Thursday, 10 November 2011

My Attic find 1970 Kawasaki H1R

     Well im starting this blog, mainly so i have a record of the restoration process of one of the rarest most sought after Kawasaki race bikes ever. The H1R.
     My family had a locally owned/operated Kawasaki dealership from the late 60's  until 2000.  I grew up racing and riding, tho not much into street, i remember a customer who was a road racer... Fast forward to 2011 and im working at a aircraft engine production facility and the road racer i remember as a kid used to work there. I got chatting to a few of the guys that worked with him, they had told me he still has his racebike in his attic, all torn apart. I didnt think too much of it till i followed it up and figured out his old racebike was an H1R.

     A few phone calls later im at his house, he dug out the H1R out of the attic, literally, had been up there for 20 years. Last time it was raced was 1981. it was rougher then id hoped, but as original as he claimed! originality in hard to come by for a bike of this nature.

 Shit, lost all the pics of it torn apart at his house!!! so here are a few after i bolted it back together.

     Thats the way i got it, seized, rusty, dirty, but original right down to the H1RA kit which included new "non cross over" exhaust, CDI ignition, pistons and cylinders.

     Oh, and it should look like this. . .



  2. Should've kept the original paint scheme. Five or ten years from now, the collectors are gonna realize that they, like the rest of us, are sick of seeing the same damn bike over & over & OVER again. Every bike with real history and more to the point CHARACTER, is being stripped & rebuilt as a pretend version of one particular most well known specimen of it's breed. When in truth racing has a much more rich and COLOURFUL history! The replacement bodywork might be just one more expensive initial investment, but to have the "Green Meanie" look AND a set of original INDIVIDUAL racing livery? Worth it, IMHO.

    I mean, yeah - maybe this is more true with bikes like the Dick Mann CB750 racing type aka 'CR750', or my beloved DOHC-4 and it's KZ 'competition', being stripped & repainted as the "Spencer & Lawson at Daytona" so much it begins to sound like "Darmok & Jalad at Tanagra"! AMA Superbike is a poor example I suppose. But you get my point, hey?

    It's something that's taking place with the Warbird aircraft already, where the Spitfire people all want 'em to look like that top brass guy's personal transport, with the sky blue colour & the four stars on the side? Well just think of all the UNREALIZED ARCHAEOLOGY which is being swept under the carpet for the sake of HOMOGENEITY and VERISIMILITUDE....


    1. Your right. They all look the same. I'm partial to the gpz900 colour scheme. I might strip it and paint it like that.