How do you know when your chain is loose? - Kawasaki KLR 650 Forum
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post #1 of 10 Old 10-02-2011, 10:16 AM Thread Starter
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How do you know when your chain is loose?

Hi all, this is my first KLR or dual sport of any type. When I first got my bike home a few months ago, I was shocked to see how loose the chain was. Ater pressing chains of other dual sports and other KLRs they all seemed a bit more loose than my old bikes (old Brit bikes). I know that they should be looser because of the MX style swing arm for travel but, when accelerating I hear a "shchhhhhhhhhhhh" sound which I am unsure if that's normal? I may be hyper sensitive since it is a newer bike with only 2200 miles.

My clymer book says to touch/press midway between sprockets for a measurement of like (guessing now???) 1"-1.5" of play but I cannot figure out if it's play from top of the link or bottom. Is this a high use issue where newer bikes being broke in have a natural loosening of the chain? Anyone have a KLR chain video on the forum/you tube?


Thx from a total KLR newb
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post #2 of 10 Old 10-02-2011, 10:51 AM
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I think this is a pretty good guide. Adjusters might be different depending on what year you have.

http://germz.org/klr650/chain-tension.html



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post #3 of 10 Old 10-02-2011, 11:43 AM Thread Starter
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Excellent!

Thank you so much
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post #4 of 10 Old 10-03-2011, 01:30 PM
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Clymer manual gives generic chain slack for a street bike. I remember FSM specs 1.6-1.8 inches of slack.
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post #5 of 10 Old 10-03-2011, 04:04 PM
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I just adjust mine to where when I lift up the chain, the bottom of it almost touches the rubber slider on the bottom of the swingarm, maybe the width of a pencil away from it. When it gets to where the chain will touch the slider when I lift it, I'll tighten it again.

"Measurements" made with the KLR sitting on its sidestand.



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post #6 of 10 Old 10-03-2011, 07:32 PM
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I do the same as Planalp, it should almost touch the bottom of the swingarm. IMO, a little loose is better than a little tight.

Bill
W6BJD

2009 KLR650, black (the fastest color), Moose luggage racks - Happy Trail skid plate, crash bars, engine guard, highway pegs, and fork brace - IMS Pro footpegs - Dynojet stage 2 jet kit - Airbox mod - WOW led tail light - Top Gun 7.4Kg rear spring - Top Gun Progressive front springs - ThermoBob - Temp overlay
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post #7 of 10 Old 10-03-2011, 08:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2handedSpey View Post
My clymer book says to touch/press midway between sprockets for a measurement of like (guessing now???) 1"-1.5" of play but I cannot figure out if it's play from top of the link or bottom. Is this a high use issue where newer bikes being broke in have a natural loosening of the chain?
My Clymers ('08 - '09) says to measure at that same midway point:
"Press the chain down and note where the chain link-pin aligns with the tape measure. Note the measurement."
"Push the chain up and note where the same link-pin aligns with the tape. Note the measurement."
"The difference between the two measurements is the chain play."


That way you would be measuring from the same center spot on the same chain link-pin (not the top or bottom).
The adjustment table says 1.38" to 1.77" of play.
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post #8 of 10 Old 10-11-2011, 02:24 AM
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Keep the chain slack on the loose side since the chain will tighten up as the swingarm is collapsed. There are some recommendation here that I will try myself. For my measurement with the bike resting on the kickstand: I pull up about midway on the lower section and take a measurement on the top part of the link on the tape measure, then pull down on the chain and measure the same link on the top side and subtract the difference for the slack. I try keep it bewteen 1.5 and 2.0 inches.

Ron
09 KLR
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post #9 of 10 Old 10-14-2011, 11:11 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks guys. I really appreciated the help
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post #10 of 10 Old 10-15-2011, 09:12 AM
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I sit on the bike, compressing the suspension, thus putting the chain at the most stretched position.. I reach down and check for about 1/2" of play with my left hand..

If that's what I have, I'm happy and my chain is neither too tight, nor too loose..
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