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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited by Moderator)
Hey folks!
New to this forum, and the other day found a 2004 GSX-R750 that needs some love real bad. Picked it up for cheap out of someone's back yard. It is in quite rough shape, but I plan to spend the next 6-9 months bringing this thing back to life, and getting it out on track. Here's how it looks on day one:
Tire Wheel Automotive lighting Automotive tire Fuel tank


Picture doesn't do it justice, it really is quite in bad shape. Regardless, here is my recount of the condition:
  • Brakes do not work. Warped front rotors, no friction on front or rear, and rear pedal is sticky.
  • Entire instrument cluster, headlights, and turn signals do not power on.
  • For some reason, bike starts when clutch is pulled in. Very weird.
  • Suspension is quite crusty and bad
  • Plant/bug matter inside the intake
  • Chain is in bad shape
  • Tires are unusable
  • General wear and tear, rust, and corrosion.
  • Crappy straight pipe.
  • Engine starts and runs quite well. No leaks, no sounds, shifts good, clutch works, makes good power.
  • Key/Ignition are real janky, lots of wiggling involved.
  • Front harness for the lights and cluster has burned wire
  • Crappy poorly installed HID kit (probably caused the harness burning)
  • Awful stickers and spray paint job, and missing fairing fasteners.

There are certainly more issues to reveal once I get in there, and I will once I get to those parts. But my plan is to first get the bike to a safe to ride condition, buying only upgrade or OEM parts where required, test riding it around town for a while, and once it has proved its reliability, I will deck it out with all the track parts I want. Here is the current plans to make it safe to ride for a while:

  • Fix the instrument cluster, lights, and turn signals. Repair burned harness, already got it on the bench.
  • Replace brake rotors with aftermarket rotors.
  • Replace front master cylinder and crappy lever with aftermarket unit, probably Brembo RCS
  • Rebuild all calipers, replace all seals, clean everything.
  • New brake pads.
  • Rebuild rear master cylinder.
  • Replace brake lines with steel lines.
  • Inspect and repair entire engine harness if needed
  • Replace clutch lever with something not terrible
  • Rebuild front forks with new seals and new fluids
  • Inspect rear shock, see what work may be needed
  • Replace main fuel hose
  • Repair or replace foot pegs and pedals
  • Repair fairings that are poorly mounted, as cheaply and safely as possible
  • Adjust valve clearance, inspect cam shaft area
  • Check compression, if it is poor, rebuild the top end and replace piston rings, and hone cylinders.
  • Check tank pickup, filter, and other parts for corrosion or rust, replace and clean as necessary.

And at that point, I think I will ride it around for a while. Once it checks out, it'll be time for track parts!
This thread will just be a following of this long process, I will post updates every now and then.

As of today, I have gotten the front end of the fairings off, and have begun inspecting and repairing the front main harness. Also removed the cheapy HID kit, and cleaning up the parts.

Wish me luck fellas.
-Mike
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Made some good progress today.

Started ripping into the bike. I managed to take off:
  • Fuel tank
  • Air box
  • Throttle bodies
  • All fairings
  • Battery
  • Entire engine harness
  • ECU
  • Rectifier
  • Spider living on top of the air box, lost tire gauge, and spider webs. Lol.

This thing has been absolutely abused. People assembling and wiring parts of this motorcycle with zero knowledge or skill on those things. Someone put on an aftermarket stator cover, which actually is put on decently. However, the wires coming from the stator to the main ECU/Engine harness were crimped, and the wires weren't even connected. Literally. There was a battery tender hookup with loose leads hooked up to the battery inside there, the terribly installed and equally bad HID kit up front, and some more damaged/removed OEM plugs and wires. The next great part was that the airbox wasn't even mounted to the throttle bodies with those rubber boots. It was just sitting on top of the throttles... Lame. Could be a chance it ingested dirt or dust, but with how bad condition the wiring is, I don't think the owners got much riding done on it while in that condition. Nothing looked like the exposed throttle bodies were any more dirty than the others.

To me, it seems like literally a miracle I got home with this bike, since the battery wasn't even getting charged, and I started it maybe 5-6 times and rode it almost a hundred miles! Jeez!

It wouldn't be so cool of a project if all was easy and well done the first time though. So I am looking forward to making this crusty gem into a rad, great running, reliable motorcycle. New work orders added to the docket:
  • Clean injectors in parts cleaner
  • Clean throttle bodies, valves and exterior
  • Verify integrity and continuity of main engine harness, repair as needed, clean connectors with corrosion
  • Re-wire stator
  • Drain, clean, and treat fuel tank as needed
  • Replace main fuel line
  • Clean fuel pump and filters
  • Replace tank breather and overflow lines due to cracking
  • Clean removed electronics, store until reassembly
  • Clean air box, hardware, sensor, and air filter

At this point, there is so much weird stuff in this bike that I think it would be the smartest to just remove the entire engine, and perform maintenance and cleaning on it and the frame. The engine has kinda unknown miles (guess I will find out once I fix the main engine harness and plug in the instrument cluster) and is probably due for all fluid changes, valve clearance check, replace all leaky or corroded gaskets, and if I can afford it, replace piston rings and hone the cylinders. Might be easiest now when I literally have everything else coming off. Then again, might be worthwhile to test the repaired engine harness on the motor as is, since I know it literally runs.

