GravelCrew GCRad1 - My KTM950ADV story + upgrades

Discussion in 'Dakar champion (950/990)' started by GCRad1, Jul 11, 2007.

  1. GCRad1

    GCRad1 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2006
    Oddometer:
    525
    Location:
    costa mesa, ca., usa, earth, sector-28
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    TABLE OF CONTENTS
    PAGE - 01
    Just keep scrolling down.
    Post#01 - The "how it came to be" Story
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    Post#03 - Tires - the only thing I did for a while
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    Post#04 - Stenhouse 30mm Bar Risers & Bleeder Valves
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    Post#05 - KTM Engine Guards & Fastway Foot Pegs
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    Post#06 - Radiator Screen - Adventure Cooler Protection
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    Post#07 - Touratech GPS Mount
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    Post#12 - Sneak Peek:BRP Tripple Clamp EVO ProTaper Bars FMFQ's
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    Post#13 - 1st Round FMF's
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    Post#14 - Battery Replacement
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    PAGE - 02
    Post#23 - Top Box
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    Post#30 - Header tubes to Young Gun Performance Coatings - Ceramic
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    Page - 03 & 04
    NEXT - Precision Concepts rebuillds / tunes forks and rear shock.
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    Uni Filter air pre-filter
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    Rally Raid ProGrips
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    Page - 08
    post #108
    Kickstand electrical switch Mod
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    post #109
    Scotts Steering Stabilizer
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    Post #110
    Carbon Fiber Side Panel Protection
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    :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

    My KTM950ADV story
    One day in 2006, after recently reacquainting myself with two wheels with the purchase of a 1997 Honda XR400:
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    Honda XR400 [1997] The DirtDawg Chronicles - Read my XR400 Report:
    http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=272676
    The wife said she would like to ride with me again. Not happening on the XR400.

    We use to ride a lot back when I had a Yamaha RZ350, when we where dating. After going to Japan 1992 and seeing the current crop of two-stroke street bikes at that time, I decided to sell the bike, small mistake, but it was for a good cause, the honeymoon in Hawaii. We use to have a blast with that bike but we where getting our life and family started, so the time for two wheeled pleasures where of the peddled type. Life was rolling and later off into the four wheeled dirt sport of rally i go!
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    The Escort at it finest at the 2003 Ramada Express International Rally in Laughlin Nevada.

    While great fun, Rally is ten times more work, 10X-time, 10X-manpower-effort and money! I expired my budget, but I did take home the 1st place title for the Western States Championships! I wanted to take it to the next level, but the wallet did not allow, nor was there an resonable investment on return via sponsorship of a rally car [pre XGames and mainstream TV].

    After the rally season and a year or so of more hard work, a family outing would have us with friends camping out in the desert as their son was getting into dirt bikes and there is sat, a Honda XR400 and the owner asked if I knew how to ride. That was an easy answer and one ride was all it took. I laughed while I rode. I stopped and pondered just why I had been away from the bikes for so long! Time to make up for lost time on two wheels!

    Funny how a month later I would find my own as I purchased a 1997 Honda XR400 at the first of 2006. First offroad bike in many years and back to having fun and very inexpensively compared to the rally car and actually more time driving/riding vs working and planning for rallies. The XR400 is plated and legit, but I need to make it a bit more legit as I live in Orange County, California and this bike came from the high desert – mountain area’s where the police are a bit more relaxed about the details. Yea, no turn signals, no speedO, no battery for brake light… need I say more? But it is sooo fun! But that one day came where the wife said, I want to ride with you and the XR isn’t going to do it.

    As motorcycle enthusiast we are always dreaming of expanding the quiver and while I have the Honda XR400 and the Honda Civic, I was thinking of keeping it all in the family by adding say a Honda TransAlp or the AfricanTwin. With the wife making the statement that we could be in the market for a bike we could both ride, this thought quickly accelerated with frenzy excitement!

