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Old 3rd June 2014, 13:23   #1
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Default KTM recalling 390s (pre-March 2014) for Free front sprocket change

KTM has detected a problem with the front sprocket of the 390 Duke which could potentially cause the chain to come off loose. The Austrian manufacturer is addressing this problem by replacing the sprockets on 390 Dukes manufactured till March 2014 free of charge all over the world.

According to KTM, the front sprocket can become misaligned, causing the chain to come off the teeth. Although there hasn’t been any reported incidents so far, this is quite a serious issue as the chain coming off the sprocket teeth can potentially lead to rear wheel lock-up, and maybe the inevitable skid. KTM has already adressed this issue in production, so bikes made after march 2014 should be safe from this glitch.

KTM has made no official announcements on this, and insists that this is not a recall, with a spokesman stating to Visordown, “Within the EU we use the term TI or technical information. This basically means it’s an issue we are aware of and something that is carried out when the bike is next taken into a dealer, at no cost to the customer. Only safety related issues are subject to a recall and in those instances it is the manufacturer’s responsibility to contact all affected customers.” The company’s Malaysian arm however asked its customers to check if their “sprocket plate doesn’t have any of its indentations lining up with the shaft pieces. They should be opposite to stop the plate sliding off,” according to the Duke 390 forum.


Source: http://www.motoroids.com/news/ktm-replacing-390-duke-front-sprocket-free

Nice to see KTM not basking in the glory of their success but ensuring that their customers get the best bang for their buck!

Last edited by ashwin.terminat : 3rd June 2014 at 13:26.
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Old 3rd June 2014, 14:55   #2
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Default re: KTM recalling 390s (pre-March 2014) for Free front sprocket change

If I'm not mistaken, I did read somewhere, that a Duke owner faced the same issue where the sprocket came off and the rear wheel locked up, luckily he escaped without harm.
Let me try searching for that article.
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Old 3rd June 2014, 15:07   #3
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Default re: KTM recalling 390s (pre-March 2014) for Free front sprocket change

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Originally Posted by Ripper View Post
If I'm not mistaken, I did read somewhere, that a Duke owner faced the same issue where the sprocket came off and the rear wheel locked up, luckily he escaped without harm.
Let me try searching for that article.
Inder. Wanderlusters, Hyderabad. Another ex Bulleteer current KTMer.
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Old 3rd June 2014, 20:10   #4
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Default re: KTM recalling 390s (pre-March 2014) for Free front sprocket change

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Originally Posted by Ripper View Post
If I'm not mistaken, I did read somewhere, that a Duke owner faced the same issue where the sprocket came off and the rear wheel locked up, luckily he escaped without harm.
Let me try searching for that article.
Saqib of Kreigers, the Bangalore Dukers also reported this issue about 4 months ago. He too was a lucky guy to come out unhurt from the issue.
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Old 3rd June 2014, 20:47   #5
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Default re: KTM recalling 390s (pre-March 2014) for Free front sprocket change

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Saqib of Kreigers, the Bangalore Dukers also reported this issue about 4 months ago. He too was a lucky guy to come out unhurt from the issue.
Have seen this in an FB group a while ago.

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Old 5th June 2014, 10:13   #6
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Default Re: KTM recalling 390s (pre-March 2014) for Free front sprocket change

Curious to know if its acceptable to change just one sprocket alone - instead of the whole system.

Also, when its time for replacement, does anyone know if we can purchase the rear sprocket and chain as individual items?
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Old 5th June 2014, 10:52   #7
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Default Re: KTM recalling 390s (pre-March 2014) for Free front sprocket change

Recall and free should never be used in the same sentence my friend Guess everything comes at a cost! people were saying it will be the end of the road for Yamaha R15 when Duke 200 was launched, but KTM proved them wrong with below average quality product! I was interested in getting 390, but after reading about quality issues on different forums I decided to wait and get something better, even if it costs much more!
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Old 5th June 2014, 11:04   #8
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Default Re: KTM recalling 390s (pre-March 2014) for Free front sprocket change

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Recall and free should never be used in the same sentence my friend Guess everything comes at a cost! people were saying it will be the end of the road for Yamaha R15 when Duke 200 was launched, but KTM proved them wrong with below average quality product! I was interested in getting 390, but after reading about quality issues on different forums I decided to wait and get something better, even if it costs much more!
I guess the quality issues are a relative term here. If you are comparing it with Kawasaki or Yamaha, yes it does have a fair share of niggles.

But me as someone who started riding on a Royal Enfield is not at all bothered with some once in a while niggles! And I am not at all babying my bike and is totally satisfied with it.

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Old 5th June 2014, 11:12   #9
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Default Re: KTM recalling 390s (pre-March 2014) for Free front sprocket change

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Originally Posted by man_of_steel View Post
I guess the quality issues are a relative term here. If you are comparing it with Kawasaki or Yamaha, yes it does have a fair share of niggles.

