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Offline malJohann

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..KTM 640 Adventure reliability...
« on: May 30, 2008, 04:08:58 pm »
What can you dogs tell me about KTM 640 Adventure reliability, and please, I want the good as well as the bad. Also, is it a good commuter?
Don't waste any more time.

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Offline Metaljockey

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Re: ..KTM 640 Adventure reliability...
« Reply #1 on: May 31, 2008, 10:40:19 am »
First, no, it's not a good commuter.

Reliability - I'll say it is reasonably reliable. A lot of owners swear by them and had no trouble from their bikes. There are also more than a couple that swear at them and had endless problems.

One thing to look out for is the pre 2003 models, they have a dodgy carrier bearing on the output shaft. When it collapses it breaks shit, you should change it as soon as you can, apparently it gives no warning before it goes.

Also the 2001-2003 has a defect that has the spokes break and then enter the rim and puncture the front tyre. It took them three years to admit there's a problem, but there is a recall now and they replace those rims free of charge.


Offline edgy

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Re: ..KTM 640 Adventure reliability...
« Reply #2 on: May 31, 2008, 12:26:37 pm »
Must say...awesome bike to ride,but i am nervous of them.Feel much more secure with the XT!
www.astonesthrow.co.za

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Offline Giraffe

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Re: ..KTM 640 Adventure reliability...
« Reply #3 on: May 31, 2008, 01:44:10 pm »
Best bike I've ever had. I sold mine yesterday and still have a tear in my eye. The bike is not a great commuter but it is not as bad as people make it out to be. There is very little to compare with it when it comes to off road. It will take almost everything that you throw at it and comes back looking for more. I sold mine with just under 8000km and never had a days shite with it. I give it a huge thumbs up :ricky:
 

Offline The TRANSPORTER

Re: ..KTM 640 Adventure reliability...
« Reply #4 on: May 31, 2008, 01:49:20 pm »
Commuter...NO...i dont like em... :pot: :pot:
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Offline Andy660

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Re: ..KTM 640 Adventure reliability...
« Reply #5 on: June 01, 2008, 10:23:49 am »
Yes and you can even  make a sidecar out of it .

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Offline malJohann

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Re: ..KTM 640 Adventure reliability...
« Reply #6 on: June 02, 2008, 08:46:25 am »
Okay, so don't buy a pre-2003 and it's reliable to at least 8,000km. Why is it not a good commuter?
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Offline krazy-eyes

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Re: ..KTM 640 Adventure reliability...
« Reply #7 on: June 02, 2008, 09:50:10 am »
i'll try and be objective here....

i got one (a 640) with 600km on the clock. it was 14 months old.

the carb was giving trouble from day one - it died 4 times on the way home.
KTM couldnt fix it in 4 days and were asking mechanics across the street for ideas, but everyone was scratching their heads.
eventually they swopped it for a new carb under warranty (which had already expired 2 months prior)
so thumbs up for that, but it still didnt fix the spluttering problem which occured between 3 and 4 thousand revs.

i lived with it, but it made day to day riding absolute hell - imagine going in between cars with a bike that shoots forward one moment, and then dives the next, uncontrollably, when all you want to do is match the speed of the traffic around you.

that was the 1st straw.
the last straw?
the one day i got home and saw that the bashplate was wet. "strange" i thought, "i dont remember going through water."
well it wasnt water, it was oil, coming from the crank case. oil? on a bike with 1000km?

i gave the bike back to the dealer pronto!

i dont see why others reckon it's not for commuting, because it certainly wasnt made for open roads.
offroad it's good, but heavy - it aint no scrambler.
so, if it wasnt made for commuting, offroad, or open roads, there isnt much left.

i'd say it is fine for commuting, but anything over 80km/h is a living hell.
there is zero wind protection, it vibrates, the steering is vague, and it nosedives like a rodeo horse when you brake.

it is running at full revs long before you see 160, not that you want to travel that kind of speed on it anyway.
overtaking feels dangerous unless you kick it down a gear, which has the engine screaming and vibrating in protest even more.

ok, so that was the 640.
the 950 was marginally better in that it had power to overtake and cruise at 140 and not feel like the engine might explode at any given moment.
but it still had no wind protection, and it comes with it's own set of worries.

it came out the factory with a loose headbearing assembly.
i had to take the whole front end off three times before it was tight enough.

the water pump seal went on mine. how did i find out?
oil in the radiator.
according to KTM, oil in the coolant is "normal".
OK........... :-\
further research on my part revealed that it had a defective waterpump seal, a popular 950 problem.

