2012 ktm 500 exc?

Discussion in 'Thumpers' started by Visigothic, Apr 27, 2011.

  1. ABYSS

    ABYSS KTM

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    Why yes I do, I own one I got mine in December and they were very hard to get a hold of at the time. I took mine to the gas station after I mounted the pump and fuel spigot off the bike and was able to put 3.52 gallons in it from a new bone dry state.

    Acerbis is econsidering making a 4 gallon tank and some of us have called them to reaffirm interest.







  2. Lulu7404

    Lulu7404 Been here awhile

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    Just north of Big D
    If this is still an open invitation, I would love to have some people to start riding with. Have not been on the dirt in about 20 years. Brought the 500EXC home yesterday and still need to upgrade my street gear to offroad gear, but that shouldn't take too long. Please let me know when you guys head out again, no matter where.

    Brad
  3. EVELKNIEVEL

    EVELKNIEVEL Adventurer

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    COUCH IN SUNNY AND HOT FLORIDA
  4. CBAT

    CBAT occasional wanderer

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    Thanks for taking the time to write all that up. I guess I will just have to wait till the DRZ burns out and make a decision. It may be a while, it only has 27,000 miles on it. :D
  5. RichardU

    RichardU Let's Ride

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    2on2off,

    Thanks for the insight. I have about 25,000 miles on my DRZ. Given the schedule for the 500, at an average of 40 mph that would have been 4 new pistons. Ouch.

    I guess what I want is the power/weight of the 500 with the low maintenance and reliability of the DRZ. I suppose I also want politicians who tell the truth, and the ability to lose weight while ignoring diet and exercise.
  6. spagthorpe

    spagthorpe Long timer

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    I would think a con of the DRZ would be the five speed gearbox. It's hard to get the gearing right for all around dual sport use, at least if you need to ride the freeway to get anywhere.


    Thanks for the comparison though. Good info. I had no idea the piston interval for the 500 was 150 hours. Ouch. Is that the racing spec interval, or for general use?
  7. AussieClay

    AussieClay Adventurer

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    Overhauled the Scotts steering damper I had from my last bike and installed a new mounting kit for the 500 EXC.
    I received the JD tuning module in the mail a couple of days ago. Just need to find the time to install and take it for a test ride.... will let you know the results.:clap

    I spent a lot of time talking with James from JD and he was very helpful and knowledgable. Great customer service.
  8. Zuber

    Zuber Zoob

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    Quote:
    NOTE:
    The 2012 XC-W and EXC models MUST have the ECU unlocked by your KTM dealer before the mapping switch will work
    is unlocking easy for ktm dealers? of course the plug is for off road use only
    you can stwitch them out mild and wild


    According to KTM, it is impossible to unlock an XCW or an EXC. The lock is a simple switch in the SX and XCF to prevent accidental mods to the map. The option is not even available on the XCW/EXC. It would be difficult to get around this, currently. I expect the aftermarket to come up with an open source tuner (like TuneECU) and just do an end-run. Currently, the other option is to some how get an SX/XCF ECU on your bike, for off-road use only of course.
  9. ABYSS

    ABYSS KTM

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    The 2012 manuals are out and available. I got mine. Saturday..

    KTM. Is no longer putting them in plain PDF format. It is now in a propriety PDF reader. The pdf is encapsulated within an .exe file making it hard get on your IPAD type device.. But not impossible :evil
  10. ADVJake

    ADVJake ***** dweller

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    It isnt that simple. The maintenance schedule is designed for casual trail riders who while aren't racers, arent exactly plodding along with the motor either. It includes alot of movement through the power range and works the oil and components hard.
    Now, ride the 500exc like a DRZ400 and it would last just as long IMO. 25,000 miles on the original piston, just casually riding the highways and trails? Easily. People have done it on the RFS motor many times.
    The thing is these KTMs make you want to ride them hard, and with that comes more wear on the motor from higher revs.

    My opinion, and it makes sense with lots of vehicles that last a very long time when they rarely get revved out. The more horsepower released to the wheel over the life of the engine, the earlier it will require replacement piston/valves etc. Simple as that IMO!
  11. header

    header Chris

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    This, to me, seems to be the sister thought to using liters/gallons as a measuring stick for doing maintenance instead of the hours or miles that could be less accurate. It just makes sense.
  12. SteveO

    SteveO ouch....

