Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  

New bike reliablity issues

Recommended Posts

Hello,

I've been riding and racing for 25 years and lately I have seen a decline in reliabilty in the new generation thumpers. I have raced a Can-Am 560 a half dozen XR's and a 2000 TE410. These bikes were bullet proof compared to what I am seeing of todays machines. I don't want to here dealer hype or magazine editors opinions of bikes beaten half to death by a staff of moto-heads.

What are your opinions of the new generation husky's and their ability to keep me on the trail without rebuilding it like a 125 every 6 harescrambles?

This will hopefully help me decide whether or not I will keep the 410 and update the suspension or buy a new TE.

Thanksin advance,

Michael,

Massillon, Ohio

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have an 04-TE450 around 100 hours. checked valves after every 20-25hrs, only out of specs twice, bike is awsome!:cry:

Kraig

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Gotta agree with you about most new bikes being fragile. It stems from the engineers taking every ounce of weight off and using all the parts made from expensium to compete as racers. Us average guys don't need that but get stuck with the overhaul costs anyway. The new Husky's are cleverly designed and well built and really don't suffer like the jap bikes do. The big deal with all these products are the valves and the Husky design compares with a Honda XR for ease of maintenance. Nobody else gets close in this matter. My TE510 has about 800 miles on it, mostly GP and HS, and it looks and runs like new. Just adjust the valves and keep it clean and oiled and it will last a long time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

so far i've had 1 jap four stroke (blew up) and two euro bikes (ktm sold!) and husqvarna (still have). the euros are way better; the quality has yet to be matched by the big four!! 'just putting renthal bars on just doesn't cut it' :cry::cry:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

i had a CRF250X die on me 4 months ago...it was an 8 month old bike!

no way i would buy a CRF450X..first year bikes are always a handfull.

Both the KTM and the Husky have had 3-4 years to sort out the bugs on the 450's and the 510/525's....so they are ahead on the curve in my books.

The YZ/WR 450 might also be in that league in terms of proving its reliability.

Add in the quality and the value per $ that the euro bikes now offer--the informed decision is KTM and Husky.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The quality of the Husky is phabulous! I have been involved in quite a few KTMs and while they work good when you lay the parts side by side on the bench it is like race engine parts next to industrial stuff. The issue that is there is the valves, I disagree with Huskys desicion to put Ti in Enduro bikes. KTM tried Ti in MX bikes & stainless in Enduro bikes, to make matters worse I think they got hooked up with a very poor quality Ti so now they are all stainless. The change out kit to change to Stainless is in the works but not completed yet as it is going to require a custom made spring retainer. Hopfully they will be available this spring!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a lot to say about this topic and I don't want to offend anyone but I need to vent.. I have owned almost every exotic bike with the exception of VOR.. This list includes but is not limited too (Cannondale e440, ATK605DS, Husky TE250 and 450, KTM 300EXC 400EXC, and 250RFS, TM250, and GasGas EC400FSE, Old CanAm etc..etc..) I have also owned a laundry list of Jap bikes and the XR400R and DRZ400 were awesome.... :cry:

Now.. I agree the old thumpers held up better with less maintenance for example Rotax 605..I just couldn't kill it...

Now that being said... My KTM's have been super reliable and I highly recommend.. The Husky's aren't bad but if something breaks it is expensive.. I am an engineer by degree and trade and I STRONGLY DISAGREE THAT YOU NEED TO TEAR DOWN A BIKE AFTER EVERY RIDE AND RACE... THIS IS RIDICULOUS AND I HAVE SEEN IT POSTED ON HERE.. No engineering team would design for this..To win a race the bike has to finish... or a car to quote Caroll Shelby...

I also feel that for the average rider.. saving a few ounces using soft metals for valves as well as case, cog thickness reductions etc.. only reduces relability.. for race teams maybe but lets face it, less than 1% of us are professional racers and we could do more good by losing a few pounds around the waist and maybe one less Pizza and sixer a week.

I think the key is to do your own work and change oil regularly.. unfortunately, I travel too much to do my own work and get screwed by dealers.

If you are happy with your old thumper and it serves you well.. then stick with it.. put a few bucks in suspension and take the rest you saved and buy the wife a nice rock... She will let you ride more anyway.. You may not be the flashiest rider on the trail but you will make it back to the truck. I like to establish a level of trust with my bikes and I gotta tell you some of the new ones would never gain it. My husky never left me stranded but it does seem to need pampering more than the older thumpers..

