"Lizrdbrth: KLR Dietician" thread.

Discussion in 'Thumpers' started by Lizrdbrth, Oct 10, 2006.

  1. Lizrdbrth

    Lizrdbrth Wackjob

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    Howdy,

    I've been planning to start this thread for awhile now, and if there's enough interest in it I'll continue to maintain it.

    I've been weighing various components as I remove them to service the bike or to make modifications. Also weighing the "cost-to-benefit" ratio of mods whether or not they result in an increase/decrease in weight upon completion.

    E.G.:

    Stock Kawasaki KLR handlebars: 34 ounces

    ProTaper ATV HI bars: 37.2 ounces

    ProTaper ATV HI bars (less crash pad): 33.2 ounces

    Total weight savings: .8 ounces

    Conclusion: If you're changing to the ProTapers solely to save weight, don't bother. In my case the decrease in vibes to my hands was a nice side benefit, but I had to spend 60 bucks to verify the rumor.

    Another example:

    Stock KLR front axle: 12.0 ounces

    Hollow KLR 600 axle 10.2 ounces

    Total weight savings: 1.2 ounces


    Conclusion: In this case not really worth doing unless you're really anal.


    But when wemove to the rear it's a slightly different story:

    Stock KLR rear axle: 20.1 ounces

    Hollow KLR 600 rear axle: 15.6 ounces

    Total weight savings: 4.5 ounces

    Conclusion: if you stumble onto a KLR 600 parts bike for cheap, a quarter pound is significant. Combined with the hollow front, more significant. I got mine for free. And I'm anal. And I have no life.

    I've discovered huge weight variations between various stock and aftermarket components from footpegs to fenders. There are over 2 pounds of turn signals on a KLR 650. There are barely 4 ounces of turn signals on a DR 650 if you shorten the stems, my Acerbis KTM-style replacement fender is 4 ounces lighter than my cracked stocker.....etc.

    A Supertrapp weighs only 6 pounds vs. 12-14 pounds for a stocker (Yes, they vary by that much. go figger). Mine cost 200 bucks, saved a bunch of weight (for about 2 months) was obnoxiously loud, needed constant repacking, then promptly stress-cracked and disintegrated. No deal. I'll wait and buy a quality replacement should one ever be offered at a reasonable cost.

    The purpose of this thread is not to flame anyone's mod or to slam anyone's products, but rather to be sort of a "Mythbusters" of modifications, with weight being the final factor (because weight is my final factor, and I got all these really cool scales, and a lot of time on my hands, and
    an extra KLR to take apart, but mostly cuz it's MY thread). If no one participates, I'll just stare at it and marvel at my lack of eloquence. Or tell dirty jokes...sing "99 bottles of beer"...
    #1
  2. GB

    GB . Administrator Super Moderator Super Supporter

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    so in other words... don't go chasing a KLR diet..
    #2
    SelfPropelledDevo likes this.
  3. Lizrdbrth

    Lizrdbrth Wackjob

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    You decide.
    #3
  4. GB

    GB . Administrator Super Moderator Super Supporter

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    for me, it's not worth it.. I can lose that much weight just by not filling up my IMS tank all the way! :rofl
    #4
  5. Numbnuts_007

    Numbnuts_007 inseam impaired

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    i work overseas and cannot drink beer for 28 days. so no matter how much weight i take off the bike by the time i have to return to work "I" have added on the weight that i would have taken off the bike lol.
    #5
  6. BikePilot

    BikePilot Long timer

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    That's weird about the bars. My KDX200 bars were super heavy stock and pro-tapers were less than half the weight I'd guess (didn't weigh them, but the difference was huge). Are stock KLR bars aluminum? Or are you using some pro-taper other than the traditional 1 1/8" tapered aluminum unit?

    have fun
    #6
  7. Lizrdbrth

    Lizrdbrth Wackjob

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    I'm cool wit dat. Just thought it might be nice to quantify some of the more common modifications.

    For example, most folks automatically de-Californicate. I haven't. My reasoning for this is that I like to drag my bike into Mexican hotel rooms for securtiy's sake, and can't afford the brain cells that an open system might cost me overnight.