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    Where can we get these, beside the lame local dealership...
  13. SteveO

    SteveO ouch....

    Joined:
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    So, I've been working on my 500 EXC for some time now, getting it ready for a ride with my brother in Yuma. The Ride was successful in that we didn't have any mechanical failures. However, we did run out of time and had to cut out 137 miles....bummer. Next time we are going to run the route in reverse to see some of the other parts of the Yuma area. If you are interested in downloading the GPS files, you can get the route from DualSportMaps.com, link -> http://dualsportmaps.com/?link=102719

    I have put together a Ride report here on ADV, if you care to see some of the sites.....:
    http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=767594



    Now, on to the Modifications that I have put on the 2012 500 EXC for this trip and any upcoming trips.....




    GPS

    After a stint with the KOTW, I decided that my Garmin Oregon GPS was not going to cut it for fast motorcycle riding. So, after looking around I came across at Garmin 276C. These are pretty much bomb-proof units that are waterproof, and they have a screen that unlike the newer touch-screen models. I appreciate this because when you are zipping along the trail, the sand and dust will inevitably cover the screen. When I had the Oregon, the dust would quickly cover the screen, which made viewing the tracks difficult. When I cleaned the screen with my glove, the touch-screen would respond with an attempt to either unlock the screen or change the screen setting. This is an unwelcome action when you are moving along a trail trying to follow your GPS tracks. Being that the 276C does not have a touch-screen, cleaning the screen of dust is not a problem at all.

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    Mounting the GPS was somewhat of an issue for the 500 EXC, due to the bike being so new. After-market manufactures appear to have not had an opportunity to build anything for the 2012 500 EXC bike. So, I had to build my own GPS mount. I'm using the Tourtech mounting bracket for the 276c, and then I've built my own mount for this unit......I visited Lowes and picked up some 1/2" OD steel tubing. Using a table mounted vise, I was able to bend the tubing to my specs, and pound the ends flat for a secure mounting points. I used some old windshield mounts to hold the end of the primary tube, and then created a couple of small mounts for the lower section to hold the primary tube in place.
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    In the event that I would have to remove the steering head, or any disconnect the wiring harness from the battery, I put in a waterproof 3 pin plug. This makes the disconnect much easier....


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    Fuse Block

    To power accessories in a safe maner, it's a good idea to have a fuse block for your accessories. I have a PowerLet FuseBlock that is Zip-tied to the top-side of the Air-Filter clamp. So far, this has been working very well. My current powered accessories are:

    Hardwired GPS power
    PowerLet plug in the HDB Top Clamp for my Cell Phone
    SAE Plug, sitting in the AIR Filter compartment, for either charging the battery or heated gear
    and coming soon, a 12V standard cigarette lighter plug for standard accessories such as Ipod charging.


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    TrailTech Headlight

    We all know the stock headlights on the KTM bikes are little more than a joke. The one time I relied on the stock headlight I was sorely disappointed by the light, rather lack of light, put out by this joke of a headlight. I had to follow my brother in the dark and use his headlight to see in the dark as we worked our way out of the desert. Since then, I have upgraded to a Trail Tech Torch Halogen Off-Road headlight. While not the brightest on the market, this headlight is significantly better than the stock. On this latest trip of Yuma to Parker, we ended up getting to our camp spot after dark, and I must say, the Trail Tech headlight was a welcome sight.

    When I was mounting the headlight, I ran into some issues in that the back of the headlight was quite a bit deeper than the stock headlight, and thus prevented the headlight from securing to the front forks. I created a couple of head-light extensions that allowed the headlight mount to be moved out nearly two inches. Of course, this means the bottom bracket for the headlight needs to be adjusted so that the headlight will throw a beam down the road, and not into the air. So, I used the Trail Tech headlight mount to mount to the fender. Through the up-and downs of the trail I have not had any issues with the headlight moving around or coming off the bottom mounts.

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    I believe that Paul is working on some really nice headlight extensions. He may have these available in the future. My extensions are cheap plastic..... but, they work very well.





    Here you can see how the Trail Tech headlight is deeper than the stock headlight, and will interfere wit the wiring harness behind the headlight

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    It should be noted that I had to run the cable in front of the headlight due to the HDB Vapor w/dash. This allows the cable to move freely up and down with out restrictions. In this current position, the front fork is fully extended, thus pulling the cable all the way down. Under normal conditions, the cable is not in front of the headlight.

