I bought a KZ1300A from 1982. Many external parts missing. For the record, no seat, handlebar, headlight, no stop light, actually the whole rear missing, no blinkers, no right cover, toolbox and battery compartment missing, no mirrors, and some external covers like the one by the carburetor absent. The chromed engine covers all peeling off, that's cosmetic. All the controls were hanging and rusty. Oh well I thought, having such a classic 6 cylinder bike was a dream. The odometer was showing a bit over 8000 km only and I was told by the seller that the bike was running when put up on a top shelf in a warehouse fifteen or so years ago. So I said, alright. I will go for it.
That was three months ago. In the process, I found out that the seller was lying. The engine need way more than a total top rebuild. The bike was left, I am sure, in some very wet conditions with spark plugs hardly screwed in. Water got into all cylinders and all became very rusty. All the pistons were stone cold stuck.
So, here is my diary with many first entries, which I will be posting as retrospection, coming in slowly until I catch up to where I am in this resurrection. I can't call it otherwise because basically this bike was pretty much a dead one for good.
I will need a lot of advise and leads along the way. Please feel free to drop me a line whenever you see something or have something to suggest.
I will try to collect original missing parts, but most seem to be crazy expensive and what was supposed to go mainly on cosmetics, will not even cover the costs of putting the engine in order. Therefore most likely I will be opting for aftermarket and alternative solutions. I need any suggestions as to any parts of other bikes which can be used on the KZ. Headlight, fender, seat (!), etc. If you have any spares which you think I could use, or have leads to parts, please don't hesitate to contact me!
So, here we go. A couple of photos of the bike when I first saw it.
I feel your pain. I hope you don't have any guns. Hate to think might happen to the lying Bast _ _ d if you ran into him again. That's a disgrace. I hope he didn't sting you on the price. Guaranteed you're looking at a rebore and a set of pistons + rings.
It's going to take a fair bit of patience to break the pistons free. Soak the barrels and top of the pistons with penetrating fluid and let it sit for 4 days to a week before attempting anything. I would then start tapping on the top of the piston at the front and the back to try to get the pistons rocking on the bores. Something like a 1/2" dowel and light tapping with a small hammer. Once you get some movement you can try rotating the crank back and forth BUT DON'T USE A LOT OF FORCE. I've seen a lot of damage on con rods when a 3 ft bar was used to break pistons free on a V8.
The photos were taken almost 3 months ago.. I have some updates.
I did exactly what you suggest. It was way worse than that though... All was like welded. Absolutely no play after soaking in different kinds of penetrants.
I researched the subject and came to conclusion that there are two items I felt I could use safely: Kroil and Metal Rescue.
I was really afraid something will bend or break if I try to turn the shaft. I gave up on it despite cleaning up the visible areas.I thought it might not be safe to try to push the pistons up against possible rust build up. I opened the oil pan and saw no coolant in it. Looking down the engine, there was no rust. With hope no coolant went pass the rings, I figure out that perhaps the safest possible success would be just to keep the pistons not moved where the are, and try to slide off the cylinder block upwards.
I disconnected all the bolts and anything holding the cylinder block down. I used pullies to apply upward pressure on the block. Quite a bit of force. Nothing moved of course. Then I filled the cylinders with Metal Rescue. Once it evaporated, I cleaned the cylinders up and refilled with Metal Rescue. I applied Kroil iat first, but later got rid of it as much as possible thinking anything oily would not let the Metal Rescue penetrate. After almost two months and three changes of the Metal Rescue, I came to check on the bike. Wow!!! The cylinder block was quarter of an inch off the engine block on one side! I cleaned any Metal Rescue residue and applied Kroil. Planned to keep it till next day but after applying just a bit of more pressure on the pullies, it lifted right off with no efford, on both sides! Then working it evenly, it slid right off the pistons. I couldn't believe to see the pistons and having the block on the ground!!!
There seems to be a bit of very superficial rust on the surface of the connecting rods, but it came off with a simple wipe. No play detectable and I think all is good.
In the meantime, I purchased an old cylinder block with pistons on eBay. Not surprisingly, all but one sleeve in the original block that came off my bike were completely shot. Only one was OK, and in the purchased block one was bad. I put the block in the oven and then tapped the good sleeve out.
Purchased two bottom o-rings from Kawasaki (oem), and one (top) from alternative shop (not oem).
Right now the cylinder block with pistons and that spare salvaged from the original block are at the machine shop. The one sleeve will get replaced, all will be deglazed, and I hope that's it.
Ordered oem water pump oil seal from Kawasaki, and cleaned the mechanical seal assembly. I think it will hold up.
Next is the cylinder head. Already cleaned it superficially. It will most likely a slight resurfacing as there are bits missing here and there.
Did crude valve seal tests - sprayed Kroil, which is really super penetrating, on the valves (spring are there so all are closed). One exhaust and one intake let Kroil go through. I will know what's happening once the valves are out. Valve stem seals are arriving.
By the way...
Rings on the pistons, which came with the alternative block look great. I know, best is to get new sets. I am not cheap and want to get it done properly to my best current finacial ability, but in the back of my head is keeping the rings.