KTM 790 Duke Forum banner

1 - 20 of 54 Posts

·
Super-Moderator
'20 890R
Joined
·
443 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
It's a bit of a long-winded story about how I came to buy my 890R today so I'll skip over that part except to say I had no intention of upgrading right now for many reasons, but low and behold - my 790 was traded in today and I'm now the VERY proud new owner of an 890.

I'll try to summarize my thoughts and impressions to make it easy to read and not too rambling, so point form here we come:

Looks - meh, subjective, eye of the beholder, yada yada - IMO no issues with it especially since I pulled off the stock mirrors and installed the bar end mirrors from my 790.

Brakes - as advertised. Unbelievable. I haven't even checked to see what setting they are on or anything - just rode it away from the dealer and wow - perfect blend of power, feel, and initial bite.

Suspension - just like the brakes - I didn't turn a knob, never set sag, nada - just got on and rode. As is - damn near perfectly suited for my tastes which means compliant yet supportive which these WP units have in spades.

Engine - okay, no joke, it feels like KTM made a 990R and someone in the decal dept eff'ed up and printed 890 stickers and they just said "Sure, lets run with it" - it's that much stronger than the 790. Zero chance it's not the biggest undersell of the century by a bike manufacturer - KTM, take a frickin' bow.

Fueling - easily the biggest surprise for me was how different the fueling is on the 790 and 890. I rode it home 10 miles from the dealer in Street mode and it was great - maybe a small bit better than the 790 but not a massive change. Got home and made some tweaks to the bike (more on that below) and once in leathers and ready to properly ride - I changed to Track mode and somehow it seemed even smoother than street mode - polar opposite to my 790 where track was code for "you better be hustling and stay above 6500rpm or this bike will feel awful" - the 890R ECU somehow guesses what you want and helps with the input - go in hot and chop the throttle - perfect decel with no chassis pitching. Same for grabbing a handful anywhere - meters in the ideal input and sends you away with no drama.

Ergo's - bike is taller and slightly sportier with the lower bars which I LOVE. Wouldn't change a thing except maybe if it was a track bike I'd opt for knurled pegs as the rubber mounted ones while comfy are a tad slippy.

Transmission - gearbox is indeed tighter and more compact. Still has the usual clunk from 1st up through N and into 2nd but from then on out it's magical and although the 790 wasn't bad once I learned it's preferences, this one is a noticeable step up.

Ti(y)res - I've been a Dunlop fanboy for the last 8-9 years as they sponsored me as a club racer and took great care of me trackside and with Contingency money from wins/podiums BUT... man these Power Cup 2 tires are insanely good. Scrubbed to the edges on the rear tire in 5-6 miles of back road riding and not a hint of wiggle, instability, or chatter. Fingers crossed they hold up for 4000km's (2500 miles) - if so I'll be a convert!

Changes - so like all of you I made some minor changes already and a couple more to come:

  • kept seat and passenger pegs off - mirrors swapped for bar ends too.
  • had the dealer completely wipe down the chain and remove all shipping grease. they test rode it and cleaned it again - after my longer ride there was very minor splatter and no leaks or seepage under the front sprocket.
  • had the dealer put the bars in their most forward position and roll them ahead a small bit - feels perfect.
  • had to adjust clutch and brake levers down slightly as they were too high for my liking - sadly both are only able to move a small amount which was enough but I would have liked more range.
  • Dealer set tire pressures WAY high as usual, I got home from the 10 mile commute and 20 minutes later checked em - 44F and 46R - yowza. Dropped them to 34F and 36R for my ride then check again when I got home and they were hot - they went up to 36 and 38 so I dropped another 2lbs - I'll leave them there going forward unless I see abnormal wear. (32F, 34R cold I'm guessing)
  • I've got the 790 PP heated grips ready to get installed and I'll also take advantage of @Rick to swap the steering damper fluid from 5W up to 15W like he did on my 790 a few weeks back and that was a great help.
  • I ordered up one of those Faux Akra's from AliExpress today - 50% curiosity, 50% in the hopes it's workable and I can see the 3lb weight saving and the much improved aesthetics.
TL;DR Recap - killer bike, 100% can recommend.

Pic for attention as the kids say.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
Where area are you located? My dealer here in Oakville, Ontario just emailed me today saying his KTM rep still hasn't given him a delivery date. I've been waiting for weeks. Congrats on getting the bike. Sounds awesome.
 

·
Super-Moderator
'20 890R
Joined
·
443 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Where area are you located? My dealer here in Oakville, Ontario just emailed me today saying his KTM rep still hasn't given him a delivery date. I've been waiting for weeks. Congrats on getting the bike. Sounds awesome.
Victoria, BC.

A friend is waiting on his as well from a dealer in Vancouver - it was supposed to be in this week but no word so far. There doesn't seem to be any method to KTM''s shipping madness.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Thanks for the quick review, looks like the test ride made you buy it :). I am looking at the 890R or start upgrading my 790. Is it really that much different to ride and worth the extra change over money to get the 890R?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
TL;DR Recap - killer bike, 100% can recommend.
That's all I needed to hear, omw to the dealership. :LOL:

Congrats man, sounds like you made the right choice, especially after reading about the engine. Interesting to read about changing the steering damper fluid to a heavier weight, something I'll be interested in doing in the future.

