I though I would share some pics of a Z1 I modified several years
ago as a winter project while living in Independence Missouri. I think it was around 1998-99....I can't remember
now, somewhere around that time.
I saw the bike parked inside a guy's garage in the neighborhood and walked up to the door and asked if he wanted to
sell it. He did and I bought it for $200.00 cash.
This was the bike to have when I was a teenager. In 1974 I was seventeen and loved the look of this bike.
It seemed to flow together, unlike the 750 Honda which I found not that pleasing to the eye.
I never did own one until several years later, life moves on and you develop other interests.
I believe the first one I picked up was in the early 90s. The typical situation where the bike is bought
new, ridden for a while and then gets parked due to lack of interest or a close call with a car, that's
sometimes enough for most to park it or simply sell it.
Anyway I was originally wanting to upgrade the brakes because I had installed a 1075 Kit and wanted more braking
I was on the internet one day and noticed what the Germans were doing to these bikes. They were installing late
model suspension, wheels and brakes on these old Zs.
When I saw what they were doing to the Kawasaki Z, I was very impressed. Looked way cool and I knew the braking
power would be much better that the stock setup. Plus the stock bicycle wide tires of the Z1 didn't really impress
me. It was time for a makeover while still retaining the flowing lines of the Z.
I found some Gixxer late model suspension components (1993)...well late compared to the 75 Z1 900 anyway.
The guy sold me the forks, swingarm and wheels off of a 1993 GSXR1100.
Quite a bit of machine work went into the build. Fabricating a bracket for the Single Shock, bushings, etc.
I actually screwed up the colors when I painted the tank and stuff. I really didn't have any color to go from.
The guy at the Kawasaki shop had a 73 and I guess it was faded! That's where I got the color, obviously it's wrong,
As stated before, I installed a Wiseco 1075 kit, also Mikuni 34 Flatslides, Dyna ignition system and
a Vance & Hines Header.
After all the work it was a fun bike to ride and some dudes who knew what it was were impressed with the look of
I have to agree, it came out great. As fate would have it, I lost my job and any interest in staying in Missouri
I sold this bike and a 1985 Kawasaki 750 Turbo that I also modified with late model suspension. A fair amount
of work went into the building of the Z1B 900. I never did complete the bike to my liking, the company I worked for
went bankrupt and I just wanted to leave Missouri for good. Started selling everything and split, jumped a plane to
Las Vegas and have been here ever since.
I actually bought a 1975 Z1B from Mike Barouch who has his bike on this website.
I'm going to leave it stock, I have a 78 KZ1000 if I get the urge to modify another big Z.
This is the Z1B that Shaun purchased from Mike Barouch.
Since the above article was written, Shaun has written to me to say that Mike has sadly passed away.