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Wondering if it's feasible (and, if so, what gear/changes would be necessary/desirable) to convert my 2018 Kawi Ninja 400 KRT ABS to a "dual sport" - would appreciate responses from folks who have "been there, done that", if possible.

Many thanks, guys and gals!
 

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Wondering if it's feasible (and, if so, what gear/changes would be necessary/desirable) to convert my 2018 Kawi Ninja 400 KRT ABS to a "dual sport" - would appreciate responses from folks who have "been there, done that", if possible.

Many thanks, guys and gals!
You definitely could, but I feel like the trellis frame (Engine is part of the frame) might be dangerous for heavy off roading.
 

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Wondering if it's feasible (and, if so, what gear/changes would be necessary/desirable) to convert my 2018 Kawi Ninja 400 KRT ABS to a "dual sport" - would appreciate responses from folks who have "been there, done that", if possible.

Many thanks, guys and gals!
There may be worse ideas, but none come to mind at the moment. :)

Seriously, with enough time, talent and money anything is possible, but unless you have a burning desire to own a weirdly different bike I can't see the point. Far cheaper and easier to buy something already suited to the riding you want to do.
 
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
There may be worse ideas, but none come to mind at the moment. :)

Seriously, with enough time, talent and money anything is possible, but unless you have a burning desire to own a weirdly different bike I can't see the point. Far cheaper and easier to buy something already suited to the riding you want to do.
Thank you - just exploring the thought.
 

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It depends what exactly you want to do. @Banjoboy was using his bike for bad roads, I don't know if he did real off roading. You can certainly use it up to certain point outside tarmac roads.
 

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Wondering if it's feasible (and, if so, what gear/changes would be necessary/desirable) to convert my 2018 Kawi Ninja 400 KRT ABS to a "dual sport" - would appreciate responses from folks who have "been there, done that", if possible.

Many thanks, guys and gals!
The Z400 is much more suitable with less body work, lighter, and more upright riding position. I don't know why Kawasaki hasn't put the 400 motor in the Versys 300 yet; what are they waiting for?
It depends what exactly you want to do. @Banjoboy was using his bike for bad roads, I don't know if he did real off roading. You can certainly use it up to certain point outside tarmac roads.
I just did fire roads 'n stuff; the same ones I used to do on my FZ6 😁
Tire Wheel Vehicle Sky Plant
 

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The Z400 is much more suitable with less body work, lighter, and more upright riding position. I don't know why Kawasaki hasn't put the 400 motor in the Versys 300 yet; what are they waiting for?
I just did fire roads 'n stuff; the same ones I used to do on my FZ6 😁
View attachment 20626
I think the different frame is why there's no Versys 400 yet.

But you can get pretty close to the same ergos with the Z400, since (with money and effort) the Versys-x300 handlebars will work on a Z400 for an extra 3 inches (76mm) of bar height. It's not cheap or easy, but it is doable.

Basic parts list:
Versys-x300 handlebar
Extra stock Z400 left grip in case you can't get yours off the stock bar without destroying it
MotionPro custom throttle cables (Z400 +3" (+76mm) on both cables)
MotionPro custom clutch cable (Z400 +3" (+76mm) for stock Z400 perch/lever)
Spiegler SS brake line kit for Z400 ABS with +3" (+76mm) on the front-MC-to-ABS-unit line (they will do customized lengths up to +6" free of charge if you call them)
Some kind of open-ended bar-end hardware

Suggested: (The stock switch wiring MIGHT reach, but it'll require routing behind the top triple instead of in front of it)
Versys-x300 left control switch (same connector but different pinout, re-pin it with a jewelry screwdriver)
Versys-x300 right control switch (works as-is)
Versys-x300 mirrors (but reuse your stock Z400 mirror riser/damper thingies and slipcovers) - much wider stalks, you can actually see behind you instead of just seeing your elbows

Optional extras:
Vulcan S brake and clutch perches/levers/front-master-cylinder (if you want OEM adjustable levers. Modify the MotionPro custom clutch cable order for -10mm free length when using Vulcan S clutch lever. Has to be the Vulcan S front master cylinder bc it's also single front disc, same 1/2" bore as the 400cc bikes. The other 650cc bikes have a larger bore MC for dual front discs.)
Versys-x300 internal bar weights (for vibration damping)
Barkbusters (the custom-fit Versys-x300 kit shown in my photos didn't work well for me, the throttle cables got pinched awkwardly. I prefer the clamp placement of the BB.BHG15-01 "Universal 7/8in kit" instead, don't have pics of that yet)

Stock Z400 bars vs Versys-x300 bars
Automotive tire Motor vehicle Automotive lighting Automotive design Automotive exterior

Wood House Hardwood Building Flooring


All put together with (most of) the suggested/optional stuff. These 2 still show the the Versys-x300 barkbusters brackets that interfere with the throttle cables.
Tire Wheel Vehicle Automotive lighting Automotive tire


The clutch cable shown in this pic is from a Z900 (good length but the metal bend is too shallow and the cable hits the gauges), I didn't have the MotionPro custom cable in yet when I took this.
Tire Wheel Vehicle Automotive lighting Automotive tire
 

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The top setup had clutch/throttle cable interference problems, the bottom does not.

