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SoCalMule

07 KTM 450 exc Complete Engine Rebuild Recommendations

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 Hey guys, I am making a list of recommended updates and things to replace/check on my 07 KTM RFS 450 exc and would appreciate anyones ideas. My bike has 355 hours on the original internals. I going to complete a full engine overhaul. Here is some of the things I am planning to do:

Freshen the top end, piston, rings, machine the cylinder, work with the head; install stainless steel exhaust valves, replace the chain, the guide, I have heard some people recommend installing aftermarket guides... not too sure why on this. What aftermarket guides are recommended?

I'm going to replace the crank bearings and both connecting-rod end bearings. Are there better types of "crank bearings" then OEM? I remember someone saying use roller (ball) bearings vs needle bearings? I'm fuzzy on this. 

I'm going to replace the counter shaft bearings since they have over 9k miles on them, and there seems to be a little play. I figure since this is major surgery, that I should get an idea as to everyones experience so I don't miss anything. 

Thanks! Mark

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There are two well-known RFS rebuilders- CAFlash (a retired garage-guy) and Dave Hopkins (a retired garage-guy), plus several others. Not only are these guys capable of building motors from the ground up, I believe most will sell the parts you're seeking- and the best stuff. Kibblewhite valves, etc. I know CaFlash carried lots of spares- cranks, heads, etc. and I think Dave Hopkins does as well- he's a Kibblewhite dealer.

Personally, I'd box it up (a cheap igloo cooler is the traditional method) and send it to Hopkins. The amount I'd spend in labor to him is a drop in the bucket when compared to the fallout from a single mistake on a single tolerance that I'd undoubtedly make doing it myself. I'll always give it to the guy who's done it a hundred times rather than glowing in the possible satisfaction of doing it myself.

 

And- I have a rebuildable RFS crank/rod assembly should you need one.

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The last RFS motor that I had to do extensive work on, I got a cylinder/piston/gasket set from CA Flash (from KTM Talk forum I think?)  up in San Juan Capistrano.  I drove up there and got it, and he also cut the valve seats and got me a couple of stainless steel exhaust valves to replace the titanium ones that were on the engine.  

He's a good guy who's not too far away, and he has a bunch of parts.  Always good to have a somewhat local resource.

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Another for CA flash.  He has these RFS motors down to a science and can build you a reliable stock motor or some kind of fire breathing monster between the SX/XC/EXC variations with any transmission.  He did some head work for me and was reasonably priced, quick turn around, and a wealth of knowledge.  If you want all the small details worked out while your in there, he is the guy to talk to.  He was very helpful with my constant bothering a few years ago on my 07 450xc   

I think Hopkins is up north in Washington or Oregon, but I know just as many happy guys that worked with him too.

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  Does CA Flash have a Web presence?  Google search is not being successful.  Or is it just the telephone?

   Thanks,  B / G

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Just now, Bagstr said:

  Does CA Flash have a Web presence?  Google search is not being successful.  Or is it just the telephone?

   Thanks,  B / G

Nope. He's in a garage in San Juan Cap.

Great guy. But only RFS motors, I believe. If you contact him, tell him you were send by FakeName.

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    Thanx!     RFS, OK;  not my style.  Not ready for a rebuild, but building a support team for the future. Maybe I will hire you for the job B).  You have a garage, right?..

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On 2/22/2018 at 1:00 PM, paulmbowers said:

There are two well-known RFS rebuilders- CAFlash (a retired garage-guy) and Dave Hopkins (a retired garage-guy), plus several others. Not only are these guys capable of building motors from the ground up, I believe most will sell the parts you're seeking- and the best stuff. Kibblewhite valves, etc. I know CaFlash carried lots of spares- cranks, heads, etc. and I think Dave Hopkins does as well- he's a Kibblewhite dealer.

Personally, I'd box it up (a cheap igloo cooler is the traditional method) and send it to Hopkins. The amount I'd spend in labor to him is a drop in the bucket when compared to the fallout from a single mistake on a single tolerance that I'd undoubtedly make doing it myself. I'll always give it to the guy who's done it a hundred times rather than glowing in the possible satisfaction of doing it myself.

 

And- I have a rebuildable RFS crank/rod assembly should you need one.

Thanks Paul! Cheap Igloo Cooler (LMAO!)

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Along with the 2 mentioned above ...

Travis at thumper racing is very very good ! He is out of gardnerville Nevada near Carson city.

He is the pros pro on ktm talk , better than ca flash.. by far in my opinion. ...

dave Hopkins is good , but not as experienced as Travis at thumper racing.

Me,

I would certainly give my work to travis first, then Dave then ca flash.

travis does all RFS and up to current models, very knowledable indeed!,

By the way 

I ride a 450exc as well.

 

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I’m familiar with Travis from his KTMtalk posts, which is why I suggested Hopkins or CAflash. 

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9 hours ago, xr650rkyle said:

Along with the 2 mentioned above ...

Travis at thumper racing is very very good ! He is out of gardnerville Nevada near Carson city.

He is the pros pro on ktm talk , better than ca flash.. by far in my opinion. ...

dave Hopkins is good , but not as experienced as Travis at thumper racing.

Me,

I would certainly give my work to travis first, then Dave then ca flash.

travis does all RFS and up to current models, very knowledable indeed!,

By the way 

I ride a 450exc as well.

 

Thanks! I will check out Travis on KTM Talk. 

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2 hours ago, paulmbowers said:

I’m familiar with Travis from his KTMtalk posts, which is why I suggested Hopkins or CAflash. 

Thanks Paul.

  Hey, I  installed my new radio yesterday, only required one zip-tie on my helmet. Hope you have a nice Sunday! Mark 

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Hopkins did my 06 525. I definitely recommend him. Bike is still running great and I’ll probably keep it as my backup bike for as long as I’m riding.

 

CiD

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15 minutes ago, Covered in Dust said:

Hopkins did my 06 525. I definitely recommend him. Bike is still running great and I’ll probably keep it as my backup bike for as long as I’m riding.

 

CiD

Thanks Chris, where is Hopkins out of? We going riding near Kendal's next week? 

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27 minutes ago, SoCalMule said:

Thanks Chris, where is Hopkins out of? We going riding near Kendal's next week? 

Just found DJH Cycle Sport...

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1 hour ago, SoCalMule said:

Just found DJH Cycle Sport...

I think there is a ride on for Thursday, not sure if I’m going to make it.

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20 hours ago, Covered in Dust said:

I think there is a ride on for Thursday, not sure if I’m going to make it.

Hope that you do! Be nice to see you. 

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