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    ODI Grips Podium Flight MX Handlebars
    It was high time that I did some aesthetic updates to my Gas Gas MC 250, but one area that I could kill two birds with one stone was new handlebars. I was running cross braced handlebars, and since plating my bike, that feature was getting in the way of my handlebar mounted accessories. As an ODI V2 Lock-On Grip user, I saw that they had recently released their Podium Flight MX 1 1/8" handlebars. Being impressed with their grips system, I decided to give their handlebars a shot. ODI Podium Flight MX handlebars are made from seamless, double-butted 2014 T-6 alloy that has been shot peened and anodized for strength. I did some Googling and found that it would take over 60,000 psi to bend this material! I know that all handlebars can fail under certain conditions, but it seems to me that ODI is making the Podium Flight MX handlebars from some tough stuff. The left side of the handlebar is knurled for grip adhesion, and the bend specific color choices are paired up with an oversized high-density handlebar pad and subtle "stealth" 2-toned graphics. Sorry Kawi guys, I didn't see green as a color choice.  As you'd expect, there are laser etched markings for aligning the handlebars and while most wrap around handguards will be compatible, the handlebar ends are not pre-threaded for inserts. But, it wouldn't be hard to tap them. Lastly, there are 9 bends to choose from, including OE spec & signature options.  Because I was comfortable with the feel of my old handlebars, I chose ODI's "CR High" bend in anodized red. Keep in mind that the same bend from different manufacturers can vary, so not a bad idea to compare values. In my case, all values were the same or very close. While I like the handlebar color I chose, I'll note that in some lighting conditions, they can look on the pink side. This might be more noticeable because of my also red plastic handguards that I ended up swapping out. If you're particular about color matches, keep this in mind. ODI Podium Flight Handlebars certainly dressed up my well-used GasGas. Since the Podium Flight MX handlebars do not have a cross brace,  I now have a few inches more wiggle room for getting my switches and mirrors in the best position possible. In talking with the ODI folks, I learned that they intentionally design in extra room for rider controls; exactly what I was looking for. While the handlebar pad offers up good protection, its generous size doesn't allow my aftermarket display to fit 100% square as it did before. But, I also understand that it's tough at best to design for all possible aftermarket parts & accessories. So, more of something to keep in mind depending upon your particular set-up. Now I have the extra room needed for extra switches & controls. Since my bike is plated, I've ridden with the Podium Flight MX handlebars while commuting to work,  on hard enduro mountain single track, and just about everything in between. And, they did everything that I asked without complaint. I didn't notice them being too stiff, too flexy, uncomfortable, or a hindrance in any way. I simply forgot about them when riding and I think that's a good thing. Naturally I didn't launch my bike off a cliff for you to know how tough they are, but I do go down here/there, so time will tell. But, I expect them to take typical hits without issue, they've done that so far, and that's fine with tme. I can report that the handlebar pad mounts securely, having stayed exactly where I installed it.  Pros  Most signature bends are available. Many colors to match your bike. High quality finish. Bulletproof construction. Reasonably priced. Cons  Anodized red can look pink. Final Thoughts  I like the ODI Podium Flight MX handlebars. They're made from quality materials, they seemed well screwed together, and not too pricey for a premium MX handlebar. I don't see how you can go wrong here, save them not having the bend or color choice that you want. More @ https://odigrips.com/store/podiumflght-mx-handlebars ODI Podium Flight MX Handlebars, ready for battle!
    Posted by Bryan Bosch on Jun 22, 2018

    Pro Moto Billet Kickstand
    There are a couple positives to using a triangle side stand.  One, it’s never in the way when riding.  Two, you can use the excuse, “I can’t find a prop tree!” to avoid helping dig your riding buddy’s bike out of the mud.   As a woods rider, there's been plenty of times that I wished I had a kickstand, so over the past couple of months I've been testing a Fastway Kickstand by Pro Moto Billet (PMB). Installation was straight forward on my YZ250F.  Just be careful not to strip the shallow torx heads on the OEM T50 bolts when removing the footpeg mount. Heat is suggested if necessary.  The kickstand mounting bracket gets sandwiched between the frame and foot peg, so 6mm longer bolts are included. Fastway Kickstands are make/model specific, available for most MX motorcycles from the big 5 within the last 20 years.  Several enduro models are also covered, but are more hit and miss.  As a make/model specific part, the contour of the kickstand matches the bike's profile to a tee.  Swinging the kickstand up tucks it neatly away behind the side panel.  It has adequate clearance to all surrounding components and is well protected in case of a crash.  Transitioning the stand between up and down while seated on the bike is possible after you get the technique down.  My only complaint is that once you get the kickstand over center, it has the tendency to swing into the up/down stop somewhat hard and bounce several times.  As tempting as it may be, Fastway doesn't recommend using the kickstand as a starting stand or while sitting on the motorcycle, something I adhered to during my review. When riding, the kickstand does exactly what it should (stays out of the way).  There are no areas of the kickstand that will snag brush or hinder rider movements.  The 6mm that the mounting bracket shifted the foot peg out was imperceivable.  The 1lb. 7.5oz of added weight was also not noticed.  For those typically riding in wet conditions, the kickstand mount does provide a new surface for mud to accumulate, but it never caused any issues. The stiff internal spring holds the kickstand in the up position in all riding conditions.  Even on the biggest flat landings that I could stomach, bystanders confirmed the kickstand stayed completely up and did not budge.   I was amazed at where I could park my bike without concern for tipovers.  I've had bikes with OE kickstand that didn't provide as much stability as the Fastway kickstand. The combination of the footpad size and bike lean angle allowed me to park in soft sections of the trail that included mud, loam, and seemingly bottomless sand sections. And, I wasn't cognitively trying to find the ideal spot to park. I’ve been beating on this kickstand the last few months and it’s held up well.  The footpad shows minimal wear with just a few scratches from normal use. Despite all mud and sand that I've managed to work into the kickstand pivot, while there is minor scratching, the kickstand level still swing freely. The only real visible wear is from all the hits from the kickstand bouncing into its endstops.  The rubber bumper is starting to wear and it’s also deforming the mount ever so slightly.  PMB does note to “carefully position kickstand up and down”, but this is not easily possible without using your hand.   Overall, I am extremely happy with my Fastway kickstand.  It’s completely invisible to me when riding, it allows me to stop nearly anywhere I want when out on the trails, and it holds my bike up securely. While some wear is visible, I don't think it will cause any long-term negative consequences. Pricing varies depending on the applications, but it will typically have an MSRP of around $160 UDS. More on the Pro Moto Billet website.
    Posted by Bryan Bosch on Dec 17, 2013

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