New question, the Air box - Page 3 - 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 #21 of 40 Old 08-07-2019, 08:28 PM
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"don't bother with the little 1" foam filters if you drill the holes - they are useless. "

Great information. I won't argue that the little 1" foam filters have any performance benefit at all, but the ones I have used in the past have a plastic cross hatch in front of the foam that serve as an effective mouse barrier. If you live in the country you have mice, that's just a fact of life. Every available hole in your bike is a potential invitation for them to come in a build a nest and feast on your wires and other tasty bits like your foam filter etc. I even keep a plug in my exhaust when the bike is parked in my shop and have sonic pest repellents in a few of my electrical outlets as well as various traps and other deterrents. Mostly the mice just mock me by leaving the occasional well placed turd on my tail rack so that I know they are watching me.
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post #22 of 40 Old 08-08-2019, 09:42 AM
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Originally Posted by VTWoodchuck View Post
"don't bother with the little 1" foam filters if you drill the holes - they are useless. "

Great information. I won't argue that the little 1" foam filters have any performance benefit at all, but the ones I have used in the past have a plastic cross hatch in front of the foam that serve as an effective mouse barrier. If you live in the country you have mice, that's just a fact of life. Every available hole in your bike is a potential invitation for them to come in a build a nest and feast on your wires and other tasty bits like your foam filter etc. I even keep a plug in my exhaust when the bike is parked in my shop and have sonic pest repellents in a few of my electrical outlets as well as various traps and other deterrents. Mostly the mice just mock me by leaving the occasional well placed turd on my tail rack so that I know they are watching me.

good point; luckily I've managed to avoid mouse problems......but they could just as easily crawl through the much larger snorkle opening unless you plug or put screen over that too.

The reason I say the 1" foam filters have no benefit is because they block off at least half of the airflow you are trying to add......when they are clean. When they are dirty, I suspect that they have very little airflow through them at all which basically negates the reason for cutting the holes in the first place. Your main air filter is all that is required from a filtration perspective so IMO, adding those liitle filters undoes most of the work to add them and adds additional maintenance for no reason. If the mouse thing was a big concern for me, I'd use a hot glue gun and add some 1/4" x 1/4" screen over the 1" holes and the snorkle opening.

2 cents,
Dave
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post #23 of 40 Old 08-08-2019, 12:56 PM Thread Starter
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To update, I havenít touched the bike for several days now. Too many other things going on right now. I did, however, order several items. I ordered and received from Eagle Mike the Doohickey and torsion spring, KLX needle kit and carb screw upgrade. I also ordered a new Shinko 705 front tire, Uni air filter, 1Ē handlebar risers, right and left hand levers, clutch cable, throttle cables, bought a new hard case for the tail rack, new handgrips, new chain and sprockets, oh and new screw insert kit for the front shield. I have a #42 slow jet on it way, also from Eagle Mike. Once everything arrives I plan to spend next weekend with the bike in my garage. Iíd like to do it this weekend, but Iíve got to finish getting my daughter moved. I figure concentrating on the bike for a few days next weekend will help me forget about my empty nest depression.
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post #24 of 40 Old 08-08-2019, 05:02 PM
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good point; luckily I've managed to avoid mouse problems......but they could just as easily crawl through the much larger snorkle opening unless you plug or put screen over that too.

The reason I say the 1" foam filters have no benefit is because they block off at least half of the airflow you are trying to add......when they are clean. When they are dirty, I suspect that they have very little airflow through them at all which basically negates the reason for cutting the holes in the first place. Your main air filter is all that is required from a filtration perspective so IMO, adding those liitle filters undoes most of the work to add them and adds additional maintenance for no reason. If the mouse thing was a big concern for me, I'd use a hot glue gun and add some 1/4" x 1/4" screen over the 1" holes and the snorkle opening.

