Supermoto anyone?? - Kawasaki KLR 650 Forum
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post #1 of 8 Old 08-02-2007, 06:51 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2007
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Supermoto anyone??

Has anyone put supermoto wheels and tires on an 08 KLR? I think it would look SWEET! The wheelsets are high though $$$ so, why not use the stock 17" rear and buy a front 17" front rim and spoke set? Fit those with the Maxxis 90% road 10% off road supermoto tires and your done.......right??? Of course they wont be the trick looking black in color but if you save that much cash why not. Also, has anyone bought the Kawi geniune saddlebags for the 08 yet? I will probably hold off on the exhaust for now. I doubt this engine is going to get very exciting no matter what you do......but its pleasant and gets 55 MPG riding it hard......not to mention you can nearly get three new KLR's for the price of one GS!! This bike wont see any worse than gravel and dirt service roads so the updated "supermoto" would probably be nice on the highway. Really, Im not even sure if the bike has enough clearance to run this setup.
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post #2 of 8 Old 08-03-2007, 12:11 AM
Join Date: May 2007
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I have a set of avon distanzia sm on my 00' KLR .They ride very smooth. I have dropped my bike three times since installing them. Nothing against the tires, just be carefull not to get crazy offroad, the front tire doesnt grip well. The first time was crazy. I was riding around a 15 mph corner I pass every day and out of nowhere I was just sliding across the road on my butt. It happened so fast I had no clue what was going on. Ended up being a pop can some one threw out the window, got smashed and was lying there waiting for a victum. My front tire hit it and washed out. I picked up my bike as about 50 cars passed and stared without offering help, put the can in my backpack, and rode home cussing myself for taking my first fall on pavement. I wanted to blame the tires but I know it was the can. I like the tires for pavement and hardpack dirt but not for other applications.
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post #3 of 8 Old 08-17-2007, 09:56 PM
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The KLR is an exceedingly bad choice for a street supermoto. Enjoy it for what it is, don't try to make it into something it can never become.
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post #4 of 8 Old 08-18-2007, 12:29 AM
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Many guys have put an 18" wheel on the front. I think if you do a search you will find a lot of the answers your looking for. I like the 21" front myself.

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post #5 of 8 Old 08-18-2007, 02:39 PM
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post #6 of 8 Old 08-19-2007, 11:00 PM
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if it had 36 or 37mm forks, I could easily just mount an EX500 set of forks and wheel to it without a problem. depending on the size, 36mm I'd have to get first generation forks, second gen for 37mm.

though I would just like Kawi to make a straight up supermoto to compete with suzuki's DRZ400SM which I've heard is like WICKED in corners.
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post #7 of 8 Old 08-28-2007, 12:54 PM
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Location: Mansfield, TX
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Raceral, I think you've got a great idea. Don't listen to the naysayers; if you like it and it works for you, do it. I'm looking at putting a 17" rim up front and then getting a 3.5 x 17 for the rear as money allows. I know this thing will corner like it's on a rail with the right tire/wheel combination. I'm trying to find out if the 2.5" rear rim will lace up to the front hub with just a spoke set or if I need a whole new rim? The 2.5" up front will be plenty big enough for the relaxed-type of riding I do on a regular basis. Thin rims and tires will corner wickedly, just ask anyone who's ever ridden an RZ350! Mike in TX
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post #8 of 8 Old 09-02-2008, 08:49 AM
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supermoto anyone??

I agree, it looks cool. But there are reasons for the loss of feel and trust

Here's the deal: the reason there is less grip in the front end of the klr with
17" front wheel is this; Rake and Trail.
Functions of: The frame's designed in geometry and the following; Front ride height (that's the fork length), triple clamp offset combined with leading axle distance (built into the fork legs) and the front wheel/tire diameter. Along with the rear wheel/tire diameter, plus the length and angle of the swingarm. (rear ride height)
When you put 17" wheels and tires on the KLR, you lose trail, from a very generous 125mm to a paltry 86mm That's if you use a typical 120/70-17, if you use a 120/60-17 the trail is only 80mm.
Before any ride height changes.
That is why the front end "goes away" with out warning, and the feel is so nervous. Any time you see someone tuck the front, it is because of lack of trail at that moment.
An 18" set-up is only slightly less loss of trail.
It will take special triple clamps to restore proper trail. Along with very specific ride height changes front and rear to give the bike Optimum rake, trail and swingarm slope. The stock suspension has to be shortened, revalved and sprung for the best results.
The above mentioned EX500 front end conversion wont be long enough. It would have even less trail.
There is more to it but I will leave it there as I have to get to work.
The big klr has good potential if done right, if anyone is interested in doing a proper geometry set-up they can contact me at [email protected]

"It's all in the numbers"

'08 KLR650,
'72 BMW R75/5 (Col. Klink),
'02 KTM 400 E/XC,
'05 ktm 125 sx (for sale)

"Hey, are you okay? Can you get up?
I thought you said you could ride"

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