Houston we have a problem - Kawasaki KLR 650 Forum
KLR & Other Motorcycle Related Discussion Grab a seat and discuss whatever you like about the KLR or other related topics. Within reason.

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 11 Old 03-29-2014, 04:43 PM Thread Starter
Neutral
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 5
Houston we have a problem

I went to the dealer today and laid hands on a 2014 KLR for the first time. Man was I in for a surprise when I threw my leg over it. I would need some 6inch platform shoes to ride this thing. Iím 5 foot 8 inches tall and could barely touch the ground with my tip toes. How in the hell do you ride these things? Surely the factory doesnít expect the average height person to have to lower a bike and buy a new seat before it leaves the show room floor. My question is how low will a lowering link get the bike? Will it need a new side stand? What the hell are they thinking? Going from Harley to KLR may be a harder transition than I thought.
lukedrywalker is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 11 Old 03-29-2014, 04:58 PM
2nd Gear
 
Grinnin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Maine
Posts: 368
Garage
It's mostly about what you're used to.

I was intimidated when I took a test ride. I had the seller load it into my pickup. Then I rode. And rode. Then I had to modify the seat -- making it taller by about a half inch in front.

I still claim 5'9", but I think 5' 8 1/2" is more accurate. So I may be a little taller than you.

I've simply gotten used to keeping the KLR upright. I do have shorter bikes and they do feel handier to push around the shed or driveway. The long soft suspension on the KLR is great, though, on the lumpy roads we have this year.

Sorry, someone else will have to help you with "how low" and whatnot. I think that you can get used to the KLR if you want. It'll be a big change from a brand that has low seats as an important design goal.
Grinnin is offline  
post #3 of 11 Old 03-29-2014, 05:24 PM Thread Starter
Neutral
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 5
What do you do slide off the seat at stop lights with one foot on the ground?
lukedrywalker is offline  
 
post #4 of 11 Old 03-29-2014, 05:31 PM
Lifetime Member
 
650Stew's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Alberta, Canada
Posts: 2,480
Quote:
Originally Posted by lukedrywalker View Post
What do you do slide off the seat at stop lights with one foot on the ground?
Yup, pretty much! I also slide forward on the seat as far as I can to get maximum leg length. I'm around 5'9". You get used to it pretty quick, the only time it really gives me grief is pushing the bike back while seated on soft surfaces and gravel. In that case I sometimes have to dismount and push the bike.

You can get the bike about 4 inches lower with links and a lowered seat. You do have to shorten the kickstand if you use links. I had mine lowered with a low seat, but seemed to be dragging my pegs all the time in turns so I put it back to stock height.

650Stew is offline  
post #5 of 11 Old 03-29-2014, 07:33 PM
4th Gear
 
Spec's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Gateway to Death Valley!
Posts: 1,928
Quote:
Originally Posted by lukedrywalker View Post
What do you do slide off the seat at stop lights with one foot on the ground?

Yes but you don't have to slide off the seat just lean it over a bit. I usually put my left foot down so I can hold the brake with my right.

No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him. 1 Cor 2:9
Spec is offline  
post #6 of 11 Old 03-29-2014, 07:55 PM
OverDrive
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Lander, Wyoming
Posts: 5,463
lukedrywalker,
Do you KNOW, whether or Not it was a Second Production Run or FIRST production run?
The Second production run 2014 has STIFFER suspension springs for two-up or heavy touring gear and a Widened Seat, at the rear 2/3rds.

The First production run 2014 has the Standard 'Softer' suspension, which is STIFFER than the old style '87-07 KLR.
Both could be lowered, 'some'. For a Fee.
You might go back to the dealership and discuss your 'options'.

The older '87-'07 models also had a softer seat, allowed one to 'sink-in' a little more. I have the 'original' 1987 -A1 with a Newer/Harder seat, even makes my 36" legs 'stretch' sometimes.

pdwestman
Modify at "YOUR OWN RISK"!

Still riding my 1987 KL650-A1. 85,000+ miles & counting
pdwestman is offline  
post #7 of 11 Old 03-29-2014, 08:56 PM Thread Starter
Neutral
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 5
Quote:
Originally Posted by pdwestman View Post
lukedrywalker,
Do you KNOW, whether or Not it was a Second Production Run or FIRST production run?
The Second production run 2014 has STIFFER suspension springs for two-up or heavy touring gear and a Widened Seat, at the rear 2/3rds.

The First production run 2014 has the Standard 'Softer' suspension, which is STIFFER than the old style '87-07 KLR.
Both could be lowered, 'some'. For a Fee.
You might go back to the dealership and discuss your 'options'.

The older '87-'07 models also had a softer seat, allowed one to 'sink-in' a little more. I have the 'original' 1987 -A1 with a Newer/Harder seat, even makes my 36" legs 'stretch' sometimes.
2014 new edition .
lukedrywalker is offline  
post #8 of 11 Old 03-30-2014, 08:31 AM
OverDrive
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: NW MO
Posts: 5,337
If you opt for the "lean over and use one foot" technique when stopping, watch out for painted lane markings like turn arrows. They're as slick as snot on a doorknob when it's raining, especially if you're wearing boots with a hard and smooth leather sole.



planalp is online now  
post #9 of 11 Old 03-30-2014, 09:45 AM
2nd Gear
 
Grinnin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Maine
Posts: 368
Garage
Quote:
Originally Posted by lukedrywalker View Post
What do you do slide off the seat at stop lights with one foot on the ground?
Yup.

While I can put the balls of both feet on the ground, I only need to do that for a problem situation -- need to back up or shift into neutral or something like that.

I hope my post above didn't sound like "buck up and ride a man's bike". My intention was to say that we get used to it.

I have gotten on an '08 KLR (in '08) and I recall thinking it would work OK. If the '14.5s have both firmer suspension and firmer seat, it would be more intimidating. I still think you can get used to it IF the KLR meets your needs for gravel/dirt. There are lighter bikes better for dirt, but usually taller too. The KLR is great for distance and gravel and dirt roads.

The KLR suspension and tires can let you use the dirt roads and trails you say look inviting. For me the KLR weight and height can also make it a handful when I need to turn around in sketchy conditions. Last summer I thought I'd spend a night on trails off a gravel highway then found that I wasn't comfortable going very far down those trails alone with some weeks of camping gear.
Grinnin is offline  
post #10 of 11 Old 03-30-2014, 03:39 PM
3rd Gear
 
masterlink's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Bethlehem,PA
Posts: 689
Heck, you need to shorten the side stand even if you don't lower the bike. I'm 5'11" ,but my inseam is 29". No lowering links, a sergeant seat took off an inch. Able to put both feet on the ground, but at lights I just put the left down with a bit of lean.

~Things work out best for those that make the best of the way things work out~
masterlink is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the Kawasaki KLR 650 Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Hello from Houston TXWHITEY Introductions 4 07-19-2013 11:55 AM
Hello from Houston, TX borrego Introductions 2 03-26-2012 06:25 PM
How about Houston wildbill Deep South Riders 2 08-27-2010 09:05 AM
Houston Texas Here... gresults Introductions 2 11-21-2008 04:03 PM
Howdy from Houston Jkrup47 Introductions 1 10-31-2008 09:47 PM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome