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DIRT BIKE magazine Beta 350 RR EFI test is out


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I was expecting more after seeing the test bike win Vet MX races at Glen Helen. Maybe that happened after the print deadline?

 

They have a lot of nice things to say about the bike, "At the end of the day, we can only marvel at how good a job Beta has done."

The fork is "suprisingly sophisticated" and "very soft, emphasizing the Beta's trail-bike personality".

 

A few things I tend to disagree with: "trail riding is what the Beta is all about. Weight and soft suspension "make the bike a handful at race speed"

 

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I was expecting more after seeing the test bike win Vet MX races at Glen Helen. Maybe that happened after the print deadline?

 

They have a lot of nice things to say about the bike, "At the end of the day, we can only marvel at how good a job Beta has done."

The fork is "suprisingly sophisticated" and "very soft, emphasizing the Beta's trail-bike personality".

 

A few things I tend to disagree with: "trail riding is what the Beta is all about. Weight and soft suspension "make the bike a handful at race speed"

It's the perspective of where they are coming from too... The comparison between the Beta and the KTM 350 a few years ago was warped also. ..The ktm got the nod ..not surprisingly but locally guys were saying the ktm wasn't that great.. better for more the gncc faster stuff but for the hard trail the low end was less and not so good. The beta gets the nod locally from what I've heard.. I mean the ktm is great .. for more fast stuff but it isn't that big a deal here. If you have better off idle low end and your bike hooks up to the ground that's more important.   It's a magazine anyway. It's take it all with a grain of salt and read between the lines.  The suspension for my first Beta was so good that I literally didn't need to do anything to the bike. It was.. and is still awesome  and set up great for the types of trails we have around here. I guess I would have stiffened things up up front if we had a lot more open flowing trails.  I mean weight ? and soft suspension? "make the bike a handful at race speed". well a stiff suspension makes slow tight riding not so enjoyable either.. That's just where you just don't take that part seriously..and plan on valving for your weight ..or springs for your weight right off etc.. That just goes almost without saying.

Edited by hawaiidirtrider
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A few things I tend to disagree with: "trail riding is what the Beta is all about. Weight and soft suspension "make the bike a handful at race speed"

 

100% correct and if you ride bikes back to back that are lighter you will see. Beta's are the modern day XR400 and while they are raced, there's much better bikes for racing,,, 4T's that is. My Beta handles great slow just when shifting out of 1st on up the bikes starts to show the weight/other differences and other bikes start to handle/feel better.

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Modern day XR 400. Thats a bit of a stretch..The bike  with just a spring rate change could easily win in the hands of a capable rider. That  fact has been proven without question many times on many overweight bikes of various brands. Leti at Erzberg on that pos BMW being a great example that comes to mind. Scott Summers on the XR 600 being another. As far as the weight yes when it comes to racing lighter is always better, that much I will give you. One thing you have to take into account  is the magazine editors that critique these and other bikes are not hired primarily for their riding skills, A good representation  of what they are all about would be a cross section of regular posters on this forum .Besides what else are they going to say or more accurately ,what else can they say. They are not going to bite the hand that feeds them and are therefore forced to walk a fine line the skewing of results being rule rather than the exception..

Edited by widebear
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 Weight and soft suspension "make the bike a handful at race speed"

 

Yep, just ask the Purvines guys that do Mach Schnell through the desert and finished 2nd, 4th, and 5th in the Hare and Hound series. Of course the Betas are sprung and valved soft stock - their export manager explained why - but when you actually set up the suspension for the task at hand they are formidable race bikes.

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Modern day XR 400. Thats a bit of a stretch..The bike  with just a spring rate change could easily win in the hands of a capable rider. That  fact has been proven without question many times on many overweight bikes of various brands. Leti at Erzberg on that pos BMW being a great example that comes to mind. Scott Summers on the XR 600 being another. As far as the weight yes when it comes to racing lighter is always better, that much I will give you. One thing you have to take into account  is the magazine editors that critique these and other bikes are not hired primarily for their riding skills, A good representation  of what they are all about would be a cross section of regular posters on this forum .Besides what else are they going to say or more accurately ,what else can they say. They are not going to bite the hand that feeds them and are therefore forced to walk a fine line the skewing of results being rule rather than the exception..

