Before I continue with update, another quick remark about the frame. Without a doubt, I'd love to strip the bike down to naked frame, paint it or powder coat. It would be an improvement - it's not perfect! But the engine is not going to be taken apart - this was confirmed today. It's basically not possible for me to remove the engine from the frame in one piece, and the bike is not going to my living room in boxes again!
After all done, the bike will be complete and looking good. Stripping it will be easy in the future - it can be done in a day. When the time comes, I will do that and have the whole frame done. Putting it all back together will be just another day.
Now, let's go to what happened. I flushed the whole cooling system with water. Drained, then rinsed the whole radiator and engine with pressurised water until nothing but crystal clear water was coming out. The overflow reservoir was filty - that was cleaned as well.
After quick cleaning. Looking good, but I will be using another one I have ready. I just want to show that a filthy dark reserve tank can be made into a nice looking.
What next - radiator comes off.
Temperature sensor - not stock, I am not sure yet what exactly it is. I think it came with the aftermarket temperature gauge. And more generously applied silicone!
Lots of rusty colors - they came from tops of the exhaust pipes rusting a bit, and the wind and water blowing this red dust all over.
The fan doesn't look bad, and it was working correctly. The rubber dumpers had metal inserts mounted incorrectly (from the wrong side), but that will be changed.
The radiator is off. The core looks perfect, and it wasn't leaking. Just needs more flushing to make the inside nice and shiny.
The water pump housing looks good and potentially has never been removed. The one clamp was replaced when removing the radiator to install the aftermarket 6-1 exhaust.
The top looks kind of like there might have been a leak - but not necessarily. I will probably remove the housing and seal everything again. It's a quick job - if all goes smooth and the bolts and the housing are not stuck! It will be a good chance to inspect the thermostat and the water pump seals. I haven't seen any oil in the coolant, and any coolant in the oil, so I suspect all is just fine inside.
The exhaust pipes will be cleaned and painted with high temperature paint. Definitely silver.
Next oil drain. No traces of coolant/water - means all is nice and tight! I was told the oil was changed. But when?! It's dark, doesn't look fresh. And now it's out.
Black sludge after the bike had been standing for a couple weeks. Nothing to worry. I'll do some cleaning later, including the bottom of the crank case. The oil pan might come off as well. Even just clean and fresh oil changes will take care of it! Besides this, and most importantly, absolutely no solid particles of any sorts. None! In the oil filter as well. It says a lot about the engine! I'm very pleased so far.
The deep sump will take at least 6.2 liters on next fill. 0r whatever it is when changing the oil filter. I'll be using Rotella T4 10-W40 - the exact one so many swear by and which has been taking care of my bikes for years now.
The left cover is off. Superficially all looks good. I am going to replace the starter with a spare starter I have already serviced - ready to bolt and go! I will service the removed starter and it will go on a shelf as a backup for my two KZ1300 now.
I want to make sure all the subcomponents are in best shape. I've heard some noise a couple times when cranking the engine, and they were coming from the starter clutch. I am wondering about the shape of it now, and it will come off.
Not a big deal, as I already have some spare parts. And all I might need are the rollers, push pins and springs. All available from Ebay and I am sure directly from Kawasaki. Not quite there yet though as I will need to undue the big bolt first. And that's not at the moment. The starter clutch gear is wiggling a bit - so it's possible a spacer or a shim is missing. This movement is minimal but noticeable. Perhaps this and the starter one-way assembly might produce that random noise, and it must be addressed and corrected if indeed needed.
I think someone was playing with these screws holding the ignition pick up before.
Next is the cam cover. But first a few photos of what I can see there. The vacuum valve is removed, and there is an aftermarket ignition coils block installed. It says MSD - I know the name, but no idea about this particular one used. Anyone with ideas?
The good thing is there is lots of space above the cylinder head. In fact so much, that I can simply remove all the bolts and pull out the cover without touching anything. Absolutely no hassle, unlike my A4 with all mounted as it is in stock bikes.
The cam cover is off. What a wonderful sight!! All clean, shiny, like new! I'm truly impressed. No discoloration means the engine is young, the camshafts looks new, the cam chain tensioner sprocket looks still fine, and the chain feels and looks nice and solid. I think this engine is a jackpot! Definitely, a well broken and solid yet low mileage engine.
Well, the open cylinder head got covered and secured from any dirt and dust, and now has to wait for part two. That will be checking the valve clearances after which a freshly cleaned and painted cover will go back on the engine. All the bolts are going to be replaced as well - too many rusty ones! Which make me also wonder, how long has it been since the bike had been serviced.