    While the dream-search was kicking in, I remembered seeing the KTM Dakar bike in the RedBull corporate lobby and the fact that it is THE rally bike began to burn in my mind. Plus, while working for C16autostyle magazine, the two owners have the 950ADV’s as well, but at that time even thinking about the 950ADV's was so far out of reach. But now, orange was on the brain! The wife and I started talking about the what-if and the wife was ready as she stated we could go look and she was ready to purchase, as she wanted to ride! The closest KTM dealer is 3-Brothers Racing in Costa Mesa. We stop in to see two 950ADV’s sitting right there! A black one and an orange one! They tried to push me onto the 950R super MX thingy that was just coming out, but it would be a couple of months before they would have one. I was not even remotely interested as I was sitting on the black one saying this is the one with the wife standing right there with the checkbook in hand. Yet, they did not try to sell me the bike! We were asking all the questions and my wife and I were ready to buy and ride that day!!! We walked out mad, insulted and totally confused as to what just happened. That afternoon we drove all over the place looking at bikes! I think we drove over 150 miles looking at Aprilia’s, Ducati’s Suzuki’s all looking for other dualsport types. I was not on the BMW tip nor did I see myself (at the time) owning a BMW.

    BUT I kept thinking about the KTM!!! I wanted it, I just did not want to deal with 3-Brothers of Costa Mesa, but I kept the KTM catalog brochure and read it and any-everything I could read that night. Next morning we where off to Del Ammo Motorsports. They only had a 950ADV-S model. I have 30” in-seam and that was not happening. [I think otherwise now] I was trying to see if the lowered seat would fit the S-model and they did not know that much about it, nor did they have the seat in stock to check. The lowered seat is a factory option, yet they had not ever thought to test it. Too many other bikes on the floor I guess. BUT, their service guy is one of the BEST! People with KTM’s drive from all over to have their service work done there. My wife was asking if I was seriously considering the blue/orange combo while she was falling in love with the Ducati Monstrada. A grippy tarmac Monstrada would go much deeper faster into the turns and would be exploited daily! This is not what I needed, nor what I was looking for. My mind had been made at that very point. That bike would get me into way too much trouble, and it finally dawned on me that the KTM 950ADV WAS THE BIKE FOR ME! Rolling with knobbies daily is limited but it’s that limit I need, plus I wanted to uphold my GravelCrew rally team motto: rally tires daily, just two less for me.

    So the KTM search continued. Started looking the used route and hit the papers. Found a guy selling a bike locally and met up with him. while meeting him he stated that he would be joining a group to ride to MotoGP. he also said of the seven bikes he owns, this is the one he wanted to ride up! He said he would be willing to take a bit off the price if I waited... I COULD NOT WAIT! With a statement like that, I had to have one of these bikes!!!
    Z-Racing was advertising a used bike. I called and asked straight out, “why should I buy from you?” The man said “SERVICE!” July 13th, 2006 I boogied over to Z-Racing then in Anaheim [Z-Racing’s new address: 608 w. Katella Ave., Orange, CA 92867 www.zracinginc.com] and caressed a used 2005 950ADV and jumped ON IT!!! The bike had 2,400 miles on the clock, but they went ahead and performed the 3K service and it already had it’s first set of fresh knobbies! Mark Zoller, Z-Racing’s owner and Tim, Z-Racing’s manager are totally cool, down to earth and have been working/selling KTM’s for some 20-years! Matt stays on top of the technical updates. Any questions I have had, they have gotten me the info even if it was something they where not familiar with. AND they answer all of my emails!!! So needless to say that I am very happy with my KTM purchase and especially happy with my shop of choice as I know this will play a big roll down the road and very soon as I am driving the bike daily!


    It took a few days to get some images of the bike as I had been so busy riding and not taking the time to stop and shoot. After four trips over Saddleback in the course of basically one week and almost a thousand miles, yea, it was time to stop and snap a few.
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    First major modification:
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    Rear tire deconstruction! But I guess tires don't count as they are in constant rotation.
    #1
  2. aurel

    aurel Cheese&Wine!

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2006
    Oddometer:
    3,775
    Location:
    Toulouse, France
    Try TKC80 :thumb Karoo disappears like snow under the sun :eek1
    #2
  3. GCRad1

    GCRad1 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2006
    Oddometer:
    525
    Location:
    costa mesa, ca., usa, earth, sector-28
    Knobbies, what can i say... knobbies are just awesome and the noise the make while rolling down the road is just as cool as the sound of the exhaust note! It's a statement, a statment that you are ready at any time for any situation that may involve some dirt rally action! I loved rally tires on my cars, i love knobbies for my bikes! I will try to keep track of the tires I use and some notes about what i think about them and anything else that may come to mind. This will bring you up me up to current status as I have kept track of this info from the purchase of the bike.


