thanks for the visit.
Good to meet another Triple Fan. :-)
If you are here, you are probably looking for info on Kawasaki triples. I hope I can help. I specialize in MACH III 500's, H1 500's, KH500's and H2 750's.
Having been at this (triples) since I bought my first New H1 500 (H1D 1973), I've figured out quite a lot of the problems they have, and improvements/upgrades they need.
as an FYI; I roadraced that H1 in every class, from 500cc Production, to 500 Grand Prix, for 4 years, at Riverside Intl Speedway, Ontario Motor Speedway, Willow Springs Intl Raceway, and Carlsbad Intl Raceway. I was always able to run at the front in the lower classes, and after MUCH modification, I put it on the Podium in 500 GP, at Ontario Motor Speedway.
Then, I raced a Blue 1972 H2 750, in 750 Production Class and 750 Superstreet (like today's 750 Super Sport classes), for an 18 race season. Never blew it up racing, and finished in the Top Ten in Class (7th overall, with 2 Podiums), against 8 year newer bikes.
One of the biggest problems today, with Kawasaki Triples, is they were designed for 98-102 Leaded Fuel.
Modern 91 Unleaded Fuel can create a hole in the piston dome in as little as 2-3 miles of 70-80 mph freeway riding, on a stock tuned Kawasaki Triple.
I can't emphasize more, the need to use a 100+ octane fuel. It doesn't need to be leaded like the old days, but it needs to be a quality race gas of that octane or better.
Next, is the fact they came with rubber oil seals on the crankshaft. Fine when they are new, but 35+ years out, they are hard, cracked and result in a poor running bike, if it runs at all.
Another problem is the transmission; although there were Service Bulletins to improve them, they were poorly shimmed, and resulted in sloppy stationary gear(s) movement, worn shift forks, and then, worn gears/rounded side dogs that popped out of engagement.
I correct those problems and a number of others. That's not a cheap proposition.
Nonetheless, Kawasaki triples are now one of the most collectable motorcycles of the 70's. As such, what you put into the project is still there in value.
I am a Wiseco Distributor, and am competitive with my prices.
I do know what I'm doing, and will build you an engine capable of a lot of hard miles, Track Days, or Production Roadracing (all the things I've done with mine). My Goal is to build you a Fast & Reliable, 2014 Kawasaki Triple.
Your engine (as long as nothing inside is broken), done right, will cost about 1/3 of what the bike is worth (if it is clean and good condition to begin with).
Most nice H2's these days, I put a value of $10-15K on. 500's, range from $15-20K for a perfect MACH III 500, to $5-8K for the later H1's & KH500.
Bottom line is, IMHO;
any triple, no matter the size, once opened, needs to be complete rebuilt.
I won't do it any other way.
Complete teardown and inspection.
Engine cases, cylinders and heads glass bead blasted (engines that have been painted Black, are much more time consuming, and expensive, to clean up).
Rebuilt crankshaft (with a more modern design than stock, Alloy Labrynth Seals inside). Unless you hurt/overev it, this type of crank won''t have to be rebuilt again (probably for as long as you ever own it). Unless you race it of course. Even then, it will have a long life.
If you plan on any type of competition, the main bearings can be upgraded for higher RPM's.
That 72 H2 I raced so many races on? It then went 4 more years & 40K mi. as my ONLY transportation. I finally sold it to get 4 Wheels :-(, and I'd paid my dues as a Motorcyclist, that's for sure.
I'd kept my H1, and started riding it again.
I've never been without a triple, since 1973.
In fact, I've owned over 50!!!!
Back to business; The transmission is inspected and if there are no worn gears, shift forks, etc, it is reshimmed as per the Factory Kawasaki Service Bulletins. I usually replace all of the transmission bearings as well.
If you expect to use your triple for any type of competition, the transmission gears can be Magnafluxed (so you know it is in good condition with no stress cracks), Undercut (on the upshift and/or both sides of the gear dogs), and reshimmed. This then allows for very positive engagement (like today's modern sportbikes have) and much reduced/if any shift fork wear.
Tranmission Oil; although they came with regular motor oil, it breaks down VERY quickly (1000 mi.) from gear "gnash"/gear grinding the oil polimers apart. So I use a real 2 stroke transmission oil. Pick any major brand; Spectro, Bel Ray, etc.
I also like Bel Ray's fully synthetic, "Si-7" injector 2 stroke oil. Very little smoke and good wear protection.
Clutch gets rebuilt with new fiber plates and new steel plates. Springs are replaced as needed for the application.
