Do you have a perfect motorcycle in your life? Maybe you have one or more things that you’d like to change if you could—or are planning to change in the future. If you’re thinking really big, perhaps you’re contemplating crafting your own lightweight adventure bike, like Dave over at the Motorcycle Adventure Dirtbike TV (or MADTV) YouTube channel.
To start off his 2023 right, he’s diving right into a brand-new adventure bike build. The base machine is a 2023 Husqvarna FE 501, which is a more than capable dirt and rally machine out of the box. He already knows what he wants to do to make it more in line with what he’s envisioning for a perfect lightweight adventure bike, though—and he’s walking us through some of his thoughts on how to get where he wants to go with this build.
One of the first things to address will be the installation of a tower cluster, which will help rider ergonomics while navigating, as well as improve illumination during late afternoon and evening rides. An extended-range fuel tank that tucks neatly under the shrouds also seems like a no-brainer for improving the range—surely a must on an adventure bike. Keeping the weight relatively light is also imperative, though—so he’s not planning to go too crazy.
How lightweight are we talking? In the end, Dave says that he’s aiming for a bike that weighs approximately 120 kilograms, ready to go—or about 264.5 pounds. That’s next to nothing, particularly for a capable adventure machine. Obviously, the weight will start getting heavier if he loads it up with racks (as he does review at one point) and gear that’s attached to those racks, but keeping the base bike weight low will help to offset those choices, if and when they’re made.
Suspension revision and/or upgrades may also be in order, but Dave says he’s been told by his guy not to think about doing that until he’s done the other mods that he intends to carry out. In addition to extending range, things like a larger fuel tank will change both the weight and the center of gravity on the bike—which are important considerations when doing suspension setup and/or modification. The actual build should start in the second episode of the series, and we look forward to seeing how it turns out.