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  #1  
Old 31 Jul 2008
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What Mods are needed on KLR 650 for trip to SA

I would like to know exactly what modifications are must haves when planning a trip from the USA to South America on a 07 or older KLR 650? Are Progressive rear shocks and front fork springs a must? Please detail whatever kind of mods you have done to your KLR for such a trip. I would like to travel to SA on motorcycle, but do not want to break the bank in doing so. Also what is the best site to purchase these mods? I have found KLR650.com and happy-trail.com, the first site seems to be somewhat cheaper but not so sure about quality of parts. WTH is a Scottoiler anyways? Should I go with the larger gas tank 6.6 gallons or the full engine guard?

Thanks

Mococaman

Last edited by mococaman; 31 Jul 2008 at 10:04.
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  #2  
Old 31 Jul 2008
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Klr650

The klr 650 need some supension front and back, the progressive will change the handling of the bike, you will need to protect frame and engine,reenforce the frame( they sale a kit for that)the brake are a bit weak but ok to me , the luggage are expensive so if you want you can go soft luggage,no need for better tank,no need for scott oiler just stop often and grease the chaine,the light are good enough, invest in some good tires , the standar one sold with the bike are not good,I did it with a klr and own two of them , superb bike ,look arround there are some website just for KLR.Bring some spare part , they may not be easy to find in SA.
good luck
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  #3  
Old 31 Jul 2008
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Mococaman, this is my first post on the HUBB but I do know a little about the KLR.
Fred at Arrowhead has all things KLR
Arrowhead Motorsports On-line Parts List

A great site for KLR Info is
KLR650.NET - Your Kawasaki KLR650 Resource! - Forums Home
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  #4  
Old 31 Jul 2008
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I did 6 months from LA to BA on a 2005 KLR 650.

I found that:

Larger tank - not needed
Suspension upgrade - maybe but then again why not just save the money for and repairs if neede.
Off road footpegs - definatly needed
quality handguards (to avoid levers/fingers breaking) - needed
alu bashplate - not needed, waste of money
highway pegs (whitehorse.com) - cheap and very comfy, but not needed
quality rack from happytrails.com - good and cheap
alu boxes - not needed, keep your weight down instead
aftermarket seat - save the money and buy a sheepskin
quality handbars (renthal alu) - maybe an ok investment, but then again...
heated handgrips - needed! I froze my hands too much without...
taller windscreen - try taking the standart off instead, works very well
quality sprocket and quality chain - needed and worth the money
a set of jets to tune the carb to altitude - needed! I really missed having them
upgraded gearshift lever if you have big feet - The IMS is nice quality, but I wouldent bother if the standart fits you fine
upgraded brakes (larger disc and steelbraided lines) - I havent tried the stock, but even the fully upgraded one didnt ever lock the brakes. Depending on driving style this is needed/not needed.
scottoiler could be ok, but you want something that can use whatever oil you have at hand.
centerstand - would be nice, but too heavy and lowers groundclerance

I had alot of stuff on mine, and if you ask me how I would do it another time, this would be my ideal setup:

By the lowest mile 2005-2007 KLR 650 you can find.
Put handguards, offroads footpegs on. Use throwover softbags.

Drive off and spend the money on fun instead...
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  #5  
Old 31 Jul 2008
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KLR parts

I have ridden with the guy behind KLR650.com and also installed many of the parts from that website on KLR's for customers. They are less expensive and they work. As far as a centerstand...it might be easier to lube your chain every 200 miles if you have one. Also flat tire fixes are easier with a centerstand.
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  #6  
Old 31 Jul 2008
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Hey Mococaman,

I am planning on doing the same trip and have already started on upgrades.

So far I have done ...
  • Aluminum Skid Plate - stock is pretty weak, why risk it,
  • Progressive front springs - Im a bigger guy and the front dove quite a bit
  • Upgraded rear brake bracket - Done when I bought the bike
  • Upgraded shift lever - stock weld is said to be weak (never confirmed it)
  • T mod for the carburator
  • Radiator/resevior Guards - I am surely going to drop my bike and wanted more protection
  • Highway Pegs - so I can stretch my feet out
  • Doohickey - again everyone says replace it
  • Hand Guards
I am planning on doing ...
  • Rear suspension upgrade
  • Subframe Upgrade - read it is a must
  • Sheepskin for the seat
  • Electric hand warmers, with gel handgrips
  • 12v port - for electronics, heated vest (maybe)
  • Eagle Dashboard (maybe, just to have everything organized)
I agree with what was said above, the seat upgrade may be worth it, but I dont plan on sitting on my bike for 10 hours a day, and if my ass gets sore, Ill just take a break, I am in no rush.