the 950/990 also has a legendary airlock that forms in the two fuel tanks.
the two tanks are connecteds via a hose, but for some reason an airlock forms and suddenly the fuel pisses out the breather on the one side, while the other side is empty.

then, it also dies at traffic lights.
it just cuts out....
no warning.
dead.
then you look like an idiot trying to restart the bike while the light is green and everyone behind you is cursing.
no one knows what causes this.

dont forget the dreaded headshake.

ive heard that the 950/990's have a battery drain problem too, but cannot confirm that.


with all due respect to all KTM owners out there, my conclusion is:
the only reason you ride a KTM is because you dont know that there is a world of better bikes out there, and you refuse to even contemplate that perhaps KTM is overhyped - kind of like land rover owners.

ive owned 2 KTM's and 4 land rovers. you reach a point where you ask yourself "why am i torturing myself like this ?"
in the mean time, ive ridden all of the BMW products, from the 1200GSA, 1200GS, 800GS, 650GS, down to the x country.

all i can say is - KTM owners dont know what they are missing out on.

it says "ready to race"
they dont say anything about reliability or comfort.  ;)
 

Offline LuckyStriker

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Re: ..KTM 640 Adventure reliability...
« Reply #8 on: June 02, 2008, 10:02:21 am »
I fell in love with the looks of the 640 a long time ago
So many times I have gone to the KTM shop and stared at the 640.

I came very, very close to buying one but ducked out at the last minute.
I wish I could hear convincing good news about this bike but it seems to be something of a lucky packet.
After you sign that check you either get a treasure that is slightly difficult to live with of a throw-away POS.
 

Offline Davie_sprocket

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Re: ..KTM 640 Adventure reliability...
« Reply #9 on: June 02, 2008, 12:10:01 pm »
I would disregard krazy-eyes opinion - fawk the man drives a Land Rover  >:D

Seriously I don't agree with with him on most of his opinions, but everyones got their opinion ( I think he is a GS type guy anyway  ;D)

Ok a bit more serious

My 640 has now has 25 000km

Its been in a few times for a leaking base gasket (a common fault on the 05 models), easily resolved when they did what I asked them eventually (replace with the metal gasket and use a sealer) Never leaked again for the past 17 000 km)

One day something came off the stator and trashed the pick up - VERY unusual and the bike was long time out of warrenty period - Repaired by KTM free of charge.

A mate (Smurf) bought his 640 at the same time and never has any sort of problem, same milage as me.

I think it is an awesome bike (had a 380 eXC 2 smoke before)

I feel it has plenty of wind deflection up to about 130
It is heavy but suspension handles it well (only bike that would come close is a 525 with a large tank - besides servicing)
Traffic - always puts a smile on my face
Steering feel - yes vague, but would expect that with the steering angle - GET USED TO IT!
If you don't like the steering diving on breaking get a GS!
Vibration - yes it vibrates- depends on what you are used to - get a GS otherwise!
Overtaking- NEVER a PROBLEM!!!!!

A 640 is not a bike that one needs to take to the dealer - if you like servicing your own bike then the 640 is the one for you.

THERE IS NO BIKE OUT THERE THAT I WOULD SWOP MY 640 FOR!!!!!!!!!!



O about commuting _ Not the best option,- just too expensive as a commuter. Not the bike you want to clock milage on - save it for the trips - eats tires on tar, but that depends on how happy you are on the throttle - not easy as the sound of the Akro in 2 and third is nice






« Last Edit: June 02, 2008, 04:02:31 pm by Davie_sprocket »
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Offline krazy-eyes

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Re: ..KTM 640 Adventure reliability...
« Reply #10 on: June 02, 2008, 01:25:41 pm »
in my defence, i DID get rid of the landy  ;D

ok, maybe i came across too strong, the ktm's have their positives like most power in their respective class of displacement, but it comes at a price.

i am just wowed by the fact that, for SO long i refused to believe that there was anything superior to a KTM.  :-[
being stubborn is a a problem all KTM'ers suffer from.
my illusion came tumbling down the other day when i set foot on a BMW for the 1st time.

power, comfort, handling, and service - it all seems better than the junk from austria

 

