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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am trying to install a new crush gasket for the exhaust header on my 96. When I try to reattach the header, I’m only able to get one of the acorn nuts on, and just barely. No matter what I do I can’t seem to get the exhaust studs to go far enough through the flange so that I can reinstall both acorn nuts.
Any advice?
 

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Is there an old gasket still stuck inside the cylinder head exhaust port pocket or can you see bare aluminum?
Use an o-ring pick to fish around inside there.

Use a couple dabs of grease to hold the new one in-place in the pocket.
 

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2009 Kawasaki KLR650
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I remember I had a hard time with the install too. If there’s not something blocking it, I think I tried to use my leg or a brace against the tire to like it up and install both. You could also make sure it’s fitting into the muffler properly on the other side or try detaching the muffler if it’s giving you troubles for alignment.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Is there an old gasket still stuck inside the cylinder head exhaust port pocket or can you see bare aluminum?
Use an o-ring pick to fish around inside there.

Use a couple dabs of grease to hold the new one in-place in the pocket.
I got the old gasket out, and head looked clear and I used grease to hold new one. I got so frustrated at the thing I tried installing it without the new gasket and I removed the exhaust wrap and it still wasn’t able to clear the flange. The studs are intact and I don’t see any broken pieces in the nuts when I removed them. I even removed the muffler and mid pipe just to try to mount the head pipe back on. No go. There is obviously some interference but I can’t seem to find it.
 

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Maybe loosely fit the support bracket near the air box to help hold the header flange at the proper Angle?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Maybe loosely fit the support bracket near the air box to help hold the header flange at the proper Angle?
Tried that today. No go. I just can’t seem to get it to install with the gasket in place. Flat side of the crush gasket facing the head and the rounder side towards the pipe, correct? I’m able to just barely get maybe one thread onto bolts the nuts, but certainly not enough to torque down without either stripping or the bolt just coming off. It should be a straightforward process. Don’t see what I’m missing. I made sure to clean all mating surfaces. Tried both orientations of the collar. Tried one side first then the other. Tried installing with and without the rest of the exhaust bolted up. Is there some difference in gaskets between the years? I have a 1996.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I remember I had a hard time with the install too. If there’s not something blocking it, I think I tried to use my leg or a brace against the tire to like it up and install both. You could also make sure it’s fitting into the muffler properly on the other side or try detaching the muffler if it’s giving you troubles for alignment.
I’ve seemingly tried everything. I was thinking potentially it is the wrong gasket? Is there any difference between the gaskets throughout the years?
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
It is a D shaped gasket, didn't you say you tried it without too?
Yes and I was unable to get it to mount. Tried again today and was able to get it to mount without a gasket as well as with the old gasket. But whenever I try to install the new gasket it is just barely unable to get both studs past the flange.
 

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I'm going to suggest that some time in your bikes past history that someone damaged the exhaust studs on your bike.
And replaced them with too short of studs.
The oem studs are 8mm x 22mm long, (I made an ERROR here) NOT including the portion inside the head. #92004-1217 seen here,
1996 Kawasaki KLR650 (KL650-A10) Cylinder Head | Babbitts Kawasaki Parts House

Spray them with penetrating oil & soak for a day.

Heat the area with propane torch til spit on a finger sizzles.
Slip a boxed end wrench onto the stud.
Then Double nut your old ones & use the inner nut to extract them.

(SO) You could replace with PROPER Length bolts (8mm x 35mm flanged heads), use anti-seize grease on the threads.

(Corrections in BOLD)
 
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