Kawasaki KLX110 Wheels and Tires Upgrade

Welcome to another edition of our Kawasaki KLX 110 rebuild, in which we upgrade the wheels and tires on a 2006 KLX 110 to convert it into a pit bike.  

We're planning on putting an adult rider on this soon-to-be pit bike, so we’re upgrading the rims, spokes, tires and tube. Watch the video above or read on below to learn about our 2006 Kawasaki KLX110 wheels and tires upgrade project. 

Tools and Parts - Kawasaki KLX 110 New Wheels and Tires

Buy motorcycle front wheel spoke set

Buy motorcycle rear wheel spoke set

We’re upgrading this KLX 110 with Dunlop Geomax tires, which have a stronger sidewall and will be able to handle more stress than the bike’s current tires

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels and tires upgrade Dunlop Geomax

We’re also installing Excel Takasago front and rear rims, which have an outstanding reputation of quality and durability, and are easy to lace up with new spokes.

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels and tires upgrade Takasago rims

Those spokes will be sets from BBR, which have a little bit thicker diameter, and are going to be mounted to the existing hub on the inside. And to keep everything inflated, we’re installing IRC tire tubes, which are a little bit heavier and are also able to handle the stresses of a heavy rider on this machine. 

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels and tires upgrade IRC tubes

2006 Kawasaki KLX 110 Aftermarket Wheels and Tires Upgrades

Step 1. Lift the bike up on a motorcycle stand.

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels and tires upgrade jack stand

Step 2. Remove the cotter pin on the rear axle bolt, followed by the axle bolt itself. 

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels and tires upgrade axle bolt

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels and tires axle bolt

Step 3. Remove the axle from the bike.

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels and tires upgrade axle removal

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels and tires upgrade axle

Step 4. Remove the brake drum, then take the chain off the rear sprocket and remove the rear wheel from the bike.  

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels and tires upgrade brake drum

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels and tires upgrade brake drum removal

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels and tires upgrade sprocket removal

Step 5. Let some air out of the tire tube, then use a bead breaker and lever tool to break the bead and loosen up the tire. Next, use tire irons to remove the tube and the tire from the rear wheel. 

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels and tires upgrade tube

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels and tires upgrade tire removal

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels and tires upgrade tube removal

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels upgrade tire removal

PRO TIP: If the tire is stuck or difficult to remove, spray some tire mount lube on the wheel to help get it loose. 

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels upgrade tire mount lube

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels upgrade tire removed

Step 6. Use a spoke wrench to remove the old spokes from the wheel hub, then clean the wheel hub.

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels and tires upgrade spokes removal

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels upgrade spokes removal

2006 Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels and tires upgrade spokes removal

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels and tires upgrade clean hub

Step 7. Use a wheel bearing remover set to remove the wheel bearings. Select the correct size collet and drift from the set, then place the hub on a hard surface and hit the drift dead center with a hammer to knock the bearing from each side out of the hub. 

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels and tires upgrade bearing removal

2006 Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels and tires upgrade bearing removal

2006 Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels upgrade bearing removal

Step 8. Add some performance grease to the new wheel bearings (ball bearing and 601A ball bearing), then use a bearing driver tool to press the bearings into each side of the wheel hub until they bottom out. 

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels upgrade grease bearing

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels upgrade bearing driver

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels upgrade bearing installation

NOTE: Do a quick test fit with the axle to make sure that the spacer on the inside is lined up correctly. 

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels and tires upgrade bearing installation

Step 9. Lace up the wheel hub with a new rear spokes set. Start with the outer spokes on one side, then install the inner spokes. Feed the spokes through  the new rear rim one at a time, starting with the outer spokes first, then go to the inner. Next, flip it over and do the inner and outer spokes. 

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels and tires upgrade lace wheel

2006 Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels and tires upgrade lace wheel

2006 Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels and tires upgrade spokes installation

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels and tires upgrade spokes installation

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels and tires upgrade rim spokes installation

Watch the video below for a full tutorial on how to lace a dirt bike wheel. 

Step 10. Place the wheel on a truing and balancing stand and use a screwdriver to seat the spokes.  

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels and tires upgrade truing stand

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels and tires upgrade truing

Step 11. Use the truing stand to check for wheel hop (side-to-side and up-and-down movement where the wheel could lose contact with the ground). Find the low point on the wheel and mark it. 

2006 Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels and tires upgrade truing

2006 Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels upgrade truing

Step 12. Tighten four spokes in each direction a quarter of a turn, and continue spinning the wheel on the stand and tightening the spokes until the low point of the wheel aligns with the needle at the bottom of the truing stand. 

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels upgrade truing

NOTE: If the spokes start getting too tight as you’re doing this, you may need to go on the other side and loosen up just a bit. Do the quarter turns in small increments, otherwise you might be putting too much tension on one or more spokes and you’ll  have to start over again. 

2006 Kawasaki KLX 110 dirt bike wheels and tires upgrade truing

Step 13. Use a spokes torque wrench to torque the spokes down to 35 inch-pounds in three passes, using the opening for the valve stem as a start and stop point. Tighten one spoke, then skip two and go to the third on the first pass. Then on the next pass, move to the next spoke, then skip two and tighten another one. 

2006 Kawasaki dirt bike wheels and tires upgrade truing

Kawasaki dirt bike wheels and tires upgrade truing

Watch the video below for a full tutorial on how to true a dirt bike wheel. 

Step 14. Install a new rim strap around the wheel. 

Kawasaki dirt bike wheels and tires upgrade rim strap

Step 15. Spray tire mount lube onto the rim and new tire to make it easier to mount the tire. 

Kawasaki dirt bike wheels and tires upgrade rim lube

Kawasaki dirt bike wheels upgrade tire and rim prep

Step 16. Use tire irons to work the tire around the rim while installing it. 

2006 Kawasaki KLX 110 dirt bike wheels upgrade new tire installation

Kawasaki KLX 110 dirt bike wheels upgrade new tire installation

Step 17. Install the new tire tube, using the dot mark on the tire to line up the valve stem. Start where the edge of the tube is and work it around the tire. Keep the bead down into the middle part of the rim to where it's got room to pull and then go over the other side. 

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels upgrade new tire installation

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels upgrade new tire tube installation

Kawasaki KLX 110 wheels upgrade tire tube installation

Kawasaki KLX 110 new tire tube installation

PRO TIP: Two regular tire irons should be enough, but having a third super tire iron helps a lot. 

Kawasaki KLX 110 new tire installation

Step 18. Tighten the spokes once the tire tube has been successfully installed, then use a tire gauge to add air to the tube. 

2006 Kawasaki KLX 110 new tire installation

2006 Kawasaki KLX 110 new tire installation air pressure

NOTE: Kawasaki calls for 14 PSI on OEM tires, but for this Dunlop tire we went to 18 PSI.  

Kawasaki KLX 110 new tire installation air pressure

Step 19. Repeat the entire process for the front rim, spokes and tire assembly, then mount the new wheels and the parts removed to get the wheels off the bike and you’re done. 

Kawasaki KLX 110 tires and wheels upgrade front wheel spokes

NOTE: Instead of pulling the spokes by hand like we did for the rear wheel, we cut them off the front wheel to speed up the process. You could do it this way for both wheels, but we pulled the spokes by hand for the rear wheel for illustration purposes. 

Kawasaki KLX 110 tires and wheels upgrade front wheel spokes removal

Kawasaki KLX 110 tires and wheels upgrade front spokes installation

Kawasaki KLX 110 new front rims installation

Kawasaki KLX 110 new front wheels

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