Don't Overlook the GasGas Eco

Discussion in 'Trials' started by motobene, Oct 14, 2013.

  1. motobene

    motobene Motoing for 44 years

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    Is it an Econo or an Eco? The web sites have both names.

    Having been a very happy owner of a 2010 Econo 280, and having had it all apart and seen it was made up of most of the same parts that go into Ragas, if money is the issue and you want a virgin-new bike, please consider the GasGas Eco(no).

    I made a comment in an earlier thread about my concern over the forks, as I saw a photo and said they 'looked cheap.' Actually, they look simple, as there is little sticker bling.

    I saw two Eco(no)s at the Peru, KS event Dale had out for under $5,000. He and others said they ride surprisingly sweet.

    Turns out the R16V steel-tube forks and the R16V shock are made by olle-amortidores.com of Spain. Olle supplied Sherco shocks for years.

    I observed the first-generation 2009 Raga round-tube frame and the 2009/10 sub frame and muffler designs. The sub frame has straight not sunken in sides and is simpler and I like it better than the newer sunken-in one.

    The carb is the same Dell'Orto that has worked so well on my Econo. I saw what looked like the latest-generation aluminum bottom end (same as the Replica) and latest 2013 cylinder, head and radiator. The tube type rear rim is still there, and that works fine. Pirelli tires? That could be a negative. Perhaps these are softer Pirellis? My 2010 Econo came with Michelins.

    Same strong AJP brakes as my Econo and some other brands still use.

    Sorry, I accidentally deleted my photos. Here's what they look like:

    http://www.gasgas.com/2013_econo.htm

    The Ecos lack the gaggle of stickers of the higher models, but at their cores they are simple and solid machines, just as my Econo was for me. Marketing is a very powerful force. It worked on me (too) and now I have a Raga :wink: But my Econo will remain locked in my brain as one of my all-time favorites.
    #1
  2. laser17

    laser17 Been here awhile

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    I think they are a great value as well. $2K saving is alot of $$ for a new rider that wants a new bike over used.

    Im pretty sure they are one of the easier bikes to sticker in Ca. I know Adrian has sold a fair number of them.

    at 1st Econo was GG, ECO was Sherco - now either is used for both. I think the correct name falls into the call me anything - just not late for dinner category. :1drink

    BTW - Sherco uses a R16V Shock on the 13's
    #2
  3. Scubatoe

    Scubatoe Trained monkey

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    Timely post. A riding buddy and i are currently waiting to hear back on an offer on a pair of new 280 Econos.

    These will be our first venture into trials. Any recommendations on mods/accessories? - fork/case/lever guards, etc.

    I'm 205 w/o gear, will the stock suspension make sounds normally only heard in a cross fit gym if i don't respring it? Or can that wait until I possess some higher level trials riding skill?
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  4. laser17

    laser17 Been here awhile

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    Fork and frame guards are a good investment IMO.

    If you find your bottoming the suspension and dragin butt, You can probably just increase the preload on the shock a bit. Dial in about 60-65mm of sag with you on the bike . Im not familiar with the R16v fork - but theres probably a preload adjustment or spacer you can tweak.
    #4
  5. lineaway

    lineaway Long timer

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    You would be far better off buying a clean used `real` pro for the same money. Having a brand new bike is appealing, but three months from now you will also have a used bike with crappy parts. Everyone in our club that have bought one has regretted it.
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  6. Scubatoe

    Scubatoe Trained monkey

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    Are the 2010 frame, suspension, head, carb and rear rim really that bad?

    I figured having the suspension re-sprung and re-valved (if not just flat out replaced) would be a given eventually, anyway.

    I'm in (near) Reno where used bikes hardly ever come up anywhere near, and when they do, seem to be at a much higher premium than out East.
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  7. lineaway

    lineaway Long timer

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    I think I`m being truthful, as the last eco I worked on was a 2010 or 2011. It was a friend that was a faithful gas gas rider. That for years he bought a bike every year. Starting in like `94 and also rode most of the nationals. When the pro came out he started skipping years. 2002, 2004, 2006 and then bought the Eco. Not a happy camper. They are not just left over parts, seems to be a mix of China involved.
    The internet is quite the tool for truth. I worked on his brakes several times for hours. That was before he could ride it. I still do not know what brand they are.
    Like I said used bikes are stupid cheap for a two year old bike. I would be patient and plan a road trip. Just my two cents.
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  8. motobene

    motobene Motoing for 44 years

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    It's not been my experience, but I cannot speak against anyone else's experiences. There may be some crap Econos. Maybe I just got lucky?