Does anyone remember changing oil every ohhh six months or soooo....and never having a problem.. I used to clean an airfilter about twice a summer in the early eighties.. Funny never dropped a valve back then either :cry:

One final note.. I have put some miles on the Fuel Injected GasGas and I am in love.. this bike never skips a beat and the GasGas mechanic said to check valves twice a year as they have NEVER seen a problem.. BUT these bikes are a little heavy.. Again, I can deal with the weight but not the walk back to the truck..

Thanks and there is my 2 cents worth.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am happy trail riding my 92 TE 350,had it for 5years and it is a stone axe.

Other than extras the only money I have spent on it was for gear selector

bits $190 with labour and parts and I could have put up with the job not being done. Thats a 13year old trailbike that gets flogged to death.The build

quality is as tough as teak.Sure I would love THE BUTTON,LESS WEIGHT,

SHARPER STEERING,BETTER SUSPENDION,DID I MEANSION THE BUTTON.

I am content,it would kill me to put a nice new bike through the riding I do,

the first scratch to the plastic on the goat tracks in the Wadigans.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I have a lot to say about this topic and I don't want to offend anyone but I need to vent.. I have owned almost every exotic bike with the exception of VOR.. This list includes but is not limited too (Cannondale e440, ATK605DS, Husky TE250 and 450, KTM 300EXC 400EXC, and 250RFS, TM250, and GasGas EC400FSE, Old CanAm etc..etc..) I have also owned a laundry list of Jap bikes and the XR400R and DRZ400 were awesome.... :cry:

Now.. I agree the old thumpers held up better with less maintenance for example Rotax 605..I just couldn't kill it...

Now that being said... My KTM's have been super reliable and I highly recommend.. The Husky's aren't bad but if something breaks it is expensive.. I am an engineer by degree and trade and I STRONGLY DISAGREE THAT YOU NEED TO TEAR DOWN A BIKE AFTER EVERY RIDE AND RACE... THIS IS RIDICULOUS AND I HAVE SEEN IT POSTED ON HERE.. No engineering team would design for this..To win a race the bike has to finish... or a car to quote Caroll Shelby...

I also feel that for the average rider.. saving a few ounces using soft metals for valves as well as case, cog thickness reductions etc.. only reduces relability.. for race teams maybe but lets face it, less than 1% of us are professional racers and we could do more good by losing a few pounds around the waist and maybe one less Pizza and sixer a week.

I think the key is to do your own work and change oil regularly.. unfortunately, I travel too much to do my own work and get screwed by dealers.

If you are happy with your old thumper and it serves you well.. then stick with it.. put a few bucks in suspension and take the rest you saved and buy the wife a nice rock... She will let you ride more anyway.. You may not be the flashiest rider on the trail but you will make it back to the truck. I like to establish a level of trust with my bikes and I gotta tell you some of the new ones would never gain it. My husky never left me stranded but it does seem to need pampering more than the older thumpers..

Does anyone remember changing oil every ohhh six months or soooo....and never having a problem.. I used to clean an airfilter about twice a summer in the early eighties.. Funny never dropped a valve back then either :cry:

One final note.. I have put some miles on the Fuel Injected GasGas and I am in love.. this bike never skips a beat and the GasGas mechanic said to check valves twice a year as they have NEVER seen a problem.. BUT these bikes are a little heavy.. Again, I can deal with the weight but not the walk back to the truck..

Thanks and there is my 2 cents worth.

Thats more than 2 cents worth, its fact and well stated, this desire for the latest racyest stuff is driving maintence over the edge. I am in love with my new Husky but feel they made a big error fitting Ti valves. To me its just an excuse to see inside, to most its a nighmare.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

just to follow up...its slow here at work 2day...

my only complaint with Husky is the woods/east coast focus they seem to have. As a desert guy i see lots of little examples of that--

the Husky bucks dont include the Baja races,

the aftermarket is woods oriented,

the bikes are incredible--but the narrower tranny ratios, OEM sprockets ratios, and small tanks are just what ya need to win a Michigan HS, not a Nevada BITD, California H and H, or big Baja race.