    So I had to find that 20 pounds elsewhere. As a result of that I've learned a few things that may save some others a few bucks, as in the handlebar example. I think most folks assume that an aluminum bar will automatically weigh less than a steel one. The ProTapers don't. They're exactly the same bend as the stockers, so if you're a starving college student whose bars don't vibrate, focus on something else.

    If I were to tell you how to lose a pound or two by rearranging a few things the next time you have the tank off of the bike for a valve adjustment, and that you could even reach the carb from either side of the bike when you were finished, would you be interested?

    There is a lot of unneccesary weight on any production bike. There are a boatload of members here who stare at identical bikes daily. Combine the observations of each and we can all benefit.

    Did you ditch something after staring at it long enough to say "That's in my way. It serves no purpose. What was the factory thinking?" Or "Brand "X" accomplishes the same thing with less weight and complexity. I'll look for the brand "X" part the next time I'm at the salvage yard."

    This thread is fer dat.
    #7
  8. Lizrdbrth

    Lizrdbrth Wackjob

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    ProTaper 7/8's series, in this case. The 1 1/8 series are even heavier.

    I don't mean to impune your guess on the weight of the stock bars, but I happen to have a pair of the ProTaper KX bend bars to weigh. They're only an ounce lighter than the ATV HI bar on my KLR, even though they are a much lower bend and are over an inch shorter.

    ProTapers just "feel" better than the stockers to me. That's worth something. I think they're an excellent product. But I was surprised to find that in reality they are no lighter than stock.
    #8
  9. caffeine

    caffeine Been here awhile

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    were not drag racing KLRs so a few lbs isnt making a difference...hell, if i cna take a shit before every time i ride and equivilate that to not changing out my axles, taking a shit is easier and more enjoyable haha.

    if we were drag racing, we wouldnt be on a KLR and we would certainly be counting .5 ounces of each speed hole we cut in the frame (and taking a shit before the race)
    #9
  10. BikePilot

    BikePilot Long timer

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    Interesting. I guess stock KDX200 bars are a lot heavier than stock KLR bars. I was under the impression that the 1 1/8" pro tapers were lighter than the 7/8" ones (thinner wall section and no cross bar), but I could be wrong on that. Whatever the case, I love pro-tapers for the fact they don't bend easily (I tend to crash a lot), I've never been able to keep a pair of 7/8" bars straight for more than one or two rides, yet I've never bent a pair of oversized pro-tapers enough to notice.

    Oh, and I usually run Pro-taper woods low (exact same bar as pro-taper mini-low) in oversize (and not the new budget "contour" or whatever it is).

    have fun, I'm all for weight reduction, makes a huge difference in how a bike handles.

    Although I think my current off road mount is heavier than stock - that happens when ya dual sport a motocross bike though (still under 220 lbs I suspect).:deal

    I bet a Baja Designs LED tail/brake light would save some weight. You could also take off all the stuff ya don't need (foot pegs, side stand, whatever else you can stand to loose).

    As you mentioned, exhaust is usually a great weight saver on a street legal bike, but you gotta watch the noise etc.

    Only put in as much fuel as you need.

    Plastic tank would probably save some weight.
    #10
  11. shoco

    shoco Not So Gnarly Adventurer

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    I don't own a KLR (anymore), but I think that this thread was a good idea.

    Now that I've given my approval, you can all sleep better.
    #11
  12. Lizrdbrth

    Lizrdbrth Wackjob

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    ZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz...............
    #12
  13. dwayne

    dwayne Silly Adventurer Supporter

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    If you think 20lbs doesn't make a difference you've never had to haul your bike out of a gooy mud hole or pick up your bike the long way on a side hill.

    I ride a 250lb bike in the woods and mountians, I'd much prefer a 240 lb bike.

    A 1/4 pound of unsprung weight for no effort if you do it with a tire change, and probably less than $10...that VERY worthwhile IMHO.

    I wish someone was doing this for my Dakar...if ever a bike needed to lose weight...
    #13
  14. Lizrdbrth

    Lizrdbrth Wackjob

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    Here's something that the scales have taught me so far.

