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stuff I'd like to fix

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  • stuff I'd like to fix

    Hey all, since I've been riding my new ZZR now pretty regularly I have noticed a few things I would like to address. At low RPM (3000 or less), especially during startup there seems to be a sort of rattling coming from the top end. It's not super loud and doesnt sound like imminent explosion will ensue or anything, but its loud enough to warrant investigation. When I rev it over 3k and am riding its completely gone and the engine whirrs along extremely smoothly, but at idle at a stop light or something I can hear it ticking away. is this a common trait on these bikes? is it due to lower oil pressure allowing me ot hear the valvetrain? or is it just indicating I need to adjust my valves or cam chain tensioner?

    secondly, when riding at speed there seems to be a sort of uncomfortable sharp bumpiness to the front suspenders. I dont know if this would be due to too much preload or rebound damping being too tight. '02s cant adjust rebound damping right? are there progressive springs for the early forks? do they work?

    Lastly, I rode at night the other day and I have essentially zero dashboard lights working. I cant see my speed or RPM or anything else. are there replacement bulbs I can get to fix this or do I need a new dashboard or something?

    Other than these things my old girl is fantastic. I am getting better than 6.0 L/100km if I take it easy, and better than 7 if I'm being aggressive. The riding position with my corbin and clip on risers is fantastic, I dont need earplugs while riding, my headlights are stellar, shifting is a pleasure...this is a really nice biike for the money!!!!

  • #2
    the bulbs for your dash come from the dealer or internet
    did you chase down the wiring for a blown fuse
    front end sounds right

    sounds like you need a factory manual
    ..I have one for $35


    • #3
      1. The rattling your hearing is almost for sure the Alternator tensioner. They are prone to going out.. if you take off the oil fill cap you can see the outer part of the clutch basket. it will likely have a lot of metal marks and scratches that will not look normal. you ca replace the actual Tensioner... but there is a guy that was banned from this site that sells a custom tensioner. Here is link to part,

      2. The shocks.. I would either find some 04/05' ZZR forks with the rebound adjustment.. and or have your forks rebuilt.. get a seal kit and go with 7wt oil over the stock 5wt.. I am sure yours are a mess if they have not be rebuilt yet.. its an old bike.

      3. Their are bulbs on the back of the gauge cluster.. its not that easy to get out. you need a small or curved 8mm wrench to get it out and access the bulbs.. I put in LED's when I got mine out. never lay it flat once its out. much easier to do if you loosen the front fairing.

      4. I highly recommend you have your carbs rebuilt.. There is a guy at wheelsmith racing in San Rafael California that does a amazing job for about $300 US.. changes the bike..


      • #4
        Originally posted by 9am53 View Post
        is it due to lower oil pressure allowing me ot hear the valvetrain? or is it just indicating I need to adjust my valves or cam chain tensioner?
        Valves are solid not hydraulic, no oil pressure needed. Cam chain tensioner spring/ratchet type no oil pressure needed. Old saying is "noisy valves are happy valves" When valves
        become out of spec the tighten and become quite. If anything as jmenon mentioned it's probably the alternator tensioner. Kwicks is a good kit,

        What have you done to the forks? When was last time serviced? What weight oil was used? What fill height was used? Whats your preload currently set at?
        Where you able to set the sag?

        They're not the most sophisticated forks, but making some adjustments in oil weight, fill height and preload should be able to get
        them to work good enough.

        I bought a used gauge cluster from a wrecked zzr just for the bulbs since KHI wanted I think like $6 each and pulled out all the bulbs
        when I needed to change mine. I still have a little bag of them, not sure how many, but I'd be happy to send them to you.

        I also have the 2 shoulder bolts and spring for the center stand I can send you to.

        Just let me know and I'll mail them to you.

        Our ability to distribute interesting information is out pacing our ability to create it.


        • #5
          here is a link to download the factory manual!AhtQtKz1D9C2kgDoTJxX3ZdFEoqG password is: zzrbikes19


          • #6
            Wow, thanks guys!

            I have a manual, thanks. The forks were redone "apparently" 3 years ago by a garage in town. I have no idea about anything else. The seals are fine so I took him at his word. havent looked at preload or sag yet. I have risers on the tops of the forks so I cant easily see the adjuster. I just know it feels like something is knocking around as I ride along. everything seems tight so I assume its the forks.

            I knew these are shim over bucket valvetrains, but i thought maybe at low rpm there isnt enough oil getting up there and its allowing the noise to transfer more? I know the cam chain tensioner is ratchet type, but back on my old KZ's everybody replaced them with manually adjustable ones for a number of reasons including them not adjusting properly, wasnt sure if the CCT on the ZZR was any better than the older ones or if I needed to replace it.

            I doubt its a fuse issue with the dash lights as I have one light lights up the speedo in the area above 250 km/h lol

            I'll look into servicing the froks this winter maybe.


            • #7
              "Something knocking."

              Any play in the steering head area? New bearings needed perhaps?
              I suffer from kleptomania. When it gets bad, I take something for it.


              • #8
                I found the parts including 7 bulbs. I'll try to get in the mail tomorrow, gratis.

                Need to pull the risers off and see where the preload is set. Almost sounds like you could be topping out the forks?
                If that's possible on the zed?

                Can you push down on the front end and work the forks comfortably? Setting the sag will let you know more
                of what's going on.

                Damping can be changed some with oil weight. Fill height can help you use full stroke and slow down bottoming of forks.

                I believe through several oil changes I ended up with Motul 10w fork oil and 3/4" over fill.

                Also as bill mentioned when you have the front end off the ground you can check for head bearing play too is a good idea.
                Can't really tell unless you get the front end off the ground.


                Our ability to distribute interesting information is out pacing our ability to create it.


                • #9
                  Thank you so much!

                  honestly now that you guys have mentioned it worn bearings in the steering stem sounds like it would have the symptoms I'm describing to a last bike (ninja 900r) I swapped the front end for a 2001 R6 front end and I replaced the I'm going from a really nice front end with brand new stem bearings to this...maybe thats the issue after all! Once I get that centre stand on I'll check it out. I am 350 pounds so I guess I am pushing the forks a bit harder than most people but I doubt I'm bottoming them out. Again I will check this out.
                  Thanks for your generosity and help. I'll pay it forward when I get a chance.


                  • #10
                    Glad you are getting your issues sorted.

                    Lots of great people with a wealth of information on this site
                    I have neither the time,or the inclination, to explain myself to a man, who rises and sleep under the blanket of the very freedom that I provide, and then questions the manner, in which I provide it. I'd rather you just say 'thank you' and go on your way.