Gas Gas vs. Sherco


22 replies to this topic
  • Thumper33

Posted December 23, 2006 - 11:33 PM

#1

I've really had the bug lately to get a bike again... maybe since I can't ride right now anyway :thumbsup:.

I'm trying not to buy a new bike, so I'm looking at 05 models. I've found a sherco 4.5i for $5000, and a FSE450 for about the same price. The 4.5i is new, the FSE is lightly used.

I've done plenty of research, and from what I've found so far, the sherco seems to be better, but maybe a little more rare and hard to find parts for. It sounds like both companies have good customer service, but neither have a dealer near me... weird since I'm in the biggest city in Colorado. Denver.

Anyway. It'll be 99% offroad mountain rides. Suggestions?

  • Gilkerson

Posted December 24, 2006 - 06:36 AM

#2

My suggestion would be to try your hardest to ride both bikes. The only input I can help with is the GasGas and I've been extremely happy with it. It's a great performer,very reliable and I would buy another one. Good luck.

  • thillsam

Posted December 24, 2006 - 07:54 AM

#3

My suggestion would be to try your hardest to ride both bikes. The only input I can help with is the GasGas and I've been extremely happy with it. It's a great performer,very reliable and I would buy another one. Good luck.



LOL...and I can say the same about the Sherco 4.5i. The bikes both have very different personalities, though, and it's likely that you will be able to choose one over the other after a test ride for sure.

Look for my followup to my original writeup here in the Exotics forum soon...as in we will be doing a bunch of driving the day after x-mas and I will be forced to sit still for long enough to type it all up.

  • Thumper33

Posted December 24, 2006 - 03:11 PM

#4

I don't know how to get on either of these bikes. I'm having a hard enough time finding someone who wants to sell one, let alone let me ride one.

What I was hoping to have someone help me with is describing the difference between the two. Maybe I can say what I had in the past and that would help as well.

My bikes:

-84 CR250
-79 YZ250
-2000 WR400
-2001 DRZ400

I had the two stroke bikes when I lived in the midwest. Moved to the WR when I moved to Denver. I think the WR was my favorite bike. I thought it needed a little more power at times and the DRZ didn't give me that for sure. The DRZ I bought because I heard how nice they were to ride. It was a softer ride, and more forgiving then the WR and I liked that. The main reason I sold my DRZ was that I was sick and tired of fighting with jetting. That's why I'm looking at the bikes I"m looking at now. If I could have that DRZ built with a 500cc engine and EFI, I'd never complain.

I don't think I'm really pickey about my bikes. I've been riding for 8 or 9 years now, but I don't have that much time on the 4-strokes since I've lived in CO. I think I rode the WR 6 or 8 times, and it was always by myself. I rode the DRZ probably twice by myself, and twice with a buddy of mine that now has a quad. He just doen't like to ride with me as much as when I had the quad. I actually had a quad for a while, but I don't really enjoy the quad as much. I guess I'm a bike man at heart, and now finally admitting that.

I need to find a riding club here in Denver, or someone to ride with. One of the reasons I moved to Denver is that I thought it would be a great place to ride. For many different reasons I haven't been able to put as much time into riding... but I've decided that this is the year I'm going to do it right. My first step is to get the right bike. So that's why we're having this conversation now :thumbsup:

I suppose my next post needs to be in the rocky mountain section to find some riding buddies. Anyone in this forum from the Denver area? Send me a PM if you are and don't mind a new riding buddy taggin along.

  • Gilkerson

Posted December 25, 2006 - 11:24 AM

#5

If I could have that DRZ built with a 500cc engine and EFI, I'd never complain.


That's funny, I've read several times that riders who have ridden both the DRZ and GasGas basically think that the GasGas feels like a DRZ modified in almost every way plus the benefits of EFI. I personally was surprised how similar it felt to a Honda450X.

  • hm450

Posted December 25, 2006 - 11:29 AM

#6

If you want to live happy, Go with the Sherco, no doubt about that.

  • Gilkerson

Posted December 25, 2006 - 11:58 AM

#7

If you want to live happy, Go with the Sherco, no doubt about that.


Damn, I thought I was happy, guess not...lol

  • bergerhag

Posted December 25, 2006 - 03:36 PM

#8

A huge difference is the clutch. First time I rode the Sherco, beeing used to twostrokes, the engine braking nearly throwed me over the bars.

