Next! ’85 Kawasaki Ninja 600R Resto-mod

It may not seem like much at the moment, but we’ve got big plans for this old relic. Welcome to the next project here at Metrics.

1985 Kawasaki Ninja 600R (basket case)

The only good things about this bike are that we have all the plastics, the seats are in great shape, and it hasn’t been in a wreck.

What are the plans, you ask? Well, we’ve got a ’98 ZX7R engine, front end, and rear swingarm from another project. We’re going for a sleeper resto-mod.

Donor and project bikes

It may not seem like it, but this is progress. We’ve torn down both the project bike and the donor.

Believe it or not, this is progress!

We’ve got a few major issues to address. Although the donor motor does technically fit between the frame rails, most of the motor mounts need to be moved. That’s one of the reasons we chose this bike. It has a steel frame that’s easier to modify than aluminum.

ZX7 motor fits in the Ninja frame

The next issue is that swingarm pivot. The donor swingarm is about an inch wider than the stock 600 frame. Based on initial research, looks like we may be able to make enough space by modifying both the frame and swingarm slightly. Fingers crossed. We could revert to using the stock 600 swingarm, but it just won’t be as cool as the 750 swingarm with a 180 tire on it.

ZX7 Swingarm in rough position

Finally, the stem bearings are different sizes. We’ve torn everything down and have both sets of bearings removed. We’ll head over to the local bearing warehouse and try to find a set that matches our measurements.

Old Kawasaki Ninja 600 Front End Removed

Once we have those few items addressed, it will be time to clean, sand, prime, and paint the frame. We can assemble the frame, engine, and suspension before moving on to the bodywork, electrics, and other items.

We’re looking forward to this challenging project and turning out a serious, eye-popping resto-mod project in early 2020.

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