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Old 06-14-2007, 11:45 AM   #16
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A lot to consider

Appreciate the opinions. I have noticed a slower speed with the 9+ compared to the stocker windshield and cannot reach redline. With luggage I'm afraid to see what will happen. The only way to know is to try I guess. I wanted a slightly higher speed at a lower RPM and perhaps a higher overall speed. I'm starting to wonder if this is possible. I guess I'm just expecting to much of my KILLER if I want speed I should go back to the Ninja ZX6R. I very much like the ability to go offroad when I need to. I do agree that 1st gear now is too high, especialy off the road. But then the killer is not designed to be a great off road muont to begin with. Since my little trip involves others who ride faster bikes I wanted to be more of a contender and not at 6000ish RPM all the time. Right now I can only reach 140 and with the stock windshield 150kph.

Tks, JtB
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Old 06-14-2007, 01:12 PM   #17
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I'm just feeling out my 16t front, and so far (just commuting) I love it. I too got a little worrieda at all the negative feedback, but there's such a wide variety of opinion that I just went for it. Now I can cruise at an indicated 80-85 with power, revs, and sanity to spare. I lost a good 500 rpm freeway cruising.

It also makes makes more gears useable on the street which is kind of nice...with the 15t, unless you like to cruise around at 4k+ in first, you're pretty much using a two speed bike. Second and fifth. Now I can cruise around the parking lot in first, and still use third and fourth for 25-45mph riding.

Not sure how I'll like it on the dirt (I also bought a 14t at the same time for the conversion). Most of the stuff I do is typically second gear with first gear climbs, so we'll see how it does.

Not too worried about gas mileage...I figure its probably not going to change much either way.

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Old 06-14-2007, 01:54 PM   #18
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While some are trying to get the rpms down,I've heard that the KLR's oil pump performs better at 4000+.
I'm running stock 15/43,and 1st feels to high. I dont worry about the rpm range when i'm cruising on the slab in 5th. I actually like the feel at 70 with stock gearing.
But for off road/gravel I think I'd like to try a 14 front.
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Old 06-14-2007, 06:32 PM   #19
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Do what blows yer dress up but don't worry about the oil pump below 4,000 rpm. Mine has 60,000 miles, a good bit of it under 4,000 rpm. No problems. If you wanna see a high first ride a ZX-10R, around 105 in 1st.
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Old 06-14-2007, 09:59 PM   #20
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taller gearing will give you better mileage, and be alittle rougher through town. Just like you have thought.. It cruise's very nicely from 60 to 85 though. Like I said before, you have to have your bike running properly(jetted spot on) to pull the tall gearing. Mine will do it very easy.


Gearing Is the key factor in better gas mileage. Not to argue. But its the main ingredient. Vetter had a contest in which Factory honda showed up to see who get the best gas mileage running normal highway speeds, up highway 101. Every single contestant geared to the moon. Most had custom sprockets because no one made gearing that tall for the bikes used. The winner (vetter himself, go figure) Won with 282 mpg!! Honda crashed but still came in second with 276. The kicker? This contest was done in 1982. The most important key to fuel mileage is the fastest speed possible with the smallest amount of throttle open.

You guys that didn't notice a increase in fuel mileage with taller gearing, never changed your riding style. To benefit from the taller gearing, you have to ease up to your designated speed, not floor it. Throttle control with tall gearing and the least I have gotten is 62mpg, that was with two off road adventures factored in.

So back to your question. A good running KLR will pull a 16 or a 17 well, sorry fellows if your bike doesn 't pull it well, then its not running like it should. I know this because mine used to have fits with a 16, and a lower top speed. So I would suggest to try a 16th, you need to descide if you will be happy with it or not, and its only 15 bucks to do. If you like it, then you might consider a 17. Thats what I have been running now for the last few thousand miles.
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Old 06-14-2007, 10:05 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by East Coast
Appreciate the opinions. I have noticed a slower speed with the 9+ compared to the stocker windshield and cannot reach redline. With luggage I'm afraid to see what will happen. The only way to know is to try I guess. I wanted a slightly higher speed at a lower RPM and perhaps a higher overall speed. I'm starting to wonder if this is possible. I guess I'm just expecting to much of my KILLER if I want speed I should go back to the Ninja ZX6R. I very much like the ability to go offroad when I need to. I do agree that 1st gear now is too high, especialy off the road. But then the killer is not designed to be a great off road muont to begin with. Since my little trip involves others who ride faster bikes I wanted to be more of a contender and not at 6000ish RPM all the time. Right now I can only reach 140 and with the stock windshield 150kph.

