I had the KYB Gas-a-djust shocks on my '85 initially and I found them quite nice on the road and in mild off road use. But I did find they were a bit soft for the big rocks, I think they are valved for progressively stiffer response as the speed increases. But at a near stand still, I found they let the body move around too much when dropping off a big rock or similar. But yes, for most normal use they do work fine for a low cost shock, have not tried the MonoMax model.
Rancho did also come out with an improved 9000 model shock, the 9000XL. It is gas charged and they even have a remote reservoir on some models. The ride over the old 9000s is quite an improvement:
Granted they are more money that the KYBs, though.
Hi Roger, I still see your rig from time to time. I feel strongly about this shock realization, as I've been drinking the Rancho coolade for about 17 years. Started with 5000 then 9000 and the 9000x. I found all of these to be very poor designs, but I had no clue, so I kept using them.
Over the last couple of months I gone wheeling with some friends in Fj55 and Fj60's. The 55 was running KYB MonoMax and the 60 had the MonoMax in the front and Gas-A-just in the rear. Both of the rigs handled the ride better than my Fj62 or 85 PU ever did. The friend with the 55 took a ride in my 62 and within minutes, stated my shocks were the problem. I was like, No way! there Rancho 9000X shocks. He replied, he'd gone from Ranchos to KYB's and that did it for his rig.
So I bought them and I was shocked at how well the KYB's worked. I now have a hard time grouping the Ranchos as shocks.
The 9000x shocks I removed were in perfect condition, and I sold the set for $200. I felt a little guilty selling them, as I really feel I should of thrown them in the trash.
You are in the position of not being able to use the MonoMax, because of your lift.
My rig now rides more like my VFR800 (with it's $1100. Penske shock), and I like it.