Picture of How to debadge (remove decals) from a motorcycle.
I love the color of my motorcycle (Kawasaki Ninja 500r) but hate the maroon tribal-looking decals on the fairings. So I decided to remove them and here's how I did it.

*NOTE - this method works only on decals that are not "clear-coated" over. If your decals have been clear-coated over, do not use this method, it will not turn out pretty.

Step 1: Gather your tools.

Picture of Gather your tools.
You will need:

TOOLS for disassembling the fairings. Take a look at how the fairings are attached to the frame. My Ninja's fairings are screwed and bolted, so all I needed were wrenches and a screwdriver.

1 bottle of Goo Gone
1 Hairdryer
1 Exacto-type razor (I used a spare that came with a box cutter)

And an old rag/towel or paper towels for clean up.

mscearce1 year ago

Instead of a razor blade try an old popsicle stick. Heat the edge of the decal and push at it with the stick. You don't risk damaging the paint like you do with a razor blade.

D Prod1 year ago
This is extremely helpful thank you
Hasersys5 years ago
Heh, this would have came in handy a long time ago. I since do not have a ex500 anymore lol. When I did, I removed some decals to replace a farring, but they ripped lol.  My pic here is actualy a old photo of it doing a burn out belive it or not. Nice bike, they are very tough.

Next you should do a instructable on cutting down the license plate assembly. and shaving down the turn signals.

OH, also have you seen the r6 rear end swap! This one isn't the best I have seen but as you can see it gives the bike very nice lines.

thickneckarts (author)  Hasersys5 years ago
Right now, I wanna turn it into a ratbike, so I'm gonna lose the fender all together. Not sure what I'll do with the signals...
this is the method i used except i never found anything to successfully remove the residue tried all kinds of solvents but next one i do (and there is a next one) i will try to find some googone or some citrus based cleaner.

I ratified my ex500 there are some pics here:

My ex500 ended up naked. Right now I am riding a bobbed xj650 rat bike. Next the xj650 gets military ammo boxes monted as saddle bags ;)


Rd250 chopped and ex500

Yea, I like taking crappy $100-$400 bikes and making them into some thing. I rode the ex500 everyday, these bikes are TANKS. The one I had really was a tough bike. It never let me down. I bought it abused made it rideable and abused it.
thickneckarts (author)  Hasersys5 years ago
Very nice- I have my eye on a 500 for the spring!
thickneckarts (author)  shantinath10005 years ago
I love it. I'm a first time rider but I knew I would outgrow the 250 soon after I got some experience/confidence under my belt. The only drawback was there aren't any aftermarket mods for the 500 :( But I'm thinking about turning it into a ratbike so that won't matter anymore :D
Well I hope you are wrong about outgrowing the 250 b/c I just put a deposit on one.  With that said it has some decals that will have to go and I will be referring back to this  'ible often!
thickneckarts (author)  shantinath10005 years ago
I think the later model 250s have more power squeezed out of their engine than the earlier models. Plus, the 250 has a helluva a lot of mods available! I'm sure you'll love it! 
thickneckarts (author) 5 years ago
Thanks for taking a gander at my 'ible! :D
Arbitror5 years ago
Good ol' Goo Gone! I simply love that stuff! Good job on the 'ible by the way! ;)
thickneckarts (author)  Arbitror5 years ago
Thanks :D
im sorry but im not from the United States...
What is GOO GONE?
thickneckarts (author)  tepei_takamiya5 years ago
It is a citrus-based solvent that removes sticker residue and other gooey substances.
wupme5 years ago
You actually can use a heat gun, thats what professionals use to remove decals. You just gotta be carefull and dont closer then 1 feet.
clothing steamed
thepelton5 years ago
Another good solvent for removing labels is WD40.  I'm not sure how it would work on decals, but it will remove price tag goo from a nonporous surface.
kaptaink_cg5 years ago

Nice Instructable. I own a Ninja as well (check out my Instructable on creating a camera mount) 

Have you tried using WD-40 isntead of Goo-Gone?  Works very well. I actually sprayed some one before I used the hair dryer and it was able to work into the edges of the decal a bit, making it much easier to lift!