Tks, JtB

Yea, I forgot to mention that I have been riding without my windscreen, or my rad shrouds. But I can honestly say that it will pull 115 indicated, no problems with a 17th. Probably alittle more with a 16.

The KLR is still capable of doing a AA enduro trail with a 17 tooth sprocket. But you run the high chances of smoking a clutch.

Hey, you can't have everything.
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Old 06-14-2007, 10:12 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by holycaveman
You guys that didn't notice a increase in fuel mileage with taller gearing, never changed your riding style. To benefit from the taller gearing, you have to ease up to your designated speed, not floor it. Throttle control with tall gearing and the least I have gotten is 62mpg, that was with two off road adventures factored in.
So if you leave your gearing stock and ride easier, I'll bet your fuel consumption goes down too. if you ride easier when you have a 17t, there's no way for you to tell if it is the gearing that gives you the good mileage, or your riding style. I say the riding style has more to do with it. And if you are accelerating slowly, then you are spending less time at the highest cruising speed where drag is greatest. Change gearing and ride normally, no change in mileage. If you only ride easy when you are geared tall, I suppose you could say it is the gear, but really it isn't.

I read the stories about the mileage competitions, too. High compression, tiny valves, way tall gearing, dustbin fairings, and speeds around 30-35mph. That's how you get 180-200mpg. (But not out of a KLR). ;-{>
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Old 06-14-2007, 10:25 PM   #23
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I've just finished a couple tanks with the 16 & milage is up SLIGHTLY (to 51mpg). But I can get near 60 with the stock gearing if I keep it below 4000 RPM. Anyway, I kinda like it at hiway speeds - it is smoother, it's OK on 2 track too, & I also did OK on easy single track. Here's the nut of the deal - it's $22 from Fred - give it a try. And try a 13 for the dirt - that'll make you crack up out loud - you'll have friggin' splash marks on the inside of your visor from foaming at the mouth.
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Old 06-14-2007, 10:32 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by judjonzz
So if you leave your gearing stock and ride easier, I'll bet your fuel consumption goes down too. if you ride easier when you have a 17t, there's no way for you to tell if it is the gearing that gives you the good mileage, or your riding style. I say the riding style has more to do with it. And if you are accelerating slowly, then you are spending less time at the highest cruising speed where drag is greatest. Change gearing and ride normally, no change in mileage. If you only ride easy when you are geared tall, I suppose you could say it is the gear, but really it isn't.

I read the stories about the mileage competitions, too. High compression, tiny valves, way tall gearing, dustbin fairings, and speeds around 30-35mph. That's how you get 180-200mpg.
Like I said, I have tried riding easy with the stock gearing more than anything else. The best I got was 61mpg, which was great, but my speed was limited to 55mph to get this. When I switched to the 17, and tried riding under the same situations, I got 62mpg on the low end, and 68mpg running a steady 70mph on the highway. Throttle control is more tricky than you think. With the 17th front sprocket, you can actually get worse gas mileage. This all depends on how much throttle you are giving it. Because say you give the bike half throttle, now with taller gearing, it takes longer for the rpm's to catch up to the throttle opening, where shorter gearing it catches up sooner, so you waste less gas with the shorter gearing. However if you only open the throttle to the exact rpm(slow to accelerate) you are gaining mileage. Because at the same throttle opening, you are moving faster with the taller gearing than the shorter gearing. Now of course wind resistance comes into play here. If your wind resistance causes you to have to open the throttle more, then you loose mileage. So remember that taller gearing is harder to pull. To run taller gearing efficiently, you have to have your bike running strong, and not too much wind resistance.

