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4000 miles on a KTM 950


Whip

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After over 4000 miles in 10 days I think I can give a reasonable report on the 2006 KTM 950 Adventure. Most of the miles were done two up. I did get a chance to ride highway 12 to Burr Trail while Louise did laundry. I don't think I can make this a KTM vs GS comparison because I really didn't get a chance to put a lot of miles on my GS and it was an Adventure which makes it a much bigger monster than the KTM and therefore not a fair rival in my opinion.

 

I think it's only fair to tell about the upgrades I did to the KTM before I start talking about it.

 

I changed the wheels from 21 and 18 with tubes to 19 and 17 tubeless. I felt this would make the bike handle better on the highway and give me many more tire choices, not to mention the advantages of going tubeless when traveling.

 

I had all the emission stuff removed and I replaced the stock exhaust (with the catalytic converters built in) with Remus cans.

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I added a Renazco seat.

 

Zumo

 

Corbin 15 inch shield.

 

4 power outlets

 

Some carbon heat shield for the passenger.

 

Radiator guard.

 

Engine guards

 

Gobi Bags

 

KTM tank bag

 

V1/Escort.

 

Maybe a few other things....

 

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So first I'd like to say Louise told me it was the most comfortable trip we have ever had. She loves her riding position and she has no trouble getting off and on the bike. Thanks to Fernando and autocom our units worked flawlessly for the first time ever. She says she not buffeted around by the wind like she is on the FJR/RT or even the Road Glide.

 

The bike seems to vibrate less than all the other bikes except the FJR.

 

The transmission, clutch, and the rest of the drive train work together better than any bike I have ever ridden. Instead of a clunk between gears it's more like a click.

 

The suspension is very good. It has many adjustments and it didn't take long for me to get it dialed in.

 

The handling of the bike is very good. With Louise on the back I managed to touch the left bag down with Kaneman following me. I really had no idea what it was. Who woulda thought the bags would touch before the peg. Anyway I tightened up the suspension a little and used a bit more body english the rest of the trip. Still a very interesting feeling.

 

The brakes are not as firm as I am use to, but as Denny(Tool) said they never felt like they weren't gonna stop, the lever just travels a little further than I thought it would.

 

We did 4 days over 600 miles and 1 day over 700. The gas tank range is an issue. At lower elevations I think you can go 200 miles. In Torrey and most of Colorado I thought about 180 miles was max.

 

The riding position for me was very comfortable. I could relax and feel like I was in a good position to control the bike at any time.

 

I liked the two gas fillers. You don't have to mess with the tank bag to fill up.

 

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The wind protection was limited to just my head area, my shoulders and arms were gonna get wet....and did when I got to Kerrville.

 

We did use your Widder vests leaving Torrey and the bike seemed to handle the additional electrical drain just fine.

 

My legs had plenty of room and the engine guards will make a nice place for some highway pegs.......anyone ever put highway pegs on a KTM????????....LOL

 

I thought not having a fuel gage nor gear indicator would bother me, but after about 300 miles I didn't notice.

 

The side-stand had to be cut and re-welded after I put the smaller tires on it and it still maybe a bit too tall.

 

I have ordered larger tanks for it and I sure hope they get here before we leave for Alaska. Otherwise I'm gonna have to strap some gas cans on it somewhere.

 

Did I mention how much I love the way it sounds???????.....WOW!!!!

 

I would like to be able to review it's off road abilities, but I'm really not qualified. I enjoyed myself in the dirt and I want to do more. I just think I need some more practice.

 

I put V rated Anakee tires on it and was pleasantly surprised at how good they felt when hoonin. Every bit as good as the FJR with Avons or Pilot Roads.

 

Around town I think the KTM is a very underated city hooligan bike. It has plenty of power, it's very narrow for lane splitting and can jump curbs and go through the neighbors front yard or backyard without a second thought.

 

I think I'm gonna like this bike.

 

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Any questions????????

 

Ask away.

 

 

Oh it cost $10,500(new)....before I started throwin money at it....now I don't want to talk about...LOL.

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Firefight911

Hmmmm, I could use a new bike . . . .

 

 

NOT!!!!!

 

Glad that it seems that you AND Louise have found what you were looking for to take you to Alaska.

 

Wave rotors stock? Nice.

 

Looking forward to hooning with you soon! thumbsup.gif

 

Congrats! wave.gif

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I forgot about the waves...they were extra.

 

I wanted a complete set of extra wheels and they cost about the same as replacements.

 

Whip

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Thanks for the report. How did you seal the spokes when you went tubeless?

 

Chris

 

You have two options....you can get the BMW wheels from Aprilia and the hubs from KTM.(I hear the patten is about to run out)

 

Or you can order them from Woody in Denver and he treats the inside of the wheels with some kind of silicon and tape that seems to work real good.

 

www.woodyswheelworks.com

 

 

Whip

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roadscholar

Nice report Whip, you've turned it into a great adventure tourer, look forward to more of your experience with it.

 

The more you go off road with it, the more comfortable it will become. It's a little heavy for dirt but the suspension and motor almost overcome that.

 

Can't remember if I told you, but when riding behind you I could hear your bike over the one I was riding, and it sounded real good.

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Calvin  (no socks)

Whip, Great report...The exhaust tone did me in.... I had a blast on it... for the few miles I rode it. I went to the KTM dealer in Jacksonville yesterday... Something is in the works....

