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Offline Jasper

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Gearing - Z900 - version 2.0
on: April 10, 2018, 01:34:19 AM
Hi guys

The Z900 is a nimble, smooth powertrain pulling away producing massive torque through-out the rev-range in a silky linear fashion. The stiff chassis, steering and happy lean-in makes the Z900 a joy to ride. Even looks are great. I am a very happy owner if not for one major flaw:

 - the short close-ratio gearbox 

The gearbox is so damn short that the Z900 pulls easily from 25 mph in 6th gear. Reaching 50 mph the engine starts to feel strained rev'ing close to 4000 rpms and going a mere 75 mph will certainly turn you deaf years before your time at some 5000 rpms while spending your youth filling the beast with gas and applying for loans covering the wear and tear of the rev happy engine. Well, you catch my drift  :087:

And pulling away from any traffic light is a drag. Because the short gearbox will sooner than later grab your attention looking for a 7-8-9th gear having reached 6th gear halfway before having crossed the traffic light. I know, I know. The FZ-09 is even worse  :038:
 
Kawasaki calling the 6th gear an overdrive is an oddity if not a design flaw.

But there is a cure if you like to drive with style at high speed silently breaking wind when overtaking  with few revs :001:

Transform your Z900 into a long legged bastard easily hitting 191 mph (www.gearingcommander.com)  leaving everything in the dust just by changing the gearing. I did it and wont look back.

The good folks at MC Grden in Slangerup (local dealership) transformed my misery within an hour fitting the Z900 with new sprockets (17/41). Standard is 15/44. No need for extra chain links. Kept the 525 standard chain. Price all included $175. Dirt cheap for a much needed upgrade.

The upgrade has transformed my Z900 into an animal. Potent in every gear now. Not just roaring. Still rev happy but with style. Humming along say 55 mph in 6th gear with few revs, one gear down, twitching the throttle slightly overtaking traffic with a whisper. Thats style  :018: Two gears down if you want to send a roaring message from a Kawasaki done right  :164:

Riding the Z900 feels so much better and complete after changing sprockets. Now the gearbox is my friend and a real tool. Picking the right gear in any situation is easy now as each gear has become so much longer - backed up by the potent engine of the Z900 that I can stay in minor gear as the dynamic range of each gear has increased lots.

Did I mentioned the better fuel economy? I should have  :305:

Each to his own.

Cheers

Offline mininsx

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Re: Gearing - Z900 - version 2.0
Reply #1 on: April 10, 2018, 01:53:09 AM
The short gearing was one of the minor things that I had trouble getting used to. I caught myself looking for seventh gear, but I wouldn't consider it a flaw, it's just different. I've had bikes that were "screaming" at 60 mph, and I've had bikes that would do 60 in first gear. The beauty about chain drive is, if it's a problem it's easily fixed.  :821:

Offline Jasper

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Re: Gearing - Z900 - version 2.0
Reply #2 on: April 10, 2018, 01:59:08 AM

Offline RobZ900

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Re: Gearing - Z900 - version 2.0
Reply #3 on: April 10, 2018, 01:45:23 PM
What effect does that have on the displayed speed? I know that speedometers usually lie a little bit, i.e. 80mph is usually more like 74mph. Have you checked the discrepancy between the 2 since changing the gearing?

Personally, I dont mind the short gearing, I actually quite like the on tap power regardless of which gear/what revs youre at, though I do find 1st to be a bit too short.
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Offline Scim77

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Re: Gearing - Z900 - version 2.0
Reply #4 on: April 10, 2018, 03:23:01 PM
For those wanting to retain the rubber cushioning on the front sprocket, JT Sprockets seem to have it covered in either 15, 16 or 17 tooth versions :-

http://www.jtsprockets.com/catalogue/sprocket/JTF1537RB/

The 17 tooth with a 44T rear would required moving the rear axle 0.3" forward, which might be a close call. The 16T would fit easily.
Who in their right mind would design a vehicle that falls over when it stops?

Offline Jasper

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Re: Gearing - Z900 - version 2.0
Reply #5 on: April 13, 2018, 04:22:34 AM
@ROBZ900

I did two test runs checking the speedometer's accuracy after the gearing and the discrepancy between my GPS and the spedometer is 4.25 %: the speedometer is showing eg. 90 km/h when the GPS states 85 km/h.

Someone provide us with numbers for the z900 with stock gearing  :002:

Offline Jasper

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Re: Gearing - Z900 - version 2.0
Reply #6 on: May 05, 2018, 12:53:35 AM
Hi folks

Been riding last two weeks almost every day and still very happy with the 'upgraded' gearing.

