1997-1999 Honda CR250 – Rear Shock Rebuild Part 1: Disassembly & Inspection

Step-by-Step Showa Shock Rebuild

This is PART 1 of the Step-by-Step rear shock rebuild for a Showa KZ3P SA-1 found on your 1997 – 1999 Honda CR250.  The steps in this rebuild will also work for a 2000 -2001 Honda CR250, but keep in mind that for the 2000 – 2001 model years, Honda switched to a larger diameter shock, so parts are not interchangeable.

You can find Part 2: Shaft Assembly here, and Part 3: Body Assembly here.

Parts List:

  • Shock Oil

I have found several rebuild kits for the ‘00 – ‘01 rear shock, but I have not been able to find a complete rebuild for the ‘97-’99 shock.  However, you can still get all the OEM parts individually through Our Partner Retailers.  I prefer buying the individual parts anyway so I can save money, so It all works out! (For me).

I don’t recommend buying any parts until you know exactly what you need.

That being said, the seals, O-rings, and valve bushing were in surprisingly good shape considering the condition of the shock oil.  I ended up taking a chance and reused everything (except the oil), so I may get 10 minutes of ride time off this rebuild, and I might get 100 hours.

*This was the best option for me at the time, so if you do reuse your parts, just know that there is a risk of premature failure.

Related: Suspension Review: Race Tech Gold Shock Valve Kit

Tool List:

  • Racetech Seal Head Setting Tool
  • Tusk Seal Bullet
  • Tusk Reservoir Cap Removal Tool

*You may be able to get this rebuild done without these tools, but you run the risk of damaging a lot of parts.  I usually try to find ways to do things without special tools, but damaging anything on this shock would cost more than the tools.

Basic Tools:

  • Mallet
  • Small flat head screwdriver
  • Medium philips head screwdriver
  • Valve stem removal tool
  • Hammer
  • Punch
  • File
  • Grinder (if the shaft nut is shot peened)
  • Bench vise or assistant
  • Towels
  • Stiff bristle brush
  • Parts cleaner
  • Safety Glasses
  • Low-pressure air pump
Torque Specification:
  • Shaft Nut – 35-60 ft-lbs

Remember to inspect everything as you clean it, and replace any damaged or worn parts.

After you complete the rebuild on your shock, you will need to take it to a shop to get the reservoir filled with 150 – 200 PSI of NITROGEN. Why nitrogen and not regular compressor air? The simple answer is that air expands when heated, nitrogen does not.

Follow along with the video below!

1997-2001 Honda CR250 Rear Shock Disassembly & Inspection

Click Here To Open The Rear Suspension Specifications In A New Window

Remove the spring:

  • Back out the preload adjustment nut to release spring pressure
  • The spring plate is held on by a circlip attached to the collar.
  • To separate the collar and spring plate, place a screwdriver between the collar and the spring,
  • then hit the plate with a hammer to expose the circlip.
  • Remove the circlip, the backing plate, and the spring.
Shock Spring 1Shock Spring 2Shock Spring 3Shock Spring 4Shock Spring 5Shock Spring 6Shock Spring 7Shock Spring 8Shock Spring 9Shock Spring 10
Step 1: Clean the reservoir cap and release the air from
the bladder.
 Step 1Step 1.1
Step 2: Remove the valve stem from the reservoir cap.Step 2Step 2.1
Step 3: Remove the shock body cap using a punch and
hammer. Go back and Forth between the punch holes, so
the cap does not bind.
Step 3 Step 3.1Step 3.2
Clean and inspect the seal head.  Before we can remove
the shaft, we need to remove the reservoir to release
pressure in the shock body.
 Shock Disassembly and Inspection step 4 Shock Disassembly and Inspection step 4.1 Shock Disassembly and Inspection step 4.2
Step 4: Install the reservoir cap puller and beat the cap into the reservoir to expose the circlip.Step 5 Step 5.1 Step 5.2
Remove the circlip, install the cap puller again, and pull the reservoir cap and bladder.Step 6Step 6.1 Step 6.2
Step 5: Shaft Removal
To remove the shock shaft, begin by pushing the seal
head down to expose the circlip.
Shock Disassembly and Inspection step 7
Remove the circlip and carefully work the shaft out of
the body. Set the shock body aside and let it drain in
a warm place for about 10 minutes.
Shock Disassembly and Inspection step 8 Shock Disassembly and Inspection step 8.1 Shock Disassembly and Inspection step 8.2 Step 8.3
Clean and inspect the shock body, shaft, and valve stackShock Disassembly and Inspection step 9Shock Disassembly and Inspection step 9.1
Step 6: Remove the shaft nut
*The shaft nut will be shot peened from the factory, if it is,
you will need to grind down the nut until you can see a distinct separation between the nut and the shaft. But, if your
shock was previously rebuilt, like this one, you shouldn’t
have to.
Step 10 Step 10.1
Clean and inspect the threadsStep 11
Step 7: Transfer the valve stack to a screwdriver to
keep everything organized.
Step 12
Remove the seal head, shock body cover, bumper,
and collar. Clean and inspect.
Step 13Step 13.1Step 13.2Step 13.3Step 13.5
Step 8: Check the shaft threads, you may need to
re-pitch the threads using a small file.
Step 14Step 14.1
Step 9: Check the seal head body and seals, these
seals are still good so I’m going to re use them.
Step 15.1 Step 15
If you have any questions or anything to add, please leave them in the comments or on our FaceBook page!
97-01 Honda Cr250 Shock Rebuild Part 2: Shaft Assembly →

Keep Your ’97-’01 CR250 Running Right!

Fix Your Dirt Bike Logo


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.