Sometimes you see a guy sputtering down the road on an aging, decrepit motorcycle, his drive chain just flapping on the swing arm and engine struggling for fuel or air — or both. He’s all smiles without a care in the world. But, sooner or later, that bike is going to wheeze out its last breath. The end will come, and hopefully he isn’t lumbering down the highway when it does.
A neglected vintage Kawasaki is a sad sight.
Sometimes, having a vintage Japanese motorcycle can seem like a full-time job. You go through bags of rags keeping it clean and polished, and you beam with pride when sunlight glints off its bits of chrome on a clear day. But spit and polish won’t keep her on the road. To remain firing on all four, a vintage KZ1000 need some TLC.
When that tachometer starts acting erratically, do you just blow it off? Are you living with an exhaust leak that’s eating away at your performance? It’s much easier to just forget about these things until the next ride, and living with a few minor annoyances can seem like it’s just part of the bargain you made when you snatched up that KZ. But it doesn’t have to be that way.
If your chain is slapping around like that poor soul up there, Z1 can hook you up with a new drive chain from RK, one of the top names in performance motorcycle racing. While you’re at it, check those old sprockets for wear. A new chain and sprocket set can make a vintage Kawasaki feel new again.
How about your spark plugs? Have you pulled them lately? A spark plug can tell you a lot about the condition of your engine. Ash on the electrodes could be a sign of failing piston rings, as they allow oil to pass into the combustion chamber where it burns up. Or, it could just mean you need to use better fuel. A blistered insulator means your iffy air/fuel mixture needs to be corrected. Or, maybe the plugs are just worn and need replacing. For the price of a couple of fast food value meals, you can have an easier-starting, meaner-running engine and the peace of mind that goes with it.
At Z1, we take pride in stocking the maintenance parts you need to keep your vintage Kawasaki, Yamaha, Honda or Suzuki running at peak level — parts like NGK spark plugs, RK chains and Sunstar sprockets.
When your old battery decides it’s had enough, Z1 has Japanese motorcycle replacement batteries from Motocell to keep you running. Don’t wait to be stranded at a gas station miles from home, handle it at the first sign of trouble.
How many oil changes since you changed your oil filter? One or two is okay, but beyond that, you’re playing with fire. Z1 has vintage Japanese motorcycle oil filters from Fram, HiFlo and EMGO to match your bike’s OEM oil filter. Changing your oil filter with every oil change helps prevent engine damage.
Z1 also has all the specialty tools you need to do your vintage Kawasaki restoration right, without causing unnecessary damage from using the wrong tool for the job. Every serious mechanic knows the value of having a detailed, accurate repair manual for every bike in his stable. Z1 has Clymer and Hayne’s manuals for many vintage Japanese motorcycles from each of the big four.
No matter what you’re working on, if it’s a vintage Japanese performance bike — rebuild, restoration or simple tune up — Z1 can get you done and back in the saddle again. What are you waiting for?
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