New Katoom!

Discussion in 'Dakar champion (950/990)' started by Lil' Irv, Jun 4, 2004.

  1. Lil' Irv

    Lil' Irv I can't shuddup

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2004
    Oddometer:
    609
    Location:
    Lost
    Hi guys (gals too),

    I've been lurking around ADVrider for a while and haven't had a lot to say until now:

    WOW! What a blast! I love my new 950!:thumb :thumb :thumb

    A couple of Saturdays ago I went out looking for a nice used 650 Dual Sport to use for beatin' around the dirt roads near home. 4 dealers and I only found an '02 KLR 650. A little too new and the dealer is Sport Wheels which is a motorcycle salvage yard and you never know the history of bikes found here.

    Anyway at the last place they have nothing, but as I'm headed for the door the guy says they do have a new 950 Adventure out back. Not in the market for new but I'd heard about KTM's new monster and had thought I should look at these before buying my dream bike (GS) in a couple of years. So I go back, take a look, sit on it a couple of times, drip on it once or twice and I am smitten! The dealer can't tell me much about it since it is the only one they have and know nothing about the 950. I get a brochure and a price (list) from them and hit the road.

    Over the course of the next week I obsess over the thing, read everything I can find on the bike (including all the threads here) and run the numbers round and round in my head trying to figure out where to pretend the money will come from. By Thursday I concede that I'll just have to be satisfied with an old 650 of some sort.

    Thursday evening the subject comes up at dinner and the wife says "you really should get the bike you want"! BINGO!!! GREEN LIGHT!!! STAND BACK!!!

    Friday morning 10:01am I start calling KTM dealers around the Minneapolis/St. Paul area. I'm not really interested in the Silver one that I saw but really like the color scheme of the S model with the GO!!!!! painted up the side. I don't really expect to find one of these and figure I'd settle for an ORANGE.

    The only other one I find in the area is a BLACK which won't look good with mud and dirt on it so I expand the search. At 10:30 I get hold of Brandon at Fun Mart Cycle Center in Moline, IL. Ask him what he has in KTM 950's. Well he's got a Black one and an Orange one. Oh yeah, also got a Blue and Orange one. S model I ask? Says GO!!!!! up the side? Yeah, that’s the one he says. Suddenly I'm wet... How much? $11,000 he says. New? Yup.

    I'll take it! Time 10:34.

    Six hour drive to Moline, gotta get a cashiers check and run home first. Shit - dropped the truck off for service this morning! Call the shop, it'll be done in a half hour. Good news! Pick up the truck, stop at the bank and fly home. I'm out the door again at 12:05.

    Flick on the GPS and tell it to navigate to Moline. It says I'll arrive at 5:15 but that doesn't account for any stops and it's sending me on about 150 miles of two-lane US highways through towns and all so it'll be tight time wise. I elect to travel some county back roads through Iowa where there's no traffic and few towns. The trip is uneventful with the only heavy traffic on I-380 from Cedar Rapids down to I-80. Not bad for Friday on Memorial Day weekend.

    I arrive at Fun Mart at 5:55pm. Whew! We do the paperwork, go over the bike with the tech, do a little test drive and load it up. Tim and his crew treated me great and were happy to stay late rather than rush me out. Everybody at the dealership seemed to be having a good time doing what they were doing and never made me feel like I was imposing by keeping them late - not like many of the dealers around here. Highly recommended!

    Old fat guy with new toy:

    [​IMG]

    Back on the road at 7:00 with the new hot thing in the back. Now I can relax – nobody’s gonna say “Sorry, we made a mistake and can’t sell you the bike”. Now I have it, it’s mine and you ain’t gettin’ it back! I stop for a quick bite to eat at the Wendy’s and settle in for the leisurely trip home. Traffic is light and here and there I run into rain showers. About 11:00, on one of my back roads, the radar detector starts screaming. Fortunately I’m only going a little over 55 and he keeps going. I arrive home at 1:55am, leave the bike in the truck since it’s raining and hit the hay.

