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  • Hi! New to forum

    I just purchased a 2003 ZZR1200 kawasaki with only 4380 miles on it. I wouldn't believe these numbers, except that the bike is too clean in the areas where it shouldn't be to have more. It looks new, except for some parking bumps on the tank, and odd little knicks, expected from a bike this old. The guy was 6'4" who owned the bike. He had never ridden the bike. It scared the hell out of him, so he basically parked it, and finally asked a friend of it to sell it. The carbs were rebuilt, (not synched though). The bike starts right up, doesn't idle, but I will be syncing the carbs and getting to the minor problems soon. I paid only $2800 bucks for this bike. It came with this huge GIVI trunk, no saddle bags. I probably won't be using that unless I got the saddlebags, but even then, a tank bag is usually all I need. My other bikes are a 1975 CB400F I purchased new. That now has a Yoshima 458cc piston/ring kit, shot peened the Rods, plasti-guaged all the bearings, and Kazio bored out my stock carbs and flow benched them to a set of hand bent pipes he made for me (My brother in law knew him back in 1977). The '70's, what a great time. I still have my 2nd bike, a 1983 GS750ES Suzuki, 16 inch front wheel, and ride that most of the time. I worked for various dealers, and always had a dealer bike, so I didn't have to rack up many miles on my own bikes. My Suzuki has 40K miles on it, the CB400F has 8K miles on the Yoshima rebuild (and Stainless steel spokes, D.I.D. Gold anodized aluminum rims, and Koni aluminum body shocks.)

    The ZZR1200 is the apple in my eye now. I hope to have the bugs ironed out. The petcock flows fuel constantly, so I may have to replace or at least take it apart and see what's going on. It does not shut off. It has not pushed past and let gas into the oil, and those petcocks aren't cheap. I may have to spring for one. Lots of info here. Thanks for letting me in.

    I have a forum, but won't post it as I don't know if that violates the forum rules. I teach CAD through the building of paper models. My forum is completely free. Free is a good thing. ;)

  • #2
    Welcome aboard. The ZZR12 started life as parts bin bike, but the peices work together very well. It is not high tech by any means, it just gets the job done with a minimum of fuss. Fast, comfortable, and durable. I think you will like it. The biggest headache is getting the carbs to run correctly once they have lost their tune. But once you get it right it is quite a competent machine.

    Keep us up to date on your progress, we all like to see what works and what doesn't.

    Where do you ride, and what kind of riding do like to do? There is a fairly good mix of riding talent on the site, maybe you would like to join in one of the many rides that get put together t/o the year.


    • #3
      Originally posted by Kawasakian View Post

      The petcock flows fuel constantly, so I may have to replace or at least take it apart and see what's going on. It does not shut off. It has not pushed past and let gas into the oil, and those petcocks aren't cheap. I may have to spring for one.
      Have you had the tank off to see it flows even in the "off" position? I wouldn't have thought fuel would get past the fuel pumps when not running.

      Perth, Western Australia.
      “Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.” - Oscar Wilde


      • #4
        BillDownUnder, the previous owner told me had had problems on why a petcock would have 3 hoses. My Suzuki GS750ES has a vacuum operated side on the petcock to allow the fuel to flow only when there is vacuum. It has a prime position for "priming" the carbs. If you leave it in prime, and park it that way, the gas will push past the float bowls and fill up the engine with gasoline. I learned this the hard (dumbass) way. The ZZR runs with the fuel switch in the off position. I do not believe it can get past the fuel pumps when the bike is not running, there is no evidence of that happening in the way the oil feels, or smells. I am presently wrapping up a new clutch and tidying up my GS750ES, and will get to the ZZR next week. It's still on the trailer, covered, of course. I'll pop off the tank, and fairing pieces (it's the really Dark Blue color) and check out what's going on. I think some lines may be hooked up wrong. Those Petcocks are $100 bucks "ouch", so I'm hoping I can fix it.

        mehush, I live in Connecticut, the eastern edge, 300' from the New York border, on top of Danbury Ct. Some of the best riding roads in New England and New York around here, whether you like wide open ones, or ultra windy roads, we have them all here. I mostly like back road, lean way over riding. I like speed too, but on some of these roads 40 mph is very fast. I got the ZZR because the price and condition, and I did not want a fuel injected bike. I have all the gauges for tuning carbs, I'm hoping he didn't mess with the low idle mixture screws much. The carbs do sound out of sync. It doesn't idle, but starts right up. I plan to get rid of the huge exhausts and throw on a pair of the Radian short mufflers. That should knock 25 lbs off of the bike. I have Dog Bones on order to lower it a bit, and, if possible, slide down the forks a bit. I have to get a set of tires, I made a manual tire changing machine, and balance my bike tires myself. No problems or vibrations at 125 mph, so I guess that is good enough.

