Archive for the ‘Farckles’ Category

KLR650 Safari Tank 3 Month Review

Posted: September 22, 2015 in Farckles
Tags:
35L [~8.3 gal] and room for more!

35L [~8.3 gal] and room for more!

So it’s been about 3 months riding my modified KLR650 with a Safari Tank. I thought I would share my thoughts to this point. I’ve been commuting with the bike between 2-4 times/week. I haven’t done any dirt or any touring in this time.

What I like:

  • holds 35-40L of fuel
  • range is ~700-750kms
  • extra fuel is carried low so bike feels very stable
  • no handling issues
  • tank replicates fairing shrouds for some wind protection
  • tank seems rugged/durable
  • easy to visually gauge fuel left in tank
...side view

…side view

What I don’t like:

  • tank was a pain in the ass to mount
  • required remove of stock AIS system and mounting bracket
  • tank is slippery when standing and “grabbing” tank with knees
  • last few litres is below petcock jury is out on how much you can actually use
  • location of petcock is a bit hard to reach while riding
  • non-locking fuel cap a bit of a pain to mount a tank bag
Front-side view...

Front-side view…

All in all I’m happy with the big tank. The extra fuel capacity turns the KLR into a long-haul machine with little downside on the handling front. As a commuter I’m down to 1 fill up/month or so which is nice.

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Mobile!

Mobile!

It’s so nice to be rolling again on the KLR. Not having a moto during the summer sucks. I may have to re-evaluate my 1 bike policy in light of this downtime. 😉

Done for now...

Done for now…

Glad to announce my bike is rolling again! 🙂 Got everything I need to done – for now.

Back end...

Back end…

I’ll swap out those rear turn signals next time I have a free wrenching day.

35L [~8.3 gal] and room for more!

35L [~8.3 gal] and room for more!

I did a sort test ride, The bike feels way different with that much fuel on board and sounds different with the plastic tank.

Seat and side guards back on...

Seat and side guards back on…

Got a lot done on the KLR today:

  • Tank mounted [took 3 guys to “encourage” everything to line up!]
  • Tank fuel lines installed using existing external fuel filter
  • Partially filled to check for leaks [so far so good!]
  • Upper rad bracket fabricated and installed
  • Seat reinstalled
  • Side guards reinstalled
  • Trail Tech Vapor dash mounted to back of fairing
  • Tach sensor wired in
  • Engine temp sensor wired in
  • Turn signals wired and tested

Tomorrow should be the last day of work:

  • Replace upper triple bolts with longer ones
  • Wire in speedo
  • Test Vapor dash
  • Test fuel delivery
  • Fill tank
  • Add coolant
  • Bolt on fairing
  • Test ride

I’m going to also swap in matching small flexy rear turn signals, but I’ll tackle that another weekend. I just want to get the KLR back on the road.

Turn signals installed...

Turn signals installed…

Got a little further today. Mostly wiring which you can’t see.

Front view...

Front view…

But I got everything fitted so I can see what it will look like.

Front side view...

Front side view…

One of the things I love about the KLR is the ergonomics. The bike fits me very well.

...standing and sitting.

…standing and sitting.

Everything in its place - more or less!

Everything in its place – more or less!

I’m trucking away at the install of the Britannia Composites fairing and Safari Tank on my KLR650. Not done yet, but at least it’s starting to look like a new machine.

Probably 2 more weeks until I am done as I can only work on it sporadically.

A bit of a side view...

A bit of a side view…

Just unboxed...

Just unboxed…

Here is a sneak peak of my Britannia Composites Lynx R fairing that’s going on my KLR650. Two features I am stoked about are the powerful dual lights and adjustable screen.

THe stock 2008+ KLR lights are fine, but nothing amazing when it gets dark. Couple that with my aging eyes and I’ve been wanting more lumens on the road. Accessory lights are a cheap and cheerful way to add brightness to your lights, but I hate having extra stuff hanging off the bike that’s most likely going to be ripped off first time the bike takes a nap. With powerful main lights they are clean, simple and protected from all, but the worst crashes.

No single fairing will work for everyone so it’s a total crapshoot if you buy a fairing whether it will be better or worse than what you currently have. At least with an adjustable fairing you can find the sweet spot that works best for protection and reduction in wind noise. For a dualsport it’s also great that you can lower it out of the way for offroad riding.

I’m hoping to get this installed in the next couple weeks.

