The life of an Erzberg… a defarkling thread

Discussion in 'Crazy-Awesome almost Dakar racers (950/990cc)' started by oldfuddy, Apr 12, 2015.

  1. oldfuddy

    oldfuddy Long timer

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    I’ve heard a saying along the lines of “if you love something, let it go, and if it comes back, it was meant to be”. I had this happen with a 2009 Erzberg and figured I’d document its journey, as it is this bike that got me hooked on LC8s, and KTM in general.

    I’ve decided to bring the bike back to OEM as much as I’m comfortable with and will document its purchase, its farkling, its travel across the US, how I lost it, how it was found, and its return journey to its original owner (me), and the defarkling process that I just started…. What parts will I replace? What parts are still readily available? How far will I defarkle? All unknown, and no timeframe to complete the project.

    It all started back in 2010 while searching dealers for left over SEs. I’d read enough forums and watched enough videos by then to convince myself I needed one. As luck would have it, I found one 30 minutes from my house at the time in Fredericksburg VA. I called the dealer, they said they had one, and three hours later it was in my driveway.

    This is the day I bought it…..

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    Since this was going to be my primary mode of transportation in DC on the HOV lanes, it needed storage… so a BDCW large rack and a Fat Max box and I was all set. Sent a picture to Kurt at BDCW… he immediately sent me a disclaimer that the box might be a little too big for the subframe. Yup, it was, but I didn’t have $500 - $1,200 for bags/panniers so it was what it was. Used that thing for 2 years like that while slabbing, never cracked the subframe.

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    I then did the canisterectomy….

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    Got an Adventure Machines jetting kit, pre-filter, and some flex jets….

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    Some of CJ’s foot peg extenders and a Hammerhead shift lever…

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    After about a year I decided it was time to change it up with some black plastic and some EE hand guards and Remus cans…. Also put on the Scott’s shark fin and a BRP chain guide….

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    Then the day came, I retired and moved to Southern Arizona. Perfect place for the SE, right? Well, none of my friends had big bikes, all smokers and thumpers. I took the SE with them on rides, but some of the technical rocky climbs were dangerous on the SE, the miles and miles of deep sand washes would wear me out, and after a good nap up on the side of a mountain where I thought for an instant I saw our creator, I decided I needed a much smaller and lighter bike. Being retired I did not have the income for two bikes, the SE had to go. Against my better judgment I traded it for a ’12 500 EXC. The 500 was the perfect weapon for the riding we were doing… but I missed the SE. I called the dealer I traded it in at a week later to see if I could buy it back, and they said it sold just a few days after I traded it. So that was it, it was gone. As the weeks and months went on, I wished I had it back.

    About 8 months later, and after going back to work I couldn’t take it anymore and found this ’07 out in Fontana CA. Did a fly-n-ride and brought it home. This is a pic of it the day I rode it home… it was over 100 degrees outside for the trip on a bike I knew absolutely nothing about with trashed chain and sprockets and in this pic it was 117 degrees out and I was in the middle of nowhere desert.

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    A few months later I bought another ’07 as the one above was in SM mode and I wanted one in ADV mode too….

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    I finally decided that what I really wanted was another Erzberg. That was the void I needed to fill. So, I sold one of the ‘07s and went on an Erzberg hunt. Over the course of about a year I found a few, but they were all high mileage 25K miles or more, and had been ridden pretty hard… not what I was looking for.

    Then, I found this on eBay in NC for $12,900 with 500 original miles and except for the FMF cans and a tail tidy and a little surface rust on some of the steel from being next to the ocean, it was perfect….

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    However, I was a little too late and this bike was sold and later used for a Rev ‘it project.


    So, back to checking classifieds across the states weekly. Very discouraged, I did my normal Google search and I ran across an SE in Northern Cali on Craigslist. The second I opened the ad and saw the first pic I about crapped my pants. Not only was it a low mileage Erzberg, it was my original low mileage Erzberg!!!! The mods were EXACTLY like the ones I had done and the black SMR tank panels that read SUPER ENDURO, instead of SUPER MOTO were the icing on the cake. That was definitely mine, and it was for sale.

