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  1. #1
    PWCToday Newbie 09dewaed's Avatar
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    Winter Project: 1991 Kawi 650sx Clean-up

    Im going to log some info and photography regarding my 91 650sx that I picked up over the summer of 2017. This project is ongoing and will be updated as the work gets completed (projected to be finished by May 2018). I'm not calling it a restoration because I am only repairing and replacing the things that truly bug me. If I had a bigger space to work and a second ski to ride I would break this thing down the the last nut/bolt and rebuild. Until then, this will suffice.

    Date of purchase: June 2017
    Cost: $1,200 Craigslist
    Included in Sale: 1991 Kawasaki 650sx, 1994 Polaris 750SL wave runner, 1994 Double Ski Trailer with toolbox. Paperwork for all 3
    Condition of 650sx at purchase date: Starts up and runs 100%. Hydroturf was shot, foam chin pad was missing a chunk; aesthetically displeasing.
    What happened to the Polaris and trailer: I Used trailer and wave runner (after replacing the starter) for the summer of 2017 and sold the wave runner ON the double trailer for 600 dollars. The hull of the wave runner had a run in with something hard. It still ran OK; basically required full throttle in order to stay running, which none of my friends had a problem with.
    Now that I am without a trailer, I plan on using a hitch receiver jets carrier on the back of my discovery 2.

    Photos after purchase and following test ride. Both skis ran great at time of purchase. Waverunner developed an air leak in the primer so it became difficult to start. Thats the last of the info that ill share regarding the Polaris wave runner. It was fun but had to go. I needed the money for the jetski project and it made me feel good to know that I was now only 600 dollars in to this awesome running 650sx.
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    (Check out the sweet cart that I put together from a Home Depot garden cart. It is not at its weight capacity but the ski is definitely precarious to wheel around on there. It was just about the same height as the trailer so it made for easy loading and unloading. Now the ski stays on the cart until I head to the river and toss it on the hitch carrier)

  2. #2
    PWCToday Newbie 09dewaed's Avatar
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    Re: Winter Project: 1991 Kawi 650sx Clean-up

    Photo of the first time we tossed the skis in the water. I was hesitant to truly rip into the 650 because I didn't know how long it had been since it was last in the water. I did a compression test and the stand up had 150psi in each cylinder. It has the oil block off so I wasn't too concerned about it blowing up but it still made me anxious to get out there for the first time. I brought my buddy to follow me around on the wave runner just in case I broke down. That plan fell through when fish and game showed up and my buddy was without a license.

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  3. #3
    PWCToday Newbie 09dewaed's Avatar
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    Re: Winter Project: 1991 Kawi 650sx Clean-up

    I began with the graphics. Peeling off the original graphics has you feeling somewhat sad. They were applied in the factory and its cool to see a ski in original condition from this era. Unfortunately, they looked like complete crap. I used a heat gun, paint stripper, acetone, goo-gone, and a paint brush. I would heat them up, peel them back, apply stripper to the adhesive residue, let it sit for 30sec, rub it off with a shop rag, apply goo gone, and clean off the goo gone with acetone. It left the surface in great shape (in some spots). Other spots I definitely allowed the stripper to sit too long OR applied too much heat. Peeling back the Hydroturf left the adhesive and foam still attached to the hull. I actually have yet to rid the hull of that mess. I'm waiting for the new Hydroturf to arrive before I sand, scrape, and clean up what was left of the old turf mat and padding. IMG_6260.jpgIMG_6261.jpgIMG_6262.jpgIMG_6263.jpgIMG_6264.jpgIMG_6720.JPG

  4. #4
    PWCToday Newbie 09dewaed's Avatar
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    Re: Winter Project: 1991 Kawi 650sx Clean-up

    photos of the turf coming up. I used a random orbit sander and putty scraper to give myself a rough-draft. Ill use more random orbit sanding and scraping to prepare for the new turf (included in a future post)

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  5. #5
    PWCToday Newbie 09dewaed's Avatar
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    Re: Winter Project: 1991 Kawi 650sx Clean-up

