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Any way to tame down the xtrainer?

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I have an 18 xtrainer that I’m looking to put my wife on. She’s coming off a klx140g and quickly outgrew it. Only one year of riding. Was going to sell the xtrainer but I think it might be good for her. I’ll definitely have it lowered but want to try to tame it down so she can get used to the power coming off of that KLX. Riding is just casual single track.  Currently the bike is stock with the factory pipe on and the power valve in the stock position. 

Anyway to tame it down even more?

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The problem with the XT for novices is the instant snap of off idle torque, its just about like the RR off idle.  I'm sure the 250XT would be a much better bike for a beginner to gain confidence.  Easy thing to try first is gearing, gear it up a little to slow down the response.  A G2 throttle with a #400 cam would be a good thing as well.   You could also modify the head to drop compression a little.  If your going to keep it for awhile,  try and find a 250 RR top end and work with that. 

Edited by GP
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Change front sprocket to 14
Change rear sprocket to 47

This will raise the final drive ratio (less low down grunt, more comfortable at cruising speed on the road).

Turn power valve in another turn to lessen hit of power valve opening.

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We found the jetting (Suzuki needle) helps a lot with touchy throttle. Added a G2 400 cam and the PV turned in 3.5-4 turns from flush. These changes will make the bike smooth and controllable for a new rider. Add a Rekluse if you want here to focus on riding rather then clutch, fall, clutch,,,, Our XT's gearing I believe is stock and I wouldn't recommend any changes as this will hurt her when she is in tighter trails. Also the bike will be going faster after she gets it moving.

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+1 for the G2 throttle tamer tube with 400 cam.  I put one on my 4T WR250R a few years ago to lessen the off-idle jerkiness inherent to some EFI bikes.  It's fantastic for low speed riding, especially off-idle.  

IMHO there' not much more you can do to tame the engine itself down, as the the PV is already 3.5 turns in in stock position and the Xtrainer already has a tiny expansion chamber for a 300cc engine.  You want to control the power curve, which is done pretty well already, rather than choke it into submission.

I'm with weantright on the gearing.  Taller gears may increase ground speed, but this comes at the expense of more granular control at low speeds.  Especially if she's a bit shy about getting on the throttle off-idle in tight or steep terrain.  Stall outs followed by tip-overs are no fun for new riders still working on developing new skills.  Taller gears and faster ground speed are east to add later when she's more confident on the bike.

Not to beat a dead horse (too much more) but I'd also do something to improve the stock forks if I was going to put my wife on my Xtrainer.  Front wheel deflection and fork dive on braking were barely tolerable by me, and sometimes not at all in more aggressive terrain.  I couldn't imagine putting my wife on them and then expect her to become a better rider by following me around as I ride on a better suspension.  If anything it should be the other way around.  New riders need well-behaved horses, which is pretty much the point of your post.  I really like the feedback I'm reading about AMP's Xtrainer fork upgrades from riders over on the Facebook Xtrainer group.  Also the least expensive valving upgrade I've seen so far.

 

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Does the XT come with the map switch that the RRs have?  If not, I wonder if one could be added?...

I think the map switch makes a nice difference off idle on my 250RR RE, it helps tame it down when you're in the hard stuff.

 

 

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The Beta Power Valve Spring Kit, for about $15, it takes 10 minutes to install and with the stiffest spring really tames the off-idle snap.

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1 hour ago, wwguy said:

+1 for the G2 throttle tamer tube with 400 cam.  I put one on my 4T WR250R a few years ago to lessen the off-idle jerkiness inherent to some EFI bikes.  It's fantastic for low speed riding, especially off-idle.  

IMHO there' not much more you can do to tame the engine itself down, as the the PV is already 3.5 turns in in stock position and the Xtrainer already has a tiny expansion chamber for a 300cc engine.  You want to control the power curve, which is done pretty well already, rather than choke it into submission.

I'm with weantright on the gearing.  Taller gears may increase ground speed, but this comes at the expense of more granular control at low speeds.  Especially if she's a bit shy about getting on the throttle off-idle in tight or steep terrain.  Stall outs followed by tip-overs are no fun for new riders still working on developing new skills.  Taller gears and faster ground speed are east to add later when she's more confident on the bike.

Not to beat a dead horse (too much more) but I'd also do something to improve the stock forks if I was going to put my wife on my Xtrainer.  Front wheel deflection and fork dive on braking were barely tolerable by me, and sometimes not at all in more aggressive terrain.  I couldn't imagine putting my wife on them and then expect her to become a better rider by following me around as I ride on a better suspension.  If anything it should be the other way around.  New riders need well-behaved horses, which is pretty much the point of your post.  I really like the feedback I'm reading about AMP's Xtrainer fork upgrades from riders over on the Facebook Xtrainer group.  Also the least expensive valving upgrade I've seen so far.

 

Stock forks work really well for a beginner that never gets out of first. Front wheel traction is great.

