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Umarth 07-18-2012 01:40 PM

KTM 640 mechanics
 
Hullo,

About to head off on a 2yr RTW and had a brain fart last week and decided to get a completely different bike than planned for the trip: KTM 640 Adventure.

So that leaves me with 2 months to get to know this thing. From a riding perspective, that should be trivial. But from a mechanical perspective, it's a different story all together, hence this post.

What I'm hoping to find is a competent KTM mechanic that would be willing to spend 3-4 days, more if needed and available, to go over my bike and teach me the basics and not so basics of it, like: diagnosing carburator related issues, changing starter clutch, servicing the suspension, etc. as much as can fit in the time he has.

I'm in the Montreal area and anywhere that is within a 4-5 hrs drive is just fine and dandy, but needs to be on week ends.

And it goes without saying, compensation would be part of the deal!
:freaky

Deadly99 07-18-2012 04:46 PM

Who loves working on bikes, helping folks out, knows 640's inside out, is retired and has the time and would probably use the cash for more gas and camp fee's......calling Drift to the courtesy phone....

Drif10 07-18-2012 05:29 PM

If you haven't bought it already, may I suggest a DR650 instead? Simpler machine to maintain.

On a trip right now, home this weekend. Then heading out again in a couple of weeks for 2 or 3 weeks with my kid on a ride. Then home for 5 days and out riding again.

Help you what I can, not the only one around with knowledge within your reach, hopefully they'll chip in as well with their knowledge.

If you haven't rebuilt the water pump yourself, then order the two bearings and seal for the rebuild. Order two sets, so you have a set for the road. Year of 640 makes a diff, mainly on whether the output shaft bearing is the new version or old. You'll need to modify some tools for your toolkit so that you can service the bike easier, allen keys and the like. If it has a cable clutch, replace it with a Magura Jack, and get some spare nipples from a bicycle shop (it's a bike spoke nipple that does the pulling, wears out). Replace the mirrors with folding ones. Real handguards. Line the inside of the bashplate with foam tape, will knock a lot of the noise down. Lube everything. Steel sprockets, no hybrids or aluminum ones. DID X-ring chain. Stock rims are soft, spring for a set from Woody's Wheel Works in Colorado if you can. Replace tubes with good heavy duty ones. Replace all wheel bearings, get all but the one in the sprocket carrier from a bearing store. Get the one in the carrier from KTM (same part, cheaper price, for the others the reverse is true, cheaper at bearing shop). Luggage rack mounting bolt at rear handrail is too small, drill out and tap for M8 bolt (lots of metal there for that, breaks otherwise). LOCTITE EVERYTHING!!!! I do mean EVERYTHING! Cycle Improvements in the GTA can rebuild your suspension to your needs. Or go local: Stadium Suspension on the South Shore does good work too, use them myself. Stock seat is junk, get a Renazco, best you can get.

Or buy a used KLR, throw some luggage and basic maintenance at it, and just go.

Umarth 07-18-2012 08:03 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Drif10 (Post 19161501)
If you haven't bought it already, may I suggest a DR650 instead? Simpler machine to maintain.

On a trip right now, home this weekend. Then heading out again in a couple of weeks for 2 or 3 weeks with my kid on a ride. Then home for 5 days and out riding again.

Help you what I can, not the only one around with knowledge within your reach, hopefully they'll chip in as well with their knowledge.

If you haven't rebuilt the water pump yourself, then order the two bearings and seal for the rebuild. Order two sets, so you have a set for the road. Year of 640 makes a diff, mainly on whether the output shaft bearing is the new version or old. You'll need to modify some tools for your toolkit so that you can service the bike easier, allen keys and the like. If it has a cable clutch, replace it with a Magura Jack, and get some spare nipples from a bicycle shop (it's a bike spoke nipple that does the pulling, wears out). Replace the mirrors with folding ones. Real handguards. Line the inside of the bashplate with foam tape, will knock a lot of the noise down. Lube everything. Steel sprockets, no hybrids or aluminum ones. DID X-ring chain. Stock rims are soft, spring for a set from Woody's Wheel Works in Colorado if you can. Replace tubes with good heavy duty ones. Replace all wheel bearings, get all but the one in the sprocket carrier from a bearing store. Get the one in the carrier from KTM (same part, cheaper price, for the others the reverse is true, cheaper at bearing shop). Luggage rack mounting bolt at rear handrail is too small, drill out and tap for M8 bolt (lots of metal there for that, breaks otherwise). LOCTITE EVERYTHING!!!! I do mean EVERYTHING! Cycle Improvements in the GTA can rebuild your suspension to your needs. Or go local: Stadium Suspension on the South Shore does good work too, use them myself. Stock seat is junk, get a Renazco, best you can get.

