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sirthumpalot

KTM 520 vs 426 question

96 posts in this topic

All,

I just got back from the local races and was disappointed to not see a single YZ-F in the group anywhere, especially since I usually see 2 or 3 there during practice when I ride. I did see 3 or 4 KTM 520's. The riders appeared to be in the top group for their classes and usually were first or second for the holeshot. I love to see the 4-strokes pull away from the 250 2-strokes exiting corners (it was a muddy day).

This brings me to a question. Has anyone raced both a 520 and a YZ 426 who can give us a quick comparison? I'm more than happy with my YZ, I just didn't realize that the KTM was so competitive and I'm curious to know how it compares to the YZ.

Thanks!

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Sirthumpalot,

I have ridden a 01' KTM 520SX a few times and it is an awesome bike! This particular bike that I have ridden isnt stock and makes 60HP at the rear wheel.

Is the 520 faster than a 426? Yes (of course it should be since it is almost 100cc's larger)

Is the 520 lighter than the 426? Yes, but it isnt as noticable as one would like to think!

Does it have the hit like the YZ? No...sorry the 520 is the smoothest bike you will ever ride (real automobile like). The hit of the YZ just isnt there.

I for one would ride my 01' 426 over a 520 anyday. But that is just my style, I know others who hate the YZ but love the 520. I like to be able to take the inside lines and ride aggressively, and the YZ is capable of that. The KTM you must flow with the outside line, because it just doesnt have the grunt to hang w/250 2 strokes out of a tight inside line. The stock triple clamps on the 520 make it hard to "stick" in a tight line. But a buddy of mine has the 18mm offset clamps which make it corner better than my 426.

All in all it really depends on your style of riding. Go find a 520 and test ride it they are nice bikes but I prefer the YZ! Im sure others will disagree w/what I said but it is just my opinion. Hope this helps

Garrett

------------------

I get my kicks on a 426!

Motoman393's MX Site

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Garrett,

Hey I agree with you 100%.

I do have a couple of questions:

1) How does a 16 yr old afford such a trick 426?

2) What mods have you done and in what way did they help?

btw cool web page, keep up the good work.

G-Man

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I’ve ridden three of the thumper KTMs and IMO those orange bikes handle funny. They headshake at speed and take some forethought to corner. So they don’t like to turn, and don’t like going straight either.

Reduced offset clamps are popular for the orange bikes for this reason, the front end feels too light and too far out in front.

I have not ridden an SX in a while, but the EXC I’ve ridden has ridiculously soft suspension, particularly the forks. One impression I do recall from the 520 SX is what idiot sells a four speed dirt bike anymore? One, just one more gear, is all I want. Nooooooo, you can have too few (SX) or too many (E&M-XC), but they don’t make them just right :)

All kidding aside, they are light, fast but friendly (faster than a YZF but not by a whole lot), probably sprung too soft for moto and they do handle funny, but I suppose one could get used to that.

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Ditto on Motoman's and Hick's impressions.

The SX fork springs are soft too.

Also, the motor has alot more engine braking than a YZ and is too quiet to hear at low rpm's in a pack of bikes.

I guess you can get used anything and with a little tweaking they can be fantastic mounts.

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Hick,

The 520 sx is ment for Supercross. Tell me how many sx racers start off in first? Didn't think so.

The other gear it is missing is 6th. So it has a 5th like the YZF, it is just called 4th.

So in response to your question of "What idiot sell a four speed dirt bike anymore?" A bloody smart idiot.

If you want more gears, buy a m/xc.

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Originally posted by Dirk Diggler:

Hick,

The 520 sx is ment for Supercross. Tell me how many sx racers start off in first? Didn't think so.

The other gear it is missing is 6th. So it has a 5th like the YZF, it is just called 4th.

So in response to your question of "What idiot sell a four speed dirt bike anymore?" A bloody smart idiot.

If you want more gears, buy a m/xc.

The first four gears on the SX are the same ratios as the MXC. So it does not have fifth, like a YZ, fourth on the SX is under driven, fifth on my YZ is a bit over. Fourth on my YZ is actually taller than fourth on the SX (although so is first).

IMO the SX is short one gear, but not having a track in my area I guess I can’t believe that anybody buys a bike and then never takes it off the track. For the average rider the extra gear is a great deal, less than a pound of extra weight, and you can then add a big tank and take the thing off road or on the trails.

True, they have other models for that, but what if I don’t want the extra weight of the battery, lighting coil, and starter (not to mention the couch-like suspension)?

But I can always find something to complain about.

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not to knock the bike but ktm's are just too expensive and wait till you see the price of a top end rebuild with that.i had an 96' 520

and was very dissapointing,that was a two stroker but it wouldnt hang with a 426 on its best day.bottom line...too expensive both the bike and the parts.

