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Cornering stability is highly dependent on your tire pressure, weight distribution, and rider ability. Given that so many other KLR riders can rail corners on the KLR, suggests that the bike doesn't have instability issues in corners. Not on stock tires with correct inflation anyway. Lose those side cases and shed some weight off the rear. Put your tire pressure at around 26/30 as baseline for pavement riding. Don't have a death grip on the handlebars. Relax and let the bike roll into corners and follow a smooth arc. Believe me this bike can rail in the corners almost as good as any. And for God's sake...200 miles? C'mon! If you just don't like the bike because you felt you made a mistake, ok I understand. Don't blame the bike though.
I'm one of the guys that Rail corners on this big girl. 40 years of riding experience plus roadracing, flattrack, and a little MX build out my skills.
But.
Gravel on top of pavement can be terrible, and it's a surface combination that even surprises me once in awhile, and I live on a gravel road and ride to work every day I can. My recommendation would be to practice. Learn to read the surface. you'll be fine

[/QUOTE]

I've got about 7,000 miles on these bikes ('22 KLR) and I'm not seeing any stability issues. I've got the rear set up about as firm as possible with both spring and damping about as stiff as possible. I install the front wheel correctly and even do the 'front brake lever snap' a few times before tightening the axle. I make sure my rear wheel is well aligned I try to NOT run the rear axle too far back.

I toss those POS stock Dunlops away.

I ride A LOT of off-road and right now traction is REALLY challenging. All the while, no traction, stability or front-end pushing issues.

I'm 5' 7", 180#, 59 years old and I race off-road and MX quite a bit. Btw, I'm so short that I climb on the bike WHILE it's on the kickstand.
馃ぃ

I -do- get up on the front of the seat and rail turns rather "MX-like" a lot on this bike and I'm impressed with it's all around capabilities; but, again...I move around on the bike A LOT and I stand up and attack from the front A LOT, too.

I get the feeling the OPs bike may be set up a but funky OR maybe he's sitting a bit "back" on the seat OR maybe accelerated "thru" his fall...?

I don't know; but, his situation and his circumstances don't coincide with my experience on this bike.
 

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2022 Khaki no abs, Thermobob 2, tusk panniers gen2, modified crash bars gen2, Tusk D-flex, 16t front
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Throwing away those O.E. dunlop Tires can definitely help馃挭馃ぃ馃憤 CHECK THESE OUT BRO!
 

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Discussion Starter · #43 ·
I took the bike out for another ride today, while trying to remember all of the awesome suggestions from the forum.

Tire pressures were reduced, handlebar bag removed, bike put on a lift and confirmed no issue with tire spin or handlebar movement.

Rode around town a bit, then headed out on a winding 2-lane blacktop with a 55 mph limit. Was able to negotiate 45 mph corners at nearly 60 mph in comfort by simply leaning forward and squeezing the tank with my knees.

It took me back to my early truck driving days when my instructor said these immortal words: "Drive the truck, don't let the truck drive you."

The same applies to the KLR. Lean into it and make it your bitch.

Will be upgrading the tires and looking like the weather will be clearing and warming up soon, so will get more miles and confidence on the bike.
 

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I took the bike out for another ride today, while trying to remember all of the awesome suggestions from the forum.

Tire pressures were reduced, handlebar bag removed, bike put on a lift and confirmed no issue with tire spin or handlebar movement.

Rode around town a bit, then headed out on a winding 2-lane blacktop with a 55 mph limit. Was able to negotiate 45 mph corners at nearly 60 mph in comfort by simply leaning forward and squeezing the tank with my knees.

It took me back to my early truck driving days when my instructor said these immortal words: "Drive the truck, don't let the truck drive you."

The same applies to the KLR. Lean into it and make it your bitch.

Will be upgrading the tires and looking like the weather will be clearing and warming up soon, so will get more miles and confidence on the bike.
I'm glad you've regained your confidence,
I have one just like it and don't feel that the bike is unstable, I have a question for you....
Did you remove the front wheel for any reason?
I have read that in the KLR when placing them again if it is not done in a certain way then it causes instability when driving.
 

