Anyone remove the electric start?

I'm looking at a an EXC and it seems that the enduros only come in electric start, but they all have the backup kickstarter. I can imagine after taking out the battery and motor and such that you could save some serious poundage.

1.)Is it hard to start with the kickstarter?

2.)Has anyone tried this and if so how much weight can you save?


2000 WR400F - Throttle stop shortened, Grey Wire Cut, Filter Cover Removed, Panoram Computer. . Feel Free to chat: Yahoo IM nevitt33, AOL IM Nevitt 33

Maybe you should take a look at the 400 SX. It has the same tranny as the MXC model in the 400. No estarter and the latest suspension. It'd probably be stiff for the woods, though.

Yes, the KTM RFS's are all easy to kickstart. They have automatic decompression so there's no drill. Kick them like a 2 stroke.

I've read where at least one person removed the estarter. Pretty rare, though. I understand the weight savings, if you take the wiring, battery holder, relays, etc., to be about 14lbs. You'll need to buy a cap for the hole where estarter mounts into the engine, too.


John Brunsgaard

01 400 EXC, 99 250 EXC (gone), 99 200 EXC, 98 125 EXC, 98 380 MXC (long gone)

14 lbs seems like A LOT for not many people to be interested in doing this. Maybe people get a start or two with the button and can't get themselves to go back to kicking. smile.gif

Has anyone weighed their MXC or EXC? The KTM website says that they're all 246.8 lbs whether you get the 400 or the 520. I find that hard to believe. Also, if you can really save 14 lbs by taking out the starting system, then that would put these bikes at 233 lbs. This is 2 lbs lighter than the almighty lightness of the CRF450 with an aluminum frame!!! And you get the lighting package to boot.

It sounds like the right bike for me is the EXC because of the wider ratio tranny, and I'll just have to put a bigger tank on it. Anyone know if the MXC tank fits the EXC?

[This message has been edited by Thumper33 (edited October 08, 2001).]

I had big intensions of taking the starter off of my 520exc - for same reason that I have never had trouble starting 4 strokes (even the wr400) so why have the extra weight. I wanted the wide ratio 6spd so got the exc for that reason only. BUT - after a couple of rides two things became apparent:

1. This bike feels waaaay lighter and more flickable than the WR. Gone is the topheavy feeling - gone is the awkwardness in tight spots - hmmm - do I really care about the weight? I just did some complete play riding on mine on Saturday and continue to just have a cheesy grin at how fun and light this bike feels.

2. E-start is damn handy! It's not that this bike is hard to start (I do it for kicks sometimes) but there is a new dimension to trail riding when you really don't care if the bike stalls - as long as you can get your hand on the handlebar - it will start.

I will be very curious to hear if you actually take the e-start off!


Unless your Shane Watts, I wouldn't recommend removing the e-starter. There are other areas you can shave off pounds - like removing the kick stand, getting a lighter pipe/silencer, etc... The e-starter is an invaluable asset to the KTM!

side note: I've kicked it over a few times and it starts just as easy as my CR250. But, when I'm stuck on the side of a hill or dead tired after a 60 mile jaunt through the desert, nothing is more pleasurable than pushing a button to start it.

Originally posted by nljustin:

Unless your Shane Watts, I wouldn't recommend removing the e-starter. There are other areas you can shave off pounds - like removing the kick stand, getting a lighter pipe/silencer, etc... The e-starter is an invaluable asset to the KTM!

I'm not sure if I'll have the guts to take features off a new bike yet, but you have to agree... If you can take poundage off with aftermarket exhaust and such and feel a difference, then an additional 14 lbs would make a huge difference. I've never had a bike w/ electric start so maybe I don't know what I'm missing yet. I'm just thinking that I'd rather trade 14 lbs for electric start. Especially if its easier to start than my 2000 WR400. I always thought it was pretty easy to start and it's supposed to be one of the hardest.

I guess one easy way to tell how much of a difference 14 lbs would make is to take a 15 lbs dumbell and affix it to the bike somehow. You'd have to make sure that it's approximately the same height as the parts you'd take off to make the handling change accordingly. Maybe the weight is so low on the frame that it really doesn't effect a lean too much. Call me crazy... I'm just brainstorming here people.

[This message has been edited by Thumper33 (edited October 08, 2001).]

As I mentioned above - if you are coming from a WR - I think the KTM will feel so much lighter that you won't be looking to shed pounds (and then the e-start grows on you and you won't consider taking it off).

Go ride one. My 520 is only 25 lbs lighter than my DRZ400 but it feels 100lbs lighter.

ps.. I laid my bike down on a hill on the right side, and slid back into a tree."between the fender and rear tire"

I would have been there waiting for someone exept I had Estart.....

<font color="orange">I would suppose that rather than removing the e-start, you could remove the kickstarter to shave some weight off grin.gif

I am totally envious of my Dad touching the magic button on his 520 EXC while I must go through the process of starting my 426F. My bike starts first kick always, but he can always start his faster!

I've also had this from a buddy that rides a 520: "Haha, I can start my bike with my nose! VROOM! VROOM!"

Back to weight: I do think some serious tonage could be lost with an aftermarket exhaust. Or go on a diet.

Good luck



Remember: racing is normally only 5% machine and 95% rider! I am quite certain the marginal weight loss from removing the E-start will not significantly impact on your race results. Think about it!

Very good point, Cappy. This chase to lose every ounce blows me away. Maybe it's more important for MX or the very top guys but for most of us, IMO, the bike (at least the KTM RFS's) are not holding us back. I could go on a diet and shave 10 pounds off the bike.

My bike does not feel heavy to me in the tight woods. It does not push through corners or fight me. The only time I notice the weight is if I get it stuck in a mudhole. And the 4 stroke power makes that happen less often as it finds traction where my 2 strokes would just dig in. But when I do get it stuck, I'm glad I'm a fairly big guy.

My 400 weighed in at 257 this summer. That was almost exactly the same weight as a buddies WR400. Both had no gas. Mine had an SSS, an Aloop P3 enduro computer and a plethora of guards the WR was not wearing, though. I've ridden both bikes back to back and the KTM feels MUCH lighter and way less top heavy. The 400/520SX spec says somethin near 235lbs so it's within 2lbs of the CR450f.

The weight between the 520 and 400 should be very, very close. I think the only differences are the crank (I don't think it's any bigger, just relocated crank pin for a longer stroke), camshaft, connecting rod, piston, cylinder and ignition. And the bigger piston should be offset by the bigger bore in the cylinder.

The MXC tank is big. I owned one for one ride. It made it harder for me to stay forward on the bike. It's just the ticket for really long distance riding, though. Clarke offers a 3.1 gallon clear tank for the RFS that looks pretty good.


John Brunsgaard

01 400 EXC, 99 250 EXC (gone), 99 200 EXC, 98 125 EXC, 98 380 MXC (long gone)

[This message has been edited by jeb (edited October 09, 2001).]

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