With the popularity of the Baja's in europe (its a big series over there), faster racing in places like Australia, and the US south west...i cant help but notice a woods focus even though there are a great number of Huskies that rarely hit the mud.

Now thats ok...but it is something related to Ti valves--

IMHO....

If the bikes had a focus on more open terrain--then SS valves might make a lot more sense. I would add to that the SMR bikes-different issues--but same 'fix' -- SS valves.

I doubt the woods/enduro market is really any bigger than the combined desert and SMR market....both of whom need SS valves...

That said the history of Husky racing--the nearness of woods stuff in Europe is undoubtedly going to re-inforce that focus...woods performance....but in the big picture its not rational.

When the needs of SMR and open terrain riders, plus the needs of 'reliable bike' enthusiasts are all calculated--its only a very small minority of Husky racers, and a even smaller over all percentage of Husky riders, who need/desire Ti valves....

In a rational world the bike should come stock with SS valves, with optional Ti race parts, as well as an optional bigger tank.

Fuel injection? Heck yeah. Thats the next big tech change in our little world. My BMW 650 Dakar had it. Awesome set up. Many advantages. With Cannondale and Gas Gas having success--it cant be long before KTM and hopefully Husky go that route. That will keep them one-up on the japs...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I totally agree on the Ti valve issue.There was no need for Ti valves on any of the TE's I guess it was the marketing side that was pushing for them to be on the production bikes.I know for a fact that only in 02 Husky were using Stainless valves on this works bikes.No real explaination was made but it was obviously a reliability issue.

Ti does increase maintenace costs long term as the valves life is only about a 1/5 of the life of a quality stainless valves.

I totally agress the Ti valves should have been a factory upgrade part.

YZF 250 Ti valves are stretch at the end of their life & then break same with KXF & the Husky.

When I need replacement it will be stainless

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I live in Alabama, so the only person I know with a Husky other than myself, is my son. I love Husky bikes, but I have to disagree about the reliability of at least Yamaha. I have definately seen problems with some of the others, but Yamaha is pretty darn bullet proof. My YZ426 will rock your world! Most of my rider friends have YZ/WR's and I don't know a single one that has had the first problem greater than a fouled plug, and we do ride hard. But, we also take very good care of them.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
just to follow up...its slow here at work 2day...

my only complaint with Husky is the woods/east coast focus they seem to have. As a desert guy i see lots of little examples of that--

the Husky bucks dont include the Baja races,

the aftermarket is woods oriented,

the bikes are incredible--but the narrower tranny ratios, OEM sprockets ratios, and small tanks are just what ya need to win a Michigan HS, not a Nevada BITD, California H and H, or big Baja race.

With the popularity of the Baja's in europe (its a big series over there), faster racing in places like Australia, and the US south west...i cant help but notice a woods focus even though there are a great number of Huskies that rarely hit the mud.

Hopefully as Husky gets back on its feet it will expand the model range and bring back the TX for desert guys. I have no concept of how many Huskys are still raced in the desert. If Husky sold a TE/TX 630 (old frame and motor) would people buy it? I would guess George Earl could turn a TE510 into a real desert sled. Even as a east coast guy I appreciate my '01 TE400's long legs when I hit a woods road or big grass track, sorry to see Husky tighten gearbox ratios on new TE's.

Norman

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for all the input, it is greatly appreciated. I really would like a new bike but I think I will be re-valving the suspenders on my '00 410. Suggestions are welcome. I have been shopping around and I agree that spending $6k for something to beat to death gets harder and harder each time. I have been riding for 25 years and have watched inflation and technology wipe out the ability of the financially strapped get good equipment. Maybe I will get lucky and find a not to badly abused used TE. I do all my own work, so labor isn't an issue. Since I retired from racing, it just gets harder to justify.

If you think off-roading is expensive, bicycling has gotten just as bad. The top of the line US made race bicycle will set you back $5,000 and it does not come with a motor. Euro made bikes are up-wards of $8,000. I guess that is why all my race bicycles are purchased used. Replacement chains and tires can cost almost $50 each and one slice will render the tire worthless. Rear sprocket sets are now over $200 for some models. I have friends who have paid $1,600 for a set of wheels that can be wadded up in one fall. Good handle bars are between $75 and $300. That and we wear less protection when we slide down the road. Road-rash stinks big time.

MGorman,

Massillon, Ohio

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Reply with:

Sign in to follow this  

×