Q: Hi guys. I own a 1999 Kawasaki ZX-6R that is now sitting with 65,000km on the clocks. I’ve had it for over seven years now and it’s never given me any problems at all and it gets serviced at the correct intervals. Mainly because I can’t afford a new ZX-10 and it’s my only form of transport to get to work and play with at the weekends. Hopefully I’ll win the lottery soon and have a new ZX-10RR in my garage!
My reason for writing this though is that I recently went on a long run with my friends and did a spot of top speed dicing, which was great until the next day. When I started the bike I could hear a knocking noise coming from the engine but I’m not really sure where it’s from. I had to ride the bike to work, I have no choice, and the noise didn’t get any worse and did not affect the performance.
So, I’m afraid to ask, but do you have any ideas on what is wrong and, I’m not too keen to strip the motor etc? Any advice will be superb and thanks again.
A; I’m afraid it’s very bad news Mike! It’s either the small-end bearing on the piston side or, more than likely the big-end bearing on the crankshaft. These bikes/model are quite prone to this with high mileage and constant high revving.
You WILL have to strip the motor and remove the crankshaft to inspect it correctly, and check the piston pin and it’s bearing as well. If you keep riding it will eventually throw a ‘rod’ out of the motor and destroy the entire engine.
So either go for the repair after pricing, or try and source another engine? Preferably from a bike that’s been crashed, why you ask? Well the engine was obviously running at the time of the accident so you know it works, hopefully not with the same problem though.