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Discussion Starter #1
During my work-out tonight I was thinking about my old '84 Ninja and its performance figures which have been tatooed in my brain for 20 years. I can recall seeing a quarter mile figure of 10.55 for a completely stock, tweaked 1984 Ninja (slightly deflated rear tire, suspension settings, etc.). The standard quarter mile figures hovered around 11.00. I was shocked and surprised when I recollected that the new Ninja is pulling 10 second quarters. How can this be? Has technology hit the wall acceleration-wise(for a stock bike)?
Of course, top speed, general handling, etc. have improved tremendously with the new Ninja, but why such a miniscule difference in quarter-mile time over the seemingly vast 20 years?
 

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Plecostomus said:
During my work-out tonight I was thinking about my old '84 Ninja and its performance figures which have been tatooed in my brain for 20 years. I can recall seeing a quarter mile figure of 10.55 for a completely stock, tweaked 1984 Ninja (slightly deflated rear tire, suspension settings, etc.). The standard quarter mile figures hovered around 11.00. I was shocked and surprised when I recollected that the new Ninja is pulling 10 second quarters. How can this be? Has technology hit the wall acceleration-wise(for a stock bike)?
Of course, top speed, general handling, etc. have improved tremendously with the new Ninja, but why such a miniscule difference in quarter-mile time over the seemingly vast 20 years?
Not sure what you mean by stock 10 doing 10.5's. I have seen my brother run 9.8's @145MPH on a bike that had less than 300 miles on it. I think technology has come a long way from 1984.
 

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In December 1983, after over a decade of development of the original Z1, and two years after the spawning of the GPZ series, Kawasaki treated the world's motorcycle media to the launch of the GPZ 900R at Laguna Seca in America.

With a claimed 115bhp at 9,500 rpm, a top speed of around 155mph, and a standing 1/4 mile time of 10.92 seconds, the GPZ 900R had effectively rewritten the rules and moved the benchmark by which performance motorcycles were measured.

In April 1984, shortly after the start of the UK Miners strike, and the conclusion of the Greenham Common Peace protest, the machine finally became available for public consumption.

It was the first in line four powered superbike with liquid cooling, the camchain tunnel was shifted to the side of the engine, and the alternator was moved rearward, making the engine narrower and a lot easier to work on. The engine was employed as a stressed member of the frame, and a balance shaft utilised to compensate for the lack of anti vibration engine mountings.

Three months later it was earning it's spurs at the Isle of Man TT, with three privately entered machines taking the first three positions, ahead of all of the works teams. The GPZ 900R had arrived, and has subsequently benefited from a long and distinguished career.

Produced as the A1-A6 from 1984-1989 with only a few subtle changes between models, it was subsequently revamped in 1990 as the A7 model. As a consequence, the front end was changed radically with improved brakes, forks, and a 17" front wheel. There were also a few amendments to the carburation, but the engine remained fundamentally the same.

The GPZ 900R, or Ninja, as it is affectionately known in the United States, is widely acclaimed as the Grandfather of modern day sports bikes, and rightly so. As it enters it's twilight years, it can hold it's head up high, puff out it's chest with pride, and rest, secure in the knowledge that it's contribution to superbike development has been nothing short of massive.

Craig Davies
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for that, Resuscit8u! I couldn't have said it any better:) I always remember having the FJ1100, GPZ1100, GS115ES and VFR1000 guys always having a grudge against the little 900 Ninja. They would never admit it was better than what they were riding! I did switch bikes once with a guy on a new BMW(a stranger!). He was thoroughly impressed after riding it.
 

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Plecostomus said:
Thanks for that, Resuscit8u! I couldn't have said it any better:) I always remember having the FJ1100, GPZ1100, GS115ES and VFR1000 guys always having a grudge against the little 900 Ninja. They would never admit it was better than what they were riding! I did switch bikes once with a guy on a new BMW(a stranger!). He was thoroughly impressed after riding it.
I got my 84 used in 86 after I totalled my 86 Ninja 600 (I got slammed into the wall of the tunnel in Monterey) and it was scary fast back in the day. I would love to get one and restore it someday.......

