Slartidbartfast's 1050 Tiger - Triumph Forum: Triumph Rat Motorcycle Forums
Tiger 1050 - Mods & Workshop Workshop and technical talk for the 1050 Tiger

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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old 11-25-2018, 07:20 PM Thread Starter
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Main Motorcycle: KTM 1290SA
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Location: Louisiana, USA
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Other Motorcycle: Triumph Tiger 1050 ABS
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Slartidbartfast's 1050 Tiger

Yes, I'm referring to myself in the third party. Seemed like a good title. I'll try to document my new bike here and will appreciate input from those with experience to share.

I did a fly-n-ride to New York a couple of weeks ago and rode 1400 miles home to Louisiana, staying just ahead of the winter storm. That was a minor adventure in itself.

This is my first Triumph motorcycle. On the journey home and some subsequent tinkering, I learned a few things:
  • Yes, the low beam SUCKS!!!!! It didn't help that it was adjusted to no more than 30 feet ahead;
  • No heated grips. Didn't think I'd miss them so much (even with bar muffs temporarily installed and heated glove liners in use.) I guess the NY-based previous owners (2) did not ride in the winter, which is good from a corrosion standpoint.
  • Loose steering bearings are in need some attention;
  • Surging front brake;
  • Rear brake was pathetic. I think the disk got sprayed with chain lube at some point;
  • I may have got an oil burner. It goes from the top of the dipstick to the bottom in about 500 miles.
  • Got pretty good fuel mileage - between 40 and 50 mpg (US) running at between 75 and 85 (indicated, 70 and 80 actual) most of the time in temps close to freezing.
So far, I've adjusted the lights but not ridden at night again to see how much improvement is still required. Based on what I've read here and what I've done to every other bike I've owned recently, an LED upgrade will be forthcoming. Getting LEDs that work with the existing lights and housing and which don't have failure-prone fans may be an interesting challenge. If anyone has gone this route before I'd love to hear about it -seems most people were worrying about this a few years ago when HID was the best upgrade.

The steering bearings don't seem to be damaged, merely in need of retightening. I found a 38mm socket for the top nut but need to make a tool to handle the castelated nuts underneath.

I scrubbed both brake disks thoroughly with a green Scothchbrite pad and sprayed liberally with brake cleaner. I also polished and applied copper anti-seize to pad retainer pins and cleaned/lubed the rear slider pins. After re-bedding-in, most of the surge has gone and both brakes are much stronger.

I was checking the oil with the dipstick resting in the top of the case threads. It seems this was wrong. Maybe the oil level was dropping because of overfilling. Time will tell I suppose.

In addition to the above work, I stripped the rear suspension linkage for cleaning and greasing after hearing a squeak. The bearings and bushings were all well lubed. It looks like the drop link is rubbing on the drag link, implying something is out of line. Will be checking if the Elka shock is properly aligned (any spacers either side of the top eye) as everything else seems to be in good condition and straight.

The dealership selling the bike said they knew nothing about it's service history. With 20K miles on the clock the second valve inspection is coming up but I have no idea whether the first was completed. Will call to ask for an email of the official Triumph service history but I don't expect that is necessarily all-inclusive. I tried to contact the PO but learned he passed away so that's a dead-end.
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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-04-2018, 07:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Slartidbartfast View Post
So far, I've adjusted the lights but not ridden at night again to see how much improvement is still required. Based on what I've read here and what I've done to every other bike I've owned recently, an LED upgrade will be forthcoming. Getting LEDs that work with the existing lights and housing and which don't have failure-prone fans may be an interesting challenge. If anyone has gone this route before I'd love to hear about it -seems most people were worrying about this a few years ago when HID was the best upgrade.
filling. Time will tell I suppose.
I've had my Tiger 1050 since August, and yes, its headlights are the worst of any motorcycle I've owned. I'd like to hear about any LED upgrade also; currently I'm leaning towards auxiliary fender-mounted LEDs.
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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-15-2018, 05:14 PM
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I had an 08 Tiger and I do miss it, but it was proving too tall and top heavy for me, even after lowering it! Yes, the lights are pathetic!! I re-wired mine so that both lights were on together and readjusted the high beam down, then fitted a couple of spots for high beam. I spent an awful lot of time tinkering with the mapping in an effort to get it running well with the stock exhaust, fitted a chain oiler, twin air horns, adjustable screen (another saga in itself) and one or two other bit and pieces.

I did a few trips on it (loaded with camping gear) and it was a great touring bike - except for the aforementioned height issue.
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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-23-2018, 07:58 PM Thread Starter
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Adjusting the headlamp beams higher made a big improvement but the low beam still has an extraordinarily odd spread of light that puts a bright patch close in front, rather than further down the road and to the sides, where it's needed. I'm going to experiment with some fanless LED upgrades but was hoping someone else who has done the same would share their experience first. Nobody has come forward so far.