All New Oil Seals and Gaskets.
Clutch Release Mechanism; 1974-76 H1's & H2's came with the desireable (because it can take heavy springs without being excessively hard to pull the lever) Ball Bearing Clutch Release Mechanism (the early ones were a plastic worm gear).
The problem is it takes it's own oil seal (because the throw is deeper and will destroy the earlier oil seal), which is unavailable at last check.
FYI; I usually don't do jobs where you supply the parts, although I will make consideration(s) in some instances. You get the final say with all cost estimates.
The alternative release mechanism, is a Sy-Tec Billet, Worm Gear type, release mechanism, which can use the older worn gear style oil seal (that comes in most oil seal kits). It too is hard to find, since it had limited production runs.
I use Wiseco's because they are a stronger (Forged vs Cast) piston. The down side is they are a race piston with WAY too much compression (160-170psi) for the street. They require race gas of 102+ octane.
Stock pistons had/have a compression of 142psi, and were designed for 92-102 leaded.
FYI; we could use stock cast pistons/rings, but they list price for as much or more than the forged Wiseco's, if you can find them.
I can also provide pistons with aerospace coatings (Ceramic Domes and/or Moly Skirts).
To adjust for the higher compression Wiseco's, I start with extra thick head gaskets, and then, you can adjust the thickness depending on the resulting kicking compression, fuel being used and if it will be in competition.
The heads can also have the domes recut for dual squish bands. At this time. they are "squared up" (spark plug hole and head gasket surface are parallel) and cc'ed to be exactly the same.
The best answer is really to just step up and run a Race Gas of at least 102 Octane. Then you are feeding the beast what it was designed for.
I also run taps and dies over every threaded hole or stud, so the engine assembles smoothly and to the proper torque.
Here are a few problems to expect;
the shift forks are (almost) always worn (grooved on the sides where they contact the gears), usually more than you want to reuse. New forks are NOT available from Kawasaki. Start pounding the pavement (eBay, triple message board, etc) for 3 new (or very clean) forks for your bike.
NOTE; there are now H2 forks being reproduced. Although not cheap, at least they are now available again.
If your clutch basket is loose on the primary gear (at idle, you'll hear a rumble out of the lower end/clutch cover, that goes away/reduces when the clutch is pulled) , it needs to be replaced.
It is also NA.
Look for a solid basket, or competent machinist who can rerivet it (properly). It also may have severe "Chatter Marks", where the fiber clutch plate tabs rub on the basket's "ears". If light, you can file them smooth. But, too badly worn, and the basket is junk.
Cylinders; I always recommend a Stage I/Match Port job. At this point, you/we would have built one hell of a nice engine, better by far than it ever came new.
For "a few" dollars more, you get the power part of the engine corrected to what it was designed to, and a little bit more power than stock.
Nothing radical, since triples are kind of radical anyway.
The 1974/75 H2's (72/73 H2's were ported much more radically) are better as a street bike, since it has some bottom end torque. The early ones are all about top end power.
This should give you some idea of what is really needed to do your engine right, no matter who builds it.
In summary; "I" build a 2014 engine, not a 1970's motor. I'm not real interested in anything less than what I present to you.
So, if you want me to do your engine, I expect you to call some/all of the references I send you, to get an idea of who I am and how I work.
Money, I expect a good sized deposit (to start the work and get parts flying all over the country), another cash injection at about the 3-4 week mark (to pay for all the parts coming back and the work done so far) and the final $ when you pick it up/before I ship it out.
BE AWARE; If you want me to build your engine, you must have the money to do this job, and when I call for a cash injection, it happens when I need it. I unfortunately can't build your triple engine, on my money.
If you are in the West, I REALLY like it if you bring it here, so you see it come apart in front of your own eyes. Then there is no credibility problem of who I am, what work is being done or what is needed.
I have had guys from as far away as New York, Maryland, Ohio and Florida, ship engines to me for a rebuild, but I prefer to meet you, and you meet me.
Stage II H2 750 Engines; patterned after DENCO's 120hp "King Cobra", I taylor it to you and what you want to do with your H2. This package requires 34mm Mikuni's (Round or Flat Slides), adapters to mount the carbs on the cylinders, and expansion chambers. I do quite a bit more porting, and all the other work mentioned above.
OK, I'm done!! :-)
If that doesn't get your juices flowing, nothing will!!!!!
Hey, it's only money right? So what if your kids don't go to college, they need to earn their keep anyway!!! ;-)
Talk to you soon?
cheers and good luck