1989 kx125 resto

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10/6/2014 4:56 AM
Edited Date/Time: 8/10/2018 9:47 AM

Here are a couple pics from a previous owner.. from what I learned this bike had been passed around to a couple people after being rescued from a bad owner. Nobody wanted to dive in, and after taking it apart I see why!

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Edit: restoration complete
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and some race footage from a SEVMX event:




Next, strip down


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Ride like a girl!!!
2016 KTM 500 EXC-F
Current project: 2007 Kawasaki KX250-R7 retro build
Current project #2: 1987 Kawasaki KX250-E1 rider/racer resto
1989 KX125 resto
1987 RM250 resto

10/6/2014 4:58 AM

Some close ups of years of abuse/neglect

Doesn't look so bad here?
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Check out that sprocket!
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right side. engine was drooling fresh oil from somewhere...
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swingarm was dirty but serviceable
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footpegs & mounts trashed
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Ride like a girl!!!
2016 KTM 500 EXC-F
Current project: 2007 Kawasaki KX250-R7 retro build
Current project #2: 1987 Kawasaki KX250-E1 rider/racer resto
1989 KX125 resto
1987 RM250 resto

10/6/2014 4:59 AM

Carb & boot crusty
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lots of corrosion here, but the bike put out a nice fat blue spark
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orange RTV, tell tale signs of shade tree mechanic
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clutch pack looked pretty good considering the outside of the engine and frame
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Ride like a girl!!!
2016 KTM 500 EXC-F
Current project: 2007 Kawasaki KX250-R7 retro build
Current project #2: 1987 Kawasaki KX250-E1 rider/racer resto
1989 KX125 resto
1987 RM250 resto

10/6/2014 4:59 AM


had to grind down the sprocket welding to get the cases apart
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no idea what was going on here... the more i looked at this bike the less I tried to think about it. haha.
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source of the oil leak - cracked drain plug threads. have to find some different cases...
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crank and rod looked ok and spun freely. sending it off to get rebuilt with OEM conn rod & bearing kit
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Ride like a girl!!!
2016 KTM 500 EXC-F
Current project: 2007 Kawasaki KX250-R7 retro build
Current project #2: 1987 Kawasaki KX250-E1 rider/racer resto
1989 KX125 resto
1987 RM250 resto

10/6/2014 5:01 AM
Edited Date/Time: 10/6/2014 9:41 AM

Ok so now I move on to the forks. More WTF goodness would be discovered...

89 kx's had the nice 46mm conventionals.. a lot of people ran these into the mid 90s (chunking the USD's that came on early perimeter frame KXs). good forks.

But look closely at the axle holder on the right leg. see anything?
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Previous owner had a 87 or earlier front wheel mounted up.. those wheels had smaller axles.. so they used their "ingenuity" to make this penny spacer to hold the loose axle in the 89 legs.



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Ride like a girl!!!
2016 KTM 500 EXC-F
Current project: 2007 Kawasaki KX250-R7 retro build
Current project #2: 1987 Kawasaki KX250-E1 rider/racer resto
1989 KX125 resto
1987 RM250 resto

10/6/2014 5:02 AM

Got the legs off and disassembled on the work bench. NOTE I wrote up a how-to on this process - click here for Thread #2. You will need a special tool to get the legs apart. I have pics of the tool, where to get it, and how it works - just follow thread #3.

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First set of forks in storage:
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Found a second set of legs that looked a LOT better - picked them up and broke them down too so I could pick and choose the nicer components from both sets
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Internals were pretty descent on both legs so I went with the ones that looked a little cleaner.
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Rebuilt and ready to install
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|

Ride like a girl!!!
2016 KTM 500 EXC-F
Current project: 2007 Kawasaki KX250-R7 retro build
Current project #2: 1987 Kawasaki KX250-E1 rider/racer resto
1989 KX125 resto
1987 RM250 resto

10/6/2014 5:03 AM

Shock looked crusty and abused. Removed spring and sent to a Race Tech service center here in GA.

ps if you have tips for a better way of removing the spring please reply & give details
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shock ready to be shipped off
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shock received back from Race Tech service center with next to no packing material inside. Shock was sticking out of the box when it arrived. I was not impressed after having spent about $250 getting it rebuilt.
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Need to get the original spring blasted and powder coated.. but thats for later.

|

Ride like a girl!!!
2016 KTM 500 EXC-F
Current project: 2007 Kawasaki KX250-R7 retro build
Current project #2: 1987 Kawasaki KX250-E1 rider/racer resto
1989 KX125 resto
1987 RM250 resto

10/6/2014 5:04 AM

Linkage that came with the bike was frozen up pretty good.
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Luckily I spotted a set on Ebay that was fully disassembled. Good for rebuilding

Pressing out the bearing races
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Shock mount was rusted up pretty good.. had to press this little one out (wouldn't come out with my vice)
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Got all of the bearings replaced and this piece is ready to go
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Ride like a girl!!!
2016 KTM 500 EXC-F
Current project: 2007 Kawasaki KX250-R7 retro build
Current project #2: 1987 Kawasaki KX250-E1 rider/racer resto
1989 KX125 resto
1987 RM250 resto

10/6/2014 5:04 AM

Linkage mount on the swingarm was tricky. Got the sleeve out using this tool
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But the bearings had to be pressed out.. took a bit of care and force to not damage the swingarm. Had the same problem getting the pivot bearings out.
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Ready for new bearings (to do - working on this today I hope)
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Ride like a girl!!!
2016 KTM 500 EXC-F
Current project: 2007 Kawasaki KX250-R7 retro build
Current project #2: 1987 Kawasaki KX250-E1 rider/racer resto
1989 KX125 resto
1987 RM250 resto

10/6/2014 5:05 AM

Back to the engine for a post..

