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Gasket Killer
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just picked up an '82 KZ1000, nice ride. It had sat for a little bit, a little over a year or so. The carbs were a little gunked up, so I pulled 'em out and cleaned out the bottom ends.

Some fresh gas, it started up good. Idles rough, if you give some throttle it revs good but takes it's sweet time dropping the revs. I was told that the carbs had been re-jetted and that it used to run hot, but that it was rich. Sure enough, I can smell it being rich. I'm not too worried about it being rich, but the running hot and the slow return to a rough idle is something I'm not used to dealing with.

Figured that next weekend I'd get to check the timing, throw some new plugs in it and see what y'all had to say on putting some seafoam in the carbs to see if it would take care of some gunk that I didn't get at.

I did not completely take the carbs apart. I didn't even crack open the upper slide covers or anything of the like. They seemed to move pretty decently, but since I didn't have any gasket kits I didn't want to press my luck with messing anything up.

I am an ASE Master Mech, but I'm used to dealing with newer stuff and fuel injected vehicles.

I've had a couple of Kawi's, KZ400 back in the day, ZG1000 Concours and now this. I've always wanted a 1000, now I have it. I think I'm gonna enjoy this!
 

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A popular carb cleaning guide:

Carb Cleaning 101

By M. Shively

The elements of internal combustion engines are: correct fuel/air ratio, spark at right time, and adequate cylinder compression.

There are many passageways and openings to check and clean. All are important in function and when obstructed or not working properly, have subtle to radical effects on engine performance. Vacuum leaks and carburetor synchronization also effect performance and should be inspected and adjusted following the below procedures.


Warning: Remove all rubber parts before you begin. These parts usually include vacuum diaphragms, needle valves, o'rings, hoses, and other parts. Spray cleaners will damage these parts. Do not disassemble individual carbs from the carb bracket.

Air & Fuel Passageways: Trace and learn individual fuel and air circuits from beginning to end. Machines can only drill straight through the cast passageways. To change direction, another angled passageway must be drilled. The union is plugged with a brass or bronze bead. Inspect and clean each passageway with spray cleaner, brushes/pipe cleaners/etc, and compressed air. Remove any discoloration and debris. Look for spray cleaner to exit from one or more passageways.

Jet Cleaning: Inspect jets by holding to light and look through them. You should see an unobstructed round hole. Clean the jets with one or more of the following: jet cleaning wires, soak solutions, carb spray cleaners and compressed air. Re-inspect jets after cleaning and install when clear of obstructions. Some main jets have paper-like gaskets. Most have metal spacers between the jet and the emulsion tube. Some screw directly into a brass emulsion tube which is machined for a 7mm wrench at its float chamber exposed base.

Inlet Fuel Valve: Inspect the needle valve & spring. Press down the tiny metal rod that protrudes from the butt or float end of the needle valve. The spring should move freely and return the rod to its location. Check the needle valve's seat area for a groove or other wear. It should appear highly polished. Some needle valve seats are rubber and wear may not be visible. Inspect the needle valve jet seat. You can clean the jet seat with Q-tips and semi-chrome polish if necessary.

Carb Body Castings: Blow air through the atmospheric vent holes located on the dome of each float bowl chamber. Air should exit via hoses or brass nipples. Inspect the emulsion tubes and passageways (cast towers that jets thread into) for discoloration and debris. Clean interior emulsion towers with a soft bristle gun cleaning brush. Clean each Venturi (main carb bore).

Needle Jets & Jet Needles: Clean the needle jets, jet needles, and passageway or tower that needle jet screws into. Clean the emulsion tube (pipe between needle jet and main jet) (Main Jet may screw into emulsion tube). Jet needles are part of the throttle slides. See below…

Throttle Slides: There are several types of throttle slides: Mechanical linkage, vacuum, diaphragm, and cable. Disassembling the jet needle from the slide is not always required for cleaning. If you have vacuum piston type throttle slides (large diameter solid metal slide), avoid cleaning the lubrication from sides and caps. If piston type check cap vents and passageways with air. Clean if necessary and re-lube. If you have rubber vacuum throttle diaphragms, inspect for dry-rot, defects, and tears by gently stretching rubber away from center. Do this until all areas around diaphragm have been inspected. Replace any defective part as described above. Clean carb body areas around diaphragm including air passageways and air jets. Diaphragms have a locator loop or tab fabricated into their sealing edge. Observe this locator upon reassembly. Avoid pinching the diaphragm when reinstalling caps.

