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WHAT’S IT COST? $99.40.
CONTACT? (800) 237-9906 or www.imsproducts.com.
WHAT STANDS OUT? Here’s a list of things that stand out with the IMS Coolant Recovery tank.
(1) Parts. The IMS kit comes complete with the plastic recovery tank (with fittings), a button-head bolt, six zip-ties, 48 inches of 1/8-inch clear tubing, 24 inches of 7/32-inch clear tubing, 24 inches of black tubing and 36 inches of safety wire. We only used the safety wire to fish the clear plastic tubing up through the frame’s downtube.
(2) Concept. The trick aspect of IMS’ KTM Recovery tank is that it’s designed to slip up inside the downtube of the KTM’s frame. Once installed the IMS tank is invisible to the naked eye and totally protected from any kind of abuse.
(3) Science. The cooling circuit in a bike’s radiators has a maximum volume. If the water in the radiator overheats, it expands and builds up pressure under the radiator cap. It can depress the spring. When this happens, the water will gush out of the radiator as steam or water. Before long your engine will run out of water and seize. To stop this from happening, coolant recovery tanks are added down-line on the overflow tube. The water being pushed out of the radiator cap is captured in the recovery tank and the magic occurs once the engine and water cool down. Through a phenomenon known as thermo-siphoning, the water in the recovery tank is sucked back into the radiator by the negative pressure in the system (much like sucking soda through a straw).
(4) Good stuff. The IMS recovery tank prevents the loss of coolant due to engine overheating. Engines can overheat because of high altitude, hot weather, heavy loads on the engine (like sand), excessive clutch usage, clogged radiators, low water levels or broken impellers. Every MXA test rider liked that the IMS catch tank was tucked safely out of harm’s way.
(5) Installation. IMS includes complete instructions. Follow them religiously, especially the part where you have to drill a small hole in your KTM downtube.
(6) Performance. Most MXA test riders don’t have overheating issues, but for the few who do, the IMS recovery system was a godsend.
WHAT’S THE SQUAWK? We had two minor quibbles. (1) Since we had to remove the gas-cap vent fitting from the right side of the frame to use the hole for the new overflow lines, we had to install a pre-drilled Works Connection steering stem bolt for the gas cap vent hose. (2) Measure very carefully before drilling the hole in your downtube. IMS says it will include a template to mark the exact location of the hole.
MXA RATING: Who needs this? Every factory bike has a recovery tank. Most offroad teams run catch tanks to compensate for slow-going in the woods. Any rider who races in sand, high temperatures or revs his bike (even in the pits) should consider it. For the average rider doing five-lap motos, it isn’t a must-have; however, if you’ve ever overheated your bike, you might be a coolant recovery tank candidate.