Deep Starter Shaft Idler hole on 2008 and 2009 bikes - Kawasaki KLR 650 Forum
2008+ KLR650 Wrenching & Mod Questions For repair, maintaining or modifying discussions related to the newly updated 2008 and beyond, Generation 2 KLR650 Motorcycle.

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post #1 of 39 Old 06-08-2011, 08:09 PM Thread Starter
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Deep Starter Shaft Idler hole on 2008 and 2009 bikes

20,800 motorcycles affected. ALL 2008 models, plus early 2009 models as well.

That got your attention, didn't it? Nothing like starting out with a bang. The bottom line: It appears that ALL 2008 models have the issue (that's around 15,500 bikes) and even the first 5,300 2009 models seem to be affected as well. If your frame VIN is 20802 or lower, keep reading.

The issue: Kawasaki mis-machined a hole in the generator cover which allows one of the shafts in the starter idler gear system to wander into the cover too far, where it is only supported on one side, not equally supported on both sides. See the attached diagrams. They have not recalled the bikes as it supposedly hasn’t been a safety issue but we’ve seen a few bikes where a thrust washer slipped into the crankcase or the engine block bushing gets corner-loaded and messed up. If I owned an 08 or an early 09, I’d fix it.

The details:

2008:
Kawasaki restarted the frame VINS at 00001 with the release of the 2008 bike. They also changed the generator cover for the 2008. It makes sense that if a blueprint error was made, it started with bike 00001. (We haven’t seen this issue on any of the 2007 or earlier bikes). Of all the data I've received on 2008 bikes so far, only one owner said he didn't have the deep hole, everyone else did have the problem. I'm going to suggest at present that they're ALL machined wrong, but occasionally, tolerances don't seem to allow the shaft to fall into the deeply-machined hole.
Everyone else who has gone in to check finds the issue. Since I see this issue continuing into the 2009 bikes, I'm going to say at present that ALL 2008's have the issue. The highest frame VIN I have for any 2008 model is 15,461... if yours is higher, please PM me.

2009:
Kawasaki continued on with the same VIN numbering scheme as the 2009's were a continuation of 2008. The lowest 2009 VIN I have in the KLR Timeline so far is 15,896. If your 2009 VIN is below 15,896, please PM me. We also have 100% "deep hole syndrome" quoted on all VINS up through 20749, then my next data points (starting with VIN 20,803 and higher) always report that things are good. We just need more data from the guys between 20,749 and 20,803 to see if it simply strikes at one VIN number.

The fix: You have to pull the outer cover (but not the rotor!) to place a spacer in the generator cover hole. Eagle Mike includes a spacer in his doo kits for this purpose, as you'll have the bike past this stage of disassembly to change your doo. You can also use a 3/8” set screw or a 3/8” ball bearing from your local hardware store.

Hope this helps.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Deep Sketch.jpg (172.8 KB, 221 views)
File Type: jpg VINplot.jpg (42.8 KB, 164 views)
File Type: jpg Deep Hole.jpg (87.8 KB, 228 views)

Watt-man

'04 KLR650, 172,000 Miles
still on original piston, rings, entire top end. Just an Eagle doohickey, torsion spring and a Thermo-Bob, of course!

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Last edited by Watt-man; 06-24-2011 at 01:14 AM.
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post #2 of 39 Old 06-08-2011, 08:45 PM
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Well as I have jealously look on at all of your new bikes….. I am in love with my 1997 KLR..
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post #3 of 39 Old 06-08-2011, 09:24 PM
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Bill -

Good to have you back.

Thanks for the detail on the deep-hole issue. That'll be something for us to take care of at tech day.

Thermo on!

T

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post #4 of 39 Old 06-09-2011, 03:04 PM
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One more thing to take care of once I get back back on my bike. Thanks for reminding me.

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post #5 of 39 Old 06-09-2011, 04:43 PM
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Where is the frame VIN?
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post #6 of 39 Old 06-09-2011, 04:45 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by basement View Post
Where is the frame VIN?
It can be found on a sticker that is affixed to the right side of the steering head. The last 5 digits of the 17 digit number are what you're looking for. This VIN starts with "JKAKLE"......

Watt-man

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still on original piston, rings, entire top end. Just an Eagle doohickey, torsion spring and a Thermo-Bob, of course!

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post #7 of 39 Old 06-23-2011, 11:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Schmitz View Post
Bill -


Thanks for the detail on the deep-hole issue. That'll be something for us to take care of at tech day.


T
Did any of this go down at techdaze? If so, what was used for the fix? The set screw or the 3/8 bearing? Thanks...

08 KLR
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post #8 of 39 Old 06-23-2011, 11:50 PM
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Awesome. Go Kawasaki.




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post #9 of 39 Old 06-23-2011, 11:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matter View Post
Did any of this go down at techdaze? If so, what was used for the fix? The set screw or the 3/8 bearing? Thanks...
Nothing at tech day.

I'm going to pull my case off and throw one of my 3/8" balls in there. I've no further use for them...

T

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“The kid poured him another straight rye and I think he doctored it with water down behind the bar because when he came up with it he looked as guilty as if he'd kicked his grandmother.” -Philip Marlowe

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

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post #10 of 39 Old 06-24-2011, 09:11 AM
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Cleared with the wife?
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