Fuel Screws: Fuel screws have sharp tapered ends. Carefully turn one fuel screw in while counting the turns until it seats lightly. Warning: These screws are very easily damaged if over tightened into their seats. Record amount of "turns-in" and remove the fuel screw, spring, washer, and o'ring. The fuel screw is part of the enrichment (choke) circuit...clean passageways as described above. When carbs are assembled, spray low PSI compressed air into diaphragm air vents located at intake side of carbs. Throttle slides should rise, then fall when air is removed. Lightly lube external moving linkages. Reinstall carbs and follow through with carburetor synchronization.

Throttle Cables: Lubricate cables periodically. If cables are disconnected from carbs or removed for replacement, etc . . . remember cable routing and ensure proper reinstallation routing. Avoid bread-tying, sharp bends, and pinching cables. Adjust cables so throttle grip has about 5mm of play or throttle slides or butterfly valves may not open completely (full throttle)(wide full open).

Float Bowls: Inspect float bowls for sediment, gum or varnish, crystallization, and defects. Clean all pipes, tubes, passageways, and embedded jets with cleaners and compressed air. Remove and clean the drain screw and area. Inspect bowl gasket and replace if necessary. Clean and inspect overflow pipes and tubes, look for vertical cracks.

Floats: There are several types of float materials: plastic, brass, black composite, tin, and others. Handle floats carefully. Avoid bending, twisting, denting, or other means of mishandling. Most floats are adjustable by bending a small metal tab near the float axle end. Do not change the float adjuster tab unless tuning fuel service levels. Clean metal floats by soaking or by spraying cleaner and wiping clean. Other material type floats may require replacement if cleaning is necessary. Inspect the needle valve (float valve) and seat. Check needle valve's spring loaded pin. It should depress and return smoothly and without resistance. Check the needle valve's tip for a worn groove. Replace needle valve and seat if either symptom exists. These parts wear together and must be replaced as a set.

Synchronization: This is a fine adjustment performed usually and preferably with the carbs installed and the engine running. The unusual part is performed with gauged wire with the carbs on the work bench. Carburetor synchronizing balances Venturi vacuum at the exhaust side of each carburetor, resulting with smooth idling and optimized performance at all throttle openings. Synchronization is checked using a set of gauges which are either air vacuum type or liquid mercury type. The gauges are connected to vacuum ports on the intake manifolds via nipple tubes or if sealed with screws, sync gauge adapters will be needed. With the engine running at temperature, and with a fan or means of forced convection aimed onto the engine, the carbs fuel screws and idle are adjusted, then the synchronization is adjusted via adjustment screws on the carbs. A reserve fuel tank is recommended for convenience of accessing carbs during this procedure. See gauge instructions and repair manuals for detailed use of synchronization gauges.

Notes: While carbs are apart, record the jet sizes. Look for a very small number imprinted on the body of the jets. Verify that numbers are the same for all jets on models with in-line cylinders. A few transverse-4 models and V-engines, the inner and outer carbs use some different size jets and it's important to not mix them up. If you have dial or veneer calipers, measure and record float heights. Perform measurements with floats just touching needle valves, though not depressing the needle valve rods. Replace fuel and vacuum hoses. Be sure to use fuel rated hose for fuel. Install or replace in-line fuel filters. It's a good time to remove and clean interior petcock fuel filters. Inspect carb manifolds for dry-rotting, inspect all clamps and air ducts. Inspect, clean, lube, and/or replace air filter(s).
 

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Lemon Juice Carb Cleaning(Found on the internet)

If it was me, I'd pull the top covers off, pull the slides out, drop off the bottom bowls, remove pilots/mains. Then with the rest of the carbs still assembled boil them in some lemon juice. You'll need a big roaster pan, a little over a gallon of lemon juice (cooking supply stores), and an understanding wife/girlfriend cause the sh*ts gonna stink a little.

Boil them for about 15 minutes, then rinse them really well and blow them dry with compressed air (make sure all passages are clean). You'll be amazed at how clean they come in that short of a time.

I just did a set yesterday after hearing about it from a buddy who's used lemon juice on a couple dozen racks of carbs. After a couple of minutes at slow boil the lemon juice starts to foam up a little (careful not to boil over) and you can see all the sh*t just dissolving.

After boiling them for 15 minutes (might have to roll them around once to make sure you get the entire carbs) rinse them really well and blow them dry with compressed air. The carb bodies will be kinda chalky looking at this point. I used a toothbrush and PB blaster to put a little luster back into them and then put my internals back in.

I had pulled the bowls off, removed the floats, float needles and seats, jets, and air/pilot screws as well as the top covers and slides just to make sure no crap got itself wedged inside those passages.
After putting the carbs back together and bolting them up not only do they look great but the bikes running MUCH better with all the jet passages finally cleaned out.
 