Or buy a used KLR, throw some luggage and basic maintenance at it, and just go.

To late, brain fart actually materialized: '06 640 adv sitting in the garage as I type. No turning back now. :rofl

But you did confirm one thing: klr, which was the intial choice, would have been a lot simpler. But I just don't have any joy in driving that thing... And yes, I've tested it left and right.

As for the list of things to do to the bike, yup, your list is a good start! :) A few things extra that i'm planning on doing, but yup. Lot's of work to do on it before I leave.

Was doing the math today and so far, if all goes as planned and we know that never happens, the trip should be arround 100k km. At about 50k I'll I hope to be some where in western europe. the engine at the point would have 80k it. Planning on doing a major over haul of it then or just swapping the thing out for a new engine (if I can get my hands on one of course).

But for the rest, I'll be in 3rd world countries so I really need to know how to service this thing on my own. It's one thing to read about how to do it here, but it's an other to actually do it.

So, Drif, if you have some free time and you offer, I'll sure take any that you can spare! :)

Hockeygod 07-18-2012 08:23 PM

Lurking...
 
:lurk

... to see what I can learn about my 640! Some good stuff so far! ( I really have nothing to add as I am mechanically challenged and have mothballed my bike until my kids get older...)

Drif10 07-19-2012 03:59 AM

An 06 will have a hydraulic clutch and the upgraded output shaft bearing. Stock rims still junk. Same for the seat.

It'll be way to lean stock, but I wouldn't put a pipe or mod the airbox for your ride. Just jet it to match how it should run, and leave it.

A windshield helps. I modded one for a Seca II, many have used one from an F650GS Dakar.

I can help you some. 3 hour ride from mom's place in Lasalle to my place.

juames 10-03-2012 02:09 PM

:lurk

ScramblerTom 10-03-2012 07:16 PM

Umarth,

How tall/heavy are you? According to Drift, my stock 640 seat was made for my ass alone - I sat on the thing for 3000kms down to Pennsylvania and back in 5 days, not as long as your trip obviously but after that many long days it still felt like a plush couch to me.

I would suggest upgrading to a lithium battery - maybe others will disagree but I have a yuasa in the 640 and a lithium in the 400 and the 640 dies pretty quick on cold mornings and the lithium does not. On the 640 forum there are a lot of arguments whether you can get a 640 LC4 started with a dead battery (seems like it should be easy to answer...) but the jury seems to be out and I know when my old battery died, I could not kick start or bump start the thing. It was crank slowly and not catch. So I'm in the camp that you need a good battery under your ass or you are toast. Also, I read of some guy that wired jump terminals out to his side panel just in case. On one cold morning he stopped a passing truck and got a jump start without yanking the seat. I can't see myself ever doing this but it sounded like a smart idea when I read it.

Nothing makes you feel more alone,scared and screwed like a bike that will not start.

Also my screen is perfect for me - my head sits in just the right spot, but drift is something like 5 inches taller than me. I'm 5'10" on a good day.

If you are anywhere near water - seal the little plastic plugs with silicon on the swing arm and pull out the chain tension bolts and clean the threads and goop the hell out of them with anti-seize.

In case you have noticed yet - the vibs go away when you hit dirt, sort of. If not too dusty and in an area I don't think there are too many cops I ride on the shoulders, saves my tires and my ass. this is not a V-strom, it would much rather be on the dirt.

