|Note: most of the cheapness here applies mostly to 1998-02 KTM EXC/MXC 250's, 300's, and 380's. I sold my '02
300MXC in 2008 and obviously haven't kept up with the newer models. Who knows, maybe some of this still applies....
|You can get by with about 10 inches shorter. The hex socket on the right is 14mm, for use at the compression
valve cap. The other two came with the Auto Zone set.
|Close-up of the cut-outs. These match up with the
cartridge inside the fork and keep it from turning as
the compression valve cap is tightened or loosened.
|It's a 2-inch PVC male adapter, about $1.50 from Home Depot or Lowes. I
cut it in half and put the two halves around the fork tubes, connected with
duct tape. The smaller-diameter end is just the right size to drive the seals.
Clutch and Front Brake Assemblies
The cheapest, of course, is to use a plethora of zip ties and duct tape to hold the assemblies tight after you break
them. This actually worked when I broke the clutch bracket. Did a whole race with no problem at all (and got 2nd
place to boot). For those of you averse to this kind of economy, you will be happy to know that Dennis Kirk sells
replacement parts for the Magura hydraulic clutch, including the clamp (part number 571176; $14.99 --> didn't
see this part in the new '07 catalog, but it still shows up on the web site). The appearance is the same as the '00-
01 model clutch bracket, kind of a tan-metallic color, but it fits perfectly on the '98-99 models as well. If you go this
route, DON'T use a ratchet to tighten the bolt - nut driver only!
I found a clutch bracket for KTM's made out of billet 6061-T6 aluminum. Very cool. The manufacturer, CNC
Dynamics, claims they are unbreakable. If anyone can put that claim to the test, it's me. Mine sold for about $10
on eBay; not sure what the direct price is. The company's contact information in 2003 was:
CNC Dynamics, Inc. (ask for Dave Daum)
2574 FORTUNE WAY SUITE 2
VISTA, CA 92083
FAX: 760-598-9470 PHONE: 760-802-1616
For the front brake, replacement parts can be found at T.A.W. Vehicle Concepts. These guys quoted $7.50 for the
brake assembly clamp (part number 110.4372.20) and $90 for the whole brake assembly (10.5393.50). They
also have the lever and other parts on both the brake lever assembly and the brake caliper. Take a look around
the site; there's a lot of good information.
Enduro Engineering is now selling most of the replacement parts for the Magura clutch. The clutch master
cylinder clamp part number is 23-006.
Throttle & Cable
A Magura throttle can be made to work if you break your throttle housing like I did. Dennis Kirk sells Magura's
Model 314 throttle. This 77-degree throttle works well for off-road use. The only downside is that you have to drill
out and tap your own threads where the cable comes into the throttle. Pretty easy, though, since the housing is
A throttle cable from a mid-1990's Honda CR250 works very well and is available from Motion Pro for $10-15. It is
a bit longer, which is popular with those of us who run Scotts steering dampers and need more slack to route the
cable around the damper. The end that fits into the carb slide needs to be filed down just a bit, but otherwise it's
An odometer cable from a 1998 Yamaha WR400 replaces the stock cable. KTM gets $42 for their cable, while
the WR400 cable is about $12 through your Yamaha dealer. Plus, the Yamaha cable has metal ends that thread
onto the odometer and the odometer drive, rather than the plastic ends used on the stock cable. Enduro
Engineering also sells a replacement cable for about $16.
Heim Bearing - Lower Shock Pivot
KTM has pretty much priced themselves out of existence for these parts, showing up as $52 in August 2007.
Enduro Engineering is the best bet, with a $30 replacement.
The "Other" Heim Bearing
Take a close look at the back side of the rear brake pedal and you'll see a small heim bearing where the bolt
attaches the brake pedal to the actuating rod. Take a look at the replacement part (546.03.069.000) and you'll find
a $36 list price. This small heim doesn't keep its lubrication very long and eventually develops play, so I was
tempted to replace it until I saw the price tag. Don't worry, there's an alternative. Check out the McMaster-Carr
online industrial catalog and do a search for part number 59935K52. Get the right-hand version, which fits
perfectly and is only $5.73 (as of April 2006).
Other Bearings and Seals
The KTM parts guide lists all the bearing types and the seal measurements. Your local bearing supply shop can
match you up with the same bearings and seals, and probably better quality. For the 608 bearings in the chain
roller and the brake pedal, go to your local skate board/inline skate shop and get a pack of replacement wheel
bearings. The bearings in skate wheels are the same size, but they are usually not the sealed type, so expect to
change them more frequently. Generally, these bearings are about $1 apiece.
Rubber Seal - Pipe/Silencer Junction
When my silencer broke during a race, the rubber piece that fits over the pipe/silencer junction was lost. Instead
of paying $24 for a KTM replacement, I used a 4-inch piece of mountain bike inner tube. It's the perfect diameter,
and you can put a dab of silicone sealer inside each end to keep away the spooge. For a tight fit, use a piece of
new, never-inflated bike tube and a few zip ties.
Homemade Fork Cartridge Holder - 2003 KX250
While the KTM’s WP 43mm fork cartridge was fairly easy to keep from spinning (compression on the fork spring
would usually keep it from moving), the Kawasaki fork cartridge was pretty much impossible to hold still while
tightening or loosening the compression valve cap. Loosening the cap was doable with an impact wrench, but I
don’t like to use an impact driver to tighten such a critical part of the bike. Instead, I built my own cartridge holder
with 1” PVC conduit. It was remarkably easy and cheap.
Get a piece of 1” PVC conduit, about 18 inches long (does not need to be as long as what’s pictured…it was
laying around and close enough in length). Eight-foot (or longer) lengths are just a couple bucks at Home Depot
Using a Dremel tool or equivalent, cut four ¼” slots, spaced evenly (every 90 degrees around the circle). The slots
should be about 3/8” deep. I used a cutting wheel to carve out the slots.
Drill a hole in the opposite end of the pipe, big enough to insert the end of a screwdriver or any other object that
allows you to grip the pipe and keep it from turning.
That’s it. Just stick the pipe down the fork, line it up at the cartridge, hold on to the opposite end with your
screwdriver (or whatever you choose to use), and tighten the compression valve cap to 45 ft-lbs.
Another mini-cheap tip: the 14mm hex/allen head socket you need to loosen or tighten the compression valve
cap can be obtained at Auto Zone. It comes in a set of three ½” drive sockets – 12mm, 14mm, and 17mm. Costs
I tightened it with a 3/8"
ratchet and it held up just
fine...unlike the stock
This one, not sure if it truly falls into the category of cheap, since part of it was bought at some
fancy-pants store in Lincoln Park (Chicago), but when I saw it, I knew my air filter cleaning
problems were solved. The last few years I've finally bucked up and kept an extra air filter on hand
for each bike, oiled and ready to go. This means, of course, that I am usually cleaning two at a
time since I'm lazy and never get around to cleaning each filter as it is dirtied. The upside is that
it's actually a bit more efficient that way - less Bel-Ray, Simple Green and mineral spirits used for
My cleaning procedure is this:
- Soak each filter in mineral spirits (using the same mineral spirits for each filter - efficiency,
- Rinse out the mineral spirits from each filter.
- Soak each filter in Simple Green - I do this because at some point I discovered that while
mineral spirits do an excellent job of removing the dirty oil, they don't get out all the dirt. I
learned this when blowing a clean filter with compressed air (no idea why I was doing that)
and seeing dust flying out. After soaking the filter in Simple Green, I was shocked at how
much fine dirt residue was left in the cleaning bowl. Simple Green takes away the dirt and
leaves the filter smelling like a cool summer breeze or maybe a nursing home.
- Rinse filters and air dry.
- Oil'em up.
So the downside to using a big stainless steel mixing bowl is the crunchy layer of grit left in the
bottom. When it's time to clean the second filter, it always seems like it's picking up the grit left
behind by the first filter. Here's how we remedy this sich-y-aten:
On the left is a standard stainless steel mixing bowl (6 quarts, I believe). On the right, the middle
basket from a 3-piece hanging fruit basket. Why anyone would need to suspend their fruit from the
ceiling or wherever is not entirely clear to me, but all I know is that for $12.99, my bowl-grit problems
are now over. The basket fits perfectly inside the bowl and sits just high enough to clear any dirt
particles floating around at the bottom.
Like I said, not really cheap, but afterwards I
still had two hanging baskets to suspend stuff
from the ceiling (click on picture for a link to the
store where you can buy one...or just steal one
from your married buddy's kitchen).
|Would you clean your filters here? Sure you would...if you weren't married.
|Congratulations! You've found my favorite page.
|Not just for KTM's anymore!