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I bought a new 2005 KLR650 that year, and rode it for some years and then ntradd it in on another bike. I put about 15,000 miles on the KLR, and it was a great motorcycle. The only problem I ever had was that I had to keep an eye on the battery water level, as it had a tendancy to loose the fluid over time. I even replaced both tires myself the old fashioned way--with three tire irons and a bit of colorful language on the garage floor .My 2005 never used any oil between changes. I found it to be a very comfortable ride for my 5'10" 175 pound self. I literally never got nit off road though. It was a very good street bike.

Then, after the redesigned KLR650 I had heard that some of the new ones used what I consider a massive amount of oil. I'd heard some were using well over a quart in 1000 miles, and some owners taking trips had run low enough to do damage even though they hadn't covered many miles. What is the consensus on the cause of this? Was it a bunch of badly made piston rings? Has this problem been corrected on the newest KLRs? The magazine road tests, of course, never mentioned this as they generally never put on many miles.

The reason I bring this up is that, on Sept 5th we are moving from the mainland to the Big Island of Hawaii, and I have sold off my three motorcycles over the last year. So I plan to buy a new bike soon after the move. I am now considering getting a second generation KLR650, but the oil consumption issue is a big concern. I've owned about 25 motorcycles over 50 years of riding, and none have been oil users, and that includes two Sportsters that used a small amount of oil.

If I saw a new leftover 2005 (like my first one) at a dealer I'd buy it in a heart beat.

AS I recall, some of the changes fro the Gen 1 to Gen 2 were; suspension--less travel on the Gen 2; body work-I prefer the Gen 1s here, but I'm an opinionated old geezer; balancer tensioner-the Gen 2s have a stouter doohicky, but the spring may not be very good (??). Anything else??

Thanks,
Jon from Puyallup, Wa.
soon to be from Keaau, Hi
 

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Well, nothing wrong with being opinionated, but you sound like someone who's more than intellegent enough to check your oil level.. If a KLR is what you want, I wouldn't rule out a bike because once a week I have to push the bike straight up and down and check the oil level, or maybe add 3-4 oz because it's low in the window..

I understand what you mean, though.. I have a Gen 1 that's always used about 1/2 a quart in 1000 miles.. It did when I bought it with 1200 miles, and over 20K miles later it runs exactly the same, and uses the same amount.. I love the bike, so I accept it.. If nothing else, it's made me more vigilant on checking oil levels on my other bikes.. :) (yeah my BMW airheads drink a few oz every 1000 miles, too)

Anyway, you've pretty much got the jist of what the differences are between the two..

Sounds to me like you should look for a slightly used Gen 1 when you get to HI, slap in a Doo, hope it doesn't consume oil, and enjoy your new riding area!! :)

Oh, and I think the brakes are better on the Gen 2 bikes, but I haven't ridden one..

All the short comings of the KLR's are easy fixes, and if you're able to change tires (just like I do) you're more than able to install most upgrades..

Good luck!!
 

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If you asked me this in the first year of ownership, I would NOT recommend the gen 2. Now that I have ironed out all the little issues, I think this is a great bike I find it very comfortable and I like the extra weather protection the Gen 2 bodywork provides.
 

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I can't really add anything. Except oil on my 08. But the oil burning doesn't bother me too much. Taking off/on the plastic does. But I would still rather have the beefier forks, fairing, slightly better brakes. The Gen1 is an iconic bike. The Gen2 is quirky, but still great in its right. 3 years in now, an I'm glad I got an 08. 90% of the time. :)
 

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I just rolled over 1000 miles on my 2011 and no oil consumption issues yet (motoman break in). I love the wind/weather protection (hardly get wet as long as you dont go too slow). the front brake isnt the best but the rear brake is great, still tho it stops pretty good for a dual sport 135 feet from 60 mph according to performance numbers. I am going to keep things stock for as long as i can, just gonna add crash bars front and rear. the only thing i noticed that could have some issues is the wire that triggers the brake light when you use the rear brake. I noticed on a few used ones that it was already rusted and would probably break so i just put some rubber tubing around it. And i have to say i am very surprised by how well the klr handles on the road, i can dip this thing so far into corners its scary. I rode a 2006 klr but didnt like it at all and was very skeptical about buying a new one but it is twice the bike the 06 was. Less viby, better suspension (for the street), better brakes, can pull lower rpms without feeling like you are in a paint shaker.
 

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Not trying to be bummer, but mine didn't really start burning til around 10K miles. Seems like that is the case with a lot of folks. But oil is cheap. ;)

I like that orange color.
 

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Lovin' the '09 batcycle!
No oil issues, Stays steady at 90 mph, and totally shreds the back 40.

CheapAndSmilin'
 
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