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Showing content with the highest reputation since 11/04/2006 in all areas

  1. "racing dirtbikes is easy" 👍 "it isn't a workout" "all you have to do is sit and twist"🤣🤣🤣
    113 points
  2. This current fad of people going all ga-ga over KTM motorcyles is hilarious. Over priced, under engineered 'fashion' statement motorcycles are duping people left and right into this fake engineering game. Iv'e seen this same thing before with cars: Mercedes, Audi, Porsche, Maserati, Ferrari, Fiat, Lamborghit, etc, etc. Create a really stunning 'hook' of a machine, that everyone wants to own, then sell enough to figure out how to keep them from blowing up, and falling apart, hopefully by the next model year or two. Oh, don't get me wrong....Mercedes does make some really great cars. But MOST of the cars they make are not so hot. They are poorly designed, over priced, and un-reliable. Same with the other euro manufactuers. Fiat make several really great cars, like the 500. But all the rest are just garbage commerce. This is EXACTLY what KTM is doing. Throw 15 different models on the market, all based on old technology, but with shiny billet parts, or ultra-impressive specs, and see what happens. KTM is providing their customers with sub-standard quality and engineering on dozens of levels, selling it as 'high-tech' and then ignoring all the issues with oil starvation, throttle bodies, frames, triple clamps, shock mounts, CDI's, bars, brakes, rims, hubs, all failing, braking wearing out extremely fast, or in the case of motor internals, make them to such terrible tolerances that you cannot change broken parts with new parts, unless you buy the matching case it was machined to. I have never seen or experienced such CRAP sold as a premium brand in my life, accept Audi in the 90's and Maico in the 80's. I've owned (2) 2012 KTM's that both failed on several levels, that the KTM factory, KTM usa and my dealer could not resolve. I even had KTM USA tell me 'that's just the way it is with new bikes sometimes. We don't have an answer to your problem, sorry". My dealer was so frustrated that they now refuse to work on any KTM that has been modifed in the suspension, electronics, or motor, period, even out of warranty. They also will not replace any internal motor parts below the piston without replacing the entire motor, no exceptions. Yeah I know: ..... " My KTM is great, I've never had a problem with it" . Well good for you. You are in the 50% that actually get a 'good' one. Did you know that until recently (2010) KTM would and did make as many as 6 different gasket sets for one model of motor, depending on what portion of the year it was made? They actually look up gasket kits by serial number, because the factory produced a motor with so many flaws and failures that they had to upgrade the motor in the production line 6 times in one year....rather than just get it right and then push it on the general public. I talked to an KTM partially sponsered Enduro team at a D36 race in 2012 about KTM reliability, and this is what they told me: " Oh, we get 50-75 hours out of the factory motor, no problem. They run great, most of the time. Not quite as long as the Yamaha we used to run, but they are Ok. The real problem comes when we try to rebuild them. We cannot get a rebuilt motor to last 1/2 as long as a new one, because there are so many parts in the KTM motors that are stressed at 100% from day one, that the whole motor, not just the top end, wears out very fast". We try not to rebuild the motors, we just sell off the whole bike and start over with a new one." Hopefully, honest, non-Germanic companies like Beta and Sherco will take some of KTM's market share away. Long die KTM.
    95 points
  3. I need to test something and I need your help. It's simple: just click the "like" on this post. That's all I need you to do. What's in it for you? When you die, you'll receive total consciousness. 👍
    88 points
  4. You need to add one more selection. "I ride with handguards and they have saved me from countless injuries."
    85 points
  5. My FMF pipe ended up with a hole in it. I cleaned it up, cut it up, and mounted it. I used some bull dog clips to hold the pictures. Easy to swap out pics.
    84 points
  6. I couldn't talk her out of it. She went down to the Honda shop and bought a new CRF125F. The last time she rode was at age 60. I made sure we rode the easiest trails I could find. She had fun and luckily didn't crash. Still though, 73?? I doubt I'll be riding at that age.
