Husqvarna FC350: Long Term Update #1 | Back End | Bike Reviews
Mat Boyd has to learn to swing the other way with a Husqvarna FC350 between his muscle-bound legs.
While I have ridden and tested many Husqvarnas, I am yet to have one in my shed to live with long-term. So this is a whole new ball game for me, firstly because I have never owned a Husky and, secondly, because I am used to riding 450s and have never stepped back to a 350.
I was excited at the challenge of squeezing my 100kg frame on a 350. I have always been about big bikes and big power but the 350 is quite a small bike.
I have also always been open to a challenge and I was expecting several rides and adjustments before I was comfortable. To my surprise, this bike ticked many boxes for me from the first ride.
It is light, nimble and with 58hp it is far from the slowest bike in the class, even edging out a few 450s. The first thing I noticed was how light the bike felt.
It felt just like throwing around a 250, only with all this extra power. I’ve been ridiculed by some for writing article criticizing the power of 350s but right now I am happy to eat my words and change my opinion.
While the 350 doesn’t have the brute horsepower of the FC450, it has plenty enough to get you out front and is much more rider friendly. I wasn’t expecting to be as impressed by the power of the 350, nor was I expecting the ergos to be so good. The ergos and cockpit are a massive step forward. They are much more comfortable, allow plenty of room to move around and have much more area to grip the bike with your knees than last year.
The seat is super grippy, so much so that I can see it wearing a hole in my pants! While the clutch and brakes are class-leading, as we have come to expect from Brembos.
While the shock impressed me I wasn’t so amazed with the fork. The shock felt a tad on the soft side but it never did anything wrong and actually sat very well over bumps, never stepping a foot out of line.
I did manage to find a few flaws with the front. The initial part of the stroke is quite stiff and jarring. Over small bumps it doesn’t seem to move much and gives a rough ride as well as contributing to a bit of head shake.
Once you get the fork to move it tends to dive or blow right through the stroke and bottom. The spring rate on the front is too light for me from standard and the valving does not feel up to par, so over the next month I am going to work on rectifying this problem and will report back.
In the meantime, I am going to burn some more laps – this thing is so much fun!
Total Hours: 5
Mods this Month: Shorten muffler
Mods next Month: Set up the suspension
Technical Editor Mat Boyd
Published ADB Issue #437