Remember Scott Summer and his winning XR600? Is that a race bike just because it wins races??? You are correct, most posters here trail ride and not race. Beta's tag line is "the play bike" which is what the bike does best in the hands of average Joe. Comparing it to a XR400 is not bad at all. Mag editors are not the best riders to reflect what "we" feel. However my opinion is what I posted and should fall in what your " A good representation  of what they are all about would be a cross section of regular posters on this forum"  is but a "cross section of regular posters"  should mean from all brands experienced not just Betas.

 

Yep, just ask the Purvines guys that do Mach Schnell through the desert and finished 2nd, 4th, and 5th in the Hare and Hound series. Of course the Betas are sprung and valved soft stock - their export manager explained why - but when you actually set up the suspension for the task at hand they are formidable race bikes.

Yes Beta's do quite well in the desert but seem to fall off in HS/GNCC type of racing. Wonder why??

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 GNCC. Pretty tough to compete on a level playing field against purpose built racing 250's and 450's designed and marketed just for that task from the get go not to mention an established support  and aftermarket platform . The KTM 350's foundation lays with the 250's which in the sx ,xc form makes for a fine race bike. Remember KTM's first efforts at super cross? You gotta start somewhere.The fact that Beta can do reasonably well against those purpose build bikes speaks volumes about the brilliance of the basic design and I don't think we've seen the last..

Edited by widebear
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Remember Scott Summer and his winning XR600? Is that a race bike just because it wins races??? You are correct, most posters here trail ride and not race. Beta's tag line is "the play bike" which is what the bike does best in the hands of average Joe. Comparing it to a XR400 is not bad at all. Mag editors are not the best riders to reflect what "we" feel. However my opinion is what I posted and should fall in what your " A good representation  of what they are all about would be a cross section of regular posters on this forum"  is but a "cross section of regular posters"  should mean from all brands experienced not just Betas.

 

Yes Beta's do quite well in the desert but seem to fall off in HS/GNCC type of racing. Wonder why??

 

I do remember Scott winning on the XR600! That was my first back in the saddle bike. What a great bike it was. IMO, one of the funnest bikes I ever owned. I think the test articles are biased just because the guys that test them are really fast. And at a level of riding that most of us here can only dream about. 

 

FWIW, I always get nervous when I see a guy unload a XR400 for a "trail ride" On more than one occasion a clapped out XR400 has left the rest of the group in the dust. 

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I do remember Scott winning on the XR600! That was my first back in the saddle bike. What a great bike it was. IMO, one of the funnest bikes I ever owned. I think the test articles are biased just because the guys that test them are really fast. And at a level of riding that most of us here can only dream about. 

 

FWIW, I always get nervous when I see a guy unload a XR400 for a "trail ride" On more than one occasion a clapped out XR400 has left the rest of the group in the dust. 

  You'd be mistaken. Not withstanding your Burleson,Lewis, Seth Enslow and a small handful of others.

Edited by widebear
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So, which is it? Beta's are no good once shifted out of first gear OR Beta's do OK in the desert but not in GNCCs and HS? I know the world isn't completely linear, but still. 

 

Maybe they're not heavy enough for GNCCs... after all wunderkind Kailub Russell lamented how much the 150 kicked him around at Crawfordsville and said that the weight of the 450s helped them track better. I raced both a 250RR and a 350 Factory on the same day on the same HS trail and surprise ... the 250 was lighter and responded more to trail inputs, and the 350 was heavier and turned in 7% FASTER lap times at the end of the day on a beat up course.

 

Could it be that you've just got a sour taste in your mouth because you didn't take advantage of Beta's 6 month warranty when you said your bike was sucking oil from the beginning? Something else? Wait ... nevermind.

