Rade Garage Fuel Tank – Alternate Install

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Over the last week or so I have been getting my bike ready for Hellas Rally, which has included installing the Rade Garage fairing and auxiliary fuel tank.  One of the reasons I went for the tank now, where I have been reluctant in the past, was that I’ve seen discussions about a vastly simpler way to plumb in the tank compared to the “official” instructions from Rade.  As there has been some interest in this method amongst the community I thought it worth writing it up here.

Buy the KTM petcock, part number 58507003200, pictured below and two M6 bolts, 12mm long.  Go for a ride and empty the tank as far as you dare, ride to reserve and then another 40km.  I didn’t and wish I had; I got fuel everywhere!  Remove the rear plastics – this requires you to remove a few bolts and an exceedingly awkward clip on the right hand side of the bike.  The fuel filler cap (if stock) has to come out as well.  Remove the long bolt that mounts the bottom of the fuel tank to the frame – it runs through the lower exhaust mounting.  Lift your tank up, being careful not to yank any cables / fuel lines and fix it there.  I fixed mine to the handlebars with a ratchet strap.  If you need more detailed guidance on this process check out Perun Moto’s instructions for the sub-frame re-enforcement kit, the guide is for the 690 but isn’t substansively different on the 701.  You’re going as far as step 7, but I would recommend buying his kit and doing that job at the same time.

Once you have space (I recommend removing the mudguard, makes life a lot easier) put a tray in from the right hand side of the bike to catch any fuel and loosen the bolts, marked below in red, that hold the fuel pump wiring in place enough to let any fuel run slowly out.  Give the bike a wiggle, stand it fully upright, get as much fuel out as you can.  Now it’s drilling time.

Use an 8mm wood/plastic drill bit and line it up at the drill point, marked below in red.  Don’t be too scared, it’s marked with a circle and even has a little indent so you can feel that you have the bit in the right place.  If you drill in the wrong place and have to buy a new tank you deserve it, frankly.  Please comment below if you do that!

At this point I have to stress – be bloody careful.  There may still be fuel in there – there was for me.  You’ll be lying on your back drilling up into a fuel tank.  If it comes out the wrong way it could get in your eyes.  Hospital visit.  No chomping cigars while doing this.  Definite hospital visit.  Be aware that even a little electric drill generates sparks in it’s electric motor.  Yep, that’s a hospital visit too.  Ideally you should use a hand drill, but I didn’t have one, so I ran my little battery drill slowly, drilled carefully and covered it with a plastic “shield” with a hole in it.  I’m not in hospital, so it worked.

Installing the petcock is fairly obvious, but don’t forget the O ring which comes in the box.  I also used a little blue thread locker, even though it’s not recommended on anything which screws into the tank.  My thinking here was that I’d rather ruin the tank when removing the petcock than have it vibrate itself loose and trigger an explosion.  Priorities.  I have since been told that normal metal thread locker can damage plastic, so be warned – if you use it just use a little and just get it on the metal receiver thread.  Point the petcock to the right side of the bike, see photo above, there’s no room if you point it at the exhaust – plus that thing gets supremely hot.  I would recommend fitting the fuel line to the petcock, with clip, prior to installing it to the tank – it’s a small space and I can’t imagine fitting the line and clip would be easy in that small a gap.

At this point I recommend putting a few litres of fuel in the Rade tank with the petcock closed, just to check for leaks at the petcock or the wiring panel.  I put the words “petcock closed” in bold for a good reason.  Tim left it open.  Tim got fuel all over the garage floor.  Don’t be like Tim.  Yes, you are reading a guide to performing a life threatening procedure written by a moron.  You get what you pay for.

Now all you have to do is run the fuel pipe up to the tank and plumb it in however takes your fancy.  That’s all covered in the Rade instructions.  The only issue I had was that initially fuel did not flow; I blew in the filler for the Rade tank and cleared the air-lock in the pipe and the problem was solved.  Personally I routed mine outside of the frame as, once the parts arrive, I will be fitting an in-line petcock and a quick disconnect to the exposed piece of pipe.  The reason for the petcock is so I can use the Rade tank as a reserve, so under normal conditions I’ll never have to re-fill it – the filler will be under my tank bag and that’s a hassle I can do without.  The reason for the quick disconnect is that if I need to steal fuel from the Rade tank, for example for cooking or for a stranded riding buddy, I can pull the quick connect and open the petcock.

Edit – 31/3/18 I was installing the petcock and noticed that the fuel line was partially trapped by the white plastic at the rear of the bike.  I just bent the plastic away from the tank a little and cut it with a knife, to free up a little space.  The edges of those plastic shrouds are sharp and with the vibration of the bike I am pretty sure they’d have shredded the fuel line eventually.

Update 24/1/20 – I’m rebuilding the engine at the moment and will be re-routing the fuel line again.  Not sure where yet.

I hope this helps anyone who wants to do this method for installing the tank, if anyone has any questions please feel free to ask.  Special thanks to Jens A Marcussen who kindly allowed me to use his photos from Facebook, my cameras are all either away or broken so I couldn’t take any.  Jens removed his tank from the bike completely, so was able to get much better angles than I would have done.

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