2012 KTM 350 EXC-F: Building the perfect "Wee Beasty"

Technical articles, tips, tricks and advice from the experts (and there are plenty of you!) on jetting, suspension, riding techniques, muffler bearings, powerband installation or anything dirt.

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2012 KTM 350 EXC-F: Building the perfect "Wee Beasty"

Postby E-Ticket » Sat Dec 31, 2011 10:53 pm

Cheers, everyone!

I have been riding a 2010 Husaberg FE 390 for the last two years and have LOVED it!

'Inga', my faithful "Swedish Girlfriend" now has over 2400 miles and 136 hours on her ... and has *never* missed a beat. Hot, cold, wet, muddy, no problem-o. And the fuel injection just rocks! Heck, I even did a 5-day Baja trip with Baja Bound Adventures on the annual "Hooters on Scooters" ride with zero issues. Which is great to be able to say when you are in the middle of BFE and watching someone pour gas into your bike out of an old milk jug. :^O

http://www.bajaboundmoto.com/

Plus, I love how nimble the Husaberg is on the trails and the power band is *perfect* for me. I also want to give major thanks to Rick Bozarth at Boss Offroad Services Specialties (BOSS) for all his great support and advice. I highly recommend his shop and expertise if you're interested in the Husaberg brand!

http://www.offroadboss.com/

But then this last summer, I entered the Lone Wolf ISDE in the Tillamook National Forest last year and an idea got planted in my little brain. The Lone Wolf is one of the tighter, tougher races in our area and I found myself wishing that I had a bit lighter bike for some of the really tight sections. I thought how cool it would be to have a direct-injected two-stroke for really tight races like the Lone Wolf and Devil's Head ISDEs. But the rumored DI-2T ship may never arrive at the rate they're going! LOL. I also thought briefly about regular two-strokes but don't care for mixing my gas, the smoke, and the peaki(er) power bands.
And yes, yes, .... please hold the cards and letters. I grew up riding and racing and loving two-smokes. But street-legal and the smooth 4T power band is what works best for me these days.

Then KTM announced their new 2012 KTM 350 EXC-F. Fuel-injected, 10-12 lbs lighter than 'Inga,' electric start *and* kick starter ... AND it's street-legal ..... oo-o-o-hhhh.

Thought quite a while about trading in the perfect power band of "Inga" for a bit lighter/nimbler "race bike." But to make the decision even harder -- I knew that I couldn't afford to have two dirt bikes. In the ideal world, I would love to keep my Hooseyburger as my dedicated dual-sport bike, for faster, more open riding, and going to Baja ... but alas, I can't. So that made the decision even harder to make.

But what the heck. It's a proven fact that none of us is going to get out of here alive and no one knows when it's their time to leave the party. So bingo-bango-bongo ".... say hello to my little 'frend' ....!"

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Many, many thanks to Nick Schreiber and Scott Russel at Motosport Hillsboro for helping me land one of the first 2012 KTM 350 EXC-Fs in Oregon. Woo-hoo! Thanks, Nick!

http://www.hillsboromotorcycles.com/

Okay, okay, okay ... I'm rambling again .... I know. But I think it's important to set the stage.

The point of this post is to take a 'brandy-new' Katoom from Day 1 all the way through initial check-out, break-in and riding.
I will be documenting all of the set-up procedures and tips that I have accumulated over the years through personal trial-n-error (woops! well, that didn't work very well) and the fantastic wealth of information from all of the riders and bike builders on KTMTalk.com. I will also be documenting what I think are the best aftermarket additions and "bling" for this bike. Not every one will agree with some of these set-ups and/or tips ... but they are the ones that have worked best for me over many, many years of riding and all are proven.

One other thing. A LOT of the tips will seem to be *VERY* basic to most experienced riders and racers. But one of the reasons that I am doing this at such a basic and detailed level is for all those brand-new motorcycle riders who have just joined our sport and can use all the help they can get. This is my way of helping pay back all those peeps on KTMTalk.com who helped me out when I started riding KTMs and Husabergs.

http://www.ktmtalk.com/

So. Shall we get started? Good. :^)
"AYHIN"

Mine: '12 KTM 350 EXC-F (Wee Beasty); '99 Honda VFR 800i Interceptor
Wife's: '08 KTM 250 XCF-W, '04 Honda CBR600 F4i

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Re: 2012 KTM 350 EXC-F: Building the perfect "Wee Beasty"

Postby E-Ticket » Sat Dec 31, 2011 11:00 pm

BUILDING THE PERFECT "WEE BEASTY"

Now, for anyone that has been following the story fuel-injection being introduced into the dirt bike world ... it has been a bit of a bumpy road here and there for all of the dirt bike manufacturers. You can get away with crappy, dirty, ethanol gas on a carby bike. But that kind of stuff just wreaks havoc on fuel pumps and fuel injectors with *teeny-tiny* little spray orifices.
And for those that know me well ... I .... ummm ... tend to be a little on the paranoid/preventive side of bike set-up and maintenance. Okay, maybe a lot. (grin). But hey! It's no fun pushing your dead bike 10 miles over rugged, nasty trails!