I have went to the extent to put gauges on my throttle to record throttle opening to the amount of rpm's. So I know when and what gearing is getting the worse gas mileage. It all factors on how far the throttle is open. YOu want the least throttle opening at the highest speed possible. There is your mpg in a nutshell.

I do mostly city and offroad riding though, so the stock gearing only looses 1mpg for me. However, my bike consumes about 1 quart of oil every tank. So running a 17th front has been a huge benefit on oil consumption, even more than mpg.

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Old 06-14-2007, 11:11 PM   #25
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wow ! a quart of oil every tank of fuel ! I just rode 4400 miles in 2 weeks with a max recorded speed of 88 mph and an average speed for the trip of 68.7 mph and used less than a quart of oil, I'd consider putting some new rings in at the least.

back on topic, there are many things effecting fuel consumption, quality of fuel, ethanol, winds and load. i was going to use a 16t counter sprocket on my trip back east, but due to the load i was hauling, it would have actually destroyed my fuel mileage. I saw my mileage vary from 35mpg in the high head and cross winds of nebraska and iowa, to as high as 49.5 fully loaded while in utah. the saying " your mileage may vary" is just that. riding style , like the last poster said is your greatest issue, ride conservatively and your mileage goes up, twist that right grip hard and push 80 all day and you might as well drive the car. I've riddenin such high head and side winds that just to maintain the flow of traffic, i had the throttle pinned, only to come up on a big rig and as soon as i got in the dead air, had to chop the throttle because my speed shot up by 20mph. there are so many factors it's hard to say what really works, all i can say is from practical experiece. if you travel and carry all your gear, stay with the stock gearing, taller gearing just meanms your going to have to twist the throttle more to just maintain if you run into wind and weather, hills etc.
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Old 06-15-2007, 06:36 AM   #26
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No I wasn't over exaggerating about the oil, or fuel, and it needs more than just rings!
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Old 06-15-2007, 06:46 AM   #27
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oh it's you caveman ! sorry, the pain meds make me loopy, the way you ride yours like a mx bike explains that, i'm in the weekend joy rider catagory compared to you, i sure could have used some of your skills in moab !
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Old 06-15-2007, 07:13 AM   #28
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I switched to the 16 a few weeks ago and found it an excellent improvement for street use. More relaxed on the highway, I carried more speed, and the lower gears were more useful in traffic. You have to feather the clutch a little more but you get used to it quickly.

Personally I'm amazed that anyone could ride a KLR on the dirt trails around here with a 15 tooth sprocket: it seems much too high to thread your way through the hills, curves, and loose soil mixed with rocks.

The switch is really easy, let the rear wheel go all the way forward and you don't even have to remove the chain from the rear sprocket.
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Old 06-15-2007, 07:32 AM   #29
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Originally Posted by garandman
Personally I'm amazed that anyone could ride a KLR on the dirt trails around here with a 15 tooth sprocket: it seems much too high to thread your way through the hills, curves, and loose soil mixed with rocks.
Yep. That's why I am crushed that Kawasaki didn't bite the bullet and do a six speed on the new model. The KLR has always been one of the narrowest ranges from first to fifth of any of the dual sports, and the ratios are unchanged on the new models. They could have spread them out and kept the five speed, but that would have hurt them in the magazine drag strip testing. The wouldn't risk that, and they wouldn't spend the money for a new crankcase.

You know what, Kawasaki? You've been selling the same model with nothing but paint changes for almost 20 years. All the tooling was paid for a decade ago. You could have afforded to do the transmission. If Honda and Suzuki come out with a killer adventure tourer in the next year or two and blow you out of the market it will serve you right.
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Old 06-15-2007, 04:40 PM   #30
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Just got back last week from a run down to San Diego and back with a 16T.

Made the highway (and especially freeway portions) much more relaxed and pleasant. Crusuing on the 5, 405 and the 10 at 75 was no big deal.

Downside was the need to feather the clutch often at low speed and the anemic performance getting started from a dead stop (doubly so uphill).

Also was a tad annoying in the twisties (1, 101 and the like). Tough to find the sweet spot without constantly changing gears. Seemed to always be lugging the beast or winding it up tighter than I wanted to.

I'll probably be doing a run down to CO in the next few weeks. Going back to the 15T for that one.
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