    I can take any sow's ear used bike and turn it into a silk purse. But there are guys without the time or skills to do the same, so I thought the opportunity to buy a new bike for less might be a good thing.

    I looked really closely at the 2013 Econos and I just could not see much difference in the core parts, like the engine. And every thing else looked just as quality as most of the higher models. I was surprised to find the same engine components - as far as I could tell, as in the 2013 Pros and even Replicas Dale had side-by-side.
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  9. motobene

    motobene Motoing for 44 years

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    I do agree with this. If you can find that cherry used bike, why not?
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  10. lineaway

    lineaway Long timer

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    Are the 2010 frame, suspension, head, carb and rear rim really that bad?

    If it was just `new` left over parts I would think they would sell out quick. I could easily ride an 2002 pro 280 just as easily as a 2010. The power, weight and brakes are not much different.
    #10
  11. lineaway

    lineaway Long timer

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    Motobene is a great guy and a very solid rider. He is like me and will take his bike and make the most of it. No complaints, just make it work the best it can be and enjoy it. Not all people are this easy to please after seeing what might have been for a few dollars more. Nothing worse than buying a new bike, and all you can think of is that your old one worked better. That is the reality of buying an econo.
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  12. laser17

    laser17 Been here awhile

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    They would probably sell more if the photos of the new 2013 display Econo had a water pump on it. :norton
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  13. lineaway

    lineaway Long timer

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    I did notice that!:D
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  14. thegraydog

    thegraydog 2 wheels X 6 ways

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    Well, not everybody in your club. I'm a member, right?

    My 09 GG econo has been very solid. At sipapu Mitch and his dad got my head spinning with younger ragas and their miraculous suspension, but as I calmed down I have to say that I have come a long way with my current ride, and that other riders can sure do things I can't on it.

    As for comparing '02s with '11s, and how many spokes a Beta had when Jimmy Carter was president, Bob, I am perpetually in awe...:rofl
    #14
  15. Sting32

    Sting32 Trials Evangelist

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    Dammit greyDawg, I thought I had you primed to buy that bike from me, dad has his 13, I have the 12, the 11 is waiting for you to come get it! :rofl

    Seriously, "buy as NEW as you can afford" is the Mantra you have to know that saves many "newbies" from buying something like Lineaway has, A money pit that is 22+ years old, that even if we'd unboxed that 22+ just yesterday (factory new) it would NOT ride like the newly produced/designed bikes. Sure ridable, but hell a honda trail 90 is ridable. Now, what I am saying without any grey area is: IT is TOTALLY different for those that have ridden for years, and wants to have that bike they used to have, compared to a NEWB that wants a bike to start on.

    I love gasgas only probably because for 11 years now, I have learned my way around them, have several hundreds worth of spare parts (dont even start the shit, that nobody else carries spare parts when you travel 800 miles to compete, like I have).

    Buying a beta would mean 80% of the parts I keep "in case" is worthless, so everything I have vested, yeah Ill be gasgas for a while. There for a while, even the footpegs and levers would been worthless, because Beta/montessa never learned how to mount the pegs to the frame, like everyone else:lol3

    I rode new sherco last year, and the OSSA, I like the ossa but have NOT gotten to try the latest "program" though. When I rode the 2012, I gassed the damn thing, and almost went "OVER THE BARS"... yes I mean over the bars! It didn't "GO" like my gasgas would have, that I was bracing for. But the bike was good on a lot of factors, ran like a tractor (good thing IMHO).

