1993 Kawasaki Mule UTV project

  1. jpmillermatic

    jpmillermatic Member

    Messages:
    856
    USA-NY
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    Oh, its a project alright. I did get a fair deal on it, and could tell by a close up inspection of suspension, brakes, tires, motor, etc, that I could get it running with some work done to the wiring and a carb rebuild. The wiring was the worst area, so I tackled that first and had the loom unwrapped and simplified in a couple of hours. Tracing all the breaks, rub throughs, corrosion and bad fuses was another issue and took another couple of hours to put right.

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    I found a nice looking fuse block complete with fuses on ebay. This simplified all the wiring attached to the battery terminals which seems to have each circuit added after the fact. Now, only 3 wires are going to the battery positive terminal; starter motor, fuse box, and one more for the winch.

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    2 of the wheels were in pretty rough shape and one almost got thrown in the scrap pile. but they are pricey even for used ones, so I patched them up with the welder. This worked but was not perfectly sealed, so I went out and got some tubes for them...now all is well and they are holding air.

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    I know, I know, it seems crazy to spend any time at all on a little wheel like this!

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    I am welding up the central tunnel right now. All the control cables go through there as well as a brake line, which of course was rotted through just above a big hole caused by rust.

    It should be a good project and will help with duties around the house. mainly, Ill be using it for plowing the driveway as it has all wheel drive.

    thanks for lookin.
     
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  2. frank horton

    frank horton V twins are great but 4"s rule.........

    Messages:
    1,575
    Location:
    Soon 2 B Crete
    sure beats buying new......
    just how long is the driveway can i ask........hahaha.......
    nice 1.......
     
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  3. Just by crazy coincidence, a guy a few doors down from me bought one of these over xmas & came to me because he couldn't get it started. I worked my way back from the starter as there was no power (battery was connected & charged) finding no power anywhere & found a dodgy fuse wich I changed (still no luck) so laid under it and found more fuses wich were fine & then aha ! another bigger red cable, that he had not connected up :doh:
    Anyway it fired up straight after & then he proceeded to show me what needed welding so may be worth checking your one out too. The right hand hoop behind the cab had broke all the way around the tube above the weld & also the exhaust was cable tied in place where it had broke away on the bracket + check the tab that is bolted down that holds the release bolt for the rear tipping tub.

    Dan
     
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  4. Migmac

    Migmac Member

    Messages:
    3,617
    Location:
    Kintyre. Scotland
    A fun project.
     
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  5. zx9

    zx9 Member

    Messages:
    3,757
    Location:
    South East London
    Interesting project. What engine do they run and is it a variant of one of the bike engines?
     
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  6. slim_boy_fat

    slim_boy_fat Forum Supporter

    And given the level of attention to detail you put into the pickup, a good one to follow. :thumbup:

    Keep the updates coming, please.
     
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  7. jpmillermatic

    jpmillermatic Member

    Messages:
    856
    USA-NY
    The driveway is maybe 50 meters. It seems pretty level until you try to plow it with a garden tractor. Then, anything heavier than 3-4" of fluffy white cold powder snow requires pushing out to the sides of the driveway with every push...both sides. it becomes laborious!....

    This lil 4wd unit should be an improvement.

    JP
     
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  8. jpmillermatic

    jpmillermatic Member

    Messages:
    856
    USA-NY
    Hey, Dan. Mine has (had) several issues. the front "bumpers" were pushed in towards the wheels and had to be persuaded back out. Even with heat, one of them cracked at the weld by the frame. That is all fixed. The central tunnel was the worst part so far. I just finished that up today and now can put my brake lines and cables back in place after I seam seal the welds and give it all a coat of truck bedliner material.

    Mine seems to suffer more from rot through due to sitting, age, and probably being stored in an open shed or somewhere not heated. The floors need patches, the bed is pretty rough (both from damage by a tree limb falling on it and rust), but the frame looks pretty good overall. I have not found any rotted sections yet.

    The wiring seems pretty simple after rebuilding the harness, but honestly it was a little daunting at first. I too found those fuses from underneath, then realized they were right under the seat that tilts forward!...duh!

