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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all. I swear I used to be a member here when I had my first ZX-11 but I have not been on here for a number of years so maybe I got lost.

I have had several ZX's over the past 12 years, starting with:

1991 C model (black and fuchsia I think it was 91. I know they only made that color combo for one year)
Bone stock except for 2nd gear started jumping under warranty and was replaced for the original owner that I purchased it from.

Sold it for some reason...oh yeah a friend that worked with my wife wanted it. I must have been wanting money for something else cause I let him buy it.


1992 C model that was repainted bright yellow. Scared me to go look at it as most repaints I see are horrendous but it was sweeet and probably my all time favorite bike.
Had some work done, exhaust, pipe, k&n, carbs, -1 +2. It came with extra engine for parts and had wheelie bars on it with the last guys that did some light racing with it.
This one got stolen from driveway in broad daylight!!! Never recovered.


2000 ZX-12R Was mad about the 11 getting stolen so I found a good price on one and figured if -If the 11 was great, the 12 would be even better-
Not so for me. It had exhaust, -1 front sprocket, PCIII, custom map, dyno from 150 something stock to 176.8 after mods hp....But I didn't like riding it.
Was like a R6 times 2..
Had to keep the rpms up, had to shift. I am old and lazy and was almost as old them and like to short shift and just roll the throttle on.
When I first rode a stock busa, it felt like my 11s. My yellow one was faster than stock busa to 125 or so. Busa faster on the higher end but I don't ride there much.
My 12r was faster than even a lot of modded busas but I didn't enjoy the ride as much, so I sold it.

Was bikeless and craving something so my last one was a 1978 GS 1000. Not a Kaw but didn't find a good deal on a KZ1000.
It was modded with carbs, k&n pods, coils and wires, probably some gearing, slightly stretched swing arm, air shifter, and Pingel wheelie bars.
Looked mean and fun to ride... but wouldn't keep up with my friends 95 900RR.
Needed the money...so it went far far away.

Enter current ride and reason for getting back on board...
1989 ZX-10. Doing something backwards here aren't I ???
Good looking bike it pretty nice shape. Traded for it. I wouldn't have been looking for it but for a trade....no reason not to.

Lots of work done 3K miles ago at performance shop.
Wiseco 1040 kit, lightened crank(5 lbs. sounds like a lot to me),carillo rods, milled head and ported, new starter clutch, undercut 2nd gear, barnett clutch, braided clutch line(why not brake lines too??)zx-11 intake cam, new style oil relief valve, manual cam chain tens, k&n, 532-530 chain conversion(don't really know what this means... if bigger, why are numbers smaller??)haven't counted teeth on sprockets yet,
progressive fork springs and lowered 1 3/4 (that's what it said. Don't know if it meant front-back or both.)

Anyway, it runs good and rides like my 11's did, so I like it.

I know this was the pre- zx-11 but found out not really that much in common. I think it looks a lot like my c-models.
But with the work done, it is probably as fast as my stock zx-11 c model was.
Do these have the same rod problems as 11's? I was lucky with mine and never had any mechanical probs at all. But I kept the oil full and the front wheel on the ground or pretty close to it.

Any advice, or what to be careful with?

Thanks a lot, sorry for the book, but it's late and too much Mtn Dew at dinner and can't stop the fingers.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
900rr info

Hey iron8.
I see you have a CBR900rr. My nephew has a 95rr with an engine noise.
It just started knocking one day. He replaced the cam tensioner with an adjustable one but it wasn't that.

It sounds like right side middle to upper middle only hear it at certain rpms about 4200 or so.
He never rides on one wheel and I don't think it got low on oil.

We were e thinking it was a bearing problem. Spun crank bottom or rod. Or maybe a wrist pin or upper bearing....what do they have up there anyway?

Any experience in this area or advice?

He was told it would be cheaper to buy a used good engine and stick it in vs the labor to fix this one.
I say we might as well tear it apart and learn something if this one is going to be parts and scrap anyway.

Thanks.....
 

· Quinton Phuckin Tarantino
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18,875 Posts
Thanks Iron8.

I wish we had some of that "Hot, really hot" here in Ohio.
It's not hot here now but we have a high in the low 60s for the next few days . It's still t-shirt weather in the afternoon though :mfclap
 

· Quinton Phuckin Tarantino
Joined
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18,875 Posts
Hey iron8.
I see you have a CBR900rr. My nephew has a 95rr with an engine noise.
It just started knocking one day. He replaced the cam tensioner with an adjustable one but it wasn't that.

