I would like to lower my klr a couple inches if easily possible... - Kawasaki KLR 650 Forum
1987 to 2007 Wrenching & Mods For maintaining, repair or modifications of Generation 1 KLR's. 2007 and earlier.

 7Likes
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 32 Old 03-15-2017, 08:24 PM Thread Starter
1st Gear
 
Join Date: Mar 2017
Posts: 49
I would like to lower my klr a couple inches if easily possible...

I see there are seats that might be ok to lower maybe 1.5 inches. Maybe I can do a seat and also lower the suspension maybe another inch. I've read that I'll need to do something with the front forks like drop the tree. I see some 1.5" lowering dog bones on ebay so maybe there isn't 1" ones. I was googling for some how toos but maybe there is a guide I can search here somewhere. I'm only 5'8" so I'm kinda on my tippy toes =/. My 6'2" friend's suzuki dr650 is a few inches shorter than mine but I think that stock has the ability to drop lower. I need to drop some pounds off it also. Maybe the exhaust is the single biggest weight loss I can do quickly. Thanks everyone. I know I'm posting a million times since I'm a noob with the KLR

Edit: I read the front forks can be lowered only 1.25" so if I do the rear shock 1.5" I'm thinking this shouldn't be too much of an issue. Too bad they don't make a rear 1.25" dog bone to keep them matched perfectly. I realize the rear spring will extend more so it will be softer. Does anyone know roughly what I should increase the preload to after doing the lowering? I wonder if the dampening would need to be adjusted also, maybe not so much. I did see how both of those were done on some videos.

Last edited by jeffrimerman; 03-15-2017 at 09:33 PM.
jeffrimerman is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 32 Old 03-15-2017, 10:47 PM
4th Gear
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Kelowna, B.C.
Posts: 2,263
Lots of questions there! LOL

OK;

- 1) What year KLR?

- 2) Eaglemike makes the best lowering links; he makes two sizes and how much they lower the bike depends on what year you bike is; Gen2's have factory longer links (lower) than Gen1's. I'll post the chart tomorrow as I have it saved on my other computer.

- 3) the forks can be lowered in infinite increments to match the rear (up to a certain point where they hit your bars)

- 4) The lowering links work by increasing leverage on the stock shock which effectively reduces both the springrate AND damping.......how much of a problem this is depends on your weight, usage and what year your bike is. You will definitely have to increase preload and damping settings after installing the lowering links to maintain your previous settings....at the very least.

- 5) I always recommend a lower seat and taller boots before going the lowering route.......or if you need more then do those other things and lower it less.


As far as weight goes, many people spend a bunch of time and effort to make a truly light KLR and they always fail; certain things (like the 125lb motor) are what they are. That said there is some "low hanging fruit" which are the silencer (5-6 lbs), the battery (up to 9 lbs) and misc. unnecessary bits like the passenger pegs and brackets (2.5 lbs) .....all in all, I've managed to pare off 20-25 lbs; beyond that you get into diminishing returns. BTW, my son is 5'9" and rides a stock height Gen1 KLR with sag set properly but he has years of offroad experience......you can adapt. All that said, the KLR is tall and heavy and isn't for everyone.

hope this helped.

Dave

On edit; I see this is posted in the Gen1 wrenching forums (I was checking recent posts and didn't notice) so the year is no longer relevant. I'll post the dogbone length chart in the morning.
DPelletier is offline  
post #3 of 32 Old 03-16-2017, 02:39 AM Thread Starter
1st Gear
 
Join Date: Mar 2017
Posts: 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by DPelletier View Post
Lots of questions there! LOL

OK;

- 1) What year KLR?

- 2) Eaglemike makes the best lowering links; he makes two sizes and how much they lower the bike depends on what year you bike is; Gen2's have factory longer links (lower) than Gen1's. I'll post the chart tomorrow as I have it saved on my other computer.

