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Discussion Starter #1
I realize that this has been discussed before but as much as I search and troll on here I can't find the concrete info on it. I'm looking up to pick up my first real supermoto. I purchased a drz400 sometime last year with intent to supermoto it but my budget ended up getting blown on school and such. I rode it a decent amount in the dirt and on the street (close to 5000mi in 3 1/2 months) and loved it but ended up selling it to go back to sportbikes. Well last week I got T-Boned on my zx10 by some guy in a Nissan Titan who decided to not check before crossing the road. Thankfully no broken bones. I decided that with my insurance money I want to buy a supermoto or a dual sport to supermoto. Now this will have to serve as my commuter to and from class as well but I want it to also be able to work on the track (I have the P1 Kart track in Tucson, AZ about 25 min from my house). I also dont want another DRZ....I know I know how much cheaper they are and more reliable but I want something faster and lighter and dont mind the extra maintainence as long as im not rebuilding the engine all the time.

Alright so enough backstory this is my question, I'm thinking about pick up a KTM 450 EXC and sumoing it out. I love that it has the 6 speed tranny and I've always loved the KTM brand. I also like that I will have the dirt setup for when I want to go play in the dirt. My question is what years are best for this and if this is going to fit my needs. From what ive read the EXC is fairly reliable so I just wanted to see if anyone has one of these as a commuter, what kind of service intervals it has, and if im missing any other options that might fit my needs. Sorry for being so long winded....
 

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If you put on 5000 miles in 3.5 months, you should find yourself a true drz 400 SM. The SM is a much nicer bike than the S model, nicer shocks, nicer rear swing-arm, bigger brakes, fat bars, etc.. Throw on an FCR, a nice pipe, a seat-concepts seat and you're off. Realistically, there are a ton more mods to do, tail-light, hand-guards, foot-pegs, grips, .... The side plastics are about the only thing I haven't changed on my SM .. yet

I've heard the newer Huskys are pretty well made, but I wouldn't even dream of putting that sort of regular mileage on a KTM. I've been eyeing up the Husky TE511 for my next bike, but you're putting on some crazy miles for any high-strung thumper.
I'm definitely interested in what others have to say 'tho.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
while I did ride that much then I prob wont be doing that much extreme mileage with the new bike. Even if the suspension and all the goodies are better on the drz400sm I really dont want one. Way too heavy for my liking and I want to try something different. Ive also been looking at 690sm's a bit but the only problem is the track close to me has a 450cc limit for the daily riding. Otherwise id have to wait for the monthly sportbike trackdays down there.
 

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There's some fat to trim on the drz for sure, I've removed more than a few pounds from mine (lithium battery, KTM headlight, vapor, passenger pegs, stock exhaust, etc.). You can get 50hp easily and reliably for under $2k; big bore, cams, fcr carb, and exhaust.
That sucks about the 450cc limit, I wonder if you could get the Husky SMR511 (477cc) and slap on the TE449 plastics.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Haha yeah back when I had my drz I did all the research on all the mods and such. Id just rather pick up a bike that doesn't require engine mods right out of the box to make me happy with it. Im already going to be spending enough on a sumo kit as it is that I dont want to have to tack on another couple grand. Ive looked at the SM pretty well but in my parts I can actually get a really low mile 450 EXC for around $600-$800 cheaper than any of the SM's around here. I appreciate the quick response though! Anyone else want to weigh in on the reliability.
 

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Fast and light? Out of the box, not many bikes comes out like that. A 650 Berg is one fo sure. :D

260lbs, 6spd transmission, 650cc 4valve ohc and approx 60whp. +2006 models are supposed to be a bit more refined. They need maintenance, but nothing too serious unless you race frequently.

511 Husky seems like pretty ok bike for street, 2 year warranty out of the box, pretty nice looks with black plastics and somewhat lightweight with decent power. But don't really know how it works on track. Done only few hours on street with that bike and it felt completely different than my Berg. Maybe because of the stupid front sprocket positioning, that needs swingarm removal to change one. No slack in the drive chain feels weird.

