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KTM EXC and SX

  2017 KTM300exc

 

KTM85SX Suggestions:

We have done a HUGE amount of testing and development on these engines and have come up with a range of packages to suit novice through to national level riders.

Off the showroom floor these engines can vary a lot from one bike to the next. Although average stock power is around 24.5-25 rwhp on our dyno we often see power on a stock bike varying anywhere from 24-26hp at the rear wheel with big differences in midrange power. This means some bikes are much slower than others which can lead to a lot of frustration from riders and parents wondering why they are much slower than the competition.

This is one engine where it is VERY easy to lose power if you dont know what youre doing. We have seen countless bikes come over our dyno with cylinder porting and all the latest bolt on mods making less torque than a stock bike. The old school methods of porting do not work well on this engine and often result in a loss of power. In order to get the most out of this engine it needs to be set up VERY carefully and a range of key changes need to be made.

After hunderds of hours of dyno testing we have developed a range of mods and packages which dramatically improve this engine. Our highest level setups offer world championship power levels and are a must for any rider serious about a state or national championship. Likewise our lower level setups offer cost effective improvements for recreational riders and club racers without risking reliability. Please contact us to discuss which package would suit your situation.

CLUB is the minimum we suggest for any form of competition
PRO is the minimum we suggest for competetive club/state level riders
CHAMPION is the minimum we suggest for competetive national level riders

*Cost does not include return freight.

 Package Gains Mods  Cost*
Club Everywhere, much crisper response, more power at peak with better overrev. Head setup, new CDI, Carb mods and rejet.
Send us only the head and carb.
$675
Expert Everywhere, much crisper response, more through the mid and at peak with better overrev. Club mods + Cylinder porting.
Send us only the head, carb and cylinder.
$975
Pro Everywhere, much better mid, more at peak with better overrev. VERY competetive package without needing to strip the whole engine. Expert mods + custom handmade TSP pipe and new reed cage.
Send us only the head, carb and cylinder.
$1800
Champion Everywhere, WAY more mid and top with better overrev. This thing makes world class power and absolutely HAULS! Pro mods + full engine strip down and rebuild, case mods, special TSP piston machining and matching head design, crank mods and dyno tune with results.
New gaskets, new seals and all labour included in the price. New piston, bearings, con rod/crank are not included and will be quoted depending on the condition of the engine when stripped.
Send us the whole engine and carb.
$2850
 Ultimate Everywhere, WAY more mid and top with better overrev. Its called the ULTIMATE for a good reason! Champion mods (inc dyno tuning) + superfinished transmission, ceramic bearings and custom reed cage.
New gaskets, new seals and all labour included in the price. New piston, bearings, con rod/crank are not included and will be quoted depending on the condition of the engine when stripped.
Send us the whole engine and carb.
 $3900

 

KTM125/150 SX and EXC Suggestions:

2016/2017 models
The new 125 engine is very well designed and makes huge power for a stock 125. Best mods for 16/17 are head setup (adds ~2hp up top and nice gains through the mid) and some sensible cylinder porting. The stock cylinder casting is very good and so theres not much to be gained just by cleaning things up. If you want to get even more power you’ll need to do advanced porting (altering port heights/widths) to get improvements to mid/top power.

GREEN is the minimum we suggest for this model
BLUE is our top pick for MX

Before 2016
The KTM 125 engine up to 2015 is very strong and responds very well to some sensible mods. The overall cylinder design is good but there are lots of casting issues that can be cleaned up to improve power everywhere. Also, careful powervalve setup is critical to getting the most from this engine. The EXC model shares the same basic engine but with a softer ignition curve and smaller 36mm carb. For this model we suggest fitting an SX CDI and oval boring the carb to give better top end. Basic mods to this engine plus one of our own custom pipes will see 41rwhp with no loss of bottom end power.

GREEN is the minimum we suggest for this model
RED is our top pick for trail/enduro
BLUE is our top pick for MX

Gains Mods
Package 1 Bottom-Mid Setup head
Package 2 Everywhere Setup head + standard porting
Package 3 Everywhere Setup head + standard porting (+ carb oval bore for pre 2016 EXC model)
Package 4 Everywhere, especially mid-top Setup head +  Advanced porting (+ carb oval bore and SX CDI for pre 2016 EXC model).

 

KTM200EXC Suggestions:

The KTM200 EXC engine is basically a bored and stroked 125 with a relatively soft power delivery for offroad use. There is loads of potential for more power from this engine if the right mods are done. The minimum that should be done is setting up the head correctly to give much better bottom-mid without losing anything up top. The cylinder casting has a lot if issues that can be easily fixed to give more power everywhere. The 36mm carb can benefit from an oval bore for much better top end. We’ve seen several KTM200’s leave the showroom floor with as little as 30rwhp. Sensible mods can see it make over 41rwhp without any loss of reliability… much more power can be made if you add advanced porting to this setup. The stock exhaust is fine.

