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Category: Electrics and electronics

Everything powered by electricity, and all the driving assistances

CAN Bus and OBD2

The KTM 790 Adventure is like many other modern motorcycles employing CAN Bus for communications between the ECU, sensors and actuators. And some other devices like the front lights. A CAN bus is just two wires with data flying through it that can be read and written to.

A lot can be done from a CAN Bus, from capturing detailed read of temperatures, to uploading a new map for the engine. Your KTM dealer uses the CAN Bus during service to update the software on various parts of the bike, and to read the diagnostic codes. The risks of uploading software or new maps are high, pushing the wrong values may end up wrecking your engine. Reading or clearing diagnostic codes and monitor motorcycle performance however is perfectly fine, and can be achieved with your phone and a bit of hardware.

The simplest way to get access to the CAN Bus is the diagnostic port under the seat, it’s easy to find, and it’s sealed with a protective cap.

Diagnostic port

OBD2 is originally a US standard, a requirement for all vehicles to provide a standard way to read data and diagnostic codes. OBD2 is nothing else than a CAN Bus and a specification for a diagnostic port. All the solutions on the market do use an OBD2 port. In order to use them you need an adapter from the KTM diagnostic port to OBD2. There are plenty of vendors selling those, just search for “KTM OBD2 Adapter“. One that’s proven to work is this Lonelec adaptor (which comes with all the hardware to use TuneECU on Windows).

Once you have an OBD2 port, it’s just a matter of finding a software solution for you. The picture below have been taken using OBDLink on Android, using a OBDLink MX+ Bluetooth adapter. Just avoid the cheap adapters, they do not work properly most of the time.

Once connected (and bound via Bluetooth, Wifi or USB if/as appropriate), you’ll be able to examine any “thrown codes” and peek at some commonly coded sensors.

Techies that study this stuff may want to dig into an Adventure Rider thread titled “Results from hacking the KTM SuperDuke 1290 CAN bus”, as many of the “secret codes” used on the 790 are likely to be the same as other KTM models.

Many thanks to Scott McCrory for the original idea, some of the text and all the images for this article.

3D Printed GPS support

For other supports, see GPS mounts.

I designed two GPS support. The first version was very simple and only need drilling to set in place. But it failed once, and once is one too many. Please stop using that mount or at a minimum use a tether.

The second version is more robust, uses threaded inserts to keep thing in place. But it requires more DIY work.

All my designs are free, I provide the STL ready to print and also the OpenSCAD file used to create it, allowing you to modify the design if you wish. OpenSCAD is free and can be installed on any computer.

Original version (bottom), vs version for inserts, both fresh from printing.

Original simple version

The files are still available on Thingiverse. If you print or have printed this design be aware that the tabs holding the mount to the bike can break. At a minimum please use a tether (any kind of line preventing your GPS to fall if the tabs break).

Version with inserts

This version is sturdier, but requires some manual labor once the part is printed. So first you print the part using your favorite techniques. The STL is also available on thingiverse. Note that for extrusion printing the part will need supports for all the holes.

Then you need brass inserts and fit them. I found mine on amazon, but those are very easy to source. the part is designed for two type of inserts:

  • Two M5x10x7 to insert in the holes connecting to the bike
  • Four M4x10x6 for the AMPS pattern

To insert them put them in place in the entrance of the hole (there is a lip for this purpose in the print) then use a soldering iron to make it hot and let it sink in the plastic by using just the weight of the soldering iron, don’t push! When it is getting very close to its final position remove the soldering iron, flip the part and press it against something flat. this video should make this clearer:

Once the inserts are installed, putting it on the bike is trivial. Bolt it on. Then use 4mm screws to attach your favorite device.

First design on the left, print with insert on the right, ready to go on the bike.

Fuel Gauge

People are confused by the fuel gauge. Plus the fact that some of them where not calibrated properly lead to a lot of confusion.

First of all the fuel gauge only works for the second half of the tank. This is explained in the manual. For the first 10 liters the fuel gauge will show full and the range indicators will display a range with a plus sign, the range being the distance you will do on the half tank. For the second half of the tank each bar is approximately two liters.

If this is not confusing enough, there is also a special behavior of the fuel gauge, caused by the split tank design. The fuel gauge is mounted in the right side tank bottom. When the bike is parked, on the side stand, the fuel will will run to the left side fuel tank trough the connection tubing on the bottom. With little fuel (1/4 and less) in the tank most fuel will end up on the left side. When you start riding, the fuel gauge will indicate a very low fuel level, blinking red. After a few minutes the fuel will move over to the right hand side again and balance out, then the fuel gauge will show normal level again and the fuel range will increase to what it actually is.

