BY CARSON BROWN
My JMC BBR Husky pit bike has well over 300 hours of fabrication into it. It is one of those projects I had been wanting to do for a while now but havn’t really had the chance till now. A complete one-off, hand built, no spare parts bike that we didn’t have to spend months tooling to produce. BBR has always focused on following the Mini Moto Vegas rules on their high-end pit bike builds, which led BBR to many pit bike championships on our BBR V3 race bikes. Since Mini Moto in Las Vegas has dried up, we no longer had a set of rules to keep the bikes small and slow, so it was time to let loose! Some of the Mini Moto rules I especially wanted to break were the ones that limited lengthening the wheelbase and ride height. Those two limitations are what separate how fast you can make a pit bike go.
Without any national pit bike races on the schedule, the rules about lengthening the frame and swingarm have gone away (for now). So on the JMC BBR Husqvarna 190, we lengthened the frame by 1 inch and the swingarm by 2 inches over our original BBR V3 race bikes. Usually, I prefer chromoly steel frames on my Supercross and National bikes, because they are more forgiving and a lot less picky from track to track, but with pit bikes, you need them to be as stiff as possible since you can’t use a frame cradle, thus the hand-built aluminum frame. We also lowered the titanium Motostuff footpegs 1 inch to open up the cockpit so that the bike would ride much more like a big bike.
As for the powerplant, we went with a Japanese-built Daytona Anima 190cc engine that we ported and tuned to my liking. We mated the four-stroke engine with a 30mm D-slide Keihin carburetor. The Daytona 190cc engine is popular in the mini-bike world. BBR got to help give input and develop it in the early stages and worked towards a fast high revving type of power output. Plus it is available through a lot of sources like Amazon and Alibaba, and many other small pit bike websites will ship it straight to your door. I like the Daytona engine for two reasons:
(1) The Daytona engine can be purchased for under a grand, which is much less expensive than buying an entire Kawasaki, Yamaha or Honda motorcycle, and then having to modify the bike.
(2) The Daytona Anima 190cc engine produces 20 horsepower, with a power curve reminiscent of a 250 four-stroke engine. This is where the bigger stiffer frame comes in handy. There are builders who get over 30 horsepower out of the Daytona 190cc engines, but because they are still following the frame rules of a non-existent championship, they don’t handle well (and the pumped-up engine becomes unreliable). We wanted a bike that I could be consistent on and could last banging off the rev limiter. The faster the engine is the worse they handle, plus the suspension struggles to keep up.
“MY JMC BBR PIT BIKE IS NEITHER A HUSQVARNA NOR A DAYTONA. IT
IS A BLEND OF PARTS FROM A FEW DIFFERENT BIKES THAT
USE A DAYTONA ENGINE.”
For the suspension, we took Honda CRF150 fork tubes and shortened them. We then slid them into wide, CNC-machined, BBR triple clamps to keep them from flexing. I tend to run really stiff settings. My bikes are so stiff that we have to customize our own valving and springs. As for the shock, we chose to use an Elka shock that we tailored the valving on to match the fork’s valving. This suspension setup allows me to jump all the big-bike jumps without worrying about it being too soft. Plus, I also ran CRF150 axles to stiffen everything up even more.
On the brakes, we got creative. We used Honda CRF150 Nissin brakes, rotors and calipers, but ran Brembo master cylinders to get the supreme pucker power I was used to on my Supercross Husqvarna FC250. Normally, I am a cable guy when it comes to pit bike clutches, but I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to go with the trick Brembo hydraulic clutch and custom slave cylinder.
I need something extremely strong and stiff for the wheels. I trust Pro Wheels to make our custom hubs, spokes and rims. We are close with the owner Gary Carter, and he knows what I put my bikes through.
My JMC BBR pit bike is neither a Husqvarna nor a Daytona. It is a blend of parts from a few different bikes that use a Daytona engine with the majority of parts we build from the ground up at the BBR shop. Since I race for the JMC Husky team in the AMA Supercross and National series, I wanted to make the bike look like a Husky. This was the hardest part of the build. We started with 2020 Husky TC65 plastics and a seat, but we had to fabricate the frame’s mounting points, brackets and layout to accept those parts. People underestimate how hard it is to do this. But, we love it. It is a challenge, and it makes our bikes one of a kind.
I have ridden and tested a lot of different pit bikes in my lifetime—maybe more than anyone else. That makes sense, because my dad owns BBR, so I have had the pit-bike world at my fingertips since the day I was old enough to get on a bike. BBR Motorsports is legendary in the pit-bike world for building over the top bikes that don’t just look good, but win races at the highest level. I don’t say this to brag, but this is by far the fastest and best-handling pit bike I have ever ridden. It’s fun to build one-off bikes with no limits once in a while, but hopefully Mini Moto will come back soon and shrink everything down to real pit bike sizes again. Otherwise, we will all just end up on water cooled 450s!
For more information, go to BBR Motorsports at www.bbrmotorsports.com or (253) 631-8233.