    71 points
  7. You hang the helmet at the end of each ride then put it back on for the next ride. Not every ride has to be for the championship. You can ride and simply have fun. I still ride nearly every day. It is getting harder to bend to swing my leg over and that will probably be what eventually stops me from riding, actual physical limitations. I do not ride as aggressively as I used to, my crashing days are behind me and that is OK, I enjoy riding a trail, the peace, solitude, sun flickering through the trees, stopping by a river to have a nice lunch. I'm mid 60's. I ride dirt, hit the tracks from to time, both MX and flat track. I ride the street on my super moto. If not being able to go balls to the wall all the time means riding is not your idea of a good time, then it is time to quit. For me, it will be when I simply cannot physically do it.
    69 points
  8. We are going to try to ride Chadwick for the 1st time between Christmas & New Years and are not set up to camp yet. Does anyone know of a motel close to the trails?
    68 points
  9. Glad your alive! But we still need to make a little fun out of it! Recover soon, we need to do more single track up there!
    67 points
  10. again tt pulls through I am ready to leave work right know and go!!! and take off monday 🙂 is there a sound check? how about spark arrester?
    63 points
  11. Ftball, you know I have to post here.... 99 YZ 125, Before After,
    62 points
  12. Is there drool "spooge" running down your silencer at the end of a ride? Does your bike smoke at operating temperature? Do you foul plugs on a regular basis? Is your throttle-response poor and boggy? If you answered "yes" to any, or all of these, your problem likely lies in your carburetor jetting. The first step to jetting is setting the correct float height. Article by: Faded "Here are a few words and some pictures I put together to help eliminate the confusion in setting your float level. Obtaining the correct float level is of the utmost importance as it can affect all jetting circuits. THE FLOAT LEVEL IS THE FIRST STEP TO PROPERLY DIALING IN YOUR JETTING. It should be checked and/or set before you even think about swapping brass. By altering the volume of fuel in the float bowl you can vary your fuel pressure and affect your jetting. More fuel in the float bowl will create more fuel pressure and result in rich(er) running conditions and vice versa. You’ll need to first start off by removing your carb. Be sure to clean the surrounding area to the best of your ability to avoid dirt and debris falling into your carb, or worse, your engine. After you’ve removed your carb I would suggest a thorough cleaning using carb cleaner (or equivalent) and compressed air to ensure that all jets and passageways are spotless. Avoid using wire or other tools to clean orifices of jets; it’s all too easy to alter their original designed dimensions. After your carb is clean you can now set your float level. The picture below will allow you to become familiar with the parts that are responsible for maintaining the correct float level in your carb. There are four basic parts, the floats themselves (part of the float assembly), the float assembly tang, the fuel inlet needle valve, and the fuel inlet valve seat. (Float assembly pivot pin not shown.) It is always a good idea to remove the float assembly pivot pin (already shown removed) and extract the float assembly and the fuel inlet needle. The fuel inlet needle is a wearable part and over time can deteriorate. A worn fuel inlet needle can contribute to an irregular float level. Most fuel inlet needles consist of an internal spring loaded bumper (which contacts the float assembly tang) and a plastic or Viton (rubber) tip. Inspect the fuel inlet needle tip for wear and/or damage. To give you an idea, Eric Gorr recommends replacing the fuel inlet needle/seat assembly every two years. I’ve found that the average cost it around $15 for both parts. (Fuel inlet needle shown with Viton (rubber) tip. The Viton is used to isolate the fuel inlet needle from vibration and to create a better seal against the fuel inlet valve seat.) Now that you’ve made sure you aren’t going to have any issues from worn parts you can reinstall your needle, float assembly and float assembly pivot pin and continue on to set your float level. The float level measurement is taken from the top of the floats (when the carb is positioned upside down) to the gasket surface of the float bowl as illustrated in the next picture. You can use an open-end wrench (sized per your spec), a small metric ruler, or a float level gauge. The tolerance for your float level is usually around +/- 0.50mm. When setting the float level be aware that the spring loaded bumper on the fuel inlet needle valve may have a tendency to compress under the weight of the float assembly which will skew your measurement. Before you obtain your measurement you’ll need to make sure that the float assembly tang just barely makes contact with the