To RC8, or not.. - 2018 KTM 790 Duke Forum
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post #1 of 27 (permalink) Old 12-05-2019, 06:28 PM Thread Starter
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To RC8, or not..

I hate threads where someone says "help me decide"...but alas, I find myself in a position where I need to solicit advice from my fellow motor heads. Unless you have a best friend who rides, nobody else can appreciate these types of problems

I've found myself dreaming about another bike. Here’s the thing, I love sportbikes, always have and always will, but it seems like all of the manufacturers have made it their sole mission to try and physically shrink the size of the bikes to a point where someone > 6’ just doesn’t fit…sure it can be done if you don’t care about how it looks or that it doesn’t feel like anyone designed it with you in mind.

Anyway, back in August I traded my 690 enduro (which I owned for 7 months) for a 790 duke. I realized I was a street rider at heart and even with a supermoto style setup on the 690 it just wasn’t planted enough on the street. I’ve really been enjoying the 790 – and at the time I had been contemplating a 1290, but the price gap was ridiculous. The 790 has performed really well on my trip to North Carolina this past September, and I couldn’t have asked for better handling and light weight bike for those twisties. All was good in 790 land ….

Fast forward to this past weekend and I'm doing my typical Saturday morning browsing of Kijiji motorcycle ads, just checking things out and then…wait, what’s this? OMG I totally forgot about this bike…the KTM RC8R! Not only is there one for sale nearby, there are two (a 2015 and a 2014) within 1.5hr drive from me. This is the holy grail sportbike for taller riders!

Flash forward a few days and I’ve contacted both dealerships…it was like something was making me do this . I'm within a couple of hundred bucks of my self-imposed limit on what I would spend on the trade to make this work, so let's just assume an agreement on price could be reached at this point.

So here are my pros and cons for the RC8R:
+ Drop dead gorgeous bike (IMHO) – angular, muscular, svelte yet significant in size at the same time
+ Adjustable ergos for taller riders (pegs, bars, sub-frame – all adjustable from factory)
+ V-twin torque with lot’s of power
+ Light – pretty similar weight to the duke 790 but + 70hp.
+ Stock componentry is great (WP adjustable suspension, Brembo brakes, forged wheels etc.)
+ Somehow it’s $500 cheaper per season on insurance vs. the 790 :shrug:
+ Doesn’t need to be rung out to make power
+ Looks amazing…did I already say that?

- 5 year-old bike
- No ABS, TC, quickshifter etc.
- Not too many were sold, parts aren’t cheap (OEM or aftermarket)
- Dash isn’t nearly as informative or nice to look at compared to the 790
- Having to explain to the wife why I can’t keep the same bike for more than a few months….again 😊

What to do??? I have a bike that I really like, the 790 does everything I need it to…and it looks good. Not as good as a sportbike, in my opinion, but cool in that naked bike way. The power is more than sufficient for the street, it’s comfortable to ride for hours at a time and it’s packed with newer tech. It does everything I need …now I see the RC8 and it’s pressing the everything I want button.

Option B of course is keep the 790 and invest what I would have been willing to spend on the trade to create a really top end 790 (suspension, brakes, carbon bits…). Option C, keep the 790 and buy the RC8, isn't really an option in my mind. I’ve had multiple bikes in the garage at the same time before and you can only ride one at a time. Doesn’t make sense, for me at least, unless they’re each unique enough in their purpose – i.e. dirtbike + streetbike. I’d likely pick one that I’d ride more often than not and then wonder why I’m paying insurance for both.

Maybe after typing all of this I’m not really asking what should I do…maybe I’m just looking for someone to say “it’s ok, you’re not any crazier than the rest of us”, lol.
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post #2 of 27 (permalink) Old 12-05-2019, 09:10 PM
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It's ok, you're not any crazier than the rest of us.

I've always lusted for the RC8R, but the scarcity, and possible lack of parts availability scares me.

You sound a lot like me actually. But, honestly, if I were facing the same decision, and I could give myself unbiased advice, I would say keep the 790, and instead of spending any money on upgrades, put that money away to use later, when you get another new bike itch that must be scratched.
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post #3 of 27 (permalink) Old 12-06-2019, 03:16 AM
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Repeat after me . . . . I am not crazy, I just love how bikes make me feel!

In answer to your question. I have a friend who had an RC8. He is a good rider & has had many bikes. He had the KTM for a couple of years
& we went on many rides & it was impressive. All the good things you mentioned, including grin factor.

So. . . Having ridden with & next to him, my thoughts are, although the 790 is down on power, everything else is spot on, with the exception of suspension, which is okay for the majority of the time, I can see myself upgrading after a year or 2 (I take my time with these things!)
Out of corners in particular, I’m keeping up with or faster than bigger bikes of my friends (most have said. .bloody ****, that thing is fast!)