So for one of my very first steps I plan to remove the gas tank and flush out any "bad stuff" before I even ride the bike.

But first things first! Let's check out all the bling-n-stuff that comes with your new Katoom.
Here is a short video of the Owner's Manual, tools, spare parts, doo-dads, and extras that come with your new scoot.
If you're missing any of these items - you should talk to your dealer. "^)

FOR VIDEO, CLICK ON THE FOLLOWING GRAPHIC:

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Next up is wheel prep.

One of the early prep tips I learned was to take a Scotch-Brite pad and brake cleaner and lightly scrub the braking surface of the braking rotors.
This is to remove any corrosion protection from the braking surface and improve initial break-in and braking performance.
NOTE! I taped over the open seal area to keep any sanding particles from contaminating the grease! Yes, I am paranoid. (g)
(And yes, the SB pad is upside down to show the 'scrubby part.' Sheesh ... what a picky bunch. (g))

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And then clean with Maxima Contact Cleaner afterwards.

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Bike manufacturers are notorious for being a bit stingy with the assembly grease. So I automatically take apart and grease all the major parts.
To remove the wheel spacers, simply use a large drift, insert it *through* the hub, and make contact with the back edge of the wheel spacer on the other side.
A few gentle taps of the hammer and the wheel spacers will come right out.

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And yup. More evidence of the "Great European Grease Shortage of 2011" ....

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The rear wheel was the same way:

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I wipe off all of the original grease and *liberally* apply Bel-Ray Waterproof Grease under and around the seals to help keep out water.

TIP: Don't forget to get a thin coating of grease on the axle spacer tube on the inside of the wheel rims!
It doesn't carry any weight or spin at all ... but it's important to get some grease on them to help avoid corrosion.
The same goes for the axles. Clean them *very* well and then make sure that the "entire" axle has a thin coat of waterproof grease.
This helps keep out water, mud, and dust ... and makes maintenance and parts life so much better!
All of our wheel bearings go well over 4000 miles with just simple maintenance and upkeep.
You can pay it now ... or pay it later. (g)

Ah... that's better!

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"AYHIN"

Mine: '12 KTM 350 EXC-F (Wee Beasty); '99 Honda VFR 800i Interceptor
Wife's: '08 KTM 250 XCF-W, '04 Honda CBR600 F4i

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Re: 2012 KTM 350 EXC-F: Building the perfect "Wee Beasty"

Postby E-Ticket » Sat Dec 31, 2011 11:10 pm

I took the opportunity while the rear wheel was off to install the KTM Hardparts "Organic" rear brake pads. I am not a "brake dragger" so wear is not an issue for me.
But the organic brake pads have a hugely smoother feel and help change your rear KTM brake from a "toggle switch" to something that you can actually modulate!
Which is a huge help on our nasty, nose-bleed downhills in the Pacific Northwest.

Swapping the pads is very straight-forward and is documented in the KTM Owner's Manual.

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TIP: Push the brake caliper "sideways" in the floating mount to help force the brake piston back into the caliper and get more room for inserting the new pads.
But be gentle! It only takes a little bit of force. Please be careful and don't get carried away.

IMPORTANT! Remember to pump your rear brake lever a couple of times to be sure that your brake pressure is back up and the rear brake is ready to use.
You do *NOT* want to do that pump-up step as you're hurtling towards the stop sign on a busy street. Gaaa-a-accKKK!!! :shock:

TIP: After installing your rear wheel, place an socket extension in between the sprocket and chain ... and then firmly rotate back the rear wheel. This will take the slack out of the chain and force the rear wheel against your chain adjusters.
That is, it makes sure that the rear wheel is firmly seated against the adjuster blocks. You can then go ahead and torque your rear wheel nut to 59 ft./lbs.
*DO* use a torque wrench as the aluminum axle spacer *can* be squashed if you're not careful and that will put an undue load on your wheel bearings.

