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Old 12-08-2020, 10:56 PM
 
Location: Jewel Lake (Sagle) Idaho
34,678 posts, read 20,874,738 times
Reputation: 21020

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It just came out this year, adventure version of the 390 Duke. Lots of bike for not a lot of money. 44hp, WP suspension, lean angle ABS/Traction control, TFT display, LED lighting, all for $6200. I've read about quite a few people going to them from the big ADV bikes, GSs, Super Adventures, Teneres, Stroms, and they say it's a lot of fun and surprisingly capable. There are some negatives, limited suspension travel (roughly 7 inches), not that light for a 390 at about 375 wet, and cast wheels. But in spite of that it seems to do well within its limits-it's a light adventure bike for exploring-not a dirt bike or even "dual sport" for bashing fast, hard single track or big jumps. Just curious if anyone here has ridden one-or a 390 Duke for that matter? I have a 1290 and it's a big, heavy, expensive beast for the backcountry. Very fun and capable, but it can be a handful in really rough stuff.

The price is less than that of a DR650, WR250R, XR650L, I believe less than a KLX or CRF250L, with more power, technology and on-road capability.
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Old 12-29-2020, 03:06 PM
 
Location: Munich, Bavaria, Germany
48 posts, read 21,504 times
Reputation: 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toyman at Jewel Lake View Post
It just came out this year, adventure version of the 390 Duke. Lots of bike for not a lot of money. 44hp, WP suspension, lean angle ABS/Traction control, TFT display, LED lighting, all for $6200. I've read about quite a few people going to them from the big ADV bikes, GSs, Super Adventures, Teneres, Stroms, and they say it's a lot of fun and surprisingly capable. There are some negatives, limited suspension travel (roughly 7 inches), not that light for a 390 at about 375 wet, and cast wheels. But in spite of that it seems to do well within its limits-it's a light adventure bike for exploring-not a dirt bike or even "dual sport" for bashing fast, hard single track or big jumps. Just curious if anyone here has ridden one-or a 390 Duke for that matter? I have a 1290 and it's a big, heavy, expensive beast for the backcountry. Very fun and capable, but it can be a handful in really rough stuff.

The price is less than that of a DR650, WR250R, XR650L, I believe less than a KLX or CRF250L, with more power, technology and on-road capability.
I love this bike. KTM (Austria) produces excellent quality, and I prefer smaller motos.
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Old 01-01-2021, 11:01 AM
 
Location: Sandy Eggo's North County
2,540 posts, read 836,890 times
Reputation: 3483
I'm going to be servicing an RC 390 in a week (track prep) for Cat. The 390 seems to be a well built lump.

Toyman...I see you're looking to "lose some bulk" from the GS/Ten/Tiger class. I can't say I blame you. Those bikes are wonderful on groomed DG/gravel roads, as well as asphalt streets. They become "no fun" in soft sugar sand or mud.

If I didn't have a 701, I'd take a serious look at the 390, myself. (Who knows, I might still graduate to a 300cc bike as I get older...)

Most important, what is your goal for the 390? Single/dual track? Mud? Loam? (I see you're in Idaho.) Do you have a KTM dealer near you? Having convenient dealership support is a nice thing to have.
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Old 01-02-2021, 02:00 AM
 
Location: Jewel Lake (Sagle) Idaho
34,678 posts, read 20,874,738 times
Reputation: 21020
Quote:
Originally Posted by NORTY FLATZ View Post
I'm going to be servicing an RC 390 in a week (track prep) for Cat. The 390 seems to be a well built lump.

Toyman...I see you're looking to "lose some bulk" from the GS/Ten/Tiger class. I can't say I blame you. Those bikes are wonderful on groomed DG/gravel roads, as well as asphalt streets. They become "no fun" in soft sugar sand or mud.

If I didn't have a 701, I'd take a serious look at the 390, myself. (Who knows, I might still graduate to a 300cc bike as I get older...)