    I figure the 300 might be up my alley, I like the idea of FI, so when I get to Sipapau I dont have to mess with carb. I assume I dont anyhow?
    #15
  16. lineaway

    lineaway Long timer

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    Money pit? I`ve got $4.99 from a tube of shoe goo in it!! And it beat a hand full of 2013 bikes that weekend! Ha!
    Seriously were is the link to the 2011 in ADVR classifieds for all the Eco buyers to look at? Wink, wink.
    #16
  17. motobene

    motobene Motoing for 44 years

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    Recall my angst in several threads over thinking I had the perfect bike for me in my 280 Econo and me getting that 'new' 2011? I worked that issue every way I could, and today can conclude the moderate superiority of my very rebuilt `11 Raga. But I will still cry when I deliver the Econo to my next and growing club member this week :cry

    I get so into a ride and get to know it so well (I never stop tweaking all my bikes to make it better - some just go on hold for a while). It feels like a divorce when I change rides. Sounds like you are the same way, lineaway.
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  18. motobene

    motobene Motoing for 44 years

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    I am interested in what sort of problems folks have specifically had with these bikes. Mine was actually my fault.

    I had been out of trials for 6 years before coming back in, and none of my other bikes had what is called "closed cartridge" forks. Well I do my maintenance and pump all the oil out of the Sachs fork cartridges, then re assemble them and add oil. Can't get the cartridge to pump through and in frustration, I just ride the bike. No damping in half the rebound with topping out!

    I groused at the time about cheap forks and such, and saw another rider with Econo make the same mistake. The problem fixed itself as the oil surrounding the cartridge finally purged itself of air in ~12 hours of riding, and I added more oil to get the level right.

    My opinion now of Sachs forks is they are pretty darned good. My opinion about the quality of tech info available for maintaining these and Marzocchi closed cartridge forks is not so high, however.

    I just go around the problem now. I don't move the cartridges in an oil change and just change the oil around them. I do this twice or more depending on how dirty the oil is. Very easy that way. it's like automatic transmissions where you only change part of the oil in an oil change :ear
    and the cleaner oil eventually fully exchanges.

    Oh and what was that other problem? Oh yeah. The shift eccentric needed adjusting, but thereafter she shifts nice.

    My Econo shift lever surface looked like sand cast crap compared to the Raga, but it never broke despite getting wacked several times.

    And not sure what you all mean by Asian parts. I'm going to investigate and see if this a contrived rumor or has some truth.

    Turns one of my favorite non trials bikes, the BMW F650GS with Rotax single, when it became the a black-painted engine G650 has at least the Rotax-design engine made by Kymco. Not sure about the whole thing. Hasn't seemed to hurt it. 'The Asians' have for a long time produced the highest overall build quality motorcycles, though these days the Euros aren't far behind like they used to be. Blame it on the world wide quality revolution.

    And those cheap brakes. Anyone have a photo of cheap parts? My 2010 Econo has the same front brake caliper as comes on the 2013 Ossa, and the rear is the same as my Raga, just not anodized titanium looking. The AJP master cylinders are also the same as my Raga.

    Not fighting for any one brand or model here... just what is really true. And I recognize that is complex as there are many bikes out there and even more experiences. If these things truly aren't worth the money it should and is being discussed openly.
    #18
  19. Twin-shocker

    Twin-shocker Long timer

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    Its a fact of life that a producer who has been teetering on the verge of bankruptcy for several years, is certainly going to be sourcing the cheapest possible parts, which mean reduced unit costs, and increased profits. Its something which is very common nowadays, but not that great for end users, whose bikes are often a lot less durable.
    #19
  20. Gordy

    Gordy Team Listo

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    I have seen two brand new econos from the same shipment sitting side by side with different parts on them. The most obvious was the exhaust. They just slap whatever they have left over and sell you a parts bin bike.

    That is not all that bad (if the parts are up to par) but what frys me is GG is ruining their own re-sale market. It is impossible to sell a two year old Pro, Race or any used bike in the 4-5k range because a guy can get (what they perceive to be) an equal new bike for about the same money. I will never buy another new GG for this reason alone. It should however make for some great deals on two year old Ragas!!

    Just image what the re-sell on a BMW 3 Series would be if they sold an identical looking car with left over parts at 60% of new.

    Hey GG, just make a model run, sell what you can, discount the rest at the end of the year and quit ruining your customer's equity in the bikes that you just sold them! :splat
    #20