The -05 GG came fitted with the APTC clutch, and boy, that clutch is smooth. It gives engine braking just like my old Husky 250-2T.

Are there perhaps a liitle more aftermarket parts available for the Gasser?

  • M.Stone

Posted December 25, 2006 - 04:35 PM

#9

GasGas: DOHC motor
Sherco: SOHC motor

To me, that is a big difference, the DOHC motors have a much wider powerband and you can stay in one gear where the SOHC operators have to upshift and downshift repeatedly.

  • didtza

Posted December 25, 2006 - 05:12 PM

#10

GasGas: DOHC motor
Sherco: SOHC motor

To me, that is a big difference, the DOHC motors have a much wider powerband and you can stay in one gear where the SOHC operators have to upshift and downshift repeatedly.


Excuse the french, but thats a load of C%&kwash. The powerband depends entirely on the flow characteristics of the head and the timing of the cams/cam. A SOHC motor still operates 4valves, it just does it with rocker arms (ala crf).

This can actually lead to a much less compromised powerband because one can have an increasing ratio on the rockers thereby allowing much faster opening and closing times on the cam because the cam doesn't have to supply so much lift.

Dylan

Visit the ThumperTalk Store for the lowest prices on motorcycle / ATV parts and accessories - Guaranteed
  • M.Stone

Posted December 28, 2006 - 06:53 PM

#11

Dylan -

The reason that the DOHC motors tend to have a wider powerband is that they can control the valves more accurately, thereby allowing valve lift and timing strategies which would not be reliable in a SOHC motor.

Around 2000, Dirt Bike magazine did a dynotest in their 8 bike 4-stroke enduro comparison test that was most revealing. All the DOHC motor bikes held their power for 2000-2500 rpm beyond the engine speed at which the SOHC motors signed off. The DOHC motors didn't necessarily make more power than the SOHC motors, the 501 Vertimati SOHC motor having a displacement advantage for instance. But the DOHCs held close to their max power over a much wider rpm range. The difference was night and day.

Although it is rare, DOHC motors can have rocker arms too, like the late model Huskys and the quad cam Fords (Navigator/03-04 Cobra, etc).

Clearly the trend is towards DOHC, as KTM, which had been one of the last hold-outs, is using DOHC in their 250/350, and now in the new 450SX. It is a good bet that where KTM goes, Husaberg and Beta will follow. I guess that will leave the CRFs standing nearly alone in the off-road SOHC corner.

As long as some guy from New Jersey keeps winning national championships on a SOHC motor, it will be perilous to say that SOHC is an inferior design. But perhaps Mike Lafferty deserves even more kudos than he is given.

  • GG116

Posted January 07, 2007 - 01:19 AM

#12

Never ridden a Sherco, but they got rave reviews. By '05, Gas Gas had apparently worked the kinks out of the Marelli EFI...I'm still working the kinks out of my '04 FSE/O.

Save for the occasional crudding up of the idle circuit in the throttle body, which produces an intermittent stalling condition, I love mine. It's a true Enduro, and works great in the sloppy, technical stuff (basically, it compensates for what I lack in riding ability).

If you can, ride both. If you're bent on a real Enduro bike, go European...not a de-tuned Jap motocrosser with a headlight. Nothing against the Jap bikes, I have two Yamahas (2 & 4 Stroke) for GP and desert racing purposes, but the Euro mounts that claim to be enduros, are generally designed and built as enduros from the word go...much less mods are needed to make them do what you want them to do.

In my experience, the Gas Gas is as gentle as an XR200 down low (almost like a trials bike), but has more than enough juice when you put the spurs to her.

I'd also recommend that you check out the Husqvarna line.

Good luck.

SC

  • thillsam

Posted January 07, 2007 - 07:45 PM

#13

GasGas: DOHC motor
Sherco: SOHC motor

To me, that is a big difference, the DOHC motors have a much wider powerband and you can stay in one gear where the SOHC operators have to upshift and downshift repeatedly.


This is absolutely false. Both have a pentroof shaped combustion chamber and very similar bore/stroke ratios. Camshaft profile (and also valve angles, diameters and port shapes/tapers/diameters) has more to do with how the engine breaths and where/how it makes torque than valvetrain layout(SOHC vs DOHC) does, especially on engines with as similar critical dimensions as these two.

