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Setup for sand ?

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Got a 08 KTM 250 XCFW, got out in deep loose sand it did better than my old YX 250 F but still wanted to wander and go wide or wash out in the turns as opposed to knifing in. So some questions for you sand riders and don't tell me its all in the technique, I know about that, Utah's about fifty percent sand. fork height ? I moved it up and down a line or so but not much difference, my way of thinking is if the bike knifes in in turns you to slide the forks down and if its going wide or washing out in turns you need to slide the forks up, I did not go all the way to flush with the triple clamp. Sag set at 100 MM stock springs and I weigh bout 200. and how about this ajustable triple clamp, I assume its set at the most rake out and I assume adjusting it to pull the rake in would make it worse. Last but not least I have a steering damper but have not mounted yet, big difference??

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i can only answer the last question - steering damper - yes, makes a big difference in terms of keeping a chosen line, but that's on a XR650R, don't know how it would affect a 250.

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OK - I will tell you what I know from riding smaller bikes in sand (partucularly soft sand) - I have the same bike as you are riding now - I upgraded from a CRF230, which I had no trouble on in the sand, but I have not had the 250 in the dunes yet.

1st - are you running a paddle? If you are not, you might want to consider it. They sure help the bikes steer and plane. The biggest paddle I have ran is a 8-cup, which is about the biggest the 250 will pull. 6 will be too small - it does not push enough sand.

2nd - are you riding hard enough to plane the sand? If your bike is sinking in, you are not riding fast enough - I hate to say this, but in soft sand speed is your friend (especially with smaller paddles and smaller motors - the big bores move right through it). I could honestly do sharp turns in the sand and did not modify the bike in anyway - I did dump it a few times learning, but sand is soft - get up and try again! 👍

3rd - weight shifting - learned this the hard, sandy way too. Stop trying to steer in the sand - the front tire is unless other than for balance. Well, not completely useless, but really not good for steering. Use your weight to move the bike and add the front tire when you want to sharpen it up, but there is a FINE, SANDY, PAINFUL line between enough and too much.

Other than that it's all technique. :worthy: Get out there and practice and watch other people - ask questions of the people out there and then put what they tell you into practice. I spent a lot of time in the sand (me in the sand that is) while I was learning, but once you get comfortable, you are gonna love it!

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Got a 08 KTM 250 XCFW, got out in deep loose sand it did better than my old YX 250 F but still wanted to wander and go wide or wash out in the turns as opposed to knifing in. So some questions for you sand riders and don't tell me its all in the technique, I know about that, Utah's about fifty percent sand. fork height ? I moved it up and down a line or so but not much difference, my way of thinking is if the bike knifes in in turns you to slide the forks down and if its going wide or washing out in turns you need to slide the forks up, I did not go all the way to flush with the triple clamp. Sag set at 100 MM stock springs and I weigh bout 200. and how about this ajustable triple clamp, I assume its set at the most rake out and I assume adjusting it to pull the rake in would make it worse. Last but not least I have a steering damper but have not mounted yet, big difference??

I don't have much time on a KTM, but the time I do have they feel real light in the front....You don't want a heavy front in sand but I could see how too light would make it wander.

I think you could find what you are looking for by moving your weight forward more than you are used to in sand, and if it gets closer to what you want them adjust the forks up and the sag to get the feeling you like.

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Sand set up

Fork max down on triple clamp not 5mm above like manufacture advise.

Stiffer adjuster on fork 3-5 klicks so front end do not sink.

Rear SAG max limit + slower rebound 3-5 cliks.

Riding style, weight shifting - keep weight on the rear and keep power all the time, grip bike with legs as they steer the bike together with your upper body. I know, easy to say.

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what about tire pressure? I would advise against a paddle unless it was 100% sand. I ride in an area that is 80% sand, and any time you get into rocks/ hard pack it absolutely destroys the paddle. A lot of it might be body technique. How far forward are you sitting on the seat when you are steering wide? The single thing that improved my sand riding was learning to sit as far forward on the seat as possible, right up against the gas cap. At first your front end will want to plow, wash out, and you very well may hate it. But once you get comfortable with it, you cannot believe how much it diminishes your turning radius. The bike goes where you point it, and the front end holds through out the corner.

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i changed my front tire to a dunlop 756 i believe and it stopped washing out on me so much. as for everything else i just left stock. unless you are going to a place like glamis where its all sand you dont need a paddle tire, but if you are going there definatly get one, its so much nicer with a paddle, when i first rode a dirtbike out at glamis it was w/o a paddle and it made me want to quit, then i got a paddle and i dont love anything as much as glamis (except some dirt here and there)

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Try a 756 , front , and a773 on the back , good sand , and med. dirt tires. You`ll have to set your comp. clickers 2 , or more harder , at lest on the forks , and maybe 1 , or 2 no the shock. Forks down in the clamp , and add a little more sag too. If it handle good on med. to hard ground your rebound should be ok , if any thing you may want to soften then , but i would try the what i frist said frist. good luck. Mich. is made of sand.

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