2008 KTM 250 XC

  A while back, after learning that I will never be rich enough to have a Ferrari or a Porsche dedicated race car, I decided I could get a dedicated track motorcycle instead. This would let me preserve the expensive Ducati 848 and the personality rich Ducati ST2 for street duties while the Yamaha R6 Track Bike would be for me to practice road riding in the safe, controlled environment of a closed circuit. Well, I noticed that lots of accomplished track riders (like Valentino Rossi and Marc Marques) spend a lot of time on dirt bikes to hone their bike handling skills. So, I want to be like them. So I bought a dirt bike.

  Click for a Larger Image It started as a 2007 KTM 250 XC, according to the second PO. This is how I got it, on Jan 3, 2016. Its in OK shape, but I bought it in the late afternoon with little light. After some better light and a little time, I found out it needed a lot of work.

  Here it sits on a new orange stand. I have to heft it up there. Not real heavy, but it's very tall. Has a 21" front Michelin, an 18" rear Michelin, Brembo calipers on both ends (single side acting), and a bunch of worn out parts. Click for a Larger Image

  Click for a Larger Image The right side. You can see the rear caliper (single piston), the FMF Gnarly pipe and silencer, and handlebar risers. You may also see the new heim joint on the rear brake master cylinder actuator (it's silver - the original was rust). It also has raised handle bars. They come up to my shoulders.

  This is an earlier picture of the right side, when it still had its rust colored heim joint. That joint had about 3mm of free play in every direction. I think the bike was here when I discovered the leak from the countershaft seal (or o-ring or some other waky Austrian design). Click for a Larger Image

  Click for a Larger Image This was the first time I took the rear wheel off - it comes off very easy. I wanted to work on that heim joint and the master cylinder. I also put new pads on the back brake, but discovered the caliper piston seals were shot. So I ordered some more of those.

  This is the countershaft. See the circlip on the shaft? That is a tight fit, with the idea that the clip holds the sprocket against a spacer that goes in the seal. That spacer pushes an o-ring that keeps oil from pouring out. Note the worn teeth on the sprocket? I have another ready to go on, along with a new rear sprocket and new chain. I also have some new chail sliders and sprocket guards to return the machine to a more stock appearance. Click for a Larger Image

  Click for a Larger Image There is the rear brake master cylinder with the original rust colored heim joint. I am also relacing the crush washers on the brake lines. I did bleed both brakes. The rear brake used some kind of black water for fluid. I think it used to be yellow brake fluid in 2008. When I accelerated or turned or stopped, the kick starter lever would unfold and get in the way of my foot trying to hang on. I discovered that it uses o-rings to create friction in the pivot. So I put some new o-rings in that.

  A common state for the KTM - rear wheel off with something being replaced. I tend to take things apart looking for problems and hoping for none. With this bike, I have found many. It also uses Torx head screws along with some hex head and some allen head. Hmmm. Up until now, I thought the Austrians engineered like the Germans. Click for a Larger Image

  Click for a Larger Image Here's most of the Scooter family. The R6 Track Bike is in front (with no seat). The Ducati 848 is behind that under the cover. Then the red Ducati ST2 is in between the 848 and the KTM.

  I don't use the rear brake much, but its nice to have. Plus I like stuff to work like it was designed. The old caliper seals are right in the middle - they are falling apart and horribly pitted. The caliper piston is just above them. The master cylinder is the S shaped thing to the left. New pads are the copper things near the top. Then the caliper rebuild kit is to the right in all the plastic bags. Click for a Larger Image

  Click for a Larger Image Here is the caliper all rebuilt, with new pads, piston seals, pad keeper pins, and new rubber boots on the caliper slider pins.

  As I mentioned earlier, I like to take things apart to find what could be better. In this case, I found out that the air box plastics could be a lot better. So I ordered some new ones from Rocky Mountain ATV & Dirt Bike. It was about here that I discovered this was not a 2007 but a 2008. I had ordered some chain sliders which bore no resemblence to the ones already on the bike. So its a 2008. Click for a Larger Image

  Click for a Larger Image I'm guessing the airbox plastics became not so good at the same time the rear subframe twisted a little. You can't tell from here, but the right side upper aluminum subframe rail is about one inch higher than the left. So now I have a new subframe going on.

  Bent subframe removed, shock removed, carburetor removed. Cylinder and case case cleaned of the mud that has been sinking in since 2008. Goofy KTM rubberized stickers over the frame removed along with their gooey adhesive. Goofy bar from frame to clutch slave cylinder removed. Slave cylinder cover still on. Click for a Larger Image

  Click for a Larger Image Slave cylinder protective cover removed, frame painted. Note the webbing on the right side frame. Some plasti-goo from PO glue-fest still visible.

  This is the sort-of cleaned up carburetor. Still some mud on the little crevices. I figured I'd wait for a full carb rebuild before I go much deeper. The carb fuels cleanly, so better to leave well enough alone. Click for a Larger Image

  Click for a Larger Image This is the WP Shock taken apart. Another part never maintained since 2008. Hard to believe that group that owned this thing. Shock and spring in the foreground. That little plastic basket in the top right is the air filter frame. A couple of incredibly worn out front sprockets are next to it. The rear brake master cylinder is just above those. The intake reed valve block is next to the top of the shock with the rubber carb intake manifold next to it. Note the rear brake caliper and the rear axle up at the top. Rear sprocket bolts and nuts are to the top left.

  Shock remounted. Also have the new sprocket on and two of the three chain sliders (one on the swing arm, another below the swing arm pivot. The third one will go above the pivot and cover the sprocket, into which the third slave cylinder bolt will go through). Click for a Larger Image

  Click for a Larger Image The new subframe is mounted along with the airbox and the rear inner fender. Note the sprocket guard and slave cylinder pieces. I also installed the kickstand strap.

  Time to clean up the radiators. I took off the aluminum guards and the bracket and gave them a good mud removal session. I think I understand why dirt bikers use a lot of power washers. All except for the PO. Click for a Larger Image

  Click for a Larger Image View from behind with the inner fender mounted. You can see the kickstand in its little rubber sling. The R6 Track Bike is in front and the Ducati ST2 is to the left. I like the little orange stand. It holds lots of crap and matches the scoot's colors.

  The first piece of new orange plastic. This mounted up real nice to the subframe and the new airbox and inner fender. You also see the new lower fender (right in front of rear tire). This was before I figured the orange fender had to go between the inner fender and the subframe. I also have the new air filter installed. I even remembered to take out the red rag. Click for a Larger Image

  Click for a Larger Image All finished (almost). Still missing the pipe. Turns out the original was a bit bent. So it would not fit up into the exhaust port when it was fully located in the silencer. So I had to do some bending.

  I read about this trick in the forums. Stick a pipe in the truck receiver then bend the pipe accordingly. Worked ok, but not enough. I ended up cutting about 1/2 inch off the end of the pipe where it goes into the silencer. That gave me the 1/2 inch I needed to get the header into the exhaust port. Click for a Larger Image

  Click for a Larger Image All finished. Pipe installed and tested.

  So all the work: New brake pads front and rear. Rebuilt rear caliper. New brake pedal hardware. Changed all brake fluid. New chain and sprockets. New chain sliders. New sprocket o-rings. New subframe. Cleaned engine, case, and carburetor. Cleaned shock. Painted frame. New airbox and side panels. New air cleaner. New plastics. New number plate. All new mounting hardware. New pipe o-rings. Modified pipe to fit. Click for a Larger Image

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