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#1468486 - 05/18/09 10:16 AM Rotella synthetic in a KTM offroad MC?
EXC400rider Offline


Registered: 05/17/09
Posts: 6
Loc: Canada.
After doing some reading it looks as though the Rotella may be safe to use in my bike. (06 KTM 400EXC). I haven't seen alot about this oil written for use in offroad bikes, and am not sure if it makes a difference compared to other bikes or not.

The bike has a wet clutch, and does require JASO MA. The manual calls for 10w/50, full synthetic to be changed every 10 hours.

The bike has only ever had Amsoil full Syn. up to now. In the past I was paying $12/ quart. This year I have only seen it for $20 / quart, but with a red cap instead of blue. All labelling and description packaging is identical from before, but $8 more. (same oil as far as I can tell....)

I would like to switch over to rotella, or something else comparable, but want peace of mind as well. I would rather pay more for oil, (if I must), and be safe. Expensive oil is still cheaper than metal.

Even though I am not competitively racing, I want to use a quality oil, to get the most length of time possible out of the engine between rebuilds.

How is this going to work in an offroad MC? (same as any other?)

If you don't believe this is safe to use, why not?


looking forward to the recommendations....

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#1468555 - 05/18/09 11:23 AM Re: Rotella synthetic in a KTM offroad MC? [Re: EXC400rider]
coffee Offline


Registered: 03/11/07
Posts: 1116
Loc: Chandler, Arizona, USA
Well, either the 15w40 dino or the 5w40 syn will work fine for you. Most here will recommend the 15w40 overall but you will need to make the final decision. I went with the 5w40 for my Vulcan as I like the syn properties.
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1994 Volvo 945
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#1468616 - 05/18/09 12:20 PM Re: Rotella synthetic in a KTM offroad MC? [Re: coffee]
heavyhitter Offline


Registered: 07/22/07
Posts: 674
Loc: Nebraska
II would suggest the dino 15w40 because it shears less and you should be changing your oil often. All my dirtbikes have been 2strokes but I have used Rotella in my ATV's.

A VERY fast nationally ranked GNCC racer that lives in my neighborhood uses it in it CRF. He is fast as [censored] and had a great bike, that is a good enough endorsement for me.

Rotella T 15w40 DOES meet JASO MA standards.
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#1468650 - 05/18/09 12:50 PM Re: Rotella synthetic in a KTM offroad MC? [Re: heavyhitter]
ccdhowell Offline


Registered: 12/30/05
Posts: 831
Loc: Shreveport, Louisiana
I wouldn't be so fast to put it in my KTM if I were you. All the KTM engines spec 50 or 60wt oil, they must have a reason for that. I race against several 450 and 510 XC quads and they all gripe about the cost of the oil, but continue to use it with predicably excellent results. I believe the engine is designed to run best on the heavy oil. I might be inclined to try something like Mobil One V-Twin 20w50, but wouldn't go thinner in that engine.
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#1468651 - 05/18/09 12:50 PM Re: Rotella synthetic in a KTM offroad MC? [Re: heavyhitter]
EXC400rider Offline


Registered: 05/17/09
Posts: 6
Loc: Canada.
Thanks guys...

Is there another HDEO syn out there that has better shear properties? I would really like to stick to the synthetic if I can... or is the difference not really that big.... I am changing oil every 10 hrs.

What about the difference overall between dino and syn? I like the idea of staying with the synthetic, but would be willing to switch If I could see that there isn't a realistic difference otherwise.... I really don't understand all the technical stats, or else I would read the reports myself...

Thanks again

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#1468658 - 05/18/09 12:57 PM Re: Rotella synthetic in a KTM offroad MC? [Re: ccdhowell]
EXC400rider Offline


Registered: 05/17/09
Posts: 6
Loc: Canada.
 Originally Posted By: ccdhowell
I wouldn't be so fast to put it in my KTM if I were you. All the KTM engines spec 50 or 60wt oil, they must have a reason for that. I race against several 450 and 510 XC quads and they all gripe about the cost of the oil, but continue to use it with predicably excellent results. I believe the engine is designed to run best on the heavy oil. I might be inclined to try something like Mobil One V-Twin 20w50, but wouldn't go thinner in that engine.



Thanks ccd,

Manual calls for 10w/50 for anything above freezing, 5w40 for below.

Doesn't Rotella have something in the range of 10w50?


Edited by EXC400rider (05/18/09 12:58 PM)

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#1468729 - 05/18/09 02:04 PM Re: Rotella synthetic in a KTM offroad MC? [Re: EXC400rider]
coffee Offline


Registered: 03/11/07
Posts: 1116
Loc: Chandler, Arizona, USA
I am only aware of the 15w40 and 5w40 but I still think the 5w40 would be adequate for you and even the 15w40 if you choose other than syn. They are great oils.
_________________________
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1994 Volvo 945
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#1468840 - 05/18/09 03:27 PM Re: Rotella synthetic in a KTM offroad MC? [Re: coffee]
daman Offline


Registered: 09/23/06
Posts: 10486
Loc: Bad Axe, MI
Use Mobil One V-Twin 20w50 and don't look back...
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#1471244 - 05/20/09 04:42 PM Re: Rotella synthetic in a KTM offroad MC? [Re: daman]
boraticus Offline


Registered: 04/19/09
Posts: 2537
Loc: Canada
I looked at KTM machines when shopping for an adventure bike. They are top notch machines and very alluring until one looks closely at maintenance. Everything about the KTM is expensive. Now, it's not that I don't have the money. Not at all. I looked at how complicated the KTM is just to do an oil change. How many oil filters on your KTM? The one I was looking at had three. To access all of the filters, there was approx. 1-1/2 hrs. of tear down just to get at them. Lot of body parts had to be removed. If I recall correctly, the shop had a flat rate of 4 hours to do an oil change on the machine (Adventure V twin).

