V649HP-Kawasaki's new gravel runner

Discussion in 'Some Assembly Required' started by jdrocks, Dec 13, 2010.

  1. jdrocks

    jdrocks Gravel Runner

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    each of the previous bikes has been different, with the V649 bike a jump ahead in performance. the current build won't deviate from that basic recipe much since i know it works, and that "mission" remains the same.

    winter is coming, gotta take up residence in the shop, build something.
  2. jdrocks

    jdrocks Gravel Runner

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    no attempt to build a dirt bike here, so the rear suspension has proven suitable for the roads i ride these days. for a fact, i've never turned away from a road for lack of suspension on the V649.

    these bikes will never be light in the absolute sense, but there are others just as heavy, some heavier. i've never weighed any of them, but i do know they go where i point them.

    anyone who has set that ptwin motor in the frame by hand will recognize the problem...there's 130# of cop motor there.
  3. jdrocks

    jdrocks Gravel Runner

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    not as many people in your home area compared to east of the Mississippi, and they buy different bikes. the ER6 bikes are more an urban choice, and it still seems there are plenty around for a budget build.

    both of the last parts bikes had asking prices above my budget, but i was able to purchase at less than half the asking price, and then i was back on track.

    you have to know the market and what you're buying, such as the cost of any missing or wrecked parts, as well as the value of any parts you can sell. except for several assemblies, the parts market remains soft, good for buying, but you need to be realistic when estimating the value of anything you intend to sell.
  4. L.B.S.

    L.B.S. Long timer

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    Thanks JD, I am looking forward to it as always :D
  5. MTrider16

    MTrider16 Ridin' in MT

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    Any updates for the peanut gallery here? :ear
  6. jdrocks

    jdrocks Gravel Runner

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    got a flu shot, a week later had what feels like the flu. that makes the second year in a row that has happened. lost some days.

    all i got done was to pick up a bunch of stuff from my machine shop...that and mail some parts to the Texas/Mexico border for a rider swapping in a 19" front and an R1 shock. the machine work on all my stuff is well documented and easy for a competent machinist, but his local shops ruined some parts for him before he called in the cavalry. if a shop can't or won't do a job, just say so, don't ruin the freakin' part. i'll put up a photo when i get a chance, crazy stuff.
  7. MTrider16

    MTrider16 Ridin' in MT

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    Yeah, I'm leery of flu shots.

    As far as the machine shop :huh:cry:bash nuts.

    We'll be waiting when you have time to post. Have a good weekend.

    David
  8. jdrocks

    jdrocks Gravel Runner

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    dodged the XO, snuck out to the shop for a minute...read on.
  9. jdrocks

    jdrocks Gravel Runner

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    some talk about rotors...

    a DL1000 19" wheel is an easy swap on the Versys with OEM forks, and i've run this setup myself, works great, and is fully documented. guys running this setup retain both OEM Versys calipers, and all that's needed is a set of 300mm rotors that fit the DL hub and a pair of spacers, no problem.

    A Texas rider found a DL wheel that came with 310mm DL rotors, all in good shape, and the process should have gone well from there except when he sent the rotors out to be machined to 300mm, this is what he got back.

    [​IMG]

    i don't know what the guy thought a rotor is made of, maybe cheese, and the chattering sound when he started the tooling on the rotor must have been something to hear, freakin' idiot. scratch one DL rotor, ruined.

    [​IMG]

    the cost of a 310mm suzuki rotor is somewhat modest, but a matched set from a DL will always bring good money, so this was a very costly mistake.

    could have been worse, but i just happened to have a set of 300mm rotors that fit his wheel, so we swapped rotors, and he should have his moto on the road next week. better know your machinist before you turn over the work.

    suzuki rotors that fit the DL hub are 290, 300, 310, and 320mm. the 290 only comes into play if your build uses 41mm KLR forks. it doesn't work with Versys forks, and is too small to bother with when using the DRZ forks.

    some examples...

    [​IMG]

    on the left is a 320mm TL rotor, on the right is that 310mm DL. you can see the differences, as well as the similarities. there's a whole series of these rotors that span a decade or more of production across many models, but use the same bolt pattern and 70mm ID center. 6 and 8 button rotors are the most common, and if rotor shopping, it doesn't take long to get a feel for what fits and what doesn't. just make sure you know what diameter you're buying.

    if the wheel you purchase doesn't come with rotors, then you may have a choice in buying either open or closed center rotors. the hub itself is open, and i've run both.

