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Entry 57 // Finally Fixing my bike.

Update by: Luke | May 3rd, 2011

Ok, so if you have been following along, you know I have bike problems. There is a lot going on with this story. So I'll do a litle recap to help keep everything straight. Aside from all of my other bike problems from the past, I developed another serious problem in Djibouti. My bike's throttle body went into emergency mode and threw a fuel injection (F.I.) code. This F.I. code is 9 long flashes. I called my KTM 690 go to guy John. He has never heard of this problem before. The code means that the "throttle valve position is not plausable" Since the bike thinks that is what is happening, the computer takes over and I lose my throttle control. The bike will not let me snap the throttle or have any acceleration more than an aircooled 250. In other words, the bike is running, but it runs like crap. The exhaust pops, and there is no power. Turning the ignition on and off fixes the problem until it happens again. That's a vauge statement, but it's 100% true. Sometimes the bike will throw the code in 300 miles or only 30 feet. You can't predict it, but you can predict that is will be frustrating when it happens again, and trust me it WILL happen again. So, what do I do? Replace what's broken.

John sent me his Throttle body that is off his spare rally bike. I put that one on at the airport, like I told you in entry 54, but I threw the same code twice within 30 minutes of driving. What is my problem? Yes, 690 readers, I did the 15 minute idle before trying the bike. No, the bike was not cold. The bad news is this wasn't a plug and play like I had hoped. The good news is, I got a contact here in Istanbul who can fix it. His name is Dominic. I found out where he hangs out and it happens to be 1 block from where we are staying? In a city of 18 million people what are the odds?

A. is the shop. X is where we are staying.Dominic is not a KTM employee. He is a 690 owner who was frustrated how the bikes ran and took the time to figure them out. He's had multipule 690's and is regarded as one of the best 690 tuners in the world. If this guy can't fix my bike I'm just plan screwed. We plug the bike into the computer and get working. According to the KTM program and Dominic's eye my TPS reading looks too high. He fiddles with that until it's in the lower .5 range. Next, he puts the stock mapping back on my bike. In Cape Town, the KTM techs put the Avapovic Map on my bike in an effort to fix my problems there. People on forums are starting to agree that the stock map is better because it is a "closed loop" system. That means it uses the oxygen sensor in the header and air sensor in the airbox and is constantly adjusting the mapping for the current real time conditions. Now I switch out throttle body's and he adjusts my old broken one too. We do the 15 minute idle, and he takes the bike for a spin. It feels good. He likes it. All done problem solved. It's as simple as that. KTM really should give you this tool with the bike, and show you what the values need to read.

John's throttle body that he sent me. Dominic working the computer.The shop owner working the throttle as part of the reset.The owner was really cool. He saw that I needed a new front tire and dug through the bone yard. He pulled out a beautiful front with hardly any ware on it. He said it was from a customer that swaps out front and rears at 5,000 K no matter how bad or good they look. He tosses it my way and says it's free. I can't believe this. This is a motorcycle shop that sells tires to make money, and he just gives me a tire for free with 80% life still on it. What a guy. A much better guy in my opinion that the fellow motorcycle travelor who sold me a junk tire at Jungle Junction that she was going to leave behind. I was desperate and needed somthing, and she saw a chance to make a buck.

I slaped on the tire and changed the oil, so I'd be all ready to leave in the morning. I finish up around 9:00 and Ben and Nick stop by to head up to the Unitited football game. I thank the owner for all the help and keeping his shop open extra late for me. This is coolest shop, I've ever been at. Thanks a lot guys.The next morning we are packed and ready to go. We say good buy to our new friends, but can't leave before they tag us with an ATA Moto sticker. We are all smiles as we leave. Thanks for the European hospitality. It feels awesome to have a running bike again.




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