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Now it's time to install the front wheel. Put a *very* thin coat of Bel-Ray Waterproof Grease on the inside surface of the fork stubs.
Just enough so that it isn't bare metal. This will help with assembly and avoid corrosion.

TIP: The first time that you install the front wheel, tilt the bike to the left so that the master cylinder for the front brake is the highest point in your braking system.
That is, make sure that the master cylinder is higher than the curve of the brake line. Then VERY GENTLY ... LIGHTLY flick the front brake lever a couple of times.
This helps dislodge any trapped air bubbles in the brake line or in the banjo bolt on the master cylinder (MC) and let them migrate into the MC reservoir.
AND I SAY GENTLY BECAUSE THERE IS NOTHING FROM KEEPING YOUR BRAKE PADS IN PLACE! So be careful, eh bunky?

I then take a "contact-cleaner cleaned" screwdriver and carefully and gently, and evenly, force the brake pads apart and drive the brake piston back into the brake caliper.
But gently ... and just a little bit! You do not want to force or damage the seals on the brake piston or drive excessive brake fluid back into the master cylinder.
IMPORTANT! Use too much force and you'll force brake fluid past a seal somewhere.
Doing this step helps get any trapped air bubbles out of the brake caliper and brake line ... and allows room for the brake rotor to slip into place.

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TIP: When inserting the either front or rear wheel, make you don't drag the brake rotor across or against any metal surface that has grease on it.
'Cause that would be bad for braking ... m'ka-a-y-y?

Using a wrench to hold the axle and a torque wrench, I tightened the front axle to 33.2 ft./lbs.
I do *not* tighten the fork stub bolts at this time ... that will wait until we have the bike on the ground.
I then put a piece of tape on the gas tank that said, "Fork stubs not tight" to remind me to do that later.
I then spun the front wheel a couple of times to make sure it turned freely and then applied the front brake a couple of times to make sure that it was working properly as well.
Better to discover an issue in the garage ... than out on the street, eh bunky? :ride
"AYHIN"

Mine: '12 KTM 350 EXC-F (Wee Beasty); '99 Honda VFR 800i Interceptor
Wife's: '08 KTM 250 XCF-W, '04 Honda CBR600 F4i

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Re: 2012 KTM 350 EXC-F: Building the perfect "Wee Beasty"

Postby E-Ticket » Sat Dec 31, 2011 11:22 pm

Continued on with the close "eye-ballin" and found another small thang. One of the sides of the rear graphic was a bit off-center.
Not bad - but enough that a pressure washer was going to catch it sooner or later.

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Got out Mr. Harbor Fright Heat-Gun-Thingy and 'v-e-w-y, v-ew-y carefoowy' ... using the minimum of heat possible ... warmed up the graphic enough so that the adhesive soften.
This allowed me to vary carefully "smooge" the tip of the graphic sideways so that it lined up better with the fender line. Yay!! You can only use this trick under very limited circumstances - but it worked great here.

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It was then that I was reminded of just how dangerous Mr. Harbor Fright Heat-Gun-Thingy is.
While still holding the graphic in position until it fully cooled, I was gently lowering the heat gun to the garage floor.
Unbeknownst to me, it was slowly rotating and the tip came around and *just barely* touched my leg.
WHOLEY CRAP!!! owoowowowowow....
Hopped over to the sink and ran cold water on it for quite a while. owowow. I mean, it just *barely* made contact!

So I know have a really cool Chinese ideogram branded on my calf. I looked up on Da Google for it's meaning.
It apparently stands for: "What a dumb butt." Just lovely ..... j-u-s-t lovely. What a maroon.

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Next up was the kickstand. Due to the EXC-F being street legal - it has to meet various safety guidelines.
One of which is the STOOPID spacer on the kickstand bolt to turn the kickstand into a "I wanna' be a Ducati when I grow up" unit.
As in, when you pick up the bike, the kickstand automatically retracts.
It does this so some maroon won't ride off with the kickstand down, crash on their first left-hand corner, and sue KTM. But dang it's frustrating!!

But wait! KTM *HAS* BEEN LISTENING TO US....!!"
The owner's kit contains a small bag of bolts ... one of which is the correct-sized bolt .... already Loc-tited... for the kickstand. Woo-hooo!!! That is so freeking cool!

Here's the kickstand as delivered. You can see how the kickstand spring has to wrap around the long spacer in it's way?
That's what turns it into a Ducati kickstand. So get out the big Torx sockets and the breaker bar and remove that bolt and spacer.

