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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Okay, I'm a new KLR owner, and have some questions. First, what is this doohicky thing I keep reading about? I have also read about a "22 cent mod", and an "L mod" for the air box. And to open a can of worms, what is the preferred engine oil for a KLR? Are there any other low cost mods to open it up a little bit? I'm in southern Michigan, at about 1,000 feet above sea level. The bike is going to be ridden primarily on rural 2 lanes, and dirt back roads. Maybe a little touring, and a bit of light trail riding.
Thanks,
Arnie
 

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Hi Arnie - Welcome to the forum.

The doohickey is the balancer chain tensioning lever. It is a known weak spot on the KLR. In the past, both the lever and the spring that activates it have been prone to breakage. On the Gen2s ('08 and up) Kawasaki has made a better lever, but unfortunately the spring is still breaking, or at the very least going completely slack.

Generally on a Gen2 (pun unintended, but I take what I can get) it is only necessary to replace the spring. However, once you're in that far most people elect to replace the lever, too. Further, there is a helical spring that can be wrapped around the lever instead of using the conventional spring. Many people think this is a better way to go.

The 22 cent mod involves pulling the slide out of the top of the carb and inserting two stainless or brass #4 washers under the head of the needle, and then drilling out a hole in the slide to a slightly larger size (9/64", if memory serves). The washers lift the needle a bit, which cures the factory lean condition, while enlarging the hole in the slide improves throttle response. It’s called the 22 cent mod because the washers cost 22 cents.

The L-Mod is cutting an L-shaped opening, or making an L shaped series of holes, in the air box in order to provide increased airflow on the intake side. It is normally coupled with removing the snorkel at the aft end of the air box. Generally, this mod is not needed until you go to some sort of much-freer breathing exhaust.

Bang for your buck, you’ll probably get 90% of the possible improvement in the KLR by doing the 22 cent mod and turning your low-speed circuit needle out a bit. After that you’re gonna start spending benjies and not get much. I'm not going to elaborate on that, but if you could spare a dime...

And the best oil is… yeah, you thought you’d suck me in to an oil war, huh? I ain’t going there, no way!

But I use Shell Rotella Dino oil. About the only caution is that most people would say not to use an oil with an “energy saving” emblem on it – has friction modifiers the clutch may not like.

Tom
 

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But I use Shell Rotella Dino oil. About the only caution is that most people would say not to use an oil with an “energy saving” emblem on it – has friction modifiers the clutch may not like.

Tom
And Rotella isn't an "energy saving" oil, so it's safe for MC clutches.

Speaking of that.. My FZ6 came with Yamalube 10w-40 in it.. (bike had 7500 miles on it) I rode it with that oil for a day, since I was informed that the oil was less than 2000 miles old. The bike shifted clunky and wasn't great when shifting gears..

I rode it 100 miles and then changed to Chevron Delo 400 (similar to Rotella) and was shocked at how much better it shifted right after the oil change.. Next time I'll try the Rotella..:)
 

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Rotella...bike loves it. Delicate sips. Constantly refilling its glass. :46:
 

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i live in Portugal i am a brit but i would like too know more about the doohicky where i can get the mod parts from my bike is a 92 model klr650 with 21000kilometres on the clock many thanks guys great forum
 

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You woke up an old thread. Better to start a new one. The forum search function will tell you all you want to know about the Doohickey to the point of nausea. Parts are readily available in USA from Eagle Manufacturing.
 
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