How easily are fork tubes bent? Hit a deer. - 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 3 Old 11-02-2018, 04:56 PM Thread Starter
2nd Gear
Join Date: Jun 2018
Posts: 116
I realize this is all speculation. 2015 KLR650. Unfortunately I tagged an approx. 100 to 110 pound doe this week coming home from work at night. I got it slowed down to around 30 when I hit the front shoulder area with the front wheel. The rest of it impacted the left side panel and broke it along with the supporting parts underneath before it got sucked under by the swing arm and rear wheel. Amazingly I stayed on although the bike gave a big wiggle and the rear end kicked up as we went over the bulk of the body. Obviously a deer is primarily water and has a lot of “give” to it compared to curbs, trees etc. For the first time I was happy to have the extra heft of the KLR as well as the big fairings as they protected my leg. I’m guessing a true modern dual sport with a stiffer chassis, less weight and no fairing would probably have gone down and my leg would have taken the hit. Yes I realize that It could have been much much worse and I thank God it wasn’t. Your thoughts on what I should look for?
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post #2 of 3 Old 11-02-2018, 06:52 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Redondo Beach
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I would get the bike up on a lift with the front wheel off the ground, stand back and look at it. Look for a bend in the fork tubes toward the back. Look at the line from the fork caps to the end of the sliders. You can see a lot with your eyes. If you don't see any obvious damage you can move to the next phase.

Remove the wheel. Using a couple of yardsticks or dowels, place one across the tubes up near the triple tree. Of course, stuff will need to come off to do this. Place the other down across the sliders. Sight down them and look for a twist in the forks. If the forks are straight, as above, the twist is easy to take out by loosening the triple tree bolts and tweaking the fork with a bar or (reassembled) against a solid object. I used a convenient telephone pole in Napa a few years ago. Place the tire against the object and turn it into the object with the handlebars. Sight down for a twist, repeat as required.

If there is no twist, ride it at various speeds. Check for normal handling.

Last and most extreme, to check for tweakage you can't see, get the bike up on the lift again. Remove the front wheel, speedometer cable, and brake caliper. Remove the fork cap without putting your eye out from the spring behind it. Each fork slider should slide up the fork tube with relative ease unless it is bent.

If you want, you could just do the third step first and give it the Marty Feldman "Looks good to me!" if it rides OK.

Will you be making sausage?

Tom [email protected]

“Some days I feel like playing it smooth. Some days I feel like playing it like a waffle iron.” -Philip Marlowe

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

Sting like a butterfly.
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post #3 of 3 Old 11-02-2018, 11:55 PM Thread Starter
2nd Gear
Join Date: Jun 2018
Posts: 116
No sausage haha. She laid there heaving then got up scrambling/stumbling. Looked like a right front injury but no obvious fracture. It moved off the road and fell again. I looked away to check my bike for damage and when I looked back she was gone. I was armed and considered shooting it but it was in front of a house at 12:30 am. Wasn’t happy about the damage to my bike but I still didn’t want to see it suffer.
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