.. I just took the plunge and ordered the Rally Raid EVO2 upgrade kit for my 690. I should receive it next week sometime, so looking forward to converting my EVO1 690 into the the new EVO2 look .. I do like the side profile of the new design and it also has 10 litre capacity on the front tanks instead of the 9 litre of the EVO1 tanks. It’s a lot thinner than the EVO1 design which looks a little odd, but sure it will look better in the flesh.

The picture below shows the Rally graphics, but I ordered the white Adventure graphics for mine.

photo-2_zps2f379f66

 

Since I enjoyed my KTM 690 Oryx I purchased in South Africa that much, I decided to sell the beloved F800GS and buy a KTM 690 Enduro R in the UK as well … and of course, had to give it the Rally Raid treatment. Ordered all my stuff from Rally Raid Products which arrived literally next day in time for the bike build over the weekend.

The bike was stock standard, except for an Akrapovic can already fitted. I got up early in the morning to get started…

First, I took it apart, starting with the front mudguard, headlight, airbox, seat, etc ..

Fitted the new white front mudguard (available separately), front frame support …

Then followed by the tanks (I opted for the clear tanks as it’s obviously much easier to check fuel level if needed)

I then fitted the new rear white fender (also available separately) …

Headlight and mask (from a 990 Adventure)…

You have to relocate the speedo a bit higher to fit into the new 990 Adv dash as supplied. All cables are long enough if you loosen some of the cable ties

Then the side fender panels which you have to drill your own holes to align with the brackets installed on the front of the tanks …

Then the front fairing around the headlight ..

The most trickiest part for me, was the fuel pump adaptor, just because you have to remove your existing fuel pump from your tank, which means, you have to drain all the fuel first. It was a bit of a mess, I reckon more fuel ended up on my garage floor than anywhere else :) Once drained, you remove the plastic outer from the fuel pump, drill a 10mm hole to align up with the fuel adapter and install again with the rubber o-ring provided. You can then run your fuel lines from the front tanks to the fuel adaptor ..

By then … almost complete, just to make sure everything is tight, aligned and to put everything else together … not to mention all the graphics…

I then spent some more time until the early hours of the morning with all the graphics … but by the next morning it was complete, a very different bike from the night before :)

Great bike, combined with the longer fuel range and wind protection from the fairing !

All in all, very easy to fit with clear instructions. Great engineering and design work from the guys at Rally Raid Products … since I have done this, they have or are about to release a new fairing tank combination to be more like the 450 Rally bikes you see competing in the Dakar … although, I still prefer this design and look.

Well, I have posted anything for ages and a lot of people still seem to find my blog mainly because of my trip from London to South Africa. It has truly been one of the best things I have done in my life, my journey starts here in London back on 21 Sept 2010. One of the most popular videos is the one of Malawi, not sure why, but it has over 80,000 views already

 

 

Recently I have just been mainly focussing on practicing for the Dawn to Dusk Enduro next month. I have been into this Enduro racing now lately and really enjoying it. I am competing in my first 12hour Enduro race down in Wales over the August bank Holiday weekend. Below are some of my latest Enduro videos. I am still a beginner, been riding enduros for only a few months now.

 

 

… and some not so good ones :)

This morning around 7am, I left Strand in the Western Cape heading for Ceres. I took the R44, through Stellenbosch over the N1 highway to Wellington. I filled up all my tanks at Wellington, about 13L including the fuel that was in there already.

I headed straight for Ceres via the Bain’s Kloof pass, beautiful scenery, sweeping bendy roads through the mountains.


While taking photos, I noticed the rear Rally Raid aux tank is wet, looked like it only seeped through the cap. I have noticed though, that when you fill the two front tanks, the level drops quite quickly and it pushes up the level of fuel in rear tank. I opted for the clear tanks, so you can easily see the fuel levels which is a big help.

I soon arrived in Ceres and then headed for Sutherland. The tarmac soon stopped and it was pretty much all gravel from there on until I reached Sutherland.


In Sutherland, I filled up again, stopped at the local butchery for some “droe wors” and a coke. I then noticed fuel dripping from the rear tank, it looks like it is leaking from the top mounting holes.

I will have to check out the leak when I get to Bloemfontein, in the meantime, I will not completely fill it. So far, it is difficult to judge how much I can get out of all the tanks, but after 250km, I only filled up around 11L, so I am sure you can easily reach over 500km with the tanks.

After reaching Frasersburg, I decided to change my route again, instead of doing 250km of gravel to Victoria West, I got on the tarmac road for Beaufort West. I am currently sleeping over at Haus Holzapfel, heading to Bloemfontein tomorrow morning.


So far, I am very happy with the KTM 690, it easily sits at 120km/h and with the new seat from Guts Racing, Rally Raid fairing and the extended range with the Rally Raid tanks, it makes a great travelling bike. It’s also feels very agile and light to maneuver on the gravel roads!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Location:Beaufort West,South Africa


I arrived in Cape Town a few days ago. Saturday morning, I went through to KTM Cape Town to drop off the Guts Racing seat foam/cover and the Rally Raid rear aux tank.

Yesterday and today, they got the sear re-covered and fitted the aux tank for me. I have to say, I was really impressed with the work done and I am very happy with the bike. I signed a few papers, paid for the Akrapovic exhaust and I was on my way. Did only around 60km today in a very windy Cape Town.

I plan to get up early tomorrow morning and go for a ride along the coast before it gets too windy.

Friday, I am off to Bloemfontein … more pics, tweets and eventually videos to follow.

Location:Strand, Western Cape,South Africa

Posted: February 14, 2012 in Bike Prep, General, Travels
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The time is almost here … tomorrow night (snow-willing), I will be on a plane heading for South Africa. KTM
Cape Town confirmed that Rally Raid is sending my stuff down to Cape Town today, so should be there later this week for them to build and prep the bike before the weekend … very excited !