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When I first got my bike it wouldn't idle without the choke even when warmed up. Put seafoam in and it improved but would eventually idle(rough) without the choke after running for a while. But eventually the issue would come back. Taking the carbs off, soaking all jets in a can of carb cleaner, and spraying carb cleaner in all the little orifices inside the throttle bodies followed with a can of compressed air did the trick for me.
 

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Gasket Killer
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116 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I was thinking I was going to have to take 'em back off. Looks like I'll be ordering some gaskets and whatnot. The bowl gaskets didn't look too good and I was afraid of tearing into them further without having some replacements around.

I've never used seafoam before, didn't know if it was a good alternative for some dirty pilot jets or not. Guess not.

I could see why the aluminum carbs would look chalky after a lemon bath, the acid in the bath would 'burn' the aluminum. I'd rather just get actual carb cleaner and soak the rack in that. Makes 'em purty!

Thanks fellas, appreciate the input.

You think the slides could be the cause of the slow to return to idle issue I'm having as well?
 

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Navy Vet Search & Rescue
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Seafoam may help and may even fix your problem but it's no substitute for a good cleaning. If you open them up again, you should at least make a note of what size jets you have in it for future reference. The slow return to idle could be a few things like air/vacuum leak, dirty slides/carbs, dry/binding throttle cable etc.
 

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Theres no substitute for a good blast down the road either.Idling in a driveway is fine but the real test is when you get it under load.You'll be surprised how much better these air cooled 4's get when warmed up.Get a few gallons of gas through it.Timing is not adjustable on these. The tops of those BS 34 carbs don't need to come apart normally-those diaphragms don't like gas/ethanol/carb cleaner.
 

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Gasket Killer
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Why would you say not to take the tops off the carbs? Those air passages can get scrungy like anything else and if I'm going to soak the rack, they'd need to come off anyway.

I'm going to order some gasket sets for this thing.

I did take it down the road for a bit, backing out of the throttle was interesting due to the slow idle return. I think I've got some idle jets plugged. Plus I can order some intake boots, some air cleaner boots and make sure they're all set for this summer's fun-fest.

I just applied to the Colorado School of Mines (Colorado's version of MIT out east) for my Mechanical Engineering Bachelor's degree, so I would like to use this for my commuting from downtown D-town to Golden every day. Now that's something I can look forward to!

I'm going to do some searching, but is there an electronic ignition conversion for these as well? I'm thinking she still has points, but haven't looked. I need to get a book.

Clymer still good to get?
 

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You already have electronic ignition. Clymer is OK but if you know your way around a bike, the factory manual is better. I used a clymer for many years and finally found a good price on a good condition factory manual a couple of years ago so now I have both.
 

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If you look inside a CD sized cover on the right side of the engine, there should be a mechanical ignition advancer along with two pickup coils for the Kawasaki electronic ignition.

Under the left side cover(below the seat) should also be an aluminum finned package with the words"IC Igniter" stamped on it. It actually gives the ignition coils their grounds firing the coils and sparkplugs.

As you sit on the seat, the sparkplugs are numbered left to right, #1,#2,#3,&#4.
The left ignition coil has two ports and goes to #1, and #4 and the right ignition coil, again has two ports goes to #2 and #3. It makes no difference as where the sparkplug wires go from the coils as the ports are wired together as long as the correct coil is hooked up properly.

The primary(small wires) are connected with 1/4" push on terminals. A RED wire is the hot side of the coils and will go to each one. The left coil will have a BLACK wire and the right coil will have a GREEN wire.

Replacement igniters are pricey, but a wizard at www.kzrider.com(Loudhvx) has designed a suitable replacement using GM electronic modules. He has run his design for many thousands of miles with no problems.

If you're good at building circuits, this can save a lot of $$ if your bike's igniter is failing/going bad.

General Motors HEI Ignition Module For GPZ550

I researched a cross index number for the module:

HEI Ignition Modules (4 Pin)


AC DELCO ----------------------- DM 1906 or D1906

WELLS -----------------------------DR 100

ACCEL -----------------------------ACC 35361/ACC 35367

PERTRONIX ---------------------D2000

CAR QUEST ---------------------21040

NAPA ECHLIN ------------------ECH TP45

NIEHOFF --------------------------DR 400

BORG WARNER ----------------Select CBE4/CBE22

GM-----------------------------------10482820

Mallory------------------------------607

Jegs---------------------------------- 555-40600

Moroso------------------------------97857
 

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Gasket Killer
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thanks! I'll be checking out factory manuals then. Good to know that I've got electronic ignition from the getgo. I remember futzing around with the points on my old SR500, made the mistake of washing it at a car wash (my first bike, I was 16, wish I had that one back) and walking it a couple of miles home.

