Turning a classic inline-four Japanese motorcycle into a modern custom doesn’t sound like the easiest task, but the results can be truly satisfying. Just take a look at this 1976 Kawasaki Z900 that Spanish custom builder La Perra Bikes recently finished.
At its base, the bike remains the same, so the low bars and black wire wheels, Ohlins inverted forks, Brembo radial brake calipers as well as the wavy Galfer brake rotors help bring it back through the living. Once there, the chopped exhaust should make sure everyone hears it roar.
All in all, this looks like a short way from classic to custom, but it is the black and gold combination that really makes a striking difference.
The Z2/750RS was one of Kawasaki’s highly appreciated inline-four nakeds and made the subject of many customization projects over the years and, as we have recently come to find, it can still work its magic. Modified by the Kouga branch of the Sanctuary workshop, this precise exemplar apparently retains most of its original features, but it is brought up to date especially in what the chassis is concerned.
Now built around a powdercoated and reinforced frame and featuring Yamaha XJR1200 suspension as well as Brembo brakes, the upgraded Kawi Z2 should handle much better and come to a hault almost instantaneously. Also, thanks to the Yoshimura-tuned Mikuni TMR-MJN38 carburetion and Nitro Racing exhaust with titanium silencers, the blueprinted and balanced engine that originally developed 69bhp at 9000rpm now responds better to acceleration and sounds racy.
Overall, this is a clean looking bike which, despite having a few good years on its back, only needed a quick upgrade in order to keep up with its modern siblings from most points of view. That’s why we love Japanese bikes so much.
The 2010 Kawasaki Z1000 is already one of the best Japanese nakeds around, but ways to make it better are always found either by riders individually or by tuners. These lasts have the habit of developing entire upgrade kits that set the bike miles away from its original state of new product that has just come out the factory gates.
Take the 2010 Roaring Toyz Kawasaki Z1000 case for example. The bike gets a set of Performance Machine wheels (17-inch front, 18-inch rear), 240-section rear tire, a custom-built braced swingarm and Brocks 4-2-1 exhaust, just to mention some of its most impressive new features.
The gold/silver paintjob does help at setting the bike apart from its standard siblings, but what we like the most about this project is the fact that it looks like that’s just the way Kawi did it in the first place. This is really one of those bikes that people see and ask “what is stock and what is aftermarket about it?” Click past the break to find out.
They say you need to be a certain kind of biker in order to ride a trike and it is not hard to recognize the type as the biking crowd passes along, so hearing about a guy having turned a 2001 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-12R into a trike raises a few question marks regarding to what kind of rider would do that and why. A very special kind of rider let me tell you and also one who wants to have fun and feel a little safer on two wheels.
Simeon Hill is a brit who’s 155mph Kawi trike featuring a custom-built frame, a push-button gearshift system, Akrapovic exhaust, modified axle and differential from a Ford Sierra made it to Trike magazine. Sure, the 17-inch rear wheels with 235 x 50 tires also had much to do with the achievement, but mostly with what our man built it for. So let’s see what Hill has to say: ‘I built this trike to handle. I have turned a few heads and surprised many sportsbike riders on twisty Yorkshire and Lincolnshire roads. It’s taken me on local jaunts, weekend trips and longer trips around Europe, not only keeping up with my friends’ sportsbikes but also giving them a good run for their money.’
While Kawasaki discontinued their 1990s Zephyr 1100, the bike remains popular among those with an affinity for large-displacement nakeds and it even got a 2010 makeover from the Japanese tuner Moriwaki. The bike looks gorgeous with the dark blue/yellow color scheme, but this is one of those cases when the “more than meets the eye” part is what really makes all the difference.
This thing is powered by a big bore 1258cc inline-four engine breathing out through a hand made exhaust system and developing a decent 110bhp. While bringing in a new clutch and suspension, Moriwaki also fitted their latest idea for a Kawi Zephyr with a computer designed, aluminum alloy swingarm in order to stiffen up the rear end as well as make possible the use of a 180 section rear wheel and tire.