I will stay in Cape Town for a while, then the plan of action is to leave Cape Town around the 16th, heading directly to Ceres and from there head to Victoria West in the Northern Cape using only secondary roads, no motorways for me thanks !

The first day is about 600km with a mix of tar and gravel roads (I think) .. sleep over in Victoria West somewhere, which I am yet to look into to, so any suggestions of a good place to sleep over in that region would be great !

… on the second day, I will head to Bloemfontein in the Free State about 500km of mixed roads again. I should be able to do that on one go, the Rally Raid tanks, 9.5L up front and 4.5 at the back with the addition of the stock 12L tank, should give me a range of about 500km.

Looking forward to riding in South Africa again, such a beautiful country, just a shame these holidays are so short.

KTM Cape Town 690 Oryx

This morning I had a long chat with Ashley from KTM Cape Town who sounded very upset and disappointed with my previous two posts.

I understand that I might have said stuff that upset him, but he also understands my concerns and he admitted that regrettably he failed to manage my exceptions the way he wanted to and apologised for that. He also assured me that they indeed got burgled and I apologise for my comments in the previous post, I am sure being a victim of any form of burglary is very upsetting.

He does sound very passionate about building up their reputation that might have been scarred by previous owners before they taken it over in 2007. He is also very determined to build proper relationships with his customers. He seems dedicated and caring from the conversation we had. All he wants is happy customers and all I want to be is a happy customer !

He promised, come hell or high water, that he will have my bike ready by the time I get to Cape Town. I trust him and I’m not going to worry about it anymore, so after all, I will have my new 690 in about 2 weeks, exciting stuff !

This reminds me, I probably need new boots as all my other boots are muddy and stinky. I like the Scott 250 boots which I intend to use for road use only. I think I will order them today.

This weekend we also got some more enduro practice with the guys from Desert Rose Racing, been raining quite a bit the last few days, so it’s gonna be another muddy and dirty one :)

The week after that, I am off to South Africa … will keep you posted !

Following on from my previous post :  KTM 690 Oryx or Not ? … I have not heard anything from KTM Cape Town since my email to them on Sunday. I have sent them another email late last night and still no reply, so I decided to phone them up.

I asked to speak to Ashley and they put me through … he assured me that they weren’t ignoring me, he had his phone, laptop, etc .. stolen (I do find that hard to believe), so didn’t have access to email. In my emails I also copied his wife Amanda and Charl (not sure what his position is, but dealt with him before), so someone must have gotten my email at least ?

Anyway, he said that he doesn’t have what I ordered, black fairing and clear tanks, but Rally Raid said they are sending a shipment this coming Friday although Amanda told me they were expecting stuff last week already?

Why have they only ordered now and not 3 months ago when I paid for it ? He also mentioned that he had it with Rally Raid, because what they say and what they do are two different things … Strange,  when I ordered stuff from Rally Raid, I received all my stuff within 2 days, never had a problem with Rally Raid before.

Ashley told me, he will have what I ordered by the 10th of Feb 2012 and said I shouldn’t worry, it will be fine which put my mind at ease …

UNTIL …. cheekily, I phoned up John at Rally Raid who informed me that they have no outstanding orders from KTM Cape Town since December when they shipped them loads of stuff and there are no shipments scheduled to leave this Friday !!!!??

Why all the lies ? Why can’t they just be honest and tell me that they haven’t placed the order yet ? Nothing KTM Cape Town have said to me thus far seemed to be the truth, in fact, all I know is that there is a 690 Enduro box with my name on it, might as well be an empty box for all I know.

Not going well so far …. and this is after I parted with R105,000 (+/- £10,000)

Two weekends ago, I took my recently acquired KTM 450 EXC to the Desert Rose Racing/Academy Enduro practice days. It was the first time I have ridden the 450, but I was very happy except for the occasional wheel spin (on the rim). I have since bought a better rimlock which I hope will solve the issue.

I am specifically training for the Dawn to Dusk Enduro in August down in Wales. Last year I attempted the “Big Bike Rally” at the Dawn to Dusk on my BMW F800GS which was disastrous. My alternator/stator had problems which meant the battery didn’t get charged and the bike died within the first lap, to my relief to be honest, it was very muddy and with a 180kg motorcycle it’s not fun :)

So, hence the new 450 … Below as some videos of the practice days, good fun, relaxed environment to practice at your own pace and well recommended. I am going out there again this Sunday, can’t wait !

KTM 690 Oryx or Not ?

Posted: January 24, 2012 in General
Tags: , ,

I have to say, I am getting slightly worried now. About 3 months ago, I paid a R20,000 deposit to KTM Cape Town to build me one of their KTM 690 Oryx bikes so that I can pick it up once I am there on holiday. Since then, the guys at KTM Cape Town asked me to pay in full “to help their cashflow” ….  R105,000 in total, maybe my mistake ?

Well, since I have paid in full, everything has gone a little quiet. They seem to be unresponsive to emails and even if they reply, they seem very vague as to whether they will be able to have the motorcycle ready for collection in time. I found out last week, that they have everything except the tank kit, which makes me believe they never ordered the stuff months ago when they said they did or they used my stuff for someone else. I have since sent them another email asking whether they have received all my bits and pieces, but again, silence …

I will be arriving in Cape Town in around 2 weeks from now, which is why I am a little concerned, if they couldn’t get the stuff in the 3 months since I paid for it, what are the chances they will have it and build the bike in 2 weeks ??

Anyway, I will give them the benefit of the doubt. If it’s not ready, I will be very disappointed to say the least…