! but this bikes needs those boot to run!!!

    My memory is jogged, a kernal of bike wisdom and cheapskatery is recollected. Wintergreen/Xylene experiments by other forum members come to my head. Thats it!!! lets try 'er boys.

    So on amazon I go, and order a pint of wintergreen.

    It shows up a few days later, and I hurredly pour all of into a pickle jar, topping the remainder off with some xylene.

    I drop one of my hard boots into the jar and stuff my "test tube" into my bedroom closet. The next night after work, I pull my preserved specimen out of the lab storage and this is what I found...

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    AAAAAAGH it has elephantitis!!!
    I am reassured by the internets that they will shrink down to the proper size, but dang, I didnt know they'd get that BIG!!!!!!

    Video on how rubbery the boots get...

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    #10
  11. Quickv4

    Quickv4 Pro Turd Polisher

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    After about a week of swapping each of the four boots into the mixture, I easily slid them into position behind the carbs and I cranked the bike right over. Boom she fires and settles into a nice idle. I let the bike clear out and warm up.

    But then I ran into this issue, it would stall/flood out after fully warmed up....


    <iframe width="560" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/bCs6_G8VlUM?list=UUPw0f3So2qSUMlg3Rne_dfQ" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>



    So off came the carbs AGAIN, but it was much easier this time with all soft rubber parts. I cleaned all the needle seats, reset the float heights, replaced the idle jet plug Orings with new Viton ones.

    After this was all reinstalled, I started the bike and let it warm up. To my amazement, it did NOT flood out. It would rev cleanly and settle to a crisp idle!


    Well, what else to do but take it for its maiden voyage!


    So i verified I had working brakes, controls all tight and set. And I pushed it out of the parking spot and into the road. Pulled in the clutch and clunked the trans into first. let out the clutch and we were a MOVING! :D:clap I went down the block a bit and turned the corner, the bike still running great. No weird noises, scrapes, or clunks.

    With the bike now warm, I went down an empty street and CRANKED the throttle. all 100 horses were unbridled and the raw aircooled 1100 took OFF!!!! I had not felt a big bore UJM motor for awhile with the reigns out. Man, what a wonderful ride! I hit it into second, and jam the throttle again. The slides lift up and once again it launches. 2nd did not pop out, which I heard was a common issue! EXCELLENT!!!
    #11
  12. concours

    concours WFO for 41 years

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    lol, great job rescuing! Great to find a NON LTD version of the bike....
    #12
  13. McJamie

    McJamie STROMINATOR

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    A bad coil makes sense, likely just one, if it were both, it would probably run much worse. But I would replace both along with the plugs caps and wires as well.
    But from what I can hear in the video, there seems to be a small exhaust leak( check the exhaust studs), and the carbs are likely not quite synchronized.
    I would do what ever you can to keep that stock exhaust on the bike, it's pretty unlikely you would be able to find another. Engine parts from Gpz's & other KZ's are quite interchangeable. A good source for parts.
    #13
  14. Pigford

    Pigford British

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    Another common issue with the old A/C Kwaks is to make sure the coils are getting the full +12V ...... the power goes via the kill switch and corrosion gets in (and the connections) and can cause mayhem :huh
    #14
  15. Quickv4

    Quickv4 Pro Turd Polisher

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    After getting the bike in running condition, afew weeks later I get a call.

    It was Willy. So I go over to his house and this is what he hands me...



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    A CLEAN TITLE!!!!!



    So I hand him the $250 I promised, and we signed our names, and with a handshake and a mutual smile I left.
    #15
  16. Quickv4

    Quickv4 Pro Turd Polisher

    Joined:
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    Dickinson, Nort' Dakohtah- Orig. from Wiscowsin
    The following weeks brought us the cold North Dakota winter, and one warm night I brought the bike into my workplaces heated shop for wintertime tinkering to get her all fettled up for the spring.



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    Well what to attack first? Well, it did have brakes, but I figured rebuilding the brake system is always something good to do.


    Before picture of master cylinder.
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    Lets open this thing and visit the Nastymonster

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    Ewwwww
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    Ok, now lets take the whole entire front brake system apart and strip it of the old paint....

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    Now lets stuff some silicone plugs in dem holes and throw them on my powdercoating stand, AKA a worklight stand.

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    Ok, the High Gloss Black powder has been applied, throw 'er in the oven...

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    Set the oven at 400F and set the ol timer for 15 minutes, lets bake dem cookies!

    TADA.......!!!!:clap

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    After they cooled off, I threw the master and calipers back together...


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    #16
  17. Quickv4

    Quickv4 Pro Turd Polisher

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    After getting that all done, it was time to buff the aluminum on the engine.


    Clutch cover after a quick 3 stage buff...


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    Generator/starter sprag cover before...

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    After...

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    #17
  18. Cogswell

    Cogswell Spudly Adventurer

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    Good to see you found the owner and got a clear title. You must have been living right for a while as that usually does not happen.:clap


    I'll enjoy watching your progress on the bike.:deal


    Mike
    #18
  19. nanno

    nanno Been here awhile

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    As I run (most of) a KZ1100 in KZ1000J, I shall be watching this thread closely... yours is looking a lot neater than mine already.

    Cheers,
    Greg
    #19