Orange way of life -KTM 390

sudhir222

Motoholic
Well, gentlemen, managed to do a decent 4 day ride after about 2 years.
The route was Bangalore-Pondicherry-Kodaikanal-Bangalore. Covered about 1500kms on the Katoom.
The odometer now stands at 3550kms.
How did the bike perform? In one word - magnificent.

The engine is a son of a gun. Doesnt tire at all. Just wring the throttle and it will keep purring the whole day,
irrespective of the weather and speed. Mostly rode at 100-130kmph in the better roads and the hilly, winding roads of Kodai could be brilliantly enjoyed around 60-80kmph. The bike is a banker's delight!

Now the bad part:
1. The rear monoshock is already weeping oil - will have to get it replaced under warranty.
Havent actually ridden in severe conditions and hence this really surprises and disappoints me.

2. The oil filter cover and the engine oil drain nuts have smears of oil -which I think is kinda okay, owing to the high
temperature and the thinning of oil. Still, not expected from this ride.

3. Engine head on the RHS has a very faint spot of oil, again not worry some but I am annoyed.
I did not want this bike to acquire the RE traits.

4. Headlamp is not sufficient in the night if riding above 100kmph. Not at all confidence inspiring. Will have to check other options.

5. Front brake has lost lot of bite - needs to be squeezed hard to get a strong braking.

Apart from these, the engine and transmission is a rock solid block. No strain observed whatsoever.
The seat though is not so comfortable - had real trouble sitting on it while on the last leg. Thinking of getting some
extra cushion, damn the looks.

Wind blast above 115kmph is a definite factor, especially with tall riders(am almost 6') and I had to literally lie on the tank bag to ride effortlessly. So might have to check some cheaper windshield options as well!
Overall, a very satisfying and grin-worthy motorcycle.

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Cheers :D
 
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Mandar_C500

Well-Known Member
Nice captures Sudhir,
One Q though, the RYNOX bag is a tank bag or tail bag. If it is tail bag then review please. I am looking for a tail bag.
Sorry to hear about the oil marks and leaking rear monoshock.

Regards
Mandar
 

sudhir222

Motoholic
Nice captures Sudhir,
One Q though, the RYNOX bag is a tank bag or tail bag. If it is tail bag then review please. I am looking for a tail bag.
Sorry to hear about the oil marks and leaking rear monoshock.

Regards
Mandar
Thank you buddy. The tank bag is pretty big and can easily(better) used as tail bag. It also comes with straps to hold it in place.
Will post a review on it. The quality is absolutely superb.

Excellent :)

Loved the last picture!
Cheers bro ;) How is your LB doing? Mine is lying at friend's place since a month and a half. Jeez..
 

KJa

Active Member
Cheers bro ;) How is your LB doing? Mine is lying at friend's place since a month and a half. Jeez..
LB is good, if not great! needs a thorough service & a ride after that. A ride is long due :)

- - - Updated - - -

The tank bag is pretty big and can easily(better) used as tail bag. It also comes with straps to hold it in place.
Will post a review on it. The quality is absolutely superb.
The tank/tail bag is pretty big & awesome!! SHould be more than enough for 3-4 day's ride.
 

darkside_of_d_sun

Moderator
Staff member
Leaking monoshock and oil leaks marks from oil filter cover, engine head is not normal for a new bike. There seems to be niggling quality issues with the Dukes across the country, reminds me of the times when the CBR250 got launched. Whats up with the manufacturing quality control in India?
 

sudhir222

Motoholic
LB is good, if not great! needs a thorough service & a ride after that. A ride is long due :)

- - - Updated - - -



The tank/tail bag is pretty big & awesome!! SHould be more than enough for 3-4 day's ride.
Yeah, we need to catch up for a long ride!
Tank bag is defnitely capable of holding up luggage for almost a week's ride, if packed carefully.

Leaking monoshock and oil leaks marks from oil filter cover, engine head is not normal for a new bike. There seems to be niggling quality issues with the Dukes across the country, reminds me of the times when the CBR250 got launched. Whats up with the manufacturing quality control in India?
Been to the Khivraj service center today since I know that the BTM folks are incapable of making any sensible diagnosis.
The mechanic at Khivraj said that the head gasket will be replaced and so would the monoshock.
I also have this low speed jerks popping up - they want have a look at the fuel filter. All this to be done on Monday - have left the bike today.
Might as well take a day off and check out what's happening over there.

As far as the QA is concerned, I think its the usual Indian mentality of chalta-hai. When they know about so many cases of leaking head, why not
dig deeper and ensure this doesn't recur? Certainly disappointing with a bike of this selling price.

Hoping fellow BCMTians with Dukes to update their experience here. I dont seriously believe am the only one!! :D
Atleast we would know about the glitches and ways of sorting out them.
 
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sudhir222

Motoholic
Alright, been ages since I posted in BCMT...

Update.
Odometer reading: 6200kms.
Due for second service. Hardly finding time to get it done.

