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2005 KLR650 suggested mods.

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Been doing a significant amount of trail riding on mine without issues but my kid just sold his and got a crf450x and I wanna ride with him and I am looking for suggestions on modifications that may make this beast a little more nimble. Tires are already in the works, a more aggressive off road tread but still perform OK on the street. Occasionally I commute to work on it, 60 mile round trip freeway ride. Probly lookin at replacing the chain tensioner (aka dohickey) but aside from that I am open to suggestions. Not wanting to get crazy just a little more.... Competitive on the trails.

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Klr650 will not be competitive of trails no matter what you do. It's just too big and heavy. Sure you can ride one if trails but for the money you'd drop into a new shock and fork swap you can get a cheap kdx and have fun on trails

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Agree with above, and you won't make it much more nimble, But...

 

I ride through pretty nasty stuff regularly. I run dunlop606 or Pirelli MT21 street legal knobbies. Good in the dirt, OK but noisy on the street. I have suspension work, but like hadfield said, spendy. The front is the worse, you can do springs first for maybe $100 and RaceTech gold valve emulators for another $200, your labor.

 

Only put in as much gas as you need, riding with a CRF, I'm guessing 2 gal. That saves you maybe 35# up high.

 

You won't win any races, but you'll probably get there.

 

Mike

Edit: mistype, should be 25# up high.

Edited by Flagstaff

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How big are you?  My buddy had one with all the mods you can think of.  Plus custom motor work.  KLX650 forks, port and polish head, complete exhaust, 665 overbore, on and on.  It was pretty quick, but could not keep up with a 450x in the dirt.  Just too heavy.  My buddy was big too.  6'5" and 230lbs.  He couls move it around pretty good, but still no contest.

Edited by hadfield4wd

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I am 180 and pretty fit so muscling the bike around isn't too tough. But at 48 years old I can't get worn out by the end of the day.

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My buddy has thousands into his bike.  For all that money go buy a cheapish KDX for dirt work and single track. KLR is fire roads and street.

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BTW thinking of putting Michelin T63 tires on ???

Those are like 50/50 tires, short knobs. The 606's and MT21's are closer to 90/10 dirt/street. No way the KLR will ever be the dirt bike the CRF is but I found myself going on longer off road rides and occasionally putting down 100 miles of slab. My prior 2 bikes were a DRZ400 and a WR450, the KLR was a better compromise. The KTM 690 would probably be about the best for my riding, but my wallet is a little too thin.

Mike

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I had 606's on my KLR600 and my buddy had MT21's on his 650.  You could almost make a trailer to pull with the 650 with a KDX on it for dirt portions. :lol:

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I like both those tires... My concern is the 150ish miles a week I may put on them commuting to work via freeways.

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Last week I road 100 + miles on I17, Flagstaff to Phoenix, then 100 miles off road, rocks, sand, river crossing, etc.,  back toward Flagstaff, then back home on I17. 325 miles total. Freeway speed actual 70-75. You won't drag footpegs with these tires, but they'll do. 2000-3000 miles a set off the top of my head, mixed riding. These are legal DOT tires.

 

Where in Michigan? I lived in 8 or so towns and cities there long ago.

 

Mike

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Port Huron Michigan and I should have added I will put about 150 miles a week commuting to work on the freeway.

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I've lived in Flint twice and Mt. Clemons. I checked my maintenance logs, more like 3000 miles+ on the 606's. On my first set of MT21's, might get slightly less miles, but the MT21 front is WAY better off road.

 

Mike

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My KLR takes a 130/80 - 17 rear and both Dulop and Pirelli only come in 130/90 - 17. Is that because of the longer lugs / tread / Knobbies or what ever you call them. The Michelin's come in 130/80-17 but maybe because the knobbie is shorter????

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I think the 130/80, refers to the carcass, but not sure. Anyway the Dunlop and Pirelli fit fine as I'm assuming the Michelin will. Knobs might just kiss the chainguard, but it's easy to bend over slightly. I have about 1/4" clearance with the MT21. The 130 is width in mm, the 80 or 90 is height as% of width.

 

Mike

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best thing you can do for the stock forks is Ricor valves... don't bother changing springs, put the money into the valves. altering the fork oil level makes dramatic changes as well. the stock oil  level is listed in the book as 190mm but (the original) level of 170 is better. I am running Ricors with 5 wt at about 100mm & it;s nearly as good as when I had YZ forks on my klr. pull the springs, collapse the fork, add oil to suit. more oil equals less fork dive. before the Ricors I ran 10 psi air on top of 170mm of 10 weight (ATF). of over 3 dozen bikes I checked at tech days.... none had even the 190 level except one done by the owner. mine was short of that by 50cc per side when new (2 weeks old, wobbly in the wind). one bike I checked was 200cc low per side (never serviced since new). every bike we set to 170 & 10psi made the owner happy

 

a 14 tooth countershaft sprocket helps off road but will cost you on the highway. the 13 is stupid fun in the bushes.  I have run everything from 13 to 16 on the front with 43 and 45 on the back... all will fit with the stock chain

 

I have a 705 & stage 1 head now, so I just leave the 16 on all the time as it will pull hard at low speed in the dirt & is almost as good as if it had 6th gear on the highway

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1st commute with the Michelin T63's not as good on the freeway as the Kenda (80/20) but not bad 75/80mph felt a little... Floaty is the best was to describe it, but this is only a couple days a week, the real test will be on the trail ride I have planned for next weekend. Also looking for some hand guards but not sure what my handlebar diameter is, was thinking of MSR's but I can't order until I know what size to buy... Anyone know the size or make a recommendation on a brand? Trying to stay under $50.

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Been doing a significant amount of trail riding on mine without issues but my kid just sold his and got a crf450x and I wanna ride with him and I am looking for suggestions on modifications that may make this beast a little more nimble. Tires are already in the works, a more aggressive off road tread but still perform OK on the street. Occasionally I commute to work on it, 60 mile round trip freeway ride. Probly lookin at replacing the chain tensioner (aka dohickey) but aside from that I am open to suggestions. Not wanting to get crazy just a little more.... Competitive on the trails.

If it hasn't been changed. GET THE DOOHICKEY DONE. It's not matter of if it's WHEN it will fail.

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best thing you can do for the stock forks is Ricor valves... don't bother changing springs, put the money into the valves. altering the fork oil level makes dramatic changes as well. the stock oil  level is listed in the book as 190mm but (the original) level of 170 is better. I am running Ricors with 5 wt at about 100mm & it;s nearly as good as when I had YZ forks on my klr. pull the springs, collapse the fork, add oil to suit. more oil equals less fork dive. before the Ricors I ran 10 psi air on top of 170mm of 10 weight (ATF). of over 3 dozen bikes I checked at tech days.... none had even the 190 level except one done by the owner. mine was short of that by 50cc per side when new (2 weeks old, wobbly in the wind). one bike I checked was 200cc low per side (never serviced since new). every bike we set to 170 & 10psi made the owner happy

 

a 14 tooth countershaft sprocket helps off road but will cost you on the highway. the 13 is stupid fun in the bushes.  I have run everything from 13 to 16 on the front with 43 and 45 on the back... all will fit with the stock chain

 

I have a 705 & stage 1 head now, so I just leave the 16 on all the time as it will pull hard at low speed in the dirt & is almost as good as if it had 6th gear on the highway

I just did my forks.  Added 1.5" of preload went with 17cm of atf and 10psi of air.  I love the difference it made.

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