Lower Subframe loose on 04 KLR? - 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 6 Old 03-19-2011, 10:05 PM Thread Starter
1st Gear
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Fernie, BC
Posts: 71
Lower Subframe loose on 04 KLR?

I have been lurking around the site trying to find info on the subframe upgrade but haven't been that successful. I have found some info but nothing relating to my specific issue. All the subframe bolt upgrades seem to focus on the upper subframe bolts. My issue is with the lower bolt on the right hand side.

I was loading my thumper into my truck and manhandling it into position. I noticed that when I lifted the rack, there was a loose connection on the lower bolt. About 1/8 to 1/4 inch play on the lower side. I took the lower bolt out and found that it was worn badly on the mid section but the threads were fine. I haven't taken it apart yet but it appears that the hole for the lower subframe bolt may of 'out of round'. It definately is loose when I lift the rear section.

So I am looking for advice. I am going to replace the worn bolt (all the subframe bolts)but I don't think that is all it is going to take to repair fully. Can I have the lower arm welded to get the hole back to round? Do I have to replace the whole subframe? Any suggestions?

I will try to get some pics but it may be a while. I am planning on taking my thumper apart in a couple of weeks so I need to order parts required.

thanks in advance,
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post #2 of 6 Old 03-20-2011, 12:22 AM
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Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Redondo Beach
Posts: 8,106

Hard to say without seeing a picture.

If it were mine and I thought the out of round hole was a problem, I'd probably look into welding it. Probably would see about welding a washer on it and getting some good fill in the hole.

Depending upon your level of funds, though, there are subframes on e-bay right now for $45-$75.


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post #3 of 6 Old 03-20-2011, 12:32 PM
5th Gear
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 4,700
I'd pull off the seat and see where it's loose. If it's the main top bolt, now's a perfect time to do a subframe bolt upgrade.. About $15 and 20 minutes worth of work, and it's done for the life of the bike..

I (and many others I ride with) have done it, going to bigger/and better grade 8 bolts, with nylock nuts and loctite 242..

Take a good look and see where the issue is.. My guess is the top, main bolt is loose.. Rather than just tightening it up, drill it out to the next bigger size and replace it, and the 2 smaller ones by the footpegs while you're at it.
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post #4 of 6 Old 03-20-2011, 04:46 PM Thread Starter
1st Gear
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Fernie, BC
Posts: 71
yep, I have the upgraded bolts and will install them once I take a closer look at what is going on. thx
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post #5 of 6 Old 03-20-2011, 07:16 PM Thread Starter
1st Gear
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Fernie, BC
Posts: 71
Ok, I spent some time on my bike this afternoon and here is what I found. The top right subframe bolt was sheared off, thus causing the movement on the bottom right subframe bolt. I am not sure when it came off but I know I was riding it like that for a couple of short rides. I am thankful nothing else seems to be broken and I am happy not to have hurt myself due to the lower bolt shearing! If anyone has not done the subframe bolt upgrade I highly suggest doing it ASAP!!!

Also, I found the weld on the gas tank mount was cracked on the left side. Looks like a trip to the welder is in order.

I have tried to attach pics but not sure if it worked.

PS...why did the neighbor have to ride up and down the alley on his DR while I was tearing my KLR apart! Talk about jealous!

Attachment 896

Attachment 897

Last edited by Lizardrider; 06-01-2011 at 09:40 PM.
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post #6 of 6 Old 03-20-2011, 08:41 PM
5th Gear
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 4,700
Excellent job finding the issue!! It's a good thing only one side broke!!
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