I thought I'd share some progress on my 1979 Z1300 rebuild. Sorry about the long start but it's just to put you in the picture. I bought the bike a couple of years ago as a "runner"
How a bike can run with no carbs is a question only the previous owner can answer.
Anyway after a 5 hour drive in my beaten up old van, which struggles going up hills, I thought I can't go back empty handed, (mistake number 1) I'll never learn that one, so it seems.
I shoved the carbs on loosely and squirted way to much easy start to see if it would actually fire...It certainly did and then promptly spat a fire ball out the back of the carbs and gave me an eye brow tidy and the owner a near heart attack
. Maybe I should have taken that as an omen and walked away...But I'm far too stupid for that...
When I got the bike home I set about rebuilding the carbs (they were gummed up but I could see someone had a failed go at cleaning them). I scoured this website for excellent info. The electrics were plugged in to some odd places so I gradually worked my way through them, following the wiring diagram until it all worked phew!. I was pretty pleased with myself as electrics are a bit of a mystery to me most of the time. Then I took the bike for it's first run... The tachometer and speedo didn't work. I then noticed the front wheel was on the wrong way round
I didn't even think it was possible...It is!....Ok speedo fixed (and front wheel) I fixed the tachometer following the advise on this site. The bike had obviously been sitting for a while. I also needed to rebuild the brake calipers. Ok all gauges are now working...I noticed the bike didn't like left hand turns. Then after looking at it from the front I could see the forks pointed to the right...badly. After close examination I could see the frame was bent.
It also drank oil at an alarming rate. A leakdown test revealed it to be the cylinders...of course.
I rode the bike all summer like this, but the oil consumption had me cleaning spark plugs and pouring in liters of oil after every ride! That got boring fast!
So with a twisted frame, worn out engine, And a number of other issues. (I really bought a gem didn't I)
I also couldn't stand the paintwork either What the hell was I thinking!?
Well it is a big Z
...Ok rebuild time.
Just to end this "war and peace" epic I'll post some pics and continue later....Stand by.
First pic is the bike as I bought it. Other pics are after a few rides
Well you’ve certainly got some work ahead of you, and I’m glad about that because this forum needs a regular “War and Peace” restoration thread desperately! Kawboy, Scotch and other stalwarts are getting too comfortable in their rocking chairs!
Please post regular updates!
It was fairly tidy when I got it but it was hiding so many problems.
I made a semi failed attempt at straightening the frame myself by making a boxed frame jig around the frame and bolting it to the ground I used a solid metal bar through the headstock which clearly showed how twisted it was. I attached a hydraulic ram and pushed it to the center as best I could. I'll try and find a pic of It.
The bike rode a lot better but it still wasn't right.(well I'll try anything once.) I couldn't find any professionals who could do the job so. Plan B...I managed to find another frame which has already been painted and looked good for a reasonable ish price and threw the old frame on the scrap heap.
I'm hoping this won't take too long as I want to ride it this summer. It might have to be a slightly quick and mildly dirty rebuild. It may be a bit toe curling here and there but it should be interesting.
As long as it looks ok and runs ok that'll be enough for the time being.
The bores were very glazed and after some measurements I figured I'd get away with new rings and a hone.
After waiting for over 2 months for some new piston rings UK to France plus huge customs charge, (Thanks to sour grapes from the EU over Brexit)
I painted the engine while it was out. and cleaned the valves before lapping them in.
The machine shop did the hone which unfortunately didn't quite clear it. It was close but no cigar.
Damn it! I should have just gone for oversize pistons ...