Going The Simple Path
Story by Brent Farrell, Photos by Trevor Hunter
What It Is
We set out to build a 250 two-stroke off-road race bike with a primary focus on the District 37 Big 6 GP series but we knew there would also be some desert races and probably some track days as well. Our hope was to build the best compromise of everything — the perfect do it all bike. We wanted to start with a Husqvarna due to brand loyalty from riding Husky’s since the early 2000’s, not to mention their cool looks. As a result, we would choose from either Husqvarna’s motocross model (TC) or an enduro model (TE). Did we want to start with the pure motocross focused TC and lean it towards a little more off-road, or use the TE and push it a little towards a track focused set up? The TE has some nice features such as a 6 speed transmission, electric start, larger fuel tank, and an 18 in. rear wheel. Contrarily, the TC is a simple race bike. Maybe it’s because I’m from an era with fewer options and racing a motocross focused bike in off-road was the norm, but starting with the TC250 just felt like the right way to go. Electric start on a four-stroke is a requirement but on a two-stroke, maybe not, at least for some. I like the idea of fewer components, much less wiring, and no battery. Troubleshooting problems is usually pretty easy. If it has fuel and a spark, it’s probably running. You can leave your multimeter at home.
What We Did
Once we decided that the TC was the right platform, it was just a matter of coming up with a plan. We started with the basics. The stock 1.8 gallon tank wouldn’t get us through the longer events so we opted for a 3.6 gal tank from IMS. It was a little more than we need for most events, but the fit is perfect and it doesn’t affect rider position. Also, a wise man once told me that in off-road racing, the only time you can have too much gas is if you’re on fire. Next was the stabilizer. For a motocross bike, the TC is pretty stable but we still prefer the calming effect and confidence that comes with a good stabilizer. We choose the GPR Pro Kit. It includes a new top clamp and positions the stabilizer below the bar with very little effect on overall bar position.
On to the suspension. The stock motocross focused set up would be good for some of our events, but many would include much higher speed sections, not to mention rocks, chop, etc. Some valving changes performed by AHM Factory Services helped make the bike the versatile multi-tasker we were looking for. Last of the necessities was a spark arrestor. We went with the Fastway End Cap fitted on the stock silencer. It’s less expensive than a replacement silencer and has the added benefit of being able to quickly remove the spark arrestor screen when it’s not needed.
Naturally, it’s not just the essentials that make a new bike perfect. Lucky for us, there’s a whole industry of products available to make a bike your own. When you look at performance, ergonomics, or even just aesthetics, the sky and your wallet is the limit. For this area, we looked for items that fit our needs. Our goal was not to create a showcase of all available aftermarket parts or to break the bank on ultra-expensive mods. We wanted to build a great bike that was tailored to our needs, and leave it at that.
In stock trim, the TC runs great but not perfect. We struggled to get the jetting just right so we sent the whole carb to Dick’s Racing based out of Utah. We opted for his Stage 1 Mod which includes the installation of his Torque Wing, a modification to the slide, and some different jets. The result was just what we wanted — perfect jetting. We haven’t touched it since. Next was a couple tweaks to the power delivery. An FMF Fatty Pipe and a Titanium Powercore 2.1 Silencer moved the power up the rpm range a bit and gave us a little more over-rev. The last performance focused change was the addition of a 7 oz clutch mounted flywheel weight from Blais Racing. Some might think that this addition actually slows the bike down, but it really doesn’t. There’s a little smoothing effect that some will appreciate while others will not, but mostly it’s about improving traction.
The last changes we made were for feel and ergonomics. Adding Fasst Company Flexx Bars provides a little give which we feel is a great addition to any bike. Bottom line is we can ride harder and longer with them so they go on most of our bikes. Next was the Fastway Foot Pegs. Not only are they tough as nails and provide excellent traction, but also adjustable and are great for taller riders looking for a little more room between the seat and pegs. The only other change we made was to address the only failure we experienced after spending a year on the bike. We broke two brake return springs. They’re cheap and a quick swap, but still irritating. We solved it by replacing the spring with a Fasst Co. kit that moves the spring to the master cylinder. Problem solved. To wrap up the overall package, we needed some graphics with pre-printed numbers for the series we would be riding and a clean overall look. Megla Designs took care of that.
We took a purpose built motocross race bike and gave it a massage. We softened some edges and added a few offroad focused items and wound up with a very capable machine. We wanted to retain the aggression and simplicity of a pure track focused race bike and just add to it’s capabilities. The results were exactly what we were looking for — a GP focused no nonsense off-road race bike that leans a little towards its motocross roots. And as actual race results, the proof is in the pudding. We captured the District 37 Desert Senior Lightweight Expert Championship and finished 3rd in both the Vet LWT and Senior LWT Expert classes at the Big 6 GP Series. The only question unanswered is would we be just as satisfied if we had started with the enduro bike (TE) and worked in the other direction? We suspect so by using the same types of mods, from a different direction, to arrive at the same place.
IMS 3.6 Gallon Tank – $274.95
Fastway by Pro Moto Billet
Spark Arrestor End Cap – $119.95
Fastway Evolution 4 Foot Pegs – $149.95
AHM Factory Services
Suspension Revalve – $350 + Shock Spring If Needed
Pro Kit – $695.00
FMF Factory Fatty Pipe and Titanium Powercore 2.1 Silencer – $649.98
Dick’s Racing Stage 1 Two-Stroke Carburetor Mod. – $195.00
Flexx Handlebar – $359.99
Rear Brake Return Spring – $19.99
Blais Racing Services
7oz Heavy Flywheel – $59.95
Graphics Kit – $189.95
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