Kawasaki Motorcycle Forums banner
61 - 80 of 118 Posts

·
Administrator
Joined
·
3,598 Posts
I expect all air has leaked out unless someone recently replaced all o-rings and seals.

I replaced both of my ZN1100 fork seals.
I found rust inside mine on the springs mostly. I think someone used a compressor that was not supplying dry air. The moisture caused the rust.

A hand tire pump is the best way as Kawasakian suggested.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
57 Posts
Discussion Starter · #62 ·
So I just got the wire soldered on where it was. I didn't reset the wires back to how they go because I'm not sure which slot the black white traced wire goes into on the junction box 20 slot harness. It cranked but not strong enough to start on its own. An extra 10 amps from a charger got it to crank fast enough to start. Warms up and idles good. The battery was dropping to 9&8 volts during cranking when it wouldn't start. I had my father hold the start button while I checked with a multimeter. Then it started with a charger giving it some extra power. I know it's not a good idea to do that but I wanted to at least make sure it would run again. Maybe it needs a starter idk. I don't know enough about the forks and electrical to fix it anytime soon. The files WFO-KZ sent we're helpful but didn't clearly tell me which slot the black and white wire goes to in the 20 slot junction box harness. I don't even know how to tell which wire is what number slot of the harness. This bike would be better off in someone else's hands who's more experienced and knowledgeable. However, I am happy that it still runs after getting the wire reattached. All my bikes need fork seals except the 89 ninja because it was done just before I bought it. Then someone had to mess up the way the starter functions before I got to thoroughly enjoy it. So now it only starts right after I've push started it and got it hot. Then it starts fine. Basically, I need newer motorcycles or more tools and knowledge to fix the beaters I have. I appreciate all the responses and information I received here.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
314 Posts
I think you may have a bad starter motor that is sucking too many amps, could be bad bearings, the reason it starts when warm is the bearings loosen up. If you take out the starter motor, it should spin freely in your hand, with the normal magnetic resistance. ;)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
57 Posts
Discussion Starter · #64 ·
I have taken it out once to check the teeth of the gear it meshes with. Says carbs have to come out and they coolant pipe but I got it out and in pretty easy. The little gear on the starter could spin both directions by hand and had a very slight resistance or drag. I didn't hit the button to see which way it spun though. The gear inside spins only one way which is how it's supposed to be I think. It did seem to have some back and forth wobble/play though when I gently wiggled it back and forward at the 12'oclock position. The teeth looked okay like not broken but idk maybe they're worn down some. Idk what they should look like. Before and after I removed the starter when it had this problem start sometimes it would seem as if something was out of alignment and would mesh but not properly so there was a straining/grinding noise. Predominantly it just does "the skips" when cold starting. Starts like brand new when hot. So I guess I'll try rebuilding/having it rebuilt or possibly looking for a replacement to try. I posted the best picture I could of some of the teeth on the gear that mates the starter with the picture of the bike the seller actually used to list it for sale 😆
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
3,598 Posts
There are two reason for a battery to dip that low on cranking:
1) too much mechanical resistance.
2) battery no longer has enough cranking capacity.

In regards to your connectors. If you look really closely with a bright light and maybe a magnifying glass, you should see very tiny numbers printed beside each connector slot. They may be on the front or back of the connector.

Here is an example, of how tiny and hard to see these numbers can be. This is zoomed way in. I know this is not a motorcycle connector, but its just an example.

Rectangle Automotive lighting Electric blue Font Plastic
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
57 Posts
Discussion Starter · #66 ·
There are two reason for a battery to dip that low on cranking:
1) too much mechanical resistance.
2) battery no longer has enough cranking capacity.

In regards to your connectors. If you look really closely with a bright light and maybe a magnifying glass, you should see very tiny numbers printed beside each connector slot. They may be on the front or back of the connector.

Here is an example, of how tiny and hard to see these numbers can be. This is zoomed way in. I know this is not a motorcycle connector, but its just an example.

View attachment 44532
Wow I didn't know they could have numbers on them. I have some small magnifiers/loupes I could try using. I also didn't know that was too low. It did go lower than that like 7-6 volts the day I rode it and the problem occurred after refuelling. It definitely does seem like resistance of some kind. Like the battery might be putting out enough but not all of it is being used at the starter? There was all that corrosion build up on the middle harness plug on the left side of the battery ha. Idk how good it is but AutoZone checked the battery for me and it said it was good. It's one of the sealed agm batteries and I've had really good experiences with them. They use different battery testers near me now. I feel like they used to use better ones when I worked at an AutoZone and then advance auto store. But maybe the little thing they use now is actually better idk.

I bought a bike with a five year old AutoZone battery in it and it lasted for 5 more years! No tender through 5 Ohio winters and it would start the bike each spring with no top up. It did finally start to get weak and then barely work at all but I thought it was kind of cool how it lasted so long.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
3,598 Posts
So if you cannot read the numbers on your junction box, this diagram provides them. What you are looking at is a view of the 3 connectors on the back of the junction box. Knowing this, and with other wiring diagrams you can figure out where wires need to go. But I hear you. It's a lot of work and even gives me a headache when I need to do it. Vintage bikes are not for everyone and there is no shame in selling it and getting something newer.

But if you want to keep going, or take a rest and come back, we will be here to help you if we can.

No idea what Autozone used to check your battery. Hopefully they did not just use a voltmeter. I have seen some shops do this and its a joke and meaningless. I guess if it were me, before tearing the starter out, I would take the battery to a different place and get it tested. They should provide you with a data sheet showing the health of your battery.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
57 Posts
Discussion Starter · #68 ·
Okay but yeah it was just a little blue thing that looked like an obd scan tool about the size of a wallet. It said good in like 2 seconds. When I worked at advance auto parts they had a pretty cool one that would check charging system too and show you a graph of that plus the starter cranking. I'll go there AutoZone was just closer.