Went on a 1300kms ride a fortnight back - Bangalore-Coimbatore-Kotagiri-Munnar-Bangalore.
Suraj rode along until the Combi stretch and the whole ride was absolutely brilliant. Way too hot all over but
gave me the longing peace(momentary!) of a good, hard solo run. The last time I rode solo was way back during the Spiti run - Kharcham-Chitkul-Delhi after Sumantra rode back early owing to his shortage of leaves.

The weather in Munnar was fantastic, with me getting drenched for the last 10kms or so.
Tires are awesome in the wet roads while the Bullet's pathetic wet road tires still has the shadow over me to test the Metzelers in the wet.

So how did the Katoom do? He was almost flawless. Good roads, bad roads, not a single piece of complaint.
The bad roads did get me tired due to the impact that gets transferred to the rider but I chose to stand-and-ride in such stretches.

The low RPM ride is still all bumpy with jerks in the 1 and 2 gears. Am pretty much annoyed with this. Almost feels like taming a wild horse.
Brakes are still good, although the front has lost a bit of bite.
Left Munnar at 4:30AM and I believe the head lamp is so insufficient. Really need to check out some LED options.
I was back in Bangalore by 1:45PM. Excluding the breaks, took about 8hours of riding and was not really tired.
Temperature gauge remained around 9-10 bars all the way, 11 during the start-stop stretches. This bike really heats up a lot and gets
so uncomfortable for the ride when it does. Especially when the weather is hot.

Windshield is a must for speeds above 120kmph(now I have fitted a Stunner screen, more on this later).

For once, I was just riding without worrying about breakdowns in case of speed runs. HAPPY!!!! :D

Few pics:

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A riverbed inside Satyamangalam forest reserve, en route Coimbatore.

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Through Chinnar wildlife sactuary.

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More updates once I get the second service done.
Would be getting Motul 300V oil this time.
 
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sudhir222

Motoholic
Waiting for more..
And your diy visor
Sorry Sanchit. It has been ages since I posted anything.
Here you go :) Thanks for the interest!


**Update**
Odo reading: 9120kms

Went for the second free service(it was still expensive at Rs2600!) at 6300kms.

Notable changes: The service center replaced the front sprocket and the securing plate on top it. The explanation was that this plate has a better design but no idea why the sprocket was changed. This is happening with all the bikes, as and when they visit the service centers.

Air filter, fuel filter and spark plugs were replaced.
1.5ltr of Motul 7100 used. Interestingly, Motul 300V has been listed as not-to-be-used oil and the technician said that engines might have a premature failure. I really dont understand the logic.

O-rings on the top of the cylinder head were replaced as I complained of oil seepage around the spark plug.

My speedometer sometimes shows 0 when running. Somewhat erratic and there is no pattern. Again, was told that this could be because of the battery terminals and that the newer lot of bikes come with a different seat design to avoid the battery terminals getting crunched.

I now have the shift indicators at 8500 for RPM1 and 11500 for RPM2 :grin:


The Katoom still manages to get a smile when I twist the throttle. Was so childishly happy to lay hands on the bike after a gap of a month and a half!

During the recent stay in Melbourne, ordered a euro beam 10W CREE fog lamp along with a handlebar mount switch and a dual USB charger socket.
All the items are pretty impressive. It was only last weekend that I hooked up the fog lamp with the accessories socket and did a good 300kms ride. What do I think? FANTASTIC. I could confidently cruise at speeds around 100-110kmph which was otherwise scary with the stock headlamp. $110 very well spent! Yet to connect the USB socket though.
Wonder what is the max current that could be drawn out of the accessories outlet? My guess is about 2-3Amps meaning approx 40W power.

A windscreen also has been added though its not much of a help with speeds above 120kmph. So for now, merely cosmetic and to some extent, protects the speedo console.

The engine idles well at 1500RPM and still has the shudders and jerks within 4k revs. I have resigned and accepted this behaviour now and consider it as a feature. The katoom runs beautifully, responds well for the throttle twists.
Gear box has gotten bit clunky now. Noisy shifts from 1st to 2nd, unless am really conscious about the shift and hold the clutch in for an extra second during the shift.
Valve train noise has increased too. While its a widely known saying in the biker world that loud valves saves engines, I do want to have the clearances checked soon.

The best FE I managed is 38kms/litre. This, is with a sane and constant speed of 80kmph in 6th. Before someone wonders why in god's name did I try something like this - almost ran out of fuel and with no fuel stations in sight, I decided to extract maximum mileage while the speedo's fuel meter displayed 0kms more

The engine head still weeps around the top gasket surface. Not a considerable amount but just stains.
I seriously need to find a add-on cushion for the seats. Such a pain in the down-there(quite literally) after long riding hours.
Overall, am still grinning :p

There is a short 600kms ride coming up next weekend, so will post an update then..

Few pics of the mods:
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Cheers for now gentlemen..
 
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