    TIRE SIZE:
    Rear: 140-80/18

    In order of used and mileage:

    July 2006 - 2,400 bike mile mark [as purchased]
    Rear Tire #1: Metzeler MCE Karoo - came with the bike.
    MILES on this tire:aprox: 1,750 miles?
    The previous owner placed the Metzeler on the bike and I have no idea when he had done so, so no real data here. Plus, this being my first 950ADV - i wasted that tire fast!
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    Left: Continental Twinduro TKC 80 July
    Right: Metzeler MCE Karoo

    July 2006 - 3,941 bike mile mark:
    Rear Tire #2: Continental Twinduro TKC 80
    MILES on this tire: 3,624
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    Continental Twinduro TKC 80 [on rim] replaces the Metzeler MCE Karoo [on it's way out!].

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    Continental Twinduro TKC 80 is about shot at this point. OK, not about, it's done! Had good traction on the street, predictable in the dirt, but you could say this was my first real dualsport tire and my first real full use.

    October 2006 - 7,565 bike mile mark:
    Rear Tire #3: Pirelli RallyCross MT21 M70R
    MILES on this tire: 3,083
    Pirelli RallyCross MT21 M70R [seen below] replaces the Continental Twinduro TKC 80. Purchased at Cycle City in Irvine. It was Friday and had my first trip to Big Bear planned and needed some fresh knobbies and the Conti had seen it's fair share of the road and dirt abuse. The Pirelli as compaired to the Continental, is a noiser tire while driving on the tarmac. I think this may be due to the smaller block pattern, but in the loose dirt it seems to have better bite.
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    AHHHH!!! Fresh knobbies on the back!!!!

    AHHHHH!!! Not so fresh knobbies!!!!
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    The Metzeler MCE Karoo has been on the front since the beginning! So that makes 7,550 bike miles it has lived so far, but has been a sketchy ride the last few times out in the dirt.

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    The rear tire #3 Pirelli Perelli RallyCross MT21 M70R at the 8,777 bike mile mark, so that makes for about 1,212 miles on this tire so far. Two trips to the dirt so far with both dirt portions around 95 miles worth each. Note the fractures at the base of the knob.

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    I have over 9,000 miles on the bike now, so that puts this rear tire #3 Pirelli MT21at about 1,500 miles on it so far.

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    Can you say, DING! I know when and where I did this... up on that Santa Ana Mountain as I was doing the hustle up the back side and thought the rim would be taco'ed! I hit this out-cropped rock that was in the shadows of a rocky section and I was doing about 35mph. Woody!!!!

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    10,000 bike mile mark:This rear tire #3 Pirelli RallyCross MT21 M70R has made it 2,435 miles. Not a lot of miles, but very abused. The Perelli is DONE!!! I will squeeze a few more miles commuting to work as I am looking for my next purchase! Dunlop or Michelin


    March 2007 - 10,648 bike mile mark:
    Rear Tire #4: Pirelli RallyCross MT21 M70R
    Front: Perelli RallyCross
    MILES on this tire:
    The Pirelli RallyCross MT21 M70R replaces the previous Pirelli RallyCross MT21 M70R. I want to get either the Dunlop 908 or the Michelin, but the simple fact it that I have waited too late to order either of these tires. The Pirelli with it's smaller blocks and looking more like a traditional MX tires seems to hook up better in the loose to looser stuff, but our terrian has rocks mixed with the loose and the small knobs take a beating, to the point that they look like they are getting ripped from the carcus of the tire. These big dualsports bikes need something more aggressive and can withstand the freeway at the same time. Again, I have a couple of more tires to experiment with.
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    Cycle City doing the dismount / mounting.

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    My second fresh Pirelli RallyCross MT21 M70R making
    it's debut as rear tire number 4.

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    Perelli RallyCross on the front.

    One Day on the Santa Ana Mountains / Saddleback loop 112 miles:
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    Pirelli RallyCross MT21 M70R

    July 4th: current status of the Pirelli RallyCross MT21 M70R:
    http://youtube.com/watch?v=eqHuzu1SFQo
    #3
  4. GCRad1

    GCRad1 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2006
    Oddometer:
    525
    Location:
    costa mesa, ca., usa, earth, sector-28
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    I like to stand up when riding in the dirt, and even with my short 30" inseam / 5'10" height, I need the bars up higher! While my mission is to someday put the SCOTT dampener and BRP trippleclamp on here, I needed something right away, affordable and simple.