In short, don’t trust the fuel level as you start the bike. Ride for three or four minutes to get an accurate reading.

This is not a defect, but a normal behavior of the tank design with two low halves. If KTM had mounted the fuel gauge in the left side, it would show a much too large level when you start riding, which might leave you stranded shortly after. One option would be two fuel sensors, one on each side and some software to clear things up, but hey, more complexity, more money 🙂

Note also that the fuel tank has two valves on the bottom, one on each side. If you tank reads full but your bike stops, check that the last person who touched the bike actually opened *both* valves.


The denali sound bomb mini is a simpe upgrade to the original horn. It fits right there.

A denali split sound bomb without the compressor is also a direct fit in place of the original horn. Install is more involved as the compressor needs to be be fixed under the seat for example.

Warning: The denali pulls 30amp, way way more than the original puny horn. Fuses on the bike are all 10Amps. And since the fuse for the horn also controls the instrument cluster and the brake lights there is a high risk of blowing the fuse and losing those functions each time you use the horn if plugged directly. Please feed the denali from the battery, with a large fuse and a relay from the original wires.

Additional lights

The headlights are pretty good from stock. With 3 positions: DLR (peripheral lights), Low beam (middle lights) and high beam (top light). The bottom light is always on. Low beam is switched on automatically when the sensor on the dashboard detects darkness, or manually if DLR is turned off in the menus (this may be useful in fog for example).

There is no obvious spots to put additional lights, and so far not a lot of installs have been published. I’ve seen a very long video with lights installed on the lower tube supporting the front end (but warning the clearance with the forks is very tight) and this very extensive install report on Facebook.

KTM added lights to its catalog: P/N 63514910033, 487€. Those are PIAA lights, made by Valeo for KTM. The hardware simply replace the metallic braces for the headlight, adding mounting points.

The mounting braces are available stand alone as p/n 63514910044, €150 for just the bars without any connector.

Denali offers 790 Adv specific mounts, mounted on the same tube under the instrument cluster, with an additional leg to stabilise it and not just relying on the clamp. $120.

Denali mount

BDCW also offers light mounts and optionally the associated lights to go with it. Plenty of options detailed in this ADVRider thread ($150 for the mounts, $500 for the mount plus some nice LED lights).

BDCW mounts & lights

GIVI also has specific mounts for the 790, reference LS7710. Those are very low, attached to the bash plate, and not compatible with crash guards as they use the same attachment point. €60 or so. See this install report (more pic in the comments).

There is a company in Columbia, Lion, making mounts as well. Their picture is from a S model, it is unclear if a R fender would clear the one fixed under the light housing. $60 each pair. The site is a little scarce on information.

The cheapo option is to buy a 18mm “Stauff clamp” from a hydraulic shop and to use it to mount the lights on the lower bar. $10 for a pair. As seen on FB in a comment by Kris Eric :

Stauf clamp in action

Reset service warning

The service warning light can be turned off by pressing the right buttons in the right sequence. Note that the service light has two triggers: mileage and date.

The secret is to navigate to highlight the “Settings” menu, and then hold up and down together for 5 seconds. This pops out a page where you can change the data to the next service.

Each press on set will increase the mileage. The date is automatically preselected for 12 months and can’t be changed. To cancel, press the back button. To validate press set for a few seconds. This procedure is not the same as the one described in the shop manual (see documents), but the one there doesn’t work as described.

Tire Pressure Monitoring System

TPMS information is shown in the manual, there is a part number (P/n 63512931044, around €160), but the hardware is not available yet.

The part for the 790 Duke (P/n 64112932044. £114) is not compatible, the KTM tool cannot install it.

The install will be fairly involved: tires need to be removed to install replacement valves, a receiver plugged in, and a software activation done.

A cheap alternative, if you have a Zumo GPS, Garmin offers TPMS valves caps that connects to it.

KTM MY RIDE navigation

You need to download the KTM MyRide app (£8/€9) to your smartphone. If you want to operate without a data service you can also download the country maps to your phone. The Bluetooth (optional) symbol on the combination instrument actually refers to a pairing of a device via KTM MY RIDE

The navigation app is fairly basic, and the display in the bike is just directions and pictograms. For short road trips it is fine. But not at the level of a real GPS or phone app like waze, google map or calimoto.

