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Old 05-19-2013, 08:39 PM   #1
Burren Rider OP
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KTM 1190 Adventure R: Anatomy of an Off-Road Superbike

KTM 1190 Adventure R: Anatomy of an Off-Road Superbike


There was a time (doesn't seem like that long ago) when 150hp got you a ticket to the Superbikes. I'll admit that when I first heard of KTM's plans to build a genuine adventure bike with those kinds of specs that it seemed absurd.

After owning one for a couple of weeks it still does! Sure is fun though.

So, in the interests of documenting my learning curve on the orange bottle rocket, I am firing up a thread for all the things I learn along the way. As a dirt rider, my interest is in making the best off road explorer I can. Most likely that will mean that much of this bikes potential as a tar burner is wasted on me but I liked the bike so I bought one.

The base bike seems like a pretty comprehensive package, so the plan is to get things sorted without upping the price tag too much. Rather, I am hoping to tidy up a few area's and just ride the thing.

To places like this.





Tyres

An adventure bike with slick tyres just doesn't seem right so the first thing to go were the standard donuts. I looked around at Tubeless options and they are pretty limited in the front at this stage. According to their website, Pirelli make a Tubeless version of the Scorpion Rally but the Australian importer didn't know anything about it when we rang. So a tube went into the front rim (after unbolting the tyre pressure sensor) and a Tube Type Pirelli Scorpion Rally was fitted to give some extra bite. I was really impressed with these tyres on my previous bike and they are DOT approved to keep the constabulary at bay.

The only drawback to going this way is that the Tyre Pressure alarm pops up at me every time I turn the bike on but it disappears with the press of a button.


The rear was easier. A Tubeless Mitas E-09 Dakar was spooned onto the rim ready to go. Rear tyres are likely to have a limited lifespan on the big KTM so I guess if you try one and don't like it, there will be an opportunity for another in a short period of time. I like the Mitas though so I am thinking about buying them in multiples.


Fitting a tube to the rear would be a bit trickier than the front as the valve stem hole is offset but I think it could be done if you needed to go that way. I like the security of carrying spare tubes front and rear in combination with a tubeless repair kit and some patches.

Burren Rider screwed with this post 05-19-2013 at 10:24 PM
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Old 05-19-2013, 08:42 PM   #2
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Bars


The bars' on the 1190 feel a bit narrow for my liking so I picked up a set of Pro Tapers (KX High bend) and bolted them on. These are about 20mm wider and a fair bit higher. For purely off-road use I would be tempted to go higher still but as it is, the riding position feels like a good compromise between sitting and standing. The grip on the clutch side is bonded so if you are going to switch bars a new set of grips will be necessary.

Barkbusters


I had a set of VPS Barkbusters in the shed so they got bolted up using the new BTC-06 clamp system. This is a great setup, fitting a wider range of bars and the offset gives more mounting options and a clearance for cables and brake hoses.


Mirrors


The standard mirrors mount via the brake and clutch perches. That's not unusual but it does make them a little fragile in the case of a decent crash (or even just clipping undergrowth at speed) so I raided my shed supplies again and fitted a set of Ned's Double Take Mirrors. They tuck in nicely and should bend instead of breaking.


Burren Rider screwed with this post 05-19-2013 at 10:26 PM
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Old 05-19-2013, 09:39 PM   #3
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All I get are red x's for your pictures.
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Old 05-20-2013, 12:26 AM   #4
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Old 05-20-2013, 12:50 AM   #5
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Love the photos , very nice.
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Old 05-20-2013, 02:38 AM   #6
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I can see the pics now. Sweet pics!
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Old 05-20-2013, 04:03 AM   #7
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Great pics, but how is it on the dirt?

Compared to a decent 450, how much harder is the R to ride?
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Old 05-20-2013, 05:49 AM   #8
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fuel and weight.

Nice shot in the creek mate! Not a bad looking bike either

I only just learned these have a weight of 230 kilos fully fueled .23 liters of juice. If this is true , then it has more standard fuel capacity and is maybe also lighter than the 990 which weighed in @ 209kgs standard form unfueled (22l fuel). Pretty impressive.
Looking forward to more posts and pics.

Cheers.