Is it just us or this is the best looking Kawasaki Zephyr around?
Apart from providing motorcycle gear for speed junkies, Icon also like to get their hands dirty from time to time while customizing, obviously, Japanese motorcycles. One of their latest creations is actually called the Kawazuki, originally a 1979 Kawasaki KZ1000 with an ordinary destiny, but which ended up with a modified frame (mounts for rearsets included), a Suzuki SV1000 monoshock and front end as well as with a ’92 GSX-R750 swingarm and rear wheel.
The original engine was fitted with a 1075cc Wiseco big bore kit so that this classic would keep up with modern bikes, but it is a pleasure just to look at it.
Turning a veritable roadster such as the Kawasaki W650 into a unique hardtail chopper can prove very challenging as builders must sacrifice comfort for style and it is this precise case that we’re witnessing here with the Deus Sacred Cow bobber.
We happen to like this Deus Ex Machina creation very much and we have come to find that it was built according to the strict requirements of New York motorcyclist and motorcycle design company owner Billy Joel, who has considered a hardtail frame kit, 21" front wheel, spring-mounted saddle, handmade tank and cleaned up looks as being the most appropriate means of transformation.
Because good looks must always be backed by engine performance, this custom bike’s parallel-twin gets a 720cc big bore kit. Also considering the weight loss, the Deus Sacred Cow bobber should be significantly zippier than the stock bike. This is what the happy Brooklyn customer eagerly waits to find out as the bike is on its way towards him as we speak. Meanwhile, Billy Joel has given an interview to Hell for Leather Magazine, so read it here to find out more about his passion for motorcycles and about what he plans to do with his latest ride.
While children imagine Santa Claus delivering presents with a sleigh powered by reindeers, bikers more likely agree with this image right here. Yes, Christmas Eve may not be the best time to ride the 280bhp Asphaltfighters Stormbringers, but when you have a bag full of aftermarket motorcycle parts you need all the four-cylinder power and plenty of will in order to get the job done. Good luck motorcycle Santa!
The Gpz 1100 was one of Kawasaki’s first sport-touring motorcycles, but there’s little left of this particular unit after ending up in the hands of custom motorcycle builder WrenchMonkees. Turned into a naked powered by now a 125 hp Gpz engine upgraded with an 1170cc Wiseco piston kit and featuring more tweaks than you would imagine, this might very well reflect how things get done in Denmark.
With sports wheels and suspensions, this roadster should know how to bring riders the most benefits from that powerful Japanese inline-four engine, so in the end it is all a matter of style, which is quite unique, especially if we look at the backend. This is contoured by the WM rearframe and characterized by a flat seat and custom back fender as well as by the LED taillight. Up front, there’s also a WM fender, while the fork wraps make it look like one of those Mad Max bikes. In between, there’s a stylish Zephyr fuel tank and a very enthusiastic rider. Please read the specs after the break.
Copenhagen-based custom motorcycle builder WrenchMonkees brings Japanese power to the world of café racers with their Monkee number 2. Although it started life as a Kawasaki Z1000 A, there’s little left of the original bike, not even the engine. This was replaced with that of a Z1000 J model, which was upgraded to around 110-115 hp by fitting a 1075cc Wiseco piston kit.
The café racer image was achieved with the use of a Norton fuel tank and a Ducati Monster headlight while the rest of the body parts, but also the mufflers, LED rear light and even the custom paint wear the WM fingerprint.
We can’t help but think about the uncomfortable riding position, read the specs again and appreciate the fact that it has a big engine as well as a retro look until finally reaching to the conclusion that this may very well be something that our favorite Hollywood star would ride to the studios everyday.
WrenchMonkees clearly has a passion for bringing old classic roadsters back to a new kind of glory by using a few tricks that they have in their sleeves. For instance, this Kawasaki Z1000 A now benefits of 105 hp as a result of installing a 1075cc Wiseco piston kit to the original motor, which is now fed by Z1000 J carburetors and filters air using K&N pieces.