Note that early bikes had problems connecting to phones and showing navigation. See early faults, the bike may need a software update.

Very old bluetooth devices may have problem communicating with the bike. The first gen Sena SMH 5 and 10 for example, the ones without USB port for updating, will not work properly.

Smartphone mount

Note: Keep in mind that phones are hard to read in strong direct sunlight, can overheat easily and switch off. And they are difficult to manipulate with gloves.

The bracket for handlebar mounting p/n 61712991100 at £61, then the case for the phone into which the bracket clips is about £35 (different part numbers for different phones).

Plenty of third party provide phone mounts, and using a GPS mount with some RAM hardware is probably the better option as it moves the phone higher in the field of vision. A quadlock on a RAM ball is quite practical for example. Or a X-Grip which also mount with a RAM ball.

GPS mount

See the article on power to connect the GPS.

KTM part

The most viewable place is above the TFT screen where the “Remove for GPS Mount” is. There is a part from KTM (p/n 63512992044, €58) but there is reports of some instability. Some others seem happy with it however.

KTM Official GPS support

Drill Hack

In a pinch you can drill the part on the bike to put a RAM ball. This has been reported to be weak as the plastic part is not designed for it, and it causes vibration with large GPS. Innovative reinforcements have been implemented (back plate, epoxy glue filling…). But the tabs connecting to the bike are definitely not designed for this kind of load, if you do something like this do tether your GPS for safety.

Ram ball screwed on GPS location – Krysař Krysař on Facebook

3D Print

Or you can print a support if you have access to a 3D printer, or pay to get it printed. It’s a simple wedge with an AMPS pattern on top and a hole to pass the power through. Check the page dedicated to self printing your GPS mount. Use with a B-Sized RAM ball on an AMPS pattern (RAM-B-347U), a short RAM Arm (RAM-B-201U-A) to a RAM ball fixed on the back of your device (Which for a Garmin device mount is probably another RAM-B-347U). But to tuck the GPS as much as possible a combination of a RAM ball on the GPS and a socket on the mount makes for the best clearance. The socket is not made by RAM, but can be found at various places online.

3D printed support in situ

MotoMinded took this 3D model, improved it, and is printing it in a sturdy material. The result is for sale for $22.

There is another 3D printable model, only at shapeways (aka, you can’t print it yourself). It is different and doesn’t seem to require any other hardware (note: it is in two parts, you have to buy both, and it’s unclear what hardware to use to link both parts. Let me know if you know more about this mount).

3D printed mount on shapeway

Vanasche Mount

The only mount machined from billet aluminium, with a design to pull the mount in place when tightening the screws, this is probably the most sturdy/stable mount available. Plus it allows for the cable to go down under it to get power. Available anodized orange or black. AMPS pattern. From Vanasche Motorsports, $100 (or Motominded). Also available down under for 170 $AU and in Europe from Offroad-Kontor (€120).


The most recent entry so far in the market, MotoPumps offers an articulated GPS mount with an AMPS pattern that mount itself on the stock plastic part. $80 with free shipping in the US.


SW Motech now have a mount available, priced around €60. This projects very far back, over the TFT screen, the device can be mounted directly to the mount. The mount is removable, it clips to its base. It seems this setup wobbles a bit (video)

SWMotech mount


Givi has released a mount specific to the 790, putting a bar high up to fasten your devices to. Reference Givi FB 7710. There is no images in the product description on Givi’s page, but an ebay auction showed a couple of pics of the manual, see below. Around €40. This mount will only function if the original plastic part is present as it uses it to lock itself.

The Givi mount is hackable, one reader (hi Anders!) installed it rotated 180º to get closer to the screen (and higher), and reports that it can be drilled to eventually change the position of the bar. See pic below.

Givi FB7710 mounted at 180º with a lockable mount for a GPSMAP 276cx


Similar to the GIV mount, but narrower, and with possible adjustment of the bar, the company Lion in Colombia offers a simple metallic mount that grips the original plastic for stability. $60

Touratech mount

Touratech is making a simple mount ($75), putting a bar up on the dashboard to attach anything, but with a metallic base. In the picture it is mounted with a lockable Garmin mount.

Handlebar mounts

There is a handlebar mount from the 790 Duke that fits (P/n  64112992033, €40). But this put the GPS very low at a place where it is hard to read while riding.

KTM handlebar mount
Markus Ramirez/Facebook

On the handlebar there are other alternatives like the MotoMinded Stoutmount which is offering a little bit more flexibility in GPS placement.

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