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    I called the owner, determined it was mine that I had bought in VA and subsequently traded in out in AZ. He pretty much only used it for slabbing and had only put a few thousand miles on it since I had it last. So it was still very low miles in great shape. I went to the bank the next day for a cashiers check, jumped in the truck with my wife, son, and Lab and drove 13 hrs to Northern Cali to pick it up and then immediately drove 13hrs back.

    Here it is in my truck 10 minutes after purchase…..

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    13hrs later in my garage… BLAM!!!!! Got it back!!!!!!!

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    First order of business was to strip it down, wash it up, and figure out what to do with it. The remus cans were a little beat up so for giggles I put the original cans back on it that I had saved when I first took them off years ago, and that’s when I decided to bring it back to its OEM state….

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    So…. normally at this point we’d be talking about what mods, what set-up, what exhaust, what lights, fairing or no fairing, extra fuel, tires, GPS, seat, etc…. but, instead, this thread will be just the opposite, we’re going back to stock, all fluids will be changed, pads replaced, scratches fixed or replaced, worn parts replaced, back to how it rolled off the floor, how far back is yet to be determined, but here we go….
    #1
  2. Tomah

    Tomah In transit ...

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    More, more!

    :lurk
    #2
  3. Dustodust

    Dustodust Long timer

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    Must be nice
    #3
  4. 5 speed

    5 speed Long timer

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    Pretty neat story. I came close to buying one that sat in my dealers showroom for a year plus. I got him down to 9,200 but at the time I couldnt pop that much cash, and even at 6 1 I was on my toes. My final thought was if it looks like a dirt bike I might try and ride it like one and that would be a painful mistake. So I bought a used 950 adv for 6,900.00 which I dont regret.

    I do see the allure of these bikes.

    I often wonder what happened to some of my sold bikes, the ones I really miss and think about tracking them down by the vin number, seems easy enough, right?
    #4
  5. oldfuddy

    oldfuddy Long timer

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    I had hoped one day I'd be able to get a few bikes that I grew up on and restore them... but financially its just not in the cards for me.

    I've heard of folks tracking down their old bikes via the VIN... not sure how though. Old bikes are definitely cool...
    #5
  6. rattis

    rattis Long timer

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    A 950 SER is way cooler than cool!
    #6
  7. TSkelly

    TSkelly Adventurer

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    Cool to have your baby back.
    I have always been very fortunate to be able to keep my toys as long as I wanted them and sell them to make room for their better replacements. If I ever did have to sell a certain bike due to financial constraints it would leave an empty spot in my heart. In my life its kids, dogs, then bikes and honestly they feel like they are all equally important to me where in reality they are listed in proper order.
    #7
  8. DavidD

    DavidD Been here awhile

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    Well done, really pleased for you. I think there is a lot to be said for having a bike that is as original as possible, especially if you owned it before :rofl

    I am fortunate to have a few bikes and all except two are 'farkled' and so many extras that I have lost count. But two of my bikes are and will remain as intended by their designers.

    Last year I was really sad and shocked to hear of the death of Massimo Tamburini :bow - the designer of the Ducati 916 and I resolved to find myself one of his masterpieces. I finally tracked down a 998S, in red of course, totally original and utterly gorgeous - I can stare at it all day long. Riding it takes it to another dimension.

    My other original bike is my SuperEnduro. I had been looking for ages, but here in the UK they are really rare. I finally got a 2006 model with 1200 miles (!!) and unmarked. The only extras were the Akro's - do they count?!? Anyway - really happy with my find and I can totally relate to how you felt when you got yours.

    I will leave you with a comment from my local KTM dealer - I proudly said I had finally managed to find a 950 SuperEnduro and that they were really rare - he promptly replied "there's a reason for that - KTM could only find 3000 people in the whole world mad enough to think they could ride the thing" He said it with a smile, but there is a grain of truth in there..................

