I ran across my first real race bike, a 1987 KX250, a couple years ago. It had been brought in for service at a local shop.
Long story short, I contacted the owner and bought it. Whenever you have the opportunity to buy a piece of your own history, take it.
Most of my trick parts from back in the day were still on it: cartridge fork kit, Kehein 39mm D-slide carburetor and DMC pull rods. Other parts were not: DMC pipe and silencer. The widened foot pegs were there, but had seen better days.
I have decided to make it the “best it could have been” and am looking for parts and suggestions to achieve this goal.
I bought one new in '87. I wish I had never rode my neighbors '87 Honda CR250 after my purchase of the KX.
The 1987 Honda CR250 was cutting edge and beautiful from every angle. It won all the shootouts and has become legendary.
The 1987 Kawasaki KX250 was on equal footing after adding the cartridge fork kit and DMC pull rods.
I would love to ride both now properly set up and compare them to each other and even to modern bikes. I hope to get that chance at a vintage event with Evo 4 classes.
I will try to take and post some pictures of the bike in its current state as well as some of the parts I’ve collected for it.
I hope to find some pictures from back in the day too.
I wish I still had my old riding gear. Never believe it when the paramedic says he will cut at the seam.
Spark plug cap was missing, now replaced. That’s all it took.
Kick starter won’t retract on its own. Carb leaks like a sieve. Pipe and silencer mounts broken.
Many bolts missing or replaced with hardware store items. Plastic cracked and discolored.
But she runs!
She just needs some TLC. I always loved this bike.
I owned new KXs from '84 thru '89 and that '87 motor was real good. Handled good as well.
Are parts hard to find for the later 80s KXs compared to the old KXs?
The issue with the 1987 KX is many parts were one year only; so many OEM parts are out of stock.
For example, I imported 3 sets of UFO radiator shrouds and will have the old graphics scanned, cleaned up and sub-surface printed. I can’t get them here from
UFO or Kawasaki.
I have a clean example. Tom Morgan gave me the right radiator shroud from Wardy’s bike at the 1987 Pro National at Secession MX in Anderson, SC, and Jeff
autographed it on the white stripe.
My other OEM shrouds are rough, but clean enough to get the stripe and layout correct for the left shroud.
Thanks for the UFO link!
I had checked with several local dealers, who could get all the plastics except the radiator shrouds from Parts Unlimited.
This is exactly the kind of help I was looking for.
I am hoping to benefit from the collective knowledge of this forum for any set up tips, hop up parts, etc.
You actually have a good selection of oem parts available for your 87 kx250 if you go to the right sites
Buy OEM parts from Service Honda. Cheapest you'll find.
One of the best improvements you could make to the '87 KX line is to get the cartridge fork kit that was offered through Kawasaki.
Will the quick change clutch cover from an ’88 or ’89 KX250 work on the ’87?
I checked the microfiche and the gaskets are NOT the same part number.
There is nothing wrong with the original cover, but the convenience of the quick change
cover would be welcome since I will already have it apart to fix the kick starter spring.
You can restore a plastic gas tank pretty nicely in most cases. Take some 2500 grit and wet sand it until you get it really smooth. It cuts through the sun damage and creates a new surface. Then, just use some 3M final glaze and some elbow grease. You have to get it nice and warm and the shine and color will come right back.
You can use a buffing wheel if you want to, but you might get it too hot and actually burn the plastic. If you're careful not to spend too much time in one spot, you can get it to look almost like a new fuel tank.