Good day overall, fast progress being made. Probably going to work on these bits for a while, then rewire the handlebar controls and ignition, and see if I have an electrically working motorcycle. Should be fun!

Pic for progress.
Motor vehicle Automotive tire Gas Auto part Engineering

-Mike
 

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Dreaming of buttsecks for years...
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FYI, when you pull the front end, it's so much easier to take the bolts out for the fairing stay. The entire nose comes off with 2 bolts. Based on appearance, I would concur you want to drop the engine and do a deep clean/inspection of everything.

Going that far, make sure to clean and repack the head bearings. All coolant hoses need replaced.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Absolutely, good ideas. I will have to get to that soon enough. Thinking of repacking the wheels as well.

Today I got the air box and throttle bodies super cleaned up. I still need to clean the injectors and reinstall the fuel rail.
Up next is checking the main engine harness for defects, and then inspecting the tank and fuel pump. So far though, looks like sitting outside all these years hasn't damaged very much stuff, but just made a lot of it incredibly dirty.

I've already got a massive list of parts to buy. Progress will be slow, but constant.
@TheGeek You have any experience with the special socket to take off the engine mounting nuts? Is it something I need to find the exact tool of, or is it commonly available? That was all I didn't have on hand to get the motor out.

-Mike
 

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Camera lens Font Automotive tire Camera Screenshot


This is what I bought on Amazon for my frame swap. Part numbers 08-067 and 08-068. I checked and it would be about $115 for both today. YES! These are absolute necessity. The engine is registered to one side and the thrust adjusters all need proper torque. You'll also need some 12pt deep wall metric sockets. Overall, it's not that hard of a job as long as you have help steadying the engine in and out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Progress last few days.
  • Wiped down the entire bike + motor with Simple Green. Looks way better, 95% of the grime is off everything, easier to work on.
  • Hand controls removed, cleaned, and broken switches repaired. Ignition also removed, and cleaned.
  • Rear subframe skirt and all parts fully removed, wiped down and cleaned.
  • Cut off crappily crimped weird connector on main engine harness for the stator, prepped for direct connection to stator.
  • Re-pinned headlights/gauge cluster harness connector, cleaned the contacts in ultrasonic baths.

Now that everything is actually much cleaned up, I may just leave the motor in. Almost all the dirt and sludge came off, and I polished up areas with corrosion or just splattered gunk. It looks astronomically better, and will be way easier to work on, without a fear of getting dirt or anything inside the engine. TBD on this one.

The wiring should be just about ready to throw back in the bike. All the damaged, burned, shorted, or otherwise incorrect wiring has just about all been repaired, and verified with the wiring diagram. Had a bunch of hand control switches that were damaged, and I think part of the causes for the burned ground wire on the front lights and gauge harness. I think the control buttons for the starter and brake switch got stuck on, and mostly the starter being stuck on caused excessive current to continuously flow through the front harness, causing the damage. No fuses anywhere blown, and correct fuses where there should be. I am quite comfortable soldering, so I will be soldering my stator onto the main engine harness, which makes it removable should I need to do that. The crimps and random 3-prong plug added for the stator were trash and I think only 2/3 of the stator wires were actually connected...

Still need to clean my injectors prior to reinstallation. Thinking a 9v battery will do to open them up for cleaning. May use my power supply and use a lower voltage though.

Also still need to inspect the tank. Fuel pump seemed to work when I last rode it, but I didn't get a chance to wring it out very much. I will at the least remove the fuel pump and clean the screen and other bits, and inspect for debris and other oddities.

Other than that, I think I should be able to get the motor running again, and at least see if the gauges work, get any FI codes, and check operation of all the engine accessories.

That is this week's plan anyhow. Still gotta do a ton of parts shopping, but my funds are cut short from the purchase lol. WA state registration is a bit pricey as well.

Once verified to be working and running, then it will be time to order up all the repair parts for the motor, and then changing all the fluids and adjust the valve clearance.

Pics for progress. Coming along good! Just wish I had more cash on hand to keep the project running full speed, lol.

-Mike
Motor vehicle Hood Automotive design Automotive exterior Engineering

Automotive fuel system Motor vehicle Automotive exterior Auto part Automotive super charger part

Automotive tire Automotive fuel system Motor vehicle Automotive design Automotive exterior
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I'm in Bellevue! Right across the way. Would be rad to go for a ride once this comes together! But for now, I'm riding my 300 around town and for track this season. You going to the Ridge this season?