    Hope the rest of your project goes to plan :clap
    #8
  9. oldfuddy

    oldfuddy Long timer

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    concur... family is first in my heart as well... at the end of the day thats what we have.
    #9
  10. oldfuddy

    oldfuddy Long timer

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    didn't know that about Ducati, thats sad. never owned one, but admire the craftsman ship and legendary sound. :deal

    1200 miles on the SE! Wow! That's a keeper for sure!!!! :clap
    #10
  11. oldfuddy

    oldfuddy Long timer

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    forgot to mention as I replace stock parts on the bike for various reasons, all OEM parts removed will go in a bin and stay with the bike so as to always have the originals. The only thing I don't have original for this bike are the plastics. I sold them when I got rid of it. Everything else I took off years ago I kept and am reinstalling. As for the farkles removed, they will be used on another SE. If you knew how I ride you'd understand why I need spare parts :rofl
    #11
  12. oldfuddy

    oldfuddy Long timer

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    did some more cleaning... I use nu finish scratch remover for the frame and then polish on top of it. I like nu finish because its not abrasive and comes off easy and lasts a long time. I also use a long time garage resident called Pig Spit. Stuff is magic and literally lasts for years while extending the life of what its on. I don't use it on paint, but it works great on plastic, vinyl, cabling, motor, etc... just a little, not a lot.

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    cleaned the air box and checked the intakes for dirt/grime.. there was none.

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    Then installed a new air filter....

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    took the stock mirrors off and put a pair on I found on eBay that are brand new take offs. They are perfect. If you have some of these from your SE or ADV hang on to them because Austria doesn't have anymore when I checked and the US supply is out. they are not discontinued, but no build date as of now for more. Also stripped the old grips off and added the Erzberg stock hand guards back on in place of the EE guards I put on back in 2010.

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    cleaned the fuel tank up....

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    removed the BRP chain guide and installed the stock guide. Cleaned the chain grease off the stock guide with Kerosene. Works great!

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    decals and some plastic arrived... took 3 days to get the plastic... took 11 weeks to get the decals :splat

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    more hopefully tomorrow.....
    #12
  13. chasbo

    chasbo Long timer

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    Great thread and congrats on finding your original bike! I had to sell my 08 Adventure that I had saved up forever to get and to this day I still feel the lump in my throat that got me the day it rolled out of my driveway. Now I am saving up to get another, but wish I could find "mine" as you did.
    #13
  14. mondrage

    mondrage Been here awhile

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    Right, good thing you couldn't "justify" the upkeep of two bikes. Just imagine if you could!!!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    #14
  15. oldfuddy

    oldfuddy Long timer

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    Yes, did the same when I originally bought the SE. Had to save like crazy and sell some stuff and still had to get a loan for it. The day I drove it to the dealer to trade it in the fuel pump gave out about 1 mile from the dealer. I had to push it the rest of the way. Didn't hit me until a few weeks later that was a sign i should not have got rid of it and I felt I made a huge bad decision. Hope your able to get another '08 soon and keep looking. I was lucky that's all to find mine.
    #15
  16. chasbo

    chasbo Long timer

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    I will, saving right now and will have the cash for another one before the end of the year. I got mine in Berkeley Springs, WV, which isn't that far from where you got your Erzberg. Now here we both are in AZ LOL... I am considering getting an SE to replace the 08. Hopefully I can find the perfect fit when the time comes.
    #16
  17. oldfuddy

    oldfuddy Long timer

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    Good luck with the search. For SEs I used google and typed in "KTM 950 Super Enduro for sale bike finds". At least one came up a month in the states. Sometimes two. I did the search a couple times a week cause SEs only stick around for a couple days at most and then they are gone. Cheers and good luck.
    #17
  18. oldfuddy

    oldfuddy Long timer

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    removed the overflow tank and checked for sludge/sand... was very surprised to see very little residue.

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    Cleaned it out.....

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    had purchased a new radiator for the SE I crashed, and decided I could not see putting a brand new radiator on a bike I'm desert racing, so I took the radiator off the Erzberg (its was dinged up from rock hits anyway) and put that on the other SE and put the new radiator on the Erzberg. flushed everything out first... was very happy to not find sand anywhere... my '07 with 30K miles is still spitting sand, this '09 not so much....

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    cleaned up the fans....

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    filled up the radiator and overflow tank with engine ice... let it settle and topped it off several times, will need to run it, purge it, and check again.... installed a new radiator cap....

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    Pulled the pre-filter and put the stock snorkel back on....

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    thats it for tonight.......
    #18
    DistortedAxis likes this.
  19. OrangeDevil37

    OrangeDevil37 Been here awhile

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    this is a pretty awesome thread and bike but one question. usually the aftermarket stuff makes the bike better than stock and better for you so why go back to a worst running setup?
    #19
  20. JRod152

    JRod152 will work for tires

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    Beautiful bike! You're not helping my "want" for another!
    #20