I raced a guy on a GPz1100 and a guy on a GS1150ES at the same time on the road at Asilomar by the beach. Very twisty, very little sand, beat them both, so they wanted a rematch. This time into Carmel, and for 100 bucks each, winner takes all We lined up, and just before my girl yelled go, right at that instant, the 1150 dude slapped my kill switch. They took off and I quickly got my bike started again, and set off after them madder than hell. They were up from LA so I had the advantage of knowing the road better than them, and it was at night. I caught up to them and we diced it through the curves, first time I ever slid a rear tire coming out of a turn, and then I got past them just before the turnaround in Carmel. They gave a good chase the rest of the way back to the start/finish, but they didn't get past me again

We pull up to the finish which was just inside the Presidio grounds in Monterey, and my girl had the good sense to have the MPs (who were friends of mine) waiting there so there was no trouble collecting. They grudgingly paid, but then asked for a rematch. Told them this time it would cost a grand each.

They went home
 

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greenmonster said:
Theyr'e a little harder to launch with the horespower they put out these days!!!! :eek: :eek: :eek: :eek: :D :D :D
That's what I was just about to say. Due to the increas in HP and the reduction in weight they are actually a tougher motorcycle to launch in stock form than the bikes of yesterday.
 

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I'm still a little disappointed that the lightly modded Bandit 1200 I just sold for $3300 went 10.18 in the quarter and the best I've been able to get out of my 10R is 10.06.

Mike
 

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E.T. doesn't tell the whole story. E.T. is all about who can keep the front wheel on the ground. Trap speed comes from horsepower. What did the old 900 Ninja trap at? I'm gonna guess somewhere around 125-130mph at best. It being the heavy, 20 year old beast that it is now, it's clear that you could get that thing out of the hole!

Seriously though, when the 1000 Gixxer came out, a few reputable magazines were getting a high 9 out of it, stock. Now the new bikes are back into the 10's. Why? Because they gotten lighter, made more power, and are harder to launch/wheelie control. Especially considering wheelbases have shortened too. The liter bikes aren't made for drag racing. Instead, drag times should merely be viewed as a reference for trap speed, since trap speed = horsepower. If I recall correctly, the first gixxer 1K trapped about 140-141, even though it ran like a 9.9x. And now 10R's are trapping 144-145. Hey! Improvement!! Who cares what the E.T. is??!? I say E.T. is useless unless you just enjoy benchracing with your Busa riding friends with 100" of wheelbase [smilie=b:

**EDIT** I just did a quick Google and one source listed a 1985 Ninja to run a 11.01 @ 123, which, last time I checked, is SLOW. A modern 600 will trap about the same speed, albeit at a likely slower E.T., which again points to the launching/wheelie problem. We ride sport bikes, guys, not 1/4 mile missles. Power is fun, yes, but the real fun happens when the road gets all twisty.
 

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The fastest stock 900 ninja was mid 10s (the Vmax was king in 84 if I remember right). in 85 Pee Wee Gleeson turned a 10.44 on a stock Suzuki GS1150E (the wheelbase is around 61" )

and did you see the test of the 600s in one of the recent mags, the Kawasaki 636 turned a mid 10 :shock:
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Wow. I didn't realize the 636 was that fast. That's pretty amazing. :eek:

BTW, I wasn't placing 1/4 mile times as the acid test of all bikes. It just seems unusual that the manufacturers don't refine today's bikes to have blinding acceleration out of the hole. It CAN be done, no doubt. Why don't they strategically place a Pb weight somewhere at the lower-front of the engine? It wouldn't be defeating the purpose of going light, just a form of weight redistribution.
 

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Oh I think the pure 1/4 mile bike is coming. I've been waiting for Yamaha to come out with a new V-Max that will break into the low 9s stock. I figure the top speed thing has been done, and there's tons of sportbikes, cruisers etc... but a dedicated hot rod 1/4 mile bike would be fun.
 

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Plecostomus said:
Wow. I didn't realize the 636 was that fast. That's pretty amazing. :eek:
.
The 636 is very fast. When I first got my RC51 I was so proud of it and thought I could mess with 600's without much effort. Holy crap man I had reall tuff time reeling in a 636 last year.
 

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the ZX6 has been fast as hell since '95. Back then it went 10.82 @ 128mph.
 

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I had the 85 900 ninja, the 94 900 ninja and now the 10r (with a CBR900 and a hayabusa thrown in the middle) and I'd say that the 10r is definately the best of the bunch. The others were the top 1 or 2 of there day but the 10r is now the best of the bunch.
 
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