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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hi Everyone! Just joining up here.

After being out of motorcycling several years I got back into it a couple years ago. I used to be a motorcycle safety instructor - really learned how to master a bike. But the only bikes I ever owned were a 450 Nighthawk and a 1200 Goldwing. Nice, but boring.

So when I decided to get back into it I knew I wanted a kick-ass sportbike. I was on Kijiji heavy and one day, voila! I saw the bike I just knew I had to have.

It really stood out - an orange ZX-9R, but not the Kawasaki orange. The seller told me the truth right up front - he bought it as an insurance write-off and rebuilt it. It was basically just cracked up fairings and broken little things like pedals and levers. He did a great job fixing it up. Decided to paint over the Kawi green with a nice orange (Audi or Ford, I think).

It easily passed the mandatory mechanical inspection required after being registered as a write-off and I got all the registration done with no problem.

This bike really stands out. I often get people asking me about it and complimenting the colour. I'm phasing out some of the odd colours to bring everything except the fairings to be either gloss black or the natural brushed metal silver of the frame. Brake levers - replaced with black ones. That kind of stuff.

First thing I did was change the ugly, faded, scratched windscreen with a 'sport touring' version from Zero Gravity. Then it was time for a good maintenance: new chain (factory 1-piece/endless), sprockets, brake pads, etc. I use OEM parts always unless there's something BETTER aftermarket (ie: brake pads & levers).

One front brake rotor is a bit warped due to the wheel being laid down on it's side once. I sourced out some pretty nice new rotors from China that look identical to Galfers but about 1/3 the price. They are gloss black in the centres instead of the factory gold. "Gold?" Serously, Kawi! What were you thinking when you put GOLD brake rotors on bikes that were all green, silver, and black? I've noticed the front brakes dragging a bit, so I'm going to rebuild the calipers (caliper kit on its way here) before I put the new, full thickness rotors on. But when those beautiful gloss black rotors are on, it's going to look stunning!

I also have a smoke tail light, but am in the process of sourcing out some rear LED signals before I convert to all-LED (got the new L.P. factory look mirrors with LED signals built in, and the flush mount fairing signals coming any day now).

I just want to say the bike is pure Kawasaki Ninja! When you start it up, it sounds like shit - like putting a 1 gallon can half full of marbles in a paint shaker - but I hear over and over that's just the way these things are. But when she's warmed up and you roll the throttle... zzzooooomm! Geez it's fast!

Looking on the web the stats for this year of bike have 0 - 60 mph in 2.9 seconds. That's incredibly fast! Faster than Hayabusa (well, to 60, but the Busa would probably stomp on my Ninja at that point).

The bike is built like brick shit-house and never gives me trouble.

The best thing about the bike is that I paid just $2800 for it! The first week I had it I wound up beside a new Lamborghini Diablo. It was a nice feeling to know that I could easily dust it if I wanted to - at about 1/100th the cost of his car! Ha!

I'm now into it for about $4000 and I'm fine with that. Around here, good condition sportbike prices generally bottom out around $4K, so I could probably sell it for what I've got into it.

What do I NOT like about Kawasaki? Mainly the parts prices and dealers. In Canada, the Kawasaki importer arbitrarily marks up all parts a flat 100%, thus DOUBLING the cost to all the dealers in Canada. Consequently, the Kawi dealers stock almost nothing at all for parts, and zero zero zero for OEM accessories. In fact, the importer gouges them so bad they wonder why they even bother with the line at all. It's probably just because there is a market of die-hard Ninja nuts out there that will pay whatever it takes to own one of these. But if you need parts you're far better off to go online and buy them from a U.S. dealer and have them shipped up here. Example: OEM Kawi chain at local dealer: $572. Same thing from Kawi dealer in U.S. and shipped up here: $294 (exactly half, plus shipping). And don't even get me started with the $11 well nuts I can pick up at a Suzuki dealer for $1.75!

But, good thing the Kawi rarely needs a factory part. They just seem to hold together forever. Next chain will be aftermarket - they're actually better, and far lower price - and you don't need to drop the swing-arm to change them (which I am glad I did anyway because all the bearings and pivots needed a good cleaning and greasing).

See you on the road!:dance:
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