Refreshing the ole girl.

bigntall

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 1, 2011
Well I have had my 2013 KTM 500 EXC a few years now and so far she's travelled into 4 countries ( 3 legally) off road and enjoyed it heaps.

Sadly she is starting to show it's age visually, much like it's owner. Dropping the oil once again after I drowned it.




going over..




So after taking care of her mechanically I decided she needed some new makeup to freshen her up.

She was looking a little haggard.



So whilst I was just in the states I picked up some KTM orange powder coat, supposedly it takes 1 pound to do a frame. In the industry the color is labeled Safety Orange, which I had not been able to find in Thailand.
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Stripped the bike down and got ready to take the frame and bits to Richco Custom Powder coating in Chiang Mai.



Located here:
https://www.google.com/maps/place/R...ea5b8a93f949fba!8m2!3d18.7503306!4d99.0282032


I have used another powdercoater in CNX, they re cheaper but the quality finish has not been as consistent as that of Richies.

A week later parts are done.



Had the swing arm done in matte black as I'm not a fan of dull aluminum.




Subframe was also polished while it was apart. Thought about powder coating but felt it would make a decent contrast to the frame a swingarm.



Did a few bits as well.



Those are HDB handgurds. If anyone is looking for handguards with rear view mirrors that work well offroad, are bomber and foolproof. These are the best I've used. Takes the abuse of all my crashes with ease.



The mirror folds inside the handguard when not in use. Wonderful idea and most importantly bombproof.


http://highwaydirtbikes.com/




Now the hard work begins.



Since I have begun to forget my girlfriends name (even after dating for 10 years) when meeting new people. Remembering where all the bits go will be a bit of a challenge. Unfortunately my main Go To friend John when it comes to tech work has flown the coop back to England temporarily so I'm on my own for this job.

Got a set of plastics to go along with the new color frame to give her a new facelift.

Sadly I only use this bike for my long distance off roading so it lives under a set of soft luggage which will no doubt scratch up and make my new plastics look second hand pretty rapidly. So she'll rapidly look second hand like she always does.

 

bsacbob

Administrator
Joined
Jul 1, 2012
Location
Chiang Rai
Bikes
Honda CRM-AR 250, Honda CRF 250-L, Suzuki V Strom XT 650 Honda XR250 Baja BMW F650GS
About time the old girl had some TLC, have you thought about fixing a snorkel on it this time...:lost
 

prince666

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 3, 2013
Location
Shandong (China)
Bikes
CF 250 Jetlux. CFmoto 650 MT Honda CRF 1000 DCT Yamaha 125 YBR KG
You are being very modest now Bigntall, that water looks very deep to me.
 

bigntall

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 1, 2011
She used to look like she was having fun......






Now after a few days, many curse words, grumpier than normal, I finally got it looking like a bike. A special thanks to my bud Bohn helping me get the motor into the frame without mucking things up. However it seems she's looking a little stuck up and Hi-Society now. A few crashes will get snapped back to the reality that she's not a glamour girl.

 

bigntall

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 1, 2011
Next I'm adding gel padding to the seat to help my creaking bum and recover the thing.
 

bsacbob

Administrator
Joined
Jul 1, 2012
Location
Chiang Rai
Bikes
Honda CRM-AR 250, Honda CRF 250-L, Suzuki V Strom XT 650 Honda XR250 Baja BMW F650GS
The bike almost too good to get dirty now Justin, your making good progress though.
 

The Bigfella

Senior Member
Staff member
Joined
Aug 15, 2012
Bikes
KTM 950SER & EXC, BMW R90S & Dakar, MZ250, BSA B33, Norton 16H, Honda - 500 Fs & X, DRZs, XLs XRs CRFs CT110s etc

bigntall

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 1, 2011
The bike almost too good to get dirty now Justin, your making good progress though.
Yea it'll be the best looking dirt bike I will have ever owned..........until it's first mudhole this rainy season. I'm actually betting that the white color will not fare that well up here in the north with a lot of red clay. I'm guessing the red clay will get rubbed into the white plastic having it look much like my tidy whitey undies that have been worn for a week straight.
 

bigntall

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 1, 2011
Ok so part of the refresh was the seat. This one I had done locally a few years ago.