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SirThump

All the other replies are fine but they forgot one important thing,,,It is becoming trendy to ride a KTM thumper on the track now that Dowd is on one :-)

Doug

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<font color="navy">My Dad has the KTM 520 EXC. It's a great bike, the motor is awesome. Very smooth. Top speed is WICKED FAST with that 6th gear. It won't rev as high as the 426 so you do have to shift a bit more (the SX is probably the opposite).

Suspension is top notch White Power equipment with NO LINKAGE. The shock can be pulled off without removing the subframe or anything. Remove the top and bottom nuts and the shock slides out.

Ergonomics are very roomy. The handlebar mounts can be adjusted to fit anyone's needs. The seat is too hard. You get some monkey butt after a while of riding.

The only thing I have to say bad about the 520 is the front end. It feels REALLY light; too light. The bars jerk around a lot in rough choppy woops. Much more than the 426. To solve this problem, my Dad JUST put on a Scott's steering stabilizer. It handle's great now. In the deep sand, my Dad's 520 still doesn't feel as stable as my 426 but in the hard pack his 520 feels more stable than the 426.

The KTM 520 is a great package. It comes stock with the most trick stuff. KTM really thought out this bike well. You have to have a dealer that knows the bikes well show you the bike. You truly will respect how well the 520 is put together. Attention to detail is top notch, better than the 426 in many aspects.

What you have to do is ride one. Then determine if it suits your style better. They're two different bikes with two different personalities.

------------------

~YaMaHaYzFoUrTwOsIx~

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I'VE ALWAYS LET THE ISSUE OF PRICE AND DEMAND SOLVE MY DILEMA'S. SOME IMPORTANT FACTS, DID YOU SEE RED BUD AND BUD'S CREEK NATIONAL. KTM 520 TOOK THE HOLESHOT BOTH MOTO'S.

HOW ABOUT LANGSTON IN THE 125'S ABROAD A KTM. 4 MOTO'S FOUR VICTORIES!!!

KTM IS SOON BECOMING A SERIOUS MOTO X CONTENDER.

THE KTM THRIVES IN BOTTOM END TORQUE. THE COLOR ORANGE WILL GET TO THE TOP OF GLEN HALEN FIRST EVERY TIME!! IF YOU CAN RIDE A 4 STROKE IN MID RANGE, OH BOY. BYE, BYE, YZ. IF YOU LIKE TO CUT AND SLICE LIKE YOU DID ON A 2 STROKE AND REV THE BIKE TO THE STARS, WELL THE YZ IS FOR YOU!!

Originally posted by sirthumpalot:

All,

I just got back from the local races and was disappointed to not see a single YZ-F in the group anywhere, especially since I usually see 2 or 3 there during practice when I ride. I did see 3 or 4 KTM 520's. The riders appeared to be in the top group for their classes and usually were first or second for the holeshot. I love to see the 4-strokes pull away from the 250 2-strokes exiting corners (it was a muddy day).

This brings me to a question. Has anyone raced both a 520 and a YZ 426 who can give us a quick comparison? I'm more than happy with my YZ, I just didn't realize that the KTM was so competitive and I'm curious to know how it compares to the YZ.

Thanks!

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G-Man,

1) Trick? my bike...I wish LOL! The reason I can afford my bike is: I build computers and web pages (which is great money for a kid my age, I make around $200-$250 for each computer I build and it takes 3hrs!). I also have a job contract painting which I make $10 an hour (tax free). I have to pay for 1/2 of my bikes cost ($3200) and all the mods, gas, oil, repairs, etc, etc that I do to the bike! This is why I have learned to do ALL of my own maintaince (since taking it to a mechanic is very expensive.)

2) The mods I have are: WB R4 pipe (I wouldn't ride w/o it...I just put it in 3rd gear and chug or rev.), WB high boy header, EK520MVX chain, steel sunstar sprockets, black gripper ceet cover, Blue Applied triple clamp, tag bars (CR high), and I have Mobil 1 ATF in the forks! And thats it...if that is "Trick" then I'm sure some of yalls bike seem like they are "factory" compared to mine LOL!

BTW, Let me know if you guys have any pics that you would like on my web page!

Thanks,

Garrett

------------------

I get my kicks on a 426!

Motoman393's MX Site

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Hi! I dance between this page and the KTM 520 page, since I own a 520, and my dad a 426.

After riding my dads 426, I will say there is no doubt the 426 will out turn the 520 in a tight area at any speed. But the 520 will out "sweep turn" the 426 any day. The low end of the 426 is a bit snappier, but as soon as the 520 gets anywhere in the revs, say bye bye. I whole heartedly agree the front end of the KTM is way soft. I currently am running 15wt oil, 3 compression clickers from stiff - and she's still too soft. (7.5 wt is stock I am told). I think I'm gonna have to break down and just buy some stiffer springs....