    I went over the entire hull with goo gone and then followed it with acetone in order to prepare for my new graphics. I picked up IPD graphics from eBay. They had a best offer auction and was able to get the set at a discount from their normal listing of over $200. I think I paid $185. I chose to keep the # and name simple. (650 and Kawasaki) rather than a race number and my last name. The graphics were a serious challenge to put on. The product is great but these definitely demand a practiced-hand. The rear of the ski is relatively flat, and without scrapes, scuffs, or scratches. The hood was a different story. Im not gonna lie, they went on rough and I was not happy about it. The ski had some damage that required more preparation than I put in. The bumps and gouges in the hull transferred through the graphics in the form of air bubbles and creases. Again, the product is awesome, my skills were not. Again, the rear of the ski went on AWESOME and that area is what I am proud of. I tried to use a heat gun to make the graphics go on easier but it turned out to be too much heat. I should have used a hair dryer. Instead, I put them on without any heat and paid the price. I was happy to move on from the graphics and get to stapling some Hydroturf.

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  6. #6
    PWCToday Newbie 09dewaed's Avatar
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    Re: Winter Project: 1991 Kawi 650sx Clean-up

    My pole had some serious wiggle to it where it meets the hull mount. These 650's don't use bushings like other skis and the through-bolt beats up on the pole as you ride, rounding and ovaling the holes that the bolt runs through. I decide to pick up some 1 inch nylon bushings from the hardware store. I used a 1 inch holesaw drill bit and enlarged the hole on the pole so that the new nylon bushing would fit in there. Infortunately, the 1 inch drill bit did not allow for the new bushing to fit snug. The hole was too big. I used some epoxy to fill in the undesirable gap between the new bushing and the pole. My hope is that this will have enough strength to face the torque that I'll be putting on it while ripping up and down the Delaware river. The epoxy is drying as I write this post. (which reminds me that I left the shop light pointed at the epoxy to offer some heat. Otherwise the ambient temperature of 19 degrees is less than ideal for setting the epoxy.) Notice how sloppy the first side is compared to the second. I found an application tip for the second side. I used a flat headed screwdriver as an applicator on the first side. Gross. I sanded the pole down, applied duplicator scratch filler primer in 3-4 coats, then did the nylon bushing work. Now I have to wetland with 800-2000 grit before hitting it with the duplicolor perfect match Chrysler Red. I really need to build a larger, heated workshop. The propane heater works well but without insulation or a fan in the rafters im basically just heating the universe.
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    Last edited by 09dewaed; 01-14-2018 at 07:10 PM. Reason: added photos

  7. #7
    PWCToday Newbie 09dewaed's Avatar
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    Re: Winter Project: 1991 Kawi 650sx Clean-up

    the original images were from email and they remained small. I updated them with cell phone images as they are LARGER.
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  8. #8
    PWCToday Newbie 09dewaed's Avatar
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    Re: Winter Project: 1991 Kawi 650sx Clean-up

    sorry a few of my photos are sideways. Not sure why that is happening as I am uploading them in the upright position. So checkout the new hydroturf!! I used a pneumatic stapler with 1/4 inch stainless steel staples OVERTOP of the old Hydroturf. The staples did not want to sink into the plastic as well as the non-stainless staples that I had around. That pissed me off because I don't want these suckers rusting out. I just put in a bunch of extra stainless staples to make up for the fact that they didn't sink into the plastic well. I had the PSI through the roof and it didn't make a difference. Must have to do with the gun. (or the operator, AGAIN) Also included is a photo of the DAP WELDWOOD that ill be using to adhere my new mat to the hull. Ill be putting 9mm plush padding between the mat and the hull. This was 11 dollars at Home Depot. Note: the original chin padding was missing a massive chunk. Instead of fill in the chunk, lowered the surrounding foam to the level of the deepest part of the chunk pit. I used a long sawzall blade to do the work. I probably shaved off 1/2" of foam to flatten out the pit. It looks damn near factory spec.

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    Last edited by 09dewaed; 01-14-2018 at 07:18 PM.

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