Wrenchmonkees Kawasaki Z750

Kawasaki Z750B
ONLINE EXCLUSIVE Ever heard of a Kawasaki Z970? Neither had we. But that’s the moniker the Wrenchmonkees have given their latest custom, a stunning Z750B that’s been bored out to almost a liter. It’s the pet project of company founder Per Nielsen, who wanted to build “the perfect City-Dirt tracker” with a beefed-up motor and loads of torque. According to Nielsen, “Our local engine workshop was keen on the idea of a big bore engine as well. But there are no kits or tuning parts available for these old twins, so we had to do it ourselves.” While the workshop machined out the cylinders, Wössner in Germany built new 89mm diameter pistons. The top end of the DOHC motor was ported and everything else was checked, replaced or fixed.

Kawasaki Z750B
More visible is the departure from the Wrenchmonkees’ signature monochrome look, with an orange frame and pinstriping on the tank. The exhaust pipes are attention-grabbing too; taken from a Yamaha XT500, they’re hooked up to a SuperTrapp muffler system—which has been routed to the left side, to avoid the rear brake master and sections of the wiring. Carburetion proved trickier to sort out: “The old carbs are very difficult to find new parts for, apart from gasket kits,” says Per. “I tried with a ‘standard’ Keihin CR33 upgrade, but that was far from enough. So I put on two SR/XT Mikuni TM36 flatslide carbs, with large K&N filters, and it worked. It runs very smooth, and pulls wheelies on the gas!” (I’m guessing there are a few more ponies than the 50 quoted for the original motor.) The icing on the cake comes from 19″ wheels shod with Maxxis dirt track tires, and the overall effect is taut and purposeful.

To get the full spec of this machine, you’ll have to wait for the next issue of Sideburn, “the world’s best go fast, turn left magazine”. Reserve your copy here.

Kawasaki Z750B
Kawasaki Z750B

  • elven

    Nice stripped down bike, so much work done to that old motor!
    I’d want road tyres rather than heavy dirt tyres though ;-)

  • BobG

    Great job. This is really nice. I think a thicker seat would be appreciated while still getting the right look. Well done!

  • MC_Kloppedie


  • Mike G

    I’m pretty sure I want to marry the Wrenchmonkees.

    • Kim of Copenhagen

      You’re in luck, as same-sex unions are valid here.

  • KIK


  • peter

    very nice, only the wheels don’t seem to fit in the complete of the bike, but i can’t tell you why…

  • Micah490

    Awesome. I recently bought four shit-box KZ750s; I’m building one for me, and one for my girlfriend. I really like the (what appears to be) KLR front end- it just so happens that I have one of those, too…I love the idea of taking a (what is perceived to be) worthless bike that they sold a gazillion of, and turning it into a real charmer. If only I liked Hondas, then I’d be all set. I’ve got an FZ6 front end on mine, with R6 triples, and a GS1100 aluminum swingarm (among a hundred other tasty bits). Mine will be ridden daily, though, so I’m skipping the super shiny detail stuff, and concentrating on function, as it will be getting a patina pretty quick!

    • KIK

      is patina the same as rust?

  • KIK

    its a beauty but couldn’t they have made the seat to fill the gaps behind the tank and in the rear? attention to details.

  • Nice Stuff

    Is it just me or do a couple of those pics seem like you’re looking at a (albeit finely detailed) plastic model of a bike?

    • PHB

      Nah – it looks like it is a photoshop effect like a bleach bypass – looks cool sometimes, but a little overdone in this case

  • Paulkane

    Very,Very well done. And a nice departure from the monochrome look that was becoming a caricture of itself.

    • Lerobuste

      i agree your point about their monochromic style!! It’s a littile boring..

  • florian

    sweet, as usual.

  • Awesome, dont like the supertrap mufflers but everything else is perfect. Would be a blast to ride. Wrenchmonkees are so freaken cool, im ripping off heaps of ideas for my build, nothing wrong with that?

  • Mario

    project to project surprise us again

  • Sable

    Fuck that’s awesome. A rare instance where a custom builder has actually improved the functionality as well as looks of a bike.

  • Harry Farquhar

    I love the Wrenchmonkees they always remind me of why I started riding in the first place. But did they succeed in their attempt to create, “the perfect City-Dirt tracker”? Perfection is elusive but for me it comes very close and they started with a machine that I had completely forgotten existed. And kudos for the old skool Supertrapp silencers.

  • Dpaulinjax

    I have a freind that has one of those 750 Twin Kals , Man he would love this one . Great job love the dirt track look , Nice bike .

  • iRivas

    That’s four very nice bikes in-a-row; very cool.

    • Thanks for adding to the pressure :-)

      • Dave in Kalifornia

        Just our (collective) way of keeping you on your toes, Chris.

      • bryguy9

        [email protected] I am with iRivas, you banged the last four out of the park Chris. But no pressure!

      • elven

        Keep the rideable street bikes coming !!!


      • Harry Farquhar

        Would that be a quintupete? Keep the streak alive!

  • Kerry

    “the perfect City-Dirt tracker” is the best moniker I’ve hear for bikes like this.

    What can you say other than it’s a great bike by a great team of builders.

  • david quiles guilló

    beautiful, unperfect, exciting!

  • Sexy billet hand controls!