    Take 2 items of identical weight. To make things simple, let's say that the items are tubular. One is 1'2" in diameter, one is 1" in diameter. We humans will at first perceive the larger diameter to be heavier, based on a visual.

    After handling the item physically, we will conclude that the larger item is the lighter of the two. If the items are fairly heavy, we perceive the larger bar to be lighter because it "hurts" less to lift it due to it's greater surface area.

    Add to that our everyday experience which tells us initially that the movie prop styrofoam boulder is really made of stone, and is therefore gonna squish us. If we recognize an item to be made of Unobtainium we will mentally give it the benefit of the doubt because we know that Unobtainium is way cool.
    #14
  15. honcho

    honcho Barley Adventurer

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    if you do the klr250 fairing conversion, or if you have the parts to weigh, let us know how much weight that saves. i'd guess close to 1 lb.
    #15
  16. Lizrdbrth

    Lizrdbrth Wackjob

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    KLR 650 headlight, fairing and bracket ass'y: 81.6 oz.

    KLR 250 " " " " " : 58.0 oz.

    Total saved : 23.6 oz.


    Damned good guess. That's a pound and a half, folks.

    No conclusion as yet, other than Boatman's seat of the pants testimony. He feels that the 250 fairing delivers cleaner air. I plan to put one on my test mule sometime this week. Since I can ride with and without by just hopping on my stocker I should be able to make a better comparison. I'm hoping that there is no major difference and any helmet buffeting can be minimized with some sort of extension. My arnchair engineer's contention has been that the KLR's wide tank frontal area serves as a lower fairing, at least nearly the same extent as the existing fairing. What's left is to clean up the air above it.

    Face it, we're adding fletching to a brick, but if there's no major gain here let's ditch the damned thing.
    #16
  17. Lizrdbrth

    Lizrdbrth Wackjob

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    My first KLR was an old KLR 600 that I purchased new in '85.

    This bike is often scorned for its many weaknesses, but if you really take a hard look at it, it was in many ways superior to the direction Kawasaki chose to take subsequent KLR's. It was wired more intelligently and with fewer components, components were located in more sensible locations, it had better cooling (2 radiators), an aluminum subframe, aluminum kickstand, hollow axles, lower seat height, both kick AND electric start and still weighed a lot less. Even if Kawi had just added the bigger tank and dispensed with the removeable engine cradle (to stiffen the frame) and continued to refine the bike at the snail's pace that they have to date we'd all be riding a better blank canvas to modify.

    Time for a bit of reverse engineering, where it is applicable.
    #17
  18. MaverickAus

    MaverickAus Long timer

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    :lurk
    #18
  19. Lizrdbrth

    Lizrdbrth Wackjob

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    Face it, we're adding fletching to a brick, but if there's no major gain here let's ditch the damned thing.[/quote]

    I noticed something while out riding tonight. It was kinda chilly out, and my knees were getting cold. Just for giggles I reached down and filled the gap between the fairing and the tank with my left hand. No more wind blast on my knee.

    Can any of you who are more informed about aerodynamics speculate on where all that air is going? Is it that the air is being funneled under the bike through the radiator shrouds, or around the bike and somehow widening the wake?

    It might be that by extending the fairing to more closely meet the tank we can increase the effectiveness of same to the point that it actually does something. Or ( my preferred method ) maybe shorten the fairing mounting bracket (there's about 1 1/4 inches of wiggle room on mine before the forks hit it) to narrow the gap.

    Those Dakar fairings are beginning to make more sense.
    #19
  20. Spode

    Spode Malcontent

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    My KDX200's handlebars seemed heavy as hell too... I think there's a solid portion in there. I replaced both the KDX and KLR bars with the Tusk 7/8" aluminum bars.

    Anyway, on my KLR, I also ripped off the California emissions stuff, the stock chain guard, and the sidestand switch and cable. Dunno how much weight savings this adds up to.

    Also replaced the front fender with the Acerbis supermoto fender.

    Next I'll be pulling the front fairing and brackets off and replacing it with either a KLR250 or similar aftermarket headlight shell.
    #20