Bike of the Month May 2009. Bike of the Month May 09.

Stephane Roux, Quebec, Canada.

Back in the 80s I was a total fan of Kawasaki' GPz breed and I was a proud owner of a 1983 GPz550. 

When Kawasaki sent Eddie Lawson Superbike Replicas to the dealers,

I didn't have the budget to meet the exaggerated price tag of these limited editions

and were very scarce (Only 1200 were built in 1983 and 750 in 1982).

Friends and I sought after those ELR's,
we painted our motorcycles to make them look alike. Now I'm 44, after all those years,

raising a family and all,

I threw away many motorcycle magazines of that decade except

for a few of them. One of those is Cycle World's February 1982 issue featuring the Big,

Green Winning Machine.

Last summer my son tells me that there's a nice, green, somewhat oldish Kawasaki

for sale near our house and he's pretty sure I would like.

I was skeptic on my son's ability to know what I like. Still,

I hopped on my faithful 1978 SOHC CB750 Four to check it out.

Arrived, my knees bent and my jaw fell open to the ground,

total recall and time warped. It was true! There stands a real 1983 Canadian model KZ1000R

(no air suction system on top of the valve cover) with 39000 km (24180 miles) on the

odometer. It took two weeks of mind boggling, should I or not, and verifying that

this bike is an authentic ELR Bike of the Month May 09.

and decided to become the 3rd owner and brought it home.

Previous owner installed the Metmachex Engineering swing arm,

Works Performance rear shocks (same as those used by Eddie Lawson),

steel braided brake lines, chrome on engine side covers and belly pan.

All original parts were cleaned and kept in a box. ELR was due for a new cam chain

and leaked oil between cylinder block and engine case. Except for the paint condition

on the engine and rust on exhaust pipes, bike's appearance is flawless and unmolested.

I don't have the expertise and or tools to tackle the oil leaks,

timing chain and other miscellaneous fixes.

A few calls and word of mouth got me in contact with this shop, Owner and professional mechanic Jean-Pierre Lapalme likes to

have his customers to work with him, so all my spare time was spent in his shop working

with him, very much appreciated, Merci Jean-Pierre. Bike of the Month May 09. Bike of the Month May 09. Bike of the Month May 09. Bike of the Month May 09.


For the paint condition on engine, Bike of the Month May 09. Bike of the Month May 09.




previous owners fixed it with patch paint here and there to save appearance over the years.

So while fixing the oil leak and timing chain, this was the time to get it right. To do it,

we use heavy duty engine paint stripper. Let work and then water blast it.

Did this about four to five times! We then applied a very thin coat of black gloss BBQ paint. Bike of the Month May 09. Bike of the Month May 09. Bike of the Month May 09. Bike of the Month May 09.

While replacing cam chain we got the surprise of dealing with a 4 mm over sized pistons!

So this should bring displacement at 1117 cc Bike of the Month May 09. Bike of the Month May 09. Bike of the Month May 09. Bike of the Month May 09.

Luckily enough, according to the wear on the piston rings, not much kilometers has been done

after the oversize. So we honed the cylinders and put back the original piston rings and

cylinder head gasket. Jean-Pierre taught me how to lap the valves and we replaced the valve


Work continued with a complete bike revision. Carburetors cleaned and sync, new clutch,

new cables and steering head roller bearing. New chain drive installed on a new set of

front and rear sprocket ( 16 and 33 teeth) to provide a final drive ratio of 2.06 instead

of the original 2.93. Installed new black 4:1 Kerker megaphone system with optional large

megaphone, 1.5 x 11.25 " competition baffle. For performance and mostly for aesthetic,

we installed an Earl's performance oil cooler.
Even if restoration is a never finish operation.



 Bike of the Month May 09. Bike of the Month May 09.

 It's near show bike state and overall performance is awesome. This ELR is now ready willing

and able to tackle many trouble free kilometers and intend to go on a few bike shows.

Question is, once in a perfect state like this, should it be kept in a glass jar?

Or should I go for what it's intended for; red (green) hot a tire scorching curve carving road

sessions. I tried recent models like the ZRX and the likes and there's really 25 years of massive

development on today's motorcycles. They perform 100% better than a 1983 ELR. Guess it's

like comparing a 1973 Ford Mustang with today's new Mustang. It's just a question of

uniqueness when it comes to ride and tamper with a raw two valves per cylinder combustion,

raw 4 in 1 exhaust growl and last of breed of the big air cooled four cylinders superbike

genetics. So when I warm up the engine and I go for a ride, there's no motorcycle of the year

that can satisfy this uniqueness.

Remember, keep your vision far ahead and let the good times roll.

Special thanks to professional photographer, Alexandre Thibeault Bike of the Month May 09.
Thanks, Stéphane Roux Canada.

We will be featuring a different bike each month on
that we feel is deserving of the title "Bike of The Month."
Check back often to see what our pick is.

To nominate or submit your own bike for  "Bike of The Month." 
Send some info on yourself your bike and loads of pic's bigger the better.


I really want to bring THIS Registry up to date so accurate number's left in circulation can be made available,

this will intern help us get a true market value for insurance purposes.

Please include the chassis number and the month of production printed on the headstock of your bike.

Your name and location. and most importantly a picture's of your bike.

E-mail me at:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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