chain tightness variation - 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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  • 1 Post By Damocles
  • 1 Post By Norton 850
  • 1 Post By pdwestman
 
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post #1 of 10 Old 03-21-2019, 10:22 PM Thread Starter
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chain tightness variation

There seems to be a large variation in change tightness from its most tight location to its loosest location on my 2013. Chain is within its stretch limits and nothing seems out of round or warped. Bike only has 5000 miles on it and sprockets and chain look good. Chain tensioners are equivalent on both sides of bike. I have adjusted the chain in the most tight position per the instructions. It has not caused any issues but worries me nonetheless. Any thoughts? Is this the nature of the bird?
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post #2 of 10 Old 03-22-2019, 04:20 AM
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Looser better than tighter. Too tight, and . . . suspension compression tension may compromise shaft seals, accelerate chain and sprocket wear.

If you adjust within specifications, fear not. I'd suggest favoring the loose end of the envelope.

The absolute, sure-fire, zero error chain tension procedure involves compressing suspension to maximum dimension between drive and driven chain sprocket center lines, and adjusting chain just snug at that point. Suspension can be compressed with ratchet straps, or by disconnecting shock/spring assembly from frame.

(My opinion/perception only above; alternate, corrective, and clarifying comments welcomed!)
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post #3 of 10 Old 03-22-2019, 08:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Damocles View Post
Looser better than tighter. Too tight, and . . . suspension compression tension may compromise shaft seals, accelerate chain and sprocket wear.

If you adjust within specifications, fear not. I'd suggest favoring the loose end of the envelope.
I agree, looser is better than tighter. The correct chain adjustment for these bikes is deceptively loose. I adjust the chain such that with the rear shock fully extended,
it will just touch the rear of the plastic rub-strip located on the swing arm when pushing the chain up with your finger.

Best,

Jason
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post #4 of 10 Old 03-22-2019, 09:45 AM
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I also agree with what Damocles & Norton 850 said.

The chain should be slack enough to easily be lifted to touch the rubber under-slider. Should not have to force it.

Many rear sprockets are not perfectly concentric, a few thousands off-center can make quite a difference.
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post #5 of 10 Old 03-23-2019, 12:52 AM
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Personally, I hate adjusting my chain tension. It seems that the amount of flex changes every time I measure it during the adjusting process. I measure the flex of the chain at the center point between the front and rear sprocket. I usually use one of the pins on that center link as my measuring mark. The amount of flex is measures significantly differently between the front and rear pins on that single center link.

I believe the Pdwestman's advice. I have checked it using a measuring tape. Following that advice leaves the flex at about 42 mm. The manual suggests the flex should be between 35 mm-45 mm (25 mm is about an inch)
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post #6 of 10 Old 03-27-2019, 05:48 PM
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On my bike after full compression to the tightest /swingarm straight in alignment spot. I'm at 2-1/8" to 2-1/4"slack.
As to the post... Yeah chains can be funny as to tight and loose spots. Depending on moisture/rust sprocket and chain wear etc.
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post #7 of 10 Old 03-27-2019, 06:00 PM
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[quote=timberfoot;681285.

I believe the Pdwestman's advice. I have checked it using a measuring tape. Following that advice leaves the flex at about 42 mm. The manual suggests the flex should be between 35 mm-45 mm (25 mm is about an inch)[/QUOTE]

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jettn Jim View Post
On my bike after full compression to the tightest /swingarm straight in alignment spot. I'm at 2-1/8" to 2-1/4"slack.
As to the post... Yeah chains can be funny as to tight and loose spots. Depending on moisture/rust sprocket and chain wear etc.
The discrepancy between timberfoots measurement & Jettn Jims measurement is possibly accounted for because of the approximate 1" difference in the extended suspension travel of a Gen 1 vs a Gen 2.

Which model are you riding, Jettn Jim? I'm pretty certain timberfoot is riding a Gen 2.

But the lift to touch the rear tip of the under-slider works on both. Possibly because the rubber under-sliders are of 2 different lengths?

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post #8 of 10 Old 03-29-2019, 10:58 AM
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I've got a Gen 1 with a Gen 2 swingarm and a Cogent Moab shock. 18" rear wheel.
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post #9 of 10 Old 03-29-2019, 11:01 AM
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I like to get the swing arm and sprockets straight... Then adjust for 1/2" slack.
That for me equals the 2-1/8" to 2-1/4" slack on the side stand.
Yrmv.
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post #10 of 10 Old 03-29-2019, 11:02 AM
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I get 10,000 to 12,000 miles on sunstar sprockets and a good DID chain.
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