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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I commute weekly on my 09.
We're looking at approximately 200 miles a week and I'm CONSTANTLY adjusting my chain tension. Admittedly, I dog the living hell outta my KLR. I run her 85 to 95 mph everyday, hard brake her, go airborne passing several cars in the process and clipping an occasional deer. I travel up a mountainous road. It's a highway essentially, 90 degrees straight up initially and I shift at 1000 rpms from redline like clockwork. Can't seem to hit 90 mph yet!
Ive also been locking my rear up lately because people REALLY pay attention when they hear the horrible screeching at 60 mph as I grin from ear to ear. As a caveat, I only lock her up when I know I'm getting a new tire in a few days.
Anyhow, other than the 'locking up' is
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THIS the reason my chain is crapping out on me? It's never done this before and I am meticulous for maintenance.
I change the oil and filter every 1500 miles because I feel bad for her and ALWAYS top her off when running low.
Btw, I own a Harley and an 81 cm400t and have zero issues with them.
Whatta you say fellas???
 

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2022 KLR Adventure
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273 Posts
Dealer recommended what I can't remember...told me I should get 10k out of it.
3 initials I remember...DID, DOD...simply can't recall...I'm a bad KLR owner I know!
DID is probably correct. They’re usually GTG. I’m sure you’ve been told to leave it looser than you would on most other bikes???

Mine looks very loose. It really is right where it needs to be.

I’ve been keeping it so while the bike is resting on the kickstand you can push the chain upward and it barely touches the back of the chain slider on the bottom of the swing arm. The rear of that slider is roughly halfway between the sprockets for reference.

Have you measured the stretch service limit on that chain to see if it really is stretching? Maybe the axle is drifting forward. Not a likely scenario obviously but we’re troubleshooting.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
DID is probably correct. They’re usually GTG. I’m sure you’ve been told to leave it looser than you would on most other bikes???

Mine looks very loose. It really is right where it needs to be.

I’ve been keeping it so while the bike is resting on the kickstand you can push the chain upward and it barely touches the back of the chain slider on the bottom of the swing arm. The rear of that slider is roughly halfway between the sprockets for reference.

Have you measured the stretch service limit on that chain to see if it really is stretching? Maybe the axle is drifting forward. Not a likely scenario obviously but we’re troubleshooting.
DID...THATS IT.
I also keep my chain as exactly as you described...
I'm moving soon too and have packed my manual.
I have about 3 to 4 hash marks left to move the axel back but my adjustment bolts won't budge now. I removed and WD40'd them when I replaced my wheel bearings a while ago. Axel nut always loosend to facilitate adjustment...but never too much. Just enough to allow plates to move rearward for easy movement.
 

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2002 gen 1 street-ized commuter special
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you have not mentioned lubricating the chain..... is it an oring/xring chain or a std non oring chain?
 

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DID is a good brand; it NEEDS to be a sealed chain. I assume the sprockets are in good shape? Make sure you have enough slack - from my "Top New KLR Owner Mistakes to Avoid";


- 2) Chain tension: many owners and some shops overtighten the KLR's drive chain; due to the long travel suspension and geometry the KLR needs more slack than other bikes people may be used to. If the chain is too tight you risk damaging the countershaft seal and bearing as well as possibly the wheel bearings along with premature wear of the drive chain and sprockets. Quick check; with the bike on the sidestand, you should be able to touch the chain to the bottom rearmost portion of the chain slipper but not the metal swingarm itself.
 

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Oh, and cool; I used to have an '81 CM400T back in 1984. (y)
Not your regular 81 cm400 now
had to cut grind and rip off the 40 YEAR OLD TIRES! A BARN FIND WITH 4000 MILES...DRAINED AND LUBED, TWISTED A FEW WIRES AND SHE FIRED RIGHT UP....
1000 bucks later shes legal and safe...cant hit factory top speed of 96mph however...
complete engine overhaul this winter
sorry for the honda post people!
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Dave
 

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Chain is NOT sealed...tried one once but the kerosene was too much for it with repeated cleansing...I use a standard Chain with ChainWax which is an awesome product.
That‘s likely your issue - the unsealed chain. Kerosene shouldn’t hurt a sealed chain. A lot of chain manufacturers recommend it. Alternately you can use WD-40 or an expensive chain cleaning product.
 
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2022 KLR650 - Fully loaded
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Go on 3D cycle parts and get yourself an x-ring primary drive chain with sprockets. Set the chain tension loose and clean/lube every 500mi if you can. Problem solved!

 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
That‘s likely your issue - the unsealed chain. Kerosene shouldn’t hurt a sealed chain. A lot of chain manufacturers recommend it. Alternately you can use WD-40 or an expensive chain cleaning product.
Perhaps a crappy o ring chain...substandard if you will...ok. trying this again.
Klr mule has a link to 3d products...I'll give them a try.
 

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I run the Primary Drive brand chain/sprockets.
Great product!
Not maintenance, no lube, just keep it clean and get 10k out them.
I prefer RMATV/MC over 3D, free shipping and I get it in 2 days after ordering!
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I'm going to go ahead and try them...I'll
That‘s likely your issue - the unsealed chain. Kerosene shouldn’t hurt a sealed chain. A lot of chain manufacturers recommend it. Alternately you can use WD-40 or an expensive chain cleaning product.
That‘s likely your issue - the unsealed chain. Kerosene shouldn’t hurt a sealed chain. A lot of chain manufacturers recommend it. Alternately you can use WD-40 or an expensive chain cleaning product.
Are your swingarm bearings good? ie zero play
Swingarm bearings are GTG...
Thanks for asking...
 

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Chain is NOT sealed...tried one once but the kerosene was too much for it with repeated cleansing...I use a standard Chain with ChainWax which is an awesome product.
I can tell by your second pic that your chain is slightly too snug, even with my long distance eye-sight.
The drive chain Needs to be Loose enough to just gently touch the rear tip of the rubber under-slider using only the tip of ones finger. Not forcing it UP to make contact!

But a non o-ring chain with still wear 5-10 times faster than a high quality o-ring sealed chain. And the non o-ring chain needs to be lubed at Both Ends of your daily commute, while the chain is warm to suck the lube into the bushings & rivets and then tac-up to reduce fling-off.
 
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