2003 KTM 200SX Refresh

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6/28/2018 5:49 AM

Hey guys, I’ve been a long time lurker around here but just joined to post my first build. I’ve always loved seeing you alls build threads and it’s actually what got me back into the sport after about 10 years away while in high school and college. I picked up a couple bike in the last year and none of them fit what I wanted so I went on the search for what I thought I wanted. A couple weeks later I came home with a roller of a KTM 200SX and styrofoam coolers full of parts. This is what we had to start with.
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It all appeared to be there and didn’t seem to have and major abuse over the time, but the top end was completely destroyed. It looked like the piston had broke a ring and lodged it in a transformer port before coming to an abrupt halt. Cylinder has about. 1/4” deep gouge, the powervalve flap was damaged and of course the head had taken a beating from loose debris bouncing around inside the engine for some amount of time. The good news was that the crank and rod bearings were as tight as could be. Other than this and some broken plastics the rest of the bike looked pretty good for a base build, so after the first night this is what we were left with.

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6/28/2018 6:03 AM
Edited Date/Time: 7/9/2018 1:27 PM

The next order of business was getting the cylinder taken care of. I missed a mint used cylinder on eBay for 200 dollars by just a few minutes, so I sent mine off to PowerSeal for a weld and plate job along with a 1997 RM125 cylinder for another build you may spot in some of my pictures that will be posted at a later date. Four long weeks later we had two shiny cylinders on our doorstep when we got home from work.
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While the cylinder was out I got the bottom end of the engine cleaned up and ready to reassemble when the top end came back. There was a lot of caked on oil and dirt, and I did repaint the flywheel and clutch covers, but underneath all the crud was a pretty good looking engine.
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I figured all these pretty new and cleaned up parts would need a nice frame to hold them together so the frame got cleaned up, sanded down and a fresh coat of metallic silver. This isn’t the factory beige/gold color, but I like it a lot better personally. Here is the end result.
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6/28/2018 6:15 AM

Once the engine was back and put together and all the nasty parts that were taken off the bike were ran through the the parts washer and soda blaster it was time to start making this thing look like a dirt bike again.

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This is where we sat after one night of reassembly which is often interrupted by my other new addition to the family. Trying to get the moto life started early for him too.
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6/28/2018 6:26 AM

Night number two of reassembly got us to a rolling bike again and night three has what appears to be a running bike, but some minor problems popped up at this time.
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First my exhaust springs were the wrong length so I had to get a shorter one, the petcock leaked gas when turned on, the throttle housing was cracked and lastly the clutch oil has some debris in it and wouldn’t bleed. After waiting on parts to arrive from Rocky Mountain (which by the way always amaze me with their free two day delivery) all of these issues were straightened out and I finally had a chance to finish this project up. My wife had her gallbladder taken out yesterday morning, so I had the remainder of the day off of work to take care of her (but more importantly finish up this bike). Here she is seeing sunlight for the first time since I brought her home in February.


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6/28/2018 6:44 AM

It was finally time to breathe life into the bike for the first time in over two years according to the previous owner. Choke on and it starts second kick. What a relief and good feeling after all of the work and money invested. Took her for a short spin up the road and everything worked perfectly. Have a ride day scheduled the 7th of July and I can’t wait to truly test this thing out. This will be my first KTM and I’ve gotta day even on this old of a bike it feels amazing from the 10 minutes I’ve been on it.

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6/28/2018 8:03 AM

SWEEEEEEEEET!!!!

I have an '04 EXC kinda set up for moto and it is a total blast. Those bikes rule!
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6/28/2018 8:46 AM

It’s funny you have the more off road version to use for moto and I have the moto version that I will be using for mainly off road. I’ve heard nothing but good things about both versions though and can’t wait to try mine out on a track as well. Totally forgot until this morning at work that I have an aluminum skid plate bathing in the parts washer I forgot about. I’ll have to get it cleaned up and put on as well.

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6/28/2018 8:59 AM
Edited Date/Time: 6/28/2018 9:03 AM

Yeah, they rule. I have too many bikes but can't bear the thought of selling mine. In the forums, virtually
everyone that says they had one and sold it regrets doing so horribly. laughing laughing laughing

On the subframe, those inserts that the side panels bolt into; keep those threads lubed and don't over-tighten.
If they start spinning it's a pain fix.

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6/28/2018 9:19 AM

I’ll have to throw some anti seize on them when I get the apart again then. Thanks for the tip. A question I do have for anyone that knows, my clutch engages within the first 1/4” of pull. I have the screw on the lever adjusted as short as possible but the clutch engagement point is way out or away from the bars. Is there any way to bring that closer to the bars on a hydro clutch? It sounds funny but it’s almost like I bled it too good haha.

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6/28/2018 9:19 AM

Sounds much more like a 250cc than a 125.