    Made pretty good time. Must’ve been in rally mode:

    [​IMG]

    I crawl out of bed about 9:30 and check to see that the bike is still in the truck. It is, so we make breakfast and I do my Saturday morning chores (like sifting for buried treasure in the cat boxes) and head out to unload the bike.

    Bike unloaded I wipe it down as it sat in the rain all night. God, it’s pretty! Even my wife thinks the bike is gorgeous. I don’t know how I hooked this girl, but I ain’t giving her up!

    Still a virgin:

    [​IMG]

    Say hello to the rest of the team (RT is afraid to look):

    [​IMG]

    Anyway I head into town to the license center to get the bike registered and get a set of plates. They’re closed Saturdays so I won’t be getting any plates ‘til Tuesday, at least.

    Back home I set about hanging the “License Applied For” tag that they gave me at the dealer even though nothing was applied for since I was a non-resident. I’ll throw the bill of sale in the storage compartment and take my chances. This bike ain’t gonna sit around until Tuesday for lack of a license!

    About 1:00pm I’m ready to head out. Everything is wet since it’s been raining for about 12 days straight now, so the bike’s gonna get dirty, no doubt about it.

    First mud hole – not even out of the driveway yet:

    [​IMG]

    I get out on the road and hit a few miles of pavement just to get the feel of the bike. It’s big, tall, comfy and handles pretty darn well. Seems to make some good power even though I’m trying to baby it. After a few miles on the pavement we start hitting some gravel roads. Wow! This is fun! Pretty soon we’re blasting down the gravel doin’ about 70ish. Very comfortable at this speed, it pulls back and forth a little in the soft stuff but all in all pretty darn stable. Pretty soon we’re rippin’ around corners spraying gravel all over the place and just generally being obnoxious. Gotta remind myself too go easy on it as there’s only about 15 miles on the clock.

    We end up down by the Minnesota River near Henderson and spot a sign that says “Minimum Maintenance Road, Travel at Your Own Risk”. Gotta go there! I hit the binders and turn in. With all the rain the road is nothing but water holes. I go in a couple of miles and am getting tired out from wrestling this heavy beast around in the mud. I decide to turn around and find that even with a 34” inseam it’s difficult to push the thing backwards when sitting on top of it on muddy ground. I find the best strategy is to pull up onto a little rise and let gravity help roll it back. Ok, so maybe this bike isn’t ideally suited to this environment but it will go there if you want to.

    [​IMG]

    Back on regular dirt roads is a lot more fun than the slippery stuff. This is what I wanted the bike for – rippin’ around the dirt roads near home and the ability to ride it across the country and rip up some of your back roads once I get there. I can tell already that the seat will have to change before we do any 12-hour days.

    No longer a virgin:


    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Can’t wait to get out and do a few trips with this bike, maybe some camping in Northern Minnesota. Lot’s of great forest roads up there. I’m supposed to be getting the free hard bags from KTM but dealer says don’t expect them for at least 3 months. I guess we’ll just be piling it on the back until then.

    As far as mods go there probably won’t be too many. The bike has plenty enough power to get me in trouble as it is so I’ll probably leave the motor alone unless I run into some reliability issues. New seat definitely. GPS and radar detector, of course. Maybe some big lights and a fuel cell if I decide to use it for endurance rallies but right now the RT is pretty well set up for that and probably more comfortable for 20+ hours in the saddle.

    Thanks to ADVRider and everybody in the Katoom forum! It’s a great resource and a great place for sharing experiences and information. It’s obvious that many of you know a great deal about these bikes. I hope that I can contribute.

    Regards,

    Lil’ Irv
    #1
  2. Rad

    Rad Done riding

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2001
    Oddometer:
    12,174
    Welcome ADV

    I loved the pics but did not read yur text 'cause the black font is hard to see on my screen.

    Have fun here and on that new scoot :thumb
    #2
  3. 02Silver

    02Silver Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2004
    Oddometer:
    242
    Location:
    Port Lavaca Texas
    Congrats to you Irv.

