KTM 525 EXC as an Adventure Bike

Discussion in 'Thumpers' started by Karnage, Jan 31, 2007.

  1. Stu

    Stu Buffo Maximus

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    Leesbian, you are ahead of me on this one. I am planning long distance travel on my new 525 EXC and feel that it will do just fine. My local dealer (Letko) says there is a guy in Colorado running rental units (450 & 525 he thinks, but mainly 450s) and some have 30,000 miles on them. ADVRider had a report last year of two guys that took off from Tulsa, OK riding back roads and trails all the way to the Pacific ocean in Oregon--over 3,000 miles (about 20 miles of hard surface), in a couple of weeks. They rode without difficulty on used 525s. They fixed flats, basically. They rode nearly stock bikes and had little mechanical expertise. (I remember them mentioning that they did get an oil change once.) When they arrived they decided to take the wheels off the bikes and stuff them in the back of a small rental van and drive home. Try that with a DS!

    Stu
    #61
  2. The Cheat

    The Cheat Tard

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    #62
  3. leesbian

    leesbian Been here awhile

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    I'll get new front and rear sprockets and chain before I go... but I also plan on getting a different cam on the throttle adjuster (its a little bit all or nothing at the moment) - I guess with finer control over the throttle, my fuel consumption will be much better :)

    AFAIK, the MXC already has a fan... I'll take a look tomorrow.

    Noted. Thanks. Can anyone recommend a suitable steering damper? I guess a WP one, cos all the other suspension is WP... model?

    The XR400 was recommended to me by somebody that has done RTW twice on a DR350, so I trust that he knows what he's talking about. The 525 only came into it because I already have one.

    What modifications are you making? where are you going, and when?
    #63
  4. vuugti

    vuugti Pretty much...

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    The Scotts/Ohlins steering dampner is a good one (I have one) or the GPR V2 each with a sub mount.

    The 6.6 gal Acerbis tank...cheap at $250 US. Change the gearing and add the cush drive rear wheel, ala 640 adv. $650 US.

    Some type of radiator protection.

    The Wolfman luggage is better than the rack and a hell of alot cheaper. I used the small explorer. $150 US

    Windscreen......yes a must for that distance......Make it the rally fairing.:evil

    GPS....hardwired just to be safe. eBay $150 US.

    Buy tires along the way. Tire balls maybe an option instead of numerous tubes and crap.

    Thinking out loud here.......Hell if I could take 6 mo off I'd be with you on mine. Remember people always pack shit they don't need or ever use.:wink:

    Wish Jim would chime in......:ear
    #64
  5. leesbian

    leesbian Been here awhile

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    I'm displaying my mechanical ignorance here... wtf is a cush drive? If I'm gonna need a replacement, is a Talon a good choice? lighter, stronger rim, replaceable spokes etc...?

    I was under the impression that the wolfman luggage would go ontop of the rack? the rack ensures that the weight goes to the frame, and not your rear fender, right?

    Already have a GPS, just need to get a TT mounting for it

    I already thought of tireballs ;) I was gonna take the kit with me and change to the tireballs once the good roads ran out - I read that they're not happy above about 50mph... besides, by then I'll probably be ready to stick some more knobbly tyres on too.

    LOL, If you wanna come, you got plenty of time to prepare for 6 months off - my RTW trip probably wont start till around April next year ;)
    #65
  6. HighwayChile

    HighwayChile greetings from Wa state

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    the sub frame is a weak link on this bike. look into having one fab'ed. build pannier mounts as well, wether you use hard or soft bags. is there another way of adding oil capacity ? ala what other bikes use? ( xr crf style ) that wouldnt run as much?

    the xr400 would be an idea RTW mount. as is a DR350. both tough as shit. simple, lots of parts, cheap, fast enough. as you are aware not a good idea pulling race speeds in a 3 rd world country. as you and another mentioned many over pack, so they need a land barge. that would kill alot of fun.:1drink

    have you checked out horizonsunlimited.com ?

    hhhmm, find a fab shop in poland, ( lower costs there right?) make up several sub frames that can handle more weight, sell 'em here, pay for your ale on the trip. :1drink

    I'd need a friggin seat remake first, you're tougher then me if you can handle that stock wood plank.
    #66
  7. flux_capacitor

    flux_capacitor I know a shortcut!

