Pretty in Pink, dunno why
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Redondo Beach
Fork stiffness is largely a function of two things: the diameter of the tubes and the stiffness of the front axle.
The diameter of the tubes (or lack thereof, in the case of the KLR) controls the twisting of the of the forks. Lack of stiffness in the twisting direction can reduce the amount of control you have in rough conditions and can allow imperfections in the road to control where the wheel goes.
On many bikes, both dirt and street, you will see huge tubes. There are other benefits, but the large tubes make a stiffer fork.
The axle is the only thing that keeps the lowers from moving independently of one another, in a parallelogram fashion. The axle on the KLR is relatively small and it is solid. Take a look at other bikes that are a bit higher in the food chain. You'll see very large, hollow axles. Being large and hollow makes them very stiff.
The fork brace helps control both forms of fork deformation. By being clamped in the middle of the fork (more or less) it adds some torsional rigidity to the forks. Being at the top of the lowers, it braces the fork in the same way that the axle does, so it helps to control the independent movement of the lowers.
I don't have a fork brace and have never felt the need for one. I guess that says I don't ride too hard, eh?
Those who have installed them say that they can very much feel a difference in the bike's handling and tracking. That would be more prevalent ont he Gen 1, with its smaller fork tubes, than on the Gen 2.
Tom [email protected]
“Neither of the two people in the room paid any attention to the way I came in, although only one of them was dead.”
'How' are words so important they cannot be too often used.”
Sting like a butterfly.