But me as someone who started riding on a Royal Enfield is not at all bothered with some once in a while niggles! And I am not at all babying my bike and totally satisfied with it.
You will find the difference in quality between the Japanese bikes and KTM, RE is in a different league all together , but I must admit that no other bike can give better all round performance in that price range!
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Old 5th June 2014, 11:16   #10
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Default Re: KTM recalling 390s (pre-March 2014) for Free front sprocket change

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Originally Posted by giri1.8 View Post
but I must admit that no other bike can give better all round performance in that price range!
Exactly. And I find the quality more than acceptable for the price I paid. Except the alloy breaking issues to be honest!
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Old 5th June 2014, 12:10   #11
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Default Re: KTM recalling 390s (pre-March 2014) for Free front sprocket change

I don't know if anybody else on the forum received the call for change of sprocket, i received the call just this morning.

Surprisingly, i checked the front sprocket just last night after reading about the recall on the forum and found the the sprocket as it should be.
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Old 5th June 2014, 12:32   #12
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Default Re: KTM recalling 390s (pre-March 2014) for Free front sprocket change

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Originally Posted by man_of_steel View Post
Exactly. And I find the quality more than acceptable for the price I paid. Except the alloy breaking issues to be honest!
Agree on this totally. The alloys are the only unaddressed point by KTM to date frankly. Everything else has been looked at and solved, eventually. The alloys issue is a vendor and contract and supply thing. And the tyre is also part of the equation. Of that I am sure. Either way, its something that needs to be solved. And I remain confident that it will be. These are too good bikes to be hobbled by weak feet.
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Old 9th June 2014, 22:49   #13
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Default Re: KTM recalling 390s (pre-March 2014) for Free front sprocket change

Quite surprising to see owners and others seem to think it's OK for a performance bike to have (such) quality issues. Heck, we're not talking of a mudguard rattle or some moody electrics here and there. Those are what I'd call minor niggles. What happens if the rear wheel locks up when youre doing 100kph?

And neither is this a piddly 100cc commuter whose sole purpose is to run 1000kmpl and cost not more than 50k OTR (which is never going to cross 50 kph anyway).

If placing a reliable sprocket or alloys would have pushed up the price by 15 - 20ks, the target customers would have hardly cared - rather the attention would have been appreciated. To me this is sign of abyssmal quality control/greed that's downright criminal. I really wish KTM would go out of business for putting riders lives in danger.

But KTM is giving the junta exactly what they want - performance at a low price (with *acceptable* quality issues). So people will continue to buy and KTM will thrive. Sigh...

I do however appreciate KTM making the problem known and taking initiative to fix it - surely an improvement the MSIL style of declaring 'Indians dont know how to drive'. But in my mind, the damage is aready done - I'm not touching KTM with a 10 foot pole. Ever.

PS: I do not own a KTM or any performance motorbike

PPS: KTM owners & lovers, please think of what kind of danger you were exposed to all along and then think of your family - before you start badgering me
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Old 9th June 2014, 23:10   #14
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Default Re: KTM recalling 390s (pre-March 2014) for Free front sprocket change

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Originally Posted by isiv View Post
Quite surprising to see owners and others seem to think it's OK for a performance bike to have (such) quality issues.
Good points that you bring up there isiv. Maybe issues like this need to be given more thought. Safety must always be the most important thing on every manufacturer's mind. Cutting corners on safety issues such as this isn't justified in any way as you just said.

Another question I have is, the faulty sprockets were in the March 2014 batch and were in April. But why has news of these faulty sprockets come to light only in June? 2-3 months after they identified the fault?

Were they waiting for a few reports of failed front sprockets to come to the fore before they decided on a recall?
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Old 10th June 2014, 17:39   #15
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Default Re: KTM recalling 390s (pre-March 2014) for Free front sprocket change

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Originally Posted by ashwin.terminat View Post
Another question I have is, the faulty sprockets were in the March 2014 batch and were in April. But why has news of these faulty sprockets come to light only in June? 2-3 months after they identified the fault?

Were they waiting for a few reports of failed front sprockets to come to the fore before they decided on a recall?
Ashwin/isiv - the issue might have come to the notice after more than 1 bike had the same problem. some time would be required to do the root cause analysis and come out with a suitable solution.

By the way in which this issue has ben resolved, seems like it was a issue either w.r.t design(which has been changed in April due to different reasons) or due a faulty product from a particular vendor (who has been changed after march 2014 due to other reasons). it might have been found that the newer sprocket/lock plate is safe and working as per design while there a considerable probability that the earlier sprocket/lock plate might fail. Hence the recall/change. Please note that it quite possible that most of the dukes might not have any issue in this regard at all (like mine, it was perfectly alright).

I understood the design KTM has used for locking the sprocket on the shaft (i.e the lock plate design and the spline shaft design) while in the service centre for the change and found it to be simple and brilliant. We also have to note that this might be the std design of KTM to secure the sprocket in other bikes too. Also, these bikes were rigorously tested prior to launch and they didnt face this issue then. So, i feel its a bit harsh to badger KTM for this.

Slightly OT- while in the service centre for the change of sprocket, i found a front rim being changed for a 390 (due to an accident). Just out of curiosity, i was checking it , found no cracks (it had become a bit oval and rim was bent a bit) and also found the alloy to be quite heavy (quite heavier than pulsar DTSi alloy).

Last edited by D-nav : 10th June 2014 at 17:44. Reason: adding more info
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