I bought mine and won't be able to ride it for another couple months, but reading these positive comments make my excitement grow. Ordered a Chinese knockoff exhaust earlier today as well to get a bit more noise. I'm sure by the time I get home I'll have a list of parts to get installed before the first ride.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
124 Posts
Suspension-wise @YoungLion isn't even comparing to stock rubbish, he had Andreani+Ohlins on the 790. Even without fork preload I'm sure the 890 suspension is a dream. :)

I just wish I hadn't ordered Andreani cartridges and a Nitron R3 a few weeks before the 890 price got released. We were all expecting $15-16k CDN after being told the 790 was spec'd down to meet a price point.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
15 Posts
I have to agree with YoungLion, everything he said was spot on in what I was going to write in my first review. Thank you for saving me the time. Moving the bars forward it gold in my opinion, def. changed the way the bike felt. That being said, mine is now in the shop after 181 mile due to eating an exhaust valve.....it happens.. people forget to put certain screw/bolts in etc... So I'm patiently waiting for the new motor to arrive and will start my build thread with my first major mod....a new motor.
 

·
Super-Moderator
'20 890R
Joined
·
443 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Thanks for the quick review, looks like the test ride made you buy it :). I am looking at the 890R or start upgrading my 790. Is it really that much different to ride and worth the extra change over money to get the 890R?
I'm sorry if I didn't clarify in my post but there was no test ride - I bought it without ever riding one. I rode it home from the dealer yesterday, made some tweaks and got geared up, then went for a short but informative ride of 80kms (50 miles).
 

·
Super-Moderator
'20 890R
Joined
·
443 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
I bought mine and won't be able to ride it for another couple months, but reading these positive comments make my excitement grow. Ordered a Chinese knockoff exhaust earlier today as well to get a bit more noise. I'm sure by the time I get home I'll have a list of parts to get installed before the first ride.
Are you deployed or just live somewhere REALLY cold? LOL...

Keep us posted when you're back and have your mile-long parts list installed!
 

·
Super-Moderator
'20 890R
Joined
·
443 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
That being said, mine is now in the shop after 181 mile due to eating an exhaust valve.....it happens.. people forget to put certain screw/bolts in etc... So I'm patiently waiting for the new motor to arrive and will start my build thread with my first major mod....a new motor.
Oh damn... Kudo's to you on the positive outlook though - most would be ranting and raving - not "It happens" - very mature approach man!

Your handle - is it short for Black Market Graphix Chef and if so - care to enlighten the meaning behind it - are you a Chef? (y)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
15 Posts
Yes, but only cooking part time now to have more time at home with family...if you've been in that industry you understand how it is. I do graphics full time for a local KTM shop here in TX. There is no point in getting too worked up over things I cannot control, thankful it didn't lock up and throw me down. We didn't make it past the top end when we tore it down, motor is going back to KTM once I have the new one.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
Awesome to hear you are enjoying it. I've been debating moving my bars forward, I'm interested in how different the turn in will feel.
After riding 350 curvy mountain miles last weekend in Ozark Nation Forest my odometer is sitting just over a 1000 miles! (yes i trailered 9 hours just to ride with some friends for two days) I swear it feels like its making more power as I add miles.
On a few of the straights we got to do a some pulls and I can confirm the 890 easily outran a Z900, Shiver 900, and Mt-09.
 

·
Super-Moderator
'20 890R
Joined
·
443 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
In case anyone's interested, I weighed my 890R today on the same scale as I weighed my 790 on last week.

790 had passenger pegs, grab rail, and stock mirrors removed - otherwise a full tank of gas.
890 - same - no pegs, rail, mirrors and full of gas.

790 was 408.4lbs
890 is 401.2lbs

7.2lbs lighter

I have a slip on exhaust on order which drops 3lbs or so, sooooo she'll be a sub-400lb machine soon!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
16 Posts
@YoungLion you give very clear valuable info. Like CR I am going to be checking into that 15W oil, but I wonder if it’s 10 or 7.5 in there already. To me compared to 790 steering felt more stout. Can I steal that pic of “flour method”. Want to share in our small 890 group in FB, most likely all of them are members here as well. Still just to keep it documented /do join us if your on fb Log into Facebook | Facebook
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
121 Posts
Great post!! I'll second the power difference from the 790 to the 890.. It's HUUUUGE..
I'm guessing 1500 miles max on the Cup
 

·
Super-Moderator
'20 890R
Joined
·
443 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
@YoungLion you give very clear valuable info. Like CR I am going to be checking into that 15W oil, but I wonder if it’s 10 or 7.5 in there already. To me compared to 790 steering felt more stout. Can I steal that pic of “flour method”. Want to share in our small 890 group in FB, most likely all of them are members here as well. Still just to keep it documented /do join us if your on fb Log into Facebook | Facebook
Thank you - appreciate you saying so!

I'm not on FB but my wife is so I had her send in a join request - her first name is Janet in case you're the admin.

I post under her account in a local motorcycle riding group on FB as well.
 
1 - 20 of 54 Posts
Top