maintenance on a 990 adv

Discussion in 'Crazy-Awesome almost Dakar racers (950/990cc)' started by turnitonagain, Oct 28, 2012.

  1. crashmaster

    crashmaster ow, my balls!

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    Youre going to get a biased opinion on the OC. :lol3 But I'll try.

    Its hands down the most all around great performing, and most capable bike I have ever owned. It does everything and does it well. If I could only have one bike, the 990 would be it.

    Many folks that ride these bikes are coming from a dirt bike background, so they tend to ride not only dirt roads, but nasty two track and stuff that cant even remotely be called a road.

    High strung dirt bikes need lots of maintenance, way more than the 990. We are talking oil changes and valve checks every 15 hours or so, constantly changing tires, etc. So coming from that background, by comparison, the 990 doesnt need much attention. It doesnt really need any more attention than most other big DS bikes.

    Its tough as nails. Very crash worthy.

    It will hands down run away from the other big DS bikes in off road conditions, yet will still run with sport bikes in twisties all day long, eat up freeway with big touring bikes all day long, and do it well.

    To me it feels like a big ass dirt bike, and thats what I like. It is a big ass dirt bike really. The geometry is such that the attack position feels natural, feels like it was designed to be ridden standing on the pegs. It rides like a much lighter bike, when you get it underway, all the weight just seems to disappear since it is carried very low compared to other bikes. But when you get it crossed up in the sand whoops and try to save it, or when you realize you are trying to back into a turn with way more speed than you thought you had, then you realize, shit, this is a big bike. :lol3

    This bike has way too many strengths to list actually.

    But here are the issues, some may affect you, some not:

    Wind protection is lacking for some. The best solution IMO is to cut down the stock screen and get your helmet in clean airflow. This is only an issue for some folks.

    Tall riders, over 6 ft, find the bike cramped when riding in the sitting position and usually lower the pegs.

    Water pump is a pretty regular wear item. But the CJ wp shaft is looking like the solution more and more.

    To do just about anything to the bike, the plastic and tanks need to come off, and that takes time to R&R. There are workarounds for some items like the oil change. I dont remove anything except the skid plate to do my oil change, and can get it done in under an hour. I dont know why folks think the 990 needs a lot more attention than other big bikes. The intervals with most other big DS bikes are about the same. Just do some needed mods and keep up with what the manual tells you to do and the bike will behave itself, even if a nutcase is attached to the throttle.

    Sidestand is bolted to the engine. A modification called the relocation kit is money well spent if you like to thrash the hell out of this bike in big rocks.

    Fuel economy while easy cruising is between 42 and 36 mpg depending on model and gearing. When you get into ankle deep sand and start really flogging it, you can bring that down to the high 20's without even thinking about it. :lol3 But, its a 1 liter bike, it likes gas.

    On long trips, carrying a 2 gal Rotopax on the tail is very nice, or you can do the adventure tank mod in which you lose one can, and have an extra 2 gallons where one can used to sit, and its plumbed into the main fuel line. Or you can buy the Safari tanks which hold an astounding 12 gallons after the stretch out a little bit.

    I'm sure others will chime in but thats about all that stands out for me.

    The throttle on this bike is like a hit off the crack pipe, and once you take a few hits, you'll want more. :lol3

    The bike is just plain a helluva lot of fun to ride in sand, rocks, mountain twisties, etc, and that's why so many of us are in love with it.

    My buddy probably gave the best endorsement for the 990, and he rides a 12 GS. We had been on the pavement most of the day, then hit some desert two track. There was a little narrow sand wash that I wanted to take to get to where we were going. I asked him if he wanted to take it. He said, "lemme ride your bike and I'll do it." :lol3
    #21
  2. crofrog

    crofrog Long timer

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    Minor typo there. It's bolted to the engine which is why it needs to be relocated.
    #22
  3. crashmaster

    crashmaster ow, my balls!

