I can categorically state that a GSXR1100M motor is a step change in performance over the GSX1100 motor. I have a grin like a cheshire cat – and I’m now slightly deaf!

Before

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After

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At first glance, there’s not much difference really! Amazing how much work has gone into the engine transplant that you don’t initially notice. The “not much difference” actually pleasingly means that we still retain that aggressive stance, and the period “Land Shark” looks. I like the polished covers – as it breaks up the black – and means the engine doesn’t look out of place.

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So a couple of things are instantly apparent – apart from the fact it is loud! The motor has changed, and the exhaust is slightly shorter and holds a tighter line to the frame. Other than that, there’s not much to see!

So with a knowing eye and the knowledge of the hours Cambridge Motorcycle have put into the engine transplant, you’ll see that there is a hydraulic lever for the clutch. The fatter rear tyre. Some unpainted parts on the frame left from welding mounting points. Different carbs and some pod filters. There’s change of sprocket sizes and a 520 chain. No ignition barrel obviously as we now have the keyless ignition

On the “feel” front it actually not a drastic departure from the previous incarnation.  It’s more similar than different while riding. The riding position is the same familiar long stretch, the foot pegs just high enough to feel racy, but not cramped. Apart from the fact it is loud and instantly makes you feel like an anti-social hooligan, the engine feels smoother, less agricultural and lithe. It certainly is capable of picking up it’s skirt and at 5000rpm starts to howl and charge up to 10000 where it makes max power.

Engine-wise it’s geared perfectly well, and goes like buggery. It needs to run a few miles to loosen back up after being stood for a while, and at the moment the idle can’t make its mind up whether it’s running at 900rpm or 1200rpm. So something going on with the carbs. The joys of having a special – you need to be prepared to tinker!

The 180 section tyre has not made any discernable difference to the turn in and does not do anything stupid on the brakes. The suspension needs a bit of a twiddle up front, now feeling a little over-damped on the rebound – but we’ll wait and see before I do anything by way of adjustment. There is also probably too much preload on the rear – and it feels like it wants to skip up off a bump back there, which makes sense to me with the reduce weight.

I’ve only done about 30 miles on it and before I go any further I need to fill in some forms and sort out DVLA. I’ll try and write up a more informed view once I get a few more miles under my belt.

For now the Kat Mk2 is tucked up in my garage awaiting a Mr. Ronketti who I am sure will give his impressions over on his blog at some point in the future. Assuming it doesn’t rain this afternoon obviously!

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