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1991 kawasaki zr550 , retro street fighter

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  • 1991 kawasaki zr550 , retro street fighter

    Hey guys , seeing as im all broken into pieces atm i now have the time to start sourcing the parts i need to start my project . was always going to be a project but since binning it i have to start a little sooner lol

    First things first , anyone on here who is experienced with these bikes ?

    I really hope to fit the larger motor to this frame , does the 900 fit ?

    can i fit a wider rear rim ? hoping that the z900 had a larger rim that would fit .

    I have plenty of ideas atm so am deciding on a plan of attack . Not sure if i want a retro streetfighter look or cafe racer .

    I am a welder/fabricator ( dont have access to a lathe though sadly ) . First mod will be to raise the rear to improve the stance , can modify the frame to suit , then drop the front .
    will lower the front headlight assembly . may custom make a set of stainless handle bars .
    Will build a flash custom exhaust system too , something that exits high up .

    will remove the foot peg assembly and custom make a set of adjustable rear sets for just the rider , no pillion .

    will reshape the seat into a single . rear body styling will stay as i love the lines but tank may get changed , depends what fits

    would love to extend the rear swing arm but thats a bit beyond what i can do at home .

    as i heal i will update and get some pics on here ^_^

    Last edited by kermit; 09-08-2010, 07:02 PM.

  • #2
    I have a couple of 550 zephers. I stuck a zzr 600 rear rim in the swinger and whilst it just fits, the axle is the same and some of the spacers can be used without any machining, you will encounter a couple of problems. You will have to cut off the chain guard mount on the inside of the swinger and you may have problems finding a sprocket small enough to suit the zzr wheel so it can travel faster than a tectonic plate. On the front end, the zzr 600 front wheel will slip straight in (also same axle size) but the brake calipers will be 5mm out on the fork mounts on either side. These can be machined down as theres heaps of meat or alternatively do a zzr front end swap forks an all...

    Hope that was some help, good luck with the build!


    • #3
      yeah mate thats awesome advice !!! the larger rear tyre will really set off the style that im after !!

      dont spose you have any spares for the z550 at all ?
      need a alternator cover , kinda smashed mine off

      Last edited by kermit; 22-07-2010, 01:29 PM. Reason: gay laptop


      • #4
        Originally posted by kermit View Post
        dont spose you have any spares for the z550 at all ?
        need a alternator cover , kinda smashed mine off

        Ill have a look, i think one of mine is cracked too..


        • #5
          ok i now have the use of one and a half hands so i figured that it was time to get stuck in .

          I initially had problems finding the parts that i needed ( timing cover ) and after being messed around by maddington motorcycle wreckers who have a bike to wreck the same as mine but refused to remove the parts that i need off of a complete bike .

          I dropped in to 2 wheel wreckers who were very helpful and had the parts that i needed at a very reasonable price plus were happy to spend some time with me offering advice on tyres etc plus have a wide array of used bars and mufflers etc that would suit my vision of my finished bike .

          My vision is kinda old school streetfighter ( kinda mad maxish ) . The main theme is to add attitude to the bike but i certainly do not want a pretty bike . although the tank and mudguard etc will be repainted and the wheels powdercoated i dont want a detailed motor . It will have a " rat " bike feel to it .

          List of things to do , drop bars
          drop front headlight
          source new indicators front and rear
          remove air box and install pods
          fabricate new hangers
          modify seat to suit a single
          fabricate a new rear end ( tail light holder , licence plate mount , indicator mount , fender eliminator etc)
          tank may end up being replaced
          new exhaust system fabricated
          headers to be wrapped

          any way , i started stripping the bike down today , removed the seat , rear body work , battery , smashed rear taillight assembly , airbox ( what a pain in the ass ) , tank , and headers .
          first problem is that i want to raise the rear of the bike , am planning to cut the rear subframe and raise it by 50mm , that way the rear body work will still fit but will give the extra attitude that i want . sadly the subframe is bent already and annoyingly not from my accident . seems a previous owner has binned it at some point ( not fearles5 ) so first job will be to straighten that back up then lift it to suit .

          pics to follow :-)



          • #6
            i like the sound of where this is going kermit. looking forward to watching the build. now get some pics up!


            • #7
              ok have been busy trying different looks for the bike . the cafe racer look doesnt suit at all so it look sto be the old school streetfighter look after all .

              spent the whole day trying different looks with the rear end after straightening out the subframe . after i straightened it out ( was over 25mm out ) i then raised it by approx 50mm . this looked better but still wasnt aggressive enough . i then cut the seat in half to try another style , regretted it instantly and spent the next 30 mins trying to put it back together again .

              after all the work redoing the sub frame i then decided to cut it off completely :o . has now been shortened by about 250mm and finally has the style that i was chasing . the rear end will end where the seat fininshes . i am now in the process of designing a rear end to suit the stock tail light , new small smoked indicators and a fender eliminator . i may build a clear perspex fender for when the popo get all emo at me .

              it looks as if i have scored an R1 exhaust system which should have a suitably over the top look which i am chasing . will exit high up , probably level with the top of the back of the seat .

              the stock rearsets will be modded for now until i have the stance which i want , need to know how i will feel on it before i go changing the position .

              will build new rear shock mounts tomorrow so i can raise the rear another 50mm to 80mm .

              i have shaved off all the untidy brackets which i wont be needing under the seat .

              am trying to find the best place to source 4 air filters to suit my carbs atm too . local autopro is no use sadly .
              Attached Files


              • #8
                few more pics .....^_^

                starting to really enjoy this now .
                Attached Files