41 minutes ago, ClintMD said:

Does the XT come with the map switch that the RRs have?  If not, I wonder if one could be added?...

I think the map switch makes a nice difference off idle on my 250RR RE, it helps tame it down when you're in the hard stuff.

 

 

You can add a map switch but it will not do much since the stock power isn't there to harness.

39 minutes ago, j_franich said:

The Beta Power Valve Spring Kit, for about $15, it takes 10 minutes to install and with the stiffest spring really tames the off-idle snap.

Just like the map switch I don't think there's more tension you can add to make a change. By turning the stock PV/springs in 4 turns you have no hit until top end.

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You might want to see what happens if you richen the carb pilot circuit a little (turn the screw in) so it doesn't come on so quickly off-idle.  Experiment. Keep an eye on the plug until its no longer necessary. 

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1 hour ago, ClintMD said:

Does the XT come with the map switch that the RRs have?  If not, I wonder if one could be added?...

I think the map switch makes a nice difference off idle on my 250RR RE, it helps tame it down when you're in the hard stuff.

 

 

I've got a '17, and it has a map switch. To the o.p. , I did the G2, 'Zoke needle, p.v. stock(looks to be 4 threads showing) and dropped the rear 1 tooth to 50. Still tons of torque, no stalls, but slightly less aggressive off idle.

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If I'm guessing right and off idle is intimidating, PV adjustments will do nothing as the PV is closed in that range for any adjustment.  You can try removing the PV cover spacer.  The sub chamber is open to the exhaust port area when the main PV flap and subs are closed (work inversely), to add effective header volume, which increases low end.  It may make a subtle difference.  The Beta PV top end is a refined copy of the GasGas design, and we played with cover size/chamber volume on those years ago to alter power.

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I changed the final drive gearing to 14/49. It is far better suited to trail / enduro riding and higher speeds. I've not lost any low down grunt which can't be overcome by a lower gear selection / clutching and never stalls on the tight stuff.

Standard gearing is more suited to very tight trails / trials.

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3 hours ago, ClintMD said:

Does the XT come with the map switch that the RRs have?  If not, I wonder if one could be added?...

I think the map switch makes a nice difference off idle on my 250RR RE, it helps tame it down when you're in the hard stuff.

 

 

Xt is more mellow than the easier map on your re. 

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6 hours ago, MixinGasKickinAss said:

I have an 18 xtrainer that I’m looking to put my wife on. She’s coming off a klx140g and quickly outgrew it. Only one year of riding. Was going to sell the xtrainer but I think it might be good for her. I’ll definitely have it lowered but want to try to tame it down so she can get used to the power coming off of that KLX. Riding is just casual single track.  Currently the bike is stock with the factory pipe on and the power valve in the stock position. 

Anyway to tame it down even more?

In addition to what’s been said already it’s a chance for your wife to ride a gear of 2 higher.  Tell her to just try riding a gear higher than she is used to just to try. She’s growing as a rider so her progress will come when she’s ready of course but once she starts riding in higher gears in lower rpm riding will be easier.  The great thing is you don’t need to change the bike. It’s just a simple technique. 

Edited by hawaiidirtrider
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What will happen if you leave everything as is and don't use 1st gear?  Start moving in 2nd. I bet 2nd gear will be better for her without losing anything.  The XT will ikely be able to handle begginer terrain in 2nd gear just fine. My 6 yo has a crf50.  1st gear is too torquey for her (her head snaps back with acceleration!).  She just uses 2nd gear to start moving, even on a hill.   All better.

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15 minutes ago, G-Berm said:

What will happen if you leave everything as is and don't use 1st gear?  Start moving in 2nd. I bet 2nd gear will be better for her without losing anything.  The XT will ikely be able to handle begginer terrain in 2nd gear just fine. My 6 yo has a crf50.  1st gear is too torquey for her (her head snaps back with acceleration!).  She just uses 2nd gear to start moving, even on a hill.   All better.

She will need good clutch skills for this. We have a recluse and works really well until you realize 4th is too high to start off in!

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I had a G2 Throttle tamer on for a few months , and it definitely takes the low end bite out of the bike. It was REALLY difficult to do a small wheelie. It required a a bit more than 1/2 throttle to get the engine into the power. For low speed trail riding and neutering the power, the throttle tamer Cam4 is the best bet.

I took mine off when I decided I had to have that snap back. No regrets. I would recommend it for any rider new to off road and having a powerful bike they are not used too.

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13 hours ago, ToolmanJohn said:

I had a G2 Throttle tamer on for a few months , and it definitely takes the low end bite out of the bike. It was REALLY difficult to do a small wheelie. It required a a bit more than 1/2 throttle to get the engine into the power. For low speed trail riding and neutering the power, the throttle tamer Cam4 is the best bet.

I took mine off when I decided I had to have that snap back. No regrets. I would recommend it for any rider new to off road and having a powerful bike they are not used too.

No problem at all if you use the clutch like it was meant to be. Several feet leaps are more challenging but wheeling over logs aren't.

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