It sounds like right side middle to upper middle only hear it at certain rpms about 4200 or so.
He never rides on one wheel and I don't think it got low on oil.

We were e thinking it was a bearing problem. Spun crank bottom or rod. Or maybe a wrist pin or upper bearing....what do they have up there anyway?

Any experience in this area or advice?

He was told it would be cheaper to buy a used good engine and stick it in vs the labor to fix this one.
I say we might as well tear it apart and learn something if this one is going to be parts and scrap anyway.

Thanks.....
The rr really isn't known for rod problems the only one I've seen blow up was some one who loved to do wheelies on the freeway :rolleyes. Mine had developed as light piston knock from the previous owner jetting the carbs wrong and running lean :eek:hno. On the bright side these engines have steel sleaves so I bored it out and threw new bearings in for good measure . That was in the early 2000s I am still running that same engine and still take it out when I'm not riding the zx . The only other thing I can think of is the clutch basket has a steel center and an aluminium outer witch is cast around the steel when you beat on the bike these come loose and rattle . As far as the wrist pin if I remember right it has a standard wrist pin with a bushing in the rod and spiral lock style clips . All that being said it is an old engine and who knows what has happened to it since 95 .
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
The rr really isn't known for rod problems the only one I've seen blow up was some one who loved to do wheelies on the freeway :rolleyes. Mine had developed as light piston knock from the previous owner jetting the carbs wrong and running lean :eek:hno. On the bright side these engines have steel sleaves so I bored it out and threw new bearings in for good measure . That was in the early 2000s I am still running that same engine and still take it out when I'm not riding the zx . The only other thing I can think of is the clutch basket has a steel center and an aluminium outer witch is cast around the steel when you beat on the bike these come loose and rattle . As far as the wrist pin if I remember right it has a standard wrist pin with a bushing in the rod and spiral lock style clips . All that being said it is an old engine and who knows what has happened to it since 95 .
It is old, but the bike is in very nice shape and not many miles as compared to most 900rr's out there. I just texted him to se how many miles but I think it is less than 10K. People ride the heck out of these things!

I really can't pin point the location or guess where it is coming from. Doesn't sound like a lower end rod knock to me, but I know cars, not bikes.
I don't think pulling the clutch in and out makes any difference if you get it to the knock rpms. Would the clutch basket issue you mentioned vary with clutch in or out?
When I first listened to it, It sounded like a piston slap to me. Slightly lower and stronger/deeper sound than a wrist pin, but not a dull and low in the block or thudding like a bottom crank bearing.

Thanks again.
 

· Quinton Phuckin Tarantino
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It is old, but the bike is in very nice shape and not many miles as compared to most 900rr's out there. I just texted him to se how many miles but I think it is less than 10K. People ride the heck out of these things!

I really can't pin point the location or guess where it is coming from. Doesn't sound like a lower end rod knock to me, but I know cars, not bikes.
I don't think pulling the clutch in and out makes any difference if you get it to the knock rpms. Would the clutch basket issue you mentioned vary with clutch in or out?
When I first listened to it, It sounded like a piston slap to me. Slightly lower and stronger/deeper sound than a wrist pin, but not a dull and low in the block or thudding like a bottom crank bearing.

Thanks again.
bike rod knocks dont sound the same because the piston generally hits the head because there is so little clearence so it almost sounds like two rapid hits at almost the same time, one is the piston to the head the other is the crank to the rod so it sounds too fast to be a rod but... there is really only one way to tell tear that thing down. I know I'm a really big help :tard.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
It almost sounds like an upper sound of the piston hitting the head...that would be like a wrist pin sound but louder and stronger.
I checked with him. It has 25K on it. The sound is only there at 6000 or so rpms and a lot lounder under load although you can still hear it with no load at the same rpms..

I figured we would have to tear it down and see what it looked like. I suspect we will find bad big end rod bearings....Then we will need a crank. It is a 95 so I thought it had the old engine but he said it has a 96 .....or the new one. How do I tell for sure?

Thanks.
 

· Quinton Phuckin Tarantino
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18,875 Posts
It almost sounds like an upper sound of the piston hitting the head...that would be like a wrist pin sound but louder and stronger.
I checked with him. It has 25K on it. The sound is only there at 6000 or so rpms and a lot lounder under load although you can still hear it with no load at the same rpms..

I figured we would have to tear it down and see what it looked like. I suspect we will find bad big end rod bearings....Then we will need a crank. It is a 95 so I thought it had the old engine but he said it has a 96 .....or the new one. How do I tell for sure?