Most important, what is your goal for the 390? Single/dual track? Mud? Loam? (I see you're in Idaho.) Do you have a KTM dealer near you? Having convenient dealership support is a nice thing to have.
I'm really not getting the use out of the 1290 Super Adventure R that I thought I would. Performance is outstanding-the engine is pretty amazing. And the suspension will soak up rough terrain amazingly well at high speeds. I have found myself running 100+ on dirt roads without really realizing it. But as you say-it's best on fast roads. We have a lot of forest service roads that are narrow, overgrown with brush, lots of loose rocks and washouts. And even the good roads are in the mountains and twisty. There is no need for a 160hp dirt bike. And I hesitate to hit the rough, slow roads/trails due to the weight and height of the bike-and when I hit the bad stuff I'm always thinking about this being an $18k bike. To say nothing of picking up a bike that weighs 550lbs or so with skid and panniers alone. Flip side-it has great power for the street, but handling with the 21" front is a little loose at high speeds, wind protection is limited and the seat isn't that comfortable. It's not my choice for a long road trip (I picked up a K1600GTL for that).

I have been toying with a 690/701. But at my age (will be 59 in a month) I really don't need the suspension capability of those bikes. I am more into modest speed exploring on forest service roads/atv trails rather than doing big jumps or blasting across the desert. Slapping on a set of soft panniers and camping off the bike is more my style. I've been on a number of week-long backcountry moto-camping trips. And they are still expensive bikes-the 690 lists for $12K-for a thumper! IIRC the 701 is a bit more.

The 390 ADV doesn't have nearly the capability of the 690/701. 44hp vs 70. More weight-378 wet vs 340. And a lot less suspension travel-about 7 vs what, 10 or so? But it's focused as a light adventure bike-not a dual sport. Lower seat height. Some wind protection on the road. LED headlight/taillight. And it still keeps a suspension with adjustable compression/rebound damping front/rear. Traction control/ABS. TFT display. And the key point-$6200! I would like a 790/890-but they are twice the price, and 100 lbs heavier! From what I've read, it's surprisingly capable on the street, able to cruise at highway speeds, and good, within its limitations, off pavement. Not a hard-core single track or desert bike, but a light ADV. I see it as kind of a Weestrom (I had one) alternative with 100 lbs less weight, a much better quality suspension and 1/3 lower cost.

I still haven't made my decision. I was looking at 690 Enduros-but even used they are a lot of money, at least in my area (dirt toys hold value well). And they are a little range limited for my area (we have lots of forest service roads/trails, but gas stops are few and far between) and bigger tanks are expensive! KTM is supposed to come out with a 490 twin in 2022-but I expect it will be 1-2 more years before an ADV version makes it to the states. The 390 was first released in the naked (Duke) and sport bike (RC) and the new bikes came out in India for a year before coming to the states. So if they bring out a 490 Duke in India in '22, and ADV in '23, it would likely be here in '24. And there is no word of weight or price.

I'd be happier if it had another inch of suspension travel, and wire wheels instead of cast. KTM just started selling spoked wheels as power-parts. I would be surprised if they didn't sell a version with them on from the factory pretty soon.
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Old 01-03-2021, 03:59 AM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
27,097 posts, read 45,179,135 times
Reputation: 31297
Several riders in our TX group have consolidated from larger and smaller bikes to 690/701s. They claim they do all they want to do road or trail (age ~60+).

In general, TX riding is very simple compared to Mtn States where I usually ride. But... sand, (6" thick dust), rock rubble (3-5" marbles) and greased algae water crossings, and slick MUD are challenges for the heavy bikes.
https://www.twtex.com/forums/categor...ort-riding.26/

I am fine on my 325# XT500,($900 brand new in 1976) tho I have a spare DR650 ($3k used) (75 mph sustained) for friends who come down for 'winter vacation'.

My XT500 is nominally OK for road riding (Geared as tall as possible)~65mph sustained.. They just have too close ratio for 5th, but excellent for my flat-track days of the 1970's.

A friend in WA has ridden to AK 2x on his XT500.

I plan to do BDR from TEX / NM / AZ/ CA / UT / ID / OR / WA to Canada on my XT.
Will head southbound MT / WY / CO / NM during fall colors + do Arkansas / MO Ozarks during late fall.

Someday I will be too old to kick over the XT, then I will be stuck with DR or a 690.