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    TrailTech Striker Computer

    The KTM 500 EXC has a new computer that does a pretty good job of keeping track of the vitals, including a FI light that will light up if there is a problem with the engine or Fuel Injection. I wanted to have a little more info on my dash, so I ordered a Trail Tech Striker computer, model# 712-102. I've found that the bare aluminum can cast quite a reflection in the hot sun, so the stealth (black) is a better option for me. I requested that the mileage and hours be set by Trail Tech before it was sent out to me. I then received an email stating that I would be able to perform this action, using their provided instructions. When I got around to installing the computer I was surprised to find that they in fact did set the mileage and hours per my previous request.....very nice of them. After setting up the computer for the correct tire size, and checked the mileage distance against my GPS, and then against my car; it's spot on. Trail Tech also provides a "dash" For the lights, which I was able to pick up via MotorCycle Superstore for a decent price.

    Something to note: The FI light has a very small computer chip that is part of the light. Fortunately, this entire chip and be fitted into the existing Trail Tech light housing with no issues.

    Due to the stock A/C voltage system, you will need to use the Trail Tech provided "bulbs", instead of LEDs for the dash indicator lights. Unless you have a converted D/C system, the LED lights will not work. Regardless, everything is working quite nice.

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    Highway Dirt Bike (HDB) parts

    Paul at HighwayDirtBike has been producing high-quality products for dirt bikes for some time now. I picked up the following parts from Paul:

    Top Clamp, Anodized
    Billet Handguards
    Mirrors
    Bottom Clamp setup for Scott Steering Damper
    Vapor w/Dash Billet protector, Anodized
    Key Switch mount w/iPod remote pad

    I must say, Paul's parts are Bomb-Proof! Plus, he is a great guy to work with. These parts speak for themselves: high-quality, bomb-proof and plenty of options.....

    When getting the HDB setup, I would highly recommend you also get the slimmer combination switch. This makes it possible to have room for the HDB setup. Here you can see how the aftermarket combination switch is slimmer than the stock setup
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    To eliminate any rattling of the mirrors some sticky sided foam works really well:

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    Exhaust Head Shield

    Before I acquired a Tail-rack from Globetrottin, I made a heat-shield from an old license plate and a bracket. I have a Giant-Loop Mojavi bag that is ideal for the quick jaunts; smaller than the Coyote bag, but allows for 1.5L bottles of fuel or water. To keep this bag from melting on the extremely hot exhaust, I made up a heat shield to protect the bag. So far, its been working very well....

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    Flatland Racing Skidplate

    This Skid plate has more than paid for itself. just take a look at the beating this thing has been taking......think you might need one?

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    I found out after I installed the FlatLand Racing skid plate that when one is checking valves, the skid plate interferes with the ability to lock the valves into place, using the Lock-Bolt and the Fly-wheel notch. If you look closely at the skid plate, you can see how I drilled out a hole to allow Lock-Bolt to come all the way out, thus allowing the copper spacer to be removed from the bolt, and then the Lock-Bolt can be put back into place, thus locking the Fly wheel into the Top-Dead-Center position.

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    GlobeTrottin Top Rack

    GlobeTrottin makes an excellent Top (Tail) Rack for the 500 EXC. I recently loaded up this rack with LOTS of gear, in an attempt to really test it out. This rack did, VERY well under the load, and repeated crashes.......
    My brother followed me for several miles and commented that the gear that was tied to the rack didn't move an inch, despite the bouncing around and crashes.....

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    Fuel Filter
    I recently took my bike in to have the 10-micron Fuel Filter replaced with the 20-micron Fuel Filter. Here is a close up picture of the 10-micron Fuel Filter. The dealer replaced the Fuel Filter and installed a removable clamp on the hose. They also provided me with a couple of spare 20-micron Fuel Filters....great guys.

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    I believe somebody asked about the part number for the 20micron fuel filter.
    Here is where the fuel filter is found, right next to the throttle body
    The actual Fuel Filter Kit is part# 78141013044, but it appears you can not get this part from CheapCycleParts......It's listed as "not-available". I assume because all of these parts are going to the dealers......I do know that if you take you bike to a dealer, they can look up the VIN number and determine if your bike has been serviced. If not, its all of 10 minutes to replace this Filter....




