Thread: My KTM 950 Adventure thread

Join Date Nov 2009 Location N. Indiana Posts 756

My KTM 950 Adventure thread

As many of you followed My KLR thread and watched the build of the bike, hopefully you read about my frustrations regarding the KLR. It was a great motorcycle and was wonderful in many regards. One issue to me was the lack of power to be able to carry the bike at a speed of more than 70-75mph.

The bike would move at 70-75 but left little power for passing.

My new bike quest was for a machine that I could keep for a long time and satisfy all of my needs. It killed me to get rid of the KLR having done so much to it and becoming one with the bike after 10,000 miles and lots of smiles, but I couldn’t keep both. My choices when considering a new bike were torn between a KTM 950/990 and a BMW F800GS.

I also had my sights on a Triumph Tiger Adventure though the local dealer didn’t have any in stock and showed no interest in getting one in. I wanted a bike with plenty of HP, a 21 front wheel, industry support, and power for accessories like added light’s, GPS and my heated gear. The KTM and the BMW both were known for being world travelers which was appealing.

My drawbacks between the F800GS and the 950/990 were minimal. Will the 100hp dirt inspired KTM be too much for me? Would the lack of a local BMW dealer be an issue for me? Would the additional maintenance costs be an issue? (both bikes go through tires that cost a little more, use premium fuel, synthetic oil’s, more costly farkles. )

Either would have been a great choice. I didn’t think the opportunity for owning a new bike would come so soon but I found a killer deal and had to take the plunge.

So now I have a KTM 950 Adventure, what will I do to it? For starters, I want to address all of the known issues with the bike. I called CJ of CJ Designs (who has made quite a name for himself with the KTM 950 crowd) and he advised installing his water pump kit right from day 1, removing all of the emissions stuff (if legal in my state of course), turning the fuel tanks into a true dual draw tank system with his kit and installing a aftermarket exhaust system.

He also advised to change the oil jet for the clutch. Of course, all of these modifications he offered in his online store. After doing research, his recommendations all made sense.

If you dont want to sift through the forums, here is a great one stop shop for doing research on the most common issues and modifications to the 950. is a great resource as well and should go without saying. Likely if you are reading this, you have been on adv at some point, too.

Here she is. I bought it in the dead of winter, ice on the roads and a mild 30f outside. Of course trailered home due to the ice.

Knowing I already had plans to replace the water pump shaft and seal asap, I wanted to check and see if it had already destroyed itself. The quickest way to check is to pull the clutch cover and inspect for a yellow, milky substance after the bike has been warmed up.

Sure enough, mine was toast. I was disappointed to see this but not surprised. Who knows how long this has been like this but I suspect not very long.

So without thought, I decided that since we are in winter, I might as well tear the bike down and start to investigate other issues fixing everything I can find to ensure a great worry free ‘season’ of riding ahead. My main focus was to address everything CJ mentioned. In stock form, with the preventive maintenance complete, this bike is awesome, so I read.

I want to bring the bike to that point.

Tearing the bike down, I found why this bike gets the race bred attention it does. Everything about this bike is top notch. Even the details like aluminum washers, bolts that are the exact length, the battery at the very bottom of the bike, the massive tubes on the forks, aluminum swing arm, aluminum behind the fairings, chromoly frame. the list goes on.

The bike is currently tore down a little more than this at the moment but these photos display a little more of what I am talking about.

Hopefully, I will have preventive maintenance complete in the next few weeks. More to follow.

KTM 950 Adventure
KTM 950 Adventure
KTM 950 Adventure
KTM 950 Adventure
KTM 950 Adventure

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