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The €10 LED Mod

Riding your motorcycle off road at night is a fantastic, almost otherworldly, experience. Unfortunately, many of the great offroad and enduro bikes we use have dismal headlights, making it less-than-pleasurable and sometimes really dangerous!

Luckily for us, the advances in LED (Light Emitting Diode) technology have made excellent lighting available to us, with low enough wattage draw to be able to be installed even in enduro bikes with small alternators.

In this blog post, I will show you how easy it is to install a LED lamp on a KTM 525 EXC from 2005. I chose to use a 20W lamp since this model year has a 35W high beam instead of the 55W  on earlier models, thus giving a perfect fit for the electrical system.

I also chose to connect it in parallel with the original high beam, keeping the bike street legal. Local regulations may vary, so make sure to check this if it is valid for the kind of riding you do.

Suitable LED lights are available in different forms and price levels. LED technology is today so commonplace, that acceptable alternatives can be had for less than €10. To show exactly how cheap and easy it can be I bought this kind of lamp for €8 and connected with simple blade connectors in 15 minutes or so.

DISCLAIMER: I have made my best effort to guide you through this simple installation, but I cannot assume any liability or responsibility for any damages, personal or other, so please be careful and do this at your own risk. This mod is for bikes with DC (direct current) electrical systems! If there is already lights (and even better, a battery!) there is a good chance that your bike has a DC-system to tap into.

Parts needed & good to have:



  • 1 x 20W LED lamp OR other suitable LED lamp with wide beam and long throw
  • 2 x piggy back spade connectors (blade terminals) (top) OR 2 x splice connectors (bottom)


Good to have to give greater mounting freedom:

  • 1 x red wire in suitable length
  • 1 x black wire in suitable length
  • 2 x screw terminals


Tools needed:

  • Pliars to crimp the connectors on the cables
  • Small flat-blade screw driver (optional)



1. Figure out which connector type is best for your motorcycle. Since this KTM uses spade connectors to the headlight I used piggy back versions of these for a clean installation.


2. Figure out the best placement for the LED lamp on your bike. I used the supplied handlebar clamp for ease of use and serviceability. Placing it on a straight piece of the bar allows you to easily adjust the beam up/down.


3. Connect it! Attach extension wires if needed (with the screw terminals) and figure out which OEM wires to connect to. This can easily be done if you disconnect the OEM connector a bit and put the LED lamp wires on the connectors until it lights up when the high beam is on. Then, depending on you connector type, eiter add the splices to the right OEM wires together with the LED lamp wires OR crimp the piggy back/splice connectors/terminals onto the LED lamp wires and attach them to the headlight together with the OEM.

NOTE: Most new LED lamps have LED:s that can be mounted to + or – without damage, so look for this option.

4. ENJOY! You’re done and can now ride into the night!


I hope you enjoyed this simple guide and feel confident to make this simple installation that totally transforms night riding!

Stay tuned for another blog post on how to make a cheap headlamp and pictures from the results!


Have a nice weekend!

Kristofer, Motonaut

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Norway travel light

Pictures from last weekend trip to Hemsedal, Norway.

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Getting ready for the event.

The idea was to work for my friend from the Morocco trip in 2013, Lisa and her AIM-Challenge.

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We brought two bikes and had some truly great driving up the trails crossing the mountains with breathtaking views.

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My fellow XR-driver Johan ready for take-off.

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Pictures doesn´t make the nature justice, however you get the idea….

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A Motonaut Rack secures your load.

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This place in Hydalen was absolutely the most beautiful place in a long time….

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A short break in ”Hydalen”.

We also found a more technically challenging trail on our second day.2015-08-23 12.35.30

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Hemsedal from 920 meters above sea level.

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Thanks for the ride!


Jonas Jerndal

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Denmark Beach Rally 2015

For the third year in a row the season premiere for me was held on the Danish west coast, close to the summer village of Lökken, Denmark.

Driving on the beach is allowed in Denmark as long as you don`t go faster than 30 km/h….. in average was our conclusion.

Of course you have to give way for other participants on the beach, like people and their dogs. Consequently the perfect time to go there is early spring or late fall, this to have the whole horizon at your disposal.

Driving on that soft and unpredictable layer of sand can be a real challenge for both driver and machine. A big advantage is that most falls or mishaps occur during the start or stop sequence meaning the speed is low and risk of injuries are minimal. A really good opportunity to develop your driving skills on soft ground. Did I mention it´s pure fun!

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Starting up early with the ferry transfer from Gothenburg, Sweden we entered the long awaited beach at lunch time, ready for the experience to begin. Imagine letting go of a long winters longing for stretching out on your beloved motorbike, that was exactly what we all first did. You could hear joyful callouts from within the helmets and the engines revving at their best ability…jihaa!