    I had it running today and got it to idle after some massaging of the choke and gas pedal. I have discovered what seems to be a water pump leak. pretty common for these older Mules. Ill be tackling that once I get it moving around again under its own power. But first, the brake lines go back in! (smart fella, ain't I ?)

    The e-brake does work, but I would rather get the main brakes functional before trying anything like driving it around.

    JP
     
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  9. jpmillermatic

    jpmillermatic Member

    Messages:
    856
    USA-NY
    They run a 4 stroke dual piston KAF620, which Im assuming is a 620cc powerplant very similar to a snow mobile engine and drive train. our neighbor has a newer one and it really gets up and goes.

    JP
     
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  10. eddie49 Member

  11. zx9

    zx9 Member

    Messages:
    3,757
    Location:
    South East London
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  12. slim_boy_fat

    slim_boy_fat Forum Supporter

    Any plans to make a snow-blower for it....? :whistle: :D
     
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  13. jpmillermatic

    jpmillermatic Member

    Messages:
    856
    USA-NY
    A snow blower!?!...what a crazy idea. never!...well, maybe...I mean, yeah...I have a Cub Cadet snow blower That I could use......heh, heh...

    Unfortunately, it has to be a plow...our gravel driveway would eat shear pins left and right with the blower, unless I kept the thing off the ground a little...which defeats most of the purpose. but that would be very cool indeed.

    I did get the central tunnel welded up with a bit of a patchwork, but its all solid again

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    and I got the new copper brake line in place along with all the control cables and wiring harness. It all runs under a cover plate which also contains the go pedal.

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    And here is that storage box/glove compartment that I have been working on. I joggled some of the edges and welded against the joggle as opposed to doing purely butt welds. I really like the strength provided by the joggle.The open side you see is actually the bottom of the unit. it must have sat in water for most of its life. the whole bottom and all the sides were pretty well rotted out.

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    And finally the brake drum exposed. This one is a bit hard to turn, so Im taking it off to see what the brake shoes look like. Im sure everything needs a good cleaning too

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    All the components are miniatures of a full size truck...its very predictable and very old school!
    So next up will be a thourough cleaning of the brakes and drums, finish bleeding the system, which I did get started on tonight, and refurbing the central tunnel cover. I also want to get in and clean and inspect the water pump area to find that leak.

    thanks for lookin!

    JP
     
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  14. jpmillermatic

    jpmillermatic Member

    Messages:
    856
    USA-NY
    So it now moves around under its own power!....I do still have to make some adjustments to the controls as its a bit twitchy getting into gear...I think and hope that cable adjustments will put that right.

    I moved it over to the other side of the garage and lifted the bed off, flipped it over and started cleaning up the bottom surface. Fenders came off, the wire wheel came out to do a little exploratory work....and I have a few holes to patch....The paint is also very tired....

    Nice thing about this mule is it has a cab with real glass, a windshield wiper, good vision all around, plenty of potential to make a great plow unit, and will easily drag my driveway rake around. I do need to make some doors for it and am figuring on cloth material over metal frames with plexi windows.

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    The bed is pretty heavy. it took 2 of us to lift it off and flip it over.

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    and a few repair patches like this one to make up....

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    More progress to follow

    thanks for lookin

    JP
     
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  15. jpmillermatic

    jpmillermatic Member

    Messages:
    856
    USA-NY
    I decided to put the 12v circuit breaker in for the winch today. I made a standoff bracket and mounted it next to the fuse box. It was pretty easy to install and I like the fact that I can reset it if it trips. I mean, it should'nt, its rated for 100amps!...the winches can draw anywhere from 40-80 amps depending on the winch when pulling a load. Ill only be using it for the plow (That's what he says now...) so will be using it for only moments at a time. I would like to work in some downforce with the plow, but am not sure how with a winch set up. ahh, well.

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    and picked up some copper terminals for the heavy gauge wire...

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    Clean up continues with the wire harness routing, diamond plate floor and tunnel cover.....

    thanks for lookin

    JP
     
  16. jpmillermatic

    jpmillermatic Member

    Messages:
    856
    USA-NY
    finally got some time to compile a few photos of shamefully sporadic progress on the mule. I had an over abundance of paint cans and they were spilling over to the workbench surfaces and beginning to get in the way. I saw an idea for some rattle can shelves made from old gutters...I must say it worked rather well....

