Sprocket gearing question. - Kawasaki KLR 650 Forum
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post #1 of 6 Old 06-04-2016, 08:09 PM Thread Starter
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Sprocket gearing question.

Sprocket gearing question

When I ride paved-back roads in the 30 mph to 40 mph range, I am constantly shifting between 5 th & 4 th. ( Slight up - down grades.)
30 mph in 5 th is to low, and 4 th seems like I'm revving to high.

Would going to a 16 tooth front allow me to run in 4 th at 30 - 35 mph with out it revving to much?
OR
Would going to a 14 tooth front allow me to run in 5 th at 30 - 35 mph with out lugging to much.

I know some of you like to keep your revs up there. I just want to cruse along at my comfortable speed with out any stress on the engine. This is mostly on level ground at constant speed. If I come to much of a grade, I don't mind shifting down, or up until I get back on level going again.

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post #2 of 6 Old 06-04-2016, 08:15 PM
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I think, if you go to a 16-tooth countershaft sprocket, your rpm will be 15/16 what it was with a 15-tooth countershaft sprocket.

Correction invited!
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post #3 of 6 Old 06-04-2016, 08:50 PM
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If you never or very little highway riding, i would go 14 tooth, more low-end for the off-road times.

"Things are made out of Stuff"
Bill Nye~

"Singularity is a scientific term for - We Just Don't Know"
Neil DeGrasse Tyson~

(2011 KLR)
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post #4 of 6 Old 06-04-2016, 09:12 PM
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Larry31,
My suggestion is to run stock gearing and ignore everything else!!
You could change DOWN to a 14 tooth and use 5th gear more often.
You could change UP to a 16 tooth and use 4th gear more often.

I choose to insert ear plugs and let my "ass" and 45+ years of riding experience 'tell me', When To Shift! Up or Down!

The KLR engine will NOT care which way that you decide to go!!
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post #5 of 6 Old 06-05-2016, 01:06 PM Thread Starter
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Gearing?

Thanks guys! What prompted this was that yesterday I was following a GL1800 that pulls like a tractor in 5th gear. The guy leading was going between 30 and 40 on back roads. He would slow to 30, and I'd have to shift down. Then he would go up to 40, and I felt like I should go up to 5th to keep from hearing my engine rev.

You are right, that I should have just put my ear plugs in, and run in 4th. ( Fat-dumb-and-happy! )

Alternative: Just ride with other KLR's, or alone which suits me fine. I do favor stock for my style of riding. When I ride these same back roads, I run in 4th at 30 - 35 mph. That's my relaxed speed to just "smell-the-roses" or Cow poop on the fields.

Hmm, wonder how fast Eagle Mike can get me that drive chain?

Ageing Gracefully



2017 Yamaha XT250
1990 Honda NX250 (Green/White)
2011 Kawasaki KLR 650 (Orange & White )

My KLR Page..http://www.powers31.info/2011_KLR650.htm

Mod's to KLR:
Power socket, L.E.D. Battery Indicator, Camera bag holder
Custom Saddlebag frames .
Louder horns, Firstgear Onyx tail bag.
Custom Aluminum Skid Plate.
Cut down seat with Custom pad.
Go Pro Camera mount.
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post #6 of 6 Old 06-06-2016, 05:34 AM
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There really is no reason to be in 5th at 30 mph. I have only changed my sprocket to a 16t because I tend to stay at higher speeds when moving between gravel. Don't need a 16 and I might change back to stock, probably will. TBH, I see no reason to do 30 mph on gravel, fiddy + is more like it. So many folks are concerned about engine damage with "higher" rpms. As long as not near or in the red it won't matter one bit. Engines are designed for such "high" rpms.

FWIW, I have been forced, shift lever broke, to go 55-60 mph on gravel, in 2nd gear, for 30 miles at around 6k rpm. Absolutely no issues, got better mpg than my buddy with a dr 650 in 5th gear (we were both shocked), no overheating, etc....

I rode 300 miles of gravel yesterday and I like to keep the rpms up a bit. No sense lugging at all anywhere in gravel. I did tend to keep the mph at 55-70 though so no lugging anyway. Maybe you should jump in front of the wing and do 55 and show him how it is done.

Also, FWIW, lugging the engine IS putting stress on the motor, not "high" rpms!

'01 KLR 650, '09 Suzuki DL650, '08 Suzuki Bandit 1250, '16 CRF1000L, '09 KLX 250s
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