another front fender question - Kawasaki KLR 650 Forum
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post #1 of 11 Old 06-14-2012, 03:45 PM Thread Starter
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another front fender question

OK I beleive i am suffering from the same problems I have read on this and other forums about the front fender on the 08 and newer KLR's acting like a sail at speeds of 70mph or more. I don't make it a habit to ride the highway slabs much but sometimes on my commutes to and from work i will hit some stretches depending on route I take where i will hit 70 plus mph. Sometimes it does it sometimes it does not. I have 2011 model with about 1500 miles. So I doubt head steering bearings are the prob. The tires are stock and correct tire pressure. I am assuming they are balanced correctly but I get the dreaded wobble at speeds sometimes. Starts to feel like the bike wants to go into a tank slapper. A couple times real bad where i had to either accelerate as fast as I could or slow down too much having vehicle behind me get up on my butt. Other times I get going near 80 and no problem. So Im hoping its just the front fender issue. Im either gonna modify this fender or get an aftermarket because it just plain sucks that I gotta wonder if its going or not going to happen when Im on the highway. I have read that some folks have no problem at all at speeds. So maybe which way the wind is blowing makes all the difference??
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post #2 of 11 Old 06-14-2012, 04:16 PM
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I doubt its the fender. Remove it and go for a ride and see.

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post #3 of 11 Old 06-14-2012, 04:19 PM
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I don't seem to share this experience at any of the speeds you mentioned. I'm new to KLRs but not riding. I'm running a superbrace and front spring upgrade but they were on the bike when I got it. I'd be interested to hear from those who have before and after experiences with either of those mods.
I'm used to high speeds on an HD but I don't feel like runnin much past 80 on mine anyway.
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post #4 of 11 Old 06-14-2012, 05:31 PM Thread Starter
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well 80 is about all ive pushed it to for short periods. Ive read so much that I believe it is the fender but Ill take it off and give that a whirl. I only notice it on the highway> not so much backroads where there are no other cars and and plenty of trees and such that block a lot of crosswinds, but a lot of turbulance on the highway with the big rigs and cars doing warp speed around ya. ill try taking the fender off and report back but... well im into a second beer after work sitting in the sun by the pool so that will have to wait. lol
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post #5 of 11 Old 06-14-2012, 05:39 PM
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Make sure the fender bolts are tight for starters maybe?

I don't think it should be doing that. My First Gen is solid at those speeds with the stock fender and a Eagle Mike Fork Brace. The second Gen forks were upgraded from the first gen weren't they? While I don't know if a fork brace helps the second Gen KLR's maybe it would help your situation?

What about tire inflation? Is the front tire low? The do need to be checked frequently and the PSI maintained.

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post #6 of 11 Old 06-14-2012, 06:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ammca View Post
OK I beleive i am suffering from the same problems I have read on this and other forums about the front fender on the 08 and newer KLR's acting like a sail at speeds of 70mph or more. I don't make it a habit to ride the highway slabs much but sometimes on my commutes to and from work i will hit some stretches depending on route I take where i will hit 70 plus mph. Sometimes it does it sometimes it does not. I have 2011 model with about 1500 miles. So I doubt head steering bearings are the prob. The tires are stock and correct tire pressure. I am assuming they are balanced correctly but I get the dreaded wobble at speeds sometimes. Starts to feel like the bike wants to go into a tank slapper. A couple times real bad where i had to either accelerate as fast as I could or slow down too much having vehicle behind me get up on my butt. Other times I get going near 80 and no problem. So Im hoping its just the front fender issue. Im either gonna modify this fender or get an aftermarket because it just plain sucks that I gotta wonder if its going or not going to happen when Im on the highway. I have read that some folks have no problem at all at speeds. So maybe which way the wind is blowing makes all the difference??

Check your steering stem bearings. I changed the OEM front because the bike had a nervous feeling behind trucks and front quarting type crosswinds. Never did feel like it was going into a tank slapper.

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post #7 of 11 Old 06-15-2012, 12:20 AM
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I don't know what's causing your problem, but I've been a nonbeliever in the "GenII Front Fender Sail Effect" since I first heard about it and always will be. I ride mine at higher speeds around other traffic all the time, although only about 75 indicated tops and get tossed around a little behind larger vehicles, but I've never had any kind of wobble.

My belief is that the area of the front fender, even if it is a poor aerodynamic design (and I really doubt that) is just not enough to contribute to major instability like you and others have described. If it were the case, there would be a lot more complaints.

It's not like some weird mechanical issue that might arise with certain KLR's and not others. There's no way a "poorly designed" GenII front fender would seem a real problem to some while others don't consider it a problem at all.

I recommend you check into some of the probable causes that others have listed above and not concentrate on the fender because I don't think that's your problem. I wish you luck in diagnosing and fixing it.



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post #8 of 11 Old 06-15-2012, 12:37 AM
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had similuar problems..

but pulled wheel off an check, make sure it's balanced !!

sounds like same thing ,, with my first gen 1,, shorlty after buying -used 5540miles- ,,was riding it home hit highway,,said to myshelf "what will this puppy do" so i hit the gas an from 70-80+ wobble ,, faster ya go ,,it got worse ,, almost tank slapper,depens on the type road too..

but yes ,,just some simple, rim weights fixed the problem...
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post #9 of 11 Old 06-15-2012, 09:15 AM
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I get yanked around in the wind quite abit when on the KLR. It's not the front fender so much as it is a "lighter" bike with all that front fairing for the wind to "grab" onto. When I take out another bike on the same day in the same conditions it cuts right thru the wind.
I have recently installed a different front fender for cosmetics and haven't noticed any difference.

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post #10 of 11 Old 06-15-2012, 10:11 AM
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Took fender off and mine quit wobble
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