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I have read that in the KLR when placing them again if it is not done in a certain way then it causes instability when driving.
It does based on my limited experience on the bike. Which surprised me. Never had that issue with my DR650 on the same Trail Max Mission Tires.

In fact, with the TMM tires, my base KLR is still VERY sensitive to tire inflation. At 21/21, the bike AND the tires didn't get along when going over expansion joints at high speeds. At 26/31 things improved much, much better, to the point where I can ride over expansion joints at 80 mph and not feel a thing. But if I were WOT and I hit a big dip, the bike exhibited a bit of a wobble and 2 cycles of the rear suspension. Not really sure if the wobble was induced by me gripping on those 36" wide handlebars and not keeping my grip relaxed, which in turn, imparted a slight counter steer. I would get a similar sensation simply by rolling on/off the throttle during shifts when accelerating at WFO! I'm thinking those super wide bars plus the tight grip plus the big wrist action on the throttle tube affects the bike steering.

Other than the moments I've described above, the bike has been super stable. Even when I'm really moving on a twisty road, full left lean, quick full right lean, repeat, on the power, off the power, just flowing as fast as I can on curvy roads, the bike is solid. Well....as solid as a 21" front wheel, long travel suspension, and rear weight biased bike can be! It's never going to be as planted as a pavement bike that's for sure.
 

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Discussion Starter · #46 ·
Did you remove the front wheel for any reason?
I have read that in the KLR when placing them again if it is not done in a certain way then it causes instability when driving.
No I haven't. I did notice a weight on one of the front spokes when adjusting tire pressure, though. It's opposite the valve stem, so I assume it's normal.
 

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Glad I'm not the only one who thinks the KLR is top heavy and does have a tendency to lean beyond the point of return. High speed Twistee's are fine... it's the slow speed maneuvering that kills me. I'm a short-legged rider and have to be on a flat surface when stopping to do so safely. If there is any uneven surface and I'm not prepared for it, down it goes. O, been riding 900cc and up cruisers and touring bikes for the past 30 years (wings, BMW's, Nomads and Voyagers) without incident. Still learning how to ride this tall framed, top-heavy bike. But I do love the machine... Maybe a lowering kit is what I need :)
 

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PNWexplorer,

First, sorry you dumped it and damage occurred, the good news, you were not hurt and rode it out.
Lots of comments and lots of good advice on mechanical checks, cable routing, tire pressures etc.

Not being a witness but from what you say, it does sound like a "binding" of the forks when turning may well be an issue, or as someone noted, a cable is routed incorrectly.
I agree with the "return it to dealer" for a safety check, if not comfortable doing yourself. And, if under warranty, it should be the dealer, IMHO.

As to gravel on asphalt. ....(or even hard pack dirt)...
What some call a "pucker factor", Indeed, nothing gets your attention faster than to hit some gravel in midst of cornering and have that front tire, break loose!

I ride lots of back roads (asphalt) in my area (KLR and other bikes)... the known roads, I frequent, when out exploring new roads...I have a mental map of every place I have encountered gravel on the road.
I mean to say, every ride, which gravel was / is present, IN THE same place.
Due to farm equipment or heavy dump trucks etc. "pulling" the gravel out from the gravel road onto the asphalt.
Farm entrances, concrete batch plants, county road maintenance stock pile areas and the like.

A tip; at certain times of the day, when shadows are cast, usually late afternoon on a SUNNY day, look for small shadows on the Road.
Sometimes you can spot gravel "shadows", if that makes sense.

At speed, you won't see the actual small rocks but can sometimes see the shadows.
And of course I don't imply you should be staring over your front tire (too late anyway) but at a reasonable distance; as you are doing your continual scans i.e. traffic, pot holes, critters, log in road, stalled car, et. al.

I have a very short inseam and short legs aka I am short legged for the KLR..my nemesis is just getting on and stopping...I am learning the tricks but I KNOW exactly the feeling of the "tip point"..and feeling it could go over. I put crash bars and have yet to install "bark buster" type protection on the handle bars. Just in case.

