TE450 Adventure Machine?

Discussion in 'Thumpers' started by geomeo, Nov 17, 2012.

  1. geomeo

    geomeo Adventurer

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    Here is a challenge - What does it take to make the Husky TE450 a good all-round adventure machine.

    What is the right front : rear cog ratio for the road at an average speed of 50mph? (light load of about 200lbs)
    Settings for best reliability on the road? (we are the master and the bike must behave!)
    How to start and keep the engine running in very cold weather? (pretend you left it out one night.)

    Testing this machine in severe Canadian cold weather (-50C worst case) and then drive it (on 80% road & 20% trail) to Death Valley (+100C). Will it survive?

    Thanking you in advance for your Genius. :norton
    #1
  2. AustinJake

    AustinJake TE450-KLE-FXDWG

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    TE450 not really a good choice for adventure bike, although it does carry almost 2 quarts of oil. I was gonna adventure ride my TE 450, but the bike does not meet the criteria, it's a race bike with lights. The trans is more like a 4 speed, the 6 gears are spaced sooo close together, and for racing that's great. I've actually got 11,000 miles on mine in less than 2 years, but to ride it more than an hour at a time on pavement is not fun. The power of the bike shreds tires, I get 500 miles out of a DOT knobby before it turns into a spinning, useless piece of rubber, I push it til 1000 miles but the last 500 are not any fun in the sand and mud.

    The TE 450 is GREAT if you put it in a pickup, haul it to New Mexico or Colorado, and ride from dawn to dusk and always end up at your camp. Great bike for that.

    [​IMG]
    #2
  3. G600

    G600 Been here awhile

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    +1. Jake is 100% right. Race bike with lights. I had the 510 (not 450) but it is basically the same bike. Sold it this summer as it was not good on the blacktop at all. The bike was outstanding at speed in the desert, but not even close to being a dual sport. Husky took out the counterbalancer in 2006, anything newer than a 2005 will vibrate badly on the blacktop. The engine is aggressive and stalls relatively easy. Great when pushed hard, not that good for relaxed trail riding, horrible on the blacktop.

    A KTM RFS would be a better choice, it has super WR gearbox and a smooth engine. Still a poor choice for a ADV bike, it is a racebike after all, but still better. Something like a DRZ400 might be your best choice, they are built to last and won’t require heavy maintenance or regular engine rebuilds when the miles pile up.
    #3
  4. geomeo

    geomeo Adventurer

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    Thank you Jake. If the engine power is matched by the correct set of cogs it may be a possible dual sport. One would also need to modify some other parts so that there is reliability. Selection of tires is also an issue.
    #4
  5. geomeo

    geomeo Adventurer

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    Thank you. Had an F800GS which was great on the road but was very heavy off-road. Fantastic power but heavy to pick up. Given the feedback, an F800GS may have to come back as the dual sport option. Will continue to seek a solution for the TE450 to see is it can be an option even if the off-road aggressiveness is neutered!
    #5
  6. LukasM

    LukasM Long timer

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    You are not understanding what Jake said. Changing the sprockets is not going to change the overall gear spread. This gearing is either going to be shit on the road, or shit off road, you can't have both with a narrow gearbox.

    Why are you so fixed on the TE? There are many better suited bikes for what you are trying to do.
    #6
  7. sanjoh

    sanjoh Purveyor of Light

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    I've changed the cogs on my TE450 and can say that it does not make a good dualsport. 17t in the front, taking off in first gear must use revs to keep from stalling. 55mph still revs the motor, it will do over 100 with the gearing!

    Plus you are going to need to extend the fuel range. Find a different bike or if you could change the trans ratios that might work.
    #7
  8. jessepitt

    jessepitt Ride More

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    Why not a TE 610-630 or other 600cc class dual sport? They are built to fill the roll you are describing.
    #8
  9. TrailPunter

    TrailPunter Adventurer

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    Same here. I really wanted to have one bike do it all. And after having owned the TE250 for several years I thought that the 450 or 510 might just fit the bill. I rode both and figured out very quickly that I really needed (wanted) two bikes. One for trail rides and one for dual sport/ADV rides. The 450 is a great bike. However, the close ratio tranny and lack of counter balancer are the limiting factors. Even geared 15/48 (stock for my 250 is 13/50) you run out of gears very quickly. The 250/450/510 are great trail/race bikes, and I've done several 200 mile days on the 250. My 610 is so much better for longer more casual rides. Having a smooth power band and a wide ratio gearbox makes the ride so much more enjoyable. Good luck with whatever you decide.
    #9
  10. Tachedoutoffroad

    Tachedoutoffroad Mr. Parrish

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    I tired with a SM450 and a TE450 and it just isn't a "dual sport". Its a race bike. It's a race bike. It's a race bike.

    Bigger tank, wider seat, taller overall gear: still a race bike. I took mine on a 5 day trip with a drz, xr, dr, and ttr and honestly wish I had there bikes 95% of the time :eek1 :eek1 the TE just wants to GO. Not cruise.

    AMAZING machines once your are in the nasty twisties or trails, but suck getting there unless Trailering :deal

    The 610s are a blast. Big compared to what you're talking about, but loads of power, 3 gallon tank, easy maintance, and will run down the highway easy if needed too. What any jap 650 wants to be.
    #10
  11. geomeo

    geomeo Adventurer

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    Thank you Lukas. It is looking like two bikes will be needed. One for road and one off. Need to cross ice and snow (with track connected) and then long patches of road. Wanted to see if there was one bike that could do both.
    #11
  12. geomeo

    geomeo Adventurer

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    Yes. It looks like two bikes will be required. Thank you for you help.
    #12
  13. geomeo

    geomeo Adventurer

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    Was looking for light weight for 'snow bike' work that could also go some distance on the road. The consensus seems that two bikes will be required.
    #13
  14. geomeo

    geomeo Adventurer

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    Two bikes appear to be the best solution.... how many 200 mile days in succession did you do or would be possible on a 450?
    #14
  15. geomeo

    geomeo Adventurer

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    We assume that this was a 5 day mostly on road trip. What did you do for your cruising fix?:ear
    #15
  16. barnyard

    barnyard Verbal tactician Super Moderator

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    Not many.

    I had a custom seat and a larger tank. Vibrates way too much on road to be comfortable for any length of time. I tried to do the same and sold it. It is a way fun race bike and having a plate to connect trails is nice, but dual sporting it is pushing it to do something that it is not suited to.
    #16
  17. smr238

    smr238 Sam

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    I have a te510 and agree that if you are doing any signifigant streaches of road its not the bike for the job. You may want to look at the wr250r. It will run 60 mph all day, has a balanced engine, and goes 6000k miles between valve adjustments.
    #17
  18. geomeo

    geomeo Adventurer

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    You are correct and Husqvarna should not market it as a DS. With road tires and drive cog 13>15 one could 'cruise' along at 50 mph. But that would be the maximum.
    #18
  19. barnyard

    barnyard Verbal tactician Super Moderator

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    The one I bought came with a set of "road" sprokets and it did 65 mph without too much difficulty. It vibrated like a mofo and the 5 miles of pavement that I did at that speed were enough to tell me, "No more." It was fantastic riding single track though. The narrow range trans meant that there was a gear for about any condition.
    #19
  20. geomeo

    geomeo Adventurer

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    Two bikes are needed for the best experience. That is a light 250 lb bike for the snow and a twin 650-800 for the long haul. You guys have been a great help and a fantastic resource.
    #20