- 3) the forks can be lowered in infinite increments to match the rear (up to a certain point where they hit your bars)

- 4) The lowering links work by increasing leverage on the stock shock which effectively reduces both the springrate AND damping.......how much of a problem this is depends on your weight, usage and what year your bike is. You will definitely have to increase preload and damping settings after installing the lowering links to maintain your previous settings....at the very least.

- 5) I always recommend a lower seat and taller boots before going the lowering route.......or if you need more then do those other things and lower it less.


As far as weight goes, many people spend a bunch of time and effort to make a truly light KLR and they always fail; certain things (like the 125lb motor) are what they are. That said there is some "low hanging fruit" which are the silencer (5-6 lbs), the battery (up to 9 lbs) and misc. unnecessary bits like the passenger pegs and brackets (2.5 lbs) .....all in all, I've managed to pare off 20-25 lbs; beyond that you get into diminishing returns. BTW, my son is 5'9" and rides a stock height Gen1 KLR with sag set properly but he has years of offroad experience......you can adapt. All that said, the KLR is tall and heavy and isn't for everyone.

hope this helped.

Dave

On edit; I see this is posted in the Gen1 wrenching forums (I was checking recent posts and didn't notice) so the year is no longer relevant. I'll post the dogbone length chart in the morning.
1) Thanks for noticing. I was wondering if all Gen 1 were the same.

2) I did read that EagleMike did make the best billet aluminum ones.

3) I wonder if that's what another article meant by 1.25" as in the distant to hit or come really close.

4) I can start by whatever the setting was before increasing by 1 incremental unit and see.

5) One seat claimed 1-2" which might be all I need.

I noticed the Honda and Suzuki were so much lighter there really is no catching up since we have water cooling. Not much we can do about that. I didn't realize the battery could save so much. I'll check that out. This helped a lot Dave. I appreciate your time.

Sincerely,
Jeff
DPelletier likes this.

Last edited by jeffrimerman; 03-16-2017 at 02:42 AM.
jeffrimerman is offline  
 
post #4 of 32 Old 03-16-2017, 09:11 AM
2nd Gear
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Posts: 335
Jeff, I'm about your size. I too was thrown off by the height of the KLR. After a couple days of owning it, I immediately ordered some crash bars, knowing at the least I might slip and tip over the bike. Then I found myself looking at lowered seats. I always wore thick soled boots to give me that extra lift, and when moving the klr around, I always scooted up to the front of the seat to give me just a little more. I always parked in a place that I did not have to back out of. After time, it was all second nature. If you attempt to adapt to the height, you will find yourself comfortable in time. And leaving all that added benefit of the ground clearance the KLR has to offer.
Back2Kawi is offline  
post #5 of 32 Old 03-16-2017, 09:54 AM
4th Gear
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Kelowna, B.C.
Posts: 2,263
Dogbone Chart;



Dave
DPelletier is offline  
post #6 of 32 Old 03-16-2017, 12:08 PM
OverDrive
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Lander, Wyoming
Posts: 5,329
The fork tubes will pass Un-bent stock handlebars of either generation, 1 or 2.

But always be careful and aware that the front tire may contact the front fender when you least need that to happen. Chuck hole, cross-rut or even a water drainage at an intersection in town.

pdwestman
Modify at "YOUR OWN RISK"!

Still riding my 1987 KL650-A1. 84,000+ miles & counting
pdwestman is offline  
post #7 of 32 Old 03-16-2017, 12:49 PM
4th Gear
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Kelowna, B.C.
Posts: 2,263
Quote:
Originally Posted by pdwestman View Post

But always be careful and aware that the front tire may contact the front fender when you least need that to happen. Chuck hole, cross-rut or even a water drainage at an intersection in town.
That's a great point and one I've raised in the past. IIRC, after I had raised the concern, somebody checked to see where the fork bottomed vs. contact with the fender and ascertained that you could lower the fork and still not contact the fender but unfortunately, I don't remember the amount (1"?) or whether it was a 1st or second Gen. It would also depend on the tire too, of course.

.....maybe a future experiment.

