Bike of the Month Dec 2010.
Owner: Chuck Margiotta, USA.
Chuck Margiotta's KZ1000R2.
The year was 1991. After calling many Kawasaki dealers and asking if they knew whom they sold their KZ1000R’s to, I was able to locate this bike from the original owner. I made the trip from Philadelphia, PA to Long Island, NY. 100 miles one-way and 2 hours later I owned this bike. The owner started the bike, and said, “Do you want to ride it?” I replied, “NO”, proceeded to hand him the money he was asking, and then loaded it into the back of my Dad’s truck. I was headed for home with a big smile on my face, and did not want to give him the chance to change his mind. I now finally owned an original, 1983 KZ1000R2 after years of searching for the rite one.
I started to clean the bike up, and figure out what I wanted to do to it. At the time I really wanted to make this bike into a S1 Replica, but the unique parts needed were unobtainable at the time. Back then there was no internet, and all parts were sourced and purchased over the phone. I made many phone calls, and eventually began ordering many parts.
My first modifications were Dunlop tires, Works Performance Shocks and braided brake lines to enhance the ride. Next was a steering dampener and fork brace to further improve the handling. After that I decided to order a JMC swing arm from England.
This took 1 year to get and many frustrating phone calls to England. While waiting for the swing arm, I had my close friend Al machine me rear sets and foot pegs. In order to make this bike stop like a super bike,
I ordered Performance Machine 4 piston calipers for the front and a 2-piston caliper for the rear. Al again helped me out by machining the caliper mounts.
The front mounts are pretty straightforward, but the rear mount is a true work of art. One solid piece of aircraft aluminum milled in the center with spacers built into it. The original owner had installed 29mm Mikuni Smoothbore carb's, but they were too small for this 1000cc motor.
I swapped them for a set of 33mm’s, and the correct push pull throttle was installed. Another friend Pete, a professional race motor builder set the carb's up on a DynoJet Dyno and they carbureted beautifully. The bike idles perfectly and the throttle response is awesome.
Finally the swing arm arrived and again Al machined some more stuff for me. He made me a chain guard, a chain adjuster tool, and machined bolts for the shocks and chain guard because of fitment issues.
A new gold RK chain and PBI aluminum rear sprocket were installed at the same time. A sealed Yuasa battery took care of any acid spilling when the front wheel left the ground.
I personally detailed many parts on the bike such as polishing the triple clamps, front forks, front and rear caliper mounts, and the rear sprocket.
Next I had the oil cap, breather top, oil pan, fork brace and a few bolts here and there chromed. After one of the stock pick-ups went bad I installed a DYNA coils and ignition setup. After spending over $10,000 I was very happy with how the bike came together and I deemed it complete in 1993.
I owned 4 other bikes at the time, but I enjoyed every second of the 2000 miles I spent riding my ELR the most. The bike won 1st place at multiple shows, went on many Sunday morning cruises, and together we met a lot of great people over the years before I stopped riding in 1997. The bike was then properly stored in my climate-controlled garage to not see the light of day until recently. It is now 2010 and with the bike still under my possession, the way I originally built it.
I decided to install a brand new Kerker KR exhaust that was professionally heat coated. The original exhaust had a tiny dent on the bottom like most others, which always disturbed me.
Along with the bike I still have the 2 original keys, the owners manual, and most of the original parts that came with the bike when I purchased it 19 years ago.
Sadly I must say that I will not ride this bike again due to health issues. Recently my son said to me, “Hey Dad, lets get your Green bike professionally photographed”. I replied, “You know that’s not a bad idea.” So out of storage it came. I thought to myself, “Finally I might be able to get Bike of The Month honors.” I hope you guys enjoy seeing the bike, and reading my story.
I’ve enjoyed owning this for many years, and after the photo shoot I finally feel like I’ve completed the journey and met the goals I originally set for the bike. You know what they say, “Let the Good Times Roll”. After riding one of these KZ1000R’s, I knew exactly what Kawasaki meant, and I’m sure many of you share the feeling as well.
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