I am leaning more towards aluminum boxes for added security and drop protection. Thought of doing aluminum handlebars but i have no problems with the OEM steel.

Keep me posted on what dates you are leaving, I am heading north at the end of June 2009 to Inuvik than heading south from there to TDF, would like to be in TDF by february so I can go to Antarctica, so that gives me 6 months to work my way down, which is probably an enormous amount of time.
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  #7  
Old 31 Jul 2008
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Centerstand alternative

I had a centerstand on my for last year's central America trip and it came in handy, but I have taken it off due to weight and reduced clearance for next month's trip to TDF. As an alternative, I made a "crutch" that holds the wheel off the ground when balanced on the sidestand. Put the crutch under the swingarm or right front axle nut depending on which wheel you want to raise.

I made the crutch from an aluminum walking cane... the expandable kind. You can probably find an old one in a thrift shop for a couple of bucks. New they are about $10. Cut off the top (curved) part. You can then collapse it to fit in your luggage (about a foot long) and expand it when needed. Only weights a couple of ounces.
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  #8  
Old 31 Jul 2008
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KLR for SA

I'm leaving for Argentina about Sept 9 from Panama (where I live). Anyone else headed that way in that time frame let me know and hopefully we can meet up.

I've done pretty much all the mods that Mitchel suggests, plus a few more that I find helpful (but maybe not absolutely essential)
  • Al Jesse aluminum luggage (most usable space)
  • Stainless/reusable oil filter (I don't want to have to go looking for filters)
  • "European" left switch cluster. I've found that when I use my electric clothes (gloves and jacket liner) I pull too much current. This switch allows me to turn off the headlight (and a few other plusses)
  • Stebel air horn. I lived/rode in Asia for years and found that a VERY loud horn can save your life.
  • IMS or other metal footpegs. The rubber ones are crap when it's wet! (Essential)
  • Changing fuses to blade type (not as prone to breakage) and relocating fuse box so you don't have to take off all the panels and seat to replace a fuse. (After having the headlight fuse go out on a dark road at night I judged this to be essential, too).
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  #9  
Old 31 Jul 2008
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Hehe, I remember when we stuck knobbies and crash bars on a street bike and called it dual purpose



Last edited by MeCasa; 31 Jul 2008 at 18:22.
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  #10  
Old 31 Jul 2008
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I forgot to mention the carb "t-mod" this is really important. Unless you fancy having to stop and start all the time when it rains.
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  #11  
Old 31 Jul 2008
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What exactly is the T-mod and where do I purchase it?

Thanks

Mococaman
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  #12  
Old 31 Jul 2008
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the t-mod is explained here (other good mods there as well):

MarkNet - KLR650 : Carb Rain T-Mod for Wet Weather Issues
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  #13  
Old 1 Aug 2008
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That is right on spot Mollydog! I would go softbags next time and way less junk.

Stuffing your KLR like a turkey and expecting it to be anywhere close to nimble or comfortable is naive. It is what it is and that is cheap, reliable and decent.

I would also second the "centerstand made out of an old crutch". I bought one myself from a thrift (spelling) store in the states. 5$ and with the help of a hacksaw and 10 minutes I had a very usefull and leightweight "centerstand".
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  #14  
Old 2 Aug 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by peter-denmark View Post
That is right on spot Mollydog! I would go softbags next time and way less junk.

Stuffing your KLR like a turkey and expecting it to be anywhere close to nimble or comfortable is naive. It is what it is and that is cheap, reliable and decent.

I would also second the "centerstand made out of an old crutch". I bought one myself from a thrift (spelling) store in the states. 5$ and with the help of a hacksaw and 10 minutes I had a very usefull and leightweight "centerstand".
I don't understand this crutch thing, any chance u have a photo?
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  #15  
Old 2 Aug 2008
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going to ecuador and beyond

i'm rideing a KLR650 out of san antonio,tx i would like to go threw copper canyon,mexico and then on down i am going to put the up grade suspencion
and a tank gard i will be ready very soon
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