KLX history

KTA

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#1
i have recently been looking around at KLX's... in most bike's historys there are years where drastic changes were made in the bikes performance.... engine mods, suspention, better brakes, etc... and i was hoping someone could tell me when the KLX had some good improvements so i can buy and older bike without worrying too much..... thanks
 
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#2
well, how bout the year they went to 300 cc?

otherwise, about 6 months after purchasing most bikes start to get much faster, due to the installation of oversize header pipes, pumper carbs, etc...

seriously, they're all pretty much the same. i'm unaware of any significant changes.
mw
 
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#3
KTA,

This is actually pretty easy. Having just purchased a KLX new, it seems that they haven't changed other than paint and graphics since '97. I believe that before that it was a 250. Check out this site and the various links to get a great quick education on the bike. Also, the mailing list link on the site has some members who have been around klx's longer than I, so they might also give some good input. PlanetKLX

I looked at the spec's on the Kawi website (it gives all years), and didn't see anything different '97 forward.

Good luck,
Mark
 
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#4
Yup, this engine had ABSOLUTELY no changes during its life as a 250, and even the change to 300cc was just a displacement change, nothing else.

The engine has actually been in the Kawasaki lineup since the early 80's as the KL, then the KLR (which is also their Mojave quad engine). When they went to the KLX designation, they did their new frame design, better suspension, and went to a nikasil bore and did some cam changes. A better bike than the KLR, but not by much!

They're decent bikes. Work well for a lightweight non-aggressive trail rider. For a waterpumper dual-cam engine, you expect much better power though!
 

penguin

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#5
The KLX is a fine bike for just about anybody. I would not buy any older than the 97 model, the 250 was pretty anemic, the extra 50cc of the 300 makes the bike a pretty decent mount. With a few inexpensive mods the performance is surprisingly good and the frame and suspension are ok and the brakes and handling are good. the only expensive mods I have done to all of my 3 KLX's are a pumper carb, oversized headpipe, aftermarket silencer and stiffer springs front and rear. the Bike has been raced by my son in the Texas cross country series in the 4stroke expert class and has made top 10 finishes against YZ426's and KTM 520's, this is with no internal engine mods, just bolt on parts. A lot of people slam the little green bike but it is a good bargain and a decent performer. :cool:
 
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#6
i would also point out that even tho it can be tuned for high performance, the klx is still exceptionally easy to ride. i've only been riding less than a year in the dirt (but with lots of mountain bike experience), and in my first enduro i was scooting right up stuff that was giving alot of other novices plenty of trouble. i tended to see lots of the same people over and over because me and my easy to ride klx would pass them on the sketchy uphills, but then since i'm a slow, spodely novice, they'd pass me on the high-speed sections.

great bike for a novice to intermediate rider, easy to work on, and now that the ktm 4-strokes are out, there are starting to be good deals on well-cared for, well-sorted out klx's, with all the cool mods.
-mw
 

SFO

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#7
With the advent of the new generation four strokes I have seen alot of these bikes in the tricked out state selling very reasonably.
My buddy is selling his stroker 300 with all the trick
(Email me Seirra Flash, and I'll give you his cell#, he doesn't do computers)
and I just saw one sell that had the kx subframe handmade aluminum tank get up.
You could find a real sleeper that someone has done all the work to already.
 
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#8
KLX

With the advent of the new generation four strokes I have seen alot of these bikes in the tricked out state selling very reasonably.
My buddy is selling his stroker 300 with all the tricks, and I just saw one sell that had the kx subframe handmade aluminum tank get up.
You could find a real sleeper that someone has done all the work to already.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Please have your buddy send me an email about his KLX that is up for sale.
 

SFO

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#9
E mail me Seirra, he doesn't do computers.
I will give you his cell#...
 

dirt bike dave

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#10
From DualSportr: "even the change to 300cc was just a displacement change, nothing else."

I believe the 300 has a slightly more radical camshaft than the 250. My buddy that had a Stroker KLX331 also informed me that the 300 cylinder makes a better candidate for an overbore than the 250, but not sure what the differences are in that department.

A well set up KLX is lots of fun in the woods - it is a sweet handling bike. The stocker's power shortage and suspension are easily fixed. Could use another 1" of ground clearance, but the light weight and low cost are worth making some sacrifices for. :)
 
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#11
DualSportr,
Are you sure the engine is the same as that in the KL and the Mojave fourwheeler. I know the Mojave and the KLR 250 use the same engine but just the other night I was looking at my Mojave engine and comparing it to my brother's KLX 300. The bottom ends look somewhat similar but not identical on the clutch side and the cylinder and head look a lot different from one another. I also thought the KLX used a shim and bucket valve adjustment system while my Mojave uses rocker arms and set screws. Just wondering.

KTA,
I've got a KDX 200 and my brother has the KLX 300, both '00 models. The bikes are very similar in power, acelleration and top speed. I've ridden his KLX and think it is a nice bike. It is a very underrated bike and you don't hear much about them since Kawasaki hasn't done any changes since '97. Now it has been eclipsed by the new Yamaha's. Still, for the price and the features, it is the best bike in it's catagory.
 

DougRoost

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#12
The KLX definitely uses shim and buckets for valve adjustments, both 250 and 300 (I just did mine; same shop manual, the 300 supplement just has differences in torque settings). Also, I believe the 250's had conventional forks while the 300s definitely have the upside down cartridge fork, as well as a better bushed rear swingarm. And one of the magazine reviewers (read the review links on PlanetKLX) noted the 300 suspension was set up much better from the factory as far as ride height and such. So as was said earlier, get a 300 to start with, which means 1997 or newer.

Unfortunately the bikes haven't changed at all since then (one reason they don't get any ink in the press), so other than color and graphics, they're all the same from '97 on. Definitely a good bike for the money, all the mroe so if you get one with a pumper carb and the Stroker idler gear and shift kit fixes.:cool:
 

SFO

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#13
While these bikes have a good cylinder head design, the OE valves are crap.
If you notice your lash needs to be constantly reset you need valves.
I made alot of Stainless valves for Stroker racing just because Kawasaki thought it could pinch some pennies with their valves.
I would of thought they learned their lesson with the valve eating ninja 600...
All the people I knew with these bikes had to replace their valves and after they did, no more weekly shimmings.
 
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#14
Whats up with Kawasaki's four stroke program?

I don't understand why Kawi doesn't have a reply to the YZF wave. If I'm not mistaken, the KLX came out before the YZF, and has a moto frame! Are they a. sleeping at the wheel, b. developing somthing secretly, or c. out of r&d money?
 
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#15
I had an 86 KLR 250, it was a DOG! It ate the valves and blew the motor! I went to the junk yard and got a 80 KL 250 motor and bolted it in. It was air cooled and single overhead cam. the Mojave and KLR top ends are the same, the KLR had a 6 sp tranny, the quad had 5 spd and reverse and the kicker went forward. As far as team greens R and D, they look like a company that is making the best of what it has on the shelf and getting ready to throw the towel in. I can not recall when they had a top of the line anything! Poor fit and finish, and overall quality has keept me away form the green stuff. I agree the KDXs are the best woods bike buy on the floor unless there is a used WR or DRZ in the back! But, why,,,, why why why offer the same bike in 200 and 220 cc!!! whats wrong with those guys! The only one that seems to be busy there is the plastic and sticker department.