Btw i rekon if it rides anything like the 990 then only difference btween it and a 450 is real tight stuff, big logs ,slippery mud hills and stopping. They are amazing handlers, i imagine the 1190R no different, only better in every way.
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Old 05-20-2013, 06:22 AM   #9
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Sick pics and nice info. thanks for sharing.
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Old 05-20-2013, 06:55 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PPiA View Post
Great pics, but how is it on the dirt?

Compared to a decent 450, how much harder is the R to ride?
To be honest, this is a tricky one to answer. I think it largely depends on your riding style and how fast you like to get through the bush.

For a big bike, the weight distribution is incredibly good and the bike feels considerable lighter to ride than the spec sheet would indicate. Once you get past initial perceptions and ride it like a dirt bike, it is surprising where the bike will go.

For dirt roads and gravel tracks, I would take one of these any day of the week. The extra weight settles them and transforms the bike into a stable, almost guided missile. They do take a bit to pull up though and the speed can creep up on you if you aren't mindful of it. Don't know if this equates to being outright faster but it is certainly enjoyable.

Stepping up to flowing forest trails, the big bike is a lot of fun to ride and I have seen numerous instances of mates on 990's flying past enduro bikes as long as things aren't too snotty or loose. Personally, I love riding the big bikes on these sorts of trails but I try to keep things fairly smooth and composed. Given the comparison between the 1190 and my DRZ, I would still be considerably quicker on the DRZ (more room for error) but I wouldn't be surprised to see an 1190 float past me at speed in the right hands.

For soft surfaces (sloppy mud or loose sand) the little bike certainly makes things a whole lot easier. Same goes for snotty single track and the like where the weight, size and slow speed works against you. Plus they don't tend to crash as well as the more dedicated dirt bikes so it becomes an expensive hobby if you want to bash 'n' crash your way through the forest.

Sorry I can't be more definitive but I think it all comes down to rider ability, preference and style. If you are loose on a dirt bike and ride a 230kg / 150hp adventure bike accordingly, it is probably going to hurt you in the long run. Put the right mix of riding in front of an 1190R though and you will struggle to have more fun on two wheels.

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Old 05-20-2013, 07:04 AM   #11
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I see a request from Austria to use your pitchers
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Old 05-20-2013, 07:07 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gimme 2 View Post
Nice shot in the creek mate! Not a bad looking bike either

I only just learned these have a weight of 230 kilos fully fueled .23 liters of juice. If this is true , then it has more standard fuel capacity and is maybe also lighter than the 990 which weighed in @ 209kgs standard form unfueled (22l fuel). Pretty impressive.
Looking forward to more posts and pics.

Cheers.

Btw i rekon if it rides anything like the 990 then only difference btween it and a 450 is real tight stuff, big logs ,slippery mud hills and stopping. They are amazing handlers, i imagine the 1190R no different, only better in every way.
G'Day,

I think they are a bit heavier according to the spec sheet (217kg without fuel) but they certainly feel light whilst riding. It is still only early days for me on the 1190 but I would struggle to draw a comparison with the 990 as I never spent extensive amounts of time on one. I have a few mates who do very impressive things on the 9X0's in the bush though, so I think the 1190 has a lot to live up to in that regard?



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Old 05-20-2013, 07:55 AM   #13
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Little bit of fill flash goes a long way- nicely shot.
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Old 05-20-2013, 01:56 PM   #14
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BR, thanks for the reply.

I took the std 1190 for a test ride, but couldn't see me taking it where I normally ride the Sherco.

The R is looking interesting though. Unfortunately the dealer can't get a demo as most of the R's are already spoken for.
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Old 05-20-2013, 02:20 PM   #15
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Hiya Danny

Top shots as always. Thanks much for starting this thread and posting up piccies of your new toy.

Question for you: My chief concern with KTM having stuffed the RC8 motor into a "dirt" bike is did they get the low end right. Saying it another way, does the bike behave way down low like a 650 single (tractor, pulls from nowhere), or more like a 450 single with less low end but a nice midrange punch (lighter flywheel effect)?

Us neglected 'mericans need to ride the new 1190 vicariously through others until some time this fall, so on/off road riding impressions are quite welcomed.

-SM
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