After the maintenance shock, I looked across the shop floor at the humble, dated, non-too-cute Kawasaki KLR650. It's price tag was seven or eight grand less and an oil change takes ten minutes.

Sure it's not the sophisticated machine that a KTM is but I'll tell you what. The many, many thousands of trouble free miles on everything from turkey trails to highways in relative comfort and absolute reliability have garnered my respect for the old KLR. I've gone through several sets of tires and many gallons of Rotella T 15W40. Bike still runs like the day I bought it. It's like an old cooperative mule. Never balks. Just keeps on keeping on.

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#1474103 - 05/22/09 11:42 PM Re: Rotella synthetic in a KTM offroad MC? [Re: boraticus]
wileyE Offline


Registered: 11/18/04
Posts: 1967
Loc: Kitsap, WA
if your riding paris to dakar or on the highway, wfo in the hot desert sun. Then heed their 50-60w advice. If your just riding trails the 40w would be fine IMO. Know a bunch of guys that have been using 15w40 rotella for years in their orange bikes, main reason is they run rekluse clutches, and that's what they recommend.

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#2212218 - 03/25/11 11:57 PM Re: Rotella synthetic in a KTM offroad MC? [Re: EXC400rider]
Gskii Offline


Registered: 03/25/11
Posts: 1
Loc: Utah
I don't mean to dig up a two year old thread but I have been having this same issue. I want to run a 50 grade oil in my ktm since I ride sand dunes full throttle in hot utah weather. But... I don't want to pay $12/quart for 10w50... or $19/qt for the motorex they recommend.

After a lot of research (this forum and KTMTalk forums) I decided to try Mobil 1 15w-50 full synthetic. It is a car oil but apparently has a lot of zddp for protection and a lot of KTMTalkers have been using it in their KTMs for a long time with no problems.

My only concern was if it would be ok for the wet clutch. Apparently it has been fine for a lot of people.

I tried it for the first time today when I changed my oil,,, Haven't ridden it yet so I can't comment on how it works.

This was the cheapest 50 grade synthetic oil I could find anywhere. I got it (on sale) for 19 bucks/5qt at walmart (normally about $23/5qt).

I'm hoping my wet clutch likes it so I don't have to go back to more expensive oil.

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#2212245 - 03/26/11 12:27 AM Re: Rotella synthetic in a KTM offroad MC? [Re: EXC400rider]
RC46_Rider Offline


Registered: 10/01/08
Posts: 85
Loc: Eastern Kansas

You must be honest with YOURSELF !! If you don't push the bike hard, or run in hot weather, then it is very likely the HDEO's in 15W-40 will work just fine. These are GOOD oils; no question. If you fry a 15W-40 HDEO, you are in full race mode or live in southern Arizona!

If heat is an issue, probably one of the very toughest and most heat resistant oils out there is the Mobil 1 20W-50 "V Twin" oil. It is designed for H-D's and the rear cylinder on those air cooled motors can get very hot. A 20W-50 will be FINE unless your ride in temperatures under 40 degrees F.

Bottomline: If you are concerned about oil being too "thin" with a 15W-40, then use a synthetic 20W-50. "it ain't complicated".....

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#2218900 - 04/01/11 03:26 PM Re: Rotella synthetic in a KTM offroad MC? [Re: EXC400rider]
fast4d Offline


Registered: 04/23/03
Posts: 39
Loc: LA, CA
I follow the factory intervals for oil/filter change (4600 miles) so I just use the 10w-50 they recommend. I have 32k on my superduke 990 now.

castrol rs4 10w-50 can be had for about $12.

total/elf makes a 10w-50 motorcycle oil that I was able to buy for $8 per liter but no one has it in stock anymore.

if you ride 'hard' and in hot weather go for the 15-50.

I've used the red (also gold) cap mobil one 15w-50 on a duke II. no clutch issues.

as for the KTM adventure there's one replacable filter. the other two are oil screens you just clean and replace. price of having a dry sump and multiple oil pumps. as for paying the dealer to service my bikes? if you care enough to read this forum why wouldn't you change it yourself?


Edited by fast4d (04/01/11 03:28 PM)

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#2218977 - 04/01/11 04:31 PM Re: Rotella synthetic in a KTM offroad MC? [Re: EXC400rider]
metroplex Offline


Registered: 09/12/02
Posts: 1904
Loc: SE MI
Check to make sure it actually recommends a xW-50 oil.

My Ducati's owner manual says 15W-50, but a Ducati Tech sheet showed that all Ducati's (liquid or oil-cooled) are specified to use Shell Advance Ultra 4 in 10W-40! I plan to run Rotella T6 5W-40 in my air cooled Ducati 696.

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