For electric start models we strongly suggest adding our KTM Iginition Mod to any of the packages listed below for even better power throughout the rev range

GREEN is the minimum we suggest for this model
RED is our top pick for normal trail/enduro
BLUE gives the best spread of power and is our top pick for racing or serious trail riders

Gains Mods
Package 1 Bottom-Mid Setup head
Package 2 Everywhere Setup head + standard porting
Package 3 Everywhere Setup head + standard porting + KTM ignition mod (elec start models only)
Package 4 Everywhere, gives broadest spread of power Setup head + advanced porting + carb oval bore + KTM ignition mod (elec start models only)

 

KTM250 SX and EXC Suggestions:

2017 models
The new 250/300 engine is very well designed and makes decent power, however there are some small issues with this engine that have a huge impact on how it runs. The biggest complaint we get is that low end power is very spluttery and weak and fuel economy is very bad. Its fairly common for stock bikes to get less than 60kms out of a tank. The 2 key areas that need addressing are the head (stock squish clearance is ridiculous, around 2mm), and the carb. The new Mikuni carb is great at wide open throttle but they dont run nearly as well as the older Keihin at part throttle. Getting smooth part throttle running is hard with this carb but it can be done… Stock jetting is way off and none of the jets/needles that are supplied in the spares kit are even close to being correct.
We suggest setting up the head properly and rejetting the Mikuni as a minimum for this bike. This makes a huge difference to how the bike runs and dramatically improves low/mid power as well as fuel economy. The JD jetting kit for the 2017 models seems to work well. Opening up the airbox will add extra hp up top but do this at your own risk as these bikes are still very prone to taking in dust. Our ignition mod is simple and cheap and adds a noticable amount of power from bottom to top with no risk to reliability.

Busting some 2017 KTM myths…
There is a HUGE amount of rubbish going around the net regarding the 2017 KTMs.  Unfortunately a lot of it is aimed at selling unnecessary products to uneducated riders so do yourself a favour and get some advice from someone who knows their stuff before buying some of these expensive “instant fix” products.
The stock reeds are absolutley fine, having a small air gap between the petal and the seat in still air has almost no bearing on what the petal will be doing when its opening and closing 100 times a second whilst covered in a film of oil. Dont replace the stock carbon fibre petals with the 1970’s tech fibreglass ones that are being sold on the net and advertised on youtube… they have a completely incorrect resonant frequency for this engine and are a big backwards step.
If you want to swap carbs on this bike then our suggestions is to consider fitting a short body Keihin PWK from an earlier model KTM (36mm) or a YZ250 (38mm), or a new long body PWK from your local dealer. This makes a massive difference to part throttle running. There’s loads of accurate info about jetting these carbs to suit these bikes on the net and it will be a quick and easy install for most peaople. Fitting other aftermarket carbs that are marketed as “bolt on and forget” and “no need to adjust for temp/elevation” are usually not so straight forward in our experience… We have extensively dyno tested these carbs and have run them on our own bikes in the past. Take it from us… ALL carbs need proper setting up and constant adjustment for changing conditions, there is no way around this.
If you want the best value for money results then keep the stock reeds, setup the head and either jet the stock carb as best you can or fit a PWK. Anything else will simply cost you more.

Up to 2016 Models
For the SX models we strongly suggest setting up the head (especially on the 2014+ models), plus a carb oval bore and our standard porting (which includes mods the the powervalve). This combination gives nice gains throughout the rev range and up top without sacrificing reliability. Careful jetting and powervalve setup make a big difference. If you really want maximum mid-top power then advanced porting will give you bucket loads of arm pulling power!

For the EXC models we suggest setting up the head at a minimum (especially on the 2014+ models). We do a package of 4 mods which is very popular and completely transforms the 250EXC engine… these mods include head setup, standard porting, ignition mod and a carb oval bore. This is the best value setup you will find anywhere for this engine and makes it pull way harder from idle all the way to redline without sacrificing reliability.

Both EXC and SX model from 2014 onwards were given a different reedcage to previous years. We have seen some of these reedcages fail and suggest upgrading to a V Force reedcage if your eds begin to show signs of chipping or fraying.

GREEN is the minimum we suggest for this model
BLACK is the best bang for your buck setup
RED gives the best spread of power and is our top pick for racing or serious trail riders
BLUE gives the best mid-top without losing bottom end, and is our pick for anyone wanting maximum mid-top.