Thanks.
The 96 is 919 cc's and I think the 95 is like 890 something cc's I think the bores are bigger but you might wa.t to check .
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I read somewhere that it is stamped on the side of case somewhere. It is that easy? Couldn't be.

Doesn't really matter until we get it apart and need a crank. Apparently the old ones are scarce and more expensive and the newer bigger ones are plentiful and quite a bit cheaper.

Now I will have to figure out how to use plastigauge on bike bearings. Done lots of car engines. Even doctored a few by sanding down the crank with crocus cloth and usung some dial calipers to keep it as round as possible....LOL then getting it so a .010 bearing would give it about .0025-
.003 clearance.
Always went a little on the loose side since I knew it would be a little egg shaped at best and didn't want it to grab and spin the bearing shells.
About .0032 the you can hear a very slight noise but thicker oil helps that.

I ran into one guy who said he used to build race car engines at a little over
.003 rod clearances to make them spin easier for less friction and more hp.
Said you could alway hear some clicking in the pan.

Oh well, back on topic.

I see that bikes have color coded bearing shells instead of over size stamps.
And I see that on a factory untouched engine you can have 3 or one color (size) and one different???? Is this true or COMMON?
This is NUTS!! Can't believe they do this and don't have more problems with new bikes.
It seems to me the engine quality control on mainstream motorcycle engines is very very high and initial failure rate very very low.

Don't see how they pull this off, or how it occurs in mass production where each part of 1000's should be EXACTLY like the others and fit prefectly.
(well within spec tolerances)

Anyway, do you plastigauge a honda 900rr rod bearing the same way as a car? Dry shell, crossway piece of plastigauge, tourque to specs, then measure.
Are the bolts reusable and not torque to yield....crap.

Thanks to any who can shed some experience my way. This will be my first tear down. My nephew said he has the shop manual but I haven't looked at it yet. I have the one for my zx-10 that I have read a couple of times.

Thanks
 

· Quinton Phuckin Tarantino
Joined
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18,875 Posts
I read somewhere that it is stamped on the side of case somewhere. It is that easy? Couldn't be.

Doesn't really matter until we get it apart and need a crank. Apparently the old ones are scarce and more expensive and the newer bigger ones are plentiful and quite a bit cheaper.

Now I will have to figure out how to use plastigauge on bike bearings. Done lots of car engines. Even doctored a few by sanding down the crank with crocus cloth and usung some dial calipers to keep it as round as possible....LOL then getting it so a .010 bearing would give it about .0025-
.003 clearance.
Always went a little on the loose side since I knew it would be a little egg shaped at best and didn't want it to grab and spin the bearing shells.
About .0032 the you can hear a very slight noise but thicker oil helps that.

I ran into one guy who said he used to build race car engines at a little over
.003 rod clearances to make them spin easier for less friction and more hp.
Said you could alway hear some clicking in the pan.

Oh well, back on topic.

I see that bikes have color coded bearing shells instead of over size stamps.
And I see that on a factory untouched engine you can have 3 or one color (size) and one different???? Is this true or COMMON?
This is NUTS!! Can't believe they do this and don't have more problems with new bikes.
It seems to me the engine quality control on mainstream motorcycle engines is very very high and initial failure rate very very low.

Don't see how they pull this off, or how it occurs in mass production where each part of 1000's should be EXACTLY like the others and fit prefectly.
(well within spec tolerances)

Anyway, do you plastigauge a honda 900rr rod bearing the same way as a car? Dry shell, crossway piece of plastigauge, tourque to specs, then measure.
Are the bolts reusable and not torque to yield....crap.

Thanks to any who can shed some experience my way. This will be my first tear down. My nephew said he has the shop manual but I haven't looked at it yet. I have the one for my zx-10 that I have read a couple of times.

Thanks
first question first the cc's of the engine are on the front of the engine I believe . second the colored bearings have been a honda standard as far back as the original 750 single over head cam engine (you know the one from the 70's). if you look at the difference between the biggest and the smallest bearing it is miniscule. the bearing colors are stamped into the cases in code of course the factory service manual breaks it down for you . the colors are a way of getting an ultra tight clearence from the factory (it's actually a good thing) . these rods ore not torque to yield witch is really more acurate the only other way of torquing the rod bolts any more acuratly is useing a bolt stretch guage. the plastiguage is used the same way as a car engine.if you need I can p.m. you some pictures of the factory service manual about the bearing sizing.
 
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