HELP! I CAN'T GET MY FAIRING OFF!!!

Hello esteemed LondonBikers - I’ve just bought a used and abused Kawasaki Ninja ZX7R - Bike sounds/rides alright but I’m not sure of the service history - let’s say it’s inconsistent e.g. looked in the airbox and it looks like it’s never had the fugging filter changed (bikes got 20k on clock) - you could grow some decent king edwards in the compost of sucked in dirt, leaves and dead flies! Luckily the filter did a valiant job (beyond the call of duty etc) in keeping the crap out of the actual carbs - the chamber containing the inlet ports was clean and dirt free.I’m carrying out a full service in an attempt to get everything at year zero - plugs, air filter, oil + I’m checking the valves are in clearance.

Natch the fairing fasteners - mixture of hexagonal and philips heads (all stripped/damaged and useless) - are made of some kind of melted cheese + they’re nicely rusted and seized - and I cant get them out!

I’ve had a go with an impact driver - no joy - only other option that springs to mind is either drilling out completely (not sure about that one) - or drilling partially and using a screw extractor (more professional approach).

Be most grateful if someone could fill me in on the best modus operandi for getting these thing out - thanks in advance plus coffees/drinks etc when I eventually get to meet you on this thing at BM/Ace ;).

ha ha having had one myself…and the same problemo…the only way without wrecking your fairings is to drill the heads ooff! the offending blighters…but remember to get replacement screws and fixtures from dealer/or similar supplier beforehand…o and those airboxes are allways cruddy its to do with the air induction…have fun:D

Cheers Steve! - nice to know it’s not just me/my bike! :smiley: Have visited some Kawasaki forums and it is as you say - lot’s of questions about corroded fairing fasteners!

I got a real shock when I looked in the airbox! There was a a whole eco-system in there! Again - nice to know it’s not unusual!

I am obviously still a tourist in the land of Kawasaki Heavy Industries! :wink:

Drilling out fastening is another of God’s tests to frustrate us mere mortals.

The theory is so straight forward, the actuality is a dog.

If you can get a decent hole, use the screw extractor 'cos you have just the “nut” left to deal with after. (Copper grease.)

Take the head off and you now have a near impossible bit of rusted sh*t left to deal with.

Whatever, when you put the bu88er back together, use plenty of copper grease on the fastenings to save a re run next time.

(Sorry, but am I glad this s not my problem.)

Use a chainsaw

Cheers Oldguy! Really appreciate getting your (experienced) take on this perrenial problem! The extractor it is then! I’ll nip out tomorrow and see if I can track a kit down.

I tell you what Oldguy - after stripping/attempting to strip down this bike it just reminds me what a load of Lazy fuggers some people are! No evidence of copper grease what so ever on any fastening. I’m seriously wondering if this bike was ‘EVER’ serviced - It will be interesting to see what state the plugs are in (haven’t got to them yet).

Thanks for making the ‘stuck in the garage attempting to extract 6 seized fasteners’ experience less lonely chaps. Drinks are on me! :wink:

i personally would never use a screw extractor on something as small as a fairing screw as they are usually only M4 or M5 and the extractor will be so thin and brittle you will end up in a bigger mess than before when it breaks and it will, I can guarantee it.

Before getting the drill out. Get a torx bit (star shaped bit) just a bit bigger than the allen key hole in the bolt and hammer it into the hole.

9 times out of 10 this will give you enough purchase to undo the seized screw.

Good luck:cool:

Cheers Chunks! That sounds like a really good idea - i’ll give it a go! :wink:

:slight_smile:

Cheers puppy! - that’s great! - looks like i’ll be putting my credit card behind the bar (drinks on me) - thanks fellas! :wink:

Never come across Chunky’s torx bit trick before, but it sounds good and well worth a try.

Whats the worst that can happen? You end up owning a set of torx bits.

As for people being lazy with the copper grease, I’ll bet most garages couldn’t find a tube in the workshop.

Yep I’ve ended up owning a set of torx bits! And it was worth it as Chunkys technique worked! (thanks Chunks!) :wink: I cried hallelujah as the fairing came off. Puppy’s centre punch technique also came in handy on one of the seized bolts. Thanks to everyone for their input - all of it useful.Got the head off and aligned the T mark to get top dead centre (in two different positions to achieve the right order of lobe positions for intake/exhaust - following Haines manual to the letter) and it appears that 5 of the sixteen valves are a bit tight :ermm: - I’m convinced that this 20k bike has never had it’s clearances checked - cylinder head cover bolts looked mint (never been touched) it should of had at least two clearance checks by now. So re-shimming is obviously in order (feck! I thought I’d be lucky and it would be nicely in clearance).

The bike doesn’t produce smoke/starts ok - so hopefully the valves aren’t burnt yet (I’m guessing - from a bit of reading - that burnt valves manifest themselves as a smoking exhaust/hard to start?)

That’s the next bit of kit to buy if you can’t cadge one for a day - a compression guage. Brilliantly simple bit of kit.

Dead easy thing to use, just following the instruction leaflet, or look on line, and you can easily check for valve leakage and piston ring sealing with nothing more than a plug spanner and an oil gun.

I’d lend you mine but the b*stard that cadged mine “for the weekend” (thirty years ago) still aint got round to returning it.

Thanks for the info regarding the compression gauge Oldguy! - it answers nicely my post above and on Bike Talk regarding some tight valve clearances (posted yesterday). After checking the valves again more closely with a feeler gauge I found three to be out of spec (the tightest is out buy 0.04mm). I don’t know how long they have been out of spec as I have no bills for valve clearance checks attached to this bike (bike has 20k on clock).I guess that if damage has been caused by an out of clearance valve I could check by measuring the compression with a gauge (as you have kindly pointed out) and comparing this to the service data. If the compression test comes up ok then hopefully that means that there is no valve damage?

Cheers Oldguy - I’m just starting to get into the valves side of things and it’s very interesting! :wink: