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KLR 650 Vibration?

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I was all set to buy a new KLR 650 last weekend.  Then I did several hours of reading the archives on threads of KLR 650 vs. DR650.


A few threads had said that the DR 650 has the following items that the KLR does not:

  1. Balancer shaft in the engine that makes the DR650 engine run smoother with less vibration compared to the KLR 650
  2. Rubber mounts in the foot pegs to eliminate vibration in the pegs.
  3. Rubber in the triple clamp to eliminate vibration in the handle bars.

I owned a 2007 DR650 for a year and liked it a lot.   The reason I was wanting to get the KLR this time is because while I enjoyed the DR650 road manners I initially got the impression from reading this forum that the KLR 650 would be even smoother on the road than the DR650.   Although I won't ever ride more than 50 miles in a day I want the KLR IF it will be a smoother and less fatiguing ride on the road.


Now after reading the vibration factors enumerated above it seems like the KLR 650 would have more vibration and thus a less enjoyable ride with more fatigue.  Vibration and smoothness are clearly very important factors for me. 


It has been said that the KLR is likely a better adventure bike than the DR 650 but I won't be going on any long rides so adventure capability is not an important factor for me.



Is it really true that based on the items enumerated above that the KLR 650 will have more vibration than the KLR?


Is the DR650 a smoother  and less fatiguing ride on the road than the KLR 650?


Are there other factors than come in to play for easier road riding for these two bikes?


Thank you very much for your insight and experience.  It is greatly appreciated.


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I've never ridden the DR so I can't compare the two.

The KLR also has a counter balancer, and rubber, but not rubber mounted pegs.

The handlebars are not rubber mounted. I notice uncomfortable vibration off road but not on road in the handlebars.

Vibration is pretty subjective to the rider. I think I'm probably more sensitive than most.

I was in the opposite situation, KLR vs. DR, had a KLR before so stuck with the devil I knew. I ride mostly off road.


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mine is as smooth or smoother than the DRs I've ridden. I would say.... functionally no difference. but, first off.... be aware that a new one will be rougher running than the same bike 3000 miles later.... they just are.  second,,, engine tuning will reduce vibes on the klr: a careful setting of the valves so the intakes match each other & exhaust match each other, an iridium plug, and the carb is set way lean from the factory & needs to be slightly richened (22 cent mod). one thing that really helps is a 685/688/705 piston... all of these kits reduce piston weight.


maybe consider a used bike with some of these things already done.


maybe ride a couple examples


for what it's worth, my klr with full fuel (5.7 gal, measured) weighs 410 with textile saddlebags & tank bag, HT crash bars, full complement of tools, tire kit & compressor. my buddies stock DR was 386.


the forks need to be properly serviced in order to be reasonable. they work ok if serviced. they work great with Ricor valves. the klr seat is junk.

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oh yeah.... 16 tooth countershaft sprocket for the highway is good too


and tire choice plays a part. I have 2 sets of wheels, TKC or MT21  for mainly dirt trips and AT90 Scorpions for road trips with minimal dirt... the difference is quite prononuced.  the TKCs produce more vibes than my engine

Edited by Beezerboy

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