Dylan -

The reason that the DOHC motors tend to have a wider powerband is that they can control the valves more accurately, thereby allowing valve lift and timing strategies which would not be reliable in a SOHC motor.


Um, Honda uses a large-diameter(relative to the exhaust cam lobe itself) roller on the exhaust rocker to actuate the valves. It obviously works as well as the DOHC competition as all of the latest 250/450 fourstokes have remarkably similar TORQUE curves....see below...I should also note that the Sherco SOHC arrangement uses rollers on BOTH intake and exhaust rockers that are also very large in diameter relative to the cam lobes.

Why do I mention the rollers? Because they afford cam profiles and lift rates that rival any DOHC shim-and-bucket arrangement out there, if not better. If I can remember I will get some pictures up here later that shows the lobes of the Sherco cam - the ramps of the lobes are actually concave so that the roller climbs them very fast and then holds the valve open wider, longer. The Supermoto racers in Europe LOVE the Sherco motors...it won the French Supermoto championship in 05 and has been very competitive in other competition.

Dylan -
Around 2000, Dirt Bike magazine did a dynotest in their 8 bike 4-stroke enduro comparison test that was most revealing. All the DOHC motor bikes held their power for 2000-2500 rpm beyond the engine speed at which the SOHC motors signed off. The DOHC motors didn't necessarily make more power than the SOHC motors, the 501 Vertimati SOHC motor having a displacement advantage for instance. But the DOHCs held close to their max power over a much wider rpm range. The difference was night and day.


Power means nothing, torque is what we all feel when we twist the grip in any given situation. Furthermore, dyno charts show things at WOT(wide open throttle). Part-throttle and transient throttle torque characterstics are far more critical to most motorcycle and single cylinder applications than WOT behavior in 90% of all riding, street or ditr, trials or trails, track or desert.

Higher torque at a given RPM is a function of volumetric efficiency at that RPM...which is mostly determined by camshaft timing and lift profile, ESPECIALLY in any engine with such large valve area and free-flowing port characteristics as any of the latest-generation of both SOHC and DOHC fourstrokes. This is even more evident on an electronically fuel-injected engine as mixture and transient response can be adjusted so much more accurately than a carbureted engine....

The only real reason valvetrain layout is so different on so many bikes is that they are trying to keep reciprocating and rotating mass to a minimum(also total weight)and still accomplish the same task - opening and closing valves at the right time and rate.

I should also mention that since both have Magnetti-Marelli injection on them, they can be adjusted almost infinitely to behave quite differently from stock...

I should also mention that the Sherco comes with two very different throttle cams that also change the rider's perception of the engines throttle response in any situation quite drastically.

All of that said, there are very few people on the planet that can use and realize the full potential of ANY of the modern 450cc fourstroke powerplants in production today - myself included. How high they rev and make "power" is really irrelevant to 90% of all riders and racers despite what they might think.

  • JRDoz

Posted January 08, 2007 - 03:59 AM

#14

Well said thillsam. I just couldn't be bothered with a reply to M.Stone.
Yes you can get a much greater valve lift with a rocker arm setup anyway, it just isn't needed.

Is there any Data Available to say the Sherco has more torque than the GasGas?

  • thillsam

Posted January 15, 2007 - 02:14 PM

#15

Power means nothing, torque is what we all feel when we twist the grip in any given situation. Furthermore, dyno charts show things at WOT(wide open throttle). Part-throttle and transient throttle torque characterstics are far more critical to most motorcycle and single cylinder applications than WOT behavior in 90% of all riding, street or ditr, trials or trails, track or desert.

.......

This is even more evident on an electronically fuel-injected engine as mixture and transient response can be adjusted so much more accurately than a carbureted engine....


M.Stone, please see the echo to my comments above in a related thread in the link below:

http://www.thumperta...091#post4196091

  • M.Stone

Posted January 15, 2007 - 05:57 PM

#16

Thillsam -

Thanks for your comments. There is certainly more than one way to skin a kitty cat, which is why I pointed out the racing successes of the SOHC-powered KTMs, dispite my contention that DOHC is a superior valvetrain for off-road motorcycles.

