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KTM Freeride 250r, my thoughts

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I was looking for a particular bike, one that suited my riding style. I ride tight single track, virgin woods, firelanes and love to play like a trials rider. And attempt every hill I can find. But I climb with traction, not like a rocket ship. The Freeride in it's stock form did not exactly fit my needs. It was tame power really low but had an explosive hit at 1/4 throttle. The throttle was way to quick resulting in every bump or drop of the elbow when landing slow jumps being transferred into a whisky throttle. First order of business was to change to a throttle tamer. The 2nd cam I tried was perfect for me. I installed a 5 oz flywheel weight. This made it almost stall proof, helped smooth out the power. Then the  next thing was to fix the carb issues. the bike is known to have many issues with the carb. I changed out the weak throttle spring to keep it from sticking at WOT due to the high vacuum lifting the wedge shaped slide. It was also known to have a hanging rpm on decel. I fixed this by tuning the carb with the jets to have a closer combustion temp. A consistent "piston wash" throughout the throttle range. I have it tuned as of now with an intentional rich detune that restrains the explosive hit. as I get more time on the bike and learn to control the power better, better at clutch slipping, I will lean up the jetting for more power. My first move will be a hotter spark plug, a 6 rather than the 7. Next move would be back to the 7 with a leaner pilot and main. The suspension... a little soft. I bottom often when landing slow jumps. But this should be addressed real soon. The footpegs... way to high. I lowered mine 1 7/16, about as far as I can go do to the brake having a max lowering point, shifter the same. The bike now handles great. Super light at 202 lbs. I can power up the front in almost any gear, LOL, I can just pull up the front without throttle help. The motor is almost strange in that it has a low end power that is steady and does not fade. What I mean is that I can climb a steep hill without run up and the bike does not lose power as it climbs. It's like a tractor. The straight line traction is amazing. Likely in excess of what's needed at the expense of leaning the bike. Many are changing out the brakes, as of now, I have mine figured out. The adjust range is very short. It has to be almost perfect, which is super easy to tell if it is or not. I think they will be fine, no need of changing. we will see. The tires.... sidewalls are exxxxxxtremely thin on the rear. I installed tubliss, for the 360 degree rim lock but also to keep from banging my rims. As far as running hardly any pressure, not with this thin walled tire. It takes 5 lbs to keep it off the rim. But straight line traction is second to none. I will ride it until it rips a sidewall, then I have a Shinco 505 in the wait. The bike is a cross between a trials bike and a dirt bike. But it gives up very little anywhere. It's designed to be a gripper not a ripper but it can rip. I tamed my up. My fan hardly ever comes on, the highest temps about 150, the average about 125. Slow technical, the coolest running. Of course if I ever tune for power, temps would rise. But for now, I ride it just like you would a 4t. The bike has quickly become my favorite bike. I have installed Twisted engineering bars and hand guards, radiator guard, knight footpegs, knurled idle screw and air screw. Wating on skidplate and Clake 2 LHRB. The bike is gr. eat. Runs like a dream. Predictable throttle, Roll on power, no fade, no hanging rpm, easy starter. You don't see much on here about the Freeride. So I thought I would bring it up. If anyone needs further info on anything mentioned, I will be glad to help and to explain the details. 

Edited by 1gr8bldr
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I wrote this about the hanging rpm's , this is pasted from another forum; 