Last edited by StealthRabbit; 01-03-2021 at 04:08 AM..
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Old 01-03-2021, 06:43 PM
 
Location: Fountain Valley Ca.
473 posts, read 246,136 times
Reputation: 861
Quote:
Originally Posted by StealthRabbit View Post
Several riders in our TX group have consolidated from larger and smaller bikes to 690/701s. They claim they do all they want to do road or trail (age ~60+).

In general, TX riding is very simple compared to Mtn States where I usually ride. But... sand, (6" thick dust), rock rubble (3-5" marbles) and greased algae water crossings, and slick MUD are challenges for the heavy bikes.
https://www.twtex.com/forums/categor...ort-riding.26/

I am fine on my 325# XT500,($900 brand new in 1976) tho I have a spare DR650 ($3k used) (75 mph sustained) for friends who come down for 'winter vacation'.

My XT500 is nominally OK for road riding (Geared as tall as possible)~65mph sustained.. They just have too close ratio for 5th, but excellent for my flat-track days of the 1970's.

A friend in WA has ridden to AK 2x on his XT500.

I plan to do BDR from TEX / NM / AZ/ CA / UT / ID / OR / WA to Canada on my XT.
Will head southbound MT / WY / CO / NM during fall colors + do Arkansas / MO Ozarks during late fall.

Someday I will be too old to kick over the XT, then I will be stuck with DR or a 690.
I had a 1981 TT 500. That was one fun dirt bike. It was a blast on fire roads, hill climbing, or screaming across the desert. I decided that I wanted to turn it into an XT so I changed out everything that I needed like a stator, wiring harness, and everything else I could find at salvage yards. It was a fun little project, but I had some issues with DMV and after getting it all done I rode on the street for maybe a week and then switched it back to a TT like it was designed. Wasn't much fun on the street, at all.
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Old 01-04-2021, 12:10 PM
 
Location: Sandy Eggo's North County
2,540 posts, read 836,890 times
Reputation: 3483
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toyman at Jewel Lake View Post
I'm really not getting the use out of the 1290 Super Adventure R that I thought I would. Performance is outstanding-the engine is pretty amazing. And the suspension will soak up rough terrain amazingly well at high speeds. I have found myself running 100+ on dirt roads without really realizing it. But as you say-it's best on fast roads. We have a lot of forest service roads that are narrow, overgrown with brush, lots of loose rocks and washouts. And even the good roads are in the mountains and twisty. There is no need for a 160hp dirt bike. And I hesitate to hit the rough, slow roads/trails due to the weight and height of the bike-and when I hit the bad stuff I'm always thinking about this being an $18k bike. To say nothing of picking up a bike that weighs 550lbs or so with skid and panniers alone. Flip side-it has great power for the street, but handling with the 21" front is a little loose at high speeds, wind protection is limited and the seat isn't that comfortable. It's not my choice for a long road trip (I picked up a K1600GTL for that).

I have been toying with a 690/701. But at my age (will be 59 in a month) I really don't need the suspension capability of those bikes. I am more into modest speed exploring on forest service roads/atv trails rather than doing big jumps or blasting across the desert. Slapping on a set of soft panniers and camping off the bike is more my style. I've been on a number of week-long backcountry moto-camping trips. And they are still expensive bikes-the 690 lists for $12K-for a thumper! IIRC the 701 is a bit more.

The 390 ADV doesn't have nearly the capability of the 690/701. 44hp vs 70. More weight-378 wet vs 340. And a lot less suspension travel-about 7 vs what, 10 or so? But it's focused as a light adventure bike-not a dual sport. Lower seat height. Some wind protection on the road. LED headlight/taillight. And it still keeps a suspension with adjustable compression/rebound damping front/rear. Traction control/ABS. TFT display. And the key point-$6200! I would like a 790/890-but they are twice the price, and 100 lbs heavier! From what I've read, it's surprisingly capable on the street, able to cruise at highway speeds, and good, within its limitations, off pavement. Not a hard-core single track or desert bike, but a light ADV. I see it as kind of a Weestrom (I had one) alternative with 100 lbs less weight, a much better quality suspension and 1/3 lower cost.

