I’ve been meaning to do a quick update on the Konker KSM200 for a while, since I did manage to get a couple of last rides on it before the weather turned to pooh and it had to be locked away at the back of the garage.
Perhaps the most important update is on the banshee-like shriek that Zac discovered the clutch emitting (read his wrap up here).
“The clutch has developed a nasty, horrid shriek if you feather it while revving the engine. What the problem is, I’m not sure, and it’s easy to avoid by watching the clutch carefully,” he wrote.
He went on to say “It doesn’t seem to affect the clutch’s performance – the bike still shifts just fine. Maybe you could attribute the noise to poor clutch technique on my part, but I’ve had a lot of bikes, and I didn’t ride the Konker any different than the others.”
Well, for a while I couldn’t get Konker to replicate the shriek at all, then while trying to get the Konker out of a bog it happened. It produced a nasty high-frequency rattle … until I moved my right leg and it went away. Huh?
Turns out that if you have to put your right foot down — like when you get stuck in a bog (which is also normally a time that you feather the clutch) — it’s also very easy push slightly against the kick starter.
If you’ve ever ridden a kick-start bike then you’ll likely recognise the startling sound it makes when you start to depress the lever with the motor running. Anyway, mystery solved and after 3,137 km the Konker remains sans issue.
Despite getting the Konker back into my possesion late in the season, I did manage to take it through some pretty rough trails. I was somewhat weary about doing this, as the suspension is a little dubious, but contrary to what Zac concluded, I found the rear to be set up a little heavy on the preload – backing it off a few turns saw me launching the Konker over rut and rock with gay abandon.
Oh yes, and since it’s only a 200 cc bike, I rode over the obstacles at full throttle to boot. What a blast, and what a pig it makes my aging KLR to be. I’m very much looking forward to putting on some serious knobbies and seeing what she can do in the spring!
I still have to get a better set of mirrors for it and I’d like to fit a better headlight as the standard one is truly crap. Oh and I gave up with the rear rack that Zac scored, as the mounts are just too far off to make it something other than a royal pain in the arse job.
Other than that I’m really impressed with the bike. I’ll be sure to add any more updates when I pull it out of storage and put it through more shit.