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Just Got a 2018 N1K to Replace My 2012

This is a discussion on Just Got a 2018 N1K to Replace My 2012 within the 5th Gen Z1000/Ninja 1000 forums, part of the Kawasaki Z1000, Ninja 1000, Z800, Z750 & Z-750S category; Originally Posted by rcannon409 The fueling is different, and that can change vibration patterns, but that balancer has been there all along. It is a ...

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Thread: Just Got a 2018 N1K to Replace My 2012

  1. #16
    Up-And Comer Pltzr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rcannon409 View Post
    The fueling is different, and that can change vibration patterns, but that balancer has been there all along. It is a part of the original design, dating back to the 2010 z 1000 that the ninja was based on.
    Key word is "secondary." The N1K always had a balancer, but for the 5th gen another one was added. At least thats what the Kawasaki guys told the press at the 5th gen release

  2. #17
    Supreme Being rcannon409's Avatar
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    No, it really did not change.

    I hear what you are saying. The way it was worded was confusing, and misleading. Deceptive, to be real honest about it. I would have never let a press update go out the way that was worded like that. If you did not know the bike, before, it would have sounded like a new addition, but it was not. They mentioned several features in that strange context. Thanks! Now it will drive me insane until I find it...LOL

    The concours 14 has that secondary balancer, but the ninja is as it always was. It would require a new motor design to add a secondary balancer, and it would be shown on the parts breakdown, and its not.

    Heres the 2017: https://www.genuinekawasakiparts.com...ebc9f/balancer and here's the 2010 z 1000

    https://www.genuinekawasakiparts.com...99763/balancer

    The article mention things like, "new single shock rear suspension derived from the zx10, new seat, 1043cc engine, LED lighting, secondary balance shaft, 300mm front brakes...."

    It was in a context like that. You could see that the lights were a new feature, as was the seat, but the rear suspension and brakes were there all along, as was the engine.

    Do you remember where you saw it? I feel like it was just before the bike was released? Late 2016, maybe?
    2012 Ninja 1000 all green - Brembo 330mm rotors - AK20 fork cartridges -Penske shock-slipper -Ivans reflash...Leo Vince slip on and Arrow header

  3. #18
    Up-And Comer Pltzr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rcannon409 View Post
    No, it really did not change.

    I hear what you are saying. The way it was worded was confusing, and misleading. Deceptive, to be real honest about it. I would have never let a press update go out the way that was worded like that. If you did not know the bike, before, it would have sounded like a new addition, but it was not. They mentioned several features in that strange context. Thanks! Now it will drive me insane until I find it...LOL

    The concours 14 has that secondary balancer, but the ninja is as it always was. It would require a new motor design to add a secondary balancer, and it would be shown on the parts breakdown, and its not.

    Heres the 2017: https://www.genuinekawasakiparts.com...ebc9f/balancer and here's the 2010 z 1000

    https://www.genuinekawasakiparts.com...99763/balancer

    The article mention things like, "new single shock rear suspension derived from the zx10, new seat, 1043cc engine, LED lighting, secondary balance shaft, 300mm front brakes...."

    It was in a context like that. You could see that the lights were a new feature, as was the seat, but the rear suspension and brakes were there all along, as was the engine.

    Do you remember where you saw it? I feel like it was just before the bike was released? Late 2016, maybe?
    I can't remember where I saw it but this May 2017 Cycle World review https://www.cycleworld.com/2017-kawa...-review#page-2 says "A secondary balancer geared to the crankshaft has been added to reduce vibration." But with the internet, who knows what is true & what is BS. All I know is that my 2018 is a lot smoother than my well maintained 2012. But then again, maybe I abused the 2012 too much since I like to keep the revs up high and use engine braking as much as possible. Maybe that's why the 2012 isn't as smooth

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  5. #19
    Supreme Being rcannon409's Avatar
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    I remember that, and I'll bet they wrote that based on that info we saw......That first briefing, or whatever it was. I wish they had dated that article as it would offer some sort of a timeline to look for.

    Was it this release? They mention the balancer, but not really in the "new" column.

    https://www.kawasaki.com/Press/Relea...Ninja-1000-ABS
    2012 Ninja 1000 all green - Brembo 330mm rotors - AK20 fork cartridges -Penske shock-slipper -Ivans reflash...Leo Vince slip on and Arrow header

  6. #20
    Rising Star chdrummerdude's Avatar
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    The 2017+ Ninja 1000 is an amazing bike. There are so many little advancements over the previous gen that makes considering the 2017+ a very worth while upgrade. The headlights alone are one of the main reasons I urged my dad to go with a 2017 over a 2016.

