F650GS Oryx re-vival. Faster, better, stronger. Here's how this story goes, bought my first bike and motor vehicle back in 2012, an F650GS based bike equipped with the TT Oryx kit. ATTN: Picture heavy and sorta long introduction. 17.400km at the time, not in the best shape, but not too shabby either. A couple parts missing, some broken, some switched for something else, but the bike ran. First things first, restored her back to the original looks by putting on the correct front fender and bashplate. Got my hands onto a Trofeo kit (steel rear frame, same tank, KTM plastics) from Italy a while later and put that on (minus exhaust and header, more on that later), just because I could, I guess? The seat was horrible. Hard as a brick. But I liked that it was taller (I'm 6'4"). Converted it back to the original shortly thereafter. All that happened in 2012, yet I was already getting annoyed with some details, such as the mounting of the front fender. The black tubes on the side, that connect it to the faux-tank plastic are held on by a couple M5 bolts that go on from inside the plastic. These have to come off every time you need the remove the faux-tank plastic. And you have to almost break your fingers to get them in. These photos do not do it justice. Through 2013 it went almost unchanged, swapped an F650 Rally bashplate on for a 10k km ride through the Balkans in late summer and put other handguards on. Had a great time, met many friendly people with some of whom I still hold contact, saw a lot of cool things. Of course it didn't stay that way. We have a word in german, "verschlimmbessern", to improve something for the worse. While not everything I did back then fell into that category, some of it sure did. I didn't know better, barely ever held a tool, didn't have a welder, not even a drill press of angle grinder of my own. One of those things was my attempt (I'm sure it would've worked, but try doing that with just basic tools...takes aaaaaaages and the end result is "meh" at best) to put on a nav tower with rally front. No, I don't feel like talking about it. Mothballed, all I still have is the fairing I moulded from the one shown. Around that time I must've switched back to a standard off the shelf fender since the other was starting to crack around the mounting points (vacuum molded plastic, that's where it was the thinnest). And I did put the Trofeo kit and the (custom) header that I was given with the Trofeo kit along with an aftermarket exhaust on, since I wanted a high-slung exhaust. The one that came with the Oryx is the same used for the F650GS Rally. It did work fine with that, since the rear fuel tank gave it some protection, but on the Oryx, it always took a hit when you dropped the bike. Thanks to a friend from the UK, I received a used set of beefed up footpeg mounts and footpegs made by Overland Solutions. Before, if I took a fall on the left side, the footpeg mount would leave a dent in the header. Almost 2kg of extra weight, though. Installed a Unifilter, moved the battery and VR between the tank and engine (got me a stick welder to make the tray) for easier access and replaced the stock FPR/filter combo with a seperate filter and pressure reg. Oh, and I put the Rekluse in, after it collected dust for months. The original clutch was insanely hard to pull. Now, the seat was bothering me. Hard as a brick, remember? Lucky me, I was able to coerce a friend into selling me his spare Rally seat. Higher still, more comfortable, 3 compartments for tools or e.g. a rainsuit built in. Had to modify the (glass fiber) seat pan a little to make it fit and repair some cracks, all done and finished in the photo. That took place in late 2014, must've also done the handlebars controls (clutch, switches, throttle) as well as switching to wider handlebars and putting a riser on at the same time. Next thing I know, the shifter forks are so worn the bike slips out of first and second under heavy acceleration. Got a donor bike and swapped the engine since the bike was my only means of transportation. Upon closer inspection, the whole motor was quite worn and manufactured in a later year than the bike. Must've been swapped before? The mileage of the chassis was mostly traceable, but that motor must've had well above that. No idea when or why it was first changed. Winter came around, didn't keep me from riding it, though. The new motor had so much more punch...powerwheelies were a thing now! Just goes to show how done for the old one was. May 2015 I went on a quick, spontaneous trip to Slovenia and Croatia, again, had a blast with some partly challenging tracks supplied by an inmate. Either way, this trip sort of started the build this thread is going to be about. The unfortunate end of this trip, rather. Literally not even 2km away from the Hostel where I was going to spend the night I got into a classic "SMIDSY" accident. Straight up t-boned a car pulling out of a parking spot. Luckily I was going slow, since I had almost zero time to react, that's how close he pulled out in front of me. At least no one got hurt. The car looks worse for wear, but ultimately, my bike was more expensive to repair, being built from a kit that cost you 8.500€ on top of the cost of the bike didn't help, either. From my first look right after, it didn't look too bad, but boy did it add up. Oh, by the way, fuck insurance companies. The one I had to deal with in particular. Luckily we (lawyer and me) ended up getting concrete proof that they were straight up telling us lies, but it still ended up dragging out almost 15 months before I received the last payment (incl. interest and late fees, at that point). So here's what I was left with: A bike with damaged frame, all front plastics damaged, triple clamp damaged, front break disc and caliper adapter damaged, headlight and speedo support bent, and many more smaller things damaged. If I carried out the repairs by myself (which is what I had intended) the estimate was almost as much as the bike, had it not been damaged, was worth in the market back then. A full, ground-up rebuild was in order, if I wanted to ever get this bike in good condition again. One of the problems: Good luck getting parts. I knew TT still had some of the plastics in stock, but almost everything else was gone for good. Used parts? Forget it. There's so few of those bikes in existence, there is no used parts market. Most are garage queens, as well. Thought about it for a short while, then said "Fuck it" and went for it. I always kept a list of things that I'd love to implement on this bike, to truly make it my perfect allrounder Dualsport. I knew the 650GS bikes inside out, loved my bike and the memories associated with it and it's important to know that by then, I had a TIG welder, a small CNC, spent some time studying mech. eng. and a tool chest filled to the brim. Certainly much better than what I started out with. To fall into the category of the perfect allrounder, it needs to be under 175kg with empty fuel tank and no lugagge, easy and quick to service and troubleshoot, bulletproof, good suspension. Hence I made a list to build this bike, my dream bike, from what was left from my first ever own vehicle. Which would be the equivalent of Lincolns' axe afterwards. -simple (for an FI bike...) wiring loom -all important plastics held on by 1/4 turn fasteners -battery easily accessible -all waterproof connectors etc. -fuses easily accessible -not having to unbolt anything other than plastics to access vital parts -dual, all aluminium radiators -no bulbs (except Xenon high beam) -keep it slim -rugged, nothing that'll regulary break in drop -change everything necessary to make the bike fit me perfectly -put the aluminium swingarm on that's sitting on the shelf -increase suspension travel to 300mm front, 280 rear That's essentially it. Now where to begin? For me, since I am located in Germany, I first went to what I'd say is the equivalent of the MOT, to talk through options regarding swapping the frame. Problem is, here you do have to have safety-relevant modifications to your bike (includes plastics, handlebars, suspension, brakes and so much more) approved by an certified engineer, these modifications are then noted in the paperwork of your bike (frame). Now if I just swapped the frame, I'd have to have a ton of patience, procure many certificates and have some luck to get all these mods approved again. In the end, I took a used frame I had in stock, crossed out the old number, punched in the number from the original Oryx frame, this way I can keep all the approvals and only have to get the transfer of the frame number approved. Once that was done, right on the phone with TT to see what parts they still had. Crap. Exactly as I feared, only some of the plastics, that's it. So I have to virtually make everything that I cannot substitute for off the shelf parts. Next up: The humble beginnings of the build.