Offline LuckyStriker

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Re: ..KTM 640 Adventure reliability...
« Reply #11 on: June 02, 2008, 01:54:11 pm »
Hell hath no fury like a biker scorned

you and Adventurer should get together and swap stories ;D
 

Offline Adventurer

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Re: ..KTM 640 Adventure reliability...
« Reply #12 on: June 02, 2008, 03:31:25 pm »
Hell hath no fury like a biker scorned

you and Adventurer should get together and swap stories ;D

We'd probably come to blows.... ;D ;D
IMO KE needs to buy himself a GS and be happy.
The bikes are good, it just depends on the staff you deal with.
I've had 3 Beemers in the family, IMO the 1150 GSA was the best GS they've built, me on a 1200? Not likely.
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Offline krazy-eyes

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Re: ..KTM 640 Adventure reliability...
« Reply #13 on: June 02, 2008, 04:31:50 pm »
Hell hath no fury like a biker scorned

you and Adventurer should get together and swap stories ;D

 he he  :imaposer:
 

Offline Adventurer

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Re: ..KTM 640 Adventure reliability...
« Reply #14 on: June 02, 2008, 06:05:11 pm »
KE, are you buying a GS 650/Dakar? If so you can rest assured your hassles are over, that is a bullet proof scoot. I think after all the kark you've bought over the years, FOUR Landies.....it's about time you rest. ;D ;D
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Offline krazy-eyes

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Re: ..KTM 640 Adventure reliability...
« Reply #15 on: June 03, 2008, 09:29:59 am »
KE, are you buying a GS 650/Dakar? If so you can rest assured your hassles are over, that is a bullet proof scoot. I think after all the kark you've bought over the years, FOUR Landies.....it's about time you rest. ;D ;D

looking for a GSA.
will try to buy new so it's still under gaurantee etc.
 

Online Boerbok

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Re: ..KTM 640 Adventure reliability...
« Reply #16 on: June 03, 2008, 02:24:27 pm »
I would not put money on it - again...

Bought a brand new 2002 640 Adv. Sold it at 5000km, and good riddance!

From day 1 I had:
- a cracked triple clamp - had to wait weeks for parts before the dealer fixed it
- an oil leak on the gearbox (after various attempts to fix it by not spliting the engine cases, the dealer eventually had to split the cases to fix it)  :eek7:
- lost the air screw on the carb (vibrated loose). Had to wait 6 weeks for them to ship a stupid brass screw from Austria
- almost lost one of the MAIN nuts holding the cylinder on the engine. It fell out (due to vibration again), and luckily I found it laying on the skid plate! One of the other's was so loose I could almost turn it by hand.
- Exhaust header leaked where it attached to the engine. Dealer "fixed" it, but the fix only lasted a week.

Bike spent more time at the dealer or waiting for spares than at my house in the 18 months I had it.

It was a great bike on paper, but owning one? Never again! Maybe I was just not hands-on enough to tame it... I dunno  ???

At that time I was living 160km from the nearest dealer, which only made the experience much much worse

Have been riding BMW's ever since, and could not be happier. They might not be "Ready to Race", but in my experience they are a helluva lot more reliable, which is kinda important to me since I am using my bike for commuting

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Offline bradleys

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Re: ..KTM 640 Adventure reliability...
« Reply #17 on: June 04, 2008, 11:32:07 am »
I have had a few different bikes at the moment i have a beta 525 for enduros it has a ktm motor no sh*t from it.I also have a 640 adv THE BEST BEAST EVER.I have had no trouble with it,been all over,ridden to Nam,dirt all the way from cape town with 4 other 640,s no hassles.As davey sprocket says great bike to comute, have lots of fun.Iknow guys who bought bmw,s and had problems,honda,s yammies and suzuki,s So what ever you get hopefulley you wont have a friday ass bike.Just  go and enjoy the out doors with fellow dogs :ricky: :ricky: :ricky: :ricky: :ricky:.                           
ROUTE DIFFICULTY
1 = tar
2 = good gravel /pillian friendly
3 = interspersed with sand, mud, sand , bush / not pillian friendly
4 = lots of sand, technical riding 5 = expert only
 

Offline the_wes

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Re: ..KTM 640 Adventure reliability...
« Reply #18 on: June 04, 2008, 01:19:50 pm »
it sounds like, from what i'm hearing, buy the newest one you can get? like a 2005?

 

Offline malJohann

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Re: ..KTM 640 Adventure reliability...
« Reply #19 on: June 04, 2008, 01:28:10 pm »
it sounds like, from what i'm hearing, buy the newest one you can get? like a 2005?

Or get a BMW thumper and slap on some after-market tanks. I just sooo love the look of the KTM, but lots of things that once was ugly to me became beautiful when I saw the real nature of the beast. So, I'm sure I'll warm to either a G650 xChallenge or G450X eventually (more likely the 450).
Don't waste any more time.

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