EDS Tuff Lites

Posted: March 19, 2015 in Farckles
Click to jump to product page...

Click to jump to product page…

I’m just leaving this on my blog so I can find it later when I need new signal lights.

New KLR Bling…

Posted: March 9, 2015 in Farckles, Uncategorized
Britania Composites Lynx R on a BMW...

Britania Composites Lynx R on a BMW…

I’ve decided to upgrade the KLR650 a little. I’m getting a Britania Composites Lynx R fairing like the one shown above.

Safari Tank...

Safari Tank…

I’ll be replacing the stock tank with a 31L Safari Tank.

Trail Tech Vapor Dash...

Trail Tech Vapor Dash…

The stock instrument cluster will be replaced by a Trail Tech Vapor dash.

Current configuration...

Current configuration…

Once I get the new parts installed I’ll be selling all the bits that come off for 50% of their cost:

  • Happy Trails Rallye Kit [$70 USD]
  • Happy Trails Crash Bars [$150 USD]
  • Stock instrument cluster
  • Stock front fairing
  • Stock gas tank
  • Stock front fender [$25 USD]
  • Baja Worx Dakar windscreen [$75 USD]
  • shipping extra

 

BMW GS with MTB...

BMW GS with MTB…

The only thing I like more than riding my moto is riding my mountain bike so if I can combine the two I would be very very happy! 🙂

I saw this setup down in Sedona AZ over Christmas and it looks ideal for what I need to do.

MTB rack attaches to rear of moto...

MTB rack attaches to rear of moto…

I’ll have to do a bit of research on this bike rack, but if it all looks good I think I’ll get one for the summer.

Fork close up...

Fork close up…

I need to confirm that it will work with my bikes that have 15mm & 20mm thru-axle forks as well as one that has a standard QR fork. Since those are all pretty common these days I’m assuming the rack can accommodate them.

Rear view...

Rear view…

2009 KLR650 – before…

Click here to read a good thread over at ADVrider.com about installing a 10 gallon tank on a 2008+ KLR650 started my MacG.

IMS 10gal tank installed…

Touratech metal headlight guard for the 2008+ KLR650…

I just noticed that Touratech now offers a metal wire headlight guard for the 2008+ Kawasaki KLR650 motorcycle.

Touratech headlight guard…

My 2010 KLR650 with wire headlight guard installed…

I’ve been after a wire headlight guard since last summer. My DIY efforts failed to produce anything useful so I was really happy to find someone selling a production unit on EBay.

Guard close up…

For under $50 it’s hard to beat this guard and it looks sweet as it protects your expensive headlight assembly.

Guard attaches via well nuts you have to install…

To install the guard you have to drill 4 holes in your fairing where the well nuts that come with the guard are placed and the guard then bolts on securely to them. Total install takes 5 min without a beer and 10 min with a beer.

Front view…

The guard came at the perfect time. I’m about to spoon on some Michelin T63 knobbies so I can ride up to Lake Nitnaht on forest service roads to kiteboard. All that gravel riding is bound to send some rocks my way from passing vehicles.

Side view…

$50 is cheap insurance for rock damage.

The complete KLR ready to rumble…

Giant Loop Fandango Tank Bag on my KLR650…

It’s a bit sad, but I’ve been riding motorcycles since I was 17yrs old and never owned a nice tank bag. I couldn’t afford it as a student and I think my bargain hunting mentality stuck with me through the years. I guess I am older and wiser now because I when I looked at what I had for old tank bags I cringed at the junk I saw. So I poked around online and decided to try out a Giant Loop Fandango tank bag which I bought from Moto Overland. Dave at Moto Overland was very helpful getting me the colour I wanted and making me aware of some changes to this tank bag’s harness that was important for a KLR owner. I will definitely be buying future gear from Moto Overland.

Product info stolen from Moto Overland – click on image to see larger…

I’ll let you read all the product details for yourself. You can click on the image above to see them or jump to the Giant Loop product page or the Moto Overland product page.

What did I like about it?:

  • decent size at 10L without being goofy large
  • robust construction can take some abuse
  • water resistant [can be waterproofed with seam sealer on stitching]
  • harness fits KLR650’s tank well
  • looks nice on the bike

Harness on my KLR…

The Fandango now sports a new style of harness that can be seen in my photo above. For the KLR the new version of harness is important as it allows easy access to the gas cap. If you look at the older harness shown in the product image one down from the top of the post you’ll see a much smaller cut out for the gas cap which required KLR owners to hack away some of the harness to position the tank bag properly.

Tank bag partially unzipped to allow access to gas cap…

Installing the Fandango is a 2 min exercise. All you have to do is attach one strap under the front part of the KLR’s frame and 2 side straps around the frame below the gas tank. You can leave the harness on 24/7 so you can simply zip on the tank bag and ride. When you want to add some gas you unzip the Fandango part way and flip it to the side for access to the gas cap.

My beast with the Fandango installed…

The Fandango sits up high out of the way when you are sitting or standing on the KLR. The harness holds it securely even on rough terrain and the modest size helps prevent you from overloading the bag.

Fandango unzipped….

The beefy zippers on the bag and harness work well and can take a beating. I would recommend occasionally lubricating them with some paraffin wax to keep them trucking for the long haul.

Old style map case…

You’ll notice in these pictures that my Fandango has a map case on top with a zipper you access from the top right of the bag. This is in fact the older style Fandango and the newer version has a map case you access from inside the bag. The reason for the change is to make the map case more waterproof. I preferred easier access so I grabbed one of the older style bags.

Cockpit view…

Speaking of waterproofness the material this bag is made from is waterproof, but the seams where it is stitched are not. Giant Loop provides a tube of Seam Seal to allow you to waterproof the bag if desired. I haven’t bothered with that yet as I don’t ride in the pouring rain much, but I may get around to it prior to leaving for a potentially wet road trip. As is the bag is water resistant enough to deal with some rain without letting in a bunch of wetness. I would also recommend not putting your cellphone at the very bottom of the bag where water would collect if it does get inside. I had a look at the Ortlieb tank bag that is waterproof from the factory, but I found the access was poor and didn’t want to deal with a PITA bag every time I needed something just to get the waterproof feature.

Side view…

Since the Fandango tank bag is a robust piece of adventure gear I’ll need more than a few months to test how durable it really is. I’ll be reporting back every year or so and letting you know what’s happening with it. So far so good though and if you need a nice tank bag for your KLR650 I’d recommend taking a look at this one.

Wire headlight guard for 2008+ KLR650…

I’ve been looking for a wire headlight guard for my 2010 KLR650 for a while now. I tried to modify a Touratech BMW guard unsuccessfully and sort of gave up on the project as it was getting expensive and wasn’t going to look awesome.

Front view…

Happily a member over at ADVrider.com pointed me to Ebay where I found these guards for sale. Just search for “KLR headlight guard”.

Not bad for under $50…

They are a bit under $50US + shipping. I ordered one and will post a review when I get it.

Vetter Alcan Fairing…

Posted: October 20, 2011 in Farckles, Touring

Vetter Alcan fairing prototypes on BMW650 and KLR...

If you are looking for an uber adventure touring fairing for your KLR – look no further than the Vetter Alcan Fairing shown above. Here is what they are saying at the Vetter Site:

“The Alcan Fairing is – obviously – being developed for traveling the Alcan Highway. To start with, it must be rugged. Therefore, the basic structure is aluminum. I am assuming that it will be cold and rainy – all the way. Our son, Zak has put thousands of miles on the #7 Alcan Fairing prototype on his KLR, riding daily 25 miles to work. Recently, he has been riding in California’s El Nino rain. He arrives absolutely dry! He has no rain suit, either. This is a good start.”

Lube your chain…

Posted: October 18, 2011 in Farckles, How To...
Tags:

Happy Trail centerstand makes me happy when lubing my chain...=-)

Barkbusters VPS plastics and bar end weights installed…

I ordered my Barkbusters with Storm plastic shields which provide a ton of hand protection from cold air & rain [see photo below].

Barkbusters full coverage Storm plastic hand shields…

The Storm plastics work great, but they provide so much protection that they make for hot hands on a warm day.

Smaller VPS plastics and bar end weights…

So I ordered up some of the smaller Barkbuster VPS plastic shields so I’d have some options.

VPS plastics screw on in a minute or two…

You can swap these plastics in a few minutes to go from a winter setup to something a lot less extreme. I’ll be using the VPS plastics most of the time and only swap in the Storm plastics if I have a long road trip with gnarly weather on the menu.

Low profile bar end weights…

When I first installed my Barkbusters I reused the stock KLR bar end weights. They work fine with these handguards, but their shape means that even a slow speed tumble would rip them off and probably leave the rest of the mounting bolt in the end of the handle bar – not good!