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    Doh! Thanks. I bolted it back to the engine, Fixed! :lol3
    #23
  4. Qwik

    Qwik Adrenaline Addict

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    I have been riding for 40+ years. Everything from GSXRs (Air/oil, and Water Cooled) to BMWs to my old KX500. I have never had a bike as capable of doing EVERYTHING like this is. I can tour, Rail the twisties, go play in technical offroad, and commute on it. If I could only have one bike this would be it. It does it all. Some minor mods make things easier for maintenance (Oil hose drain is Key) and you always have to do some little changes/adjustments (Bar risers, Seat, suspension) but I have never been more satisfied with a bike.
    #24
  5. turnitonagain

    turnitonagain Been here awhile

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    Thank you soo much for your insight, personal experience, and knowledge it is all much appreciated especially as I'm new to the entire advbike segment. My dad actually owned a 950 ADV and told me that they were amazing machines to have, but time has passed since he sold it. So, I wanted to ask all of the kind folks in the OC realm. No, you were not being an ass lol I never changed the oil or performed any maintenance on my bike for two reasons, the first was convenience, the second being I was too lazy to learn how to. one day I woke up and decided that I was missing out on a lot of riding opportunities, both domestically and eventually foray into international travel. So, I went on a quest to search for a RTW/XC machine that will allow me to pursue my dream, and the KTM was always on my list, especially since I used to be hooked on the Paris-Dakar Rallies, which inspired me to fall in love with moto travel.
    #25
  6. scorpion

    scorpion Two arm bandit

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    If you plan in riding it a lot especially off-road, you are either rich or a mechanic. :deal

    I learned a lot riding and wrenching on this bike.
    I am smarter, faster, better looking because of it.
    #26
  7. crashmaster

    crashmaster ow, my balls!

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    I totally agree with that, but no one ever said that I knew what I was talking about either. :lol3

    Just like Katoom119 recommended, get out, look at, and if all possible ride each bike you are considering. I know that's easier said than done, but at least try to. Buy the bike that you really like, one that gets your heart racing, and for that, a test ride is key. Any bike can be taken around the world, but its much more fun on a bike that you love to ride, no matter what bike that may be. Some ride old Trail 90's, small thumpers, Gold Wings, Harley's, Katooms, GS's etc and despite the advantages and disadvantages to each, if you love the bike and it makes you happy, nothing else really matters.
    #27
  8. el queso

    el queso toda su base

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    As a former KLR owner, let me tell you, you're going to be one happy dude. I'm talking shit eatin' grin happy.

    KTM does things a little differently from the Japanese manufacturers, so you'll have a little learning curve the first time you work on it. But if you're like me, you will learn to appreciate the engineering. I didn't get an extended warranty because I plan on doing most of the maintenance myself
    #28
  9. SF_Rider

    SF_Rider Been here awhile

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    I've been really stoked on my 2008 ADV.

    I've had a bunch of bikes. My last before the KTM was a crappy Ducati ST2. First year of the model and FULL of gremlins. Total piece of shit bike with the added bonus of high routine maintainance on top!

    Nearing 2 years and 20,000 miles on my ktm with no issues. Love the bike. Have only ridden short trips 2 up. MUCH more comfortable (with rear top box) than any other sport touring bike I've owned.
    #29
  10. two trackin fool

    two trackin fool Long timer

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    I had issues with the investment .
    I am a dirt biking fool .
    I have had a few different street bikes but no sport bikes although I tried to ride like I did ! LoL ~ As soon as this paper work CRAP is strightened out ~ I will be bring her home !!!

    Thanks to you all for your time and honesty !!
    #30
  11. Kelvininin

    Kelvininin Been here awhile

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    I wouldn't say that the maintenance is too terrible. There is just a lot of stuff in the way, and it's a little intense, as far as the number of steps that have to be completed.

    This is my second bike to a Victory Vision, compared to the KTM the Vision is virtually maintenance free, an oil change on the Vision takes 15 minuets, its a drain plug, filter, and fill. The oil change on the KTM takes 1.5 hours, you have to pull off the crash bars, or at least the left one, the bash plate, left upper fairing, left tank, then its two plugs, two screens, a filter. Reassemble, fill, let run, top off. Not hard, just takes time. I did install a hose to make the oil changes a lot easier next time, the only problem is I am do to check the valves on the next oil change.

    I find the bike is a little finicky at times, there is a flat spot in the throttle around 2500 rpm, min a 10 and stock, its jumpy so keep your throttle inputs in check, but damn is it fun. I kind of wish I went for something with a shaft drive, but I'll live.

    I haven't found a comfortable saddle for it yet, but maybe one day.
    #31
  12. turnitonagain

    turnitonagain Been here awhile

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    Im going to go take a look at this machine @ some point tomorrow. Its a 2012 990ADV Demo for a good price!
    #32
  13. crashmaster

    crashmaster ow, my balls!