spring-loaded bumper. Sometimes it is easier to hold the carb body at a 45-degree angle to avoid compressing the spring in the fuel inlet needle. If you find that your measurement does not match your float level spec then you can carefully bend the float assembly tang to achieve your desired measurement. Be sure to recheck your work, and if you feel confident that your float level is spot on then you can reinstall your carb and get back to riding." END OF ARTICLE Now that you know that you have the correct float height, you can start swapping out brass. Words of Assurance: Jetting isn't hard and comes with practice. You're not going to mess your bike up unless you make huge changes. You WILL be able to tell if your bike is running lean enough to be in danger of seizing. So, don't worry. Article by Spanky: "Throttle Ranges: Pilot Jet/air screw:0-1/4. Needle Jet:1/4-3/4 Main Jet: 3/4-Full open A correctly jetted carb makes a tremendous difference in the torque, midrange pull, top-end pull, and over-rev of your engine. If you have never jetted your bike correctly, you will almost certainly gain some performance at some point in the bike's power band. A cleanly jetted pilot circuit can be the difference between having to clutch the bike out of a turn or not. The needle can make all the difference in the world for the power of the machine in most situations, as it controls the throttle range that most riders spend most of their time using. A correctly sized main jet could mean the difference between being able to rev out high enough to not have to shift one more time at the end of the straight, or the power falling flat on top and requiring you to make that extra shift. The only way to know what jetting changes you will need is by trial-and-error. No one can give you jetting specs, because every bike is different, every rider has a different style, and jetting is totally weather dependent. Jetting is fairly simple, and is a useful skill to learn if you ride a two-stroke and want it to perform at it's best. It's very important that you start with the pilot circuit. The reason is simple. The pilot circuit affects the entire throttle range. When you are at full throttle, the main jet is the primary fuel metering device, but the pilot is still delivering fuel as well, adding to the total amount of fuel that your engine is receiving. Before you start to rejet your bike, you need a clean air filter, a fresh plug (actually you need several plugs to do plug-chop tests for the main jet), and fresh fuel. One important detail: Make sure the engine is in good mechanical condition. If your engine has a worn top-end, fix it first. Trying to jet a worn out engine is a waste of time. The same goes for reeds that don't seal properly, and a silencer that needs re-packing. Before you start the jet testing, Install a fresh plug. Warm the bike completely, and shut it off. As already stated, start with the pilot circuit. Turn the air screw all the way in, then turn it out 1.5 turns to start. Start the engine, and turn the idle screw in until you get a slightly fast idle, or hold the throttle just barely cracked, to keep the engine idling. Turn the airscrew slowly in, and then out, until you find the point where the idle is fastest. Stop there. Do not open the screw any farther, or your throttle response will be flat and mushy, and the bike may even bog. This is only the starting point, we will still have to tune the air screw for the best response. Now is the time to determine if you have the correct pilot installed in your carb. The air screw position determines this for you, making it very simple. If your air screw is less than 1 turn from closed, you need a larger pilot jet. If it is more than 2.5 turns from closed, you need a smaller pilot jet. Once you have determined (and installed it if it's necessary to change it) the correct pilot jet size, and tuned the air screw for the fastest idle, it's time to tune the air screw for the best throttle response. Again, make sure the bike is at full operating temperature. Set the idle back down (the bike should still idle, despite what you read in the Moto Tabloids), and ride the bike, using closed-to-1/4 throttle transitions. Turn the air screw slightly in either direction until you find the point that gives you the best response when cracking the throttle open. Most bikes are sensitive to changes as small as 1/8 of a turn. The air screw is not a set-it-and-leave-it adjustment. You have to constantly re-adjust the air screw to compensate for changing outdoor temps and humidity. An air screw setting that is perfect in the cool morning air will likely be too rich in the heat of the mid-day. Now, it's time to work on the needle. Mark the throttle grip at 1/4 and 3/4 openings. Ride the bike between these two marks. If the bike bogs for a second before responding to throttle, lower the clip (raising the needle) a notch at a time until the engine picks up smoothly. If the bike sputters or sounds rough when giving it throttle, raise