    [​IMG]

    the block off plate was turned from the closed center of an SV rotor, and would be used with DRZ or KLR forks where you're running only a left side rotor. any scrap suzuki rotor with the right bolt pattern and 70mm center will do, ya don't want to spend money for a rotor you're going to cut up.
  10. jdrocks

    jdrocks Gravel Runner

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    i had some tubing at my local shop to be turned for 2 pairs of DRZ400 fork to Versys fork clamp adapters. the guy was very busy, and it took a long time to get the things back.

    i went over to pick them up, excellent work, except that the sleeves were supposed to be slotted 3mm for concentric clamping, not 1mm. 3mm is about the standing opening at the clamp, and the two need to match. hmmmm, my guy wasn't there, plus the shop had done me plenty of favors, no use making a big damn fuss, and i took them home.

    i had to think about it for a bit to determine a method to widen the slot without damaging the piece, made a decision, jumped on in.

    [​IMG]

    whew, the photo shows one at 3mm and three at 1mm that i hadn't cut yet.

    two of the adapters go out monday to a friend prepping a Versys for a RTW venture. strange to look at the photo and think of those little home brewed parts traveling around the world.
  11. MTrider16

    MTrider16 Ridin' in MT

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    Your going to start a business here, Dave's Mods and Rat Bike Parts. Nice work.

    David
  12. jdrocks

    jdrocks Gravel Runner

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    not me, i can't find time to get my own stuff done, but in these instances, i was in a position to take care of a few things, and did.

    ...but, within hours of putting up the photo of the sleeves, i got an email from a rider in a very distant location also doing the DRZ suspension, and speculating on whether his local shops were up to turning those parts. offhand, he didn't think so.
  13. MTrider16

    MTrider16 Ridin' in MT

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    I've spent a little time looking for machine shops near our pipeline facilities which stretch over a four state region. Usually the best recommendations come from places that sell steel. Obviously how effective this is varies but it is one method I have used. Out here, it wouldn't surprise me if you have to travel 100-150 mile to find a good shop.

    Our company welders also know many of the people in this business, but that isn't a source most people have. :wink:

    David
  14. jdrocks

    jdrocks Gravel Runner

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    there's no lack of shops in his area, he just hasn't found one with real favorable reviews.
  15. ktmklx

    ktmklx Been here awhile

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    Hey JD,

    Looking forward to the new build. What diameter are the DRZ upper tubes? What size are late model KLR upper tubes? I take it the DRZ must be superior legs since they end up on your builds.
  16. jdrocks

    jdrocks Gravel Runner

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    the DRZ forks have a number of advantages for a Versys based moto built for travel. cheap sourcing, huge aftermarket support, almost 12" travel, fully adjustable, massive 49mm stanchions, no steering stop issues, documented easy swap, and conventional design. why is the non-sexy conventional fork an advantage on a moto designed for long range travel on multi surface roads? the seals are located and pointed away from trouble, and if a problem does develop, the seal tends to weep, not puke the fork oil out the bottom like a USD fork. seems like a small point to make until you're on a trip with a leaking fork seal, and a long way from help. the DRZ stanchions are not a uniform diameter, and only allow about 25mm of adjustment on the clamping surface.

    the late model KLR forks have 41mm stanchions, and are also a very easy swap because the 41mm ER6 fork clamps swap to the Versys without modification. if going this route, source ER6N clamps that use a conventional damped bar mount. these forks also have a lot of support, and also have a uniform stanchion diameter so that there is unlimited adjustment, an advantage for tuning ride height and handling. this fork and clamp combo was too light for me and the way i ride, but may be perfectly suitable for others.

    the DRZs work great the last time, no need to switch.
  17. Bambi

    Bambi Been here awhile

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    Hi fellows,
    I just took a look at this http://advrider.com/forums/search.php?searchid=28154911 by typing the word 'Adversys' into the search ...
    I wonder, if Kawasaki really is aware of the potential of this bike. Look at the amount of threads and replies and at the number of readers!!! What, if they'd decide to build a real dual-sport in Dakar-style around this engine? If I was Mr. Kawasaki, I'd even think of sleeving it down to the Dakar-limit of 450 cc and try to use this as a marketing-platform! Akashi, this might be your wake-up-call!
    Kind regards, Bambi
  18. jdrocks

    jdrocks Gravel Runner

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    these threads have been around for years at this point, so it's not front page news.

    the real story is the number of these bikes that do not show up in a build thread, of which there are many times more, although still a tiny fraction of the number of any half way comparable production bike.

    what Kawasaki does or doesn't do in the area of future design and production is not a concern of guys building these motos...if they wanted a bike off the showroom floor, they wouldn't be working away out in the shop.
  19. Scubawerx

    Scubawerx Scubawerx

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    Well said jd. Any new projects up YOUR sleeve?
  20. jdrocks

    jdrocks Gravel Runner

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    got the parts for a bike, a few tweaks here and there, nothing major. if i can get started, shouldn't take long.