Major service

The bike had hit 30,000KM and was in need of service. The front brake calliper dust pads were ripped, the lever grating under pressure and the face of the screws on the brake fluid box completely worn and unable to be unscrewed. Plus the engine was running rough with chugging and surging occurring under acceleration and to top it all off suspension oil was starting to leak out of the top air valves.

So, considering it was supposed to be rainy season I pulled the bike apart to get to the carburettors, which I suspected of being responsible for the rough engine performance no doubt caused by the dusty roads in Timor and the poor quality fuel from there and Indonesia.

Sure enough, the diaphragm valves of the carbies both had numerous scratch’s and the butterfly valves were sticky with carbon deposits. I prepared for my toughest maintenance job yet – disassembling and cleaning the carbies. Try as I might though, I couldn’t get past step 1 of the manual – disconnecting the brace that keeps both carbies level! Probably a good thing since you are supposed to have a special tool to make sure they are level when you reconnect them!

Rather than put everything back together and take the whole bike for service, I figured it would be better (cheaper) just to take in the parts that needed work. After several trips to Bikers community land I finally made it in with the front brake (caliper, hose and lever), carbies and translator. They were very surprised to hear of a Kawasaki KLE 500 in Japan! Turns out there would be more parts for my bike in Europe as it was only manufactured for Europe, Africa and Australia. They have been extremely helpful though and we identified enough replacement parts for the carbies and calliper to make it worthwhile, plus I will finally upgrade the brake with a new Daytona lever and steel braided hose.

Upgrade to a progressive spring for the front suspension is also in the pipeline. Should be back on the road by Septermber, just in time for Richys visit.

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