I recall that the airbox on those bikes was pretty leaky, like your airfilter would last all of about 10 minutes. Next time you have the subframe off, seal-up as many gaps as you can.
Also, filter skins help space out the airfilter cleaning intervals.

Congrats on the build and enjoy the ride!

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KTM250SX YZ125 YZ85 PW80 ZX6 FZX700

6/28/2018 10:27 AM

Nice job!

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6/29/2018 7:33 PM

Thanks for the feedback guys, and I have a small update. I got the skid plate on and the second round of engine break in performed last night (going with the Mototune/Motoman method as I have on the last couple bikes with good success). I am having coolant leak from the overflow tube, but I think I may have put too much coolant in the bike to start with. I haven't measured to see if it matches the 10 mm above the fins specification that KTM calls for, but eyeballing the level it seems slightly high. I am taking the bike over to my parents place tomorrow to give it the first ride other than around my yard.

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6/30/2018 11:20 AM

I was about to recommend you find a 200SX pipe for it, until I saw that you’ll be using it for offroad. The difference between the 200SX pipe and a 200MXC/XC/EXC/XCW pipe is huge. Totally different power characteristics.

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7/1/2018 6:45 PM

Moto Mofo wrote:

I was about to recommend you find a 200SX pipe for it, until I saw that you’ll be using it for offroad. The difference between the 200SX pipe and a 200MXC/XC/EXC/XCW pipe is huge. Totally different power characteristics.

I am definitely interested in finding the SX pipe for the bike too. When I first found the bike on Craigslist I was hoping it had the original because I knew it was hard to find now, but unfortunately it had the aftermarket Pro Circuit. If anyone has a lead on the original for a decent price please send it my way.

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7/2/2018 9:29 PM

Moto Mofo wrote:

I was about to recommend you find a 200SX pipe for it, until I saw that you’ll be using it for offroad. The difference between the 200SX pipe and a 200MXC/XC/EXC/XCW pipe is huge. Totally different power characteristics.

Is this specific to the OEM SX pipe? Or would one of the aftermarket 200 SX pipes make the same difference?
I have a Pro Circuit EXC pipe on mine and it is about due to be replaced.

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7/3/2018 1:56 PM

I don’t have any personal experience, but from a couple other builds and threads on here the factory SX pipe is the holy grail. The aftermarket pipes are good, but not the supposed magic of the KTM pipe.

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7/9/2018 1:07 PM

First ride was this past Saturday with a local club here in East Tennessee. We had flood watches all afternoon Friday so needless to say it was a mud fest on the trails, but the bike ran great and I’m super pumped with how it all come out. I did manage to crash down a nasty hill into a creek bed and broke a throttle housing, but managed to limp it back out to the truck. Cleanup was not a fun three hours. Photo
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7/10/2018 2:25 AM

wrvaughn7 wrote:

I don’t have any personal experience, but from a couple other builds and threads on here the factory SX pipe is the holy grail. The aftermarket pipes are good, but not the supposed magic of the KTM pipe.

Is the factory not just a Doma pipe?? Know that Doma we’re doing a lot of the GP teams pipes at that time.

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Now a member of the Orange brigade

7/10/2018 8:00 AM

wrvaughn7 wrote:

I don’t have any personal experience, but from a couple other builds and threads on here the factory SX pipe is the holy grail. The aftermarket pipes are good, but not the supposed magic of the KTM pipe.

shuggs wrote:

Is the factory not just a Doma pipe?? Know that Doma we’re doing a lot of the GP teams pipes at that time.

Yes the factory SXS pipe was made by Doma

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7/10/2018 11:22 AM

wrvaughn7 wrote:

I don’t have any personal experience, but from a couple other builds and threads on here the factory SX pipe is the holy grail. The aftermarket pipes are good, but not the supposed magic of the KTM pipe.

shuggs wrote:

Is the factory not just a Doma pipe?? Know that Doma we’re doing a lot of the GP teams pipes at that time.

JMX82 wrote:

Yes the factory SXS pipe was made by Doma

This is good to know. I really liked the power characteristics of the bike as is for off road but may look into the Doma if I ever hit the track.

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7/21/2018 8:28 PM

Lookin' good! Glad to see you bringing another 200sx back to life. They are awesome bikes, especially for woods riding. Stock pipe is fun but thin as paper. FMF fatty is going to have similar characteristics as stock but tougher. I do know of a guy who has a few stock pipes for sale if youre interested. $200 each

my 2hunny....
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7/25/2018 9:29 PM

ktm200sxbandit wrote:

Lookin' good! Glad to see you bringing another 200sx back to life. They are awesome bikes, especially for woods riding. Stock pipe is fun but thin as paper. FMF fatty is going to have similar characteristics as stock but tougher. I do know of a guy who has a few stock pipes for sale if youre interested. $200 each

my 2hunny....
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Interested in a SX pipe.
Pics to langhammx@sbcglobal.net ?
Thanks, Shaun

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