How are KTMs so light?

drt410
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Boston, MA US
1/17/2018 8:29pm Edited Date/Time 1/20/2018 3:10pm
How are KTMs snd Huskys soooo much lighter than japanese bikes that reeds stock husky was lighter than his factory yzf? They have air forks and a steel frame... where does the rest of it come from? Its a huge difference.
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KennyT
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Vista, CA US
1/17/2018 8:37pm
Not sure where the weight loss comes from. All I know is when I swing by the dealership and check out the bikes I walk right past anything from Japan and go right to the KTM’s. Such a far superior machine than anything else on the market (except for Husky’s) it is no wonder they have the success they do
RPM68
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DFW, TX US
1/17/2018 8:44pm
More expensive metals that are lighter, that break more often. According to my experience
ToolMaker
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Escondido, CA US
1/17/2018 8:56pm
They fill the frame with hydrogen, you know like the Zepplins! Wink
Indymxer
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Carmel, IN US
1/17/2018 9:06pm
I'm starting to think ktm fanboys are kinda like BMW drivers... Too cool for school.

The Shop

mark_swart
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Chapin, SC US
1/17/2018 9:12pm
I have a '17 Husky, and what I notice when comparing to a Japanese bike is that there is no wasted material anywhere. I looks like every thing has been scrutinized and whittled to the bare minimum. Bolts, mounts, frame tube diameter, etc. I'm assuming that also applies to all of the things I can't see, like the design of the engine as well.
Brent
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Party in Temecula, CA US
1/17/2018 9:16pm Edited Date/Time 1/17/2018 9:20pm
It's not that the KTMs are light, it's that the Japanese bikes are so damn heavy.

1/8 of a ton for a RMZ 450? are you kidding me? Are they filling those aluminum frames with lead?

As an old fart, I appreciate being able to easily throw my KTM onto a real bike stand after a moto like I used to with my old 250 two stroke, as opposed to having to use one of those pussy step on jack stands.Tongue
drt410
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1/17/2018 9:17pm Edited Date/Time 1/17/2018 9:18pm
Yea but when you look at these other bikes they dont have a lot of wasted space either. Like look at a kxf and tell me where you chop 10 pounds off that. Must be the frame air fork combo to do the bulk of it then lots of little stuff to wrap it up. Its just crazy when you look at a husky next to another bike to say it weighs soooo much less you just dont see where it comes from.
skypig
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Caloundra AU
1/17/2018 9:18pm
Indymxer wrote:
I'm starting to think ktm fanboys are kinda like BMW drivers... Too cool for school.
Thanks for this great insight.

You can claim “fan boy” or accept that the lightest machine, with the most power (or close to it) and the best brakes has a head start. (Handling and Suspension is harder to quantify, but the consensus is that KTM is near the top in these as well.) KTM’s 450 is often a shoot out winner.

The lighter weight seems to come from continual R&D. Shaving grams from every component.
Everyone knows how much fork springs weigh. KTMs were the lightest bikes when the opposition ran air forks and the KTMs had springs and electric start!

Provided light weight doesn’t come with a reliability penalty there are only upsides. Ti fasteners are standard on pros bikes for eg.

I’m surprised the Japanese can’t close the gap. They seem to shave a kilo off, then add 4 on with electric start and back to spring forks.
chump6784
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AU
1/17/2018 9:21pm
RPM68 wrote:
More expensive metals that are lighter, that break more often. According to my experience
I'd say softer metal that is lighter and breaks more often. God i can't wait to get off ktm 50's
BobPA
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1/17/2018 9:57pm
RPM68 wrote:
More expensive metals that are lighter, that break more often. According to my experience
chump6784 wrote:
I'd say softer metal that is lighter and breaks more often. God i can't wait to get off ktm 50's
You type well for only riding a 50.
hillbilly
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Afton, TN US
1/17/2018 10:08pm
Because KTM cares about dirtbike racing . not quietest generators flashiest PWC biqqest ATV or twenty seven street bike models.
Timo_2824
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Wichita, KS US
1/17/2018 10:19pm
I've seen the frame weights posted on here when the new gen crf was released, that's not were the difference is. I think the majority of it is in the engine. KTM has done a very good job packaging the last 2 generation of big bore engines. It would be nice if one of the mags that does complete bike teardowns after long term tests would weigh each section of the bike: frame, wheels, body, complete engine, engine topend, transmission, low end. This would finally settle this debate, and would also be very interesting info as well.
tek14
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Vantaa FI
1/17/2018 11:37pm
Its every part of bike they have looked closely and cut down extra weight. 10 years ago it was just otherway around with heavy but powerfull KTMs and light Japan bikes. They did see that weight was part they could improve along with suspension and developed every bit of bike better. KTM and Husky bikes are pretty refined products in their price range.
Fearo
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BE
1/18/2018 12:32am
As a KTM owner for 10+ years I say they've gone a little overboard on the weight savings thing. I've seen enough frame snaps and exploded transmissions to conclude they weren't a fluke.

