Top-End Swap GasGas 280 & 300

Discussion in 'Trials' started by motobene, Jul 26, 2013.

  1. motobene

    motobene Motoing for 44 years

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    I had the opportunity to swap top ends between an `11 Raga 300 and an `09 TXT 280. I wanted to understand some real world differences and similarities between the 280 and 300-size machines. I was very long on 280 (272cc) machines and wasn't sure if I wanted to switch to a 300.

    I don't really conclude in the document what I prefer. It's more technical in nature. So I'll say it here: I like the wide want-to-use rev range of the 280, but I have noticed the 300 tends to mysteriously shrink obstacle size. I'm starting on my journey with a Raga 300. It's too early to tell what I'd ultimately prefer. Probably both, depending on circumstances. If I had only one to chose from? Stay tuned....

    There's VERY little difference in these bikes, but the particular sum of parts of individual bikes and cylinder diameter is felt. You feel it. The details of why are interesting though. What's marketed and on stickers can be over attributed only to cylinder diameter, however.

    The document link takes you a pdf I created. Inside are pix of the cylinder and piston, plus some ride comparison and other comments. Enjoy.

    https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B9eLpPW6KxzjR2Yyd2dKdmZOSnM/edit?usp=sharing
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  2. laser17

    laser17 Been here awhile

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    Thanks for sharing your findings. Interesting pics on the piston differences. Its nice to see that others like to tinker on perfectly good bikes like I do out of curiosity. Nice!
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  3. thegraydog

    thegraydog 2 wheels X 6 ways

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    On first review: you noted the weight difference to be 13 lb. Thirteen? That's much more than I would have expected....
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  4. lineaway

    lineaway Long timer

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    That`s correct, if you are riding a standard pro it`s a pig compared to a Raga! That is why I keep telling Garrett his bike is still lighter than most Pro`s.
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  5. laser17

    laser17 Been here awhile

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    Hes comparing a econo vs raga. Econo has steel forks, Steel header, Al cases, and heavy wheel set and tires . Few little items too. wavey rotors ect.. Was suprised it all added upto 13 lbs though. Was thinking 8-10.

    GG - ditched the Mg cases on the new factory - so the weight is going back up on the "new raga" by a lb or so. (Mg case were supposed to save 2-3 lbs)
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  6. lineaway

    lineaway Long timer

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    Yes, hate to say the the econo`s kinda junk. Anyone except a newbie is much better off to buy a used bike!
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  7. lineaway

    lineaway Long timer

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    Remember FIM has new weight rules. That is more likely the cause of the Raga going up in weight. It would also be the simplest way to gain weight!
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  8. laser17

    laser17 Been here awhile

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    Im sure the FIM and cost are primary factors. I don't recall the new list price dropping though...Given what others charge to upgrade to Mg cases, I would have LIKED a little price break. Dream on - I know.
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  9. motobene

    motobene Motoing for 44 years

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    I disagree. I rode an Econo in many competitions and I'm no newbie. Mine wasn't 'kinda junk', but rather my favorite trials bike to date, and it was very hard to part with.

    A few small details aren't as good, but in terms of quality mine has been tops. One detail was a balky tranny, but that turned out to be the eccentric adjustment. I got Michelin tires, a very well balanced motor, and that cylinder and piston you see in the doc is A size, which surprised me. My Econo with the Ohlins shock I redesigned was for me a very competitive bike, and in some case the added weight on the rear wheel was a traction advantage.

    All these bikes are individuals to some extent. You can get a sweet Econo and a not-sweet Raga.
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  10. motobene

    motobene Motoing for 44 years

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    Aluminum cases are stiffer and stronger than magnesium. I was 18 years in medical, in lower limb prosthetics. A number of times we tried to use cast magnesium in lieu of cast aluminum in principle structural components to reduce weight, but every time the magnesium parts would not survive fatigue testing.