TIP: On new, Loc-Tited bolts, especially the bigger bolts/screws that have medium Loc-Tite on them ... use a 1/2" drive ratchet or breaker bar the first time that you remove them.
This way, you have max control over the wrench and bolt ... and will reduce the possibility of having the wrench/socket twist in your hands and booger up the bolt head.
It also helps the hit the head of the bolt with the heat gun and soften up the Loc-Tite. But be careful! You don't want to melt your bike or bubble your paint!

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TIP: To remove the kickstand:
1) Put the bike on a stand, leave the spring in place
2) Put the kickstand in the upright position.
3) Remove the mounting bolt.
4) Grab the kickstand with both hands, and lift it straight "out" towards you, and the kickstand will slip right off.
It takes a bit of muscle and focus - but it's much easier than futzing around with the spring.

Here's the length difference between the bolts and dreaded spacer. Stock bolt is on the left ... "optional" bolt is on the right.
Hang onto the longer bolt - it can make a good emergency spare for your subframe!
You can use the spacer for your charm bracelet.

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And yup ... not enough grease. Clean thoroughly and liberally apply Bel-Ray WPG.

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Grease the kickstand mounting stub on the frame, the washer, then re-hook the spring(s) and re-install the kickstand.
Pull on the kickstand so that it lines up with the mounting stub and it should slip right on if you're properly aligned.
Clean off the excess grease, install the shorter bolt (minus the spacer!), properly re-torque and you're back in business!
Now the spring can clear the bolt head and it acts like a normal kickstand.

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I like to remove and grease the foot peg pivots due to our wet/muddy riding conditions.
No real black art here ... just use Bel-Ray WPG in the right spots.
The big trick is installing the springs without losing an eye or finger! Yowza ... a lot of potential in that little coil of wire.

Tip: Get some thick gloves, a centering screwdriver, a vise, and a couple of zip-ties.
Moving slowly and carefully ... compress the spring .... and tightening the zip-tie as you go ... you can get to a point where the spring is almost completely compressed.
Carefully back off the vise jaws, carry the spring over and slide it into place, and insert the foot peg and pivot bolt.
When everything is *fully* in place, you can use side-cutters and cut the zip-tie and simply pull it free.
Put on the washer, install and bend the cotter pin, and you're done!

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It's very easy and works like a champ.
And we'll ignore the fact that it took me 15-20 minutes and 433 zip-ties to accomplish the above task. LOL!
"Almost ... almost .... dang-it! Zip-tie slipped again! arghhh...." :D

UPDATE!
A big thank you to "Jeb" on KTMTalk.com for pointing me to a *much* easier way to install the footpeg springs.
Thanks, Jeb! And to Mr. Jeff Slavens as well for the following video. Cheers!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TgEBRGSo7ZU&feature=player_embedded
Last edited by E-Ticket on Sun Jan 01, 2012 10:14 am, edited 2 times in total.
"AYHIN"

Mine: '12 KTM 350 EXC-F (Wee Beasty); '99 Honda VFR 800i Interceptor
Wife's: '08 KTM 250 XCF-W, '04 Honda CBR600 F4i

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Re: 2012 KTM 350 EXC-F: Building the perfect "Wee Beasty"

Postby E-Ticket » Sat Dec 31, 2011 11:32 pm

Time to pull Mr. Gas Tank.
It's the usual KTM drill. The only differences are the quick-disconnect coupler for the fuel line and the power connector for the fuel pump.

First off, remove the bolt securing the seat - it's under the rear fender.

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Now's a good time to disconnect the power to the fuel pump:

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Then the center bolt and rubber roller holding down the gas tank:

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And then remove the two bolts holding your shrouds against the radiators. The right-hand bolt also secures the horn bracket.
Note: I plan on relocating the horn at a later date because it's a real PITA to deal with every time that you want to take off the gas tank. Arghh!

Before removing the gas tank I took off the gas cap. UGHH-H-H...!! Geez, it's a super tight fit.
Do make sure that you press down *very* firmly on the lock-release button as you're trying to turn the gas cap.
I've heard that some peeps had some gas cap/tank fitting issues. But mine was just super tight.

Tip: Spray some silicone onto a paper towel and then wipe the rubber gasket seal on the gas cap.

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I then installed and removed the gas cap several times ... it helped a lot.

Inspected the opening and found some plastic flashing left from the manufacturing process.

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Used some tweezers and removed everything that could be removed without getting too crazy.

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Took some peeks down the mystery hole at the "blue" gas at the bottom of the tank.

Right-hand side:

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Left-hand side with fuel pump:

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It was then that I noticed some dried, scale-like deposits on the sides of the tank. What the heck...?! :(
Well, this is exactly the kind of crap out of the bike before I start riding it.

