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2018 Husqvarna Vitpilen 401 and 1981 Kawasaki KZ440B
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hello All!

I have been working on the KZ400b in the garage since picking it up last fall (although it's been slow going during the holidays). Working on the tear down. Check out my pics!

Wheel Tire Plant Fuel tank Vehicle

Tire Wheel Fuel tank Automotive fuel system Vehicle

Tire Wheel Fuel tank Vehicle Automotive lighting

Tire Wheel Automotive tire Automotive lighting Motor vehicle


Future plans (and dreams)
Clean up frame and powder coat
Add hoop and brown cafe seat
Black out exhaust with new muffler and wrap
New headlight
Paint tank (Color TBD)
Smaller speedo and tach removal
Black rear shocks/springs
Replace or rebuild leaky front forks
Black out engine
Remove airbox and add filters
Powder coat wheels update tires (Scrambler?)
Clean up handlebar controls
New throttle and grips
Biltwell handlebars
Fix up brakes
(I may be missing things)

Long list and a long way to go! This is my first classic bike/ build any advice anyone can give will be 100% appreciated!
 

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other then the possible replacement of fork seals are you going to make other performance mods? most of your list is cosmetic . painting parts do not make them better. how about keep the airbox and a 2-1 header? ikon or progressive rear shocks? maybe a dynojet carb kit? my 2 cents, do as you want, carry on.
 

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rather than spending the money on powdercoating the wheels, you could look into upgrading the brakes to discs and then building some wheels using excel rims and stainless spokes. That would look good, stop good, and save weight... good.
 

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2018 Husqvarna Vitpilen 401 and 1981 Kawasaki KZ440B
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
other then the possible replacement of fork seals are you going to make other performance mods? most of your list is cosmetic . painting parts do not make them better. how about keep the airbox and a 2-1 header? ikon or progressive rear shocks? maybe a dynojet carb kit? my 2 cents, do as you want, carry on.
Thanks for the ideas! I wasn't planning on doing much for performance other then repairing and stabilizing any issues that come up.
 

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2018 Husqvarna Vitpilen 401 and 1981 Kawasaki KZ440B
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
rather than spending the money on powdercoating the wheels, you could look into upgrading the brakes to discs and then building some wheels using excel rims and stainless spokes. That would look good, stop good, and save weight... good.
I was considering that as well, but am concerned about all of the other modifications (money) it would require to upgrade the brakes and do new wheels. Do you have any experience in changing wheels/upgrading brakes on these vintage bikes? Any idea on cost?
 

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This link should point you in the direction of some resources for figuring it out:


I think you could probably find a bolt on solution rather easily, look at other related models.

this link makes it seem that the KZ440 series progressed from A to B to D to G:


the KZ440G has cast wheels with disk brakes but it looks like it's belt drive. That could be solved with a simple sprocket/spacer.

 

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1979 XS750
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Do you have any experience in changing wheels/upgrading brakes on these vintage bikes? Any idea on cost?
[/QUOTE]
My dual front and single rear disc brakes including new Front master cylinder and Rebuilding rear master cylinder and rebuilding all 3 calipers and new lines was well over $200. I got my parts from brake crafters. USA made so shipping is good on them
 

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This
rather than spending the money on powdercoating the wheels, you could look into upgrading the brakes to discs and then building some wheels using excel rims and stainless spokes. That would look good, stop good, and save weight... good.
(y)
Excel is an alloy rim, alloy rims would be an upgrade. Powder coat paint on chrome steel stock rims is thick lipstick on a pig.
 

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"Biltwell handlebars" are they steel or aluminum, if they are steel where is the upgrade in that?
 

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2018 Husqvarna Vitpilen 401 and 1981 Kawasaki KZ440B
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Do you have any experience in changing wheels/upgrading brakes on these vintage bikes? Any idea on cost?
My dual front and single rear disc brakes including new Front master cylinder and Rebuilding rear master cylinder and rebuilding all 3 calipers and new lines was well over $200. I got my parts from brake crafters. USA made so shipping is good on them
[/QUOTE]
Old Man,
Did you change the wheels as well? My concern with changing wheels and brakes is the opening a can of expensive worms (New wheels/brakes require upgraded forks?, axels, will they fit with my current chain/sprocket, I don't have the tools/skill to thread spokes and my understanding is that is expensive as well). I am also limited with time and ability. I am not necessarily looking to build any type of a performance machine, but rather just a cool bike to ride around town on. I have other motorcycles if I am looking to go fast.
 

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2018 Husqvarna Vitpilen 401 and 1981 Kawasaki KZ440B
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
"Biltwell handlebars" are they steel or aluminum, if they are steel where is the upgrade in that?
TrialsRider,
I am going for more a of a scrambler look, so I am looking to do more of a moto style handlebar.
 

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Then I'd be looking at Renthal or Domino Tommaselli bars in aluminum, steel bars are garbage after the first crash.
 
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