Taking the edge off: Rajputana’s KTM 390 Duke cafe racer

KTM is rising incredibly hasty in India. Final year, the Austrian marque sold 64,000 bikes—up bigger than 25% on the outdated year. It’s ample to present almost about high-selling incumbents Hero and Bajaj, and the style has been seen by high custom shop Rajputana.

“We had no longer seen a cafe racer originate finished on a 390 Duke in India, so we made up our minds to present it a hasten,” says founder Vijay Singh. “It was once a consumer mission and we susceptible a 2015 Duke.”

Rajputana private a rock-stable fame within the subcontinent; when Harley-Davidson launched the Avenue, let’s explain, they tapped the Jaipur-basically based exclusively exclusively shop for the first formally sanctioned custom Avenue originate.

This KTM was once a non-public consumer commission, though. The 390 Duke is a preferred model, alongside with the 200, for the reason that Indian market favors smaller skill bikes. And the 43 hp single-cylinder engine—moreover susceptible in Husqvarna’s 401s—is with out doubt one of the most best likely within the industrial.

The recurring temporary with custom KTMs, no topic where the builder is basically based exclusively exclusively, is to originate it search less treasure a KTM. The dynamic qualities of the bikes are effectively liked, nonetheless some retro-inclined of us fetch the distinctive styling too hard-edged or in-your face. And that was once the case here.

The Rajputana crew has left the engine and suspension by myself, since KTM dialed in those sides brilliantly on the manufacturing facility. There’s a straight-thru employ machine to disencumber the respiratory, nonetheless the predominant effort has been centered on the bodywork: there’s a brand original tank, tail unit and mini fairing hand-crafted from 20-gauge low carbon steel.

“The tank was once constructed from scratch,” says Vijay. “It was once inspired by the iconic 2007 Yamaha YZF-R1, sooner than the crossplane cranks had been launched.” On both aspect, linked to the tank, are the projector headlights from a BMW GS, and the KTM speedo has been relocated to the high of the tank, to clear up the bar house. Snake Skins tank pads abet the rider’s knees to grip.

There’s a brand original rear frame too, with a possess that appears treasure it would possibly maybe perhaps private reach straight from KTM’s possess studio Kiska.

“The possess started as a wireframe model the usage of welding wires, and when the possess and proportions had been finalised, we made the original subframe the usage of light steel pipe,” says Vijay. “We didn’t exercise the stock mounting points—instead, we susceptible a CNC machine to originate original ones.”

The LED lighting on the tail is embedded in neatly sliced acrylic, and the total result is slick and educated.

The metallic paint is low-key and subtle, with hints of gold in other areas on hard sides. It reflects the subtle visible ethos of Jaipur, the capital of Rajasthan: “We ethical wished to acquire far from the recurring shaded or greyscale.”

They wished to acquire far from the 17-dawdle alloy wheels too. “The sides are off a Bonneville we rebuilt within the past—they had been ethical laying spherical in storage. You by no formulation peep a 390 Duke with spokes, they in most cases straight add loads extra persona to the motorcycle.”

To acquire the Triumph wheels to fit, Rajputana turned out a space of custom hubs on their precise lathe, the usage of billet aluminum. (“You simply count the holes within the rim and drill the hubs—easy sauce!”)

The tires are Pirelli Diablo Supercorsa SC slicks, 140 fragment on the front and 190 on the again, which withstand temperature hasty within the original climate. “We strongly ponder that racing slicks originate all the pieces ethical better to search at.”

The gentle stock brake rotors and calipers stay, nonetheless Rajputana private added their very private clip-ons, and upgraded the grasp cylinder to a Brembo radial unit. “The brake in actual fact feel is simply improbable now.”

Rajputana private delivered one of those tricky ‘most productive of each and each worlds’ bikes: a whole restyle that doesn’t compromise the dynamic qualities of the original. We’re no longer averse to the angular styling of KTM manufacturing facility bikes, nonetheless we want to admit: here is with out doubt one of the most tastiest KTMs we’ve seen.

Rajputana Customs | Fb | Instagram | Photos by Salman Aarif

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