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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all - since the weather is not great and I'm riding a lot less these days I figured this would be a great time to get to know my bike a little better. Anyone got ideas on learning basic maint.? I have the owners manual and that got me started as to what's where but surely there's a way to teach myself what I need to know. I'm mostly concerned about being away from home alone and having problems - what would I look for, etc.....those are the things I want to learn. Suggestions on books? Videos? Classes? Any ideas would be appreciated. :mrgreen:

I did manage to put on the windshield, backrest and luggage rack on my own, I've learned how and when to to lubricate the chain - I'm thinking about making an oil change my next venture....:eek: :biggrin:

Thanks!
 

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BACK ON TWO WHEELS
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get teh factory service manual, a decent set of tools...start withthe basics

oil and filter
lube points and cables
belt/chain adj
etc...i run seafoam 1oz per gallon thru the tanks once a month
learn to strip the bike down and put it all back right
change plugs



get a good tool kits and flat tire kit...problem with spokes is if you get a flat cant plug and go
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
get teh factory service manual, a decent set of tools...start withthe basics

oil and filter
lube points and cables
belt/chain adj
etc...i run seafoam 1oz per gallon thru the tanks once a month
learn to strip the bike down and put it all back right
change plugs



get a good tool kits and flat tire kit...problem with spokes is if you get a flat cant plug and go
Will the service manual tell me step by step how to do those things you mentioned? I mean - I don't know ANYTHING about them LOL
 

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BACK ON TWO WHEELS
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yes it will...


you need basic tools tooo!

and a good torque wrench

harbor frieght has an ATV jack that works well for cruisers, i use stands for the sport bikes
 

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if you search the internet, you may be able to find the vulcan 800 svc man free downloadable
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
if you search the internet, you may be able to find the vulcan 800 svc man free downloadable
Thanks for the info - I'll search it tonight and see what I can find. I had to order the owners manual from Kawasaki though, never did find that one free. LOL
 

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you could find the MOM online for free too....
 

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I'll post a guide I made for electrical maintenance on motorcycles:

Motorcycle Electrical Maintenance

1. List of needed tools:

A. Set of pipe cleaners (found in tobacco shops).

B. Small package of cotton swabs

C. Small brass bristle brush (found at hardware stores).

D. Set of welders tip cleaners(found at welding supply stores) or a set of jewelers files.

E. Selection of 400-600 grit sandpaper

F. One can of electrical contact cleaner/preservative (The De-oxit brand at www.de-oxit.com is a good one).

G. Tube of dielectric grease as a water shield for connectors.(Optional, as some people see more problems with the grease acting more like an insulator).

H. An accurate multi-meter either digital or analog for voltage, current, and continuity checks (the digital meters may pick up “noise” from certain alternators and have fluctuating readings).

I. Self powered continuity light for basic continuity checks

J. Battery charger rated for not more than 1 to 2 amp to charge the motorcycle battery(the battery tender brand is a good one at 1.25 Amps).

K. The motorcycle factory shop manual (FSM) with the wiring diagram.

L. Set of screwdrivers and wrenches for the various fasteners.

2. Corrosion on any electrical connection is resistance and lowers the current flow. The green crud is corrosion on brass/copper terminals.

3. All electrical connections must be clean and tight or intermittent operations will result sometimes stranding the rider and can damage/destroy electrical components such as Alternator Stators, Batteries, Ignitors, Light bulbs, Switches and or related wiring.

4. Battery cables can fail internally due to corrosion and appear serviceable.

5. The male bullet connector can be scrubbed with the brass brush while the female connector with the jewelers files or tip cleaner. Both should be spritzed/wiped with a pipe cleaner moistened with contact cleaner.

6. Square and rectangular connectors must be disconnected from each other to be able to clean the contact surfaces. Again the use of files and or brass brush with a application of contact cleaner makes it operate as it should.
Re-connect the male and female parts and do another connector.