I still haven't made my decision. I was looking at 690 Enduros-but even used they are a lot of money, at least in my area (dirt toys hold value well). And they are a little range limited for my area (we have lots of forest service roads/trails, but gas stops are few and far between) and bigger tanks are expensive! KTM is supposed to come out with a 490 twin in 2022-but I expect it will be 1-2 more years before an ADV version makes it to the states. The 390 was first released in the naked (Duke) and sport bike (RC) and the new bikes came out in India for a year before coming to the states. So if they bring out a 490 Duke in India in '22, and ADV in '23, it would likely be here in '24. And there is no word of weight or price.

I'd be happier if it had another inch of suspension travel, and wire wheels instead of cast. KTM just started selling spoked wheels as power-parts. I would be surprised if they didn't sell a version with them on from the factory pretty soon.
WOW! This a helluva post! You nailed a bunch of points.
I certainly understand not risking your 1290, for the exact reasons you stated.
I know all about the weight issue when riding off-road. It's enemy #1!
This is the reason I went with the 701. I have a Triumph 800XC that I've taken off-road. In sugar sand, it's not fun at all. On the road, the bike is wonderful. I considered the KTM EXC 500, but after riding one, decided it's not very good for on-road duty. (Where I live, the nearest dirt is 50 miles away.)

So, let me fill you in, on the 690/701~

The KTM gets a 1 year, 12,000 mile warranty.

The Husky gets a 2-year, 24,000 mile warranty.

That may matter to some, but not others. It's just nice to know.

BOTH bikes STILL have the lousy Magura clutch slave. (This is a known point of failure.) $140 fix.

Over the years, both bikes have gone through numerous changes/improvements. I could write a book on these, but let's just go with 2020-2021 YM's.

The Husky 701 has numerous "nannies" now. Many riders desire having a more simplistic electronics package. (Husky added these in 2020 MY.)

The KTM nannies were added 2019MY. The only difference between the 2020 and 2021 MY's for the 690, is "BNG."

The rear suspension linkage is different on both bikes, regardless of vintage.

The WP "4CS" forks are horrible. They were on 2017-2019MY's.

They both have similar engines (finally.) 74hp rated now. An interesting note, regarding powerbands. The 701 is very soft at the bottom, and fairly soft in the midrange, but SCREAMS on the top~end. The 701 is almost like a YZ 250 2-stroke, with double the power. Totally backwards compared to a stock XL, DR, XR, KLR, KLX, XT et al. This takes some getting used to.
Now, there are things that can be done to "fatten up" the fueling, and the 701/690 responds very well to these changes.
Both the KTM/Husky are also available in "SUMO" attire. Yes, all 4 bikes wheelie in the first 3 gears without clutching. With tuning, the front can come up in the first 5 gears! The bikes weigh 340#. Drop the stock end-can, replace the lead battery with an Anti-gravity, and you're now in the 320's...

Having a lighter bike is helpful when your bike is napping.

The catalytic convertor is crazy hot, and located in a place where they may be touched. For this reason, many riders replace with a much lighter (and cooler) end can.

Hope this helps. (There's a ton of aftermarket support.) WR gears, Big Bore kits (to 90HP.) and tons of others.

Last edited by NORTY FLATZ; 01-04-2021 at 12:14 PM.. Reason: added stuff, ya know?
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Old 01-27-2021, 11:02 PM
 
Location: Jewel Lake (Sagle) Idaho
34,678 posts, read 20,874,738 times
Reputation: 21020
Details on the "new" KLR came out recently. Still a 5 speed thumper. Sounds like basically the same engine and budget suspension. Even heavier than the last one-which was already overweight for what it was. 460 lbs-its as heavy as 700-900cc twins/triples, but without the engine.

There was speculation of this being a slightly smaller twin, with an upgraded suspension and lighter weight. For a backcountry bike, it's a step backward-and leaves the 390 Adventure as perhaps the best "adventure" type bike in this price range. Same power as a DR650, more street oriented creature comforts, with an engine that will actually rev and a quality suspension.
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Old 01-31-2021, 09:39 PM
 
Location: Sandy Eggo's North County
2,540 posts, read 836,890 times
Reputation: 3483
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toyman at Jewel Lake View Post
For a backcountry bike, it's a step backward-and leaves the 390 Adventure as perhaps the best "adventure" type bike in this price range. Same power as a DR650, more street oriented creature comforts, with an engine that will actually rev and a quality suspension.
Have you tried the 390, yet?
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