Posted by: caryandjohn | March 28, 2012

Resurrecting the KLR?

I had just ordered new tires, a new chain and new front and rear sprockets and a new clutch from my friend Jen at our favorite independent motorcycle shop in preparation for the Mendo Rally, the Funduro and the Sheetiron in May …

I asked her to change the oil, too, as an afterthought, and went home all proud of myself for making good progress on the poor bike after trashing it in Death Valley in January …

Jen called me about an hour after I got home …

“Bad news, John … We found a ton of debris and broken engine bits in your oil … ” she said.

“Uh oh! Sounds like I shouldn’t spend any money on it?”

“No, I think it’s coming from the bottom end … I didn’t order your parts …”

So, that was it … I hung up the phone, and had a moment of silence for the I’d gotten from Phil Bowman about seven years ago … It had a hard but good life …

What to do? I could buy a new bike … Or … I could try to Resurrect The KLR! I had an old parts bike, a 1993 “Barbie” that has slowly been morphing into my 2001 bike.

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Jen had sold the parts bike to me after I’d borrowed the tank when mine sprang a leak … So today I got the engine removed from the donor-cycle … Took me about four hours …

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Making some room to work in the garage …

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And voila! One 36,000 mile, clean, 1993 engine, ready to be put into the 2001 KLR … Off the top of my head my KLR has taken me from the Arctic Circle to Baja, the Canadian Rockies to Montana and the Sierras, the Carrizo Plain, the Mendocino National Forest and Death Valley … hopefully I can get this donor engine installed and running …

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