    About that weight difference, the Mg cases will be 1/3 lighter if cast in the same mold and not thicker here or there to strengthen them. If the cases are only, say, 6 pounds together, then magnesium is only saving you 2 pounds and that's low in the frame, where more weight matters less. Two pounds is a little less than half a tank of fuel.
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  11. motobene

    motobene Motoing for 44 years

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    If it ain't broke improve it is my thinking. People with decades of experience can mess with stuff and have it come back together as good or better, time after time. For me learning and wrenching are as much fun as riding.
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  12. laser17

    laser17 Been here awhile

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    You never know until you try is my motto. Usually around simple things like Jetting, carb types, Custom FWW's ect..
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  13. lineaway

    lineaway Long timer

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    Well one of the riders lurking around here bought an `010 econo and was not a happy camper and I don`t blame him. He had bought at least eight new gasser`s before this and was quite devoted brand wise.
    If you got michelin`s that was a plus, and anything else was grab and go off the shelves.
    By the way Motobene didn`t you ride a two day with us at Los Alamos in the mid nineties?
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  14. Jeff_S2R1K

    Jeff_S2R1K Adventurer

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    Awesome! Thanks for sharing. Stuff like this is what makes this site invaluable.
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  15. motobene

    motobene Motoing for 44 years

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    When you look at the GasGas site and see the pic of the new Econo (I think they call it the Eco), the forks look cheap. Maybe they are not? Mine had the Sachs forks, which are closed-cartridge and better than the Paiolis I had on my earlier 2000s Shercos. My Econo was the 2010 model. It had the elliptical-tube frame which I like because the subframe is more compact and simple. I noticed the components were mostly from 2009, except the frame, which was 2008. The shifter forging looks a little rough, but it hasn't broken. It didn't have a bunch of stickers, but the components have all been typical of any GasGas.

    As for the grab-and-go concept, manufacturing is like that. Part lots get inspect and put into bins. Assembly then is grab and go or they'd not be productive. What's left over in a model year, if parts are changed in color of shape, gets used up by GasGas in these Econo models. There are probably some second-rate components, and maybe some of those end up in Econos and not Ragas?

    In my case I got a good mix of grab and go. An excellently balanced engine and an A cylinder and piston. My Raga, which has the aura of hand-picked components, was fit with an unbalanced crank. Now there's grab and go. {Update: The imbalance problem on the Raga was not from the crank and flywheel, as I put the Raga parts into the Econo engine and it was just as smooth as before. Worn main bearings were the more likely culprit.}

    Yes, I think I rode that NM event on my `89 Fantic when it was ugly (it's pretty now and sitting in storage and for sale). Gosh that was a long time ago. I was having an arm nerve problem at that event and had to tape my hand to the bars or I'd fall off! I was off in Illinois and Michigan for many years thereafter and too far away for NM events.
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  16. lineaway

    lineaway Long timer

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    By the way, someone on trials central posted about a bad batch of mains in the new Raga`s. A handful in the UK. were having issues.
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  17. motobene

    motobene Motoing for 44 years

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    The post was by a young man who said: just to let anyone know - if your thinking off buying a 2013 factory rep raga DONT! they have come with a dodgy batch of main bearings! 5-6 have been recalled in the uk!

    ...to which was replied to by an older person: ...be careful when throwing around aspersions like that. Trials in a small market and you can cost the importers a whole heap of money and find yourself in big trouble. I appreciate you mean well but, unless you are absolutely 100% sure of your facts, it is best to keep them to yourself and not spread them around the internet.

    I plan to be into two motors in a couple of days. I'll certainly be looking at the mains and checking for radial play on the more vibrating `11 Raga. Presently I ascribe the problem to an out-of-balance crank.

    Here is a Nasa document on roller bearings that's interesting:

    http://ntrs.nasa.gov/archive/nasa/casi.ntrs.nasa.gov/20120008557_2012008568.pdf
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  18. lineaway

    lineaway Long timer

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    Oh I realize who said it. But these problems even when known are kept pretty quiet. As an individual, they make you feel like it is an isolated case. It has happened to all the factories thru the years.
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  19. motobene

    motobene Motoing for 44 years

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    I was many years designing, testing and selling lower limb prosthetic medical products internationally. You can test all sorts of ways up to production, and yet there will be some surprises... some learning experiences in the field and things are discovered when product is used in unimaginable ways. Or changes in the supply stream when someone figured we'd save money by changing a key vendor, and those parts start failing.
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  20. laser17

    laser17 Been here awhile

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    Thats a good read - thanks!
    #20