I posted a few times on here a few weeks ago, starting at post 6133 back on page 409
. I am the guy who bought a beat-up, non-running NX250 which turned out to have a major problem with an intake valve, for $250. I'm also the guy who was considering transplanting the suspension from a CanAm 250, just so I could turn the NX into a little trail-rider practice bike.
Well I mentioned my ideas to a friend named Shawn (in fact the husband of the woman who sold me the NX) and he told me that he had a 1986 Kawasaki KLR600 rolling chassis (no engine, tank, seat, plastics, etc.) that I could HAVE. So I got to work.
Following is a list of the things I've done to the bike, which I privately think of as my Hondasuki KLNX250R.
Front end: From the triple clamps down, it's all KLR600. I pressed the steering stem out of the NX250 bottom triple clamp and pressed it into the bottom triple clamp of the KLR, although the NX stem was 2mm smaller in diameter so I had to machine a sleeve, 1mm wall thickness, complete with bottom "step", to make up the difference. Using the NX stem meant no worries about the bearings. Light machining was also required for the top triple clamp. I used the NX front brake master cylinder and brake line too, and bolted the line right up to the KLR caliper. I did have to tig weld in an extension to the brake line to make it longer. Also made some special brackets to mount instrument cluster and key-switch. Of course the bike also now has a 21" front wheel (although the tire is pretty worn out). Total cost: about $30 for KLR front brake pads.
Handlebars: Aluminum, from a Suzuki RM something or other. Free from Shawn. New Scott grips from Cycle Gear. Old mirror from some previous project. Total cost: $13 for the grips.
Front fender: leftover from my Honda XL600R project, painted blue. Cost: $8 for fancy plastic spraypaint.
Seat: From eBay. Needs to be recovered. I bought navy blue vinyl for the job, but haven't done it yet. Cost: $52 for seat and vinyl.
Footpegs: Swapped on the KLR footpegs, which are nice dirt-bike style. Easy bolt-on job, no mods required. No cost.
Rear fender: Piece of junk that was on there before, but I did re-position it higher up to fit with the seat better. Should probably be replaced one day. No cost.
Rear end: The tire from the KLR was basically brand new, as well as being a 17" rim. Too good to pass up. I decided the easiest way to use the back tire was actually just to use the swingarm from the KLR too. And, the swingarm is aluminum and pretty cool looking. A fair amount of ingenuity and machining was required to make it work. Lots of swapping of parts from both bikes and machining of new parts to make the swingarm pivot area solid and functional. I also had to modify the NX brake pedal to get it to fit in there between the swingarm and the frame. I also had to shorten the cable which goes from the brake pedal back to the brake arm, which was not super easy because it's a cable instead of a piece of solid round steel, like on the NX. The KLR was missing the brake arm, so I had to get that on eBay. Also had to buy brake pads. The original NX chain fit right on! Total cost: about $50 for brake pads and arm.
Rear suspension: Got a GSXR 750 shock from eBay for $22 shipped. There were cheaper ones, but this one looked good. The fit is not really plug 'n play. The top mount of the GSXR shock is 5mm wider than the NX, so the the little angled support arms on the NX (that go from the rear engine mounts up to the shock) need to be machined. Specifically, 2.5mm needs to be removed from the inside face of the top boss on each of these arms. The bottom fits fine. As many others have noted, this shock is not compatible with the stock airbox, which was no problem for me as I put on a UNI foam pod. However, it's also not compatible with the stock exhaust, which is something I do NOT remember reading. (Maybe I missed it). I also made new connecting arms to replace the "wishbone" connecting arm from the NX, near where the shock connects to the swingarm. I needed to do this because the KLR swingarm is configured differently, and I took the opportunity to make the link a bit shorter and get myself some more height in the back. Cost: $22 for the shock.
Exhaust: Once I realized I couldn't bolt the stock exhaust back on with the GSXR shock in there, I rooted around in my parts pile and found an old stainless supertrapp. I cut the bit of pipe off the original muffler (the part where it attaches to the header) and did a caveman job of welding the stainless muffler directly to it. I then totally reconfigured the mounting tabs from the supertrapp to mate up with all the mounting points on the frame where the original muffler used to be supported. The supertrapp had no baffle discs or rear cover, so I made those. No cost.
Kickstand: Extended by about 2 inches. No cost.
I've done a few other small things here and there, like re-routing cables and such, but that's the main stuff.
So let's see, the total cost is.....
(I'm curious too!)
$425.00. Not too bad. I haven't titled it yet. Not sure if I will. Shouldn't be a problem though, as the frame VIN and the engine number are unchanged, and that's all they care about in New Mexico. Ahhh, gotta love New Mexico!
I will do a few other things as time goes by, like add some "wings" to the fuel tank to protect the radiator, re-cover the seat, maybe add a headlight, and get into the head to deal with that problem valve (but only if I have to!!). For now it runs fine, and is lots of fun. And I don't mind dropping it!! (Although I haven't yet...)
Here it is:
If anyone wants close-up pix of anything, just ask.
Oh, and also... I've got a pile of parts from the NX that I don't need, such as: both sides tank fairings, headlight fairing, headlight, headlight mounting bracket, front fender, forks, complete front wheel, triple clamps (minus stem), speedo cable, complete rear wheel, rear shock (ooh, I bet that's a hot item!), swingarm, seat-pan (no foam or vinyl, plastic pan only), airbox, and maybe some other stuff. Fairings are decent, a few cracks and scuffs. I'll post an ad in the flea market one of these days, or PM me if you want something.