Progress for today:
  • refitted the engine harness, began plugging things back in and routing the wires more appropriately
  • further general cleaning
  • installed the rear sub frame plastic bottom
  • cleaned injectors, reinstalled on throttle
  • drained the tank, got the fuel pump out, cleaned the pickup screen
  • rectifier, rad fan, horn, ecu, and ignition reinstalled

Things are coming along well. I tried goof off on the tank to remove the spray paint, and it literally did nothing. Tank paint is probably ruined, so I'll have to strip it all the way down and repaint later.

I actually intended to reinstall the throttle today, but I forgot my vacuum, and I need it to suck some dust out of the intakes when I pull the paper towels out of there.

I also cannot get the bar ends off for some reason. The bolt is loose, and I can even rotate the bar end, but both will not come out. Maybe I'm missing something? Exploded diagram doesn't reveal any secrets...

Still missing an air filter and breather filter, because money - but i think I will be able to fire the bike up for a few minutes without them. Might mess up the fueling slightly, but that's fine just to make sure stuff is in working order. But the plan is still to finish installing all the sensors and harness parts, get the battery in there, and see if the electrical issues are resolved. Hopefully they are, otherwise I'll have to continue this effort before transitioning into fixing all the other oddities.

-Mike
 

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Bar ends are probably just frozen. From the other end, there's a hole you can put a punch through if need be.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Might have to punch them out then. It's the dumbest thing, I can spin them and everything, its not like seized. Makes no sense how it could be stuck and rotate, so maybe I just need to pull harder when spinning it lol.

Previous owner said the speedo stopped working at some point too, and she replaced the sensor, and then later the whole dash and everything quit working, so I will have to investigate that sensor. I got it off and the sensor looked fine, but I want to make sure there are no mechanical.... "oddities" around the sensor.

Also, what's up with the clutch on this thing? Does the cable go to a twist rod or something that runs through the engine to the right side? The cable goes to the left side. I'll have to look in the exploded diagrams and shop manual on it.

-Mike
 

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I am in Renton actually, so right close. Im always down for a ride when you are ready.
Yeah Im going to The Ridge as much as I can this year. Thats where that pic is from. I have a dedicated track bike now. Same 05, 750.
I have some crashed track plastics, and tank for that bike you can have if you want.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Right on man! Dude I am actually interested in those bits you've got. Looks like I can't send PM's... Guess I am too new a member or not premium, lol.

Would be rad if you came out to the Ridge on 5/1, my buddies and I are signed up!

-Mike
 

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This bike has a recall on the front master cylinder. Use your vin, and go to the website to search the vin. See if the recall has been done. If not, you will get a new master cylinder installed at a dealer. And I think they are giving a gift card too. They want them done.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Oh wow, good call. I haven't even looked at the recalls or other notices yet. I'll do that!

That track day is OPRT. I'd sign up quick if you want a slot! I picked group B. My buddies and I will all be on our 300s for the day, we'd love to have you in the pits with us! My buddy who also used to race at the Ridge might be out testing a new R6 he picked up as well.

Anyhow, got the electrical stuff powered up today! Hooked everything back up except the lights, and bam. Got a instrument cluster with all lights working, brake and turn signal switches/lights working, both hand controls working, and voltage on all the light plugs. Fantastic!

Only thing I haven't done yet is fire up the motor. Need to get the gas tank put back together at least enough to get it to start. Then, hopefully gather some check codes or anything of the like once it's running. May have to reset the throttle position sensors and reset the idle speed and cold start idle.

Really hyped! Once this gets sorted out, I can tackle all the remaining mechanical monsters, and start ordering pieces and parts.

Still also need to get the wire harness secured to the frame and such as well. Fun times.

-Mike
 

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^^^ do yourself a favor and lookup the process for adjusting the STPS and the fast idle speed.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Yes of course, I have a shop manual, I forgot to mention. Not just going elbows deep in a bike I have zero experience with lol.

Just trying to think of things that will need recalibration or adjustment after being ripped apart.

-Mike
 

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Nice to see a K4/K5 getting rescued and restored. For a long time only the oil coolers and srads got all the lovin.
 
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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I am not versed in the GSX-R history quite yet, but I couldn't agree more, and that is why I am doing it. It's the generation of bikes I was hoping to one day have in my garage for a good old fashioned project.

The guys on the Ninja forums know since I've been there a long time, but for me it is all about the process. Nothing is more satisfying than doing superb work, and having a superb result. Hoping to keep this around basically forever as a gem as it gets older, but I absolutely intend on really riding the absolute crap out of this bike.

Just new enough that its got the right tech, features, and design, but just old enough to be cool and unique, and even cooler that it will be in great shape soon enough! Really cannot wait to get the mechanical stuff sorted, and then to paint it up my way and really polish it up. Really interesting to see how things and layouts have changed since 2004 and nowadays. I had a brand new ZX-6R 2 years ago that I actually crashed being an idiot, but working on that bike was a totally different story from this K4. So cool to see how some things are just tried and true.

That, and I haven't had a big bike without modern tech on it, so I am looking forward to learning those finer parts of control and skill on the track.

More to come, hopefully today is the day the engine fires up again! We shall see how far I can get in the garage after work.

-Mike
 
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