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Discussion Starter #1
Hey guys I'm new to this forum, but looked through a few threads and knew I was at the right spot for the project I just started. I just picked up a 1977 KE 125 as a project bike. I paid less then a tank of gas for it, and now that I got it home I now see I have a lot of work in front of me.

This is my first rebuild, so sorry for the newbee questions. I checked to make sure the bike had compression, spark, and most of the components. Is there anything else I should check before starting to dump money into it? Also I'm guessing some parts are not available for this bike so should I check to make sure it has any certain parts before continuing.

Thanks for the info, and hope to be a vintage rider soon.
 

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Not To Worry, I am Here.
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Welcome to the forum, yes you have come to the right place. The KE series bikes are kind of unloved by the general motorcycle populace, but they are fine bikes and really easy to work on. Heck, the KE100 was made for 25 years. As to the KE125, I seem to remember reading that the engine parts are hard to come by, exhaust and fuel tank, heck all of the bodywork are probably a bit tough to find as well. If the bike is mostly complete, then you are ahead of the game, just be careful when taking things off not to fall into the trap of using the BFH to get things loosened up. Patience, penetrating oil, an impact tool and patience are the most important tools you will need. Oh yeah, and more patience. If you can find one, get a service manual, and check out Kawasaki.com for parts diagrams.
Check the links below for more information.
Kawasaki_KE125
KE-125 Rebuild Journal
Troubleshooting a Bike that Won't Start
 

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The rotary valve engine in these didn't change much over a number of years. My avatar bike is an 80 ke125 that I picked up cheap and restored. It's now stored at my bro's cabin north of Lake Superior and makes (after I dropped the gearing) a great little bush bike that goes forever on little gas! I was able to get pretty much all I needed off Ebay as a lot of these were made. As you have a 77, I'm not sure if you have CDI or points ignition like mine? CDI units can be expensive as I found out with my $100 77 KE175. Another thing to check is that your oil injection pump is working (if not they can run on premix). Your first step is likely to do a thorough carb cleaning and a compression check?? Forum member THEJUNKMAN is a wizard with these bikes!!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks guys I needed a little encouragement. I have started to take pictures and take down the bike the guy that owned it before me had already done some work to it I'm guessing it just became one of those projects he lost interest in. From what I can tell the carb looks brand new, so he went through it or got a new one. The only part that seems to be missing on the motor is the gear that connects the clutch cable to the shaft coming out of the motor. As far as the oil injection it seems to all be there but I will have to look into that further, or just block it off and pre mix it to play it safe.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thank you very much. I got the chance to get the bike take apart a little and it looks like the left engine case has a broken extended mounting hole, and I pretty sure the shaft going to the clutch basket is broken off on the left side where it connect to the gear from the clutch cable. Still debating on having someone look at the motor, or just make it a parts bike. I'm not sure how much I will have in a motor rebuild.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thank you it seems ebay has about all the parts I need. Here in Indiana there is a vintage swap meet the first weekend of March, so I'm going to try to just clean up what I can take inventory of what I have, and head to the swap meet find parts. I think in the long run this will help since non of my current riding buddies are into vintage projects, so it would be nice to meet some guys that enjoy it, and have experience.
 

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I'm the F_N_G !!
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Hi Usdualsport! Fellow Hoosier here and I just purchased a 77 KE 125 lastnight! I know this isn't the correct place to introduce myself but I just wanted to say hello to a fellow Hoosier as I came across your thread while doing some searching lastnight.
 

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Here is what I do when I refurbish a bike (I do NOT restore bikes as I generally don't paint them correctly and sometimes use parts that are not correct to upgrade function)....

Pull engine out and rebuild. There are almost 5000 parts available for a KE125 on eBay... full gasket sets, pistons, bearings, etc. I would just rebuild the engine and go .50 over on the piston. I would powdercoat the frame and use all new bearings... swingarm and steering stem. I would powdercoat other parts instead of paint. I would get some two-part paint in a color that took my fancy and shoot the tank and fenders. If the front fender is metal, I would toss it for a plastic fender. I know nothing about the electrics but would replace battery, coil, plug wire and add an electronic ignition (if available). I would strip the harness and clean and refurb all contacts or replace them as needed. I would rebuild the brakes and consider replacing any master cylinder for disk brakes with a modern unit. I would also replace the handlebar switches with modern.

Sounds like a lot of "stuff" but I am currently redoing a 77 KZ1000 this way and while it takes a long time, you will learn a lot and have fun doing it if you stay after it. The cheap bike you bought will get a lot more valuable to YOU (you won't get rich selling it hehe).
 

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The Junkman seems to know a lot about the small vintage Kawasakis. I haven't seen him post here in a while, but he may still have a web page &/or youtube page.
 

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Hello everyone,
I have this bike in a friend's cellar from decades, apparently everything is pretty much ok except It misses the carburetor. As far as i understood if i find the carb i can fix the bike. I don't know the production year. Can you guys please let me know the carb model so that I can manage to search the piece by its name? Thanks a lot.
IMG-20210102-WA0006.jpg
IMG-20210102-WA0007.jpg
 

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Sure guys, i'll post pics and provide the frame vin as soon as my friend comes back to the cellar and sends me the photos. Thanks a lot.
 

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There are no carbs in your pictures just a dirty old filter. A carb is a device that mixes air and fuel. You need to find one of those. I think I provided a link.
 
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