Horizons Unlimited - The HUBB

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-   -   kevin the unlucky klr.. (http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hubb/kawasaki/kevin-the-unlucky-klr-23883)

getalexfr 28 Oct 2006 20:39

kevin the unlucky klr..
to summarise my problems (i really could take up a lot of space...), my 2004 klr 650 is now in the big honda garage in la paz, bolivia (recommended by HU) having a new cam chain, cam chain tensioner and doohickey fitted (the cÑts at Kawasaki had better have sorted the latter piece of cr.ap out on the new 2008 model). As so many readers in this forum will know, the hardest thing to deal with is the fact that you have to trust these mechanics, when often the largest machine they´ve worked on is a ´hero´, and they have never even heard of kawasakis... other than on a tatty poster of a ninja (if you´re lucky.) in fact on this trip i have had more problems caused by one mechanic alone than by natural causes! git

anyway here´s my question, with only a sentence or two more of preamble:
The mechanic here had A LOT of trouble getting off the large bowl-shaped piece of metal within the engine, to get at the chains beneath (i´m well-teknicul, me...), and had to actually drive the bike on a flatbed to someone else who had the necessary tools (? i wasn´t there) to manage it. this surprisingly rings a bell -i remember seeing a post of some klr owners wanting to borrow special tools in order to pre-empt their doohickey failure and install a replacement. So:
When REinstalling this large bowl shaped metal part (stop laughing you bastardos..), do you require some special powerful tool? I asked mr mechanic whether he would be driving kevin over to the aforementioned tool source to put it back on, and he said no, a spanner would be fine. Answers asap would be really appreciated as i´m due to be leaving the city tomorrow, and could be up the creek without a mechanic.


SgtMarty 29 Oct 2006 10:23

Sorry about your problem.

Pull the rotor bolt out (very high torque). It is screwed into the crankshaft. You will then need a rotor puller bolt--just whatever fits into the threaded center of the rotor. When you crank that bolt in, it will butt up against the crankshaft and effectively force the rotor off as you screw it in. There is a specific rotor puller bolt made, and it is very hard and cold-rolled threads (to deal with the high torque).

You will need a rotor holder wrench to hold the rotor while you are doing all this wrenching.

Contact Fred at Arrowheadmotorsports.com for the tools. You can fab a rotor wrench if needed.

Check out http://bigcee.com/klr650faq.html for more general KLR info.

For more detailed info on your repair, check out http://klr650.marknet.us/ and click on the Doohickey Procedure in the left column. Near the start of that article, they show the specs on the rotor puller bolt and the rotor holder wrench.

There is other tech stuff there, too.

getalexfr 29 Oct 2006 16:29

thanks for the info. still stuck here. spanner not fine...
he{s going to send it to some heavy duty place to tighten it on again, after the weekend. gotta love mechanics. hmph.

Ride Far 31 Oct 2006 03:59

Hey Alex. You at Walter Nosiglia's place? Actually a decent looking shop for Bolivia but exactly, you can't trust no mechanic nowhere no how. Dangerous men! If well-intentioned...

Along with Sgt. Marty's links you can get comprehensive & expert answers fast at www.klr650.net message forums. It was down for a while but back up now. If you're not a member sign up and ask away.

BTW, what's the cause of your problem -- doohickey failure? Couldn't quite tell what went wrong. Best of luck.

getalexfr 31 Oct 2006 16:14

a one off?
yep, i´m at walter´s honda on avenida costanera.
never heard of my problem happening on a klr before, expecially a 2 yr old one (!), but it was the cam chain tensioner that caused at least some of the problems, i.e. it apparently was stuck in a not-doing-it´s-job position. The cam chain stretched, jumped a couple of teeth and i was suddenly stranded on a desert road, north peru. The people at the nearest garage did a bodge job repair, but said i aught to replace the tensioner, as the spring was shi.t.

