Buying a 1999 KLR650 w/ 37,000kms - Kawasaki KLR 650 Forum
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post #1 of 7 Old 05-27-2016, 10:46 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2016
Posts: 2
Buying a 1999 KLR650 w/ 37,000kms

Hey all,

First post here, jumping in to the Dual Sport world on a budget and just looking for some pointers. Been riding almost 10 years, started on a Ninja 250, then rebuild a 1979 Kawasaki KZ400, then Ninja 650, and now have my dream bike a 2006 Bonneville T100 cafe'd.

Always wanted something like a KLR as a second bike - I'm 6'1" 220lbs so the smaller dual sports didn't seem to fit, have the opportunity to buy a '99 local to me from a really nice guy, plan is to leave the bike at my cottage and ride secondary roads and gravel roads, maybe really light trail but realistically would be a small percentage.

The bike is a 1999 KLR650 with some home painting, 37,000kms and the guy selling just bought it in October to do his road test and found he isn't riding so he's selling to fund home reno's.

The bike went up and down the road fine, and it's priced right, we have a deal pending logistics of certification and money exchange.

I guess main questions are what to worry about on a KLR of this vintage? The rear suspension was making a creaking noise, any thoughts? Suspension seemed to have a lot of sag for what I'm used to but I'm assuming that's the nature of the beast? Am I making a smart buy?

Thanks guys!
- tried to post pics of the ad but I need 15 posts! Deal is for $1550 As Is.
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post #2 of 7 Old 05-27-2016, 12:38 PM
4th Gear
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Kelowna, B.C.
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In Canada?

Price is good. springs are for people about 160lbs so it'll likely take a spring swap to get the suspension where it should be.

Cheapest option is a set of raising links from and a set of progressive fork springs.

There are tons of upgrades that can make the bike better but the real "must do's" are the doohickey upgrade (also from and go through the bike and check and lubricate the suspension linkage....the unitrak pivot bolt can be a real PITA to get out if it hasn't been done regularly.

Other than that, a full service, check the tires carefully for age/UV damage. Buy a manual and a torque wrench. Check the valve clearance. make sure you keep the oil level at the very top of the sight glass.

Check the oil drain plug for leaks or cracks; it's common for people to overtighten them and damage the threads or case.
Other less important issues; footpeg bracket bolts and subframe bolts.

2 cents,
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post #3 of 7 Old 05-29-2016, 10:26 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2016
Posts: 2
Thanks for the reply Dave,

I went ahead and bought the bike, price was just too good to pass up (usually springtime in Toronto prices are insanely inflated), and there's some sense of security knowing it was sold by a motorcycle shop to the PO 500kms and 6 months ago.

Took my first ride with temporary plates yesterday and the bike rides great, the knobby tires at first were a little bit to get used to but at the end of the ride I was used to them. Hoping it won't cost me much for the safety certification. I sprayed the linkage with WD40 (I know it's not a lubricant, wanted to diagnose the sound) and the creaking suspension resolved so a proper lube is in order.

I did have a steady low noise at speed, I'm thinking either the knobby tires or chain rubbing - it goes away if I turn or weave, so I'm thinking just the knobbies rumbling down the road maybe?

Oh is there anyway for me to tell if the doohickey has been done already?
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post #4 of 7 Old 05-29-2016, 11:48 AM
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Location: Antioch Florida
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Congrats on your new motorcycle and welcome.

I just recently did the doohickey upgrade. Looking over my photos, I don't think it's as easy as removing the outer crank cover to take a peek. I can't see from the photos how one can tell if the doohickey and/or spring was replaced without actually getting behind the rotor and starter gear.

One thread I found, not much more help, though...
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post #5 of 7 Old 05-29-2016, 08:49 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2010
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You can tell if the lever is stock or not without removing the inner case; the spring is harder to tell though you can see if it has torsion spring. Unless the bike has the torsion spring, I'd swap it all out's like $40.00 for a new doohickey and torsion spring and then you never have to worry about it again.

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post #6 of 7 Old 05-30-2016, 12:42 AM
Pretty in Pink, dunno why
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Take a gander at video #3 at about 1:10 and video #4 at about 7:30.


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ďThe muzzle of the Luger looked like the mouth of the Second Street tunnel, but I didnít move. Not being bullet proof is an idea I had had to get used to.Ē -Philip Marlowe

ď'Why' and 'How' are words so important they cannot be too often used.Ē -Napoleon Bonaparte

Sting like a butterfly.
Noli Timere Messorem
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post #7 of 7 Old 05-30-2016, 09:05 AM
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Location: Antioch Florida
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If someone down the road gets their hands on my KLR, they can tell I did it from the Eagle Mike Doo Sticker.
I perma inked the date and mileage on it too.
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