When you say "power means nothing, torque is what we all feel...", I believe that you are confusing low/mid rpm power with torque. Low/mid rpm horsepower is critically important to dirt bike performance. Torque is irrelevant to dirtbike performance except as a factor in the development of horsepower. Torque is only a twisting force, and you can have all the torque in the world and not move an inch. Just like putting torque on a tight bolt with a wrench. As soon as there is any movement, whether is at the wrench, at the crankshaft, or at the wheel, that is a function of power.

True, dyno tests only show full throttle/full load power at varying rpms. True, throttle response is critically important to dirt bike performance, particularly under low traction conditions. That is probably why we both love our fuel-injected exotics.

When you say that few riders can use the potential of a 450 and that "how high they rev and make power is irrelevant to 90% of all riders," it sounds like you are misunderstanding my point. My point was not that DOHC motors are more powerful, but that their wider powerband makes them easier to use in the woods by reducing the amount of transmission shifts required to negotiate the terrain.

My experience riding SOHCs and DOHCs in the woods has been that DOHCs are easier to ride because I can often just stay in one gear on a given trail that requires frequent upshifts and downshifts on the SOHC bikes I have ridden. The difference has been quite noticeable to me. The reason I mentioned the dyno test is that when I saw it, it showed me numerical data that echoed a difference I had experienced on the trails.

  • thillsam

Posted January 15, 2007 - 07:18 PM

#17

When you say "power means nothing, torque is what we all feel...", I believe that you are confusing low/mid rpm power with torque. Low/mid rpm horsepower is critically important to dirt bike performance. Torque is irrelevant to dirtbike performance except as a factor in the development of horsepower. Torque is only a twisting force, and you can have all the torque in the world and not move an inch. Just like putting torque on a tight bolt with a wrench. As soon as there is any movement, whether is at the wrench, at the crankshaft, or at the wheel, that is a function of power.


Um, power is computed using torque. If you have more of it at any RPM, you have more power too.

My point is that torque curves are a LOT more indicative of how a person such as yourself would describe the engine's "power" characteristics than WOT horsepower curves are. Torque output and rate of change of torque output for a given throttle input is what we all feel at the seat of the pants as "power," whether you want to admit it or not.

Didn't we just go over the fact that the valve actuation mechanism has very very little to do with how torque is produced? As long as the valves open at the right time and far enough, and close at the right time and rate(and don't bounce on the seat!), the way they open and close is really irrelevant. It's simply coincidence that you have ridden DOHC motors that had valve timing, size and port shape that lent themselves to revving higher and still making useful torque in the upper revs.

A SOHC motor can be made to rev plenty high, as high as any DOHC head design...perhaps you should investigate Ducati's method of desmodromic valve actuation(with rockers, no less!) to see that the only limit to most any fourstroke engine design's redline is usually valve control and lastly burn rate of the combustion process.

  • M.Stone

Posted January 16, 2007 - 05:17 PM

#18

Thillsam -

I am quite familiar with the desmos, having ridden my Ducati 904-powered Gran Canyon 30,000 miles throughout the U.S., Mexico, Guatemala, and Honduras over the past couple of years. Word is that I am one of the few people who can change desmo shims on the rear cylinder of a GC without removing the shock.

But I don't get your point. Are you saying that production SOHC desmos rev and breath like production DOHC motors? Because that just doesn't jive with the facts. I mean, even the $60,000 Ducati 992-powered Bimota Tesi 2D makes its max power at 8000 rpm and redlines at 9000. The Japanese DOHC sportbikes (at one eighth the cost) are making power at 50-60% higher revs than the 992 Ducati/Bimota.

  • JRDoz

Posted January 16, 2007 - 05:52 PM

#19

So what about the CRF450R , is that bike such a slow bike for rpm!!! Not from what I hear......It has a single cam and matches horsepower and rpm with the rest of em Double cam wonders.
I'm sorry M.Stone you need to accept when you are wrong.

  • R Appleton

Posted January 17, 2007 - 02:20 PM

#20

Overall reliability of the Sherco 4.5i, has it been documented, and on the maintinance side, are they really worth it, as I'm very very keen on purchasing a new 07 model but just a little apprehensive because it hard to find articles on them or even people to talk to about the pros and cons of the Sherco 4.5i.........If anyone out there can help with info I would be much appreciative.....Thanks....





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