    Handlebar Control switch

    If there is one upgrade that gives you a better handle on your bike, this is it. Their appears to be several different companies that offer the same type of Handlebar switch. I got this installed with no drama, and besides the expectation of it working great, the thin switch allows me to get a better grip on the clutch lever.....

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    Scoche RF iPod controller

    This thing is GREAT. I enjoy listening to some great tunes when on the trail, and having the ability to stop/start my tunes WITHOUT digging into my gear is awesome:


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    Future mods:

    Larger gas tank from Acerbis
    Low-profile "comfortable" seat
    Scott steering damper
  14. dieselcruiserhead

    dieselcruiserhead Long timer

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    Interesting as the 500 really could go both ways, dirtbike or ADV it appears. I have a pretty smooth/fully built old '02 520 (510cc, as comfortable as possible) but I hardly consider it a "motorcycle" as its not comfortable for longer trips. Would you say the 500 is different than that? Key with loading the 520 is as minimum stuff as possible. I have a Baja Designs light on mine (came with it, hard to discard it) but I almost consider it to be too much weight up front...
  15. SteveO

    SteveO ouch....

    Joined:
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    I don't know if this 500EXC is that much different than a '02 520.......this is my first KTM bike, and my last KTM bike. I did a whole lot of research on Dual-sport bikes before purchasing this one. My last Dual-sport bike was a 2010 Yamaha WR250R. While this bike was nice, it just didn't have the power. This KTM has the power and is lighter.....I like. :evil As for highway droning, no, it's just not there....Well, at least without some kind of windshield it's not there. Maybe with some kind of windshield it would be acceptable. It certainly has the legs for it.....

    The seat is definitely a motocross type seat, not comfortable. I purchased a SheepSkin cover from AlaskaLeather, in hopes that my rear would be a little more comfortable. Yes.....it was "a little" more comfortable, but definitely not all day comfort. A better seat is needed.

    The switch I have mounted in the HDB Top Clamp is a DPDT (Dual Pole Dual Throw) ON-OFF-ON switch. Currently I have the switched integrated into the starting system so that if the switch is not in the correct position, the bike will not start......sorta of a little insurance so the bike can't be hot-wired in the parking lot at 1AM. This same switch will be used for auxiliary LED lighting when some funds become available. Of course, I will also have to change the system to DC, but that is a given soon enough.....
  16. 2on2off

    2on2off Head'n somewhere new

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    The KTM 500EXC is one of the few bikes that could replace the 250exc and the DRZ. All three, (DRZ - 250exc - 500EXC) are great bikes so it really comes down to individual preference.

    You might be thrilled to replace the DRZ and 250exc with a single 500EXC but then again, you might be disappointed. If I had been riding with you for two or more years, I could give you my opinion but it would still come down to your own preference.

    So many great bikes to choose from these days. These are the "good" kind of problems to solve.
  17. 2on2off

    2on2off Head'n somewhere new

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    Thanks for providing the facts about the KTM 3.5 Gallon Fuel Tank. I have a few more questions:
    1. Will the KTM radiator guards work with this gas tank?
    2. Did you have to remove the charcoal cannister and other smog stuff for it to fit?
    3. Does the stock KTM radiator fan work with this gas tank?
    4. Any other mounting issues to be aware of?

    Thanks.
  18. 2on2off

    2on2off Head'n somewhere new

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    You are right about the 5 speed but I have found it very good with stock gearing for all the places I ride including some technical single track. As good as the DRZ 5 speed is, the KTM 6 speed tranny is better. Sixth gear is great for motoring down the pavement.

    I have another thread on advrider regarding high mileage KTM 520, 525 and 530 EXC's. The response is very good overall and many owners have over 400 hours on the original piston and rings.

    I asked my local KTM mechanic about this and he thinks you are "rolling the dice" if you run your motor over 200 hours without replacing the piston and rings.

    I'd like to hear from 400 plus hour owners who have experienced their motors coming apart because they didn't change the piston and rings sooner. So far, no one has spoken up that I know of.

    So..........it may be OK to run the 500EXC up to 400 hours without opening up the engine if you don't race it and just dual sport it or trail ride it.
  19. jesusgatos

    jesusgatos fishing with dynamite

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    on the road
    Might want to try something like this?

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  20. SteveO

    SteveO ouch....

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    ooouuuu......nice.

    $135.....ummmm, I don't know. :huh

    My setup cost $10...... :D