Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Dual Sport First impressions

I spent some time today doing a shake down run on the Dual Sport, I've changes quite a bit on the bike, so I wanted a backup plan if things did not work out, so I loaded up the bike in the back of the truck and headed to Carnegie off road park.
First order of business would be to get acquainted with riding on Trials tires, the low pressure 10psi rear, 13 front, is my starting point.

Tires:   This is a totally different riding style, (think slow is fast) if you spin the tire up the traction disappears quickly, keep the revs under control and their is way more traction than you have ever had before! Picking your line the bike will actualy go their, deep ruts and side hills no longer take control of the bike, it's a nice change, but still one that takes some getting used to. Next I found myself just chugging along in one or two gears up from where I would normally ride all a function of grip and smother power delivery. Finally, the rocks, these tires just grab any and all  edges and slabs and the bike pulls hard, I found my self now looking for these rocks I would otherwise avoid and the bike would just pull through like it was easy.....well I guess it was!
Hill climbs I decided I would scamper up a few steep climbs before leaving and it was fun just picking my way up the hills sorta hoping from one outcropping to the next, it made easy work of the job and after riding back down I was treated by the view of another rider with a completely different approach, as I listen to the screaming whaling coming from his bike as he starts his assent, much faster than I had started he was absolutely flying....until he hit the steeper section that is quite rutted, this is where his bike started blowing huge amounts of dirt back down the hill and he was sent from side to side then off the trail, then nearly at a stop he gains a bit more traction and flys across the trail one last time, where he is finally over the steep section and his motor once again screams, seemingly in calibration of the assent. Wow that was cool, loud, and yes a bit destructive, but so,so entertaining!
I don't this that approach would work with the trials tire, I think it would just spin and spin, yet on the same hill with an easy throttle the assent was quite simple and  traction was quite good, I could pick my line and remain in complete control, I think I like that better!
I will keep working with the tires and learn a smoother way to ride, keeping in mined slower is faster!

Bike: my first impression riding the bike around a few trails is that it feels smaller than the KTM, more compact, maybe narrower than the KTM, the Bars are too far back, but that is adjustable! Need to fix that first.

Hard to see from the top shot but looking below the bar perch is reversed hear bringing the bars forward about 1 1/2" I also moved the bars forward about an inch or so, feels much better standing on the bike!

Power is much smoother than the KTM, it's not nearly as punchy or aggressive of a power band as the KTM, is that good or bad, I'm not sure yet, but as I ride is becomes vary clear their is plenty of power on tap so I'm starting to think this is a good thing!
Breaks are great, I needed to adjust the front break lever I a bit as it was too far out for my two finger breaking, easy to adjust on the fly!
Greasing seems right on with a 15front and 51rear but I have options if this is not ideal.
Suspension, the rear needed a bit more rebound dampening so I ran that up three notches, my need one or two more (11 from bottom) front forks, I'm not sure yet, seems tractable and not bouncing back at me but I'm also getting some hard hits so I need to see if I'm bottoming or there is just a bit too much rebound damping, I will try and sort that out next ride, over all the suspension is good, but needs some tweeting to be great, if I compare this to the KTM, I would say right off the top the KTM has better suspension than the Husqvarna, my 525 is set up a bit like motocross style and it will eat up any whoop you through at it, I don't get that feeling from the Husqvarna, but their is lots of tweeting I can do, so stay tuned, I should also add that the KTM in currant form is a bit too aggressive for trail use, so a compromise needs to be met somewhere I suppose.

Every thing held up well, need to get it home for a few adjustments,
Packed up and ready to go, next trip I think I will just ride it out to the park, hay it's a dual sport!