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There is a KTM dongle that you can buy that plugs into the bike that saves your TC settings when you switch off/restart the bike, so your ideal ride mode settings stay the same every time you start it up. I haven't bought that dongle, but I might. Traction control is on from when you first turn on the bike if you don't have the dongle, -TC prevents the front coming up, so you have to turn it off to wheelie, although you can hit a speed bump and hit the gas and have the front float up in a wheelie with TC on, although generally TC will kill the wheelie.

To be honest, I turn mine on and off. I use my bike for both commuting and some aggressive evening or weekend rides (been riding supermotos on one wheel since 2005), but in the wet TC is unbelievable, its like you're riding on a dry road, especially when you factor in the new gen 2 ABS, so there is a time and place in my mind for TC. For highway riding I like TC as you get some incredible drive out of turns, where in the past I was getting a healthy amount of wheel spin out of turns- its like maybe 20% more drive at full throttle as it just hooks up, computer does the work, you just focus on the ideal line. For city riding you definitely want it off. I don't do a lot of highway wheelies, most of mine are in the city, hence turning TC off for slower speed and back alley whoops. The 2019 makes a lot of power and just comes up on its own with TC off in every gear, and if you go +2 on the rear it comes up even easier, lol, like on my 2010. On gravel roads TC is crazy with slicks, the tires really really hooks up in loose dirt, super weird.


I don't have the dongle, but I found a quick workaround last week. If you start your bike in neutral with the side stand up, standing next to it, and give it a quick hard shove forwards and tap the front brake at the end of the hard shove, (so that you maybe push the bike like 12-18" forward at most) the ABS warning light turns off (which always lights up at startup), signifying that you can now switch off ABS or TC. So you can now climb on your bike from rest and adjust your gear and then wheelie away, without having to ride, stop, switch off, ride...
The TC must be what keeps my front wheel planted. It has only wheelied ones in first gear when I popped the clutch.
I'm no wheelie person anyway. But I just wondered if it's something wrong since I can just go full throttle and no wheelie.
I have tried going at 40 km/h in second and open fully, wheel stays down.

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Discussion Starter #22 (Edited)
The TC must be what keeps my front wheel planted. It has only wheelied ones in first gear when I popped the clutch.
I'm no wheelie person anyway. But I just wondered if it's something wrong since I can just go full throttle and no wheelie.
I have tried going at 40 km/h in second and open fully, wheel stays down.

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Yes, you're absolutely correct; TC is cutting power to keep your front wheel down. Clutch pops off a speed bump is the only time that I've ever been able to wheelie the bike with TC on.

Try turning it off sometime when you're full of caffeine and warmed up with some riding gear on. Give it a really hard throttle roll on from zero off the line, it will come up in first, it will accelerate hard first and then just start lifting on its own at higher rpm (around middle of the rev range). It comes up smoothly and consistently, no surprises at all, and the bike really just floats in the wind because its so light, especially in the higher gears, its very stable on the rear wheel. The throttle is so precise and crisp and the whole handling and package is so incredibly refined and improved over my 2010 that its just effortless wheelies really, as minute throttle inputs are well received.

I have wheelied in both ride modes too, and I suggest using street mode/1, rather than track mode/2. They both make the same power but the throttle response is far more direct in track/2, and I've actually found that I can hold my front wheel up maybe 25% longer in the street mode/1 probably because I'm no superstar and the electronics are helping me wheelie further by taking the "edge" off of my bad throttle inputs, to smooth things out.

If you really want to turn your 690 into a wheelie machine, I would suggest going +2 on your rear sprocket. Thats all you will need - you lose maybe 12 km/h top speed but it will lift the front at perhaps 1500-2000 rpm lower so city riding becomes pretty fun. (As an aside, don't ever change your front sprocket to anything but official stock KTM, or you will get a seal leak due to the thinner aftermarket front sprockets not putting enough pressure on the 2 seals).