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    I have a Wolfman Mini Beta rear bag I have been using without a rack with zero issues. I think I posted pics of it already but if I didn't I will be glad to do so, just let me know. I also have the Wolfman Enduro tank bag...I never take it off. The Mini Beta hold my sleeping bag, one man tent, 3 changes of clothes, pillow, toiletries, cooking stuff, all with no problem. I ran into a guy on ktmtalk who fabbed me a bracket which mounts in the 2 holes that hold the exhaust onto the bike. This bracket keeps my bag and plastic off the pipe very well and only cost me a little money.

    I have a Renazco seat being worked on this weekend so when it arrives I will post some pictures up for you. My bony butt could not last 15 minutes on the stocker.

    A cush hub is a rubber dampenned wheel which would ease the stress on the drivetrain. Do a quick search, there is plenty of info on it. LC4 rear wheels are cush hub equipped and would fit, but are hard to find used at a decent price. Contact cmwoody with Woody's Wheel Works...he will make you one up. Also, I believe he was working on a billet cush hub for these bikes..not sure if that ever came to fruition or not.

    Go with the Scotts damper as all the research I have been doing lately says it is the better one (I have no firsthand experience with this) as it has a high speed AND a low speed adjuster. As I understand it, Scotts owns the patent on this and all other dampers have only one setting.

    Also, you are talking about wiring GPS into the bike...not sure of your other electrical plans but the stock stator cannot handle many additional items. To give you an idea: I have a Baja Designs kit installed, and I want heated grips and an 80/80 watt bulb. I am told I need at least a stator rewind. I am currently trying to determine exactly what needs to be done to get more power...I cannot seem to find a good straight answer on this. I am planning on calling Trail Tech Monday am to see what the experts have to say on the subject.

    Oh yeah, I should mention that my oil cooler has been SOLD. Thanks!
    #67
  8. The Cheat

    The Cheat Tard

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    Flux why did you decide to sell the oil cooler? Did you find a better one? Or did you decide your oil was cool enough? Maybe you are going to use the Joe Racer Oil Cooler?...........................Come man.......tell us....
    #68
  9. The Cheat

    The Cheat Tard

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    Think you could post a pic of the bracket that you bought to support your bag?
    #69
  10. flux_capacitor

    flux_capacitor I know a shortcut!

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    To be 100% honest with you...I was talking to my dealer, who I trust completely, about oil coolers. He is of the opinion that here on the East coast they are not needed. If you are on the West coast, or riding alot of sand where your throttle is pinned all day, then if would be an important addition. Also, my pavement is limited since I live 5 minutes from the National Forest. I have noticed that my bike burns a little oil on extended pavement runs, so if I had that to contend with I would have kept the cooler. I am NOT saying they are not worthwhile, but for me and my riding style I think that it is not worth the $400 price tag. For a lot of people, this is a worthwhile addition, just not for me. This is just my opinion (and his) and I have no facts to support this other than it makes logical sense to me. I change my oil every 500 miles, and am just about to do the 2nd valve adjustment...2500 miles on the bike in 6 months and no complaints. People make these bikes to be so much more destructible than they really are.

    I will take some pics of the bracket set up later this afternoon...I gotta go de-algae the side of my house! :cry
    #70
  11. John E Davies

    John E Davies Runs at Mouth Adventurer

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    Here's a "straight answer" for you to read before you call TrailTech:
    http://www.spokanister.net/ktm_stator.htm

    [​IMG]
    #71
  12. The Cheat

    The Cheat Tard

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    I am planning on installing two MR16 Trail Tech HID lights (30watt fog and 30 watt pencil beam) plus I have grip warmers. Can the stock charging system handle this? I want to be able to run both lights and have the grip heaters going. I think the bike has 90 watts stock but I am not sure. It is a 2006 KTM EXC 450. So what do you fellers think?
    #72
  13. ktmnate

    ktmnate Long timer

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    :ear
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  14. flux_capacitor

    flux_capacitor I know a shortcut!

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    Thanks John! I owe you a brew for sure. :thumb I have thought about rewinding the thing myself but it makes me nervous. Still, I may give it a go.










    As for running HID's on the stock system, my understanding is that no it will not work. I could be wrong though, no doubt.

    I assume everyone here knows about ktmtalk.com right?
    #74
  15. leesbian

    leesbian Been here awhile

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    I'll do a bit of investigation into luggage this week - wolfman and dirt bagz are top of the list. Is the rack necessary?

    Other than the mini beta, do you use any hanging panniers? I guess if you can carry everything you've listed in that 1 bag then other bags will be a bit of overkill... planning on taking similar kit, probably also with a pack om my back with camera, camelbak, waterproofs etc. If you could post a picture that would be great.

