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I live in Wasilla Alaska and would be riding today but am about to do a bearing replacement job on my steering head.

I have an 06 with 12K miles and the bearings are shot in my steering head. Have any of you had the pleasure of replacing yours? If so, any pointers would be appreciated.

I have had many motorcycles since I was fifteen years old but got caught up in the dual sport thing after moving to AK. and bought a KLR. They seem to be dependable rides and as you can see by my pic (and know) you can build them into a full dress travel machine.

I use mine for cheap transport to places like Kodiak and Fairbanks or wherever I'm fishing. Mostly it is a recreational ride to the most remote place I can reach with all my gear on board. I put the biggest panniers I could find on it so as to carry camp gear and fly fishing goodies along. The bearing thing is my first problem in three seasons of use. You can bet I'll keep a closer watch on anything that may rattle loose from now on.

Ard
 

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One other question; I'm having trouble posting photos to the site. Seems they are too big even after I down size them. Advise would be welcome.

Thanks
 

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We had to clean and repack the lower triple tree bearing on my buddies 05. It had gotten some water into it and the grease went bad. The bearings had become a little sticky, but with some solvent and new grease all was good and haven't had another issue.

Here's a way to help post pics here:

Create an account at photobucket.com then upload your pictures to there. Once uploaded, have the forum open and your album on photobucket opened. You then find the pic you want to post and click on the IMG option under the picture, this copies it, then here in your post you just right click and paste. Do a preview of your post and make sure the pic posted correctly. I also found out you can adjust the size of your pictures uploaded to photobucket, I use the 1024x768 option on photobucket, this makes a really nice big picture to see. Make sure to have the size option set before you upload. Hope this helps...
 

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DXKLR,

Thank you, I will do as advised and open a photo bucket acct.

I'm afraid my problem goes a bit deeper than a re-packing job. There is a significant amount of slop in the steering tube. I have the top & bottom bearings here and am wanting to get to it asap but the holiday thing is ........ well the holiday thing.

I don't have a whole bunch of pictures from rides that include the bike. Most are the sweeping Alaska landscape that surrounds when I go somewhere. I can place a shot of the bike in here and there and viewers will be able to follow the money trail of add on parts since I picked it up in April of 06. The bike slowly morphed from stock to full dress.

Some of the stuff has been valuable other things were just window dressing. I am going to add a stainless front brake line this season. I stopped putting money into the bike because I started to feel that I should have just spent the dough on a BMW Dakar with all the bells and ringers and been done with it.

All in all the KLR is a good machine. It does not have the same clout as a BMW but it always draws attention when I park somewhere. It has proven to be pretty tuff on some of the rides I've taken and with the 2" raising links and the shock dialed all the way up it'll cross some pretty deep water.

One problem is that in order to reach some off road destinations I must ride soooo much hardtop that I began running Michelin T66's instead of knobbies. That makes it great when you are cruising the highway but it gets a little dicey when you hit the mud! I've learned my limitations (like Dirty Harry would say) and don't get too carried away off road.

I changed the front sprocket to a #16 last year and that has made highway travel better and if you are good with the clutch it'll still get to the rough stuff very well. You just gotta keep up a good head of steam when you see an obstacle coming. The sprocket and a better air filter raised my mileage (without the panniers) to around 50/53 mpg. depending on the grade of the trip. The panniers act like big wind stops and cut the mpg. to 45/47 highway. Still great when compared to my ford F150.

What kind of mileage do you get? If it is off the chart, how did you get there? Fuel economy is my biggest quest. I would like to see the kind of numbers I got out of a Yamaha XV 1200 (@54) or my tricked out KZ1100 (@70) highway, no bull. 70!

I'm going to see if the Harley shop in Anchorage will use their exhaust Dyno to set up this bike in the spring. That is what was done to my KZ, the carbs were synced and adjusted and an exhaust Dyno probe placed in each header pipe ahead of where they gathered into a Kirker pipe. The results were "off the charts" mpg. wise. Have you ever heard of this treatment?
 

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Yeah I didn't mean to say that your bearing issue was that simple, was just saying was the only bearing issue we have had, other than a loose bearing head nut. Once retorqued, it was ok..

As for fuel economy I had no visions of it being good, as I weigh as much as a moose snd I rode the bike hard. We also added Jardine exhaust and rejetted the bike. The result of course was much better torque and power with less mpg.
 
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