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    The old muffler was toast and I was curious to see what it looked like inside.....so I cut some viewing windows in it....

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    Here is the new old one I got from ebay...it was in great shape and cleaned up well. I gave it several coats of flat black....added some new gaskets and hardware and bolted it up. Its super quiet, too......

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    I cleaned up and rebuilt the clutch unit as I was having difficulties getting it into gear, even at the lowest rpms....now it works very well. very pleased with that result....

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    and finally, The throttle and choke plate and armatures were very corroded and did not work very smoothly at all. I cleaned them up and painted everything with galvanizing paint...now it comes off idle without missing a beat....

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    I should have before'd and after'd everything picture wise, but time is tight these days. The mule still needs a good battery, a bunch more body work and patching, but its getting there!

    thanks for lookin

    JP
     
  17. jpmillermatic

    jpmillermatic Member

    Messages:
    856
    USA-NY
    As things progress with getting this thing running right, I realize that sitting on 2x4s is getting a little tiresome, so its time to rebuild the seat. Its a little worse for wear.

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    The seat base is rotted from critter nests and needs to be replaced too.Ill make up a new one from some 1/2" or 3/4" plywood.

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    and the foam rubber is in serious need of repair in two big spots. Ive cut out the nasty areas and have some foam on order to replace whats missing.

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    On the tailgate front, The lower edge is pretty rotted in a few areas, ironically from wet debris getting caught behind the tailgate bedliner piece. (sat outside waaaay too long). I was going to replace the whole bottom piece, but decided on patches. A little more work here, but less chance of me distorting the panel as much. ( Im not patient enough!) I know, more irony. Patches take longer. ;)

    Im assuming that because the piece was bent by a fallen branch, it was distorted enough to let the debris in.

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    And the first patch in place ready for more refinement.

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    Frustratingly, I did get a new battery for it, but it turns out to be a bad one. How, I dont know. I think the kid helping me out that day was new and pulled an old one from the shelf instead of a new one. it looks okay, but the original box is old and dated from 2016, upon closer inspection. (I just was not thinking to check the date of manufacture in the store. lesson learned. )

    Ill get more welded up on that tailgate today. A new seat cover arrived yesterday, and I have a throttle control cover on order....little stuff, but it helps with being home this much.

    stay healthy, everyone.

    JP
     
  18. jpmillermatic

    jpmillermatic Member

    Messages:
    856
    USA-NY
    Got the throttle control plate cover today and didnt realize it was NOS!...very nice indeed. 3 rivets and it was in place. No welding, no grinding, no sanding, no painting....I guess I dont always have to work so hard....

    ;)

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    Im expecting the seat foam to come in soon, then the fun begins!

    thanks for lookin

    JP
     
  19. jpmillermatic

    jpmillermatic Member

    Messages:
    856
    USA-NY
    Got a bit more done on the storage box for the mule today. Part of my motivation is to consolidate space in the garage, and the mule is taking up too much of it!...That and Ive been staring at that storage box for weeks!....I used some galvanized sheet a buddy of mine gave me some time ago and figured it would be perfect for this application. I was going to go with spot welds, but ended up seam welding the whole thing as its at the bottom of the box, and Im sure there will always be a little moisture there...

    anyway, more welding

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    cleaned it back

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    and got a coat of everglass buttered on there...

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    Little by little.

    Im going to call the autoparts store that sold me that bad battery tomorrow and see if they are open. Its kinda far away, but if I can get it swapped for a good one, nows the time. Seat foam coming by the weekend...

    thanks for lookin.

    JP
     
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  20. jpmillermatic

    jpmillermatic Member

    Messages:
    856
    USA-NY
    I just happened to have some plywood almost exactly the right size for the seat base. I got out the skill saw and jig saw and a few hole saws and went to work....

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    It fits great and will be ready for the new foam and seat cover, which will make a huge difference in the appearance.

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    and I got some more filler on the storage box. its getting there....

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    thanks for lookin, guys.

    JP
     
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