I modified it from the stock shape after riding the stock seat for a couple two day trips and decided on some improvements right then and there. I like a wider rear area for easing any boring pavement and fire roads since this bike is long distance off road bike. I chose a 10" width, scooped an inch of foam out of the front of the seat to give my 5.5 foot frame a shot at dabbing when needed. It creates a rise that stops me sliding back a bit on the 500 and a nice shelf for long distance crap.

I rode with it a few years, and whilst it looked positively horrible I never had butt ache on my long rides. I also don't own a GS so this may keep me from realizing how uncomfortable single cylinders are on boring fireroads and pavement. Longest trip taken being 1 month of off road and DS through 3 countries. So figured I would keep it pretty much the same except try adding 1" of gel seat padding, and removing an inch of foam. Amazon had a decent batch of gel on sale, so scooped it up.

I bought a large square big enough to do a couple seats. Here already rough cut for my 500.



I took the gel to Narong Upholstery,

https://www.google.com/maps/place/N...717927654b5c963!8m2!3d18.7782218!4d99.0512028

Many know of him here in Chiang Mai as he's a wizard at shaping foam and can do whatever you want in terms of custom foam builds once you let him know what you want. ………..the first time. I can't emphasize this point enough. He does exactly what you ask the first time. Others I have used I have to hover over them the whole time giving directions to them repeatedly on what to do despite having told them what I want in advance. Keep in mind his service is not cheap, you pay for it dearly but it is done with quality and without constant revisions needed.

I told Narong what I wanted and boom! he delivered. Chopped a little over an inch of foam from my seat and inserted the gel pad.






Narong covered the gel with 1/8" foam cover so the gel would not stick to the seat cover. Then had Narong fab up a new seat cover.​


N staple it on....




…..and bolted on.




Just heard my shock has just passed through customs so hopefully get the damn thing quickly as I'm going stir crazy sitting on this bloody island passing time waiting for my bike parts to arrive. Scuba diving can only keep me going so long.


 

bsacbob

Administrator
Joined
Jul 1, 2012
Location
Chiang Rai
Bikes
Honda CRM-AR 250, Honda CRF 250-L, Suzuki V Strom XT 650 Honda XR250 Baja BMW F650GS
Ribbed for extra comfort I see [emoji16]

Sent from my SM-G930F using Tapatalk
 

The Bigfella

Senior Member
Staff member
Joined
Aug 15, 2012
Bikes
KTM 950SER & EXC, BMW R90S & Dakar, MZ250, BSA B33, Norton 16H, Honda - 500 Fs & X, DRZs, XLs XRs CRFs CT110s etc
I'll second what you said about Narong's work. He's brilliant. I've even thought about sending a seat up from Oz to him.

Re the white plastics. I've got the white handguards from HDB on my Super Enduro. They did indeed take on a red hue from the conditions on Cape York... but they still look OK. I reckon the white ones would look much better than the orange, the way you've decked out your 500.





I think that whole HDB hand guard setup is the bees knees. I hit a decent size sapling, at speed, on Cape York. Apart from a ringing arm for a few days, no damage. I also clipped a few vehicles going the other way with the mirrors, coming through Indonesia. The just flick back out of the way. No damage. Brilliant.
 

bill

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 27, 2011
Location
Cambodia
Bikes
KTM 500 XCW
Justin
Re the seat cover, are those cross pieces there to provide airflow, or just looks, or both ?
Does Narong do anything to waterproof the stitching on those cross pieces, or is it deemed unnecessary ?
 

bigntall

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 1, 2011
Justin
Re the seat cover, are those cross pieces there to provide airflow, or just looks, or both ?
Does Narong do anything to waterproof the stitching on those cross pieces, or is it deemed unnecessary ?
Bill the thought behind the cross pieces were to add grip. I have the same design utilizing an aftermarket cover on my 250 XCF and it seems to lock me in place pretty good. However I am not impressed with the orange materiel he had. It looks a little slick. I'll have a new cover made if it doesn't work.