Luckily (or unluckily?) I'm not fast or gnarly enough for these failures to happen to me but I get a little nervous when I see a local pro shredding the balls off a stock looking KTM.
tempura
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JP
1/18/2018 12:32am
Internal engine parts are all plastic bro!!..lol
hyler199
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CA
1/18/2018 1:16am Edited Date/Time 1/18/2018 1:17am
i have a 2013 sx250 2 stroke.
over 200 hours of xc/enduro racing
original piston
no tranny work
never bled the clutch
maintained otherwise
other than the subframe wearing from pastics/being weak from impact i love my bike compared to riding other peoples
Acidreamer
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Mansfield, OH US
1/18/2018 4:17am
They make the motor as thin as possible. If you look at a ktm head vs a kawasaki head, you can see where all of the material is removed. Leads to shit breaking a lot but ktm covers it from what i hear.

Also look at the swingarm vs a jap bike. Its easy to see where they cut corners.
reded
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1/18/2018 4:43am
Acidreamer wrote:
They make the motor as thin as possible. If you look at a ktm head vs a kawasaki head, you can see where all of the...
They make the motor as thin as possible. If you look at a ktm head vs a kawasaki head, you can see where all of the material is removed. Leads to shit breaking a lot but ktm covers it from what i hear.

Also look at the swingarm vs a jap bike. Its easy to see where they cut corners.
I don't see it as cutting corners but pushing the envelope to develop and offer a better product than their competitors.
1/18/2018 4:48am
Front spokes so thin that wheels explode should be an indication of how they save weight. They push the limits of durability.

Pit Row

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1/18/2018 4:49am
Indymxer wrote:
I'm starting to think ktm fanboys are kinda like BMW drivers... Too cool for school.
You're just noticing now?
Donovan759
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Pittsburgh, PA US
1/18/2018 5:02am
Indymxer wrote:
I'm starting to think ktm fanboys are kinda like BMW drivers... Too cool for school.
Most of my experiences with KTM only guys are this way.

Knew a guy who raced C Vet class and was slow as balls, but when you went to a track to practice and he was there, he was changing shocks more often than riding the bike. A day in the life of this guy was more ridiculous than any Ronnie Mac video I've ever watched.
c0ncEpT
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Harrison Twp., MI US
1/18/2018 5:07am
The plastics are held on with legit wood screws with 6mm heads on them.
alexk417
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East Greenville, PA US
1/18/2018 5:16am
It's all in the aluminum axle nuts bros. LaughingTongue

I love my Husky. Smile
dcg141
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MS US
1/18/2018 5:26am Edited Date/Time 1/18/2018 5:27am


KTM 450 cylinder heads from 2008 to the current factory editions. Same basic design but vastly different execution. That's just one component. Multiply every part of the bike getting the same type of rethink and your bike gets progressively lighter.

David934
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CZ
1/18/2018 5:57am
Hmm, no broken frames pictures??
1/18/2018 6:08am
Less material for every piece possible. Hubs, cases, frame...you name it, they've found weight savings. With that said, some compromises in terms of longevity of some of those parts, then again these are supposed to be race bikes so the presumption is many of those parts will be replaced (especially wheels, footpegs, possibly subframe, etc.).
GPrider
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La Mesa, CA US
1/18/2018 6:11am Edited Date/Time 1/18/2018 6:12am
biggest difference is the frame, about 5 pounds lighter than an aluminum frame. Another 3 to 4 with air forks and 4 to 5 in the engine. there is 13 to 15 lbs right there. Now throw in all the little stuff and there is you weight savings between the ktm and standard japanese bike.
MX915
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Central, NJ US
1/18/2018 6:12am
David934 wrote:
Hmm, no broken frames pictures??
Here you go. That should get the troops riled up. Laughing



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