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Here are some shots looking further into the tank showing the dried "stuff" on the walls of the tank.
Hmmm ..... Left over mold-release from when tank is made? Splashed up and dried-on fuel stabilizer?
Dunno. But me no likey!

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Well, that stuff ... what ever it is ... is coming out!
"AYHIN"

Mine: '12 KTM 350 EXC-F (Wee Beasty); '99 Honda VFR 800i Interceptor
Wife's: '08 KTM 250 XCF-W, '04 Honda CBR600 F4i

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Re: 2012 KTM 350 EXC-F: Building the perfect "Wee Beasty"

Postby E-Ticket » Sat Dec 31, 2011 11:42 pm

Here's a view looking from the bottom ... upward ... of the space between the engine and the gas tank where the charcoal canister resides:

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Here's the quick-disconnect coupler for the fuel line. It's very easy to take apart!

You simply depress the silver button ... while gently pulling on the bottom connector and it pops right out.
TIP: Be sure that you pull "straight" out to avoid having the metal flange on the coupler nick the o-ring.

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A little bit of gas will come out when you disconnect it - but not very much.
Still a good idea to have a paper towel ready.

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Then you simply slide the supplied silicon cap over the male fitting:

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And insert the o-ring plug into the female end of the quick-disconnect.
It helps to depress the release button while you are snapping it into place:

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And ta-da ...!
You have just greatly reduced your odds of getting any dirt/dust/crap into your injector while your tank is off.

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A side view of the 'tree-fiddy' with it's tank off. It's pretty busy with all of the emissions stuff, eh!

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Close-up of the charcoal canister:
GEEZ ... IT'S HUGE!!
Man, that has got to be costing some gas capacity. :(
Hmm ... I wonder if the 350 XCF-W gas tank has more fuel capacity? :idea:

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The long, lateral tube below the charcoal canister is the fresh air injector for the exhaust port.
The aluminum canister on the left contains a reed valve that is opened and closed by pressure changes in the exhaust port/pipe. It sucks in fresh air into a cavity just above the exhaust port and into the exhaust pipe.
This fresh air source helps burn any remaining un-burned fuel left over from the combustion process.
In positive pressure cycles, the reed valve closes and nothing happens.

The reed valve canister is connected to a long rubber tube connected to a small canister (just above the thermal sensor on the head) that contains an air filter material. This helps ensure dust-n-crap aren't sucked through the reed valve.

The whole assembly is a "passive fresh-air system. That is, it is not powered .... or connected to any other part of the emissions system. The entire unit is called the Secondary Air System (SAS).

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Top view looking down:
The rubber tank pad on the frame backbone is very nice!

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Yah ... there *is* an FI throttle body in there ... somewhere! lol.

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On the *bottom* of the throttle body, there is a solenoid-controlled valve that controls air flow to the nipple on the intake manifold (located on the right side of the engine).
This somehow controls how emission gases get sucked into the engine and burned. But I am not exactly sure how or *when* it works.
One side of the valve routes gases from the charcoal canister ... and the other end is connected to the intake manifold ... which sucks the fumes into the engine to be burned.

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Side view:

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Busy place in there, eh? Glad we're not having to change the carb needle in there!! :^)

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Last edited by E-Ticket on Tue Jan 17, 2012 4:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"AYHIN"

Mine: '12 KTM 350 EXC-F (Wee Beasty); '99 Honda VFR 800i Interceptor
Wife's: '08 KTM 250 XCF-W, '04 Honda CBR600 F4i

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Re: 2012 KTM 350 EXC-F: Building the perfect "Wee Beasty"

Postby E-Ticket » Sun Jan 01, 2012 11:31 am

Now that the tank is off busy drying .. time to check out the innards of the wee beasty ...

KTM has improved the air box *so* much on the 2012 bikes!
You can tell they put a lot of time in figuring out how to keep more water/mud out of the air box, reducing the lips on the edges of the air box so it it's easier to install and remove the air filter, and on and on. Very impressed!

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Little things like stamping "Up" on the air filter to help out newbies ... and the less-observant amongst us. (grin)
Woops ... I see some wires dangling down on the air filter - will need to dress those up with some zip-ties.

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Battery box:

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The Japanese manufacturers have better get busy on improving their bike designs .... or the Euros are going to leave them in their dust!

Look at how they use the plastic on the air box to route any water coming over the back of fender down the sides of the air box and not just dump it straight in as on earlier models. Very nice!

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And the bottom of the seat has some matching wings to help route/guide water and mud as well.