7. The battery cables condition are an area few people think about but are very important. The positive(+) RED terminal and the negative(-) BLACK terminal must be clean and tight to both the battery and to their respective connections on the motorcycle. On most Kawasaki Motorcycles the negative battery cable goes either to the frame or engine while the positive battery cable connects to the electric starter solenoid. The other terminal on the solenoid connects to the starter motor.

8. If the battery cables must be replaced, use the appropriate gauge of wire for the current draw. Use flexible cable as solid wire will not bend into tight areas. Both 6 and 8 gauge can be purchased through electrical supply houses on the internet such as Welcome to Waytek Wire, Terminal Town's Electrical Connector Home Page, and Del City - Wiring Products and Professional Electrical Supplies and sell the correct wire or cable terminations. Welding cable is very flexible and makes excellent battery cables, it’s sold by the foot and can be purchased at welding supply stores.

9. OEM style electrical connectors can be purchased at: www.easternbeaver, OEM-Type Bullet & Spade Electrical Connectors for 1960's to 1980's Japanese Vehicles... Bridgestone, Datsun, Hodaka, Honda, Kawasaki, Landcruiser, Suzuki, Tohatsu, VW, & Yamaha, Vehicle Wiring Products Ltd. Suppliers of auto electrical parts., EC - Good stuff for your Moto-scooter, Z1 Enterprises, Inc. - Specializing in Vintage Japanese Motorcycle Parts,

10. The starter solenoid function as a heavy duty relay having large contacts to close when the start signal is given from the handle bar “ start switch” and the motor turns the engine over to run.

11. When the internal return spring on the starter solenoid fails/breaks due to metal fatigue or vibration, the engine will turn over(or crank) when the key has been removed and will continue until the positive battery terminal is dis-connected from the solenoid. Just like if the large terminals were bridged with a screwdriver.
 

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there was a grea tool thread on here earlier but it disappeared with the switchover
 

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any ideas?

Im about to pick up a 1983 kawasaki kz750 spectre. I was just looking for any info on the bike. Like things I might check first.
 

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It really depends on some factors like has the bike been in storage/parked for a long time or has it been a daily driver. If it's been stored was it running when stored. Post any info you have on the bikes history.
 

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I know a lot of folks are keen on the "factory service manual". But IMHO [flame on fellas!:p ] it is way too much info for a beginner. It assumes you are familiar with the bike, having training and practice hands-on maintenance. IMO, get a Clymers manual. It is like "moto maintenance for dummies": better explainations, excellent pics, detailed instructions. Read it, don't just break it out to do stuff as Section 1 is invaluable for the beginner.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
if you search the internet, you may be able to find the vulcan 800 svc man free downloadable
I'll search it tonight, in the meantime if someone knew where I might find them right off the bat..... I'm just sayin ~ ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I'll post a guide I made for electrical maintenance on motorcycles:

Motorcycle Electrical Maintenance

1. List of needed tools:

A. Set of pipe cleaners (found in tobacco shops).

B. Small package of cotton swabs

C. Small brass bristle brush (found at hardware stores).

D. Set of welders tip cleaners(found at welding supply stores) or a set of jewelers files.

E. Selection of 400-600 grit sandpaper

F. One can of electrical contact cleaner/preservative (The De-oxit brand at www.de-oxit.com is a good one).

G. Tube of dielectric grease as a water shield for connectors.(Optional, as some people see more problems with the grease acting more like an insulator).

H. An accurate multi-meter either digital or analog for voltage, current, and continuity checks (the digital meters may pick up “noise” from certain alternators and have fluctuating readings).

I. Self powered continuity light for basic continuity checks

J. Battery charger rated for not more than 1 to 2 amp to charge the motorcycle battery(the battery tender brand is a good one at 1.25 Amps).

K. The motorcycle factory shop manual (FSM) with the wiring diagram.

L. Set of screwdrivers and wrenches for the various fasteners.

2. Corrosion on any electrical connection is resistance and lowers the current flow. The green crud is corrosion on brass/copper terminals.

