1997 Kawasaki ZX-6R

A fi­nal fet­tle be­fore the big farewell

Practical Sportsbikes (UK) - - News -

O THE ZX-6R is for sale. It’s been on ebay a cou­ple of weeks al­ready and like a fish­er­man sat lakeside I’ve had a cou­ple of bites, but haven’t landed a seller just yet.

My plight isn’t helped by the chilly time of year. Early win­ter isn’t ex­actly the ideal time to sell a sports­bike, es­pe­cially as it’s prob­a­bly go­ing to spend the re­main­der of the dark months parked up in its new owner’s garage. No mat­ter – I’m still hope­ful be­cause I need the dough to fi­nance my own win­ter wheels: a trailie.

I must con­fess that I’ve only used the ZX oc­ca­sion­ally dur­ing the last few months, as I’ve been us­ing test bikes and try­ing to keep the Kawasaki clean. In that time, how­ever, the carbs have gone out of bal­ance and suf­fered the ill ef­fects of stale fuel and de­bris from the bot­tom of the tank.

The re­sult of all this be­came ob­vi­ous when I took the bike for a clear-out last week. There was a splut­ter­ing power de­liv­ery in the lower reaches of the rev

Srange. I wouldn’t want to buy a bike run­ning in such a poor fash­ion, so I’m not about to sell one like it ei­ther. Cylin­ders one and two weren’t reach­ing temp like their op­po­site num­bers, sug­gest­ing the is­sue to be in their cor­re­spond­ing carbs. The bike pulls strongly and cleanly once on the main jet (6500rpm-on) so the fin­ger of blame is point­ing at blocked pi­lot jets.

With the carbs off there are no ob­vi­ous signs of dirt ingress, but even the tini­est specs of filth can wreak havoc in small jets. To make sure, the del­i­cate work­ings of the Kei­hin bank are go­ing to do a stint in The Mo­tor­cy­cle Works ul­tra­sonic cleaner (thanks Pete).

To make dou­bly sure, I’ve bought a fresh set of gen­uine nee­dle valves. The O-rings on the ones that I re­moved look to be past their best, so fitting new is cer­tainly not go­ing to hurt.

So if you’re in the mar­ket for a sweet-run­ning ZX-6R, drop me a line.


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