Happy Trails Centerstand for Kawasaki KLR650 Review

Happy Trails Centerstand
Happy Trails Centerstand

Most dual-sport riders have a lift or a set of stands in the garage to ease routine maintenance on the chain, or change tires or oil. Out on the trail, though, those jobs get tougher, especially if one of the only two wheels the bike sits on has to be removed to fix a flat. Gee, wouldn’t a centerstand be handy right about then? That’s what the guys at Happy Trails asked themselves, and the answer was a resounding yes in the form of an adjustable bolt-on centerstand for KLR650 models.

If you’ve ever installed an aftermarket centerstand, here’s the best news first—the Happy Trails centerstand comes out of the box as a single piece, fully assembled, with the springs already in place. This alone represents a tremendous savings in sweat, skinned knuckles and profanity. The centerstand mounts to the bottom of the frame, inboard of the footpegs; just remove the pegs, slide the stand up from below, and use the longer bolts that come with the kit to replace the footpegs (and remember, blue Loctite is your friend.)

That’s all there is to it, except remembering that you have to deploy the sidestand before putting the bike on, or taking it off, the centerstand, or the centerstand’s foot will hit the sidestand. The HT centerstand tucks in nicely once everything is folded up; it just has to be the last stand lowered or the first one raised. When you come to a stop you’ll probably put the sidestand down first anyway; just leave it down until you’re back on two wheels and ready to go.

The KLR is popular with riders of all inseam lengths, so the centerstand is adjustable to accommodate stock or lowered rear suspension. Since the raised stand hangs under the frame where it can hit the pavement during spirited cornering, Happy Trails says 1 inch is as far as you should lower the rear end. The KLR I put the stand on had Happy Trails 1.5-inch lowering links, so HT sent along a pair of 1-inchers to replace them. Happily, their installation was made much easier by putting the bike on the newly installed centerstand.

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The adjustable centerstand sells for $149.95 and fits the 1987-2007 model KLR650; the steel lowering links sell for $49.95 a pair for the same years and model, and also come in 0.5- and 1.5-inch applications. The centerstand has already justified its presence with easier chain maintenance, and it also makes checking engine oil before each ride faster since the bike needs to be held vertically to check the sight glass. And if I ever get a flat out on the trail…well, let’s not think about that.

Call (800) 444-8770 or visit happy-trail.com.

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