Originally Posted by tjinkins
I was reading your posts #151 through #171 and had some questions. I don't have any front end for my ninja mutant yet, but I can get a 2003 DRZ400 front end at a reasonable price. Will the DRZ triples fit the ninja steering head with a change to the races and bearings. If not, what front end would you recommend for an easy gravel runner conversion short of just buying the KLR forks like tonymorr did on his build.
as you point out, the 08+ 41mm KLR forks are the easiest of all options since they slide right into the 41mm ER6 (650R) clamps. there have been a number of knockoffs of this setup since the cost of these KLR forks has come down significantly since Tony built his bike.
the DRZ forks are also very easy when matched up with the Versys clamps, are cheap and easy to find, and avoid the interference issues found with wider clamp spacing. the DRZs are fully adjustable after 2003 and conveniently use a 20mm axle. the Versys clamps have become a little tougher to find on the used parts market recently...hmmmm, wonder why.
the DRZ clamps are just one of the many that could be modified to fit the ER6 steering head, although i have not investigated the bearing/machining issues. the procedures for doing these swaps are straight forward and well documented. if you take the trouble to do this type of swap, i recommend a fully adjustable late model fork set with a minimum 46mm inner, preferably 48mm. before buying forks, make sure your whole front end will work together...forks, axle, wheel, brakes, fender. saves time and expense.
remember, using a long travel fork, either conventional or USD, will automatically produce a tall bike.