The Copenhagen-based custom builder has the tendency to turn every bike into a café racer and this one looks, sounds and we reckon it performs as one too. Most likely, the sports bike front suspension and custom rear shocks also bring a major contribution to what looks to be a very angry piece of machinery.
Stylistically, the WM fingerprint is left by the all-new tail and seat as well as by the custom paintjob. Ride this bike like you stole it and people will believe you actually did simply because they would have probably done the same thing if they were you.
It seems the Kawasaki Z 750 B is a great bike to work on for Copenhagen-based custom builder WrenchMonkees as this is not the first time we write about their creations based on this particular Japanese bike. In this case, they choose bobber-like wheels as a first step in turning classic into custom while the unique rear frame and seat leave the unmistakable WM signature.
The original engine was kept, but it is now restored and covered in black heat resistant paint. It develops approximately 50 hp and breaths through K&N filters and WM megatron mufflers, this time not covered in exhaust heat wrap.
Clearly, style beats performance on this custom motorcycle and the final touch is given by the in-house rear fender and clean custom paint. Those small head and tail lights are supposed to make the wheels look even fatter and the thing is that this is one of those bikes that you rediscover each and every time you look at it. Specs are attached after the break.
Turning a 1980s Kawasaki Z 1000 J into a café racer doesn’t sound like the easiest task for custom bike builders and while you’ll normally get only visual changes, in this case we’re talking about a whole different bike. Forget about the classic roadster look of the Kawi Z 1000 J, which came as a response to Honda’s CB900, and let yourself be introduced to this low, aggressive and most likely pretty uncomfortable ride signed by WrenchMonkees.
First and foremost, the original 998cc air-cooled, four-stroke, transverse four-cylinder, DOHC with two valves per cylinder engine now displaces 1170cc thanks to a Wiseco piston kit, which raises the standard engine’s 102 hp to an impressive 140 hp. So that’s what the aggressive looks and Brembo brakes are there to cope with.
No doubt about it, this is a ride meant to stand out. It rolls on 17-inch Excel wheels, features custom paint and a whole bunch of WM components among which the fairing, aluminum tank, seat and tailunit are the most important. For more details, read the specs after the break.
Although Kawasaki never designed the Versys to be a naked, but a middleweight sport-touring motorcycle, WrenchMonkees have come up with their own approach towards the original Japanese idea. They got rid of the strange looking headlight and half fairing then brought not only their own headlight and headlight brackets, but also a new front fender, Rizoma handlebar and clamps as well as front and rear turn signals. Further enhancing the bike’s now much sportier nature is the WM seat, while the custom paint and exhaust heat wrap make this a veritable midnight naked, if you accept the term.
It seems that Marco Melandri itself advised German builder Hoely to develop this MotoGP kit for the Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R as the racing bike’s rider believes the original bike can easily be turned into a MotoGP replica for the road by customers who had enough of the standard color schemes and graphics.
We have to admit that the Italian MotoGP rider thought well and the Germans were clever in following his ideas because bikes are pretty much like cars: you buy them new, drive/ride them for a couple of months and already start thinking at ways to make them better. And what better way to improve a stock Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R than making it look like its racing sibling?
The WrenchMonkees team gave a unique touch to this late 1970s Kawasaki Z 750 B not just by rebuilding the engine and adding their very own megatron mufflers, but by turning classic into custom using what we begin to consider the WM routine. This implies a new rearframe and fender which help at giving each of their bikes a unique look, while the aluminum battery box helps at meeting the customer’s requirements.
Good looks are part of just a point met on the Copenhagen-based builder’s check list. Because comfort is another one, this bike gets WM seat, footpegs and also handlebar and grips. The riding position looks quite natural and the bike is overall exclusive in its simplicity. You won’t find any wires hanging on for dear life on their way to the WM headlight and taillight and we have to appreciate that, just as we cannot complain about the WM heat resistant custom paint. This, together with the 19-inch cast alloy wheels, makes a Kawasaki Z750 B look like something that Brad Pitt would ride.