the clip (lowering the needle) until it runs cleanly. There isn't really any way to test the needle other than by feel, but it's usually quite obvious when it's right or wrong. Last is the main jet. The main jet affects from 1/2 to full throttle. The easiest way to test it is to do a throttle-chop test. With the bike fully warmed up, find a long straight, and install a fresh plug. Start the engine, and do a full-throttle run down the straight, through all gears. As soon as the bike tops out, pull the clutch in, and kill the engine, coasting to a stop. Remove the plug, and look deep down inside the threads, at the base of the insulator. If it is white or gray, the main is too lean. If it is dark brown or black, the main is too rich. The correct color is a medium-dark mocha brown or tan. Once you have a little bit of experience with jetting changes, and you start to learn the difference in feel between "rich" and "lean", you'll begin to learn, just from the sound of the exhaust and the feel of the power, not only if the bike is running rich or lean, but even which one of the carb circuits is the culprit. Keep in mind, even though this article is intended primarily for two-strokes, four-strokes also need proper jetting to perform right, although they are not quite as fussy as their oil-burning cousins. The only real difference in the two is with the pilot circuit. Two-strokes have an air screw that you screw in to make the jetting richer, and screw out to make the jetting leaner. Four-strokes, on the other hand, have a fuel adjustment screw that you screw in to make the jetting leaner, and out to make it richer." END OF ARTICLE NOTE: REMOVING (leaning) oil from the GAS/OIL mixture makes your AIR/FUEL mixture RICHER, effectively making your engine run RICHER (more smoking/spooge) . If you remove oil from your premix mixture, you have more gas in a specific amount of fuel. Making the mixture that really matters, the air/fuel mixture, richer. Do not fix jetting issues by changing your premix ratio. If you guys like this little article, it would be nice if we could get this stickied in all of the two-stroke forums, to avoid the same questions being asked over and over again. I hope this helps. 👍
    61 points
  13. Hey Has anyone ever rode at the chadwick riding area down by branson mo. If so were the trails more for atv or are they tighter? The website makes it sound awesome!! Would it be worth the 10 hour drive for me? Its cheap enuff $5.00 for park sticker free camping 🙂
    60 points
  14. Chadwick is an AWESOME place to ride. There are tons of narrow trails as well as wide open ones. There have been more ATVs of late, but I've never had any problems. There are 2 camping areas - Camp Ridge and Cobb Ridge. I've never stayed at the Camp Ridge area, just Cobb Ridge. Cobb Ridge has a bunch of new sites added this year. You have to stop a Kaye's store for the day permit (I think they're open 6AM-10PM every day) but you still need to pay for sites at the campground - $5 for no hook-ups, $10 for hookups. There's a drop box at the entrance to the paved camping sites and a board with info on it. I think without a doubt, Chadwick is my favorite place to ride (so far). 🙂
    60 points
  15. Every once in a while one of the guys at work will claim that a Honda is better than a KTM.
    59 points
  16. It seems like the most common jetting issue that comes up are pilot circuit related. The following is a sure method to choose the needed changes. With the bike warm and idling, turn the fuel screw in till the idle drops/misses.then go back out till the idle peaks/smooths. This should happen between 1 and 2.5 turns on a fcr carb and 1 and 3 turns on a CV. If you end up at less than 1 turn, you need a smaller pilot jet. More than 2.5 (or 3 turns on a CV), you need a larger pilot jet. Choose the appropriate size and retest. This post has been promoted to a wiki
    59 points
  17. Just click on my link below for Ozark Mountain Trailriders and then click "Places to Ride" I have scanned in a map if you want to check it out. [ December 13, 2001: Message edited by: MOmilkman ]
    59 points
  18. Chadwick is fairly remote, I've stayed at the Comfort Inn in Ozark a couple of times now. Reasonable, clean & new, plus cold breakfast & coffee included. There may be some places closer, but they'll be "Bates Motel" kinda places and dining is limited. Ozark is back up off Hwy 65 and you can hit Lamberts (they don't serve drinks!, but the food is good) and a ton of other places to eat. If you aren't camping on site and have to load & unload anyway, I'd stay in Ozark.
    58 points
  19. Make no mistake, the scenery in Chadwick is far from plain. You are riding in the Mark Twain National Forest. It is a beutiful wooded area with wood bridges, stream crossings, caves etc. Trails range from easy to extremely challenging (Dairy Queen Hill can humble you) The camp sites just put in are first rate. By the way - get a map at Kays Store when you get your riding permit. Enjoy.
