Is 1st gear low rpm lugging around a bad thing? - Kawasaki KLR 650 Forum
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post #1 of 5 Old 02-26-2007, 06:35 PM Thread Starter
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Is 1st gear low rpm lugging around a bad thing?

Greetings, I am getting used to riding my new to me 2004 klr, I have had other big thumpers...BSA 441 Shooting Star, BSA Victor 441 and currently also ride a 750 Norton Combat Interstate. Am I alone in thinking that first gear seems a little high? I ask this as it appears that when riding slow in first gear that the engine seems to be lugging? Is this action detrimental to the 650 engine? I would appreciate some owner wisdom in this regard. Other than that, I am thrilled with my new ride and look forward to every break in the weather up here in Vancouver BC to get out and ride.
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post #2 of 5 Old 02-26-2007, 07:20 PM
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Yes I too think 1st is a little high for riding in the woods, but on the road it is OK, maybe even a little low. I find a gap between 1st and 2nd myself.
Some people switch the front sprocket to get it lower for the woods/trails, and some switch the rear sprocket, (need longer chain for the rear). As far as hurting the motor I don't think it will hurt it any, but if you feel like 1st is too high you could always switch to a 14 tooth sprocket. The only problem with the 14 is it makes 5th lower too, and hwy speeds it increases the rpms.

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post #3 of 5 Old 02-26-2007, 07:20 PM
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Welcome to the forum,lots of good people here. Yes,first gear is high.Alot of people drop a tooth on the front sproket to slow it down abit on the trails.As far as lugging goes,it's a little tough on the bike if your actually lugging.just gowing slow is not a problem.

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post #4 of 5 Old 02-27-2007, 01:46 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the quick response, I'm sure I'll get used to the slightly higher 1st. (at least its not just a figimintation of my omagination)There will be no mods until I have some miles on it. I was out for a quick ride this afternoon and await the warmer weather. I have been known to spell words just plane wrong. Another reason I like the bike is the way you can dress them up or down for your preferred requirements. All the bikes of the past were always hard to find parts for or dealer specific and a high price. Thanks for the input with my question.
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post #5 of 5 Old 02-27-2007, 01:39 PM
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A few years of enduro racing taught me that motorcycle clutches are made to be slipped on occasion.

If you're in a situation where it seems slow, and you aren't going fast enough to do so without lugging the engine, slip your clutch some and give yourself a few more engine revs.

I don't recommend this on a continuous basis, but if you're in a spot where first is a bit tall, it works very well. If you need to do this all the time, I'd change sprockets as mentioned.

Or you can just ride through the spot faster.. Remember. Momentum is your friend.
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