Sunday, August 25, 2013

Bar stuff: Mirrors, Instruments and Hand Guards: KTM 350 EXC-F

The stock mirrors are just uncool. Big, heavy and prone to breakage. So I make my own! A bicycle mirror and some hardware store parts:

And a nice little mirror is made!

Mounted up:
 These mirrors actually work pretty well for me. But I'll note my riding is 99% off road, so I don't need them much!

For my riding in the desert I use a Garmin Dakota 20. Usually I map a track out ahead of time with the Basecamp software and then just use the Garmin to follow the track. For me that it works pretty well. But if you don't have a pre-made track it can be pretty hard to use with the small screen. I use a RAM bicycle handlebar mount and it works great. This mount has an easy off feature (for the mount, not the Garmin) that I epoxied in place. I think this is so you can use the mount on different vehicles or bikes but no accidental "easy off" mount for me! But the Dakota still installs and removes from the mount easily.
Also, I really like having a tachometer. Being a long time street rider I can't tell my RPM by ear on the dirt bike. I used a Trail Tech meter and bar mount. (Interestingly, the Trail Tech doesn't keep in synch with the KTM meter, it reads higher.)

You can't tell from these pics, but the Garmin and tach do not block the stock instruments.

I just wrapped the tach wire to the spark plug lead. Works fine:

On hand guards: I really like the Cycra guards. So I ordered up a set with the CRM (Center Reach Mount) system. This system uses a clamp that abuts the bar clamps. Seems like a good idea because the bar is a constant diameter at the center. But... I really wasn't happy with how the clutch line is forced to bend around the mount. I worried a crash could move the mount and damage the clutch line. I also found this interference limited the position I could place the clutch lever and the guard:

I should add that this might also be a problem with some of the mounting systems that are integrated into the handle bar top clamps. Check that out out carefully before you buy.

Fortunately and unfortunately, I immediately had a big smash and actually bent the guards. I used this as an excuse to change to the original style Cycra guards and mount. In this next pic you can see the bar mount for the original style installed to the left of the CRM mount. The original style mount goes right around the clutch line without any interference:

Much better! I also had a bunch of guards at this point so I went for an asymmetrical look:

And of course, I'm always ready for a Zombie attack... so I appropriately stickered the bike!

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