The Achievable Dream 5-part series - the definitive guide on DVD for planning your motorcycle adventure. Get Ready! covers planning, paperwork, medical and many other topics! "Inspirational and Awesome!" See the trailer here!
Gear Up! is a 2-DVD set, 6 hours! Which bike is right for me? How do I prepare the bike? What stuff do I need - riding gear, clothing, camping gear, first aid kit, tires, maps and GPS? What don't I need? How do I pack it all in? Lots of opinions from over 150 travellers! "This DVD will save you a fortune!"See the trailer here!
So you've done it - got inspired, planned your trip, packed your stuff and you're on the road! This section is about staying healthy, happy and secure on your motorcycle adventure. And crossing borders, war zones or oceans!
On the Road! is 5.5 hours of the tips and advice you need to cross borders, break down language barriers, overcome culture shock, ship the bike and deal with breakdowns and emergencies."Just makes me want to pack up and go!" See the trailer here!
Tire Changing!Grant demystifies the black art of Tire Changing and Repair to help you STAY on the road! "Very informative and practical." See the trailer here!
Ladies on the Loose! For the first time ever, a motorcycle travel DVD made for women, by women! These intrepid women share their tips to help you plan your own motorcycle adventure. They also answer the women-only questions, and entertain you with amazing tales from the road! Presented by Lois Pryce, veteran solo traveller through South America and Africa and author of 'Lois on the Loose', and 'Red Tape and White Knuckles.'
"It has me all fired up to go out on my own adventure!" See the trailer here!
We're not a big multi-national company, just two people who love motorcycle travel and have grown a hobby into a full time job and a labour of love.
When you decide to become a Member, it helps directly support the site. You get additional privileges on the HUBB, access to the Members Private Store, and more to come as we roll out new systems. Of course, you get our sincere thanks, good karma and knowing you're helping to keep the motorcycle travel dream alive. :-)
Travel BooksMotorcycle and travel books to inspire and inform you!
DVDs - Watch and Learn!
Horizons Unlimited presents!
Achievable Dream The definitive guide to planning your motorcycle adventure! This insanely ambitious 2-year project has produced an informative and entertaining 5-part, 18 hour DVD series. "The ultimate round the world rider's how-to DVD!" MCN UK.
Collectors Box SetAll 5 DVDs with a custom printed slip case. "The series is 'free' because the tips and advice will save much more than you spend on buying the DVD's."
Advertisers- Horizons Unlimited is well-established as the first source of reliable, unbiased information on all aspects of motorcycle travel.
We reach a dedicated, worldwide group of real travellers, and are the only website focusing exclusively on long distance motorcycle travellers.
If you sell motorcycles or motorcycle accessories, riding gear, camping equipment and clothing, transport motorcycles, organize motorcycle tours, or have motorcycles to rent, you should be advertising with us!
I adjusted my valves to the max clearance back in October (10,000 miles ago). I know the manual says that the valve clearance should be checked every 6,000 miles; however, when I did mine a friend helped me and supposedly I don't have to worry about them for a "long time." My question is: how long do you think a "long time" is and when should I check them again? [I also emailed him but I haven't recieved a reply yet so figured I would try this and see what you think.] Thanks.
I set up my 2000 KLR 650 to the loose end of spec at 10,000 miles. I t now has 66,000 on it, and while I've checked them several times, I haven't had to adjust them in all that time. They have closed up some, but still in spec. I would just ride it, unless you piling up serious miles.
My KLR needed valve shims changed around 10,000, again around 70,000 miles. I checked frequently at first, less often after. Contrary to advice given in #2 above, always adjust to the loosest possible spec, not the middle of the range.
You'll notice that some seem to need adjusting more often than others. I don't know what the difference is (Different riding styles? Gas or oil? Engine? Altitude?), but once I got used to things I continued to check every 10 or 15k miles, just in case.
Mines an 09.Easy to check takes only 20-30 minutes once you've done it a few time. Mine have change .001 on one valve (left intake I think) over the past 28,000 miles. I still check them at 6-7 thousand miles. I've seen some KLRs that tighten .002-.003 every 5 thousand miles. Go figure. I'm not sure what the difference is but engine load is probably a factor.
1. It works, as proven to my satisfaction by the fact that KLR's seem to run on and on without need for top end work of any sort for--commonly--100k miles/160k km.
2. It's easy, saving maybe one valve shim change out of two.
Is there more to it than that? Does setting to the loose end of the spec actually harm anything? Is there a theoretical reason why it might? Does anyone have direct experience of a time when it did? Are their specific circumstances when this shouldn't be done, e.g., if you like to accelerate hard, lug the engine, ride at high altitude or drop the bike during deep river crossings? I'm willing to learn.