To cut a long story short i ordered one and a whole new cam chain from california, to arrive in la paz about the same time as me. things didn´t go that smoothly though, and a month later i still haven´t got away. plus i´m very nervous that they will have screwed something ELSE up in the process. always the same story.

The doohickey had completely shattered and come off. no idea if this was related to the cam chain issue, or separate. Anyway they ´made´one locally and told me it was made of stronger steel than the original. like i say, what can you do but trust them??? :(

feeling depressed as hell that this will never come right!

Ride Far 31 Oct 2006 18:40

Well, they don’t call it adventure motorcycling for nothing! IMHO, take charge of the repairs yourself to the extent possible instead of crossing your fingers and trusting them. After a while traveling thru South America I never let a mechanic work on my bike without my being there and watching their every move. AMAZING (horrifying) what they will do left to their own devices…

Like I say, if you haven’t, get to klr650.net and explain your problem clearly on the Bike Maintenance forum. If you need some serious gearhead advice and that’s the place to get it, from Sgt. Marty & others. The more you understand the scope and details of the issue the better you can supervise the repairs and prevent errors by mechanics.

As for a homemade Bolivian doohickey – %$#@*&! Obviously that could be more problems down the road. I’d think about having Eagle Mfg. of San Diego ship you the aftermarket replacement, which I’ve never heard of failing. Eagle Mike is a regular on klr650.net and will ship his bulletproof doohickey to La Paz. Yeah it’s more weeks in La Paz & money but consider the alternative…

Microfiche of 2004 KLR motor internals if you don’t have one -- http://www.ronayers.com/fiche/frames...10&parent=6210

I was stuck in La Paz, and later Coroico, myself thanks to a failed aftermarket aluminum fan on my KLR. A metal dude in Coroico made me a new one from a paint can lid. Luckily he made two because the first one failed after one day. The second one I installed in a remote town called Circuita in the Yungas after fortifying it with JB Weld.

I made it thru the Yungas across the altiplano to Uyuni to Laguna Colorado and finally to Santiago, where a friend had sent me a new fan & radiator.

Good luck & enjoy La Paz .. there are worse cities to be stuck in …

AndyT 1 Nov 2006 01:17

I agree with the poster who doesn't trust the "homemade" doohickey. I am currently in Huaraz Peru on a KLR and am carrying a rotor puller. Although I think you could use a bolt if you knew what the thread size is (I don't) for that. If you are still in LaPaz in 2-3 weeks I will offer whatever assistance I can. I have done the doohickey replacement on my own bike. I hope you are sorted long before then, but keep in touch. ajtiegs aaattt yahooooooo ddoott com

javkap 1 Nov 2006 01:53

Hi Alex
As I live down here in BA and have a workshop always I’m forced to made my owns specials tool. Official Dealers never brings that’s staff so easily or they don’t sale it to no official workshops.
Years a go trying to do the work that you are now, I found the property bolt from a Mercedes Benz trucks parts store, some old trucks use the same diameter and thread in a front arm or on the shock absorber.
About the holder wrench to hold the rotor, you can buy a spanner make some cut to bend it in a shape to sort the side of the rotor and stop over or under the front peg as its show in the workshop manual and then weld where you cut to the bends. Also better if you can weld some piece of metal to close the open face from the spanner.
As I’m now at my house, I will try to take few picture from the tools tomorrow and post it here, also can check diameter thread and sizes from both tools.
One year a go I made other set of tools to my very good friend Balam, the only one Mexican Traveller around the world tour on a KLR ….?
Now he carrying that always to be prepared to any side road repair or workshops with out tools…
Also you need to know that if never the rotor was pulled off before it not will comes so easy. Are stickled with some Loctite, try to warm it with a torch and after torque the puller bolt smash it with a very heavy hammer. And repeat the process few times until the rotor come out. Be sure to read the workshop manual until to destroy something.

Sophie-Bart 1 Nov 2006 14:55

Hi Alex,

Maybe this link can be of some sort of value for you. Detailed info and pictures (even the mentioned homemade special tools) tips and tricks.