Powerwise that bike sucks in bone stock condinition, BADLY!. Revs like lawn mower and sounds like one. Full ti akra, secondary throttle/idle valve removed, race map plugged in and -1 front sprocket it gets to a decent level. Power output is like turbo car. No instant torque like the Berg, but gets better and better when the revs rise and suddenly, boom!
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
What I guess I meant by fast and light was faster and lighter than the DRZ. Back when I had mine I rode a friends CRF450X and loved it compared to my DRZ. I cant find any Husaburgs nearby and was mostly asking if anyone had experience with the KTM 450EXC as that seems (at least right now) to be my best bet. If I can find a Husky around here I may consider it but only because it would probably be cheaper than buying all the stuff for a sumo conversion but then I would be missing all the dirt accessories to let me go play in the desert. Also I will most likely be buying used so warranty doesn't really matter.
 

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how about a wr450? oil changes and valve checks are more often then a drz but the reality is that the ti valves never go out and the top end will give you some great life. my steel framed one weight 270 just above reserve. i never had it on the dyno but with exhaust, jetting free mods and a 43t in the rear i could lift 4th on the throttle. a 6th gear would be pretty friggin sweet though.
 

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if you dont want another DRZ I would go with the CRF450x. for some reason they are harder to find down here in Tucson but I have rode a few in both dirt & suno setup & gotta say I wouldnt mind upgrading from my DRZ but honestly I can still outride quite a few people on my underpowered bike.
 

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never actually ridden a crfx but ive read there performance is about equal but the crfx has crappy valves out of the box. if but if you do the valves and mabe a trx piston(extra ring) there pretty much identical to a wr
 

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Beat me to it. The crfx has titanium valves, which wear and need adjusting more often, and a 2 ring piston which are known to consume a little oil. There are some reports of these not being issues, but to have the bike on par with a WR . You gave to change those things out. You will NEVER have to adjust WR valves, they simply do not move, and they can last forever without ever having to rebuild or freshen up the motor. Look how many wr400s, 426s, and early 450s are still out there going strong and getting eat on daily without ever going into the motor. There's very little difference in any of the engines. Even the brand new fi WR is the same old motor with a throttle body instead of carb. They are proven performers, even the old ones are cranking out numbers the new 450s of all makes are barely surpassing.

More power than a drz-check
Lighter than a drz-check
Almost, if not, as reliable as a drz-check
 

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seems like a pretty good deal to me bet you could easily throw 2500 at him and have a great bike. the fork seals are nothing and you could live with the kick. if it needs a starter that might be some big dough. but its probibally something dumb. i feel like this is the same conversation as another thread going on but ill say it again anyways. i dont know what phoenix is like (last time i was there i was like 12) but around here (nh) i have 5 yamaha dealers within a 45 minutes from me and one right around the corner. chances are if i need something its in stock somewhere or shows up from another dealer in 2 days. the closest ktm dealers are an hour away(2). and husky .....forget about it
 

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As far as your KTM questions go, I ride a 525 EXC, which is just a bigger version of the RFS motor. They are pretty damn relible motors for a true race style bike. Valve checks, and oil, and I ahev hear d of some guyss with ridiculous amount of miles and hours on them. I love my bike as a street sumo, and can't wait to get it on a track. The 6 speed, and ability to switc out wheels and have a dirt tool are super bonuses too.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Thank you MLMcap for someone finally answering my question haha! Even though that WR seems like a steal I think im going to end up going with the 450exc because I really want the 6 speed and a dirt set up. Plus I really want to take it to the track and I think i'll be better off with it. I really don't mind the extra oil changes and valve checks, just means more bonding time with the bike
 

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just a suggestion

If you don't mind the maintenance why not go with the aprilia sxv....hella fast, light, shit loads of fun even with a sore ass from the hard seat...
 

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Discussion Starter #19
because from what ive read about the sxv's the difference between the maintanence on that versus a RFS motor is either oil changes/valve inspection every couple thousand miles for the RFS or replacing serious parts/possible engine rebuild every couple thousand miles with the SXV motor. When I said I dont mind the extra work I meant extra oil changes and valve stuff....cheap stuff that doesn't take too long. I need a decently reliable bike to commute on and I dont feel I can trust the SXV's to do that
 
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