Suspension - Kawasaki KLR 650 Forum
1987 to 2007 Wrenching & Mods For maintaining, repair or modifications of Generation 1 KLR's. 2007 and earlier.

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post #1 of 11 Old 03-01-2010, 10:04 AM Thread Starter
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Suspension

Can anyone give me a few tips on adjustments to the suspension. I do not have a manual for my bike. (2007 KLR) How much air pressure should I put in the front shocks? Also, how can I adjust the rear shock to be stiffer? I weight about 250 and the suspension sinks down quite a bite just by getting on the bike

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post #2 of 11 Old 03-01-2010, 10:35 AM
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At 250 pounds of rippling steel and sex appeal myself, I've had to crank the rear shock to 5. I fiddled with the rebound adjustment so that the rear shock didn't pack up on washboard roads. That was about the best I could do on my '08.
What ya gotta reralize is that we're about 100 pounds over what KHI figured would be an average rider and designed the bike around.
My '08 has no aircaps on the forks, so I can't advise on that. The real fix for us clydesdales is a better set of springs in the front and a good aftermarket shock at the rear.
Tomatocity, among others, has recommended preload adjusters that you might try. At $99 they might be a good bet for your '07.
Remember, though, that you should try and balance the front and rear mods - don't stiffen the front and ignore the back.

Tom

Added: at the top of the rear shock is a hex nut. This can be rotated in a clockwise (only!) direction through 5 positions to add preload to the spring. 5 is the stiffest setting.

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'Why' and 'How' are words so important they cannot be too often used. -Napoleon Bonaparte

Last edited by Tom Schmitz; 03-01-2010 at 10:42 AM. Reason: added info
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post #3 of 11 Old 03-01-2010, 10:41 AM Thread Starter
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Gotcha. I figured I could just shoot a little more air in the forks but I have 150 psi at my shop and know better than to put that kinda pressure or it will blow the seals. I think I can put 10 or 20 lbs in a air tank and use that, one shot and a time. So there is an adjustment on the rear shock that is from 1 to 5. Where do I look to see what is set on? and how do you adjust it?

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post #4 of 11 Old 03-01-2010, 10:45 AM
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I edited my post as you were posting, sorry ;^).

The adjustment nut is at the top of the shock.

I believe if you look carefully you'll see some lines scribed at the top that indicate the setting. Memory is dim on this.

Tom

PPMC # 5

'Why' and 'How' are words so important they cannot be too often used. -Napoleon Bonaparte
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post #5 of 11 Old 03-01-2010, 11:10 AM Thread Starter
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Cool, thanks

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post #6 of 11 Old 03-01-2010, 06:13 PM
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As tom stated the preload adjustment for the rear shock is on the top left side of the shock. It takes a 10mm socket if I remember correctly. The dampening adjustment is on the bottom right side of the shock under a clip on cover. Both of these adjustments only go one way. If you need to go back a setting then you need to go all the way around.
For the forks for the time being you can make new preload spacers for the front springs. You can use 3/4" sch40 PVC to make them. The stock spacers are 5.5" long. A 6" spacer should get you in the ballpark for sag and improve the overall handling. You can try adding a few pounds of air with a bicycle pump but it does make the front ride kind of harsh. When you're ready to spend the money Cogent Dynamics has a great shock and spring setup for the KLR.
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post #7 of 11 Old 03-04-2010, 12:06 AM
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Rear shock:
-12mm socket with a 3/8" drive 6" extension.
-I try to run the rear shock as soft as possible and adjsut it as I add or remove load.
-The rebound has 1-2-3-4 as adjustments. The 2-3 are the only usable settings. Find a speed bump and ride over it while sitting and standing an to see how the rear handles.

Front forks:
-Air pressure, not! The Gen2 KLR does not have a schrader valve. The original intent of the schrader valve is to let air build up out of the forks. If you let the forks cool off the air pressure decreases.
-Steering head maintenance and adjustment are a given.
-Progressive fork springs.
-MotoWizard Preload Adjusters.
-Ricor Fork Valves (easy to install) or RaceTech Gold Valves (difficult to install).
-Synthetic Fork Fluid, #5.
-Fork fluid level, 170mm from the top, has a definite performance effect.
-The Gen1 KLR has 38mm forks and the Gen2 has 41mm forks. The 41mm forks are a huge improvement.

Tim

2005 KLR 685
2015 Yamaha Super Tenere ES, 5/23/2015
2012 Yamaha Super Tenere; Purchased 7/30/2011; Sold 5/23/2015
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post #8 of 11 Old 03-04-2010, 08:13 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks, great info. I did adjust the rear to 5 and used a hand pump to put just a little in the front shocks. Its seems stiffer but I have not rode it yet. Am I to understand there is an adjustment at the bottom of the rear shock? Does it have a dial also?

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post #9 of 11 Old 03-04-2010, 05:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnk8080 View Post
Thanks, great info. I did adjust the rear to 5 and used a hand pump to put just a little in the front shocks. Its seems stiffer but I have not rode it yet. Am I to understand there is an adjustment at the bottom of the rear shock? Does it have a dial also?
It is just a wheel that you can turn with your thumb. It'll have settings 1 thru 4, 1 being the least amount of dampening and 4 the most.
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post #10 of 11 Old 03-04-2010, 06:57 PM Thread Starter
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Cool, I will play with it to find the best setting

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