2 cents,
Dave
I agree on all points. While I've done air-box and other speed mods on other bikes like my ZRX1100 I have never bothered with any of the 3 KLRs or other dual sport bikes I've had. On my KLRs I've limited my mods to the basic skid plate and crash bars and a lower seat and a lower dash with a 12v outllet. The first owner of my current 2017 had already put on a Lexx pipe but the first thing I did was install the quite core tailpiece to bring the decibels down to <85db so I think it might be at least as restrictive as the stock pipe. Performance wise, the raw grunt of the 36 hp thumper is more than enough to do what the bike is meant to do. My thinking is that if someone bought a KLR to go fast they bought the wrong bike. Honestly most performance mods on the KLR really only gain marginal benefits, if any over a well tuned and maintained stock bike. My 64 VW Bug had about the same HP as my KLR and it used to haul around 4-5 teenage long hairs all over the back roads and mountains of Vermont with no problem.
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Last edited by VTWoodchuck; 08-08-2019 at 05:08 PM.
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post #25 of 40 Old 08-09-2019, 09:36 AM
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Originally Posted by VTWoodchuck View Post
I agree on all points. While I've done air-box and other speed mods on other bikes like my ZRX1100 I have never bothered with any of the 3 KLRs or other dual sport bikes I've had. On my KLRs I've limited my mods to the basic skid plate and crash bars and a lower seat and a lower dash with a 12v outllet. The first owner of my current 2017 had already put on a Lexx pipe but the first thing I did was install the quite core tailpiece to bring the decibels down to <85db so I think it might be at least as restrictive as the stock pipe. Performance wise, the raw grunt of the 36 hp thumper is more than enough to do what the bike is meant to do. My thinking is that if someone bought a KLR to go fast they bought the wrong bike. Honestly most performance mods on the KLR really only gain marginal benefits, if any over a well tuned and maintained stock bike. My 64 VW Bug had about the same HP as my KLR and it used to haul around 4-5 teenage long hairs all over the back roads and mountains of Vermont with no problem.
I agree with most of that; I've always said that if you want big power, the KLR is the wrong bike. People have gotten 60+ hp but at significant cost and effort - if that's what you want, I recommend a KTM690R. I don't consider the KLR grossly underpowered given it's mission either.....and it has a reasonable amount of torque. That said, I've done some simple mods (jetting, airbox, filter, silencer, etc.), but that has been more to make the bike run properly than it was about making more power.

With regards to modifications in general, the KLR is a budget bike with budget components and can be made far more capable with some smart modfications; suspension is at the top of the list. Without my suspension mods, I'd have had to get rid of my KLR's and upgraded to something with more capability because they were inadequate for the trails I wanted to ride at the speeds I wanted to ride them. I can afford to ride whatever I want but my modded KLR's give me the capability I need with all the other benefits of a KLR (longevity, reliability, ease of repair, parts everywhere, etc.).....that's the beauty of the KLR, it is a blank canvass that can be modded as much or as little as desired to meet the owner's needs.

Cheers,
Dave
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post #26 of 40 Old 08-09-2019, 11:24 AM
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Originally Posted by DPelletier View Post
I agree with most of that; I've always said that if you want big power, the KLR is the wrong bike. People have gotten 60+ hp but at significant cost and effort - if that's what you want, I recommend a KTM690R. I don't consider the KLR grossly underpowered given it's mission either.....and it has a reasonable amount of torque. That said, I've done some simple mods (jetting, airbox, filter, silencer, etc.), but that has been more to make the bike run properly than it was about making more power.

With regards to modifications in general, the KLR is a budget bike with budget components and can be made far more capable with some smart modfications; suspension is at the top of the list. Without my suspension mods, I'd have had to get rid of my KLR's and upgraded to something with more capability because they were inadequate for the trails I wanted to ride at the speeds I wanted to ride them. I can afford to ride whatever I want but my modded KLR's give me the capability I need with all the other benefits of a KLR (longevity, reliability, ease of repair, parts everywhere, etc.).....that's the beauty of the KLR, it is a blank canvass that can be modded as much or as little as desired to meet the owner's needs.