Dave
DPelletier is offline  
post #8 of 32 Old 03-16-2017, 01:37 PM Thread Starter
1st Gear
 
Join Date: Mar 2017
Posts: 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Back2Kawi View Post
Jeff, I'm about your size. I too was thrown off by the height of the KLR. After a couple days of owning it, I immediately ordered some crash bars, knowing at the least I might slip and tip over the bike. Then I found myself looking at lowered seats. I always wore thick soled boots to give me that extra lift, and when moving the klr around, I always scooted up to the front of the seat to give me just a little more. I always parked in a place that I did not have to back out of. After time, it was all second nature. If you attempt to adapt to the height, you will find yourself comfortable in time. And leaving all that added benefit of the ground clearance the KLR has to offer.
Did you end up getting a lowered seat? That seems like the best thing if I only need about 1.5" without messing with the suspension. I just don't want to have too much monkey butt if you know what that is.

I don't think I would do more than 1.5" to drop so I should be ok with the front fender but I will keep that in mind. I'm going to bid on some used ebay seats =).
jeffrimerman is offline  
post #9 of 32 Old 03-16-2017, 01:58 PM
2nd Gear
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Posts: 335
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffrimerman View Post
Did you end up getting a lowered seat? That seems like the best thing if I only need about 1.5" without messing with the suspension. I just don't want to have too much monkey butt if you know what that is.

I don't think I would do more than 1.5" to drop so I should be ok with the front fender but I will keep that in mind. I'm going to bid on some used ebay seats =).
Nope! I got use to the bike over time. But if I down right couldn't live with the bike at that height, then I would have gone with a lower seat all day long over lowering the actual bike. Personally like I said earlier, give yourself some time to adjust to the ride height, if you can in a safely manner. If you find you just can't adjust over a couple months or so then drop some coin on a lower seat.
pdwestman and DPelletier like this.
Back2Kawi is offline  
post #10 of 32 Old 03-16-2017, 04:38 PM
OverDrive
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Lander, Wyoming
Posts: 5,329
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffrimerman View Post
Did you end up getting a lowered seat? That seems like the best thing if I only need about 1.5" without messing with the suspension. I just don't want to have too much monkey butt if you know what that is.

I don't think I would do more than 1.5" to drop so I should be ok with the front fender but I will keep that in mind. I'm going to bid on some used ebay seats =).
Jeff,
I doubt that there is a motorcyclist alive that Doesn't Know what monkey butt is, even they simply call it "chapped a**"!

You haven't told us your actual leg length or your weight, both are more relevant than 5'8".

The Gen 1 bikes did stand on taller/longer travel suspension, but it was softer than the Gen 2.
The seat of the Gen 1 is/was actually softer than the 2008-2014.5 Gen 2 also.
The seat and the suspension of the 2014.5+ is firmer/stiffer yet.

If you can purchase a Used Gen 2 2008-2014.5 stock seat and cut it down 2.0 inches to look like a mid-'80's sport bike seat(Google 1984 Ninja 900), it should work pretty well due to the slightly firmer foam.

ps,(Google 1988 Ninja 600R for an even deeper looking seat)

pdwestman
Modify at "YOUR OWN RISK"!

Still riding my 1987 KL650-A1. 84,000+ miles & counting

Last edited by pdwestman; 03-16-2017 at 05:17 PM. Reason: ps added
pdwestman is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the Kawasaki KLR 650 Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
5 foot 6 inches and buying advice Ramsesdelasamoa23 KLR & Other Motorcycle Related Discussion 16 02-18-2017 10:43 AM
Easily dumbest question of day - helmet lock KenF Bike and Rider Gear 12 05-27-2016 11:06 PM
Lower Subframe loose on 04 KLR? Lizardrider 1987 to 2007 Wrenching & Mods 5 03-20-2011 08:41 PM
help lower my klr 250 Young182 1987 to 2007 Wrenching & Mods 12 08-19-2009 08:02 PM
Whats the best combo to lower a KLR? Gitrdun 1987 to 2007 Wrenching & Mods 3 08-10-2007 10:24 AM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome