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Old 10-01-2006, 09:07 PM   #1
Mr.Grumpy OP
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Klx 650 Vs. Klr 650

I know that a couple of you guys have or had the KLX version. How would you compare them in the dirt and on the street vs. each other. I had two KLRs, so I am kinda familiar with them, but never a KLX. I had a DRZ. I'd rather a little more dirt performance but with out the uncomfortableness of a DRZ or the wicked high revs at freeway speed. This bike is to be used as a dual sport for dual sporting to dirt. That is to be it's primary function. I friggin HATE these "VS." threads, but I'd like to hear from those that have BTDT.

ken
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Old 10-01-2006, 10:56 PM   #2
itsatdm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr.Grumpy
I know that a couple of you guys have or had the KLX version. How would you compare them in the dirt and on the street vs. each other. I had two KLRs, so I am kinda familiar with them, but never a KLX. I had a DRZ. I'd rather a little more dirt performance but with out the uncomfortableness of a DRZ or the wicked high revs at freeway speed. This bike is to be used as a dual sport for dual sporting to dirt. That is to be it's primary function. I friggin HATE these "VS." threads, but I'd like to hear from those that have BTDT.

ken
Fearing a trap, I will respond anyway, You realize that there a 2 KLX models. The R version is dirt only bike with adjustable suspension, no battery,and kick start. The C version has all the street equipment and the magic button. Kawasaki list the weight of the C and KLR as the same, I think both weigh more than listed though the C feels much less top heavy. A lot of that may be due to the 3.2 gal fuel tank.
The C version has 43mm non adjustable USD forks. They are much more rigid than a KLR, have 11 in. of travel and for a casual #200 rider like myself, just fine. Any attempt to improve them for someone faster or heavier will require custom springs? (progressive may have them) . The shock is adjustable for preload only, with 10 inches of travel. The 93 model shock is suspect later models OK. Replacement shocks will be difficult to find. In the dirt, the KLX will feel lighter and soak up bigger bumps than a KLR but not in the same class of a Honda or Husquavarna.
The engines have the same bore and stroke, and share a lot of parts, though the cases and heads are different. The cams are driven by 2 chains with a gear connecting them. Same gearing, same carb. same redline equals same top speed, though a stronger midrange.
The KLR has the better creature comforts. The C seat is a 2x4 and there is little wind protection.
These bikes can often be picked up cheaply and if you like to tinker, the wind,seat and fuel capacity can be addressed for less then a comparable year KLR. So I guess my answer is, if you stumble on a cheap good one, jump on it. Otherwise you should look for a more common model
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Old 10-02-2006, 06:16 AM   #3
BOUNTY HUNTER
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Sounds like you would be better off with a Honda XR 650 L...NOT the 650 R. I'm on my 2nd KLR and sold my 650L last year. The bike was MUCH better off road and decent on the road. If you go this route...BUY A BIGGER TANK! The stock XR tank is tiny and you WILL be walking before you get 90 miles. There are a couple 5 (?) gallon tank options from the after-market and a larger selection of sprockets / ratios than there is for the KLR / KLX. The XR has won Dirt Bike Magazines Best Dual-Sport Award for something like 10+ years in a row and is a very simple bike. Air cooled, great suspension, 18" rear wheel for better tire selection, lighter than either KLR or KLX C and usually can be had for about $2,000 used. They have remained virtually unchanged for 10+ years now. Hope this helps you out.
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Old 10-02-2006, 07:32 AM   #4
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I tried to help a buddy outfit his klx "C" model last year for long distance dirt riding. We hit a roadblock at the tank. There is NO aftermarket for that bike at all. No tanks or seats are readily available. One guy has retro fitted an R model acerbis tank but other than that, there is no information, no active internet groups, and parts are scarce. I'd pass
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Old 10-02-2006, 08:12 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yater
I tried to help a buddy outfit his klx "C" model last year for long distance dirt riding. We hit a roadblock at the tank. There is NO aftermarket for that bike at all. No tanks or seats are readily available. One guy has retro fitted an R model acerbis tank but other than that, there is no information, no active internet groups, and parts are scarce. I'd pass
now THAT is something that I was worrying about last night after I posted this. There are so few of these things to begine with, what's the chance that I'll be able to get parts (never mind farkels) if I need them. Still, I like Kawasakis and it's sorta a KLR but beter (in theory) in the dirt. There are a couple of bikes that I'm going to look at so we'll see. One is a XR650 too!
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Old 10-02-2006, 08:31 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr.Grumpy
now THAT is something that I was worrying about last night after I posted this. There are so few of these things to begine with, what's the chance that I'll be able to get parts (never mind farkels) if I need them. Still, I like Kawasakis and it's sorta a KLR but beter (in theory) in the dirt. There are a couple of bikes that I'm going to look at so we'll see. One is a XR650 too!
OEM parts won't be a problem for a long time, aftermarket parts are few and getting fewer all the time.

A DR650 or XR650L would be a big step up in off road ability from a KLR (IMO), but still very much dual sport bikes and very street worthy in stock form.

A XR650R dual sported would be a bit more uncivilized, but is very capable off road, much more so than the XR-L or DR.

A TE650 is roughly as good off road as a XR-R, but has an extra gear, less vibs and is factory street legal - probably a bit more civilized on the street, but not as comfy as the other 650class factory dual sports.

have fun.
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Old 10-02-2006, 08:49 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by BikePilot
OEM parts won't be a problem for a long time, aftermarket parts are few and getting fewer all the time.

A DR650 or XR650L would be a big step up in off road ability from a KLR (IMO), but still very much dual sport bikes and very street worthy in stock form.

A XR650R dual sported would be a bit more uncivilized, but is very capable off road, much more so than the XR-L or DR.

A TE650 is roughly as good off road as a XR-R, but has an extra gear, less vibs and is factory street legal - probably a bit more civilized on the street, but not as comfy as the other 650class factory dual sports.

have fun.
I'm looking at the '96 KLXc, a '97 XRL a 1990 DR530 with an oil leak, and old XT350, a couple of KLRs and a 2k KLX300 that's street legal. There is a guy in WMass selling a 2k KTM 400 exc thats SL, but apparently in 2k they made KTMs out of gold instead of orange plastic. There is a nice converted DRZe around, but the guy wants too much money for that too. There is also a street legal 650r out there but I hink that that is too much of a good thing for my dirt riding skilz. There are NO Dr650s to be found.

This bike is to serve for comuting and dirt biking and going far afield with myself or riding buddies. Next spring we are gettting a DL1k, so it needs to fill none of those "big bike" roles. I am actualy prety excited about that KLX. With every one going nuts about the KLX250 on this site, the 300 must be even better AND it has sixth gear so it won't sound like it's ready to explode if I have to ride it at highway speeds.
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Old 10-02-2006, 11:21 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr.Grumpy

This bike is to serve for comuting and dirt biking and going far afield with myself or riding buddies. Next spring we are gettting a DL1k, so it needs to fill none of those "big bike" roles. I am actualy prety excited about that KLX. With every one going nuts about the KLX250 on this site, the 300 must be even better AND it has sixth gear so it won't sound like it's ready to explode if I have to ride it at highway speeds.
My good friend bought a KLX250S, and has been generous enough to let me ride the hell out of it.

It'll do highway speeds just fine. I'm 5'11" with a 31" inseam, weighing 175lb, and I'm just fine on this bike. It does highway just fine too, though I have noticed that the geometry is really designed for lower speed travel and as such would serve you much better on the highway with a steering damper.

I took his for a ride yesterday, all of it above 75mph (to 95mph indicated) for a 40 mile stretch. The throttle was relatively pinned but the bike did just fine. There was a high freq vibe in the seat, but not uncomfortable, it was just there, letting you know you were on a small cc bike. Plenty of room to redline, but not much in the way of passing power. If you're much bigger, just count on 75mph as your average top speed.

As a commuter, this thing is incredible. The suspension is fantastic as is the fuel economy. It sits great and is a blast to ride. I think it is every bit as effective, if not moreso, as a KLR around town, and I really don't see that there's enough of a difference on the highway to avoid the KLX250S over the KLR.

Offroad this thing just plain rips! I know some riders here complain about lack of power but it is quite a bit more powerful than my TTR-125, and I have a blast on that thing. It gets as much air as you'd like, and soaks up bumps like a true dirtbike. All that travel gets used offroad, and I cannot express how much more fun this light bike is than a KLR.

Would I love to find a KLX250S with the 350cc conversion done? Heck yeah! More power is always good, but I don't think it is mandatory here. Now, if it did have more power, I'd conside r swapping the sprocket to a more highway friendly one long trips, and after doing that, I think it could be every bit as highway-worthy as a KLR (wind protection aside).

Consider this bike. Price and performance seem to be at odds with eachother; meaning it's a great value for how much performance you get. Since you're looking at a dirt-able DS machine, this would be hard to beat.
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Old 10-02-2006, 10:35 PM   #9
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itsatdm is genius on klx. the fuel problem can be solved, R acerbis tank, r seat, or itstdm used a aftermarket side tank, run a search on his bike. ditto on seat. most 650 seats are shit anyway. the xr650 is a great bike but when comparo dont forget its aircooled, the klx water. both have there advantages.

the klr is a comfy ol' couch, klx has a firmer feel. all of these are heavy pigs on single track., they are dual sports.
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Old 10-03-2006, 09:30 AM   #10
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I love mine. I just put a plate on her and have been driving the local roads and even better, the utility paths. Plus both bikes and some spare parts for $900! I couldn't say no.
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