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You have two options....you can get the BMW wheels from Aprilia and the hubs from KTM.(I hear the patten is about to run out)

 

Or you can order them from Woody in Denver and he treats the inside of the wheels with some kind of silicon and tape that seems to work real good.

 

www.woodyswheelworks.com

Whip

 

Thanks.

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Any questions???????? Ask away.

 

- those Gobi bags look spacious.

 

- wonder if some small re-gearing would help the gas mileage w/o hurting the rpms too much?

 

Oh it cost $10,500(new)....before I started throwin money at it....now I don't want to talk about...LOL.

 

- Humm, I'm thinking, I got this spare kidney I'm not using all that much and ........

 

- ebill

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The KTM was a kick to ride, best drive train I have ever experienced, truly awesome engine and tranny. With even fewer qualified dealers than BMW, I hope that never becomes an issue on the road.

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Jim VonBaden

So you turned it into an expensive V-strom? dopeslap.gif

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

peepwall.gif

 

Jim cool.gif

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So you turned it into an expensive V-strom? dopeslap.gif

 

 

I think the V-Strom is a great bike.....but I would have to say the GS is much closer to a V-Strom than the KTM.

 

 

Hey Flyin-one.

 

If you have to count on dealers.....your in trouble.

 

Whip

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FlyingFinn

Whip, nice KTM!

 

I really like those black Excel rims with stout spokes, and to make them run tubeless is an icing on the cake.

 

How is the rear Anakee holding up?

 

--

Mikko

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Hey Flyin-one.

 

If you have to count on dealers.....your in trouble.

My point exactly. I hope none of us ever do, but then shit happens..................... dopeslap.gif

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If you have to count on dealers.....your in trouble.

 

Whip

 

Whip! Dang, I didn't get a chance to really visit with you in Torrey re: the new bike and what happened to the GSA....

 

KTM dealers don't seem to be that much of an issue up here in the Dirt Country. We have a dealer in Riverton (25 miles away) and a BIG one in Rock Springs (120 miles). I know there's also one in Laramie (220 miles) that's been in business for 25+ years selling Katooms. I see a tremendous number of KTM dirt bikes around here, and have been shopping for a 450 EXC for myself; wonderful machines!

 

When is your Alaska trip going to happen? Will you be routing through this area??

 

Take care, glad you AND Louise like the ride! It was great to finally meet Louise!

 

Doug

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Sweet!

 

But, the most important things are:

 

... Louise told me it was the most comfortable trip we have ever had.

 

and

 

I think I'm gonna like this bike.

 

thumbsup.gif

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Whip, nice KTM!

 

I really like those black Excel rims with stout spokes, and to make them run tubeless is an icing on the cake.

 

How is the rear Anakee holding up?

 

--

Mikko

 

 

Funny you should mention that......It was flat yesterday mornin.

 

Maybe a little yellow birdy told you of my plug work.

 

Lots of rubber still on it. At least 2000 more miles.

 

BTW.....Thanks for helping Kaneman out with his Strom.

 

Whip

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Nice pictures. Seems like it will be a great bike for you.

 

I was wondering if the front fender has any adjustment if you start building up mud on the front tire? or is your only option to remove the fender?

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Nice pictures. Seems like it will be a great bike for you.

 

I was wondering if the front fender has any adjustment if you start building up mud on the front tire? or is your only option to remove the fender?

 

The fender has four small bolts in the front you have to remove to lift the fender and clean out the mud.

 

You can also buy an after market bigger/higher fender if you so choose.

 

Whip

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Jim VonBaden
So you turned it into an expensive V-strom? dopeslap.gif

 

 

I think the V-Strom is a great bike.....but I would have to say the GS is much closer to a V-Strom than the KTM.

 

 

Hey Flyin-one.

 

If you have to count on dealers.....your in trouble.

 

Whip

 

You missed the point. You took all the assetts that KTM has going for it as a premium off road vehicle, and made it a street only bike, that even a V-strom 1000 could match.

 

But hey, it is your bike to make your way!

 

Jim cool.gif

 

PS I just hope it is as reliable as a V-strom! grin.gif

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So you turned it into an expensive V-strom? dopeslap.gif

 

 

I think the V-Strom is a great bike.....but I would have to say the GS is much closer to a V-Strom than the KTM.

 

 

Hey Flyin-one.

 

If you have to count on dealers.....your in trouble.

 

Whip

 

You missed the point. You took all the assetts that KTM has going for it as a premium off road vehicle, and made it a street only bike, that even a V-strom 1000 could match.

 

But hey, it is your bike to make your way!

 

Jim cool.gif

 

PS I just hope it is as reliable as a V-strom! grin.gif

 

 

"premium off road vehicle".....now it's a premium on road vehicle as well as off road....maybe you missed the point. grin.gif

 

 

Unless you mean the wheels??????

 

I still have the 21 and 18 with quick release axles......easy to switch.

 

 

Otherwise I don't understand??????????????

 

 

As far as reliable goes....it's already several thousand miles ahead of my 07 GSA.

 

wave.gif

 

 

Have a great Day.

 

Whip

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Whip seeing you on the 950 in Torrey made me wish I had mine there, what a great area. I have had mine in the dirt with the 19/17 wheels and Tourances on and don't notice a big difference from the stockers. I would suggest that you get a damper though. Do you feel that the front end is to soft? Percision Concepts does a great job on the suspension and can take most of the dive out of the front end. My 950 is the most fun bike I have ever had and they do sound great with aftermarket cans!

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