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Old 05-17-2010, 07:21 PM   #1
Daz the Aussie OP
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Suckers for Punishment. KLR600 Project Bike

Hey all. As Shy has been off 2 wheels for way too long it was time to start to look for a new bike for her. As it's her first bike in a while and she will be learning to become a better off road rider, we didn't want to spend a great deal on a bike, better to start her on something older in case she drops it a few times lol.
At a recent So-Cal bike night event I met Kevan Garret and over the course of the conversation that night he mentioned that he had an old KLR in pieces in his garage that he was letting go pretty cheap, so I was of course interested.
As an aside, Kevan started on this project a while back and started a thread about it here.
Kevan eventually bought a nice late model KLR650 so this project got shelved after he bought a whole heap of parts and bits for the bike.
The story is he bought it from someone who had torn down the engine for some reason (never a good sign), and they had sold it off as is. Kevan got it with good intentions of getting it running but as he admits he is not much of a wrencher. I'm a cheapskate who doesn't mind getting my hands dirty so lets have at it!

Last Friday Kevan delivered the bike and here's what we got.







As well as the bike, we got the original engine (all in pieces..literally!), all the body pieces except the side plastics (M.I.A.), airbox, radiators, a spare engine that is an unknown but turns over so it's not seized, a spare alloy subframe in great condition, 5 new turn signals, a new ignition switch with 2 keys, 2 carbies, a workshop manual, a new folding tip shifter and an assortment of other bits. The bike is also registered in Non-Op status so for $300 the lot we figured if it turned out to not be worth putting together we would get our money back for parts.

After spending some time looking at it and weighing up various options we decided to pull it apart for a clean up.

We discovered an old KLR issue, broken subframe bolt. No big deal as we will be drilling this out to do the subframe bolt upgrade.

After a lot of work we finally got the bolt out that held in the swing arm. It was pretty corroded as we figured it would be, total lack of lubrication anywhere. The swing arm bold thread got damaged in the removal process but I'm hoping a machine shop can recut the thread thus saving us the cost of a new one.

Its looking a bit sad now!


Tomorrow we are going to clean up the spare engine and fit it into the frame, then hook everything up and try to start it and see what we have to work with. Fingers are crossed...
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Old 05-18-2010, 02:46 PM   #2
subybaja
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Cool.

What the hell is that you're using for a stand? Looks like a giant dowel.
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Old 05-18-2010, 05:16 PM   #3
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there is a place in my heart for a basket case resurrection
i have a manual for klr600 if you need so info
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Old 05-18-2010, 07:43 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by subybaja
Cool.

What the hell is that you're using for a stand? Looks like a giant dowel.
Wot "He Above" said..........................
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Old 05-18-2010, 08:08 PM   #5
Oly
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Daz & Shy
Last Friday Kevan delivered the bike and here's what we got.



Fit some pedals and a chain ring to make it a downhill mountain bike.


Seriously though I've noticed the early models have a shorter wheel base. Anyone else notice this?
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Old 05-18-2010, 09:10 PM   #6
Daz the Aussie OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by subybaja
Cool.

What the hell is that you're using for a stand? Looks like a giant dowel.
Umm it could be actually. I'm not sure, my wife asked me if I wanted it as she had it in her workshop at the storage company site she manages and said yeah bring it and it ended up being a bike stand. Its a tad too tall, but doing the job.
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Old 05-18-2010, 09:11 PM   #7
Daz the Aussie OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tdrrally
there is a place in my heart for a basket case resurrection
i have a manual for klr600 if you need so info
Hey thanks for that. we have some kind of manual but it isn't super informative. I will take a look at what it is tomorrow and get back to you!

Daz.
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Old 05-18-2010, 09:23 PM   #8
Daz the Aussie OP
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Todays efforts.

Ok, after much grunting, swearing, scraped knuckles and in Shy's case a pinched finger, we got the engine into the frame after taking it up to the car wash and cleaning all the old grease of it. It wasn't too bad, just a lot of gunk that the chain had thrown on the rear of the engine.


Next was to strip down the old carb. I have a newer one in with all the parts but I thought I might just go ahead and get the old unit cleaned up anyway. Here's what I had to contend with in the float bowl compartment.



Cleaned up pretty nice after about an hours work.