When we jet anything, combustion temps play a big part. If we jet something perfectly as we want it we assume a constant combustion temp. Our Freeride has been sent to use with an intentional detune. This is why the JD kit can wake it up. KTM could have done the same but was building a bike after a certain target. Trying to convert the bike from a gripper to a ripper would have me ask, did you buy the right bike. But we all like to get more. I understand. Back to the point. The bike down low is melow and then has an explosive hit. A clear sign of rich to leaner. Note that the hanging rpms come only after having come back off the main/2nd half of the throttle. The early stages of the throttle, rich, having a constant combustion temp, it being cool because of the fuels ability to cool it. Then once the main kicks in, it is a leaner burn relative to the 1st portion of the throttle. So combustion temps rise, thus the bike heats more. So, once the combustion chamber is hot from a near wot run, when you slow back down to near idle , you will get that hanging rpms until the fuel cools the combustion chamber back down. Even though jets may be a constant, fuel will combust differently. Interesting study is "piston wash". If you view your piston through the spark plug hole you can see your "wash". A rich cool running piston will show a lot of shinny piston top. A hotter running, lean, will show almost no shine, the fuel having burnt onto the top. Piston wash is interesting but does not tell you everything because you are looking at an average and just like the Freeride, it could be rich early and hot at WOT. If you want to eliminate the hanging rpms you fix it with jetting. But you are not looking for more or less fuel. You want the full throttle range to have similar combustion temp. So if the idle is rich with a lean main, you can go 1 of 2 ways. you can richen the main to match the pilot or lean the pilot to match the main. In doing so you will create a more constant combustion due to a more constant combustion chamber temp. Our freerides are rich as a detune so much power is left on the table. Leaning it out will produce much more power but will cause your fan to run much more and you will lose some of it's traction quality's. But lean is a ***** to crank. A lean bike will always be a hard starter. Bear in mind that bigger jets, more fuel, does not build more power. Dialing in the perfect proportion of fuel to air ratio builds power. This is why leaner is often more power. The JD kit is likely opposite of what people assume. I expect it will be leaner than stock???? Of course the needle taper would govern the transition from pilot to main as well. But discussing needle taper is goes past the point of explanation of the basics of the Freeride hanging rpms.
I realize that some may question this, so I ask, why is it that your hanging rpms are only after a you come back from the main jet circuit to the pilot jet circut. You don't have the hanging rpms any other time

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It sounds like you've tuned it to exactly where I want mine to be. I just bought a 2017 this week so have only gotten one good ride in so far. I've definitely noticed the hit at 1/4 throttle but didn't really know how to describe it until now (first 2 stroke). What jets did you end up with? What's your elevation, and finally are you sticking to the recommended 80:1?

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1 hour ago, J5k said:

It sounds like you've tuned it to exactly where I want mine to be. I just bought a 2017 this week so have only gotten one good ride in so far. I've definitely noticed the hit at 1/4 throttle but didn't really know how to describe it until now (first 2 stroke). What jets did you end up with? What's your elevation, and finally are you sticking to the recommended 80:1?

As of now, I have mine tuned at 55 pilot and 128 main. The freeride is known to have many carb issues. They all come from the main jet contributing to the pilot circuit where it don't belong. This can almost be eliminated if you keep your idle low as possible. If you raise your slide then several things happen. The den, den, den gets worse, rpm's fall slowly at the release of the throttle and sometimes hold the same rpms even though you released the throttle. Sometimes it can stick at WOT. If this happens to you, don't panic. Gear up, lock the brake and drop the clutch to stall it. The kill switch will not kill it when this happens.I love the bike, it is great, but idle to 1/8 throttle is not perfect, but it's a 2t. I figured out how to make it just like a crf250x in every way, yet it caused another issue I could not fix. I  am staying with the 80:1. For what I do, trials like play and enduro type riding, the 80 is fine. If I were running it harder, 80:1 is not enough, yet then I would have bought a different bike. Be advised if you were to go with say... 50:1 , then my jetting would be lean. Adding oil reduces fuel to air ratio which burns hotter/leaner and would need be jetted accordingly. Glad to answer any questions you may have. Several things, you will benefit from lowering the footpegs. Standing and balance will be much better. As of now the suspension is adequate but designed to be a trials crossover. If you never do slow technical then you might like it a little stiffer. The rear tire has great forward traction, but extremely thin sidewalls. Low pressure will have you banging the rims on sharp corners. Tubliss will fix this. The rear brake adjustment is critical. It works fine but does not have much range for incorrect adjustment.  Front tire does not do well in leaning turns. Mine is almost stall proof. Never had anything that pulled like this bike down low. I did install the flywheel weight and throttle tamer. The stock throttle was way to critical for me

Edited by 1gr8bldr

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Sounds like we would have a lot of fun riding together. I try to stay at a smooth pace and when it gets rough, stay on the pegs and tractor through or up.

as far as lowering the pegs, I'm feeling comfortable so far. I'm about 5'6", I can just get toes on each side, and have to slide off to either side to get a flat foot when needed. 