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    I bought a 2007 demo bike. I was afraid that the break in might not have been so gentle. :lol3 However with all those hi rev demo rides on my bike the rings sure were seated well, doesnt use a drop of oil in 4000 miles. :lol3
    #33
  14. katanarama

    katanarama riding > posting

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    awesome photos CM.


    [​IMG]
    #34
  15. Zuber

    Zuber Zoob

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    When you make the deal on the bike, I suggest you try to buy enough parts to maintain the bike for a year or so and buy them at dealer cost. I've found most dealers will go for it. "I'll take the bike, but I'd like you to sell me a one time parts order at your cost". Get a W.P. seal kit, oil filters, one air filter, maybe even a fuel filter kit, tires, more tires, tubes. I ordered a pair of hubs, disk brakes, and built up a set of 19/17" wheels.

    Riding two up, get a custom seat and some type of back rest for the passenger, like a trunk. Goes a long way for comfort. Also, the 19/17 wheels work great on the street.
    #35
  16. GoNOW

    GoNOW Long timer

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    I work as a motorcycle mechanic by trade.
    When people say the big KTM is hard to work on, they are comparing it to a singer cylinder dirt bike, or maybe the BMW where most of the engine is outside the bike.
    Sure, you do have to strip the tanks off on the 9x0 for most work, but once you do, everything is easy to get at.
    For an oil change on my bike, I don't remove the tanks.

    I suck the oil out of the tank with the oil extractor. http://www.harborfreight.com/6-1-4-quarter-gallon-oil-extractor-46149.html
    Remove the oil drain bolt and drop the rest of the out of the bottom of the engine.
    Remove the two bolts and lower down the skid plate.
    I then remove the two bolts and remove the oil filter cap, keeping a big gulp cup under it to catch any extra oil.
    Clean area, install new filter, reinstall cap.
    Raise up skid plate and reinstall bolts.
    Then add oil like normal.

    The two screen are there to save the engine in case of something catastrophic going wrong, in the case of the one under the engine. And the screen in the oil tank is to prevent sucking anything down that happen to have fallen in the tank. You don't have to check and clean them every time. On my bike, I only do it when I do major service, like the valve check.

    As for valve checks, once you have the tanks and carbs/throttle bodies off, access to the valves is easy. Most other street bikes make this very hard with tight clearances around the valve covers. It makes it very difficult to even see the valves, and getting in a feeler gauge near imposable. KTM does put some thought into the maintenance of their bikes.

    KTM is designed different then the Japanese brands. And as such, many shops that are used to the Japanese style, have a hard time with the KTM. I maybe see 1 KTM (of any model) a month in my shop, but many Japaneses and even Chinese brands. I think that's why so many KTMs are serviced poorly and have a reputation of poor reliability.

    BMW's are different too. What should be simple and obvious on a BMW, is seldom that. It's like they designed it from scratch, never looking to see how every other motorcycle on the planet does it and that it might be the way to go.

    And I never understood Harley's. it's like they don't believe in using computers to design stuff. Instead they go to a well stocked hardware store and see what they can find to make a piston out of. :D
    #36
  17. two trackin fool

    two trackin fool Long timer

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    Yes I will be getting a trunk not only for pileon but I commute daily so I also need a place for my Lunch .
    Is there a stainless steel oil filter available for the 990 ? I have one in my KLR and it seemed to work out well - I was thinking about a second set of wheels for street / dirt set up ! I may have to get a price on those .
    #37
  18. scorpion

    scorpion Two arm bandit

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    The givi/KTM trunk is large but junk the will crack on the first ride.
    The KTM Gobi is more better.
    The aloo-mini-um Jesse trunk is the bomb.
    Ann I'd you're worried about lunch most 990 riders are fed solely through internal rage.
    #38
  19. two trackin fool

    two trackin fool Long timer

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    Well I talked to the dealer today about some parts (on the phone) .
    It seems there is no Stainless oil filter available ? The parts guy gave me a price on the oil tank screen thinking it was for the engine .
    $20 oil filter element ? I was kinda suprised on that - :D
    Guess I'll be looking for a parts supplier altough the sales guy did say something about 15% discount with purchase .

    Internal rage ..........maybe alittle :lol3
    #39
  20. Bronco3738

    Bronco3738 Mike

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    Time to get a new parts guy. There is a Scotts Stainless available for the 990/950. Look here, http://www.ktmtwins.com/scotts-ktm-950-990-rc8-lc8-oil-filter
    #40