3. All electrical connections must be clean and tight or intermittent operations will result sometimes stranding the rider and can damage/destroy electrical components such as Alternator Stators, Batteries, Ignitors, Light bulbs, Switches and or related wiring.

4. Battery cables can fail internally due to corrosion and appear serviceable.

5. The male bullet connector can be scrubbed with the brass brush while the female connector with the jewelers files or tip cleaner. Both should be spritzed/wiped with a pipe cleaner moistened with contact cleaner.

6. Square and rectangular connectors must be disconnected from each other to be able to clean the contact surfaces. Again the use of files and or brass brush with a application of contact cleaner makes it operate as it should.
Re-connect the male and female parts and do another connector.

7. The battery cables condition are an area few people think about but are very important. The positive(+) RED terminal and the negative(-) BLACK terminal must be clean and tight to both the battery and to their respective connections on the motorcycle. On most Kawasaki Motorcycles the negative battery cable goes either to the frame or engine while the positive battery cable connects to the electric starter solenoid. The other terminal on the solenoid connects to the starter motor.

8. If the battery cables must be replaced, use the appropriate gauge of wire for the current draw. Use flexible cable as solid wire will not bend into tight areas. Both 6 and 8 gauge can be purchased through electrical supply houses on the internet such as Welcome to Waytek Wire, Terminal Town's Electrical Connector Home Page, and Del City - Wiring Products and Professional Electrical Supplies and sell the correct wire or cable terminations. Welding cable is very flexible and makes excellent battery cables, it’s sold by the foot and can be purchased at welding supply stores.

9. OEM style electrical connectors can be purchased at: www.easternbeaver, OEM-Type Bullet & Spade Electrical Connectors for 1960's to 1980's Japanese Vehicles... Bridgestone, Datsun, Hodaka, Honda, Kawasaki, Landcruiser, Suzuki, Tohatsu, VW, & Yamaha, Vehicle Wiring Products Ltd. Suppliers of auto electrical parts., EC - Good stuff for your Moto-scooter, Z1 Enterprises, Inc. - Specializing in Vintage Japanese Motorcycle Parts,

10. The starter solenoid function as a heavy duty relay having large contacts to close when the start signal is given from the handle bar “ start switch” and the motor turns the engine over to run.

11. When the internal return spring on the starter solenoid fails/breaks due to metal fatigue or vibration, the engine will turn over(or crank) when the key has been removed and will continue until the positive battery terminal is dis-connected from the solenoid. Just like if the large terminals were bridged with a screwdriver.
:eek: :eek: :eek: This is just the beginning, isn't it? ;) Thanks for the info, I'll print this one out and take a closer look!
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I know a lot of folks are keen on the "factory service manual". But IMHO [flame on fellas!:p ] it is way too much info for a beginner. It assumes you are familiar with the bike, having training and practice hands-on maintenance. IMO, get a Clymers manual. It is like "moto maintenance for dummies": better explainations, excellent pics, detailed instructions. Read it, don't just break it out to do stuff as Section 1 is invaluable for the beginner.
Now this looks like it might be just what I need and would teach me a lot about the bike technically too. :)
 

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Now this looks like it might be just what I need and would teach me a lot about the bike technically too. :)
Absolutely! I have had/currently have Haynes/Clymers manuals for all our vehicles- cars, trucks and bikes. Again it's MHO, but they are invaluable for basic maintenance like oil and coolant changes, drive maintenance, wheel removal, filter replacements, brake work, basic electrical troubleshooting, etc. I wouldn't think of working on a vehicle without one.
 

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The bike does currently run. It was a daily rider this summer. im tradeing my 73 honda cb350 for it straight up. I know in parts my bike is probably worth more. But I wanted bigger and running. I was told that it sounds a lil funny at idle but once warmed up it runs fine. kawis :: spectre1 picture by 55fbomb - Photobucket
If you want to pursue problems and info on your bike you should really start your own thread so we don't derail BB's thread or topic.
 
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