Thursday, October 31, 2013

Hydraulic clutch fluid

Sitting at a long red light yesterday, I began to stare at the dingy, dirty colour of the hydraulic fluid in the clutch reservoir. On my noon hour, I zipped over to the local KTM dealer -- a very small shop called KTM  GST-Shop. The owner seems like a real hardcore KTM dude, with a motocross and supermoto background. There is a much bigger KTM dealer in Berlin, but a little further away and not enough time to get there on my lunch break. I'll take a ride some Saturday.

I picked up a bottle of Magura Blood mineral oil for the clutch, and while I was there, I also grabbed the KTM factory 18mm handlebar mount riser kit (identical to this). I spent about 30 minutes flushing out the old grimey fluid this evening an refilling with the fresh Magura oil. Went for a very quick test ride and the clutch pull does feel a little better. I plan to do the same for the front and rear brake fluid over the winter.

While I was in the mood to spend $$, I also bought a 16-tooth front sprocket. The '06-'07 Super Duke came stock with 17/38 gearing, while models from '08 and newer have had 16/38. I have found the gearing on my '06 to be very tall ...... let the clutch out in first gear just fast enough to get rolling  (forget about accelerating) and by the time the bike is in motion, you're already doing 35-40 km/hr. Very hard to manage at low speeds in traffic -- requires lots of feathering the clutch. So, a 16-tooth sprocket should make things more rideable -- or so I thought. 

So, tonight as I removed the countershaft sprocket, I happened to notice there was already an aftermarket JT 16-tooth on there. Shit @%#! ...  I guess the previous owner beat me to it. But even still, it's geared very tall, I find. Many folks on the forum say that 16/40 or 16/41 gearing is the best compromise for street riding. I guess I may look at replacing the rear 38 with a 40 or 41 at some point.  I did check and the original 38-tooth is definitely on the rear.