I must say I'm no mechanic nor klr owner, but after reading again and again on the hubb about a "doohickey", I couldn't resist. I just had to know what the heck is a doohickey.

Well, now I know (sort-of)...

good luck

Ride Far 1 Nov 2006 17:49

Diagram of cam chain timing specs may also be useful.


Narelz 2 Nov 2006 01:42

do you have all the pieces of the defunct doohickey, if not do a thorough search while you are in the guts. Probe around with a magnet. If you can't locate anything on the leftside you may want to remove the rightside and check the oilscreen. I found the neck of my broke doohickey wedge in the oil drainage hole. That was 15,000 some odd miles ago.

Good luck

also if you can get your hands on a Clymer manual for KLR, do so

getalexfr 2 Nov 2006 01:59

thanks all for support/advice. i´m finally moving again (but yeah, terrified something will go wrong soon). heading on a beeline for BA, as i´ve lost so much time in la sodding paz, and need to make my connecting flight.

you can run a bike with a broken doohickey (obviously not ideal, but..) so if it breaks i may still be able to get to someone with some sense in B aires...

Javier i was going to come and buy you a beer anyway, so i can pick your brains about shipping... hopefully i won´t need help with a broken bike too! maybe see you soon.


lecap 6 Nov 2006 11:47

Rotor puller and holder for KLR
The rotor puller for the KLR 650 rotor is a M22X1.5 thread (22mm dia X 1.5mm height). You can get M22X1.5 bolts for little money from engineering shops worldwide. 50mm thread length and standard hexagonal head is fine. They usually come in grade 10.9 at least, more often 12.9 which means they are adequate in strength for the task of pulling the rotor. The rotor sits extremely tight if it was never removed before. Sometimes it's a good idea to plane the front face of the bolt as it's usually a bit hollow and skew from manufactury. As far as I know and have seen on my KLR's the rotor is not secured with loctite in the factory. It's just very tight. I don't use heat to loosen the rotor as it works without and I am a bit worried about affecting thermally threated parts too much. I also don't use big hammers.

The same rotor puller also fits a huge range of other Jap. bikes generators and is something of a Japanese standard. Means: If you can locate a shop which works on Jap. bikes they will most probably have one.

To hold the rotor you should get yourself a good quality CrV spanner, I think it's a 32mm (?). Don't buy a cheapo as you might hurt yourself. I used a Stahlville CrV "Alloy" open box. (one open end one ring) Gedore is fine too.
Clamp the open spanner end in a solid vice.
Heat it with an acetylene welding torch just where the shaft begins until red hot. Heat it quickly or you will not be able to bend a small radius. Bend 90°.
Let it cool slowly WITHOUT USING OIL OR WATER.
Heat a second time further up the shaft to bend it around the rotor. This time you have to bend some 100 to 105° to make sure the end of the spanner sits under / above the footrest in a plane with the other end engaged with the rotor. Otherwise the spanner will slip under load.

Do not cut and weld spanners, do not cool down red hot spanners rapidly, do not heat and bend cheap shit spanners!
In each case the spanner will get brittle and break under load without warning. This will not have consequences for the bike (besides that the blimmin' rotor is still fuss) but might be painful to you / your shins / calfs / hands...
The easiest way to finally remove the rotor is a solid impact driver (ideally 3/4" drive) as you can find them in truck workshops. Do not use 1/2" socket and lever as the lever will bend (= angry owner) or the drive will snap (= "ouchdammit" and angry owner).

I never loctited either rotor onto the shaft cone or rotor bolt into the shaft. Just tightened to 140 Nm and never had anything falling apart. I also never used new rotor bolt as some original Kawa manuals require.

I am very surprised to hear of the cam chain tensioner failing. They were used on a wide variety of Kawasaki bikes for more than 20 years and never known to give trouble. Bad luck.

A bike with a broken doohickey can go for quite a while although it causes the balancer chain to wear quickly. It also causes wear and damage to the sliders of the balancer chain. It should get fixed as soon as possible.

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