Kwakification and Drums

I know this will make my friend Wade happy, but the Kwakification of my Suzy’s continues ! I had always been curious where places like DiscountBikeSpares in the UK or GTReiner in Germany were sourcing the mechanical seals for the GT750 water pumps. Obviously someone was making them, and while these places provide excellent service I decided to do a bit of research. Terry at Wolf Worx here in London let me take a look through a couple of his supplier catalogues and one of them (MC Distributing) listed a whole page of after market mechanical water pump seals. With that information in hand and after asking the question on a couple of boards, it turned out that a suitable seal to fit the Suzuki GT750 seal is used in several Kawasaki’s, as well as some Chinese models. As with the oil injector valves (see my previous post at this link) the Kawasaki mechanical seal with part 49063-1055 is a direct fit and the cost is reasonable so I’m happy to buy them locally. As a matter of interest, it is also made by the same supplier (NSO) who made them originally for Suzuki.  Inglis Cycle here in London were able to get the Kawasaki part in for me at a cost of slightly under $26 CDN (taxes in). Note that the part comes with a new seal face (seen below the Kawasaki part on the left side in the photo above) that is not used on the Suzuki water pump, so you do still have to refresh the metal seal face that Suzuki uses (replace it, lap it or skim it on a lathe) in order to ensure a good seal. Note also that this mechanical seal also fits the RE5 water pump and was listed under Suzuki part number 17470-31010.

Via places like eBay, you can buy cheap Chinese knock-offs of this Kawasaki seal for as little as a $1 USD ! I bought a few different ones just to see how they compared with the Kawasaki one. The one in the photo to the right cost me about $14 USD, but on close examination does not look very well made. I think it would probably work OK, but not in one of my restorations, as I prefer to only repair them once if possible. As with the Kawasaki part, it comes with a seal face which you discard as well as an oil seal that is the wrong size for the Suzuki GT750.

DiscountBikeSpares in the UK sells the mechanical seal for about $47 CDN which seemed a bit high to me so I didn’t buy one from them. Reiner in Germany sells them for about $31 CDN (a bit more than that if you also live in the EU as VAT is added) which is close to the local cost here in Canada. The seals that Reiner sells appear to be repackaged Kawasaki parts, or at least are from the same OEM supplier as they are also made by NSO and are of very good quality. I’ve used the mechanical seals from Reiner previously and I’ve never had any issues. Both Reiner and DiscountBikeSpares use the Suzuki part number 17470-31010 if you go searching for them.

So when all is said an done, I find that I now have more than enough mechanical seals on hand; likely more than I’ll ever need I suppose. On the other hand it is nice to have another small mystery solved, which I hope will help anyone else who wishes to rebuild their own water pumps !

Changing gears a bit – there is a thread on the UK Kettle Clinic board (one of the better publicly accessible ones available if you want Suzuki GT two stroke assistance) about the differences between front drum brakes. Specifically front drum brakes as used on the 1972 GT750 and GT550 J models. The part numbers for both the GT750 and GT550 front drum brakes are the same, however there appears to have been two different versions of the front drum with earlier frame numbers below about 12400 on the GT750 having a narrower front drum assembly and so requiring spacers. Later frame numbers used a different part number for the drum assembly which was wider and so did not require the spacers. Purely out of curiosity I was wondering roughly when the change happened, and so I’ve put out requests to owners having low number frames on several boards and forums. If anyone reading this has a GT750 or GT550 with a frame number below about 12400 I’d like to hear from you as to whether you have spacers installed. To make it interesting (well – at least slightly more interesting I suppose…  🙂 ) I am running a small contest which you can read about on my OJB Facebook page at this link.

And so the fun continues !

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1 Response to Kwakification and Drums

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