A 1983 Z400J. The kind of bike your 50 year old next door neighbour commuted to work on in the early 90’s, when you were in your teens. The kind of bike you dismissed as dull, soulless, old fashioned, practical transportation. Now the kind of bike that when given the love like this one has, you would happily part exhange your girlfriend/boyfriend for. Funny how things turn out isn’t?
This build was carried out by Saverio, a graphic designer, illustrator and artist who goes under the name of “DSdesign Aerografie”. He’d previously built a brat style BMW R65 with his pals in the workshop, Forcelli Meccanica. And when Saverio found an unloved Z400 lurking covered in dust in the corner of an old garage, he realised he’d found his next project.
The idea was to create a bike that sits somewhere between brat style and scrambler. To achieve this, it went through several major operations. The whole bike was completely disassembled. The frame was shortened, various appendices were removed to clean things up, then the frame was sandblasted and painted. The same paint love was given to the rest of the bike, including the engine block. A tank was nabbed from another Kawasaki, it was adapted to fit, then airbrushed with a special paint.
The tachometer has been slung on the side of the bike, and the clock face has been changed from black to white. Apparently Saverio has even added “Kawasaki z400 brat style” onto the dials. We’ll have to take your word for it mate as we can’t see from this angle. Equally, we’ll have to work our for ourselves where you’ve managed to hide the battery. (in that little hump beneath the rear of the seat is our bet.)
The headlight was purchased from an actual flea market instead of the usual online one. The rims have been repainted, tyres replaced, new seat base made and new handlebars fitted. The handsome bell mouths were handmade, as was the silencer. Oh and the entire electrical system was rewired. In short, this build took a lot of blood, sweat and tears.
Saverio says that this bike is now reluctantly up for sale as he’s itching to get on with his next project. Now, what could it be? What other bikes did my next door neighbour use to wheel out of his garage and go to work on in 1993?
Thanks for sharing your work with us Saverio. We’re impressed.