I lost my quick shifter for a couple of weeks after 6500 miles (clutch switch fixed in warranty) & boy did I miss it!!

So in summary. . . I would miss the latest tech on my 790 if going to a RC8 & also having ridden with another friend on a ADV1290,
Unless it was in a straight line, I had to wait for him to catch up on the twisties!

But, we are all driven by different things, so I hope this helps, but if you decide otherwise I would still wave to you on the road
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post #4 of 27 (permalink) Old 12-06-2019, 03:35 AM
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There is no way I'd go back to clip-ons now. If I was not so vertically challenged - I'd be looking at a 1290GT. But I simply do not fit. On a 1290R I do.

That said I've a few mates with 1290's who all say the same. Had the 790 been about when they bought the 1290, they'd have probably bought a 790. This was part of my impulse to buy the 790 I found second hand.

But I cannot fault the idea. At the moment I have 3 bikes in the garage.

Small steps - Day by Day.
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post #5 of 27 (permalink) Old 12-06-2019, 03:47 AM
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Why don't you go test ride one then decide. Nice long test ride.

2019 KTM Duke 790
2015 Ducati Monster 821
2002 Honda XR400R
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post #6 of 27 (permalink) Old 12-06-2019, 12:38 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by colombo View Post
Why don't you go test ride one then decide. Nice long test ride.
Oh what I would give to be able to test ride a bike before buying! Unfortunately in my area there aren't any test rides unless you catch one of the manufacturer days where they bring around the fleet...and for a bike that's no longer sold new it can't ever happen.

I've only had the chance to test ride 1 of the 17+ bikes I've owned to date - and it was because I know the owner of the dealership and the bike was used (2008 Hypermotard 1100S). Most of our dealers aren't large enough to get bikes they can set aside as demo's and b/c we only have a 7 month riding season I think bikes are seen a luxury type of hobby where folks want a 0km (or mile) odometer when they pay full price for something.

Thank goodness for online reviews, videos and sites like cycle ergos, it's the only way to eliminate some of the guess work. I'm very jealous of anyone who lives in a place where motorcycle buyers have enough choice to make the dealers "work for it". Every time I hear of someone getting a loaner bike while they wait for service it blows my mind. I've only ever been given the option of wait for the bike or get someone to pick you up and bring you back when it's ready, lol.
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post #7 of 27 (permalink) Old 12-06-2019, 01:56 PM
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Hombre... You've owned Super Bikes, you love them. It's mostly all I've ever owned for a reason.

That RC8 is pure beast. Do it. The fact that you wrote as much as you did, tells me the level of thought you put into it.

You're already sold on it.

The alleged 'technology' on newer motos, well, it makes little difference to people like us, because we learned how to ride proper and fassst, prior to their existence, so now all that new tech, is either a bonus, or a hinderance.

You know you want it, so just buy it...

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post #8 of 27 (permalink) Old 12-06-2019, 02:45 PM
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I’ve an rc8 akrapovic le, owned it for near on 7 years now which is unusual for me.
The thing that makes me keep it is the looks as I’ve never really got on with the riding experience having done a paltry 500 miles since I bought it.
It only has 800 miles on it from new.
Whereas I’ve managed 5000 miles on a 790 in less than a year.
Maybe I’ll get the rc8 back out in the spring and give it another go.
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post #9 of 27 (permalink) Old 12-06-2019, 03:48 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by J D View Post
Hombre... You've owned Super Bikes, you love them. It's mostly all I've ever owned for a reason.

That RC8 is pure beast. Do it. The fact that you wrote as much as you did, tells me the level of thought you put into it.

You're already sold on it.

The alleged 'technology' on newer motos, well, it makes little difference to people like us, because we learned how to ride proper and fassst, prior to their existence, so now all that new tech, is either a bonus, or a hinderance.

You know you want it, so just buy it...
Hahaha, only took 6 replies to find the enabler, lol
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post #10 of 27 (permalink) Old 12-06-2019, 04:01 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pgm View Post
I’ve an rc8 akrapovic le, owned it for near on 7 years now which is unusual for me.
The thing that makes me keep it is the looks as I’ve never really got on with the riding experience having done a paltry 500 miles since I bought it.
It only has 800 miles on it from new.
Whereas I’ve managed 5000 miles on a 790 in less than a year.
Maybe I’ll get the rc8 back out in the spring and give it another go.
Thanks for the response, I'm interested in understanding why you think your RC8 hasn't seen more miles than it has to date. Is the bike just not as fun as expected? I've had bikes before where I come back from a ride and think "that was good, I had fun...but I'm good with doing something else now" and others where I think "crap...how do I get more time to ride, or I wonder what errand I can pretend to be doing?"
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