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Old 03-04-2014, 11:24 AM   #1
garrick
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1979 Kawasaki KZ650

Good morning all. I am new to the site. I recently acquired a near new 1979 Kawasaki KZ650. The bike has 4100 original miles on it. She was a real "barn find" that still has the original tires, manuals and tool kit. I have the bike with a friend right now having it gone through to make sure it is still mechanically sound. All reports so far are great news. My problem is that it is purple...I intended on turning it into a cafe racer...now I am getting comments from practically everybody that I should just restore the bike. Any ideas/advice?Click image for larger version

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Old 03-04-2014, 11:31 AM   #2
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Wow. That complete and in that good of condition. I wouldn't chop it up for a café racer.

I have a gs500 that you can turn into a café racer instead. Don't butcher that gem.
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Old 03-04-2014, 11:37 AM   #3
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Nice bike! My only argument against restoring it is you'll never get back what you put in as far as the short term. It's not like these are/were rare bikes, so do what you want with it.

If you do decide to go custom, maybe try to trade your mint body parts for stuff that needs refinishing anyway.
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Old 03-04-2014, 11:41 AM   #4
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Build the out of it! It's only cool in stock form to a collector, the rest of us like to see what sort of creativity the owner can come up with.
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Old 03-04-2014, 11:52 AM   #5
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chop chop and leave the original paint
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Old 03-04-2014, 02:30 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jetcycles View Post
Build the out of it! It's only cool in stock form to a collector, the rest of us like to see what sort of creativity the owner can come up with.
Welcome to MotoHouston!
build it anyway you want, its not a collectable bike, or rather it wont bring a ton of money when its restored, so make it what its supposed to be used for, build it like you like it, then ride it and enjoy it.
I can help you with the color of the tins etc etc
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Old 03-04-2014, 02:33 PM   #7
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Nice find!!! And welcome to MH!

Post up a build thread in the vintage area, like the rest of us!
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Old 03-04-2014, 02:45 PM   #8
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KZ650

Nice bike. I would restore it, but that is your choice. I have had an '82 KZ650 for over 7 years. Put 28,000 miles on it. Use it for a daily driver. Rode it to California and back - no problems.

The guys over at www.kzrider.com are very helpful. Good luck. PM me if I can help in any way.
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Old 03-04-2014, 05:21 PM   #9
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Nice bike, I would definitely go with the cafe racer route. You will spend endless amounts of time trying to find parts.....nightmare, plus you won't get out what you put in if you ever decide to sell.
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Old 03-04-2014, 06:17 PM   #10
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It's a toaster. An appliance. Make yourself happy.
If it would make you happy to leave it more or less, as is and just ride it.
Do that.
If it would make you happy to restore back to perfect,original condition.
Do that.
If it would make you happy to chop it up and make a cafe/rat bike/Street tracker.
Do that.
It won't make any difference.
If you had a barn find Vincent Black Shadow or Brough Superior then I'd say different. But a '70s bike?
Nah. Do as you will and enjoy it.
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Old 03-04-2014, 08:56 PM   #11
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excellent point...well said. really leaning towards café...
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Old 03-04-2014, 09:56 PM   #12
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Quote:
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excellent point...well said. really leaning towards café...
I should add, its a very nice toaster so whatever you do, imho, do it with thought and appreciation for what a nice starting point you have.
It would bea shame to see it get hacked up and not finished, for example.
Good luck, and if you do a build start a thread and let us watch
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Old 03-05-2014, 03:14 PM   #13
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i dont understands everyones fascination with cafe racers
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Old 03-06-2014, 08:10 AM   #14
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Quote:
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i dont understands everyones fascination with cafe racers
It's the same as the fascination with 22 inch rims on a monte carlo or with gold teeth or with stretched swing arms on a sportbike.
Different social subgroups have different things that are accepted as cool or desirable. For some of us the retro look of cafe racers is what we like.
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Old 03-06-2014, 08:19 AM   #15
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Quote:
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i dont understands everyones fascination with cafe racers

You don't have to understand, it's not your bike to worry about. That's what makes this place so much fun, different strokes for different folks. I'm glad this place is starting to see more and more variety...
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