I notice a little headshake at some bumpy speed, but I've got my forks slid up in the triple clamps as far as is possible - I've just attributed it to that. I personally have not found it any worse than my 95 KX250. I've had the rear end dance half way to the stops or more already through the whoops, but the front seems to stay tracktable and planted even while the rear is taking up three lines at once!

Overall, I think I am more impressed with the 520 (why i bought the KTM instead of the 426..after my dad bought it!) It's a light feeling bike that you seem to be able to move on and do what you want with. The 426 struck me as heavy and immovable.

Trick bikes? My 520 SX is bone stock!! (well, other than the bark busters and the 15 wt oil!)

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well gentlemen, I cant sit here and take it anymore I'll have to stand up and take some action into my own hands........

just a few questions to start!

does the yzf come with an o-ring chain?

can you clean the air filter without tools?

what kind of handlebars come on the yzf?

my ktm has taper bars.

does your yzf come stock with a titanium pipe?

mine has two!

how do you start your bike? my bike has a kick start and an electric start.

what kind of clutch cable will never fade(I'll give you a hint, it has oil in it)

what are those arcaic things hanging from your rear shock?, my bike doesnt require them.

how many welds on your swing arm? not one on mine.

can your rear axle be flipped around for better adjustment or do you have to remove the chain and cut it down?

believe me when I say this gentlemen, im not knocking the yamahard to start but I do honestly feel the ktm is far superior and thats why I own two!!!!!

2000 exc 400 rfs

2000 exc 200

[This message has been edited by captain ktm (edited 07-17-2001).]

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I love that yamahard to start part :)

Originally posted by captain ktm:

believe me when I say this gentlemen, im not knocking the yamahard to start

------------------

Pretend it's flat and give it the gas.

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Captain, no way does the 520 have Ti pipes factory?!! I won't believe it....that would be too cool. I bought my SX because it was awesome, but I never realized it was quite so cool. KTM does have an 'out of the box" quality edge over EVERY bike....thats for sure.

...and I LOVE being able to just "whip it out" give a swift kick....and hear the engine thunder....without hassle!! The only time I have EVER had a problem starting, hot cold, holding throttle open or ANYTIME....was when I ran out of fuel, and didn't realize it! :)

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Hey Captain,

You get what you pay for. At least I sure hope so in your case, because $1,400 will buy lots of chains, bars and pipes.

The ‘Berg has Ti head pipes, but not the KTM. Well, maybe they do, but if so that’s news to me.

And the final joke is on you, do you really NEED an e-start on that 400? No lie, I can start my buddy’s 400 EXC with MY HAND. Must be nice having that extra 14 pounds of ballast though...

:)

Sorry for el fuego bud, but this IS the YZ side, and bang for your buck is where the KTM cannot beat it. No how, no way.

I bet that 200 is sweet, though.

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Hey Cap, Air Filter with no tools, You dont even want to start with maintainence do you, You must have oil between you fingers every Sunday night from all those oil changes, the 520 is great though!!!!

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ok,ok,ok I thought I could get away with the ti pipe thing but you yz boys are smarter than what I thought. And as far as the e button goes, you are right there as well, but I have another question?

can you start your yamahog with your hand?

It seems though you forgot about the e button and hydro clutch there hick how many of those could you buy for 1400$. and with the oil changes ktm issued a statement that owners are changing oil way too often,

my buddy thumper darryl got his filters analyzed after a huge amount of riding and not a speck of metal in them filters. I change mine after every 100 litres of fuel.

I was also gonna mention if I had a nickel every time I looked at a yzf guy starting his bike I'd have a million bucks!(thats like three bucks American!).

Now all joking aside guys I do like the yzf whatever ya call it, but is it race ready out of the box,honestly?

whats the hot start button for(cool color of red!)

The list above in the post is just a small one, I can go on for days about the bike just like you guys about yours but one of these days you will all realize that ktm is here to stay and that the pumpkins are winning races.

good day eh!

[This message has been edited by captain ktm (edited 07-18-2001).]

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I can not take this anymore. I have not seen one 520sx win a sanctioned AMA race here in Ga. I have seen plenty of 426's, a Husky 5/610 and a couple of 520's top 5. Most races are won by either 2 strokes or 426's here in my region. I like my 426. It is easy to start, hard to stall, easy & CHEAP to maintain, and as fast as I ever will go. It also handles/turns better than the 520SX & has good stock suspension, that can be modified that no 520sx will ever come close to. If I ever swap a 2001 426 or 2002 426, it won't ever be for a KTM, It will be for a CRF450. KTM's have the worst suspension, worst fork seals, worst frame/steering geometry, worst oil filter /maintenance procedure, worst parts supply, worst cost for repair & parts......I can keep going on, but as you can see, there is no point. The only good to a 520sx, the weight & button. This is not worth the cost of around 7K to me or the reoccurring cost of ownership to this bike. To each his own.

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