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 GNCC. Pretty tough to compete on a level playing field against purpose built racing 250's and 450's designed and marketed just for that task from the get go not to mention an established support  and aftermarket platform . The KTM 350's foundation lays with the 250's which in the sx ,xc form makes for a fine race bike. Remember KTM's first efforts at super cross? You gotta start somewhere.The fact that Beta can do reasonably well against those purpose build bikes speaks volumes about the brilliance of the basic design and I don't think we've seen the last..

Thus why I posted there are better race bikes. It is hard to get to the starting line let alone wining so why start out as an underdog?? Beta should have a model as close to the sx/xc model line with the factory versions as it can get but they choose to add bling and so-so "factory" parts instead.

 

So, which is it? Beta's are no good once shifted out of first gear OR Beta's do OK in the desert but not in GNCCs and HS? I know the world isn't completely linear, but still. 

 

Maybe they're not heavy enough for GNCCs... after all wunderkind Kailub Russell lamented how much the 150 kicked him around at Crawfordsville and said that the weight of the 450s helped them track better. I raced both a 250RR and a 350 Factory on the same day on the same HS trail and surprise ... the 250 was lighter and responded more to trail inputs, and the 350 was heavier and turned in 7% FASTER lap times at the end of the day on a beat up course.

 

Could it be that you've just got a sour taste in your mouth because you didn't take advantage of Beta's 6 month warranty when you said your bike was sucking oil from the beginning? Something else? Wait ... nevermind.

150's are mid size bikes for teenagers, go ride a mini and report back, I bet you will override the chassis with the same outcome as he had. Maybe it was the fact that the 350 was or has been posted by many easier bike to ride putting more traction down. For most with a time watch 300-350 4t turns better time but just don't have the snap of the 2t that appears faster. Same with the 450, it must be faster it's a 450. Never said the Beta's were bad just better race bikes out there. Sour no just stating facts or at least my opinion unlike yours, isn't bias from a dealer standpoint. Talk about not biting the hand that feeds you!

Edited by weantright
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Beta didn't have a finisher in the top 20 of the GNCC in 2014.

Neither did Sherco or Gas-Gas or TM or Suzuki, Kawasaki, Husaberg, etc. Can we rule all of them out now as race bikes?

 

AMA Hare Scrambles is an East West series that just doesn't matter to anyone anymore.

 

The enduro guys choose the 2-strokes as does Cody and most other enduro riders. There is no point in talking bad about 4 strokes in that arena since very few choose them.

 

Endurocross, Max Gerston on a 350 (not the new one?). He is ahead of Mike Brown on the Husky 4 stroke. Does that make it better? http://www.enduro360.com/2014/10/21/gone-racing/beta-podiums-at-everett-endurocross/

 

Vet MX, this stock 350 test bike at Glen Helen went 1-1, 2 times against modified MX bikes. https://thumpertalk.com/topic/1078322-beta-in-racing/page-7 https://thumpertalk.com/topic/997549-beta-mx/page-6

 

Beta's are doing fine in Hare and Hound as stated.

 

World Enduro Johnny Aubert finished the season in 3rd. Sherco was 4th with Oriol Mena.

 

Most of us won't be in any Championship results in the Pro class anyway's. So pick what suits you.

Beta 4-strokes do make good race bikes. To me.

Edited by Johnny Depp
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The lady winning all the HS around here, local, and national events, as well as doing quite well in Endurocross and winning in national extreme enduro comps is on a stock 300.

I would be willing to bet money on her against any of the posters on this thread.

Edited by BassMan
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There is a simple reason Beta isn't doing anything in GNCC, they don't have the riders! If a bike can do well in the two extremes of tight  Endurocross and wide open Hare & Hound it can obviously do GNCC. Its not like the Factory KTM guys are running stock bikes. They have the works suspension (or what ever KTM calls it) and built motors just like a Beta rider would have. Strip a Beta down of all it accessories and the weight would be pretty close to a KTM.

 

 

Now I do believe the Beta is too soft for most racing, but most racers get their suspension done anyways. 

 

Endurocross, Max Gerston on a 350 (not the new one?). He is ahead of Mike Brown on the Husky 4 stroke. Does that make it better? http://www.enduro360...tt-endurocross/

 

 

Max is riding a 2014 Factory with I believe a stock motor.

