KZ750 Twin

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KZ750 Twin

Post  ProTouring442 on Tue 2 Aug - 17:58

Well, I had written out a summary of my work thus far, including pics, but it seems the pics cannot be posted for 7 days, so as they say, "watch this spot for details."

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Re: KZ750 Twin

Post  TinTin on Tue 2 Aug - 18:46

Bill, you can post pics anytime, we're curious enough.... drunken
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Re: KZ750 Twin

Post  ProTouring442 on Tue 2 Aug - 20:19

Lemme try again... Ah-ha! I got it! Very Happy

I recently discovered that I did not have quite enough going on so as to push me over the edge into complete insanity. Thus, I decided I should purchase yet another project or hobby to go along with working on the house, writing two books, helping my wife with the day-to-day house stuff, building my 442, expanding my vinyl collection, etc, etc, etc...

And so I purchased a 1976 Kawasaki KZ750B (known, I believe, as a Z750 in Europe). Like all good project bikes, cars, homes, etc, it is a little more ratty than I might have wanted, it is, as they so often say, "a good start." I drug this poor unsuspecting bike home in the back of a rental van whose air conditioning quit working some 3 rain filled hours from my home. This made for quite the audacious start to my project as I did my best to keep the windshield from fogging up, keep my self cool, and keep dry despite the necessity of keeping the windows open.

Once home a neighbor of mine, after my having discovered that I would likely die in a solo attempt, helped my drag the poor thing out of the van, and even stuck around a bit to help me mop up the water that had collected in the cargo area. I wheeled the bike into my already-too-full garage and called it a night.

I next set about making a plan for this unsuspecting little addition to my family. I have always had an affection for two particular motorcycles, their looks and other attributes making them for me what the "best motorcycle in the world" would look like. These two are the Les Williams Triumph T-160 "Legend" and the Norton Commando Interstate. Thus I have decided I should incorporate aspects of each into my "plan."

Here is the bike as it arrived home:



Don't you just love that seat? I believe it came from really-butt-ugly-seats.whatever if you would like to find one for your own ride.

Now, in case anyone is unfamiliar with the two bikes I have mentioned, here they are.



Above is a Norton Commando Interstate (Copyright unknown). That big tank, the cylinders jutting forward at the perfect angle, and those wonderful Pea-Shooters! Oh so nice!



This is a Les Williams' Triumph T-160 "Legend" (Copyright Keith Gaunt). That seat cowl has to be one of the best ever designed!

To get started, of course, I spent the better part of a few hours degreasing, degriming, and otherwise attempting to make the bike so I could work on it without looking like I had just come off a two week stint cleaning out the insides of a few dozen oil tankers. I then removed the original tank, seat, seat cowl, and anything else that might be in my way.



I then started working on a tank. I have two ideas that I think will work. The first involves a BMW R90 tank I had "lying around" (read "I one day picked up at a yard sale or off Ebay for some unknown reason), cut the bottom out of it, and placed it over top the bottom of the original tank.



This option will obviously require much welding, burning of fingers, sanding, cutting of hands, cursing, paint stripping, painting, spilling of paint, etc. The second idea I have is to use the tank off of a GPZ1100. That tank has a great shape, but it will be practically a bolt-on and I am not certain I can do anything that intelligent, much less that easy.

As you can see, I also started shaping the seat. I really, really hated tearing up that oh-so-wonderful seat-thing that came on the bike, but in the end I just had to. Really. I then used blue insulation foam to create a seat cowl, and parts of some old seats I had lying around (this time from other projects, etc) to create the seat base and bum-stop.



I think the overall shape is going to work out wonderfully.



I plan on stripping the chrome off of the fender, and painting it body color.



The two pieces of the frame you see will be covered when i cover the foam in fiberglass. After I remove the foam, I hope to use the hump as a storage space.

I purchased a Zephyr 750 front end that I plan to use, along with a set of Les Williams adjustable bars. I am using KZ750LTD side panels, and hope to use MAC head pipes with Norton Pea-Shooters for the exhaust and a set of RAASK rearsets.

So there it is, as it stands now. Today, after some other chores, I hope to get out and finish disassembling the thing so i can take the frame up to get it sand blasted. I might have it powder coated as well, but I'll have to see if that is in the budget, especially after I just purchased a very nice electronic ignition setup for it.

Shiny Side Up!
Bill

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Re: KZ750 Twin

Post  caferacer 1975 on Tue 2 Aug - 20:24

looking very nice....tnx 4 posting....!

jocolor
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Re: KZ750 Twin

Post  ProTouring442 on Wed 3 Aug - 4:29

Well, no more pictures today, but I can report that the frame is now ready for a thorough cleaning and painting. The engine will get its time in the suds as well. I hope to get some of the cleaning done tomorrow morning, and if so, I will post a few post-cleansing pics.

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Re: KZ750 Twin

Post  Toecutter on Wed 3 Aug - 9:46

Promising project man, cant wait for the result. Prety unique build!

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A bit more is done...

Post  ProTouring442 on Wed 17 Aug - 1:19

Well, so I managed to get her all to bits, then spiff some things up again. I cleaned, cleaned, and cleaned the frame and engine in preparation for paint. Then I primed and painted the frame with Eastwood's Chassis Black primer and paint. I don't know how well it will hold up, but I like the way it sprays. Came out very nicely.