        Any tire recommendations would be appreciated. My Suzuki scuppers the front tires if the compound is too soft, 16" front wheel will do that, along with heavy braking. :)

        Any opinion of these, they sounded pretty good on the YouTube video? Link =


        • #5
          Those exhaust tips look like a complete muffler delete. Gonna be LOUD. Have you had a look at the Delkevic line of slipons? Good quality and price, with a lot of options.

          The bike is pretty picky about the front tire. It will shake its head if you put a tire on with one of the older style tread patterns. It does great with almost any of the new sport or sport-touring tires. It loves full-on sport tires but, chews 'em up pretty quick.

          My brother lives in Torrington and is the owner of two ZZR12's. He has not had much luck finding mature, sport oriented riding buddies in his area. You two should get together. He claims there is a shortage of good roads in the area. Maybe you could help him out, I know he mostly heads north into Mass to get to 'the good roads'.


          • #6
            I looked at those Delkevic slip on pipes. We have a different depth of pockets (ouch!!). The Radian pipes didn't seem to sound too loud, relatively inexpensive, I comparison tested on my audio system (I'm an audiophile), between the stock and Radian in the Radian Video, they had a different note. I imagine they are much louder, but the price, and weight loss would be worth it. I'm sure they are louder, but how they are tuned makes a big difference. I'm tempted to take the stock exhaust, and machine them down, Tig them back together, much shorter, and see what I come up with. It would be easy to make them able to be packed, got to see what's inside there. They sure are heavy!

            Torringoton is a little over an hour away from me. I never liked the roads in that area. If your brother rode on Rte.4 West till he hit Rte. 22, in New York, he would find the most fantastic roads he's ever seen, an hour ride. If he goes South on Rte. 22 where it intersects Rte.4, to Country Rd.199 West, another 5 miles, it will take him to Rhinebeck Aerodrome, 20 more miles), the oldest flying aircraft in America, and it's a great destination. Real bi-plane barnstorm shows on really old WW1 aircraft. Those roads are just superb!

            What tire would you recommend? I don't plan to ride this thing too hard yet, so I want something for semi-aggressive riding, that will hold up. I was looking at Continentals. Any suggestions would be most appreciated. :)


            • #7
              I decided these would be a good tire to start with. The price is right. I've always had look with Continental tires. The Dog Bones I ordered are coming in in 5 days, that will be the perfect time to order the tires, while I have the dog bones in hand, try and time it so I have everything at once.

              Continental Sport Attack Tire Combo $196 for the pair! :)

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              Last edited by Kawasakian; 06-06-2021, 01:53 AM.


              • #8
                Welcome aboard and congratulations on the bike ????

                For tires I’d recommend Bridgestone T-31 GTs

                I think they are phasing them out in favor of the T-32 but get the GT version for the heavier bike.

                I need to get a set soon and T32 GT is what I’ll get.

                Again, welcome

                While I am master of my sword, I shall never think any man greater than myself.
                ~Eumenes of Cardia

                I'd rather wake up in the middle of nowhere than in any city on earth. ~Steve McQueen

                I work over by worlds of fun. ~JimmyMac

                My photo album -


                • #9
                  Welcome and congratulations! That's quite a deal on an insanely low-mileage bike!

                  Hope you're able to get it sorted asap


                  • #10
                    Thank you Lil_Silver_Rocket !!! I ended up ordering the Pirelli Diablo Rosso 2 Front/Rear Tire combo deal. The cost was fair, $286, including shipping, .which was FREE. with valve stems. I ordered them from I should have them in 5 days. They said all Continentals are on back order.. These should be better than what's on there, as these may be the original tires, and are very old. I like that these do not have a center rib, as those tend to capture the groves on the road. Time will tell. The reviews say these tires shed water well in the rain. I don't usually ride in the rain, but who hasn't got caught in it. They are rated to 168 MPH, not that I ever intend to try that speed, I'd run out of state. :)

                    Pirelli Diablo Rosso 2.jpg
                    Last edited by Kawasakian; 06-07-2021, 09:30 PM.


