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Old 14-01-2017
mr bergman mr bergman is offline
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Beta RR390 or RR480 adventure bike?

Interested in a light weight adventure bike that doubles as a dirt bike? Plenty of enduro bikes can be adapted, my all time favorite was the Husaberg FE570 but sadly it's no longer made. Plenty of good platforms around for this, a lot of guys adapt the WR450F happily, Adam Reimann successfully took a KTM 500EXC all over Europe and down to Egypt.... here's a look at the RR390 and RR480 as likely candidates.

WHY THE RS390 & RS500?
All the Beta four strokes are proving to be very solid reliable bikes but the 390 and 500 tend to be the pick among the Beta thumpers for dual sport or adventure conversions. See Traction eRag's 2017 Beta review... here's a summary:
RR350 short stroke engine, loves to rev, ultra responsive, not much low down grunt.
RR390 longest stroke, super user-friendly, grunty, smooth, an all rounder.
RR430 the enduro weapon winning the european championships.
RR480 the gentle giant, monster talk, less revvy than the 430.

WHAT'S HOT
Stuff that helps:
- lower seat height
- very user-friendly engine and handling characteristics
- very wide ratio gearbox
- double overhead cam engine for smoothness
- fuel injection for altitude or temperature variations
- dual engine and transmission oil providing a higher overall capacity
- long term reliability for the engine and gearbox.

WHAT'S NOT
Stuff that stuffs things up:
- 100 hour plastic oil pump gear life (this really sucks... more below).
- uncomfortable seat
- small fuel tank
- rear subframe too weak for heavy luggage
- weak headlight
- RS500 engine a bit too snappy off idle

FUEL TANK OPTIONS
The IMS 11.7 litre tank for US$290 for around 300km of easy adventure riding.
Apparently IMS now have a 15 litre which is great for anyone wanting even more range. Looks good too as you can still use your radiator shrouds.
An interesting idea is this Behego 'plug & play' rally tank, which actually wraps around the lower half of the engine and could be good if like to keep a low centre of gravity when adventure riding, and just take it off for dirt riding. It comes with its own bashplate.
Clarke Racing do bigger tanks for the pre-fuel injection models.

SEAT, PEGS & ERGONOMICS
Seat Concepts is the most popular choice for Beta riders, starting at US$174. Would love to have tried this but they never answered any of my emails.
A fun budget option to try is buy a block of medium density foam and cut your own comfy seat and staple some vinyl over the top.
Enduro bikes have quite small footpegs, the Beta is no exception. It might be worth looking at the Fastway pegs which provide a bigger platform, and can also be dropped down and back to give you more leg room on the bike.
We've done vids for short rider setup here, and tall rider setup here.

ENGINE
The RR390 has a long stroke engine that loves to lug and has an even more user-friendly nature than the RR480 - if you don't need ridiculous amounts of top end performance this bike is the one. To me, it's what the DRZ400 could be if Suzuki gave the engine is serious makeover.
The RS500 is not a scary bike, and has actually been called the gentle giant by many... monster torque and only goes crazy once you really crank the throttle. However, like most big fuel injected thumpers the throttle response is snappy from idle. I highly recommend the G2 Throttle Tamer for only US$70, it transforms it into a pussycat at small throttle openings.

The benefits of fuel injection are better fuel economy and automatic adjustment to elevation changes. The down side? It could be worth fitting a fuel filter sock in your tank for adventure riding in case you got dirty fuel in remote locations.

While many debate the usefulness of dual engine and transmission oil chambers, it does mean a higher capacity of 1.5 liters overall, and on a very long adventure ride you only need to carry 750ml to do the engine oil at 30 hours, as the lack of clutch slipping should mean the transmission oil will be fine for a lot longer. Logic would suggest you could extend that 30 hour oil change if you aren't pushing the engine hard, but by how much? I'll leave that up to you. Even 30 hours should get you 2000km of dual sport riding before an engine oil change.

The only real drawback with the Beta four stroke engine is the plastic oil pump gears... we are all scratching our heads over why Beta persist with these. These should be replaced every 100 hours, most riders are putting the metal gears from Boano in and then they can forget about them. Dumb dumb dumb.

ADVENTURE KNOBBIES
A huge range of options here, starting with the cheap Dunlop D606 and Pirelli MT21 to all sorts of hybrid and adventure tyres. I was very keen to try Goldentyre's adventure GT723 tyres but it's not in Australia yet. On his around the world tour Lyndon Poskitt has been reporting an incredible 7000km lifespan even with a lot of high speed road work. Instead I opted for a hybrid rear tyre, the Shinko 505 Cheater. Great grip on the road with it's soft compound and close set knob pattern, and seems to be wearing well too.

One thing I would highly recommend on the front is a high profile front tyre. I'm running the Goldentyre GT216 'Fatty' 90/100-21 which adds to already excellent inline stability of the Beta at speed. A lot of guys fit steering dampers to enduro bikes for dual sport riding but I think this tyre is an excellent alternative. For any highway riding, always get your tyres balanced properly, or those rim locks will have you shaking your way down the road.

I'm not sure if TUbliss are legally okay for road use but personally I hate punctures... the TUbliss setup lets you continue riding to your next base, or simply pull out your TUbliss repair kit and plug that hole - two minutes later you are on the road again. Love it.

LUGGAGE
Luggage is always tricky on enduro bikes. That weak rear subframe means you can't hang a lot off the rear. And you don't want to anyway, these bikes are so light they handle very strangely if you don't keep the weight centred.

The budget option? I used to to just strap dry bags to the side of the FE570 which centred the weight nicely and kept it low. Next budget option is something like this Third Gear luggage bag which is only AUD$75 and works great on enduro bikes. Then you get into the good stuff, Kriega, Wolfman, Giant Loop, Nomad Rider.

You can spend a shit load of cash on soft panniers, tank bags, fender bags. The key is keeping that weight centred and ideally, down low. A handy aspect of the Beta is those rear grab rails under the seat which make excellent mounting points for luggage.

There is a rear luggage rack for the Beta from Nomadic at US$170. See pic in the second post. I doubt you could put much weight on it though with that weak subframe.

ELECTRICS
Good news here, the stator is relatively strong for an enduro bike with 200W at 6000rpm so can run things like heated grips without draining the battery. That weak headlight? By enduro standards it is actually quite good, but if you plan on riding at night it will pay to upgrade.

The LED lights have finally come of age, and personally I think it's worth bypassing the HID lights and skip to something the like the Cyclops LED headlight... only US$65 and a ridiculously bright 3600 lumens on high beam that only draws 40W. And you can almost double that for an extra $10. LED light bars have also dropped dramatically in price and could be worth looking at.

DO YOU NEED A CUSH DRIVE HUB?
Do you need a cush drive hub? There are a few cases of KTM enduro bikes eventually wearing the countershaft splines with extended road riding, and by extension the Husaberg FE570s... even with a cush drive hub my FE570 countershaft was looking quite worn by 12000km. I've checked around and there are no known issues with adventurised Betas in this respect... yet. But if you plan on a lot of road miles I would still consider a cush drive hub. Here is my (dodgy and highly suss) reasoning.

Dirt bikes don't have a cush drive hub in the rear wheel. Road bikes typically do, to ensure smooth running and less stress on a gearbox, sprockets, chain and rear tire. My very tentative conclusion? There is probably less need to fit a cush drive hub if:
- your bike is under 600cc
- you don't plan on clocking too many miles on the road
- your bike has a solid gearbox and countershaft
- you don't lug the engine at low revs on the road.

For more info, see this advrider thread.

PROTECTION
This RR480 has all the usual gear you would expect for dirt riding such as handguards. Mostly I use the heavy duty stuff from Force Accessories - radiator guards, bashplate, case saver. For light adventure work this may be overkill, but for long trips it pays to minimise your chances of damaged radiators and engine cases. I particularly like the case saver, just in case that chain snaps then holes your case in the middle of nowhere and the hand guards are great for not worrying about clutch and front brake levers if you drop the bike. Of course you can carry spare levers, but anything that prevents breakages in remote areas is a great idea.

ANYONE GOT FURTHER TIPS?
Got more tips? Post them here and I'll include them in this post for easy reference.
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  #2  
Old 14-01-2017
mr bergman mr bergman is offline
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A few pics from guys over on the advrider forum who have been messing around with similar mods for a while.....


Rudderfeet


Rear luggage rack from Nomadic US$170



The new 4 gallon IMS tank from denketchpel...


Sewerat
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  #3  
Old 14-01-2017
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Nutty Nutty is offline
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Sure. We can't 'got' further tips, we can 'have' them. 'Got' is the past participle in the past tense of the word 'get'. 'Got' cannot be used in the present or future tense.

You do some good articles Mr B but they need be translated into English. The depth of your posts moves beyond the level of the rest of the illiterate Bogans on here, the grammar needs to be at the same level as the technical writing.

Not your fault though, your generation is functionally illiterate due the failings of my generation.

B.O.T.

As much as I love Beta bikes, the general concept of converting Enduro bikes into Adventure bikes is so stupid. They don't have the longevity, oil capacity, cush drives, fuel range, subframe strength, seat comfort, aerodynamics, accessory range, gearbox strength, fuel economy or ergos of a dedicated A-bike.

With so many great A-bikes available at reasonable prices, the cost, hassle, compromises and work required to make any Enduro bike into a half-decent A-bike present as an inane pursuit IMO.
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  #4  
Old 14-01-2017
mr bergman mr bergman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nutty View Post
.... Not your fault though, your generation is functionally illiterate due the failings on my generation.....
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Old 14-01-2017
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threadersmal threadersmal is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mr bergman View Post
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Club Mud#83

1975 XR75 First bike
1988 Husky AE430
2002 VOR 530
2006 Gas Gas 450 FSE
2007 Honda Fireblade 1000RR
2007 Sherco 4.5 Race Replica
2007 KTM 640 Adventurer

Current bikes
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1978 XR75 4.5
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Old 14-01-2017
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threadersmal threadersmal is offline
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Great write up mate

As you know this is what i bought my BETA 480 for so an excellent read mate
5 bananas for you

Mal
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Club Mud#83

1975 XR75 First bike
1988 Husky AE430
2002 VOR 530
2006 Gas Gas 450 FSE
2007 Honda Fireblade 1000RR
2007 Sherco 4.5 Race Replica
2007 KTM 640 Adventurer

Current bikes
2016 Beta 480
1978 XR75 4.5
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  #7  
Old 14-01-2017
mr bergman mr bergman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by threadersmal View Post
...As you know this is what i bought my BETA 480 for so an excellent read mate
5 bananas for you....
thanks mal, potassium intake was low.

every time i mention adapting an enduro bike for dual sport or adventure riding a bunch of guys get their knickers in a knot. i tried to head this off in the video disclaimer, but to no avail.

"...Many say why bother with all of this when bikes like the DRZ400 and WR250R are available - that's fine but some of us want the punch of a serious enduro bike, and are prepared to live with the inevitable compromises of trying to dual sport or adventure ride it too. That should
cover the most common complaints or comments on this topic, but I'm sure you'll come up with more if you work at it lol!"

there will always be those of us with smaller brains who can live with compromises in bike design... and poor syntax, speling errurs, and etymological inconsistencies on forums.

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Old 14-01-2017
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shawbagga shawbagga is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nutty View Post
Sure. We can't 'got' further tips, we can 'have' them. 'Got' is the past participle in the past tense of the word 'get'. 'Got' cannot be used in the present or future tense.

You do some good articles Mr B but they need be translated into English. The depth of your posts moves beyond the level of the rest of the illiterate Bogans on here, the grammar needs to be at the same level as the technical writing.

Not your fault though, your generation is functionally illiterate due the failings on my generation.

B.O.T.

As much as I love Beta bikes, the general concept of converting Enduro bikes into Adventure bikes is so stupid. They don't have the longevity, oil capacity, cush drives, fuel range, subframe strength, seat comfort, aerodynamics, accessory range, gearbox strength, fuel economy or ergos of a dedicated A-bike.

With so many great A-bikes available at reasonable prices, the cost, hassle, compromises and work required to make any Enduro bike into a half-decent A-bike present as an inane pursuit IMO.
The thing is that(unless you're plannin on rackin up 50,000km on an adventurised enduro bike) u cn always revert back to enduro format easily n quickly so u hav the best of both worlds to a certain extent. Can't enduroise a tenere/dr650/klr/Beemer etc. Not very well anyway. I don't even ride/haven't even ridden an adventure bike but to me it would seem easier to do both(enduro n 'light' adventure) types of riding with an enduro based bike rather than a dedicated adventure bike.

I can see sum of the attraction with adv bikes as can jus get on n ride/explore dirt tracks rather than havin to load up n drive first
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Old 14-01-2017
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threadersmal threadersmal is offline
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Yeah the 480 has compromises for sure but i am willing to live with them for a lighter more nimble Adventure style of riding.

Mal
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Sherco 450 Race Replica

http://www.forceaccessories.com.au/

R.I.P Booma

Verbier My Fav destination

Club Mud#83

1975 XR75 First bike
1988 Husky AE430
2002 VOR 530
2006 Gas Gas 450 FSE
2007 Honda Fireblade 1000RR
2007 Sherco 4.5 Race Replica
2007 KTM 640 Adventurer

Current bikes
2016 Beta 480
1978 XR75 4.5
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  #10  
Old 14-01-2017
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BIGBADAL BIGBADAL is offline
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There's two types of adv bikes , one that's capable of highway cruising loaded with big range , multi cylinder .
Or , something that'll do 300ks handle fire trails and single track and a bit of road , single cylinder mid capacity . The ideal adv bikes to me any way .
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