Making it my own....
They say KTM's are race-ready, right out of the crate. Well, hogwash I say. This is only true if you don't mind replacing
banged up parts every couple of races. Here are a few necessities for my kind of racing.
Pipe guard and skid plate: must have'em both. The pipe
guard is an
Eline carbon fiber protector which is very strong
and light. The skid plate comes from
Enduro Engineering.
KTM did a great job with the water pump, placing it well out
of trouble.
Next up: radiator protection. I
chose Enduro Engineering's
guards because of the way they
protect from side impacts.
That's where most of the
beatings take place on
radiators, and Enduro
Engineering has got it covered.
The guards retain the stock
radiator louvers.
Here's something you don't want to see. That's the
broken end of a tap inside one of the radiator
mounting holes. The Enduro Engineering guards
require the radiators to be removed in order to install
them. KTM's threading of the radiator mount holes
bordered on pathetic. The bolts would not thread back
in properly, which is why I decided to clean them up
with the tap. Apparently when the tap met the frame
(this is a blind hole), the frame won out.
Once I ground out the broken tap with a Dremel tool (and a very
hard coated grinding bit), I went straight for the Heli-coil on both
of the mounting holes on that side of the frame (the other side
was much better).
Here's another interesting product I tried for the first time:
threaded inserts for hand guards. The inside ends of the
handlebars are tapped and the silver thingies are threaded into
the bar ends. The inserts came from
Emig Racing, which also
supplied the handlebar top clamp for the Scotts Steering
Damper and the bolt-on steering damper tower.
The supplied tap cuts fairly easily through aluminum
bars. A little red Loctite keeps the insert in place. For
the past 10 years or so I'd used hand guard mounts
that bolted directly to the top triple clamp. I usually had
to buy a new top triple clamp, however, because most
stock triple clamps these days are not made to accept
clamp-mounted brackets for the hand guards. I didn't
really mind, though, because usually the aftermarket
triple clamps were of better quality than the stockers.
But KTM put some nice ones on the 250EXC and I saw
no need to toss aside the clamps just because I
wanted hand guards that never rotate around the bars
after a crash. The threaded inserts are said to greatly
reduce these hand guard rotations by keeping the
guards firmly planted to the handlebars. They've
worked as well as advertised.
Enduro Engineering clutch slave cylinder guard. These types of
guards have been part of every KTM I've owned. Enduro
Engineering made them just a little better by including a metal
piece that runs above the countershaft sprocket. No mud
buildup from the stock plastic guard - that's a good thing.
And of course, no bike of mine would be complete
without a
Scotts steering damper. I can't count the
number of times these things have save me from pain.
I decided to go with a bolt-on tower this time. Never had much
luck with these on past bikes, but this one, from Emig Racing,
was much better. It did come loose once, but it does stay put
fairly well.
The handlebar clamp is also from Emig Racing. It
comes with four different sets of damper mounting
holes for various bar clamp positions.
The Scotts shark fin rear brake rotor protector. It's the best
there is. Period.
Stay tuned...there will be more!