I ordered new intake carb holders last night. I also rummaged through the box-o-stuff that I got with the bike (you know the standard "Hey, I won't need these any more" stuff) and found 4 brand new air cleaner boots, 4 new boot clamps, a bunch of hose, factory hose clamps, new roller chain, new sprockets and receipts for everything.

I do remember seeing it had 122.5 mains in the carb as well. When I get my gaskets, I'll find out the pilot sizes too.

Off to find some parts/pieces.
 

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Gasket Killer
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
And according the VIN (I just got around to checking it out), I own an LTD. So it's not a J.

What's special about an LTD vs. the standard J? I'm assuming rims but other than that? Nothing carb wise I'm hoping, because I ordered those carb holders.

Anyway, off to Z1 for some gaskets.
 

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Navy Vet Search & Rescue
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If it's an LTD it should look exactly like mine, minus the mods I've made to mine. The LTD vs. standard just gets minor changes or bells and whistles as some refer to them. Like more chrome, electronic gauges, self canceling signals, wheels, etc.
 

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Gasket Killer
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I looked over your ride's pics Stargate, very nice! I'd like to talk to you more about that, if I may.

Love the bars! Which ones are they?

Everything else looks to be the same as I have. Same gauges, rims, most everything else. So I guess I do have an LTD. Cool!

Off to read more on your ride. Still have to make it mine though. ;)
 

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Ohm Checking Pickup(Pulsing) Coils For the Kawasaki Electronic Ignition

The pickup coils on the Kawasaki’s with the factory supplied electronic ignition can sometimes fail or become intermittent due to heat and vibration.

1.Trace back from where the coils are mounted,(under a right side CD sized cover) locate and disconnect a small 4 pin connector. Using a multimeter set on OHMS and range of X 100 check between the BLUE and BLACK wires(#1 and #4 sparkplug wires) for between 360- 540 OHMS.

2.For #2 and #3 sparkplugs the wire colors will be YELLOW and RED, again 360-540 OHMS.

3.If the pickup coils are suspect of failing due to heat, they can be stressed using a hair dryer without the need of the engine running.

4.A replacement set of pickup coils might be obtained from a dealer who serviced the police Kawasaki’s.

5. If replacement pickup coils are not available, your next choice would be to order a Dyna “S” electronic ignition system from Z1 Enterprises, Inc. - Specializing in Vintage Japanese Motorcycle Parts It replaces the IC igniter with a smaller module located where the mechanical ignition advancer was mounted.
 

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Starter Solenoid Checkout(For When Nothing Happens When The Start
Button is Pushed)
Some simple steps to determine what is working and what's not:

1.Fully charge and test the battery(most bike shops can load test the battery, and then use a floating ball hydrometer to check specific gravity in the charged cells).

2.Clean all battery terminals of corrosion.

3.Tighten all starting related connections(Positive RED(+) battery terminal, Negative BLACK(-)terminal) and from the terminal to the engine case. All connections must be clean and tight.

4.Clean the cable from the starter solenoid to the starter motor.

5.Clean and check the "bullet connectors" going to the coil side of the starter solenoid.

6.Try again to start the bike.

7.If no luck, go to step #8

8.Wearing eye protection, bridge with pliers or a screwdriver the two heavy duty(large)terminals on the solenoid. If the bike cranks, your solenoid may be bad.

9. If the starter won’t turn over, one of several things has happened; The starter motor has seized due to brushes binding up, lack of lubrication in the bushings of the motor, the battery is weak , the engine has seized or it could be a combination of any of the above. Some websites for starter motor rebuild kits are:

A. RICK'S MOTORSPORT ELECTRIC STARTER BRUSHES
B.http://www.cyclewareables.com/pages/street_startermotor_repair_kits/startmtrkit.htm

10.The dealer may want $$$ for a new solenoid, but take your old one along and visit the nearest riding lawn mower shop. They have solenoids for about $15 that with a little work will fit.

11. I’d recommend upgrading from the existing battery cables to at least 6 gauge welding cables.
They are available in two colors(RED and BLACK) have more flexibility due to being constructed with finer conductors, and will fit in tighter areas.

12. The welding cable is sold by the foot ,so take careful measurements or bring your old cables along. Most battery shops might be able to supply the cable too, so call to find out. The battery shop should be able to crimp/swage on the end of the welding cable the terminal ends or lugs using either a dedicated crimping machine or a tool that looks like a bolt cutter that has special dies to terminate the cable.
 
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