The engine was painted with wheel paint as it should hold up to the heat. The side cases will, of course, be polished.



Then I got a wild idea and decided I might like a different tank. Thus, we now have a nice GPZ1100 tank. I like the look with the shape of the tail section.



The tank will get a Monza cap of course, right where the stock GPZ filler was.



That's about all for now. Another sweep of the garage is needed after today's work, then I think I will start glassing the seat cowl. I need to bring the fenders up to the chrome plater's and have them stripped, and I have to order the Monza cap. Once I have the cap, I can bring the tank to the welder's and have it TIGed up. I suppose a couple petcock bungs would be a good idea too, eh?

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Slow, but there is progress

Post  ProTouring442 on Thu 25 Aug - 15:03

Over the last week or so, I have made some progress. I pressed in the new stem bearings to adapt the Zephyr front end. On the lower of the two nuts I knocked off the Zephyr seal holder and turned the piece that held it down in the lathe so I could use the KZ750 upper dust shield. I then turned my feeble attention span to the gauges. I cut the barrels that held the gauge mount off the original upper triple clamp and turned them down in the lathe to make them smooth. I then drilled a hole through each, larger on the outside and smaller on the inside to accommodate a counter sunk bolt that threads into holes I drilled and tapped in the Zephyr forks where the Zephyr ignition switch bolted up. This was a rather long process, but it works!







Later, I chucked the original handlebar mounts in the lathe and cut the mount from the shaft allowing me to use them on the Zephyr triple clamp.

I also worked the rear cowl a bit more, and decided on a tail light.



Well, that's all for this edition of Bill is a Raving Lunatic. Tune in next time when we can here Bill say "Wow, I wonder where this goes?"

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Re: KZ750 Twin

Post  Toecutter on Fri 26 Aug - 19:51

Great progress Bill.

I think you should go for the gpz tank, the 'robust' bwm one can't compete with the Jap and will look better on another bike.
Frame is very nicely done and the engine looks great, of course polish !!

Do you have a polishing stand or do you need to give the job away ? Reason i ask is cause im doing all my polish work myself with minimal attributes...water, sandpaper and a little dremel 300...it comes out ok but it's not high quality polish.

greetz

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Re: KZ750 Twin

Post  ProTouring442 on Sat 27 Aug - 2:15

Toecutter wrote:Great progress Bill.

I think you should go for the gpz tank, the 'robust' bwm one can't compete with the Jap and will look better on another bike.

The GPz tank is definitely a keeper, especially after I butchered it to make it sit right on the Kz frame! affraid

Frame is very nicely done and the engine looks great, of course polish !!

Do you have a polishing stand or do you need to give the job away ? Reason i ask is cause im doing all my polish work myself with minimal attributes...water, sandpaper and a little dremel 300...it comes out ok but it's not high quality polish.

greetz

I don't have a stand, but I do have a nice, large bench grinder and a set of wheels and compounds from The Eastwood Company. If all goes well, I will do all the polishing, if not...

Thanks for the feedback!

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Bill


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A little progress...

Post  ProTouring442 on Wed 7 Sep - 2:23

So I have managed to get a little bit done despite a rash of weather induced migraines.


First up we have the fruits of the first bit of polishing labor.


On the fabrication front, I solved my steering stop dilemma.


I machined the original handlebar mounts so I could use them with the new forks/upper triple clamp.


I made upper fork shrouds to compliment the headlight ears I had "on the shelf."


Another shot of the upper shrouds and headlight ears. The headlight shell is an old British unit that will get a yellow French Market 7" headlight.

That's all for this installment of Bill is a Raving Lunatic, tune in next week when Bill just might find that bolt he dropped!

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Finally, a little more work!

Post  ProTouring442 on Fri 4 May - 1:33

Worked on adapting an 18" front wheel off a KZ1000.







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Re: KZ750 Twin

Post  ProTouring442 on Tue 11 Sep - 17:13

Back to work! Very Happy

Rearsets....

While digging around I found a set of steel brackets that looked like they might work.




It wasn't a perfect fit, but opening the holes up a bit did the trick. I have some nice beveled aluminum washers coming that should give them a very nice look.



Made up a foot peg holder/shifter pivot.



Made a thrust washer so the shifter doesn't ride against the bracket. I think I remake it from brass though.



Cut the tab off so I can weld it back on the other side.



Looks like it should work well.



Modified the stock shifter arm to make the stub.



Looks good.



Purchased a couple nice Heim Joints to make up the linkage.



That's all for now. I'll take a pic when I get the linkage made. I'll also detail how I make up the right side.

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Re: KZ750 Twin

Post  joolzned on Thu 13 Sep - 10:39

That is starting to look really good, I cant wait to see it finished :)

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Re: KZ750 Twin

Post  ProTouring442 on Thu 13 Sep - 16:29

joolzned wrote:That is starting to look really good, I cant wait to see it finished :)

Funny... I can't wait to see it finished either!

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Re: KZ750 Twin

Post  suzukiac50 on Sat 15 Sep - 23:01

You've got some nice examples!
i hope you get what you were aiming for!
can't wait to see!

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