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  7. #21
    Supreme Being kenors's Avatar
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    In MCN's review of the '17 Ninja they commented the annoying buzz in earlier models was gone. I've seen it in a few other reviews as well. "New" balancer shaft or not they seem to have fixed one of the things on my list.

    edit: Actually two. Higher on my list was the wimpy headlights. Kudos for the new LEDs. Hope they kept the same alternator so now I have more power for my heated gear! And it's something new you can actually SEE. Saw one on the road a couple weeks ago on a dreary day along the coast. Huge improvement. Side by side my '14 Ninja's headlight looked like an old D-cell flashlight.
    Last edited by kenors; 09-19-18 at 03:37 PM.
    2014 Ninja w/bags, Motowerks lowered pegs, Sargent Seat, Vstream tour screen, Givi XS306 tank bag, WOLO BadBoy, Aerostitch Roadcrafter.

  8. #22
    Up-And Comer Pltzr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rcannon409 View Post
    I remember that, and I'll bet they wrote that based on that info we saw......That first briefing, or whatever it was. I wish they had dated that article as it would offer some sort of a timeline to look for.

    Was it this release? They mention the balancer, but not really in the "new" column.

    https://www.kawasaki.com/Press/Relea...Ninja-1000-ABS
    That wasn't the release, but it's the best I've seen. Good point, if you read it carefully, the balancer is not listed as NEW like
    the other improvements.

  9. #23
    Supreme Being rcannon409's Avatar
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    Yes, but I saw your point, too.....Its not listed as a carryover, or "In addition to....." Its presented as if it just appeared, in many of the articles.

    Still that original release was misleading. When I sa wit, and it mentioned the "new" shaft, i figured i had to trade. My Concours 14 has a real "secondary" shaft, and that bike is almost vibration free, at every rpm. Especially after Ivans reflash. His fueling and timing changes, on that bike, are maybe even better than on his Ninja reflash....if not better, equal to.

    My guess is thats what change on the 2017. With over 7 years to develop that engine, no doubt they have been able to get the fueling and timing closer to perfection, and stay legal. Based on what Ive felt, with Ivans work, thats a massive part of the bikes vibration. Sounds crazy, but is 100% true.
    2012 Ninja 1000 all green - Brembo 330mm rotors - AK20 fork cartridges -Penske shock-slipper -Ivans reflash...Leo Vince slip on and Arrow header

  10. #24
    Supreme Being kenors's Avatar
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    Guess we weren't the only ones sucked into the hype of a "new" balance system. As I said before, whatever they did, it's smoothed out now and that's a good thing.

    auto.ndtv.com 2017 Ninja review:
    "The 2017 Kawasaki Ninja 1000's engine may be the same, but now features a secondary balancer on the crankshaft, which is said to eliminate excessive vibration."

    Cycle world 2017 Ninja 1000 review:
    "A secondary balancer geared to the crankshaft has been added to reduce vibration,"

    Sport Rider 2017 Ninja 1000 review:
    "The Ninja 1000 ABS features many enhancements that allow for a smoother engine feeling and less vibration to the rider. One major feature is the secondary balancer on the engine crankshaft, which eliminates excessive vibration."

    bikewale.com 2017 Ninja 1000 review:
    "The bike has been made more refined as Kawasaki has added a secondary balancer to the crankshaft."

    edit: The more important thing to me is that when the actual ride tests came out they all commented that the engine vibes had been quelled and it was now smooth. Although, one review I read phrased it something like "the buzz that gave the engine character have now been removed." We're kinda arguing verbal semantics here when when the end result is what most folks really care about. And, truth be told, with the addition of gel grips, +1T on the countershaft sprocket and putting the bar end weights back on, the only time I find the vibes annoying is when the mirror images are fuzzy.
    Last edited by kenors; 09-20-18 at 11:38 AM.
    2014 Ninja w/bags, Motowerks lowered pegs, Sargent Seat, Vstream tour screen, Givi XS306 tank bag, WOLO BadBoy, Aerostitch Roadcrafter.

  11. #25
    Supreme Being rcannon409's Avatar
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    Kenors, yes...I remember seeing those, too.

