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September 23rd, 2008, 01:00 PM   #1
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09FE Reliability report from RBR

As most of you know, Shane Cuthbertson rode a 2009 FE450 to 9th overall at this year’s Red Bull Romaniacs. Jag33 and I were there with Shane as his Mechanic/Support Crew. We had the task of keeping the bike in one piece during this very demanding event. The bike was subjected to extensive dirt sawing, being dragged up and down cliffs, and was ridden like a Romanian rental car on the trail. This event is extremely hard on equipment! Over the five days of the rally the bike accumulated nearly 30 hours.

What we learned about the new bike:

-When equipped with a fan, the new bike DOES NOT overheat. During the race, two strokes were filling up with water 3-5 times per day; Shane was adding maybe 300 ml only once a day. The most we ever poured in the bike was 600 ml at the end of day 3. At the end of the other four days we never had to add any water. Why is this....? I see two reasons….1) fuel injection ensures the jetting is always spot on (and we all know how hot an improperly jetted 4T can get). And 2) thanks to a vastly improved cooling system, the rad cap is now a 1.8 bar cap. That means that at sea level the coolant will not boil until around 250*F (120*C). (if my math is right…every 1 psi increase raises the boiling point 3*F).

-bike set-up needs to be approached in a completely different manner than we are all used too. We each have our own preferences on set-up…..realize the 09 is so vastly different from the norm that it must be ridden first before any changes are made. We brought heavier front springs because that is what Shane does to his bikes for various reasons. After riding it for a couple hours we all agree’d the heavier springs would stay in the luggage. With the motor being moved back nearly 6 inches; the front/back suspension bias is much closer to 50/50. The front now carries less of the total weight. What I noticed most about the suspension (both riding and watching) is that the front end wants to stay up in the travel much faster than the old bike (or any other 4T that I’ve been around). This is not to say the rebound is too fast, it’s just that the bike gets back up to proper ride height sooner after hitting a bump. This means the steering angle (and steering effort) is more consistent, especially in tight trees when you’re on and off the gas a lot.

-Yes, all the media reports of the bike being quicker steering are true…very true. What they fail to mention is the bike is also more balanced in the pitch axis (wheelie/stoppie direction). If you need to wheelie over a log, just tug slightly on the bars. You no longer need to make a big power or clutch input to get the front end up. Same goes for jumping on a moto track…the bike is very neutral in the air….very easy to change attitude to/from nose hi/nose lo with body positioning only, instead of stabbing the back brake or blipping the engine.

-working on the bike is still “Husaberg easyâ€
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September 23rd, 2008, 06:06 PM   #2
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RE: 09FE Reliability report from RBR

Thanks for that report Nizzo.it is a real confidence booster for dealers and prospective owners alike when we read how good these new bikes are and so early on aswell.In recent weeks we see that they were realiable in the ISDE,US dealer rep Robbie Jenks wins the Little Burr and now the 'Cord" and Shane Cuthbertson finishes an impressive 9th in Romania...WOW.
I am packing tonite to attend the YMC dealer meeting in Whistler...but all I can think about is when my FE450 demo is going to arrive
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September 24th, 2008, 01:01 AM   #3
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ohhh where do i sign ? ? ?
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September 24th, 2008, 04:52 AM   #4
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Re: 09FE Reliability report from RBR

Originally Posted by nizzo
[...]

-bike set-up needs to be approached in a completely different manner than we are all used too. We each have our own preferences on set-up…..realize the 09 is so vastly different from the norm that it must be ridden first before any changes are made. We brought heavier front springs because that is what Shane does to his bikes for various reasons. After riding it for a couple hours we all agree’d the heavier springs would stay in the luggage
[...]
hi Nizzo … Doru was right with ... "do not change anything"
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September 24th, 2008, 12:41 PM   #5
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He was right! Please thank Doru for the excellent advise. Some things in life are harder to learn on our own....if I had only listened from the start...

Thank you Mototech for all your support and babysitting you did for us CG guys in Romania....the trip was top notch!

Nick
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September 24th, 2008, 04:22 PM   #6
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ahhh

less weight on the front = all things very very good

wheres me 9" angle grinder!
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September 24th, 2008, 07:26 PM   #7
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thanks for the report, very cool reading it. What exactly are you so concerned with when you said this:

-fuel injection brings a new level cleanliness to your routine…this is important! Buy the plastic plug that replaces the air filter when washing the bike.


I wash my 2006 bike and don't protect the filter area, carb intake zone. I just wash it carefully so not to run the water at , near or under the the seat.
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September 24th, 2008, 08:14 PM   #8
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Bigbob,

under the air filter is a direct shot down into the throttle body for dirt to enter.
the fuel injector is super sensitive to dirt. any amount of dirt can cause it to fail and it won't be a cheap fix (like washing out a carb).
also there is an open pipe under there that feeds directly into the crankcase (breather pipe)...it would be pretty easy to push water down the breather pipe and into the engine when washing the bike.

I guess my big fear is the fuel injector failing.

Regards,
Nizzo
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