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    The Stenhouse setup seems to be the tallest on the market at 30mm, so I thought I would give them a try.

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    I was a little upset at the fact that these where not metric bolts. Plus, the heads of the bolts are shaved down so the bars will fit back into the clamp so you have to be very carefull to not slip or strip the hex head bolts.

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    The stock bolts are 8mm / Stenhouse bolts are 5/16th.

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    First, remove the top portion from the bar clamp and remove the two bolts under the handlebar.

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    Used a long socket extension to push the rubber bushings out the bottom.

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    These are the stock bolts, washers, nuts and rubber bushing you will remove.

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    The trick is, you are going to put the back washer and nut way up there under the stock tripple clamp.

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    I took the stock bushing and placed it on a long socket extension so I could push it up into place.

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    Used a long screwdriver to hold the bushing up in place so I could pull the extension out without pulling the bushing out.

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    Put some loctite on the nut so it would hold the washer in place.


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    Placed the risers in place and dropped the Stenhouse bolts through.

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    Took the long socket extension and pushed the nut and washer up to meet the bolt. It was aqward working from both side as getting the nut/washer up from the bottom is the tricky part, but if you have the long extension, you can do it by yourself.

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    Placed the bars back into the clamp. Checked wires and cables to make sure nothing was binding or getting penched.

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    Little locktite on the top clamp bolts.

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    Wha-Lha!! Finished!

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    Bought these Bleeder Valves to help relieve the pressure of the forks, help save the seals.

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    Just remove the little phillips bolt from the top of the shock. Be careful as you may have pressure built up when you remove these.

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    It's a good habit to form, pushing the valve to release the pressure after every ride. I will even sometimes give them a little tap while out on the ride when I stop.


    I have already lost one of the little black booty covers. I would suggest going with the Motion Pro Bleeders Valves as available from KTMtwins.com
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    http://www.ktmtwins.com/950adventure/151129.html
    #4
  5. GCRad1

    GCRad1 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2006
    Oddometer:
    525
    Location:
    costa mesa, ca., usa, earth, sector-28
    I added the KTM factory Engine Guards:
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    Fastway Foot pegs or foot beds if you will. MASSIVE IMPROVEMENT!!

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    I've used them, they work!
    #5
  6. GCRad1

    GCRad1 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2006
    Oddometer:
    525
    Location:
    costa mesa, ca., usa, earth, sector-28
    [​IMG]
    I actually got a rock over the top and in between the screen and the radiator! That could have been bad. So I am going to see about adding something to the top to keep rocks from dropping down in between.
    #6
  7. GCRad1

    GCRad1 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2006
    Oddometer:
    525
    Location:
    costa mesa, ca., usa, earth, sector-28
    Goodies in the mail
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    While the dash is plastic, under is nice metal structure that I swear Tourtech and KTM plotted as there are factory mounting locations. Sorry I did not shoot any tech on this one, but their instructions where straight forward.
    #7
  8. jerdog53

    jerdog53 Crop Dusting Everywhere

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2007
    Oddometer:
    8,231
    Location:
    36604
    Your pretty handy with that camera! :thumbup Keep it up and keep em comming!
    #8
  9. RXV_Poor

    RXV_Poor Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2006
    Oddometer:
    447
    Location:
    Jackson, CA
    Nice report.:clap
    #9
  10. NothingClever

    NothingClever Dirt Winger

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2006
    Oddometer:
    1,115
    Location:
    Colorado & Colombia
    Welcome to the Crush and congrats on your good taste in bikes.

    With reference to your video, I think Flanny has set the bar so high that only Yogoi's YouTube videos riding the 950 like a raped ape are going to achieve any additional video stardom in the Crush for awhile. Looking at your chunked out tire going around and 'round just doesn't quite get it, for me anyways.

    The still shots with write-up are great, though. Keep it up :thumb .

