3 months ago


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sand can again be

sand can again be attributed to the bulk of the bikes weight being situated lower down, as a top heavy bike tends to give a lot more feedback and movement in sandy conditions, a scary feeling especially if experienced by a novice. After topping up with fuel in Modimolle we head even further into the Bushveld. The tank holds 20L of fuel, giving you the freedom to really go out and explore before having to worry about seeking that fuel station again. KTM claims the bike gets 450km on a tank of fuel, which should be achievable in more normal circumstances, for us it was however a bit less as there was plenty of sand on our route, giving us an average of about 5L/100km. Eventually the road took us to a pass we haven’t ridden before near the settlement of Overyssel. In this area the roads were in exceptionally bad condition strewn with ruts and ditches and I found myself more comfortable at speeds between 80km/h to 100km/h. The KTM 790”S” sports the Apex 43mm front forks with 200mm of suspension travel, which has so far performed exceptionally well in both sandy and rocky terrain, it does however start to feel out of its comfort zone when hitting big obstacles, such as deep ditches, at higher speeds and I naturally slowed down a bit more for these. The bike does however have a builtin steering damper which helps to absorb these big hits and keeps you in control. If, ultimately riding hard and constantly pushing boundaries is something you like to do, this would be where the decision of purchasing the “S” vs the “R” model would come into play. We reach the town of Lephalale later that afternoon, just in time for the braai! I ask my father who has always been passionate about bikes, to tell me what he thinks of the KTM 790”S”. He immediately grabs the opportunity to swing his leg over the saddle and takes the bike for a spin around the block. He hasn’t ridden for many years and also hasn’t been in the loop with the latest biking trends or models, but comes back with a big smile on his face nonetheless. “I like it, it looks big, but it isn’t really, just so easy to ride, and ohhhh all that power!” he says as he dismounts. Well there you have it, a truly unbiased opinion. Final Thought A couple of years ago, when the previous gen KTM 950 and 990 Adventures ruled the roost, there were very few people who rode the taller “R” models, a trend which has become more popular in recent years. I myself rode the older KTM 950 Adventure quite extensively, a bike I truly enjoyed and believe that with the 790 range KTM is trying to bring back the mind-set that you don’t need the “R” model to be able to venture off the beaten track. Overall I find the KTM 790”S” a very capable all-rounder, a bike that truly is in its element on the long road, and also more than capable enough to handle the adventurous dirt roads we enjoy riding. If you are in the market for a 790, I highly recommend trying both the “S” and “R” models, you may just be surprised as to what the “S” can do. Trax KTM 021 0190 I want to extend my thanks to Trax KTM for letting me use their “Dirt Convert” KTM 790 Adventure yet again. It’s a great conversion for shorter riders. And the handsome Fella’s at Dirt And Trail magazine for the media pass to get out and about! WHAT TO LOOK FOR WHEN BUYING USED TYRES.......... WE NOW HAVE TWO CASES WHERE CLIENTS HAVE BOUGHT USED TYRES FROM TYRE DEALERS AND FITTED THEM ONLY TO DISCOVER THAT THE BEADS HAVE BEEN CUT. Upon closer inspection, the cut bead was discovered. Please guys, be very careful. Tyres are one of the most critical safety components on your bike. New is always best - but if you do buy used do not only look at the tread. It might look great but there is more to it: Inspect the sidewalls for cuts, cracks, ballooning and structural strength. The bead is what holds your tyre on the rim. Dealers are cutting the beads on used tyres that are deemed unsafe so that they are not re-sold. This is a “Must Read” it is for your own good: It is not a debate about whether to buy a new or used tyre it is about people who buy and sell used tyres making sure that the tyres are SAFE. Times are tough - we get that. We have also bought used tyres and most times they have been OK. Earlier this month we received a call about a gent who bought a used tyre for his GS from a dealer on the East Rand. No problem - we have all been there, it is a saving, not everyone can afford new tyres, especially in our current economic climate. The tyre looked OK, the tread was decent, no obvious cracks etc - but the gent failed to notice that the bead had been cut - which means that the tyre is KAPUT and not good for use. He had the tyre fitted and headed out - and promptly got a huge tank slapper... Luckily he controlled it and managed to get the bike through to the Bike Tyre Warehouse outfit. Inspect the beading to make sure it is not damaged, cut or pulling out of the rubber. Check the inside of the tyre for hidden patches, gators, cuts and objects piercing through and the like as well as for something that looks similar in texture to elephant skin, this is indicative of the tyre having been run flat for extended periods. Look for cracks between and in the treads, this can show perishing from age as well as a further indicator of the tyre having been abused or run flat. Any used tyre has generally been replaced for a reason. What is that reason? Did it run flat? Is there a hole? Too many patches? Is it old? - look for the date of manufacture on the side if the tyre wall. As we said earlier, new is always better and there are always some very affordable options and great specials from most of the major tyre brands… ask your local dealer about them. Dealers, We cannot tell you how to do your job, but - If you sell a used tyre please inspect it properly... We are very glad that there was no serious injury... The bee's knees