Classic Motorcycle Mechanics feature

Jim Patten has photographed and ridden the Proper Bikes Z1A Special for the CMM magazine feature and was extremely impressed. The feature includes restoration photographs, technical details, some background about Paul and of course a ride report.

Jim owns a standard Kawasaki Z1 himself and was stunned by the contrast between his machine and this modified example. He experienced the big leap in instant torque and power from the lowest of revs right through to full bore. The power is courtesy of overboring to nearly 1100cc , 34mm flatslide carburettors and a PMC four into one exhaust system. The seamless delivery is courtesy of endless hours of re-jetting.

In additon to having more power, the road handling is drastically improved thanks to the extensively gusseted frame and various suspension modifications that include Ohlins dampers. The wider alloy rims help an awful lot because they enable the exploitation of modern wider tyres that are obviously decades better than those available in the day. 

Visually the classic Z1 styling cues have been caricatured but certain features were rigorously retained to deliberately avoid 'streetfighter' style. Reservations include retaining standard forks and the 19" front wheel.

Details of the work can be seen in our Restoration pages.

  • Jim Patten photographs the Paul Brace, Proper Bikes special kawasaki Z1A for Classic Motorcycle Mechanics

    reporter jim patten

    Jim Patten is an experienced journalist and photographer. He has a large collection of his own classic bikes that includes a Z1.

  • Paul Brace of Proper Bikes testing the Kawasaki Z1A Special for a Classic Motorcycle Mechanics feeature

    Road test impressions

    Road testing proved the bike to be very fast and very capable. The subtle tone of the visual modications was well appreciated.


  • Paul Brace of Proper Bikes back in the day with his first Kawasaki Z1A - also modified.

    background story

    The feature includes a summary of Pauls motorcycle history which started over three decades ago. This was his first Z1A.

Contact Proper Bikes

07889 758  820

PROPER BIKES, battle, East Sussex, UK