Cheers,
Dave
I think we're in violent agreement. You're right on about the suspension, though I do appreciate that the post 2015 bikes have a much heavier suspension. My 2017 is much better sprung than my Gen 1's that I had years ago. I had upgraded the suspension on my Y2K KLR with progressive front springs and a heavier rear spring, but I'm pretty happy with my current stock set up. My days of hammering around on backwoods single track are behind me and my riding now is primarily commuting on dirt roads and fishing trips on fire roads in the local National Forest. 80% of the roads here in Vermont are unpaved ranging from rough "unimproved" to "periodicly grated". I'm sure there is plenty of improvement to be gained for riders that are wanting to do more single track but perhaps switching to a DRZ400 or even DR650 might make more sense for a budget minded enduro type rider? I've owned both and they are much better in the woods than the KLR if for no other reason that they are much lighter and more nimble. That said, the KLR is the perfect bike for my needs now. Cheers
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post #27 of 40 Old 08-09-2019, 12:32 PM
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I think we're in violent agreement. You're right on about the suspension, though I do appreciate that the post 2015 bikes have a much heavier suspension. My 2017 is much better sprung than my Gen 1's that I had years ago. I had upgraded the suspension on my Y2K KLR with progressive front springs and a heavier rear spring, but I'm pretty happy with my current stock set up. My days of hammering around on backwoods single track are behind me and my riding now is primarily commuting on dirt roads and fishing trips on fire roads in the local National Forest. 80% of the roads here in Vermont are unpaved ranging from rough "unimproved" to "periodicly grated". I'm sure there is plenty of improvement to be gained for riders that are wanting to do more single track but perhaps switching to a DRZ400 or even DR650 might make more sense for a budget minded enduro type rider? I've owned both and they are much better in the woods than the KLR if for no other reason that they are much lighter and more nimble. That said, the KLR is the perfect bike for my needs now. Cheers
Yep. There is always a better bike for a specific mission; for trails a stock DR650 > KLR; DRZ > DR; WRR>DRZ; 500EXC>WRR, etc.
An intereresting discussion I was having elsewhere about the DR650 vs. KLR:

I've got seat time on both. Keep in mind that there are two different generations of both bikes and weight varies between all four. All weights, wet, no fuel - Gen2 DR (1996+) = 347 lbs, Gen1 KLR = 363 lbs, Gen1 DR = 367 lbs, Gen2 KLR = 399 lbs. .....so there is a 52 lb difference between new versions of either but only 16 lbs difference between 1995 models (for example). My modded Gen1's are lighter than any stock DR650 and out perform them offroad. That said, the DR is a better offroad bike stock to stock and requires a bit less modification to make them work well offroad. The KLR is better on pavement, particularly the Gen2 KLR......like all things dual sport; it's all about the trade-offs.

cheers,
Dave
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post #28 of 40 Old 08-09-2019, 01:31 PM
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Originally Posted by DPelletier View Post
Yep. There is always a better bike for a specific mission; for trails a stock DR650 > KLR; DRZ > DR; WRR>DRZ; 500EXC>WRR, etc.
An intereresting discussion I was having elsewhere about the DR650 vs. KLR:

I've got seat time on both. Keep in mind that there are two different generations of both bikes and weight varies between all four. All weights, wet, no fuel - Gen2 DR (1996+) = 347 lbs, Gen1 KLR = 363 lbs, Gen1 DR = 367 lbs, Gen2 KLR = 399 lbs. .....so there is a 52 lb difference between new versions of either but only 16 lbs difference between 1995 models (for example). My modded Gen1's are lighter than any stock DR650 and out perform them offroad. That said, the DR is a better offroad bike stock to stock and requires a bit less modification to make them work well offroad. The KLR is better on pavement, particularly the Gen2 KLR......like all things dual sport; it's all about the trade-offs.

cheers,
Dave
Well put. The DRZ400 beats both of them off road hands down and is still capable as a fairly short distance road commuter for the youngster that can only afford one bike, or the oldster that has a street bike and wants a dedicated dirt bike that's street legal to drive to the stomping grounds. However the comfort threshold is low and the seat is little more than butt floss. Fun discussion.
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post #29 of 40 Old 08-09-2019, 02:36 PM
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Yep, the DRZ would be my next choice if I was to take one more step towards the dirt.... I spent some time riding one in Baja when they first came out, switching back and forth between a stock-ish 1992 KLR; the DRZ was a much nicer ride up the dried out arroyos. Tried one a few times since and I still like 'em.

Cheers,
Dave
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post #30 of 40 Old 08-14-2019, 12:32 AM Thread Starter
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I had a chance to do a little work to the bike this morning. I drilled and tapped the oil drain hole and put in a 1/2ď plug with a new crush washer. Nice and snug, and no leaks. Second I put in a new freshly oiled Uni filter, rode the bike for about 20 minutes, and the popping has been nearly eliminated. I only noticed one time I had a slight pop on deceleration, no more loud popping as before.
Next up is the KLX needle kit, hopefully this weekend, then the Doohickey, again hopefully this weekend. Probably should have done it when I drained the oil and tapped the drain hole, but I had very limited time today.
My plan is to complete everything I want to finish this weekend, then ride over to the Central Coast to visit my daughter. The upper 70ís will be a nice change from the 107 itís supposed to be tomorrow.
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