    57 points
  20. I would go buy property to ride the bike I have on 🙂
    56 points
  21. 56 points
  22. Just taking a moment to reflect on my first month at TT and sharing my thoughts for anyone new to the site: 1. KTM is the greatest bike in the world, unless you don't own one. 2. KTM is the biggest joke ever pushed on the American public, and not even half the bike of its Japanese counterparts. Unless you own one. 3.250 two strokes are the biggest, baddest, fastest, scariest bikes in the world. 4. 250 two strokes are the perfect bike for anyone to learn how to ride. 5. Nobody knows what bike they should buy. 6. Everyone knows what bike someone else should buy. 7. Rotella T is created by pixies and gnomes in the gumdrop forest and is the perfect fluid for everything from transmissions to camel backs. 8. What is this "search engine" I keep hearing about? 9. If people used the search engine, then no new people would ever join the site, and shrubitup would have no one to pick on. 10. Everyone loves riding, and loves what they ride. Ride on... Feel free to add to the list for the benefit of those to follow
    56 points
  23. Thing I wanted and or needed in a bike Plate Light weight Six speed E start Lots of aftermarket parts available Warranty Local dealers I looked at all other makes ktm was the only option and after several years I'm still stoked .
    56 points
  24. Hey all, great discussion on this topic and I'm happy to see that it's inspiring spirited debate! This topic is pretty close to my heart as the technology director at Maxima and primary formulator behind the new oils. I'd like to provide a little more info as to why we ran certain tests and why those tests matter. I'd love to hear your thoughts and will be happy to elaborate further and answer any additional questions as I'm able. For my part, I've been working with oil my whole professional career. I graduated from Pitt with degrees in chemistry and biology and went to work at a lube blending plant / refinery (American Refining Group) right out of college. If any of you are also 4-wheel guys you might recognize their former brand name Brad Penn. After that I was a technology manager at Lubrizol, the largest of the big 4 additive companies, where I developed additive packages, specialty chemicals and finished fluids for oil companies. It was at Lubrizol that I began working with Maxima, ultimately joining Maxima a little over three years ago to manage their technology. As a former moto rider, current motorcyclist and all around enthusiast for things that burn fuel and go fast, it was a perfect blend of my professional experience and personal interests. Maxima being located in San Diego had absolutely nothing to do with it... Sorry for the boring intro, but the intent in sharing my background is to add some legitimacy to the message and hopefully offer some assurance that I'm not some snake oil salesman blowing Castor 927-scented smoke back up your respective tailpipes. I'm not a marketing guy or salesman and am legitimately surprised they're letting me speak directly to consumers due to my occasional lack of uh...tact, if you will. So, on to PEAC, "Performance-Enhancing Additive Chemistry", pronounced "peak". I came up with the acronym myself and since I am neither a marketing guy nor especially creative, that's why it's lame. Sorry. Lameness aside, it has real meaning and really does improve performance. It was noted that our primary power gains in the dyno curve are at low to mid engine speeds. This is 100% true and the reason is because the aforementioned additive chemistry reduces friction at those very speeds, the "boundary and mixed lubrication regimes", in nerd-speak. As engine speed increases and/or load decreases, moving out of boundary and mixed friction, additives stop playing much of a role in regard to friction as the hydrodynamic lubrication regime is entered. In this lubrication regime, fluid viscosity is the primary determiner of friction and since both oils were 20W-50s, with nearly identical kinematic viscosity and high-temperature / high-shear (HTHS) viscosity, it makes sense that they start to look more similar as engine speed increases. The only way to see large differences at high engine speeds is to use a thinner fluis, but if we had used a 10W-40, for example, it would have defeated the purpose of the exercise. We wanted to show that if you have a machine that recommends viscosity grade X, the new oil will help facilitate more power output than the previous iteration in the same machine using the same viscosity grade. Factory Kawasaki was kind enough to help us prove that out with dyno testing. The reason we discuss clutch friction and compared with a leading OEM oil is because in most cases when you reduce friction to increase power, some slippage is experienced in the clutch, often to a detrimental degree. We wanted to show that our new oils help increase power while also still helping to facilitate effective power transfer through the clutch. You can have the most powerful engine on earth, but if the output doesn't get to the wheels, it doesn't really matter. For cleanliness, it's a fair argument that it is insignificant if you're