Crash worthy!

The Barkbuster low profile bar end weights are shaped to slide in a crash and should survive a bunch of abuse while still helping keep bar vibration to a minimum.

Note the removable black spoilers...

I used Barkbusters handguards on my 1997 KLR650 and they served me well so I expect good things from these ones as well. I will report back with a long term review after the winter.

Happy Trail KLR650 centerstand…

I don’t have a motorcycle lift at home and I like being able to work on my bike anywhere I find myself on tour.  A centerstand makes many maintenance jobs much easier – like fixing a flat tire or lubing the chain. I know that the easier I make it to take care of my bike the more likely it is that I’ll do the regular maintenance that she needs.

The stand mounts using the two footpeg bolt holes…

So I ordered up a Happy Trail KLR centerstand. I’ve been pleased with the quality of the other Happy Trail products I’ve bought and they are very easy to deal with when it comes to getting stuff shipped to Canada.

Step 1 – remove footpeg mounting bolts…

The instructions provided were dead easy to follow and the whole process took under 15 minutes.

Don’t forget the Loctite!

The centerstand bolted right on. All the mounting holes lined up without any hassles.

You’ll need:

  • 13mm & 14mm socket
  • 13mm wrench
  • 6mm allen key
  • blue Loctite
  • beer [optional]

Doesn't lift the rear wheel in deep gravel...

Once you bolt the stand on the bike you have two adjustments you can make:
  1. bike height – higher or lower depending on tires and if the suspension has been lowered
  2. side to side adjustment to clear swing arm if needed
I didn’t bother messing with either adjustment as the stand worked fine as setup from the factory. You’ll notice the rear wheel isn’t off the ground in deep gravel, but it does get lifted on a hard surface which is great for lubing the chain.

Underside view from the right...

The KLR rolls up onto the centerstand fairly easily. Happy Trail offers a lifting handle to provide a handy spot for lifting the bike onto the stand. It’s not essential, but I can see that it would be useful and I’ll grab one next time I am ordering from them.

Underside view from the left…

The stand works fine with the Happy Trail skid plate as you’d expect. You have to deploy the sidestand to put the centerstand up or down. The centerstand can handle the weight of the bike and luggage, but don’t do anything goofy like trying to ride your KLR off the stand or jumping up and down like a madman while sitting on the bike on the stand. ALthough Happy Trails doesn’t suggest it’s a good idea I think the centerstand can handle the weight of a rider and bike as long as you are just sitting still.

I’ll report back with a long term review of this stand after my winter trip to Baja.

No longer stock...

I figured a thread that lists all the farckles done to my Kawasaki KLR650 dualsport motorcycle would be useful. I’ll keep this post updated and move it back to the top when I add something new to her.

Body/Comfort:

  • stripped decals
  • custom decals
  • Bajaworx Dakar windscreen [pulled off]
  • Happy Traill Rallye Kit + stock KLR windscreen
  • 30mm bar risers
  • Happy Trail highway pegs
  • Blindspot mirrors [fail!]
  • JNS large side stand plate
  • Moose Racing Offset foot pegs
  • KTM Super Moto fender
  • Happy Trail centerstand
Protection:
  • Barkbusters Storm hand guards
  • Happy Trail engine guards
  • Happy Trail crash bars
  • Happy Trail skid plate
  • rear master cylinder guard
  • JNS radiator guard
Engine:
  • rare earth magnet on oil filter
  • magnetic drain plug
  • 16T sprocket
  • fuel filter
Electrical
  • maintenance free sealed battery
Suspension:
  • Happy Trail fork brace
Navigation:
  • Garmin Vista CX GPS
  • Touratech GPS mount
  • SPOT Messenger
  • RAM SPOT mount
Luggage:
  • Happy Trail soft luggage racks
  • Aerostich large tank panniers
  • Ortlieb motorcycle panniers
  • Seal Line 70L dry bag
  • Rok ajustable MC straps
  • small bungee net
Clothing/Gear:
  • Joe Rocket Ballistic 10.0 jacket
  • Olympia Moto-X jacket and pants
  • Icon Interceptor visibility vest
  • Aerostich heated vest [not installed]
  • Five MC gloves
  • Oakley sunglasses Gascan large
  • Buff neck warmer
  • BMW Santiago boots
  • Respro Hump reflective backpack cover