I should mention something that's F'd me up a few times too: Make sure that you keep your left foot away from the quick shifter unless you're trying to shift. Attempting wheelies, I have tagged the lever with my foot when the front first comes up, from having my left foot a little too far forward on the peg, and it will pop the bike out of gear for a moment (it might not change gears though), causing a sudden front drop as your drive cuts to zero, and then it hits hard when it kicks back into gear and you get a good Ronnie Mac head snap. When thinking about bringing up the front just shift the ball of your left foot back an inch on the foot peg and you'll have no issue with popping out of gear from tapping the QS accidentally when it comes up. In higher gears for wheelies, I generally bounce it up more like a stand up wheelie where I'm timing that bounce and tug on the bars with that slightly delayed leg thrust, but without too much bounce or thrust, as the bike wants to do the work for you; I put in a Li-ion battery, so mines at 320 lbs. With 74 hp and 55 ft pounds at that weight, you don't have to use a lot of body English to wrangle the bike into a wheelie, it wants to go on its own, you just have to contain it.

Have fun ;)
 

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Yes, you're absolutely correct; TC is cutting power to keep your front wheel down. Clutch pops off a speed bump is the only time that I've ever been able to wheelie the bike with TC on.

Try turning it off sometime when you're full of caffeine and warmed up with some riding gear on. Give it a really hard throttle roll on from zero off the line, it will come up in first, it will accelerate hard first and then just start lifting on its own at higher rpm (around middle of the rev range). It comes up smoothly and consistently, no surprises at all, and the bike really just floats in the wind because its so light, especially in the higher gears, its very stable on the rear wheel. The throttle is so precise and crisp and the whole handling and package is so incredibly refined and improved over my 2010 that its just effortless wheelies really, as minute throttle inputs are well received.

I have wheelied in both ride modes too, and I suggest using street mode/1, rather than track mode/2. They both make the same power but the throttle response is far more direct in track/2, and I've actually found that I can hold my front wheel up maybe 25% longer in the street mode/1 probably because I'm no superstar and the electronics are helping me wheelie further by taking the "edge" off of my bad throttle inputs, to smooth things out.

I should mention something that's F'd me up a few times too: Make sure that you keep your left foot away from the quick shifter unless you're trying to shift, attempting wheelies, I have tagged the lever with my foot when the front first comes up, from having my left foot a little too far forward on the peg, and it will pop the bike out of gear for a moment (it might not change gears though), causing a sudden front drop as your drive cuts to zero, and then it hits hard when it kicks back into gear and you get a good Ronnie Mac head snap. When thinking about bringing up the front just shift the ball of your left foot back an inch on the foot peg and you'll have no issue with popping out of gear from tapping the QS accidentally when it comes up. In higher gears for wheelies, I generally bounce it up more like a stand up wheelie where I'm timing that bounce and tug on the bars with that slightly delayed leg thrust, but without too much bounce or thrust, as the bike wants to do the work for you; I put in a Li-ion battery, so mines at 320 lbs. With 74 hp and 55 ft pounds at that weight, you don't have to use a lot of body English to wrangle the bike into a wheelie, it wants to go on its own, you just have to contain it.

Have fun ;)
New battery and levers are next in my to do list.
But right now no money after my first fork rebuild on my bike :(


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Discussion Starter #24
Well, if you feel like adding some free pizzazz, there's basically a free tail tidy mod that you can fab that gets rid of the lower. There's a factory blank'd LED plate light hidden in the LED module that you can activate. I modified mine recently, attached is a pic. There's a strong chance that my workplace is getting either a CNC plasma or waterjet machine in the next little while, so there could be some future 690 options on the menu too...
 

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Well, if you feel like adding some free pizzazz, there's basically a free tail tidy mod that you can fab that gets rid of the lower. There's a factory blank'd LED plate light hidden in the LED module that you can activate. I modified mine recently, attached is a pic. There's a strong chance that my workplace is getting either a CNC plasma or waterjet machine in the next little while, so there could be some future 690 options on the menu too...
I have a tail tidy bracket on mine.

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Discussion Starter #27
How did you activate the led?

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Its super easy. The hardest part is trying to work out which bolts take off the new tail plastic, as its not in the manual. (Big bolt middle on u/s, then the tail cowl slides backwards)


Look at the tail light connection: There are 3 wires coming from the bike side of the connector. There are four wires from the connector leading to the tail light.

