I'm having problems with head shake at 70-80 miles an hour or over. I have the 685 kit with Avon dual sport tires. I have tightened the head bearing but I don't believe that the standard roller bearings will tighten up enough to stop the head shake.
Does anyone here know where I might get tapered bearings for my triple tree? Other than that, I guess my next step would be a fork brace. I had a fork brace on my 2000 and my '06 but I thought maybe the front end of this
'09, being stiffer, might not need a fork brace. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
If you are confident that your head bearings aren't loose, they may not be the problem. I think they are the red headed step child of the front end issues we have....don't know whats going on up there, so lets blame the head bearings...
Head shake isn't limited to KLR's, and the diagnosis is as controversial as the second coming of Christ. The KLR has some designed in tendencies for head shake / vibration / tank slapper activity. Its tall, top heavy, usually with tires designed for non-asphalt traction. Now add the owner's tendency to bolt on shit that is heavy [skid plates, crash bars, tool tubes, tank bags, tank panniers, 47 electronic gadgets on the handlebar, a taller windshield, bigger handguards], all on a stock suspension, or with a new and improved suspension designed for Dakar, not US 129.
You may have a tire inappropriate for the asphalt you ride on. Not a bad tire, just not the right one for where YOU ride. Asphalt ain't the same everywhere. Watch for asphalt mix design changes at the county lines, state lines, and state district lines. This has effected the handling of my motorcycles.
Biggest culprit I've found for at speed handling issues hasn't been deficiencies of the front end components....its been from stuff hanging off the back of the bike. Tail bags / boxes, saddlebags, even rider seating position. Sometimes just sliding forward an inch or so can change handling.
There is little that is more unnerving than having a motorcycle that might pitch you when you least expect it. Or even if you do expect it. I hope you get a solution soon and safely.