The top end looked OK except for a broken post on the LH exhaust valve. This led to a big search for a replacement, or maybe for a repair. I posted a thread on VitalMX's Old School forum and got some help. The VitalMX thread is worth reading.. lots of options listed there for getting a power valve for these old bikes (the power valves are NLA and nearly impossible to find as NOS). Here's that thread: http://www.vitalmx.com/forums/Old-School-Moto,22/Custom-machining-an-obsolete-NLA-power-valve,1270119

Here's the top end with exhaust valves removed
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Sent my cylinder & head off to PowerSeal a couple weeks ago and hope to have it back soon.

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Ride like a girl!!!
2016 KTM 500 EXC-F
Current project: 2007 Kawasaki KX250-R7 retro build
Current project #2: 1987 Kawasaki KX250-E1 rider/racer resto
1989 KX125 resto
1987 RM250 resto

10/6/2014 5:06 AM

A couple months ago I got the frame stripped and ready for some repair & powder coat

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Had a local machine shop fix the right side footpeg mount (which isn't replaceable like the left side)
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I regret not having them fix the brake pivot mount.. completely overlooked that (after powder coating).

Dropped frame off at PCC in Atlanta
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and got it back a couple weeks later
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Ride like a girl!!!
2016 KTM 500 EXC-F
Current project: 2007 Kawasaki KX250-R7 retro build
Current project #2: 1987 Kawasaki KX250-E1 rider/racer resto
1989 KX125 resto
1987 RM250 resto

10/6/2014 5:06 AM

Got some new plastic and OEM replica graphics in a few weeks ago.
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Ride like a girl!!!
2016 KTM 500 EXC-F
Current project: 2007 Kawasaki KX250-R7 retro build
Current project #2: 1987 Kawasaki KX250-E1 rider/racer resto
1989 KX125 resto
1987 RM250 resto

10/6/2014 5:07 AM
Edited Date/Time: 10/6/2014 5:07 AM

This arrived today. NOS OEM bearing and rod kit.
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Ride like a girl!!!
2016 KTM 500 EXC-F
Current project: 2007 Kawasaki KX250-R7 retro build
Current project #2: 1987 Kawasaki KX250-E1 rider/racer resto
1989 KX125 resto
1987 RM250 resto

10/6/2014 5:08 AM

Swingarm and linkage bearings replaced.
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Newly plated cylinder came in last week.
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Carb and calipers cleaned up nicely:
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Ride like a girl!!!
2016 KTM 500 EXC-F
Current project: 2007 Kawasaki KX250-R7 retro build
Current project #2: 1987 Kawasaki KX250-E1 rider/racer resto
1989 KX125 resto
1987 RM250 resto

10/6/2014 5:11 AM

Next to remove the old bearings from cases. I used 1/4" threaded rod, ground it down a little then notched with a hand file. I also used a hacksaw to get a little reverse bite on the edge of the rod.

Used a tiny allen wrench to put in the bearing inner race behind the puller rod, to keep it snug.

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I also used a little MAP gas (only 4-5 seconds). Used a socket to knock it out.

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One more to go, hope to get to it tomorrow:
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Ride like a girl!!!
2016 KTM 500 EXC-F
Current project: 2007 Kawasaki KX250-R7 retro build
Current project #2: 1987 Kawasaki KX250-E1 rider/racer resto
1989 KX125 resto
1987 RM250 resto

10/6/2014 5:11 AM

Down to the last small bearing. This one is located across from the water pump. Almost no room to get my homemade tool behind the bearing race.

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Does the tool need to be paper thin? To be continued.... devil

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Ride like a girl!!!
2016 KTM 500 EXC-F
Current project: 2007 Kawasaki KX250-R7 retro build
Current project #2: 1987 Kawasaki KX250-E1 rider/racer resto
1989 KX125 resto
1987 RM250 resto

10/6/2014 5:12 AM

:?
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Ride like a girl!!!
2016 KTM 500 EXC-F
Current project: 2007 Kawasaki KX250-R7 retro build
Current project #2: 1987 Kawasaki KX250-E1 rider/racer resto
1989 KX125 resto
1987 RM250 resto

10/6/2014 5:13 AM

Second time was a charm.

Didn't make the lip of my second tool as wide. put a little more heat around the bearing (and on the back side of it).

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Now to clean these case halves up a little more.