First week I did some high speed freeway driving, some short trips and some drifting along with the general traffic - 90% of the time in 5th and 6th gear - drove 318 km - filled the tank with 15,98 liter of gas => fuel consumption 19,9 km/l.

Second week of driving was all about commuting and overtaking if possible - still most part of my driving was in 6'th gear - drove 312 km - filled the tank with 15,38 liter of gas => fuel consumption 20,29 km/l  :305:  :305:

Taking the fuel economy higher will counterfeit the purpose of the Z900 and my being  :001: Reaching 20 km/l and still having fun is very satisfying  :152:

Offline MZ900

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Re: Gearing - Z900 - version 2.0
Reply #7 on: May 05, 2018, 05:44:02 AM
*Originally Posted by Jasper [+]
Hi guys

The Z900 is a nimble, smooth powertrain pulling away producing massive torque through-out the rev-range in a silky linear fashion. The stiff chassis, steering and happy lean-in makes the Z900 a joy to ride. Even looks are great. I am a very happy owner if not for one major flaw:

 - the short close-ratio gearbox 

The gearbox is so damn short that the Z900 pulls easily from 25 mph in 6th gear. Reaching 50 mph the engine starts to feel strained rev'ing close to 4000 rpms and going a mere 75 mph will certainly turn you deaf years before your time at some 5000 rpms while spending your youth filling the beast with gas and applying for loans covering the wear and tear of the rev happy engine. Well, you catch my drift  :087:

And pulling away from any traffic light is a drag. Because the short gearbox will sooner than later grab your attention looking for a 7-8-9th gear having reached 6th gear halfway before having crossed the traffic light. I know, I know. The FZ-09 is even worse  :038:
 
Kawasaki calling the 6th gear an overdrive is an oddity if not a design flaw.

But there is a cure if you like to drive with style at high speed silently breaking wind when overtaking  with few revs :001:

Transform your Z900 into a long legged bastard easily hitting 191 mph (www.gearingcommander.com)  leaving everything in the dust just by changing the gearing. I did it and wont look back.

The good folks at MC Grden in Slangerup (local dealership) transformed my misery within an hour fitting the Z900 with new sprockets (17/41). Standard is 15/44. No need for extra chain links. Kept the 525 standard chain. Price all included $175. Dirt cheap for a much needed upgrade.

The upgrade has transformed my Z900 into an animal. Potent in every gear now. Not just roaring. Still rev happy but with style. Humming along say 55 mph in 6th gear with few revs, one gear down, twitching the throttle slightly overtaking traffic with a whisper. Thats style  :018: Two gears down if you want to send a roaring message from a Kawasaki done right  :164:

Riding the Z900 feels so much better and complete after changing sprockets. Now the gearbox is my friend and a real tool. Picking the right gear in any situation is easy now as each gear has become so much longer - backed up by the potent engine of the Z900 that I can stay in minor gear as the dynamic range of each gear has increased lots.

Did I mentioned the better fuel economy? I should have  :305:

Each to his own.

Cheers

Hi, i did change rear sprocket minus 3th on my previous GSR600, for the exact same reason. And it was a comfy ride, with longer gears, i was able to cruise at 3rd or 4th gear in the city without stress. But had to shorten the chain.  A downside of this was - hardly reaching top end speed if it windy outside.
So as i understand you correctly with 17/41 you dont need to cut the chain? What about the top end speeding? Do you manage to do a wheelie on the 2nd gear?

Thanks
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Online ras

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Re: Gearing - Z900 - version 2.0
Reply #8 on: May 05, 2018, 09:16:15 AM
I went from a 15 in front to a 16 with stock rear. I feel the the couple hundred rpm drop in a good way. She still comes up in second as well. I think I am going to put a 41 on and see what difference that makes. My thoughts are the 9 has plenty of smooth torque to pull it
Last Edit: May 05, 2018, 09:17:58 AM by ras
2017 Z900

Offline Jasper

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Re: Gearing - Z900 - version 2.0
Reply #9 on: May 05, 2018, 03:20:31 PM
No need to cut the chain going 17/41, but you should know the rubber cushioning had to go. In order to keep the rubber cushioning you should go 16/41 which would probably fit most z900 riders better as the gearing 'jump' wouldnt transform the driving experience as much.

As stated I'm real happy with my 17/41 decision as it provides me with an option picking the right gear in any situation. Honestly, I don't feel having that option from the original low geared gearbox close-ratio design.

According to www.gearingcommander.com > 307 km/h should be possible with the 17/41 sprockets  :034: I doubt it but some solid +280 km/h could be in reach  :164: