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1983 Kawasaki KZ1100 LTD Restoration

6663 Views 24 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  Bwild

It's been almost a year since I have been on the forum. Amber has been sitting in the garage but now I could use her services. She needs some top end work as she is burning oil, leaking oil at the head, leaking oil at the base cover and now starter won't work. It spins free and I believe the starter clutch is at fault.

I have began the tear down in the frame and already messed up as I forgot to label the valve buckets and was surprised to find no shims under the buckets. I will post pics and update progress soon.
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Partzilla diagram does not show an o ring on the crankcase.
Kawasaki Motorcycle 1983 OEM Parts Diagram for CRANKCASE | Partzilla.com.
but it does show 4 of them on the top of the cylinder block. At least it appears to be at the top. Hard to say for sure. Have a look and see if this helps.

Any idea what that hole is for? If base gasket covers it, what is its purpose? If this is oil supply to the cylinder head you gotta get it right obviously. I hope someone who has recently torn down their engine can definitively answer your question.
I have to confess to never having torn down a 4 cylinder Kawasaki to the crankcase level. The engines were so reliable we never had the occasion to need to strip one down, so I don't know where the oil feeds are for the valve train. But one speculation is that it could use the very hole your finger is pointing to. Note that the hole is surrounded by a groove that joins the hole to the cylinder head stud. The hole in the cylinder block is larger than the stud, thus providing a passageway directly to the cylinder itself.

If you study the cylinder head itself you may be able to locate oil feed holes. Try following the oil feed holes that are in the camshaft bearings to see where they go. If you plug or seal off the hole on the crankcase, you may starve your cylinder head of oil. Be careful.
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Correct but it won't be a splash of oil. I have confirmed that the oil will be pumped under pressure and will follow the stud up to the cylinder head. As I recall these engines have very low oil pressure (less than 5 PSI) but that is plenty to get the oil up to the cylinder head. Putting an o-ring under the base gasket would impede or prevent flow of oil to the stud.

Good progress on the valves.
Looks like a very thorough job. I also soaked my carb boots with wintergreen and it worked great at making them as pliable as new. The problem with mine however was that they had shrunk in length and that made it impossible to make them fit properly. Hopefully yours are ok.
Reflecting back to my situation, I rec'd the bike as a "project". The carbs and airbox were removed so it is possible, that the boots were not even for this bike. When I compared the old ones to the new ones they were almost 1/4" too short. No wonder I could not get them to work.
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