                    • #11
                      New tires are always a treat!

                      "I tried being reasonable, I didn't like it!"


                      • #12
                        Congrats! Sounds like a killer deal. I got my 03 ZZR12 in 2015 with 4800 miles. Rode it, ran like crap untill 5k or so, then took off. Bought a Factory jet kit, and a rebuild kit (all new gaskets, o-rings) and cleaned out the carbs. Put it all together, a little tuning, and she runs great. It's got almost 42k on the clock now. I'm also close to Danbury. Do a lot of local riding, and in NY. Speed limits are better in NY. 55mph on most 2 lanes. Let us know how those tires work. I'm running Road 5's now. I love 'em. A heads up, though. I ride pretty hard into corners, and front tires wear fast. You might find that soft front gets chewed up fast on this heavy machine. Or maybe it's just me.


                        • #13
                          My Suzuki eats up front tires like crazy. It's only 16 inches in diameter though. The Avon tires I have seem to be holding pretty well. Limited tires available for the 16" front end bikes. I like to take Rte.22 North, the go up the hill at the junction of Rte.311 (just before) on the right hand side, which is Quaker hill road. There's a stretch of road on the top of the mountain that is 8 miles long and there are no stop signs and hardly ever any cars. It hasn't changed in 35 years., The other route is further up Rte. 22, take Rte.55, and instead of going back into Connecticut, go straight till you hit Rte 4, and take that to Rte.7. That's about an 85 mile ride, a nice loop. I have most of the parts I need. The carbs were rebuilt, I even have the receipt, but I don't think the synced them up. I have the gauges for that. It starts and revs, but is off balance and doesn't want to idle. Everything is taken off #3 carb, so it shouldn't be too difficult to finally dial it in. Thanks for the post. When I get on the road, maybe we can hook up and go for a ride. Definitely something going on with the petcock, as it never shuts off the gas. I have purchased the vacuum operated fuel stop that hooks up to the 2 fuel pumps and vacuum tube. The previous owner said he rebuilt the petcock but had problems with it. The one available to use the knob is over $100 bucks, though you could stick anything in there. I don't want a gaping hole though. These tires are dual compound, lots of silica when you're straight up, and sticky when you lay over. That transition might take some getting used too, as will be throwing this much heavier bike around. Thanks for the comments. ;)


                          • #14
                            You'll never feel the dual compound. The Road 5's are dual compound. You can see it in the tread, but never feel it. I am a bit confused about your petcock. There is only 1 hose on the petcock on this bike. New one isn't cheap, but probably worth it. If you have the original one and it doesn't shut fuel off, you may be able to buy just the o rings and rebuild it.
                            Edit: you say "everthing is taken off the #3 carb". Are you talking about the vacuum for the emissions crap that hooks up to the valve cover? I have that removed and blocked, so all vacuum nipples are capped. Make sure you don't have a vacuum leak. That will kill your idle, and running for sure. I've never seen a bike so far out of sync thst it wouldn't idle.
                            Last edited by rexracer; 06-11-2021, 05:24 AM.


                            • #15
                              There is a shut off valve on the fuel tank, that's pretty straight forward. There is another vacuum operated assembly with inputs from the fuel tank, vacuum hose, and two outputs for the fuel pumps. With vacuum on, fuel will not flow, I tested it. This means that if the fuel petcock is left on, the gas can't get past the fuel pumps. As far as "Off of carb #3", I meant that #3 is the carb that the other carbs, according to the factory manual, all adjustments are synced. I'll see when I get there. Presently I am finishing the roof on my house. The Pirelli's just came in, they really look great. I'll have to check the emissions stuff, didn't even know about that, thanks for the "heads up" on that.. If it can be removed without consequence, I will remove it. Emissions of motorcycles aren't checked in Connecticut.
                              Last edited by Kawasakian; 06-14-2021, 08:17 AM.