With only one season on this bike I can't say much more than this. Good luck on the trip! post pics of the prep work - we all love that as much as the RR!

theshnizzle 10-07-2012 11:05 AM

I agree with the suggestions posted above about riding a reliable bike for this trip. the much better choice would have been the KLR/ DR/ XRL.... Kinda saves on doing constant roadside maintenance and searching for KTM parts.. you could still pick up a farkled KLR for a song and ride it for a more trouble free trip....wouldn't you rather ride than spend yet another day off the road wrenching/ parts sourcing/ cursing?

Umarth 10-10-2012 01:07 PM

the scary part
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by theshnizzle (Post 19767210)
I agree with the suggestions posted above about riding a reliable bike for this trip. the much better choice would have been the KLR/ DR/ XRL.... Kinda saves on doing constant roadside maintenance and searching for KTM parts.. you could still pick up a farkled KLR for a song and ride it for a more trouble free trip....wouldn't you rather ride than spend yet another day off the road wrenching/ parts sourcing/ cursing?

My first idea was to get a KLR and mod the shit out of it. Even took my best mate's upgraded klr for a 1week 1500km ride to test it out. I liked it but it never managed to put a grin on my face. But I liked it enought to be ready to settle for reliability.

Then I saw the 640 and just fell in love.

Been wrenching on it ever since I got it. Just got back from the 3500km test ride on it.
And the jury is in (for me any way) I love it. I'm consistently getting 550-600km a tank (90kmh, where vibs are low :D)! Handles like dream in dirt (coming from a f800gs).
Issues? Yup, speedometer stopped working in rain, counter sprocket seal bought the farm, the clutch fluid reservoir started leaking a bit. But all that where minor issues that got fixed quite easily last week end.

When I first got the bike I was preaty sure I'dd get a renazco seat. But I've now put arround 7-8k km on it and I dont mind the seat at all. But I still might get one, just for looks. :rofl Most definitely getting woody wheels! Front one is all banged up (by the PO), and well if I change the front, gotta change the rear one too: can't have non-matching wheels!

So far, what's been done to the bike:
- 2 5k km maintenances (oil, valves, etc)
- changes all wheel bearings.
- heated grips
- scotts damper and top triple clamp. (still need to add a good 1 1/2 of risers.)
- straiten out the rear sub frame
- new chain and sprokets
- new counter sproket seal
- new horn (still to weak, still looking...)
- complete rebuild of the carb
- re-built the water pump
- replaced chock cable, throttle cables, clutch cable (preventive)
- padded the skid plate (oh man! what a f**n difference that made!!)
- replaced a few feets worth of electrical wiring here and there.
- added a changing cable from the battery that exits at the steering wheel. (can be used to boost it)
- Added 2 usb power outlets and 1 standard power outlet.

what remains is the scary part. I'm wondering if I should get the valve seats done before I leave? The bike has about 35k km so far. The PO said that the top end of the engine had been completely redone but I'm starting to doubt just how thruthfull the dude was, so I might decide to f it and change the rocker bearings and what not. still pondering that one.

As for the suggestion that xyz bike would be better cause less maintenance... Where would be the adventure in that!! :freaky Plus, I like the idea that about every 3 weeks or so, I'm gonna have to stop for 1-2 days just to systematically go over the bike and do maintenance on it. :D
Break up the pace and give you a reason to dally and talk to people.

Only thing that sucks is that I hurt my hand recently and doc says: no riding for you for at least 3 months! Which means I have to push back my departure to early spring instead of in 3weeks. :( Gives me more time to setup the bike I guess.:becca)

Umarth 10-10-2012 01:22 PM

ScramblerTom,

I'm 6'1 and 175, so I'm on the light side. probably just who this bike was engineered for (well, in my world any way! lol). My ass is quite comfy on the stock seat. It helps a lot that the seat does not have a "pan" area so you can move around quite a bit.

I'm not sure about the lithium battery. Have been reading goods and bads about it. I'm thinking of just changing the battery (normal acid type) when ever it starts to feel like it's not holding it charge. But you remind me that I want to put a good voltage reader on the bike... Adding that to the list of to-do's. As for kick-starting the bike on a dead battery: forget it, the CDI needs proper voltage to fire so no battery, no go.

For me, I've noticed that the wind hits me a bit to squarely. I'm thinking of putting small wind-deflectors on the upper sides of the stock windscreen, where it narrows. So as to block the window horizontally a bit more. Vertically it's where I'm use to having it hit me, about middle of the neck.