You need to take the power from the remote license plate light and connect it to that 4th wire in the tail light loom. No need to use the connector, you can just splice into the existing 4th wire on the tail light side. That's it. The ground for the hidden plate light is already connected internally in the tail light via one of the other 3 wires.
 

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Discussion Starter #28
I've been commuting on the 690 a bit recently and although I try to ride on the nice days, the weather often changes here and we can get some cold winter weather and hard rain. I've been caught out a few times in hard rain just a few degrees above freezing and I'm incredibly impressed by the traction control on the 690. The highway exit has a nice leaning right hander that on a dry summer day you can carve a nice line through, but when its cold and wet that can be a different story. With the traction control, as long as you have good front grip feel you can feel free to just carve through the corners on the wet and get on the gas hard on the exit as in the Road mode with the TC on, it prevents rear wheel spin and so you just can basically roll it to the stop and let the electronics sort it all out. This is also true off the line, if you have to do an upcoming lane change, for example, from a red light. You just give it lots of throttle and let the electronics sort out the wheel spin and you just get a hard drive off the line in heavy rain, its unbelievable.
 

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The TC sounds impressive and well calibrated. A trickle down product of moto gp. Where the best riders in the world rely on TC.

I would assume it could help accelerate (no pun) learning where the limit of traction is. (Usually far beyond where I’m operating, unfortunately.
 

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Thanks for starting the thread I just picked up my new 690 and have been wondering about the tc/abs and this helps
 

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Well, mine has been pretty much a city bike; Have owned a Husky 450 SM and 2017 701SM, and various adventure and sport bikes. By far, the 2019 SMC has the most amazing suspension I've experienced in terms of dealing with rough conditions. I hit everything from random steel construction plates, wavy cobblestone, huge rim busting pot holes, and massive speed bumps here in Manhattan; The SMC just flys over everything without issue.

When my GF is on the back, i typically warn her when something rough is coming up. Last few times she laughed saying 'I didnt feel a thing". Its now to the point where i look for rough conditions so i can fly over it.

Just need my damn heated grips to come it!
 

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Discussion Starter #32 (Edited)
I have been exploring the nuances of the two ride modes as I've found very little online about exactly how they differ.

Traction control has an anti-wheelie aspect baked into it- turn it off and the bike wheelies. I've learned that one of the differences in ride modes is how much electronic influence exists between them. Obviously by turning off TC the bike behaves normally, but there are some nuances in the riding modes and levels of TC in each.

Originally I found that with TC off in mode 1, the bike was easier to wheelie as there is more of an electronic intervention between my hand and the bike, taking the edge off my incorrect or incorrectly timed throttle inputs while up on one wheel and that allowed me to keep it up quite a bit longer than normal, but this requires a lot of button pushing to get all setup. I found that I was using mode 1 for the high speed part of my commute, but when I got downtown I would turn off TC to allow the front end to come up as ride mode 1 with TC on appears to have much more anti-wheelie intervention, only allowing the front up a few inches for a powerful drive, (but you can still bump the front end up off say a speed bump and get past the intervention) but the bike is smooth to wheelie with TC off in mode 1.

I'm closing in on 10,000km on my 2019, so I think that I finally have a good feel for the bike in ride mode 1, so I've been playing around with mode 2. This is the supermoto mode and has a more direct throttle response. Originally I couldn't handle the precision of the throttle inputs in this mode while up on one wheel, but now I've got a good feel for it and I've noticed that the electronic anti-wheelie intervention is far reduced in this mode. so actually in ride mode 2 with TC on, you can just roll on the throttle off the line, and have the front float right up into a wheelie with stock gearing without TC retarding the spark and power to reduce the front wheel height. So I've changed my tune and love mode 2 now.

Incidentally traction control in the hard rain on a very very cold day makes you look like an absolute lunatic of a savage. In near freezing temps and pounding rain, if you get on it hard off the line in ride mode 2, the bike will launch off the line with zero wheelspin and ferocious drive and then the front just starts floating up into a wheelie like its a summer day, like you just get on it hard and give it way too much gas and the bike's electronics just sort out the wheel spin in all the freezing rain; its impressive.
 
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