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Ride like a girl!!!
2016 KTM 500 EXC-F
Current project: 2007 Kawasaki KX250-R7 retro build
Current project #2: 1987 Kawasaki KX250-E1 rider/racer resto
1989 KX125 resto
1987 RM250 resto

10/6/2014 5:14 AM
Edited Date/Time: 10/6/2014 5:29 AM

After cleaning a bit more and inspecting more closely, I decided to bail on the right side engine case I picked up from Ebay. Crank seal surface is corroded - see the big hole where the tool tip is? Not sure I want to chance this engine on a suspect seal surface.

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Dropping off my original case with broken drain bung to a local TIG welder.

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Ride like a girl!!!
2016 KTM 500 EXC-F
Current project: 2007 Kawasaki KX250-R7 retro build
Current project #2: 1987 Kawasaki KX250-E1 rider/racer resto
1989 KX125 resto
1987 RM250 resto

10/6/2014 5:15 AM
Edited Date/Time: 10/6/2014 9:51 AM

While the original matched case is at a shop being repaired (oil drain plug collar broken), I'm gathering stuff I'll need to assemble the lower end.

The first thing I need is a tool to pull the crank into case halves. Kawasaki doesn't offer special tool 57001-1174 anymore, but there is an alternate on Ebay:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/CRANKSHAFT-JIG-REPLACES-KAWASAKI-TOOL-57001-1174-TO-HELP-YOU-INSTALL-CRANK-MOTOR-/200888811855

I'm hearing I can make my own crank puller from metal plumbing pipe - will get to that later.


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Setting out bottom end bits on the workbench so I can go through what I have, and see what needs to be replaced. Obviously the broken gears in the pics have to go.

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|

Ride like a girl!!!
2016 KTM 500 EXC-F
Current project: 2007 Kawasaki KX250-R7 retro build
Current project #2: 1987 Kawasaki KX250-E1 rider/racer resto
1989 KX125 resto
1987 RM250 resto

10/6/2014 5:16 AM

What size tips are needed for these snap rings/circlips? I had a devil of a time getting these off.. ending up mangling a few of them. The snap ring ends kept popping off the tips. I tried a smaller diameter pair and those bent.

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|

Ride like a girl!!!
2016 KTM 500 EXC-F
Current project: 2007 Kawasaki KX250-R7 retro build
Current project #2: 1987 Kawasaki KX250-E1 rider/racer resto
1989 KX125 resto
1987 RM250 resto

10/6/2014 5:17 AM

First two OEM bearings installed in the left side crank case.

Still waiting for the tig guy to finish welding the right side case. Hope to get that next week.

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Ride like a girl!!!
2016 KTM 500 EXC-F
Current project: 2007 Kawasaki KX250-R7 retro build
Current project #2: 1987 Kawasaki KX250-E1 rider/racer resto
1989 KX125 resto
1987 RM250 resto

10/6/2014 5:18 AM

Swingarm, shock, linkage bolted and torqued to spec (except for pivot bolt which can't be tightened till I have the motor in place).

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Ride like a girl!!!
2016 KTM 500 EXC-F
Current project: 2007 Kawasaki KX250-R7 retro build
Current project #2: 1987 Kawasaki KX250-E1 rider/racer resto
1989 KX125 resto
1987 RM250 resto

10/6/2014 10:44 AM

Lookin' good so far... Nice work!

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10/6/2014 10:45 AM
Edited Date/Time: 10/6/2014 10:47 AM

*

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10/6/2014 12:16 PM

For the shock spring: Spin the adjustment collars all the way up, until they are no longer on the threads and are free in the area between the threads and the reservoir. This will allow you to move the spring far enough up to get to the locking collars.

For bearing removal: http://www.harborfreight.com/blind-hole-bearing-puller-95987.html
If the bearing ID is too small, rip/pry the bearing cage out, then move all the bearings to one side of the inner race. The race and bearings will now come right out, leaving the outer race. Use the blind hold bearing puller and you're good to go. 5 minutes, tops.

Although you need matching Kawi green nail polish tongue , great job on the restore; Queen.

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10/6/2014 4:29 PM

Great build thread!

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10/6/2014 8:08 PM

Now you need to come race with us I Southeast Vintage Motocross. We have a two day race on the vintage track at monster mountain. Oct 25, 26

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"I'll beat yer ass. Nine times outa ten. Every time" Ronnie Mac

10/6/2014 9:00 PM

She won't be ready by then, but I'd love to.

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Ride like a girl!!!
2016 KTM 500 EXC-F
Current project: 2007 Kawasaki KX250-R7 retro build
Current project #2: 1987 Kawasaki KX250-E1 rider/racer resto
1989 KX125 resto
1987 RM250 resto

10/7/2014 7:00 AM

Looking good! I make replacement brake pivots, too bad you pc'd the frame already. You can take some slop out just replacing the pedal or just the bushing. You'll have to make/source a new bushing though.

http://i114.photobucket.com/albums/n248/Jeekinz/94%20KX250/IMG_6547.jpg

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04 KX125
94 KX250SM
75 Z1-900