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Fuse box for the FI, fuel pump, turn signals, etc.

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The ECU is very well mounted and easy to get at.

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"AYHIN"

Mine: '12 KTM 350 EXC-F (Wee Beasty); '99 Honda VFR 800i Interceptor
Wife's: '08 KTM 250 XCF-W, '04 Honda CBR600 F4i

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Re: 2012 KTM 350 EXC-F: Building the perfect "Wee Beasty"

Postby E-Ticket » Sun Jan 01, 2012 11:35 am

Now, we'll just swing around and get some pics of the right side of the wee beasty ...

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Here's a shot of the throttle cables against the rubber tank roller.
If you're not careful when putting on the tank, you can trap, squish, or crimp the throttle cables.

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TIP: Use a small zip-tie and pull the throttle cables closer to the frame.

Caution!! You don't want to bend the throttle cables or tie them down too tight.
If you do that, you can definitely affect your throttle action! Just pull them in enough so that they are clear of the tank roller.

Wick and snap the throttle a couple of times to make sure that your throttle action is still smooth.
Turn the handlebars to the right lock ... and left lock .... and wick the throttle a couple more times.
Because you don't want to discover that you have a "sticky" throttle out on the street or trails, eh!

Another reason that fuel injection rocks? No accelerator pump!
So you can play with the throttle all day long and not flood the engine. N-i-i-c-e-e-eee .....

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TIP: Spray a little silicon on to a paper towel and wipe it on the tank rollers.
This will help the gas tank slide on easier over the tank rollers when you put it back on.

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Now it's back over the left side of the Wee Beasty and start looking inside of her.

Pulled the air cleaner to make sure that the filter was correctly installed on the backfire-screen/frame. Looked good.
Air filter was oiled fairly well! Plenty enough for winter riding where we pretty much have *zero* dust.

Image
"AYHIN"

Mine: '12 KTM 350 EXC-F (Wee Beasty); '99 Honda VFR 800i Interceptor
Wife's: '08 KTM 250 XCF-W, '04 Honda CBR600 F4i

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Re: 2012 KTM 350 EXC-F: Building the perfect "Wee Beasty"

Postby E-Ticket » Sun Jan 01, 2012 11:38 am

And now ..... get ready for the "E-Ticket ride" into the belly of the wee beast ....

[Editor's Note: For the following special effect to work ... you have to scroll rapidly down the page of pics.
Sorry, but it's the best we could do with our very limited budget for "extras" like special effects.)]

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Hey ... I told you we had a limited budget ... (grin)

On the Euro bikes, there is an intake restrictor just before the butterfly valve. It's like looking through a low-flow, shower head restrictor.
Fortunately, we do not have that on the US EXC models. You can look into throttle body and directly see the "butterfly" throttle valve

Just below the intake throat for the throttle body is a little sub-chamber.
That's where the air temp/density (?) sensor resides.

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TIP: Take your time and be careful when re-installing the air filter!

It's *much* easier to install than the older-style filters -- but there is a new tongue-n-groove arrangement on the rear of the filter cage and the air boot.
With a light in the right spot - you can look down inside the filter and see them engage before fully inserting the air filter.
It shouldn't be an issue - but it doesn't hurt to be extra careful the first time or two.
You can see the engagement point in the following pic:

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Then after installing the retaining bail -- remember to look/feel around the edges of the filter to make sure everything is sealed up good.
"AYHIN"

Mine: '12 KTM 350 EXC-F (Wee Beasty); '99 Honda VFR 800i Interceptor
Wife's: '08 KTM 250 XCF-W, '04 Honda CBR600 F4i

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Re: 2012 KTM 350 EXC-F: Building the perfect "Wee Beasty"

Postby E-Ticket » Sun Jan 01, 2012 11:48 am

Yay!! It's Shorai Battery time!!

The stock battery that comes in the 2012 KTM 350 EXC-F (US) is the: Yuasa YTX4L-BS ... 2.9 lbs .... CCA: 50

The battery that I put in my '08 KTM 450 EXC-R, and is in my '10 Husaberg FE 390 is the: Yuasa YTX7L-BS ... 5.1 lbs .... CCA: 100

The Shorai battery that I now have in the Wee Beasty is the: LFX14L2-BS12 .... 1.61 lbs ..... CCA: 210

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I went with the larger Shorai battery as I plan to run the lower-temperature thermo sensor for my radiator fan and also heated grips.
Even with the much larger-capacity battery ... it is still 1.29 lbs lighter! And that's weight being removed from the top of the bike which will have an even greater impact.
Yes, it is more expensive. But the specs differences are amazing. :^)
I plan on selling the stock battery to help offset the extra cost of the Shorai. See how easy it is to justify? (g)

The Shorai battery comes in a small cardboard container ... and is surrounded by about 14 different-shaped, adhesive-back foam pads.
These foam pads are necessary because the Shorai battery is *much* smaller than the standard lead-acid Yuasa battery.
You'll need to do some playing and "dry-fitting" to figure out the best combo of foam pads so the Shorai battery fits snugly in the battery box.

