This weeks On the Trail Testing looks at some of the products and machines that have etched their way into the hearts of the DB Editors.


Living with the Beta 300RR

We put over 200-hours on our ’20 Beta 300RR. The machine rewarded us with strong performance and handling. We did have a few mechanicals with a broken linkage bolt and a cracked motor mount. At about the halfway point in the year we had Beta fit up their Factory Suspension mods, used an FMF Fatty and a 2.1 Turbine Core muffler and went through several stacks of tires. According to our tester Ryan Koch, basic maintenance was the norm, one piston and one set of clutch plates and brake pads when warranted went into the 300RR.

We had a head snap off of the linkage bolt on the 300.
Ryan tap dances on the Beta 300 early in our testing.

Nihilo lever grips are a rubberized shrink wrap for your machines levers. They not only offer extra grip, they are very nice when the weather gets cold. Why? When you’re constantly working the levers, they actually transfer cold to your fingers! The Nihilo Lever grips offer a barrier and give extra grip when they’re wet.

We really liked the  Shinko 216 MX Fatty-Gummy front tire. The tire features a split tread pattern to help clean itself out in muddy conditions. It is also FIM and DOT approved.  This sticky compound excels in the rocks and roots. You notice this on steep canyons when you’re descending and really relying on the front brake to slow you down. The gummy compound locks into the rocks allowing you to slow down when braking instead of deflecting or sliding all over the place. This also makes for a much plusher ride up front and alot less deflection on trail hack and debris. It took a few minutes to get used to the tire at speed. Coming off of a regular compound tire this may feel a bit squishy and soft when pushed at high speeds.

We’re seeing less and less of our riding compadres toting their own tools and spares during our trail rides. Be self reliant! While Butt Bags are annoying, they are a necessary evil for the competent off-roader. For those who hate wearing a fanny bag, the new hydration systems like the USWE have excellent cargo room that can share the load bearing burden.


Mike Webb transformed his Suzuki RMZ450 into an off-roader just about a year ago. Suspension changes via RG3, exhaust systems from FMF and the biggest update and most crucial modification came in the clutch. The Rekluse Radius CX system turns it into an automatic clutch and a regular unit and critically allows the bike to throttle down, while carry a higher gear WITHOUT flaming out. The is almost a mandatory mod for the off-roader who likes to sashay in tight enduro terrain on a big 4-stroke motocrosser!

Tight and ugly are tamed on the throbbing Suzuki power band with the Rekluse Radius CX clutch.


Brake fade can be an issue if you go too long without changing your brake fluid. The rear brake is very susceptible to over heating because riders tend to drag their brakes. This breaks down the the fluid and once the juice gets cooked, they fade ever quicker. We run some Maxima Racing Brake Fluid into our machines about once a month using a Motion Pro Mini bleeder. There are a number of ways to get this done, the bottom line being to flush out the old and pour in the new. Check out Motion Pro’s ‘how to’ video on getting this done.




Comments are closed.