Gains Mods
Package 1 Bottom-Mid Setup head
Package 2 Everywhere Setup head + ignition mod
Package 3 Everywhere Setup head + standard porting + carb oval bore + KTM ignition mod (elec start EXC models only)
Package 4 Mid-Top Setup head + advanced porting + carb oval bore (not 2017 models) + KTM ignition mod (elec start EXC models only)

 

 

 

KTM300EXC Suggestions:

2017 models
The new 250/300 engine is very well designed and makes decent power, however there are some small issues with this engine that have a huge impact on how it runs. The biggest complaint we get is that low end power is very spluttery and weak and fuel economy is very bad. Its fairly common for stock bikes to get less than 60kms out of a tank. The 2 key areas that need addressing are the head (stock squish clearance is ridiculous, around 2mm), and the carb. The new Mikuni carb is great at wide open throttle but they dont run nearly as well as the older Keihin at part throttle. Getting smooth part throttle running is hard with this carb but it can be done… Stock jetting is way off and none of the jets/needles that are supplied in the spares kit are even close to being correct.
We suggest setting up the head properly and rejetting the Mikuni as a minimum for this bike. This makes a huge difference to how the bike runs and dramatically improves low/mid power as well as fuel economy. The JD jetting kit for the 2017 models seems to work well. Opening up the airbox will add extra hp up top but do this at your own risk as these bikes are still very prone to taking in dust. Our ignition mod is simple and cheap and adds a noticable amount of power from bottom to top with no risk to reliability.

Busting some 2017 KTM myths…
There is a HUGE amount of rubbish going around the net regarding the 2017 KTMs.  Unfortunately a lot of it is aimed at selling unnecessary products to uneducated riders so do yourself a favour and get some advice from someone who knows their stuff before buying some of these expensive “instant fix” products.
The stock reeds are absolutley fine, having a small air gap between the petal and the seat in still air has almost no bearing on what the petal will be doing when its opening and closing 100 times a second whilst covered in a film of oil. Dont replace the stock carbon fibre petals with the 1970’s tech fibreglass ones that are being sold on the net and advertised on youtube… they have a completely incorrect resonant frequency for this engine and are a big backwards step.
If you want to swap carbs on this bike then our suggestions is to consider fitting a short body Keihin PWK from an earlier model KTM (36mm) or a YZ250 (38mm), or a new long body PWK from your local dealer. This makes a massive difference to part throttle running. There’s loads of accurate info about jetting these carbs to suit these bikes on the net and it will be a quick and easy install for most peaople. Fitting other aftermarket carbs that are marketed as “bolt on and forget” and “no need to adjust for temp/elevation” are usually not so straight forward in our experience… We have extensively dyno tested these carbs and have run them on our own bikes in the past. Take it from us… ALL carbs need proper setting up and constant adjustment for changing conditions, there is no way around this.
If you want the best value for money results then keep the stock reeds, setup the head and either jet the stock carb as best you can or fit a PWK. Anything else will simply cost you more.

Up to 2016 Models
KTM made some key changes in 2014 that included a new head design and different reed cage… unfortunately both of these changes have become weak points of the 300 engine based on feedback from our customers. The biggest complaint we get from 300 customers is overly rich jetting from the factory and a blubbery area in the rev range at about 1/4 throttle and at low rpms making it difficult to get power to the ground smoothly. Its not possible to eliminate this issue by rejetting alone… the cylinder head must be recut to a different profile to improve the squish action at low rpms. Once this is done low-mid power is noticably improved and the engine becomes way smoother down low, making it easier to get the power to the ground in difficult conditions.

For the EXC models we suggest setting up the head at a minimum (especially on the 2014-2016 models). We do a package of 4 mods which is very popular and completely transforms the 300EXC engine… these mods include head setup, standard porting, ignition mod and a carb oval bore. This is the best value setup you will find anywhere for this engine and makes it pull way harder from idle all the way to redline without sacrificing reliability. Doing this set of mods will take the engine from approx 49rwhp in stock form to approx 55rwhp with an even gain all the way from idle through to overrev.

If you want maximum top end power then we can offer advanced porting to give over 58rwhp with no loss of bottom end power compared to a stock bike.

GREEN is the minimum we suggest for this model
RED gives the best spread of power and is our top pick for racing or serious trail riders
BLUE gives the best mid-top without losing bottom end, and is our pick for anyone wanting maximum mid-top.

Gains Mods
Package 1 Bottom-Mid Setup head
Package 2 Everywhere Setup head + standard porting
Package 3 Everywhere Setup head + standard porting + carb oval bore + KTM ignition mod (elec start EXC models only)
Package 4 Big gains up top, no loss down low. Setup head + advanced porting + carb oval bore + KTM ignition mod (elec start EXC models only)

 

Or combine your own package of mods:

Mod Gains Price
Head Setup  Everywhere, plus reliability  $250
Standard Porting  Everywhere  $250 plus PV service labour
Advanced Porting  Everywhere, esp mid-top  $350-$400
Carb Oval Bore  Mid-top  $250
Dyno Tuning  Everywhere, plus reliability  $350 for first 3 hours
V Force reedcage  Everywhere, plus throttle response  $240 approx
Big Bore kit  Everywhere, esp bottom-mid  $1300-$1700 approx
Cylinder base machining  Bottom-mid, often slight loss of top  $110
Specialist Labour  Get us to rebuild and tune your engine  $110/hr