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We are not talking pros here and the need to post brands isn't necessary. With the exception of Ccullins' son we are all average riders and this is where "better bikes out there" for racing comes from. With the average racer looking to be competitive, it will take longer to win on a 4t Beta vs. others. I will put money down on this, faster lap times with other brands vs. Beta's 4t, just the 4t's now. I have proved this with three riders on my home track which is less technical and more faster flowing. With the exception of one rider (my son) none of them rode any of the bikes before. Same day, one bike on track and 10 minutes times. Move to other riding areas and people riding my bikes back to back all came away with the Beta being slower (feeling wise no timing was used) and the weight impacted overall performance. Motor was good and strong but lacks the snap of what they were use to. If you want to trail ride, explore or just have fun Beta's are great bikes. If you want to race, there are better bikes out there for the average Joe looking to be competitive and less expensive to boot.

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Depends on where you ride as well. Some locals  and conditions are going to penalize hp and yank. With the conditions as they are right now in my neck of the woods the riders of mx bikes being used in the woods are paying the price. Higher price than my play bike with it's heavier flywheel and smoother power delivery. Mind you thats why I have three bikes. No point taking a knife to a gun fight.

Edited by widebear
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A few quotes:

 

"Thus why I posted there are better race bikes.

 

the need to post brands isn't necessary.

 

 I will put money down on this, faster lap times with other brands vs. Beta's 4t,

 

with the Beta being slower (feeling wise no timing was used)

 

 but lacks the snap"

 

 

Many a rider has been wrong about lap times by guessing. Save your money on betting and get a timer. Maybe even try something longer than 10 minute "races"? Some guy named Doug Henry started this 4st.revolution by going faster while looking and feeling slower.

 

Snap in a motor to me means it's the wrong setup. It feels cool to get sideways, but you will wear yourself down and likely go slower, especially on longer runs. The most useful purpose for snap in today's moto world is to clear a jump with a short approach in SX/MX.

 

Your bike is a 2014 and the thread is about the 2015 test in Dirt Bike magazine. It could be different than yours.

 

You obviously have some other makes in mind, why not share them with us?

 

It is obvious you know a ton about bikes, and have ridden and owned far more than I have. All aspects of performance are debatable. I happen to think that Beta is building the best power delivery in the market based on exactly what you think is a problem.  I will use my bike for all types of riding, not one specific discipline. I choose Beta with my eyes open wide. Thanks for trying to warn us anyways.

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Correct, overall remarks seem to be the same no matter what the conditions were. Test at my house the conditions were moist woods where HP should have been king. 

Moist is one thing. Gooseshit  on teflon slippery is another.

Edited by widebear
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Beta didn't have a finisher in the top 20 of the GNCC in 2014.

Neither did Sherco or Gas-Gas or TM or Suzuki, Kawasaki, Husaberg, etc. Can we rule all of them out now as race bikes?

 

AMA Hare Scrambles is an East West series that just doesn't matter to anyone anymore.

 

The enduro guys choose the 2-strokes as does Cody and most other enduro riders. There is no point in talking bad about 4 strokes in that arena since very few choose them.

 

Endurocross, Max Gerston on a 350 (not the new one?). He is ahead of Mike Brown on the Husky 4 stroke. Does that make it better? http://www.enduro360.com/2014/10/21/gone-racing/beta-podiums-at-everett-endurocross/

 

Vet MX, this stock 350 test bike at Glen Helen went 1-1, 2 times against modified MX bikes. https://thumpertalk.com/topic/1078322-beta-in-racing/page-7 https://thumpertalk.com/topic/997549-beta-mx/page-6

 

Beta's are doing fine in Hare and Hound as stated.

 

World Enduro Johnny Aubert finished the season in 3rd. Sherco was 4th with Oriol Mena.

 

Most of us won't be in any Championship results in the Pro class anyway's. So pick what suits you.

Beta 4-strokes do make good race bikes. To me.

Very well put.. I think.. 👍  :ride:

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