Whilst I was in the USA doing the Pacific Coast Highway in a 5.0L V8 Mustang Convertible, I thought it was long overdue for Blue Rex to have some care and attention, so it was off to Larry at PDQ to give it a good fettle and its MoT.
And it really was a good fettle: the old Datatool alarm was finally consigned to the bin, as was the battery. The carbs were basically overhauled and a couple of pipes and o-rings were replaced. There was a new chain and sprocket set. There was a new set of tyres to replace those that were on there that were many years old and had all the grip of Donald Trump.
It was then MoT’d and it passed with a mileage of 19,462 which was 40 miles up from last year’s and was basically the mileage out of London to PDQ.
Whilst at PDQ, Larry whacked it on the dyno to see how it measured up, some 11 years after the team at PDQ had breathed on it. 154.89bhp at 10,100rpm (158.37bhp) and 90.5lb/ft of torque at 7,830rpm (91.5lb/ft), 2011 figures in brackets.
It’s a new dyno – so not necessarily a true like-for-like comparison – but it’s still close to what it was putting out before, which is pleasing.
Larry was also kind enough to grab a socket and a screwdriver to swap out my Pazzo Racing clutch lever for a shorty one when I collected it. A previous problem with trapping the gloves over my non-existent fingers when pulling in the clutch…
I used my disabled person’s Freedom Pass to get there, so it cost me nothing and the ride back was lovely: back in a little over an hour (with a fuel stop) thanks to filtering and people working from home.
Well today I went to collect the ZRX from PDQ post-fettling. And yes, I think it looks great!
Larry mentioned that Nick had test-ridden it just to be on the safe side after they’d achieved their best-ever dyno results for a ZRX1200R on standard carbs/bores. I’d asked for a 44T rear sprocket as before and Larry suggested it would be sensible to go back to a 42T at some point as Nick had come back wide-eyed and declared it a tad berserk… We’ll see tomorrow!
A quick update on Blue Rex’s progress: it turns out that reprofiling my standard cams would have been experimental and Larry wasn’t prepared to experiment on a customer’s bike, so we agreed to buy a new set of ZZR1200 cams after all along with stronger valve springs.
As the clutch had been slipping on track for a while, I also asked Larry to upgrade the clutch plates and springs whilst it was apart.
In the intervening period, its MoT has expired so it’s been MoT’d and passed.
Worse was yet to come: PDQ have been awarded the sole concession for Dymag wheels worldwide and was offering an introductory deal … so a set of 7 spoke magnesium alloy wheels in satin black are going on with a new, slightly larger section Bridgestone BT016 tyre (which should be fine for our planned Ardeche Valley trip in June) rather than a full-on trackday tyre. Oh and as my secondhand Akrapovic full system would be looking out of place now, I’ve upgraded to a new hexagonal system with carbon fibre end can to set it all off – the removed parts will be for sale on the OC when I collect it. As that won’t be for a week or two, PDQ will run the engine in on the dyno and do a pre and post run-in dyno run for a reading as to what the engine is putting out.
One of the few issues I have with the Kawaskai ZRX1200R is its seat: when you first climb on it seems very plush and comfortable, but after 80 miles or so it does start getting uncomfortable. So I ordered a Sargent Solo replacement seat from the States.
Whereas before I’d be shuffling around uncomfortably after a relatively short while, the Sargent cossets your bum in comfort and even has space and a tube for you to stow something in the seat itself (in my case a ZRXOA rubber torch).
The seat is slightly slippery when you wear leathers but IÂ find that quite useful when shifting my bum from side to side on trackdays.