Soon enough we reached a water crossing to wide and deep to drive through. The whole bunch was gathered as the hindrance occurred and we helped each other with the crossing over a narrow bridge. Later water crossings where crossed more or less successfully with only some wet boots and pants. One should always be careful and respect those ditches with water, often deeper than you expect. How we know? Well…

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Time for the brought lunch away from the always blowing wind, sitting on a sand dune enjoying the stretches and sea in front of you. Life is good!

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The day continued with several more enjoyable kilometers heading south until it was time to park the bike for today and gather with all the others at our pre booked hotel. Washing the bike off with some fresh water is advisable after a whole day driving in salty water and sand. But don´t forget yourself and that thirst!

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Next morning some of the participants left for an early ferry back home while others had another half day along the beach heading north, driving back more or less the same way as the day before. Above you have examples of how to load luggage for a weekend on your light bike, here with the Motonaut Rack Kit and some alternative bags.

Below my loading solution on a Honda XR650 R

Motonaut Raid configuration
Motonaut Raid configuration
20 + 30 + 20 liters
20 + 30 + 20 liters

If you have the chance to go for a beach drive, don´t hesitate but take the challenge and develop your driving and skills. But always respect others visiting the beach for other reasons like swimming, the silence and more.

I hope this story gave you some inspiration of driving onto the sand!


Jonas Jerndal

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KTM 1050 Adventure and Motonaut

KTM 1050 Adventure
KTM 1050 Adventure


The new KTM 1050 Adventure is a pleasant example of all the modern adventure bikes available today.

It´s a downsized version of the already well known KTM 1190 but with a slightly smaller engine displacement giving a sporty 95 hp and more than 100 Nm of torque. Furthermore the chassi components are simpler but still good enough for the most of us. It´s reasonably light at 209 kgs and with smaller tire sizes compared to it´s larger siblings the 1050 is really easy to handle and pure fun to drive.

You could say that ”Less is more” in this case, which goes hand in hand with our philosophy at Motonaut. So lets take a look at how to load the KTM 1050 Adventure with a Soft Luggage System as the Motonaut Rack Kit.

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Clean and tidy
The passenger seat, a perfect place for the Motonaut Rack
The passenger seat, a perfect place for the Motonaut Rack
The Motonaut Rack sen from the right side with one of the two forward straps attached round the frame.
The Motonaut Rack seen from the right side with one of the two forward straps, one on each side, attached round the frame.

Above you see how perfect a Motonaut Rack fits on the passenger part of the seat. Only four straps belonging to the Rack needs to be attached to the bike to get an extra Rack. Now you have numerous of possibilities to attach whatever soft bag you want. Below more detailed examples of how to draw the Racks attachment straps.

A good place to attach one of the four straps to the Motonaut Rack
A good place to attach one of the two aft straps, one on each side.

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Once the Motonaut Rack is fixed securely on the bike, lets start to load it up! Remember that the initial procedure of attaching the Rack to the bike is needed only once, now you have a safe, secure and flexible base to easily attach your luggage.

To strap down your bags we offer our flexible and strong Adjustastraps, as the name implies they are easily adjustable between 70 and 120 cm. This way you never again have to accept excessive strap materiel hanging around imposing a security threat and more. Just adjust them to the length you need.

A loading example, here a 49 liter large "Rack Pack" from Ortlieb.
A loading example, here a 49 liter large ”Rack Pack” from Ortlieb.
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The side facing forward
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The side facing backwards towards the bikes hard rack.


What about that hard rack already on the bike, can we use it as well?

As an example we added a tail bag of about 12 liters on the hard rack. Larger bags can be loaded as well according personal needs. However, do always consider the load limits set by the manufacturer, usually about 5 kgs.
As an example we added a tail bag of about 12 liters on the hard rack. Larger bags can be loaded as well according personal needs. However, do always consider the load limits set by the manufacturer, typically about 5 kgs.

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Other examples of loading, you can load the bag in any direction you want as you can see below. It´s also perfectly possible to have one or two additional soft bags alongside the Motonaut Rack and the saddle. We´ll dig into that a little bit later, so stay tuned!

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Remember that a light motorbike is always preferable to a heavy one.  Eg. with bulky and space consuming hard panniers.

You should also consider to go for the Motonaut soft luggage loading concept. The Motonaut Rack kit and some soft bags are all you need!