I did meet a Canadian rider in Brazil who had his valves adjusted far looser than spec somewhere along the way by a "mechanic" who told him not to worry because they'd tighten up over time. His bike sounded terrible, and it's not something I would have done. I never did hear whether anything bad came of it.
"Contrary to advice given in #2 above, always adjust to the loosest possible spec, not the middle of the range. "
Every OHC engine I have ever worked on has had the valves tighten, not loosen over time. The theory is that the valves sink themselves into the seat quicker than any other wear takes place. Ergo, I set them to the loosest spec, assuming they will close up. I have had pushrod engines, car and bike, open up. Just more wear points? I don't know. YMMV.
FWIW, I make it a practice to not run the enigne over 5000 RPM for extended periods.
Long distance riders will likely find that valve clearances close up, stop-starters that they open or close with no pattern.
I've always set to the middle and sometimes have to adjust, but it ain't a big deal.
YMMV, of course.
In my area of work we tend not to base practice on studies of one or two cases, but that is not to say that anecdote is not useful or educational and if it works for you and your riding style, more power to you.
Long distance riders will likely find that valve clearances close up, stop-starters that they open or close with no pattern.....In my area of work we tend not to base practice on studies of one or two cases, but that is not to say that anecdote is not useful or educational
Just to clarify: as I understand it we're all talking about KLR's. I own two, one of which I've had for a lot of miles (and valve checks). I've also talked with a lot of KLR owners about valve clearances, and participated for years in the DSN KLR forum, which includes many long-term KLR riders, vendors and mechanics.
I've not heard anyone describe valve clearances becoming looser, no matter what the riding style. Nor have I heard anyone articulate a rationale for setting valves at mid-spec which is based on experience or mechanical process. That places me somewhere in the netherland beyond "studies of one or two cases." I sure don't consider myself to have settled the issue to the standards of scientific inquiry--control groups, double blind evaluation by disinterested observers, elimination of confounding variables, publication in peer-reviewed journals, etc.
When I get a chance I'll ask in the DSN KLR forum. Just to make sure I've got this right, are you saying you've seen your KLR valves (or someone else's) loosen with use after being set and checked cold? I'm not trying to be snide: I'm hoping not to make a fool of myself by misrepresenting your report.
I'm not trying to be snide: I'm hoping not to make a fool of myself by misrepresenting your report.
Not taken as snide, don't worry; I welcome debate and discussion. To answer your question, I have never serviced a KLR as they stopped selling them in Europe quite some time ago. My stance on bucket and shim valves is based on various other Kawasaki models such as kz650, 750 and GPz550, Suzuki cross the frame fours - GS550, GSX750 (might have had scre and locknut, can't remember) and GS1000 and a Yamaha CTF four; so I accept my experience is clearly not as relevant as yours.
In short, you may have a point. But I'll be setting the clearances on my XT660Z to mid-way, although with screw and lock nut tappets they are a doddle to adjust.
I agree that setting the valve clearances too wide is bad medicine.
"I just wanted to say thanks for doing this and sharing so much with the rest of us." Dave, USA
"Your website is a mecca of valuable information and the DVD series is informative, entertaining, and inspiring! The new look of the website is very impressive, updated and catchy. Thank you so very much!" Jennifer, Canada
"...Great site. Keep up the good work." Murray and Carmen, Australia
"We just finished a 7 month 22,000+ mile scouting trip from Alaska to the bottom of Chile and I can't tell you how many times we referred to your site for help. From how to adjust your valves, to where to stay in the back country of Peru. Horizons Unlimited was a key player in our success. Motorcycle enthusiasts from around the world are in debt to your services." Alaska Riders
10th Annual HU Travellers Photo Contest is on now! This is an opportunity for YOU to show us your best photos and win prizes!
Global Rescue is the premier provider of medical, security and evacuation services worldwide and is the only company that will come to you, wherever you are, and evacuate you to your home hospital of choice. Additionally, Global Rescue places no restrictions on country of citizenship - all nationalities are eligible to sign-up!
Horizons Unlimited is not a big multi-national company, just two people who love motorcycle travel and have grown what started as a hobby in 1997 into a full time job (usually 8-10 hours per day and 7 days a week) and a labour of love. To keep it going and a roof over our heads, we run events (22 this year!); we sell inspirational and informative DVDs; we have a few selected advertisers; and we make a small amount from memberships.
You don't have to be a Member to come to an HU meeting, access the website, the HUBB or
to receive the e-zine. What you get for your membership contribution is our sincere gratitude, good karma and
knowing that you're helping to keep the motorcycle travel dream alive. Contributing Members and Gold Members do get additional features on the HUBB. Here's a list of all the Member benefits on the HUBB.