changing your oil very frequently, but not everyone does. Also, we had to account for other applications where our oils are used, such as street, that do run much longer drain intervals. The 125cc engine was chosen not to mimic a dirt bike or a road bike, but to provide the most severe conditions possible. Power density (output/displacement) is typically higher with smaller displacement engines and provides the most challenging environment for an oil to maintain cleanliness. Running it for 48 hours at full load and high temperature ages the oil artificially to mimic the cumulative effect of many, many hours of riding. Ester-fortified means that we have selected and included specific esters to do specific things. In the case of Pro Plus, those esters help to improve power. In engine oils, esters are used as base oils, similar to a PAO or a grp II mineral oil. The difference between esters and most other base oils is that esters act more similarly to additives in that they're functionalized, meaning they interact with surfaces. Most other base oils act as carrier fluids and do not have any functionality, while esters add benefits beyond what can be achieved with additive chemistry alone. In this specific case, the esters we use in Pro Plus help to provide that increased power at high engine speeds you can see in the dyno comparison. The esters help to keep friction lower at high engine speeds, where in their absence, these two oils of equivalent viscosity would otherwise have equivalent power output. I'm not aware of any 100% ester 4-stroke engine oils on the market, since esters are like most other things, in that there can be too much of a good thing. Specifically, too much ester can compete with additives like ZDDP, detergents and dispersants, ultimately resulting in a loss of performance. Not to mention that since esters are polar, they can attack elastomers in seal and gasket materials, causing them to degrade prematurely. It's all about balance, using the right components, in the right amounts, for the right application. This response has been a novel and I apologize, but before I stop blabbing I have to address Rotella. With 100% cross-my-heart honesty, I can tell you Rotella is a fantastic oil. I personally know the fine gentleman who created the additive package specific to Rotella and who worked with Shell to develop the finished oils. He's one of the smartest people I know at a company full of very smart people. In retrospect, I have no idea why they hired me. Anyway, as I said, Rotella is an absolutely phenomenal oil...for heavy duty diesel engines. The demands of heavy duty diesel means that Rotella contains a bunch of detergent and subsequent TBN, a ton of dispersant to handle all the soot and contaminants produced from diesel combustion, boatloads of antioxidant due to long drain internals, etc. etc. All of these things are great for just about any engine, but do you need that much detergent or dispersant for a dirt bike or a street bike? You sure do not. "But it's cheaper, so why not?" Because you want to go faster, right? Or heaven forbid, want better fuel economy??? Dispersants and detergents are big, surface-active molecules that create drag and increase friction, reducing power. Diesel oil has tons of both, because it has to, so while it may be cheap, and it will work, and you almost certainly won't have any hardware issues, it's not giving you any more than protection. It's not giving you an edge or an advantage, even a minuscule one, because it's not a racing oil. It's made specifically for a different application, where our oil was designed from the get-go to help maximize power from your machine. I spent the last three years working on these oils and getting them as close to racing perfection as possible, because we're Maxima Racing Oils, not Maxima "Adequate, Cheap and Available at Walmart" Oils. Thanks for hearing me out, assuming you're still awake and I'd love to hear any more feedback, questions or castrations you guys have. I'm quite delicate, so please take it easy. Cheers, Mike
    54 points
  25. Let's put it this way, if you can't drive to Colorado this is the next best thing! Obviously the scenary is not the same, nor is the elevation, BUT it is VERY challenging. The riding is every bit as demanding, probably more in some cases, as Colorado. If you ride hard at all 5 hours of it will kick your a$$ and 2 days of it will have you calling in sick on Monday. 🙂 The area is not HUGE, as in it doesn't really take you way back in the country. It's a LARGE loop of sorts with countless trails inbetween. The outer loop roads are wider & faster and okay for ATV's, the inner trails are narrower and VERY challenging, but still doable on an ATV if the rider has the ability. And then there is some single track, but not a ton. In two days you might, MIGHT be able to ride 80% of it, if you rode hard. The area is extremely rugged & rocky. Step-up ledges are in every climb. Don't bring your new tires here, you'll leave most of the knobs there. I was just there a few weeks ago...fun fun FUN! Makes trail riding around KC a complete bore. Let me know if you decide to go and I'll hook you up with a good map of the area.