    Curious as to whatever happens to these bikes; do the buyers ride them much, or do they suffer the fate of the art collectible? It’s a tough problem when a renowned builder like Wrenchmonkees makes something so beautiful and exclusive. It’s almost like “could you build me a crappy version of what you normally do so I won’t feel guilty actually using it?”

    Great work as usual from Wrenchmonkees, and good call on the choice, Chris.

  • Not too many parallel twin Kawasakis from the 70s, are there? I’m digging that staggered exhaust.

    • Gebeme

      Not many of the big 750s but they made a crap-ton of KZ400 & KZ440s. And there are still a bunch of them on the road.

  • Rex Havoc

    Wrenchmonkees are top of the tree for me

  • JN

    I’m certainly no stylist, but it looks like the rear wheel is about two or three inches too far back, like a drag bike or something. I know the short seat and small fender give this impression, but the rear ends up looking sort of “extended”. Just my silly opinion.

    • SF

      I have seen it “live” in their garage, talked to them, and you are right – the swingarm is extended

  • Oliver

    WOW! Nice evolution of the wrenchmonkees style. I like it – a lot!

  • Kumo

    Very nice bike. I like that one.

  • Malove

    monkees have a unique style and every new bike they make you always think ” thats probably their best built” ……. then the next monkee comes up…. ughh ;p haha

  • 1999WS9

    That adds a whole new meaning to the word “thumper”. ;^)

  • Mule

    It’s interesting to see a bike utilizing one of the 750 Kawi twins. Too bad there was never any hop-up goodies offered, but the problem was, the market was going towards 4 cylinder everything and nobody wanted any type of twin. It seems some Z-1 bits should have been adaptable to this motor, but with the weight almost the same as a Z-1 powerplant, what was the point? Is there any dyno data available or will that be in the Sideburn offering? I think “TT” pipes would make the rest of this package look much better. And run the taillight wires under the fender. Other than that,very nice!

  • grigglet

    excellent bike , like the clean looks !!!!!

  • Micah490

    When I decided to use a KZ750 for my next build, I found 4 of them in a month, at a total cost of about $150. I still know where 2 (maybe 3 ) more are, too. I’m in Albuquerque, NM. Everything is out there- you just need to know where to look!

    • Mule

      “Everything is out there” ? I consider myself to be fairly knowledgable and resourcful about this motorcycle stuff and I gotta say, I wouldn’t have a freaking clue where to go to round up 6) KZ750 twins. However, now I know that all 6 bikes that Kawasaki sold in the Unitied States all went to Albuquerque! :-)

      Actually I think I’ve seen maybe 3-4 in the all the years since they were built. In 1975, I was working in a gas station in San Diego (this was back when you pumped the gas for people when they drove up) and I had an H-1 parked there. A guy in a motorhome pulled in and we got to talking bikes. Seemed he worked at Kawasaki Headquarters in Santa Ana and said they were developing a new 750 Kawasaki twin that was gonna blow away all the other twins in AMA flattrack racing. He was really stoked about it and so was I after talking to him! That was until I saw the bike and then worked on them in a Kawasaki shop. Pretty big and heavy it seems. Although I’m up for building a project out of any bike or motor. They all have potential in my eyes..

    • Ken

      Did you get your bikes out by the salvage area in Albuqueque? My father-in-law lives out there and I remember driving by this one road that had car and motorcycle salvage yards up and down the road…

      Mule, is there any place to get a slavaged bike around SD. I’m low on funds and would like to build a bike cheap….

      • Mule

        Good question! Craig’s List has used bikes but it seems they don’t go back beyond the 80’s too often. Garage sales, Long Beach/El Camino swapmeet, Hanford Vintage meet, etc.. My best deals have always been word of mouth. “My neighbor has a……….. that you could get for $100.00! Go baby!

        Finding a big yard or lot thats filled with vintage bikes is rare, but there are a few out there. Scattered around, I’ve seen lots that have a bunch of old bikes layin’ around that look the guy was going to start a salvage yard for bikes and then lost interest. The good news is that in So-Cal and especially out in the high desert or Arizona, bikes can sit out in the open and only collect dust, not rust. Every time you travel or go on vacation in the car or truck, scan the vacant lots and old used car lots. Yes, there are bikes out there, but finding a lot filled with old bikes will probably be on a trip out to the toolies somewhere as the lack of traffic and interest allow the bikes to pile up and become available to guys like us. A lot in So-Cal in a metro area will be pretty well picked over daily.

        Last place would be a search of old shops that have crap piled up. A deal can be made in those locales if you don’t get too excited and show too much interest. If you do, you’ve just increased the value and price you’ll have to pay to buy it.

        • Ken

          Great advice! If I was back in Minny, where I grew up, it was so easy to get barn finds. I grew up in a farming community…. A friend of my dad’s got divorced once and we went out to her place and I picked up two honda dreams, a 1970ish honda coupe, couple of vespa frames…

          Think I need to talk to my buddies out in Indio. I tried Craigslist with little luck… Gotta be patient I guess.

  • pk

    I visited WM’s garage in December and saw this one in real life. Let me tell you: the photos don’t do the bike justice..! She’s a stunner…

  • Eric H.

    Again, I like this bike too!! Cool, clean and kick-ass looking! Looks really fun to ride!!

  • szymaszkiewicz

    I’ve been to Copenhagen for 3 times in my life (it’s 708 kilometers from Poznań/Poland where I live), not knowing about Wrenchmonkees! Stiupid ME! When I finish my wrenchmonkee-style 1983 GS400,try stopping me getting there!!!