Kawasaki ZRX KYB shocks on ’04 Thruxton

I spent some time recently searching for a new set of shocks for my Thruxton. I’ve made a number of performance upgrades but I’ve kept the stock shocks in place even though they’re pretty crappy. There’s a lot of options for this upgrade so hopefully my experience will be useful to someone out there weighting the same decisions.

First a shot of the stock shocks before I removed them. Notice the corrosion showing on the bottom. Luckily it was from the bolt, not the mount.

First I tried used set taken of KYBs taken from a Kawasaki ZRX 1100. These are a pretty common upgrade for Thruxtons even though the ZRX is much heavier. In the end the reports I’ve read indicated the ride was nice if a bit stiff.

The shocks were the right size but the bottom bushings that came in the shocks were the wrong size. Not a hard fix since the stock shock bushing were easy enough to knock out with a mallet and socket. After fitting these in the KYBs they were easy enough to mount on the bike now that I’ve got a lift. Here’s a shot of the bushings taken from the stock shocks, and the KYBs mounted. Check out the super nice dress-up bolts I got from Joker Machines too.

They look really slick but unfortunately I couldn’t keep them. The coils on the KYB shocks are significantly wider than the stock Thruxton shocks. This came into play when I tried to fit my exhaust back on as the final step. I’ve got a set of Predators from British Customs and these cans are just too wide to fit over the ZRX shocks. Damn.

I really like these shocks and I thought about getting a new exhaust to fit over them. Then I remembered how I love the sound from the Predators so I’m still searching. I picked up a set of Icons and I’ll post about that disaster next.

2 thoughts on “Kawasaki ZRX KYB shocks on ’04 Thruxton

    1. I had these things back up on ebay pretty quick. Lost a few bucks on them but I got back enough to cover the Icon 7614s that I bought instead. The Icons aren’t bad but I really had my heart set on the KYBs mostly because the piggybacks looked cool.


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