Z900 (non-RS) Clutch cable and Versys-x300-specific Barkbusters frames + mounting brackets
Automotive tire Motor vehicle Automotive fuel system Motorcycle Vehicle


MotionPro custom cable (Z400 +76mm) and Barkbusters universal 7/8" frames + mounting brackets
Automotive tire Motorcycle Motor vehicle Automotive design Fuel tank
 

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I think the different frame is why there's no Versys 400 yet.

But you can get pretty close to the same ergos with the Z400, since (with money and effort) the Versys-x300 handlebars will work on a Z400 for an extra 3 inches (76mm) of bar height. It's not cheap or easy, but it is doable.

Basic parts list:
Versys-x300 handlebar
Extra stock Z400 left grip in case you can't get yours off the stock bar without destroying it
MotionPro custom throttle cables (Z400 +3" (+76mm) on both cables)
MotionPro custom clutch cable (Z400 +3" (+76mm) for stock Z400 perch/lever)
Spiegler SS brake line kit for Z400 ABS with +3" (+76mm) on the front-MC-to-ABS-unit line (they will do customized lengths up to +6" free of charge if you call them)
Some kind of open-ended bar-end hardware

Suggested: (The stock switch wiring MIGHT reach, but it'll require routing behind the top triple instead of in front of it)
Versys-x300 left control switch (same connector but different pinout, re-pin it with a jewelry screwdriver)
Versys-x300 right control switch (works as-is)
Versys-x300 mirrors (but reuse your stock Z400 mirror riser/damper thingies and slipcovers) - much wider stalks, you can actually see behind you instead of just seeing your elbows

Optional extras:
Vulcan S brake and clutch perches/levers/front-master-cylinder (if you want OEM adjustable levers. Modify the MotionPro custom clutch cable order for -10mm free length when using Vulcan S clutch lever. Has to be the Vulcan S front master cylinder bc it's also single front disc, same 1/2" bore as the 400cc bikes. The other 650cc bikes have a larger bore MC for dual front discs.)
Versys-x300 internal bar weights (for vibration damping)
Barkbusters (the custom-fit Versys-x300 kit shown in my photos didn't work well for me, the throttle cables got pinched awkwardly. I prefer the clamp placement of the BB.BHG15-01 "Universal 7/8in kit" instead, don't have pics of that yet)

Stock Z400 bars vs Versys-x300 bars
View attachment 20682
View attachment 20683

All put together with (most of) the suggested/optional stuff. These 2 still show the the Versys-x300 barkbusters brackets that interfere with the throttle cables.
View attachment 20684

The clutch cable shown in this pic is from a Z900 (good length but the metal bend is too shallow and the cable hits the gauges), I didn't have the MotionPro custom cable in yet when I took this.
View attachment 20685
I raised the bars a couple inches, w/ (Chinese) ROX type risers, and didn't need to change cables; that seemed high enough to stand on the pegs comfortably. Your taller bars are better because the ROX risers are more likely to break in a drop.
The biggest short coming in using the N/Z400 off road is the 17" cast wheels; they aren't very sturdy. You'll want to convert to the Versys 19/17 spoked rims. (y)
 

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I raised the bars a couple inches, w/ (Chinese) ROX type risers, and didn't need to change cables; that seemed high enough to stand on the pegs comfortably. Your taller bars are better because the ROX risers are more likely to break in a drop.
The biggest short coming in using the N/Z400 off road is the 17" cast wheels; they aren't very sturdy. You'll want to convert to the Versys 19/17 spoked rims. (y)
I think my bar rise is a bit more than whatever the risers were you had - i never found risers that would add more than 50mm, and that last 25mm made the difference of stock-vs-extended cables/lines. I couldn't turn the bars more than a few degrees without the stock brake hose going taut and the throttle cables would bind shortly afterwards.

I'm not personally doing this for offroad use, it's for my lower back. But yeah if one wanted to use it for offroad, the Versys-x300 wheels would be the way to go, assuming the rotor/sprocket would line up and the front fender wouldn't scrape the tire (though you could probably use spacers of some kind to fix both of those problems).
 
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