Haven't looked closely at the suspension again but I did notice a washer on one side of the top shock mount. Even if it's on the wrong side, it doesn't seem like enough to cause the wear on the drag link. We'll see!

I ground up a 1-3/8" deep socket to make a tool for the steering bearing adjuster and lock nut (The top nut is 38mm or 1-1/2"). Upon disassembly, I found clean-looking taper-roller bearings with fresh grease so that was encouraging.

This evening, I finally got a look at the muffler stamp. Pleased to note it's a TOR exhaust. Seems like a bit of carbon build up around the exit and it pops a lot on deceleration so I'm wondering what tune is loaded. I have the appropriate ODB2 diagnostic connector. Once I get the TuneECU software loaded up, how can I tell what tune is already installed?
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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-24-2018, 10:07 AM Thread Starter
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I figured out the ID for tune maps. Mine had the basic factory map. Not the one that can damage pistons but not the correct one for the TOR exhaust either.

If I understand correctly, you can't load and view the map that was placed on the ECU when new, only those which have been uploaded since. If that is the case, the map on there was not the original so my bike MIGHT have had the "bad" tune originally. Still only an issue if the owner ran it with low octane fuel and nothing I can do about it now.

Downloaded the factory TOR map to the bike. Will see if that affects the abruptness/sensitivity just off zero throttle or the soot and popping on decel.
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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-03-2019, 11:24 AM Thread Starter
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Following the ECU tune update, I noted smoother throttle in the mid range and, surprisingly, the exhaust note seems a bit quieter as well as reduced popping on the overrun. I haven't put on enough miles to see if fuel economy is affected.

Yesterday I removed the factory pannier mounts and Ventura rack to install Givi luggage mounts. I can now use existing luggage for other bikes rather than acquiring panniers specially for this bike (I don't like the clamshell-style OE panniers anyway.)

The next task will be sorting out aux lighting and other electrical accessories. I have heated grips on order (not Triumph) and will be installing a voltmeter/temp gauge as well as power for phone/gps and aux lighting. Also, I came across some slim, fanless H7 LEDs that I intend to try in the headlamps - will have to play with lights once they are all installed to see whether I end up wiring both headlamps on full time with the aux lamps as high beam or some other arrangement. Finally, I have to fabricate a GPS mount to place a RAM ball or similar, above the instruments.

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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-09-2019, 09:16 AM Thread Starter
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The Ventura rack and OE luggage racks are awaiting re-sale. I had to purchase some passenger grab handles as they did not come with the bike.

In addition to being most of the way toward accessing the cylinder head for a spark plug and valve clearance check, I've got the fairing off and am working on adding the various power outlets, other electrical bits and driving lights. Still waiting for LED headlamp bulbs, driving lamps and heated grips to arrive.

One of the previous owners left me a gift of a Kisan Signal Minder which I found next to the stock flasher module, so the Tiger has self-canceling turn signals (hadn't noticed before.)

I found a Jack-b-quick driving lamp bracket on close-out so that is installed, awaiting the lamps.

Does anyone know a source for the matching plug for the three-pin heated grip socket? I can easily cut the current plug off and use something else but making a plug-in pigtail to connect everything to would be the more elegant solution I think.

MSF Ridercoach, IBA member
KTM 1290SA, Triumph Tiger 1050, BMW R80RT, Suzuki Vstrom 650, Suzuki DR350

Last edited by Slartidbartfast; 01-09-2019 at 09:19 AM.
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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-15-2019, 06:39 PM Thread Starter
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Other Motorcycle: Triumph Tiger 1050 ABS
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I got most of the planned tasks completed.

I addition to the valve check and AIS-delete, I replaced plugs and air filter, installed heated grips, various accessory outlets (switched and unswitched) and a voltmeter/thermometer.

Also cleaned, inspected and adjusted a bunch of things and generally got to know the bike a lot better.

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KTM 1290SA, Triumph Tiger 1050, BMW R80RT, Suzuki Vstrom 650, Suzuki DR350
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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old 05-02-2019, 12:48 PM
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Just checking in on this thread. Is there an AIS delete kit that has block off plates? Where did you purchase?

Also where did you find tunes and where did you buy your cable to connect?

What rear shock are you using?

FYI since the headlight housing is a projector, I replaced my headlight with a LED from Cyclops Performance LED....can get discount through ADV Rider. Made a huge difference. I only swapped out the regular headlight.

Darrin
2007 Tiger 1050
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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old 05-06-2019, 01:10 PM Thread Starter
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I don't know if there is a kit. I tapped the AIS plate spigots and screwed some button-head bolts in there with a little sealant on the threads.
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