    That would also be great, although I think I'm gonna order mine tomorrow anyway. What design did you go for? I'm thinking all black suede with orange stitching :evil


    Unfortunately, I'm not in the States - shipping something heavy like a wheel is far too expensive. If a LC4 rear will do what I want, I'll try and source one... never know, being in Europe, where KTM are, maybe I'll get one direct from them for a reasonable price...

    OK, I'll look into this too...

    I hadn't considered this, so thanks for bringing it up! yeah... GPS will be wired in, I want to get some heated grips too (they're SO useful on the BMW...), and I guess I want to try and get something arranged so I can recharge camera batteries on the move too. I saw on another thread there were aftermarket stators kicking out 185 watts, so I may just go for one of those...

    Shopping list is growing... looks like I need about $2000 in parts! :eek1

    When it all arrives I'm only going to have about a week to put it all together too! :eek1
    #75
  16. Stu

    Stu Buffo Maximus

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    Leesbian.

    The cush hub from KTM is a mix...there are three different hubs, backing plates and spacer combinations for three different years on the LC4. The first one I tried (for the '06 LC4) had the sprocket and rotor alignment correct but was too wide by about 7 or 8mm to fit. Basically, the sprocket carrier stuck out of the hub by that distance. I am still working on this trying to get the right combination. When I do I will post the part numbers for the right combination to go on the RFS (or on my 250 EXC 2-stroke, for that matter).

    This summer I am planning on following the Pony Express trail from St. Joseph, MO to Sacramento, CA. Some of the trail is fenced off but some of it can still be ridden. I hope to head up to Prudhoe Bay in Alaska on the Arctic Ocean after that.

    Your RTW trip sounds great! Need a mechanic / photographer to go along?

    Stu
    #76
  17. leesbian

    leesbian Been here awhile

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    Damn. I'm looking at a set of '03 LC4 wheels now... can't really try them before I buy though :-/

    Your trip sounds cool too! when (and if...) I get to Alaska, I plan on going upto Prudhoe Bay and then doing the classic route down to Ushuaia.

    Seriously - I am trying to put together a group of 6 people to go, if you really are interested then sure - a mechanic would definately come in handy (especially seeing as it looks like its now going to be done on KTMs...) :lol3
    #77
  18. flux_capacitor

    flux_capacitor I know a shortcut!

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    Stu, thanks for following up my post about the cush hub. That is good knowledge right there.

    Leesbian, here are a few pictures I have already taken with the Wolfman bag set up. I do not have a rack, just the bracket over the exhaust. These pics were taken with some filler in the bag just to get an idea of it's shape. I have since started mounting the bag further back than this on the bike to give me some more room. Also, with this bag I do not use panniers...I have never found a way to mount them on the 525, and I don't really need them anyway. I sometimes carry a Moose backpack w/hydration bladder as well. I still need to take some pics of the bracket close up.

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    I strapped the rear strap a different way than most, so as to avoid getting muck in the buckle. Works well so far.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    #78
  19. Stu

    Stu Buffo Maximus

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    Flex / Leesbian,

    Three comments:
    1) I will get the cush hub info as soon as I can. I would not purchase the LC4 hub/sprocket carrier without trying them out. It is a lot of money to get wrong.
    2) Your setup on your MXC looks great and is how my 525 will more or less be set up as well. Minimalist approach to bike packing. (I will never forget the comment in The Complete Backpacker, a weight conscious fanatic book author, that at one point he caught himself tearing the labels off of tea bags. My kind of guy!)
    3) There have been many posts about the ability of the rear subframe to carry any additional weight. The Wolfman Minibag is one solution and the other is just don't worry about it. My RFS and my 250 2-stroke have been flipped over on their tails repeatedly, slammed to the ground, etc. without any damage to the subframe. I just cannot get worked up about this non-issue. (There were some recent posts of Europeans taking their MXCs with ProMoto racks to Africa with what looked like about 3 gallon plastic gas jugs attached. If you can fly over sand dunes with a load...really.)

    Stu
    #79
  20. leesbian

    leesbian Been here awhile

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    Excellent. thanks :)

    It does look like you can fit a whole load of kit in that bag, cool - putting one on the shopping list now :D

    Is that the Acerbis 25L tank you have there?

    I'm about to order one of those now - apparently [according to TT, at least] to fit on the '03 525 I need to use an '04 seat with it
    #80