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TOPIC: Fitted a 39T rear sprocket - Feedback

Fitted a 39T rear sprocket - Feedback 3 years 1 month ago #113106

  • xplorer
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I bought my 2013 KLR650 with a 16T front sprocket (vs 15T stock) and stock 43T rear sprocket.

After 2000km, I replaced the chain and both sprockets with stock size (15/43).
Noticed more pullaway torque but uncomfortably high RPM on the freeway.

Last weekend we had a two-day group ride that involved getting to the start in Clanwilliam along the N7, so last week I fitted a 39T rear sprocket, thinking that if a 16 front was good, then a bit more gearing would be "better"....

Pannas rode with 15/38 combo but I wanted to go somewhere inbetween that and the 16/43 combo, so I elected to go with 15/39

Boy, was I wrong... I had to sit at full wide-open throttle all the way and battled to keep up with the group... even the slightest uphill and my speed would rapidly fall to well under 120kph that required gearing down to 4th gear frequently to crawl up the ascents. Going over Piekenierskloof Pass just before Citrusdal was a challenge, toggling between 3rd and 4th gear repeatedly... I have one of those throttle locks which was set to wide open power all the time on the level stretches and still I fell behind. Watching all the other bikes (I was the only KLR in a group of 24) pass me by effortlessly, made me seriously consider looking out for an affordable 650GS or 800GS.

So the bottom line is that it appears that the popular 16/43 combo is still the best option for longer legs on the freeway.

Keen to meet and ride.
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Last Edit: 3 years 1 month ago by xplorer.
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Fitted a 39T rear sprocket - Feedback 3 years 1 month ago #113108

  • Duke916
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Myself very happy with the 16/43 combo, even when going offroad ;)
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Fitted a 39T rear sprocket - Feedback 3 years 1 month ago #113116

  • Piet
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I still feel that the stock 15-43 is a really good compromise. My bike runs well at higher rpm, even though she does drink a bit more oil. She holds 120 km/h easily and the revs are below 6000 (I don't know who decided that 5000 rpm is the magical number that kills KLRs??)

But yes, if you want to sit at 140 km/h all day, then the KLR is definitely not the bike for you (and you'll do well to look at the BMW F800GS!) B)
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Fitted a 39T rear sprocket - Feedback 3 years 1 month ago #113117

  • Pannas
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I too currently have a 39 at the back - but for most of the last 9 years, I have been riding 15/38 and found that just fine for my liking. Combine that gearing with the MC mod, free flow exhaust and of course coastal air pressure... - my bike used to pull like freight train while doing 160 on the freeway. The reason I don't like the 16/43 - there's just not enough room upfront for that big 16t - I found that I had scuff marks on my casing around the front shaft.. a lot of guys will disagree with me, but that's my personal experience. When I do get my bike back from Jorg, with the new motor, I'm considering running it in with the std gearing - as you can't go high revs in any case - might as well have it pull easily and not labour against high speed gearing.


or maybe invest in a demo AT for those long highway stints... :whistle: :dry:
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Fitted a 39T rear sprocket - Feedback 3 years 1 month ago #113119

  • Piet
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Pannas wrote:

or maybe invest in a demo AT for those long highway stints... :whistle: :dry:
Well, that is one way: buy an AT for R150k (second hand) and sell the KLR.

Another way would be to get a more road-biased bike to COMPLIMENT your KLR for the highway stuff. About 25% of the price and you have two bikes...

My dad still has his perfectly good Versys 650 for R39000. Ridden by an old man like an old man. I've updated the thread.
www.klrclan.co.za/forum/for-sale/56038-2...-650-for-sale#112662
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