    I bought a 02 KLR650 last week, I agree that they are difficult to find in suitable age, mileage, and condition. I want the 625SXC and really did like the 950 when I sat on it but I really want to ride one. Overall I'm happy with the choice for now but the brakes and HP leave a lot to be desired so far. Acceptable but not desirable and that's with Galfer lines and a Big Gun Race/Dynojet set up respectively. I've been waiting to give aride report after I ride it 500 miles or so...nearly 300 so far.

    Anyway what I'm really saying is that I took the path you started to take and I'll try to remember to let you know how long it lasts...getting to appreciate it more and more BTW.


    Rad and Ranger,

    You need to highlight these dark fonts, like you would for a cut and paste and it'll save your eyeballs. (Left Click and Drag on the mouse)

    Richard
    #3
  4. Rad

    Rad Done riding

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2001
    Oddometer:
    12,174
    Great idea, but it ain't gonna happen :lol3
    #4
  5. fish

    fish Banned

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2001
    Oddometer:
    47,727
    Location:
    Gold Country
    Hey lil' irv...congrats on the new bike and welcome to the asylum. I stripped out (or tried to, anyway) all of the color formatting. Did you write that up in word or something? There's font, size, and color formatting in every damn paragraph. :arg Really not necessary.

    Hope you have many many happy miles on your new KTM. Looks like you live in an area that will keep a fresh patina of dirt on it at all times.
    #5
  6. Jean-Luc

    Jean-Luc Throttle committed

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2001
    Oddometer:
    2,259
    Location:
    San Francisco, USA
    For a first post that was a long and great one :thumb

    The 950 does that to you :jive
    #6
  7. darmahman

    darmahman "Illogically Deluded" Supporter

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2003
    Oddometer:
    4,138
    Location:
    Fort Collins, CO
    Lil' Irv - Give yourself some time with the stock seat. I am old and fat like you :lol3 but w/in 1000 miles I forgot I had an uncomfortable seat and with 2000 miles on it it doesn't bother me at all.
    #7
  8. Lil' Irv

    Lil' Irv I can't shuddup

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2004
    Oddometer:
    609
    Location:
    Lost
    Sorry about the text color. Your'e right Fish, I did write it in word and then cut and pasted the text and then added the pics. I thought I pasted as unformatted text but obviously not...

    Anyway I tried editing it and changed the color to white, black, even grey but nothing shows up well in all skins. What am I doing wrong or is it the formatting from Word?

    Irv
    #8
  9. woodsrider

    woodsrider .........................

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2003
    Oddometer:
    587
    Location:
    Colorful Colorado
    Nice writeup and great pics! Thanks for the post!
    #9
  10. fish

    fish Banned

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2001
    Oddometer:
    47,727
    Location:
    Gold Country

    Irv, white shows up best in all skins. For the waxy skin, white is changed to black.
    #10
  11. Baldy

    Baldy Founder of ADV Administrator

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2001
    Oddometer:
    10,940
    Location:
    Silicon Valley, CA
    Great post. I cleaned up the mess Microsoft Word made to the formatting and left the font default color. Have I ever mentioned how schlocky Microsoft products are becoming?
    #11
  12. Lil' Irv

    Lil' Irv I can't shuddup

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2004
    Oddometer:
    609
    Location:
    Lost
    Thanks for the tips guys! Don't worry fast learner...

    I'm heading up to Duluth in the morning to spectate at the 4th round of the World Trials Championship. Should be awesome! I'll try to post pics first part of the week.

    Better get my arse in gear and get stuff ready - have a great weekend!

    Irv
    #12
  13. k7

    k7 Almost retired....tick..tick..tick..

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2002
    Oddometer:
    25,089
    Location:
    Aridzona
    Woohoo.... let's hear it for the OFG's on 950's!!!!!!!!!
    #13
  14. Lone Ranger

    Lone Ranger Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2004
    Oddometer:
    128
    Location:
    San Diego
    Irv, welcome. You've got a great bike and a greater wife. Good write up, thanks for changing the color. You got a good price. I just paid the same price for a standard Orange 950. I really like the S but with a 30" inseam it wasn't do-able.
    #14