Jonas Jerndal


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A short film from our 2up mini-adventure


I put together some footage from last weekend to a short film. The ride was really nice with beautiful scenery and mixed surfaces. We were on some technical trails, but came through it all quite easily. The DR650SE behaved beautifully with 60/40 Street/Dirt tires. We even took on trails where we had pillion-less bikes get stuck on a previous trip!

Ride Free & Go Anywhere!


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Two up with rackless soft luggage – the light way to do it!

At Motonaut, we know just how versatile our rackless & modular soft luggage system, the Motonaut Rack, is. We want you to know too, so we will use our blog to show you examples!

In this blog post I’ll show you how to use Motonaut Rack to take 100 liters of luggage and a passenger on a 650-class thumper, in this case the venerable Suzuki DR650SE.

The standard setup of Motonaut Rack looks like this:



Note the addition of a small bar for keeping the dry bag off the exhaust. It’s not necessary for the heat, but helps keep the bag cool-ish and keeps it of the direction indicator. This is actually a rock protector for the rear shifter on a mountain bike and only cost about €3.

Then we add some padding for the passenger (since the stock seat is horrible). It is just an old sleeping mat that has been cut to fit and extends the saddle a bit and provides more cushioning.


Then we add two small dry bags (20 l each) on the sides by using the front and rear rings, as well as the front mounting straps, of the Motonaut Rack. The rear straps are just run through the ring and around the bag. The front straps first go thought the ring, then over the bag and around the front mounting strap before coming back over the bag again. This creates a solid mounting, keeping the bag in place!


Finally we put the top bag (60 l) on by using the rear rings and the fender strap to run the straps through, giving the passenger plenty of room and a nice backrest.


This is how you get enough luggage for a weekend away together without adding tens of kilograms of metal luggage racks and hard boxes to your bike. Total weight for all the luggage on this trip was 21-22 kg…

Material used:

  • 1 Suzuki DR650SE
  • 1 Motonaut Rack Kit (Motonaut Rack on the bike + 6 Adjustastraps to attach the bags)
  • 2 small dry bags, 20 l each
  • 1 large dry bag, 60 l
  • 1 mountain bike rock protector

Cost for this setup (excl bike!) is about €150. The Motonaut Rack can be bought in our shop and the bags and rock protector can be bought in most sporting equipment stores.


I hope you get to go out and enjoy the summer from your motorcycle!

Ride Free & Go Anywhere!


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Slideshow from the 2010 ride around the Rocky Mountains


In 2010 I took a 45-day road trip around the Rocky Mountains, travelling the height of USA twice.

I bought a used Suzuki DR350S for the fair price of $990 and spent a few hours on preparing it for the trip. Basically gave it an oil change & valve adjustment, got a set of higher handlebars & barkbusters and figured out how to mount the spare fuel canister and luggage. This luggage solution became the starting point, since it’s light weight and low price showed that adventure luggage does not have to be hard or expensive!

I left Boulder, Colorado, for British Columbia in Canada, from where I turned south until I hit the Mexican border in Tijuana. From there I made my way back to Boulder and sold the bike before I flew down to Lima, Peru, to continue my journey. But that’s another story…


Ride Free & Go Anywhere!


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TT Adventure Days at Säfsen, Sweden

Ready to go.


Instructor and tour leaders preparations
Instructor and tour leaders preparations.
Practice is the key.
Practice is the key.
Experienced instructors from Touratech.
Experienced instructors from Touratech.
Happy girls.
Happy girls.
Getting ready for one of the guided tours.
Getting ready for one of the guided tours.
All tours included a break.
All tours included a break.
A dusty face, but still happy.
A dusty face, but still happy.
An old railway station now as a café run by a dutch couple.
An old railway station now as a café run by a dutch couple.
The only available gas station was busy indeed.
The only available gas station was busy indeed.
Different lectures were available from different adventures. Her my favorite
Different lectures were available from different adventures. Her my favorite ”Two bikers one world”. Anders and Petra soon beginning on their third year away.
Demonstration of the technical track.
Demonstration of the technical track.
Getting dirty is fun!
Getting dirty is fun!
Almost sucess
Almost sucess
A water crossing is a must on a technical track.
A water crossing is a must on a technical track.
This driver made it with the panniers on!
This driver made it with the panniers on!
The author (on the left) in a hurry to get the tire of .
The author (on the left) in a hurry to get the tire off .
The last station in the competition.
The last station in the competition.
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GS Meeting Sweden 150521-24


I attended the GS Meeting Sweden 2015 in Feringe in the southern part of Sweden. It was a great meetup with like-minded bikers from northern Europe with challenging routes and great tour leaders!

I was very happy to see so many fellow adventure riders using the Motonaut Rack on their motorcycles!


Ride Free & Go Anywhere!