I really don't want to sell it because I always regret selling bikes and I even mean that with the buel blast I had 😆 maybe the forks are easier than I'm making it out to be. I know making the brake line flares to fix the rusted line on my girlfriend's car was not that bad. It was being under the car with little room that was the biggest issue. I just think nightmare when it comes to forks because I'd have to strap the bike up somehow and I watched videos by vashdaytona on YouTube for my yzf and as thorough and detailed as he was it just seemed like a daunting task. Plus I either need a special tool or 3/4" square steel stock bar to disassemble those ones all the way. I do feel like ice received good help though thanks.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
3,598 Posts
Simple solution. Drain out the old fork fluid and add fresh and see how long that lasts. If the leak is slow and you don't mind wiping up some weeping oil, you might never have to swap seals.

Also why mess with making your own brake lines? You can buy OEM pre-made lines or go for some aftermarket lines. Lots of choice.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
57 Posts
Discussion Starter · #70 ·
Okay I'll search how to do that. They definitely gushed out though from riding and sitting again. I'd be afraid to ride it with refilled forks unless new oil leaks less for some reason.

And idk, I made a 2' splice because I would've had to buy a roll and double flare the ends anyway to redo the whole piece. I couldn't get a pre-made OEM line in time. I didn't use a compression fitting or anything. I know a double flare union isn't much better but I didn't know what was the best way to go with only 1 day to get it done and no experience in making them before. Now that I have a flaring set I will probably redo the whole line from the M.cylinder to the junction in the rear. It had a rusted section that's supposed to be somewhat protected by a plastic cover but it just helped to keep stuff in the line in that area that rusted it prematurely. The rest of the lines are clean.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
3,598 Posts
If someone overfilled the forks or had the wrong oil, it might exacerbate the leakage. You could try a product like "Seal Mate". (no affiliation)

If you are comfortable making your own brake lines, then go for it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
57 Posts
Discussion Starter · #72 ·
If someone overfilled the forks or had the wrong oil, it might exacerbate the leakage. You could try a product like "Seal Mate". (no affiliation)

If you are comfortable making your own brake lines, then go for it.
Okay, I was wary of using any sealing products in forks. I'll come back here if I can't figure out how they're supposed to be filled.

Also I sure wasn't comfortable doing those double flares and studying the relavant information so I got the right fittings and everything. I was already pretty good at bleeding different kinds of calipers and wheel cylinders so I guess I gained some more knowledge. She had to have her brakes fully functional again so I was sort of rushed. I've been checking every day with white towels under the lines trying to find a drip and do far so good. The fluid in the res hasn't dropped a hair.

On the bright side I just got spark to a guys 94zx7r. He was struggling to get it started after replacing ignition due to a wallor'd out ignition. I swapped the old bottom internals to his new switch body and it is backfiring out carb#1 and the exhaust now. Didn't actually run but his tank isn't hooked up and I'm sure the carbs are dry/plugged so I'll be working on it's other problems too.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
3,598 Posts
Seal Mate is not what you think it is. It is a tool for removing the dirt from inside the seal which may be causing an otherwise good seal to leak.

Note: I have no first hand experience with Seal Mate but for $15 it might be worth a try. It works without having to take your forks apart.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
57 Posts
Discussion Starter · #74 ·
I'll see if I can order some online. It's probably not as hard as I'm thinking it is. If the guy I helped today was able to do his fork seals on a newer shadow then I should be able to on an older bike. He had to cut a large Alan key to make a custom bit that he used to unbolt a bolt on the bottom of his fork cartridges or something like that. I checked his forks and they weren't leaking.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
3,598 Posts
With the right tools, it is not that hard to replace fork seals. You need a 22 mm male hex socket, and a very long socket extension, and an allen key to keep the other end of the rod from spinning. See photos below of my ZN1100. The electrical tape is just to make sure the socket does not come off the extension if it gets stuck.

Automotive tire Yellow Wood Finger Gear

Grey Eyewear Material property Audio equipment Tints and shades

Table Office supplies Tool Metalworking hand tool Paint brush
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
57 Posts
Discussion Starter · #76 ·
I see, sort of how I used tape like that to get plugs out of a zx7. Is there a write up here for zn1100 fork rebuild? Or one that's applicable to the zn1100?
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
3,598 Posts
The ZN series is a rare breed being only made in 1984 and 85 so there is not too much out there. But forks don't vary much in that era, so a KZ of that vintage would be very similar. I just used the Partzilla diagrams and my factory service manual.

If I were to do it again, I would swap out the OEM springs with some good progressive rate springs. Even though the overall spring length of mine was within factory spec, lets face it; 1984 suspension technology is nowhere near as good as it is today.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
57 Posts
Discussion Starter · #78 · (Edited)
Okay because I would've just reused the old springs not knowing that thanks. What do you think of the seal doctor equivalent of the seal mate? I would try those before opening the forks. I think I'm going to order one or both today.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
57 Posts
Discussion Starter · #80 · (Edited)
Fork seal oil destroys brake pads, just so you know. It's not hard to take out fork seals. Well worth it. Much better than gragging a handful of brake and not stopping. :)
Okay I'm going to try one of those seal cleaner tools first. Some people who used the product said it stopped massive seal leaks which I find hard to believe but I'll try it since it's cheap. Usually you get what you pay for though. Maybe this will be the first set of forks I tackle. I dread having something like that happen. I'm sure some of the fork oil got to the pads. I just bought two kind of seal cleaner/scrapers. I have other bikes to try it on too. We'll see if it helps. It just sucks because I went out to do that wire and it was like the forks bled out 😆
 
61 - 80 of 118 Posts
Top