Installation TIP: When inserting the pads ... only pull one corner of the paper backing away to start with.
Get it properly stuck down .... pull some backing away .... stick that portion down ... and so on.
If you take all the backing off at one time - it will stick to everything as you try to insert it.

Also, leave the paper backing in place where it won't be touching the battery box.
This will keep dirt from sticking to the adhesive. Here is my final setup:

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The Shorai battery not only comes with TWO sets of battery bolts -- but they already have foam stuck on the bottom of the nuts!!
This is a trick I use to help hold up the nuts so that you can screw in the battery bolts. The fact that it *comes* that way is just too cool.

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Install the Shorai battery in the battery box. Make sure that it is fully inserted and all the way in.

I kind of freaked out for a moment when I realized that the positive (+) and negative (-) terminals on the Shorai battery were on opposite sides from the stock Yuasa!!
But after a bit of looking and noodling - it makes everything even better!
I had to un-bolt the negative cable and re-route both battery cables so that they came from *behind* the battery box .... and then they hooked right up to the Shorai terminals.
Even better yet - with this routing -- they are completely out of the way of the air box area!

IMPORTANT!!! DO NOT OVER-TIGHTEN THE BATTERY TERMINALS!
You need to get them snug and tight -- but be very careful about not over-torqueing the bolts.
It looks like it would be easy to break the joint/seal between the terminals and the battery case.

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After a final inspection, I decided to take some of the foam padding and place a chunk on the sub-frame where the positive (+) battery cable touched it.
There was no force on it - but did not want to chance a chafing situation and have a short.

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I turned on the ignition switch and gave the horn a quick beep to be sure power was connected. Coolio, man. :^)
"AYHIN"

Mine: '12 KTM 350 EXC-F (Wee Beasty); '99 Honda VFR 800i Interceptor
Wife's: '08 KTM 250 XCF-W, '04 Honda CBR600 F4i

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Re: 2012 KTM 350 EXC-F: Building the perfect "Wee Beasty"

Postby E-Ticket » Mon Jan 02, 2012 7:16 pm

Then as a final step - I used some zip-ties and dressed up all the loose wires to avoid contact/chafing on the air filter.
Also makes it easier when removing the air filter if all that 'hangy' stuff doesn't get in your way.

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Ahh-h-h .... that's better!

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Add a small patch of Gorilla Tape to secure the big wire on the back side of the air box.
TIP: Use some rubbing alcohol and paper towel and really scrub the mounting point to remove any surface smooge so your tape will stick better.

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Time to re-install the seat. Be sure that you properly catch the front bolt-standoff and fully hook the mid-point hooks.
Then make sure that your seat matches up with the mounting bolt on the sub-fender.
When you seat is installed correctly - you can give the rear top of it a small, downward "pop" with your hand and hear it snap into place.
Then you know your mounting bolt will go in smoothly.

TIP: Put a little anti-seize on the threads of the mounting bolt as it is going into steel threads and will be removed on a regular basis.

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Seat mounting bolt installed:

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TIP: Place a small square of duct tape over the bolt opening.
This keeps the bolt head clean for easy removal.
Plus it is *SO* nice to reach up under your muddy fender ... pull the tape off .... and have this beautiful "clean spot." LOL!
Hey! It's the little things that make life easier! (grin)

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One last check of remaining things to do while the bike is on the stand ... oops! How about checking the radiator for coolant!
Yup ... I see about 10 mm of coolant just above the internal fins. That is about perfect.
Any more coolant and you don't have enough room for expansion when the coolant gets hot -- and it will have to burp out the excess.

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Okay, re-install the radiator cap (make sure it is fully on and seated!) and take the Wee Beasty off of the bike stand.
"AYHIN"

Mine: '12 KTM 350 EXC-F (Wee Beasty); '99 Honda VFR 800i Interceptor
Wife's: '08 KTM 250 XCF-W, '04 Honda CBR600 F4i

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Re: 2012 KTM 350 EXC-F: Building the perfect "Wee Beasty"

Postby E-Ticket » Mon Jan 02, 2012 7:28 pm

Since I've moved on to new items on the bike - I always try to remember to check the handlebars for any notes to myself.

