2004 KLR 650 Project?? - 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 35 Old 03-20-2015, 12:22 PM Thread Starter
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2004 KLR 650 Project??

So, Monday I bought a running and drivable 2004 KLR for $800 with a clean title. I have long wanted a KLR but I have a plated KDX I currently romp around on and I didn't have "good justification" to buy another bike. (I'm up to 10 bikes now) So my friend buys a 2015 WR250R and plans a trip down the eastern seaboard all the way to Key West, now I have a need for a good adventure bike.

My plans are to sell the stock running gear and swap in a ex500 engine, or if the price is right a KLE650 or Ninja 650 engine! I want to be able to ride two up with camping gear OR ride by myself and pull a small bike camper (Bunk house lil' B). The 500 engines are an improvement over the thumper horsepower wise and have 6th gear, the 650 would be awesome but is more work and I have lots of engine swapping experience, but very little EFI experience. None the less, I have the tools and ignorance to pursue whichever I can get my hands on. My goal is to make a highway capable touring bike, I know I will sacrifice some off road ability to gain comfort for long hauls.

Any tips, criticism, advice or other feedback is welcome. I'll post up pictures of my bike when I reach the 15 post minimum.
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post #2 of 35 Old 03-20-2015, 01:03 PM
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Bafoonage,
I do hope that you plan to ride with your friend on the WR250, to Key West and back on the nearly stock and standard KLR this year. And modify next winter. A trip like that will give you an over-all better sense of the KLRs capabilities and your desired alterations.

pdwestman
Modify at "YOUR OWN RISK"!

Still riding my 1987 KL650-A1. 85,000+ miles & counting
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post #3 of 35 Old 03-20-2015, 05:09 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pdwestman View Post
Bafoonage,
I do hope that you plan to ride with your friend on the WR250, to Key West and back on the nearly stock and standard KLR this year. And modify next winter. A trip like that will give you an over-all better sense of the KLRs capabilities and your desired alterations.
Well, I have considered that option but I have a few concerns that make me want to proceed with the swap ASAP.

First off, I have other bikes to fill my 100% on road, and 100% off road needs. This bike will be used as a touring/travel bike, so inherently reliability is my first priority. The previous owner said the speedometer stopped working around 2 years ago, he rode it for a whole additional year and parked for another year after the speedo broke at 35,000 and some change. I have no idea how many miles are on this engine. He had never heard of a doohickey or thermobob which scares me too, to top it off the engine oil level was below the sight glass when I bought it. Took about half a cup to bring it back up. The engine runs great, make a plenty of low end grunt (doesn't smoke) but has 2+ year old oil in it and I have no history of valve adjustments or any other maintenance. Bent radiator, no rad shrouds. Taking off on a 2,500+ mile ride on that many unknowns makes me nervous. If the cams and journals aren't galled up and the engine isn't consuming oil like my two stroke I still have the doohickey, thermobob, valve adjustment and other odds and ends before I'll even begin to trust it. For that kind of money I can add a few extra hundred and pick up a wrecked ex500 and swap it. I have access to all the tools and resources I'd need for the swap.

So that is my dilemma, I don't have anything against the klr power plant, I prefer carbs for reliability and trail side servicing if necessary. I just don't know a thing about this engine, the bike has lived outside for the majority of its life and the plastics reflect that. The poor condition makes this bike a good candidate for a swap in my opinion, I'd basically swap the motor, add a trail tech vapor maybe a few farkles and just ride it. Another thought was to clean the bike up and turn it for a profit and get another KLR in better shape!

Please share your thoughts, I am open to suggestions. I just want to think through whatever I decide to do. Thanks.
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post #4 of 35 Old 03-20-2015, 05:47 PM
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Do it!

Here's inspiration.

And more...

Tom

Tom [email protected]

“On the way downtown I stopped at a bar and had a couple of double Scotches. They didn't do me any good. All they did was make me think of Silver-Wig, and I never saw her again.” -Philip Marlowe

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

Sting like a butterfly.
Noli Timere Messorem
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post #5 of 35 Old 03-20-2015, 08:50 PM Thread Starter
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Tom,
What outlet did you get the donor motor and supplemental parts from? Thanks for the encouragement!
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post #6 of 35 Old 03-20-2015, 08:58 PM
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Bafoonage,
I don't think Tom did either of the conversions.
He just knew where and how to find the links, For You.
Go to those sites, become a member, 'click' on the members Name, send them a PM (Private Message).
Have Fun!!!!!!

pdwestman
Modify at "YOUR OWN RISK"!

Still riding my 1987 KL650-A1. 85,000+ miles & counting
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post #7 of 35 Old 03-20-2015, 09:03 PM Thread Starter
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Understood, thanks!
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post #8 of 35 Old 03-20-2015, 09:30 PM
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If I could do work like that....

I can only dream.

Tom

Tom [email protected]

“On the way downtown I stopped at a bar and had a couple of double Scotches. They didn't do me any good. All they did was make me think of Silver-Wig, and I never saw her again.” -Philip Marlowe

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

Sting like a butterfly.
Noli Timere Messorem
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post #9 of 35 Old 03-26-2015, 08:15 AM Thread Starter
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Update, I worked on the bike quite a bit on Monday. Speedometer is working fine, somewhere along the line the front axle was reassembled without engaging the drive ears into the tab on the wheel. I straightened the speedometer drive and the system worked like a charm. Carb is spotless inside, air filter is beyond clogged which explains the popping and occasional backfiring. The intake valves are in spec (barely), the exhaust are about .05mm tighter than spec. Still no idea about the doohickey, I will tear it down when I have space to leave it apart. I still need to change the oil and filter. All in all I was really impressed with the whole bike, coming from small-mid displacement dirtbikes and high revving street bikes the torque this bike makes is very impressive. Even at 65 I found it very comfortable and the vib's did not bother me. With that said, I am debating nursing this engine back to life and using it until it gives out. For the kind of technical trail riding I often do don't think kawasaki could have designed a better engine for this bike, the slow manageable torque off the line really makes the bike a pleasure to ride. I plan to repaint the bike and plastics, maybe add a few farkles and just ride it. This summer I'll make some shorter range <250 mile trips to make sure it's up for the job then take off for the Keys! Is the rear suspension adjustable? How much air is recommended for the front forks? I'll have a service manual on the way shortly.
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post #10 of 35 Old 03-27-2015, 10:29 PM
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101 Mods! And counting! How do you keep Track of them, Normk?
Spread sheet on the garage wall? lol.
Do you have the Audiovox Cruise Control, like Ranger Ron yet? What is your hold-up? How about his multi-purpose electronic Fuel Gauge? I think his might count for SIX mods!

I like the Fact, that I may ride the 'stockest' 1987 KLR650-A1 still on the road!
I count 15 mods. SIX of them are oil flow related!

pdwestman
Modify at "YOUR OWN RISK"!

Still riding my 1987 KL650-A1. 85,000+ miles & counting
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