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09 ktm 450 xcw top end help

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Hello everyone!

im sure there has been a post about this but I am having trouble finding it! With that being said, I am new to the site and just picked up my FIRST Ktm this week after years of street bikes. I bought the bike for $2400 but it is burning oil badly and was hoping I could do the work myself to save some money. The previous owner told me it is still original piston and rings (which I know the rings were a problem in 09). I'm nervous bc I have never done a top end before but am excited to learn and I've always preferred working/fixing my own toys. I am planning on starting tomorrow but would greatly appreciate any help/advice you have to offer. Is there anything I need to know before I begin? Thank you in advance!!!

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I plan on replacing the top end in my '08 450 EXCR but haven't gotten to it yet (keep spending money on other parts :p). But I suggest getting quality tools when for the rebuild if you don't have a good set, hell get good tools for any work on your bike. I've had times where a socket or tool breaking caused a major headache down the road which could have been avoided.

Cheap isn't good. Good isn't cheap.

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Alright guys, I started working on the bike. Got the tank off and fluids drained and found this while taking it apart. Seems to be a lot of metal flakes/shavings on the gear oil drain plug as well as in the screen. Since this is my first time I'm freaking out a little bit and wondering if I have a bigger problem. Can you guys give me any insight as to what I'm looking at? The clutch seemed to slip when I was riding it before, could this be from that? Tonight I will be taking the carburetor off and then the cyclinder....just wondering what my next step should be. 

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Any idea when the PO last changed the gear box oil?  I personally would clean the plug and screen, refill with oil and ride it a few hours and drain it again and see what you got.  If you bought the bike for 2400 it may have been a bit on the neglected side.  Which is good for you, go through it and give it some TLC and I'm sure it will be a good bike for you.

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3 minutes ago, ThirdCoastRider said:

No clue as to when he may or may not have changed it, but I have a feeling it was few and far between. Should I still do the top end and then ride it around?

If you haven't torn it down yet, yeah clean the screen and plug and ride it a bit.  I would use Rotella 15/40 or T6 oil, cheap and available at walmart and works great. That's all I use.

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Most of that looks like clutch material IMO.  Check with a magnet and see if the material on the screen is magnetic, if it's not its most likely clutch basket fingers which is normal. 

Who knows the PO might not have know it has two reservoirs.  Was only changing the engine side.....

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The clutch really sucks btw. As soon as I kick it into first it will start taking off or stall out...not sure if that means anything but thanks for the help Scott

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Could be the hydraulic clutch needs bled or the fluid replaced, like anything it needs serviced. This is all stuff you can do yourself, lots of videos out there. You've got a good bike, just tackle one issue at a time.  

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alright, so please forgive my ignorance, but I am trying to comprehend how the metal shavings got into the transmission. I guess I do not fully understand how the oil configuration works. Is the gear box oil separate from the engine oil? I'm trying to figure where the shavings are coming from or maybe bad seal somewhere?

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46 minutes ago, ThirdCoastRider said:

alright, so please forgive my ignorance, but I am trying to comprehend how the metal shavings got into the transmission. I guess I do not fully understand how the oil configuration works. Is the gear box oil separate from the engine oil? I'm trying to figure where the shavings are coming from or maybe bad seal somewhere?

Yes the gearbox oil is separate from the engine oil.  Gearbox oil encompasses the clutch, IMO this is where the flakes on your screen originated from.  Are the flakes aluminum?  Non magnetic?  Only the engine side oil has a paper filter, what does the paper filter look like?  Any material in the filter? You may try and find a manual online and download it.

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Hey guys, I know it's been a long time but just wanted to let you all know the top end rebuild went really well and could. It have done it without the help from all of you. I've been riding the bike the past 3 weeks and love being back in the dirt! Unfortunately another issue came up (I believe completely unrelated to the top end) but just wanted to say a big thanks!!!

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