Ah, yes!
Found the one that says, "Fork stubs not tight."
Which is why we write reminder notes -- you don't how long it might be between loosening something ... and tightening it back up.
And it's much better to find that out in the garage ... versus the street, trails, or on the track. Ayup.

Had the Flying Ant come out to the garage to help torque the fork stub bolts. (see your Owner's Manual for torque specs.)
Here's my routine - I think it helps ensure that the forks are tracking each other in parallel lines.
It also helps avoid the front brake binding the fork leg sideways when the brake is applied.

1) Tighten/torque the axle nut. (I always do this right after I insert the axle. So this was already done for me.)
NOTE: The bolts for *both* the left and right fork stubs are loose at this point.

2) Sitting on the seat of the bike, apply the front brake, and plunge forward forcing the forks to go up and down several times.
Try to get as much fork action as you can - this helps center the fork legs on the axle.

3) Stop plunging up and down -- but keep the brake applied.

4) Have your able assistant torque the bolts on the LEFT-HAND fork stub. That is ... the bolts on the brake caliper side.
TIP: Remember to tighten each bolt a little, then the other one, and back and forth until they're tight.
This helps ensure an even clamping force on the axle and is just easier on your aluminum fork stubs.

5) Release the front brake. Re-apply the front brake and plunge the forks up and down again several times.

6) While still holding the front brake on ... tighten the bolts on the right-hand fork stub.
And you should be good to go!

Time to install some bling from the "fun stuff box" ...woo-hoo!
Let's see ... let's start with the KTM Hard-Parts quick--release (QR), poly skid plate.
The mounting instructions are pretty clear and complete, so I'll just mention a couple of tips.

First step, install the stainless steel mounting bracket ... but leave the bolts slightly loose so it can still move around.

Then take some rubbing alcohol and wipe down the bottom of the frame tubes where the skid plate will touch.
This helps ensure that the adhesive-backed, foam strips will stick well to the frame.
Then it's just using your head, taking your time, and getting the foam strips lined up and mounted.

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TIP: Mount the skid plate (the mounting bolts are still loose) and put your scoot back on the stand.
The weight of the bike will help mold the skid plate to the frame.

You can then push *IN*on the front, top-edge of the skid plate, hold the mounting bracket in place, and firmly tighten the mounting bolts.
This really helps take out any "slop" between the frame and the plastic skid plate so that it take big rock hits without being torn off.

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TIP: Put a strip of Gorilla Tape over the QR bail on the skid plate. This accomplishes a couple of things.
a) It keeps the QR bail from being snagged and pulled off. Or vibrating itself to death and falling off.
b) It is a big pleasure after a major muddy day ... to simply pull off the tape ... and see a perfectly clean bail. :^)
Which makes it no-brainer easy to pop off the skid plate when hosing off the mud with a power washer.

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Oh my ... :D we're actually getting close to riding the Wee Beasty for the first time. Woo-hoo! :ride

Checked and verified that the oil level is correct. Checked it with both wheels on level ground, bike upright, and engine cold.
Yup .... just sitting a tad over the halfway mark on the sight glass:

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"AYHIN"

Mine: '12 KTM 350 EXC-F (Wee Beasty); '99 Honda VFR 800i Interceptor
Wife's: '08 KTM 250 XCF-W, '04 Honda CBR600 F4i

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Re: 2012 KTM 350 EXC-F: Building the perfect "Wee Beasty"

Postby knobbyknife » Tue Jan 03, 2012 5:22 pm

hey Randy, can i break that thing in for you.?

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Re: 2012 KTM 350 EXC-F: Building the perfect "Wee Beasty"

Postby E-Ticket » Tue Jan 03, 2012 7:11 pm

knobbyknife wrote:hey Randy, can i break that thing in for you.?

I am overwhelmed by your generous offer, sir. But I will to have to pass. :lol:
"AYHIN"

Mine: '12 KTM 350 EXC-F (Wee Beasty); '99 Honda VFR 800i Interceptor
Wife's: '08 KTM 250 XCF-W, '04 Honda CBR600 F4i

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Re: 2012 KTM 350 EXC-F: Building the perfect "Wee Beasty"

Postby wobs » Wed Jan 04, 2012 12:52 pm

Man that footpeg install is too easy. Can't tell you the number of springs I shot across the garage! Nice write up.
Your freedom to be you includes my freedom to be free from you.

'11 KTM300XC Plated


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