I've never seen anyone address the stitching for waterproofing over here. Since it's closed cell foam I guess they deem it unnecessary. Nothing a bit of silicone applied to the threads couldn't do though I guess.
 

bigntall

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 1, 2011
I'll second what you said about Narong's work. He's brilliant. I've even thought about sending a seat up from Oz to him.

Re the white plastics. I've got the white handguards from HDB on my Super Enduro. They did indeed take on a red hue from the conditions on Cape York... but they still look OK. I reckon the white ones would look much better than the orange, the way you've decked out your 500.





I think that whole HDB hand guard setup is the bees knees. I hit a decent size sapling, at speed, on Cape York. Apart from a ringing arm for a few days, no damage. I also clipped a few vehicles going the other way with the mirrors, coming through Indonesia. The just flick back out of the way. No damage. Brilliant.
It was your HDB guards on the 950 that convinced me to get them. The rear view mirror nestling idea convinced me. I had ridden without mirrors on my DS bike in Thailand since 2007 with no mirrors. They were all too vulnerable for my use. Then saw your HDB guards and have had them ever since. Let alone the fact that they are built like bridge fortresses. I smashed a tree with the Cycra's on my 250 XCF when I broke my hand hard enough to crack the aluminum handguards in two, guessing the tree would have broke first with the HDB guards.
 

MastaMax

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 28, 2011
Bikes
15 Yamaha YZ250F / 08 Husky 450SMR / 13 ER6N / 13 KTM 300XCW(sold)
Great to see the king of all adventure bikes (or queen depending on the relation you have with your bike) getting ready for more action!

What's the next planned trip on it?
 

bigntall

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 1, 2011
Great to see the king of all adventure bikes (or queen depending on the relation you have with your bike) getting ready for more action!

What's the next planned trip on it?
It's the king when I crash and it's on top of me, queen when I land on top of it.

Shock getting refreshed and should be here in a couple days.

First trip is as soon as the shock gets bolted on for a day test ride to make sure I didn't screw anything up on the assembly. Then bags will be packed and off the next day for an overnight off road camping trip in an area I want to explore.

Thought you were in Laos currently?
 

MastaMax

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 28, 2011
Bikes
15 Yamaha YZ250F / 08 Husky 450SMR / 13 ER6N / 13 KTM 300XCW(sold)
It's the king when I crash and it's on top of me, queen when I land on top of it.

Shock getting refreshed and should be here in a couple days.

First trip is as soon as the shock gets bolted on for a day test ride to make sure I didn't screw anything up on the assembly. Then bags will be packed and off the next day for an overnight off road camping trip in an area I want to explore.

Thought you were in Laos currently?
Sounds like you already have good plans made up! Couldn't join the Laos trip sadly, I don't have enough free time if you ask me, I should do something about that :)
 

bigntall

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 1, 2011
Well got the girl out for her fist voyage with new color lipstick.



Also testing a new design of soft luggage I put together. Its only been a couple days of testing on them but so far so good. Rackless and all below the seat. Lets see how it works in the long run.
 

bsacbob

Administrator
Joined
Jul 1, 2012
Location
Chiang Rai
Bikes
Honda CRM-AR 250, Honda CRF 250-L, Suzuki V Strom XT 650 Honda XR250 Baja BMW F650GS
Anymore details on the bag you had made up Justin, would be interested to know how it performed and how much it ended up costing.
 

bigntall

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 1, 2011
Anymore details on the bag you had made up Justin, would be interested to know how it performed and how much it ended up costing.
Sure Bob let me get this trip out the way leaving tomorrow and last minute packing.
 
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