Of all the things that is hardest for me...getting the kick stand down! As I have that "tippy' feel trying to balance on right foot and reach with left foot to engage it and pull it down.
I have plans to take off kick stand and have a bit of length taken out..as hangs up as try to get it pushed forward. IF I had longer legs, it would not be an issue; I could lean it over more (dead wt. not moving)..., its me, not the bike.

So, hang in there, maybe give some thoughts to the comments and end up enjoying your mighty KLR.
And riding courses are a great idea, for sure, all bikes have their own quirks and what not, the more you ride, the more you get comfy with a particular bike.
 

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post script
I re read your post, noting you were the only Dual sport i.e. KLR rider..in a group of other varied bikes...

Personally, just me, my preference and not inferring it should be yours..any group over 4 RIDERS , 5 tops, me included..gives me pause.

Sometimes one has a subconscious pressure to go faster to keep up...in my group rides I can count on being slower, and that is fine for me.
Perhaps you felt a bit rushed..to get out the gate off and going....that incline was not your friend for sure...I try to hunt a place to park that is easiest for me to dismount the bike.

You mentioned having one finger on brake...and maybe held it to long when taking off? Sure, that could do it too.

I always keep one finger at least on brake...the MSF advises NOT to do that.....for learning riders...thought being they panic and dump it...not saying or implying you did this...just saying on the finger on brake lever thing...
 

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2022 Khaki no abs, Thermobob 2, tusk panniers gen2, modified crash bars gen2, Tusk D-flex, 16t front
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Glad I'm not the only one who thinks the KLR is top heavy and does have a tendency to lean beyond the point of return. High speed Twistee's are fine... it's the slow speed maneuvering that kills me. I'm a short-legged rider and have to be on a flat surface when stopping to do so safely. If there is any uneven surface and I'm not prepared for it, down it goes. O, been riding 900cc and up cruisers and touring bikes for the past 30 years (wings, BMW's, Nomads and Voyagers) without incident. Still learning how to ride this tall framed, top-heavy bike. But I do love the machine... Maybe a lowering kit is what I need :)
I used some $20 gen 2 Chinesium billet 2" lowering links to lower and soften up the heavy duty spring I installed for my FAT in the REAR馃ぃ... I put some heavy duty racetech springs up front too. I'm 30" inseam @ 245lbs... It rides Great but i'm still tweaking on the suspension & getting my sag and preload dialed in. I'm reading all the threads I can about it. Seems to me like $20 should be your only cost to lower it. And taking time & reading all the threads about it of course. You don't want to lower only the rear either... you know...馃憤
Im sure it is a controversial subject 馃ぃ but it's your bike and for $20 and a little trial & error... maybe a stiffer spring if you are heavier than your average engineer in Japan like me? Whatever the case, you should be able to comfortably ride it regardless of controversy IMO馃槑馃憤
 

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Glad I'm not the only one who thinks the KLR is top heavy and does have a tendency to lean beyond the point of return. High speed Twistee's are fine... it's the slow speed maneuvering that kills me. I'm a short-legged rider and have to be on a flat surface when stopping to do so safely. If there is any uneven surface and I'm not prepared for it, down it goes. O, been riding 900cc and up cruisers and touring bikes for the past 30 years (wings, BMW's, Nomads and Voyagers) without incident. Still learning how to ride this tall framed, top-heavy bike. But I do love the machine... Maybe a lowering kit is what I need :)
It all depends what you are used to. Sure you can try lowering links (recognizing that the longer lowering links increase leverage on the shock, effectively decreasing both springrate and damping) but unless you are very short, the real answer is practice. Every week somebody is trying to sell a set of lowering links and are looking for stock ones to put back on. I'm 5'10" and my son is 5'9" and we ride stock height Gen1's with the sag properly set. My ex-wife also rode a stock height Gen1 at 5'4" but she was the PNWMA Women's offroad champion for 4 years in a row.... An offroad riding clinic is always a great idea. If you decide to try lowering links, at least keep the stock ones for when you want to put them back on.

Dave
 

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Thats brutal. Ive done it countless times. That damn top heavy beast. Thats not really damage, thats character, or battle scares.
 
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