    Jus' sayin'.........kinda tough crowd to try to break out a new Orange Crush video act.
    #10
  11. GCRad1

    GCRad1 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2006
    Oddometer:
    525
    Location:
    costa mesa, ca., usa, earth, sector-28
    yea, i hear ya! Those Canada'kats got mad time, mad skill, mad mad mad... i'll save the effort and stick with the fotos for a while.
    #11
  12. GCRad1

    GCRad1 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2006
    Oddometer:
    525
    Location:
    costa mesa, ca., usa, earth, sector-28
    Getting a little ahead of myself in keeping this report in order, so consider this a little teaser as to what is to come.

    Got these in today:
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    Picked up the BRP Tripple clamp and risers, Pro Taper Evo - Henry/Reed Bend and going to try some of the Spider M1 Offroad grips. All of this product was purchased from BRP as they carry so much more! Looks like I will be doing some more shopping with them!!! check'em out at www.brpit.com

    And these FMF Q-Series exhaust:
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    I should be mounting up all this stuff, but instead, I am getting 10 of these ready for MotoGP-Laguna Seca:
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    http://www.hpiracing.com/news/2007072601.html
    #12
  13. GCRad1

    GCRad1 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2006
    Oddometer:
    525
    Location:
    costa mesa, ca., usa, earth, sector-28
    Got the package!
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    Man, was I happy to see these two boxes tapped together and actually sitting in the garage!!! It only took four months for these puppies to arrive... AFTER ROUND ONE...

    So, with all my excitement, I got busy!
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    Knocked off the stock boat anchors and...

    Pulled the new puppies from the packaging....
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    And noticed something was... was just not quite right...
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    WRONG!!!!

    All the air was let out of the sail... so what else can you do? Do the general maintenance items, like replace the battery.
    #13
  14. GCRad1

    GCRad1 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2006
    Oddometer:
    525
    Location:
    costa mesa, ca., usa, earth, sector-28
    I guess most of you 950ADV enthusiast know the stock battery just gives out after a while. Since I could not be working on any of the cool stuff, needed to do some simple stuff - like replace the battery. How did I determine I needed to do this? Well, got happy and left my key in, ignition on at work one morning. Went to go home - battery dead! Dead - DEAD!!!
    OK, fair warning - JUMP STARTING IS IMPOSSIBLE!!! No compression release like on my XR400. Tried to bump start the 950ADV on the hill... second, third and fourth gear!!! Luckly a buddy had some jumper-cables! Note to self, if ever on the big trip, make sure to pack some jumper cables!

    Found this thread while doing the normal research:
    Replacement Battery Options:
    http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=119297&highlight=ytz14s

    Found my replacment:
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    Purchased from here:
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    Great service and got my battery in like two days!!!
    #14
  15. Pete156

    Pete156 I love to eat!

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2006
    Oddometer:
    1,439
    Location:
    Everett,WA
    GCRad1

    A couple of comments, and a question.
    The bike will bump start just fine if the battery has enough juice.
    The bleeder valves will malfunction and cause you problems at some point.
    Why haven't you tried Rally Raids yet? I think you'll like them.

    PETE
    #15
  16. DockingPilot

    DockingPilot Hooked Up and Hard Over

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2004
    Oddometer:
    11,469
    Location:
    Andover, N.J.
    why will the bleeder valves malfunction ?
    #16
  17. Pete156

    Pete156 I love to eat!

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2006
    Oddometer:
    1,439
    Location:
    Everett,WA
    They'll eventually stick in the open position, not a good thing at all. Many riders including myself have had this problem. The screw works just fine.
    #17
  18. DockingPilot

    DockingPilot Hooked Up and Hard Over

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2004
    Oddometer:
    11,469
    Location:
    Andover, N.J.
    I ask because I just installed a set of Pro-Motions yesterday
    #18
  19. motowest

    motowest Two-wheeled Adventurer

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2005
    Oddometer:
    1,484
    Location:
    Santa Cruz, CA
    Nice write-up. It's good to hear what others have experienced regarding upgrades/mods.
    #19
  20. O.C.F.RIDER

    O.C.F.RIDER Loose nut behind h/bars

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2004
    Oddometer:
    5,257
    Location:
    Hewitt,New Jerseystan
    I've had the bleeder valves on mine for at least 2 years and never had a problem:dunno .
    Once again, just lucky I guess.
    Rally On!!
    Chris
    #20