For the swing arm, I actually drained it the first time I changed the rear tire. I then drilled a 1/8" hole underneath the swing-arm, just about where the chain tensioner screw is, so that any more water that get's in will also have an exit route. Add to that generous anti-seize and periodic check. ;)

gunnerbuck 10-10-2012 05:39 PM

For going RTW I would recommend having valve seats reground if they have not already been done... You will need to order 4 new stem seals to take into the shop with your cylinder head.... Usually a 4 valve seat regrind amounts to about $100 if all the valve/guide parts are good and can be reused...

This will give you a fresh start so you should be good for 50,000 KM of travel which would take your odo up to 85,000 KM... At 85,000 you could have the valves done again and replace the piston rings as they will likely have a larger than spec ring end gap by then... Also while you have it apart rebuild the water pump and replace the cam follower rollers...

Of course as with any long distance bikes you'll go through a lot of normal wear items which one often overlooks... One item would be your chain rub block which usually needs replacement after about 20-30 K KM, for this instead of buying a replacement I just prep the surface and bond a new nylon rub strip to the top of the existing block with Aquaseal... With your the long travel suspension the cable cable guides and cable rub points should be checked from time to time... Lengths of slit fuel hose can be slid over any rub sections on the cables to prolong life... The protector tube on the rear brake hose can bit trimmed and slid back in the clamps when wear becomes apparent... The cable guides also wear out and replacements can be made up out of stiff wire {coathanger} with a bit of fancy bending and tweaking} Another wear item is the electrical so you should do a nose to tail trace of all the wiring from time to time and repair the worn shielding with tape and goop, pay particular attention to the wires tied to the fairing support bracket, the wires to the CDI and the wires to the starter relay ...
Some of the carb parts will also wear and should be replaced periodically like the jet needle/needle jet, slide/slide guide and the float needle... Carry a spare clutch master rebuild kit and half a dozen countershaft bushing O-rings which also perform in a rebuild of the clutch slave

Make sure you have fresh wheel bearings and carry with you 1 spare front and 1 spare rear bearing + a hammer/drift as usually it is only one bearing that goes south... The cush bearing on these bikes is tough and will last a long time... Drif mentioned to carry a spare intake follower roller and water pump rebuild kit which is a good idea...

I change oil on my 640s every 5000- 6000 KM , at 1 change I'll replace only the spin on filter and at the next only the paper element so in theory you get 10,000 + KM out of each filter... Some people carry the washable elements but I would think you could find replacement Hi Flo filters at many places... Carry at least one spare air filter as well {2 is even better}, I put mine in a zip lock bag and flatten the air out so they take up little room...

My first battery gave me almost 7 years and my second is showing signs after a little over 2 years so I ordered one of those mixed reviews Shorai batteries off Ebay {$140} to try... Practice starting your bike with the kickstart so you get used to using this backup system for anytime your E-start quits or battery is flat... On my 2 640s I have a key position where the bike will start without the headlights on, look for this on yours just before the key is turned to the steering lock position...

I had a little giggle when I read shnizzles post, here is someone who says to buy something reliable like a KLR while she travels on a Hayabusa... That big Suzuki is not my idea of a reliable travel bike, but for her it is the bike of choice and she lives with it... Each persons idea of Adventure travel is different, for shnizzle groomed roads and pavement may be all it takes so for her the Hayabusa fills that role...

My idea of adventure is paved roads, rough roads, trails, narrow trails, cross country, loaded travel, loaded 2 up travel and a bit of single track from time to time... For all of this the 640 is the bike that works...

For me the 640 A is a very reliable bike and still the #1 Adventure bike out there...It has served me well for nearly 10yrs and over 150,000KM... The 640A has been obsolete for 5 yrs and still nothing better has come down the pike so I purchased a second 640... Of course with a bike no longer being made your only option is to find one used and take your chances that the PO treated the bike well and you did not buy into some issues... The second bike I bought was a little beat up so I did up this thread on restoration which may prove helpful: http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=732362

And this thread is on rebuilding the 640 engine:http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=632893

fasteddy 10-14-2012 05:20 PM

+1

Quote:

Originally Posted by gunnerbuck (Post 19791348)
for going rtw i would recommend having valve seats reground if they have not already been done... You will need to order 4 new stem seals to take into the shop with your cylinder head.... Usually a 4 valve seat regrind amounts to about $100 if all the valve/guide parts are good and can be reused...

