Kawasaki KLR 650 Forum - Reply to Topic
2008+ KLR650 Wrenching & Mod Questions For repair, maintaining or modifying discussions related to the newly updated 2008 and beyond, Generation 2 KLR650 Motorcycle.

Thread: Lubricating Steering Stem Bearing and Swing Arm Reply to Thread
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  Topic Review (Newest First)
02-07-2019 09:39 AM
PaddyD I wish the manufacturers would go back to making things that pivot and turn greasable without turning it into a major labor intensive job.
I have a 74 Honda that in 45 years has never had the swingarm pivot apart and has never needed to. Probably never will because on both sides there is a grease zerk. Each spring I give them a shot of fresh grease till I see old stuff oozing out.
I had a old Harley Sportster that had a zerk on the steering stem. Again a shot of grease once or twice a yr and those bearings too will no doubt last a lifetime of riding. ( even if the rest of the bike won't) I'll never own another Harley..
This seems like such an easy thing that we would gladly pay a few extra $ for on a new machine, but then Kawasaki wouldn't make a fortune in labor to do simple services.
02-06-2019 02:20 AM
timberfoot Thanks Pdwestman

I was fairly liberal with the grease, so I suppose the bearings should be ok.

I did not even consider loosening the lower engine mount to assist with the removal of the pivot shaft. I loosened that nut only to allow the suspension lever to be removed from the frame. To tell you the truth, I only realized the effect of loosening the lower engine mount after the suspension lever fell off!

Thanks again for the advice, you and this forum are an excellent resource.

Kind Regards

02-05-2019 11:15 AM
pdwestman I generally will degrease the exterior of pivot arms, swingarm ends, seals & exposed stub ends of the bearing sleeves as closed assemblies. Then remove the seals, they are only a light thumb press seating, re-useable. Then remove the bearing sleeves. This also allows inspection/regreasing of the outer sealing lips.

The removal of the seals allows easier greasing of the needles and allows the freshly greased bearing sleeves to carry more grease into the assembly, instead of the seals wiping the grease off of sleeves.
But as long as the needles got another good smear of grease they should be good to go.

As to removal of the large lower rocker pivot, those 2 stupid holes can allow a lot of corrosion. Kind of dependant on the acidity of the waters, I think. One can simply smear them with RTV silicone sealant or epoxy or thread them for screws & thread locker.
But did you even consider loosening the lower rear engine mount to assist in removal of the pivot? The frame flexes/spreads about 2-3mm in that area during disassembly / reassembly. The engine stressing on one side could cause some more binding on the pivot bolt.
02-05-2019 02:32 AM
timberfoot G'day Paul

Yes i did grease the Needle bearings. I left the seals in place, i didn't really grease them. I just put grease around in the bearings. What would you advise I should do?

I am yet to plug the holes. The bike is still on a stand. I am actually waiting for a replacement pivot shaft. I mentioned that I damaged the thread getting the shaft out. I then proceeded to wreck the thread trying to fix it! I put the bike back together using the old shaft, but I will have to take it out again when the new one arrives.

I am not sure what order I took all of the shafts out when I pulled the suspension apart. I wonder if i pulled the pivot pin out before I disconnected the shock absorber and lever arms. Would that make the Pivot Shaft even harder to remove?


02-04-2019 08:28 PM
pdwestman You did re-grease the actual Needle Bearings & Seals, yes? And plugged those 2 stupid holes that let the water in, in the first place?
02-02-2019 11:26 PM
timberfoot Hello Guys

Today Lubricated all of the rear suspension and swing arm bearings. I had no real trouble, except that big swing arm lever bolt. It was tight. It took quite a bit of force to push the bolt out. so much, that I ended up damaging the thread on the bolt.

There was corrosion on both the bolt and the inner bearing race on the suspension lever. I gave them both a sand with fine sand paper and greased them before reassembly.

It is worth noting that the bolt was corroded and pretty tight at only 1500 mile (2400km) which is the first scheduled service for that part. I dare say the problem would have worsened if I had left it for 30000 mile or so...

Cheers guys

01-28-2019 03:06 AM
timberfoot Thanks Tom, That's great....


01-27-2019 08:24 PM
Tom Schmitz They are pointed out in the second picture in this article: https://www.souperdoo.com/stuff%20th...-zerk-fittings
01-27-2019 05:37 PM
timberfoot Hello again

I have to admit that I can not find the Stupid Holes. Can you please describe where they are ?

Thank you guys


01-26-2019 01:07 PM
DPelletier agreed; certainly there is no equivalent substitute for dissassembly, cleaning and greasing the bearings and components.

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