It was a straightforward job to mount it to the rear of the engine, and we added half the exhaust in readiness for a start in the next day or two.

I bought some oil, a new filter and a spark plug as well, but then discovered that I didn't have the right size plug socket for this bike as it takes an 18mm deep wall socket to fit. After a trip to Pep Boys to get a new one it was too late to do anymore by the time I got home. Hopefully tomorrow we will kick this thing into life. Stay tuned folks.
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Old 05-19-2010, 04:18 AM   #9
mjydrafter
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Cool bike. Is it a '85 or '86?

Mines a '85, with bits from a '86.

Let me know if you run into any specific problems as I've been through mine from stem to stern. It's my daily driver.

Edit: unplug that fan and carefully set it aside. They are somewhat fragile.
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Old 05-19-2010, 09:07 AM   #10
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I had an '85 model with an Acerbis aftermarket tank, a top-drawer Works Performance remote-res rear shock, fork work, and many other mods. That bike was way better off road than the 2 KLR650's I had later on in life. It was lighter, handled better with better geometry, and was just much better when pushed hard off road. Frankly I regretted replacing it with a 650.
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Old 05-19-2010, 03:09 PM   #11
Daz the Aussie OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mjydrafter
Cool bike. Is it a '85 or '86?

Mines a '85, with bits from a '86.

Let me know if you run into any specific problems as I've been through mine from stem to stern. It's my daily driver.

Edit: unplug that fan and carefully set it aside. They are somewhat fragile.
It's registered as an '86, but I think it was an '85 manufacture date. Thanks for the tip on the fan, I did as you instructed and put in a safer place

Daz.
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Old 05-19-2010, 03:49 PM   #12
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I am watching this thread. Very interested to see how well it runs.
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Old 05-19-2010, 04:09 PM   #13
Daz the Aussie OP
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IT LIVES!!!!...well, sort of...

K, so I sat down this morning to sift through the wiring and to reconnect connectors and most of that went fairly smoothly. When it came time for the battery leads it was a bit more confusing but after getting a bit of info from the manual I figured it out. There was an extra black lead but eventually I came to the conclusion that it must connect to the starter motor and yep, it did.
Next, I put oil in the engine and connected up the new ignition switch by just plugging it into the connector located behind the front light cowling.


Then I got my GS and moved it close enough to connect jump cables from it's battery to the battery leads on the KLR. When I turned on the ignition switch I got dash lights! Looking good...


I rigged up a fuel line connected to a funnel...



I dumped some fuel into the line then had to connect an overflow line into a can after some came out of the bottom of the carby overflow outlet...


Ok, time to hit the starter...


As you can see, lots of blue smoke, never a good sign. Had some wicked long flames out the exhaust as well! Now granted, this engine hasn't been started in a long time, but I ran it a couple of times and it was still smoking so it looks as if we might be looking at a top end rebuild. Over lunch we were discussing where to go with this next when I got a PM from one of the inmates here, offering us a whole bike if we were willing to go get it. Never one to look a cadeau equine in the dental orifice, I of course accepted this generous offer so hopefully we will then have another option to ponder. Heck, who knows where this is gonna lead?
So for now I will continue to tear down this bike and start to clean up the various pieces in readiness for what ever comes next.

Daz.
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Daz the Aussie screwed with this post 05-19-2010 at 09:45 PM
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Old 05-19-2010, 05:49 PM   #14
mjydrafter
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You can pop that valve cover off and take a look at the cams and cam journals pretty easy. It takes a bit of wiggling but it'll come off.

Is that a Yokahama tire on the rear? My parts bike had low miles and had a pair of those on it. I think they might be the originals. I don't know for sure, though.

Very cool of one of the inmates. Hopefully you can make at least one good runner out of what you have.
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Old 05-19-2010, 05:51 PM   #15
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I had the exact bike for a do it all in my last two high school years. No car thank you. Mine wore the chrome off of the carb slide early on and it gave me trouble for it. Also had a terrible habit of the airboot coming off the carb. Hence the worn slide and two top end rebuilds. Could well be my heavy handed young mechanical skills but i learned to check the boot regularly.

I'd love to ride one just for flashback memories. I think 10 minutes would do as i truely appreciate how good modern bikes are.
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