What im finding is that the engine just doesn't sound happy in my rpm range, which is basically 1/8-1/4 in second gear. A little more and it's singing but then I'm going faster than I want to be and let off.

 

right now I'm in the break in stage recommended by the dealer. Running 40 or 50:1 and "ride it like you normally would" with some basics like let it warm up, don't hold wot, etc. the low oil:fuel ratio makes me think I'm running a bit lean in spots as I've gotten the hanging a time or two already. He said to run a full tank or about 2 hours and then change oil and fill with the factory recommended ratio. I've hit 45 minutes with only 7 miles and a small portion or a tank so far. 

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Anytime a 36 inch seat height has 15 inches of clearance means your knees are bent more than they should. Makes the transition from sitting to standing hard. I hated the throttle. Call G2 egronomics and they will know what you need. Best $100 you can spend on the bike. It will give you more range to roll on what you want instead of the all or nothing throttle. Plus when you get on the verge of that hit, even a bump in the trail can cause your elbow to drop and then that explosive hit, whisky throttle. That break in.... that sounds crazy. Even at 80:1 the bike comes scary lean from the factory.  Mileage is great, but lean.  I would never run, LOL, dont know what happened to my font, 50:1 in the jets that the Freeride comes with.  I'm surprised at this. I wonder if this is his own idea or from the factory.? Is your fan coming on much?  The bike is great, it is easy to keep it moving. When everyone else is getting hung up, somehow it just keeps going

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I haven't checked to see if the fan is coming on or not. I didn't really notice a ton of heat. If I get time today, I'll edit down some of the go pro footage from my first time out on it, maybe you can take a quick look/listen. The throttle tamer looks awesome. I was looking at the 'dirt tamer' last night. Is that what you're running? If not can you tell me what cam you settled on? 

Oh yeah, going from sitting to standing isn't a problem that I've noticed. I've only been riding a few years, and I learned in the first year that I feel more stable standing. So I pretty much always stand up. I am starting to try to sit for corners. My first 2 years my legs ached from standing all the time but I think they're just used to it now.

 

Edit: added the video link: Listen from about 0:55 to 1:10.. I got on the gas, it sounds good, get off, then back on... and wtf is it doing to make that sound?

 

Edited by J5k
added video link

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Thanks for the video. Looking forward to more. I think that noise, was a blubber, where it was almost like on choke. The Freeride has that aneurysm of the main. So it pulls fuel from vacuum without your control. For experiment, under controled circumstances, raise the idle and notice how it effects the bike in very negative ways. Be prepared to stall it out if you go to  far and it hangs at WOT. Then you will know where these blubbers come from. I have the one that G2Egro sold me. I can look at my receipt. And the cam, I'll figure it out based on what is missing from what was sent. PM me your youtube channel.

Edited by 1gr8bldr

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Thanks, That's the only riding video I have on youtube. I'll let you know when I post more though. I'm hoping my pace picks up as I get used to the FR. Had it out for a little rip around the yard this afternoon, such an easy to ride bike. I need to clear out the little bit of trails I cut around my property so I can actually ride it instead of worrying about how much grass I'm destroying. 

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10 minutes ago, J5k said:

Thanks, That's the only riding video I have on youtube. I'll let you know when I post more though. I'm hoping my pace picks up as I get used to the FR. Had it out for a little rip around the yard this afternoon, such an easy to ride bike. I need to clear out the little bit of trails I cut around my property so I can actually ride it instead of worrying about how much grass I'm destroying. 

Once you start obstacle playing, that throttle will get you hurt. Slow jumps, elbow drop, whiskel throttle, bike runs out from under you. Even now with mine tamed, a double long wheelie almost gets me at the second log

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Yeah I'll probably order the tamer this week. It comes with a few cams correct? 

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1 hour ago, J5k said:

Yeah I'll probably order the tamer this week. It comes with a few cams correct? 

The guys at g2 Egro can tell you want you need. The first one I got was a 1st step, you might say. The second one I got was perfect. I'll see if I can figure it out. They are very helpful.... and know the Freeride

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