    There was some sort of press release, from Kawasaki, right when the updated Ninja was announced. A few days later, the magazines wrote those introductions. That release listed most of the prominent features of the "new" ninja, but made it sound as if they were just added. I remember them talking about the front brake calipers and 300mm rotors , single shock rear suspension, and that balancer.....items that were already there.

    However, they also mixed in items that were new, like the fairing , seat, and the cornering abs.

    I suppose they really, technically, were not being deceptive. If a person considered this "new" ninja to be 100% new, then it did feature these items...no argument there. But, if the bike was considered "updated", then a few of those features carried over. If a person were to read that release, and was not familiar with the bike, those features sounded "new".

    We have to find that release.....

    It was formatted like this one, but this one appears to be more straightforward.

    https://www.kawasaki.com/Press/Relea...Ninja-1000-ABS

    But, the truth is, if we go back to the 2010 z 1000, thats when the balancer was added. That is the first test that popped up, but its mentioned in all of them.



    https://www.thoughtco.com/2010-kawas...review-2399603
    Last edited by rcannon409; 09-20-18 at 08:35 AM.
    2012 Ninja 1000 all green - Brembo 330mm rotors - AK20 fork cartridges -Penske shock-slipper -Ivans reflash...Leo Vince slip on and Arrow header

  12. #26
    Up-And Comer Pltzr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kenors View Post
    In MCN's review of the '17 Ninja they commented the annoying buzz in earlier models was gone. I've seen it in a few other reviews as well. "New" balancer shaft or not they seem to have fixed one of the things on my list.

    edit: Actually two. Higher on my list was the wimpy headlights. Kudos for the new LEDs. Hope they kept the same alternator so now I have more power for my heated gear! And it's something new you can actually SEE. Saw one on the road a couple weeks ago on a dreary day along the coast. Huge improvement. Side by side my '14 Ninja's headlight looked like an old D-cell flashlight.
    Kenors, the 2017 - 2018 service manual for the N1K says maximum output of the alternator is 14V - 24.3 A @5000 rpm. Guess that gives 340 watts total

  13. #27
    Up-And Comer Pltzr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kenors View Post
    In MCN's review of the '17 Ninja they commented the annoying buzz in earlier models was gone. I've seen it in a few other reviews as well. "New" balancer shaft or not they seem to have fixed one of the things on my list.

    edit: Actually two. Higher on my list was the wimpy headlights. Kudos for the new LEDs. Hope they kept the same alternator so now I have more power for my heated gear! And it's something new you can actually SEE. Saw one on the road a couple weeks ago on a dreary day along the coast. Huge improvement. Side by side my '14 Ninja's headlight looked like an old D-cell flashlight.
    Kenors, the 2017 - 2018 service manual for the N1K says maximum output of the alternator is 14V - 24.3 A @5000 rpm. Guess that gives 340 watts total

  14. #28
    Newbie OCLandspeeder's Avatar
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    I realize it's been 6 months into 2019, I would like to insert my opinion of the latest and greatest versus the older bike.

    Yes the new bike is smoother. But not a whole lot more. It's not glass smooth. It definitely still has strong vibes above 7k RPM.

    The biggest difference I can easily tell is the older, non-ABS/TC bikes have a more immediate response to throttle inputs. The newer bike has a smoother, kind of "softer" response to throttle inputs. That's definitely Kawasaki fine tuning right there. The older bikes are more raw, while the newer bike feels almost luxurious. The older bikes without electronics are also about 17 lbs. lighter. It doesn't seem like a lot, but I can feel it in the handling. The older, lighter bike flicks into corners easier and transitions from one side to the other with less effort. Basically, it feels sportier. I like that. And I swear the older bike also feels faster but it could just be my imagination based on its more immediate response to throttle inputs.

    I feel that Kawasaki had this formula right the first time in 2011. However, I also think the newer bike has lost some of this character. Some will like this. Some may not. As someone who came from a very refined VFR800, and someone who watched the VFR go from a sportbike with roots in racing and then slowly morph into a softer, fatter, less character laden bike over the years, the N1k is creeping in this direction in just 3 iterations.

  15. #29
    Up-And Comer Pltzr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OCLandspeeder View Post
    As someone who came from a very refined VFR800, and someone who watched the VFR go from a sportbike with roots in racing and then slowly morph into a softer, fatter, less character laden bike over the years, the N1k is creeping in this direction in just 3 iterations.
    You have a point, and what Kawasaki did to the 2019 Versys may be a harbinger of their plans for the 2020 N1K, electronic suspension that can be adjusted by an app on your smartphone

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