This will give you a fresh start so you should be good for 50,000 km of travel which would take your odo up to 85,000 km... At 85,000 you could have the valves done again and replace the piston rings as they will likely have a larger than spec ring end gap by then... Also while you have it apart rebuild the water pump and replace the cam follower rollers...

Of course as with any long distance bikes you'll go through a lot of normal wear items which one often overlooks... One item would be your chain rub block which usually needs replacement after about 20-30 k km, for this instead of buying a replacement i just prep the surface and bond a new nylon rub strip to the top of the existing block with aquaseal... With your the long travel suspension the cable cable guides and cable rub points should be checked from time to time... Lengths of slit fuel hose can be slid over any rub sections on the cables to prolong life... The protector tube on the rear brake hose can bit trimmed and slid back in the clamps when wear becomes apparent... The cable guides also wear out and replacements can be made up out of stiff wire {coathanger} with a bit of fancy bending and tweaking} another wear item is the electrical so you should do a nose to tail trace of all the wiring from time to time and repair the worn shielding with tape and goop, pay particular attention to the wires tied to the fairing support bracket, the wires to the cdi and the wires to the starter relay ...
Some of the carb parts will also wear and should be replaced periodically like the jet needle/needle jet, slide/slide guide and the float needle... Carry a spare clutch master rebuild kit and half a dozen countershaft bushing o-rings which also perform in a rebuild of the clutch slave

make sure you have fresh wheel bearings and carry with you 1 spare front and 1 spare rear bearing + a hammer/drift as usually it is only one bearing that goes south... The cush bearing on these bikes is tough and will last a long time... Drif mentioned to carry a spare intake follower roller and water pump rebuild kit which is a good idea...

I change oil on my 640s every 5000- 6000 km , at 1 change i'll replace only the spin on filter and at the next only the paper element so in theory you get 10,000 + km out of each filter... Some people carry the washable elements but i would think you could find replacement hi flo filters at many places... Carry at least one spare air filter as well {2 is even better}, i put mine in a zip lock bag and flatten the air out so they take up little room...

My first battery gave me almost 7 years and my second is showing signs after a little over 2 years so i ordered one of those mixed reviews shorai batteries off ebay {$140} to try... Practice starting your bike with the kickstart so you get used to using this backup system for anytime your e-start quits or battery is flat... On my 2 640s i have a key position where the bike will start without the headlights on, look for this on yours just before the key is turned to the steering lock position...

I had a little giggle when i read shnizzles post, here is someone who says to buy something reliable like a klr while she travels on a hayabusa... That big suzuki is not my idea of a reliable travel bike, but for her it is the bike of choice and she lives with it... Each persons idea of adventure travel is different, for shnizzle groomed roads and pavement may be all it takes so for her the hayabusa fills that role...

My idea of adventure is paved roads, rough roads, trails, narrow trails, cross country, loaded travel, loaded 2 up travel and a bit of single track from time to time... For all of this the 640 is the bike that works...

For me the 640 a is a very reliable bike and still the #1 adventure bike out there...it has served me well for nearly 10yrs and over 150,000km... The 640a has been obsolete for 5 yrs and still nothing better has come down the pike so i purchased a second 640... Of course with a bike no longer being made your only option is to find one used and take your chances that the po treated the bike well and you did not buy into some issues... The second bike i bought was a little beat up so i did up this thread on restoration which may prove helpful: http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=732362

and this thread is on rebuilding the 640 engine:http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=632893


Rockwell 11-01-2012 08:26 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Umarth (Post 19159880)
Hullo,
About to head off on a 2yr RTW...

Good luck on your trip. We set out on a RTW on our 990 Adventure last year until we got into an accident in El Salvador. See link in my signature for our blog (we're way behind in our posts).

juames 11-03-2012 08:21 PM

:lurk


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