    52 points
  26. Please stay out of this forum if you have nothing to contribute or just want to troll. We all choose what we ride for various reasons. If you don't like Chinese motorcycles that's cool, but those that own one don't need your criticisms. Lucky for you, ThumperTalk likely has a forum for you: https://thumpertalk.com/forums/
    51 points
  27. I shared this in team TT. I’m sharing it here in hopes others can appreciate how fast things can change. Always be prepared and stay calm. Nice day for a ride in the Montana back country. Till this... 10 miles from civilization on single track I am suddenly impacting something I have no idea what. When I finally stopped on the ground I knew I took a shot to my shoulder. I thought oh crap I think my collar bone is sticking out. I pulled my helmet off and could see a stick moving with me out of the corner of my eye. My first thought was to stay calm. I started feeling the area and could not find blood. I knew that was a good sign. By now my riding partner had turned around. As he pull up I pointed to my collarbone and watched to se what his eyes did. He’s had EMT training and has been through a friend dieing in his arms. He assessed and explained the situation. We discussed our options and since there was no blood, I was conscious and not dizzy we were getting back on the bikes and headed down the mountain to the dirt rode to get cell service. We ended up at a farm house and they knew who to call. We waited for the ambulance for 20-25 minutes. It was another 45 minutes I. The ambulance to the ER. When I woke up the stick was gone. It went in the left side of my neck down between my esophagus and spine then slightly piercing my right lung. 5” in. I could have easily hit my artery and bleed out there in my friends arms. He DEFINITELY didn’t need that again and I have a second chance. I was in The hospital for 24 hours. Finally! I got real good luck!!! the top of the pine tree pointed at me
    50 points
  28. Hey, this is the place to ride. I am about five miles from th e trails. The trails offer any type of challenge you would want. Let me know when you want to come down and ride. May be able to help out with info if you need..
    50 points
  29. My 11 year old cousin (who absolutely rips on his 85 by the way) had a friend over who watched us ride for a little while then as we were taking a break told us he had a "blue Honda RM 125" that he's really good on. The kid MIGHT be 4'6". And apparently he's been riding this full size bike for "years". When we asked him what color powerband he had in it he said his dad put a purple one in because it wasn't fast enough with the red one.
    49 points
  30. Number 1 item on my bucket list was always to compete and finish a desert race on a bike, so I entered this years Vegas to Reno, the longest off road race in the US. It was 534 miles of the nastiest terrain I have ever ridden. I built my 2012 CRF450X bike up for the race with the help from Johnny Campbell Racing who were more than happy to advise me on how to set the bike up, and all the parts I'll need to buy for it. My goal was to do the race in 14 hours, averaging just under 40 mph. I did it in 24 hours, 42 minutes, 11 seconds. I was physically prepared, been conditioning and training, was in the best physical shape of my life since my teenage years. I was NOT prepared for the mental factor of night racing (I'll get to that later). My only goal was to simply finish the race. If I beat any other riders, then that is just extra credit. The race started in Beatty, NV. First bikes left the line at 545 AM, I left a little bit after 6 AM in the Ironman Amateur class, race number 075. The first 280 miles were an absolute blast to race. Lots of wide open, very fast areas that you can really wind the bike out and hit rolling hills to catch some air off of. Seeing photographers coming up also makes you want to go faster. At 280 miles in we were at pit 8, this was the first time I actually took a break, a breather, got some protein bars in my system. Up until then it was just gas and water at each pit, I didn't want to slow down I was having so much fun. I actually over-hydrated myself and had to piss so bad, but didn't want to stop because everyone was still clustered up early on. So I ended up peeing in my riding gear going about 70 MPH down a dusty road standing up, that was a whole new experience for me. By this point I was feeling good. I had found my groove and was pacing myself to finish in about 16 hours if I could keep going at the same average speeds. This was the pit we also got word that some of the trucks were getting close, Jason Voss was about 30-45 minutes behind us. Voss passed me around race mile 300, and I didn't see another truck or class 1 buggy for at least a half hour, that's how big of a lead that guy had on everyone. My next stop was at pit 10, race mile 334. This was the start of the serious silt beds. As I took off I could hear the thunder from A LOT of trucks and buggies coming up behind me. They were spaced out just enough to where I couldn't ride the silt beds because they would run me over. Their 37" tall tires made ruts so deep in the silt that your handlebars touch the sides of the race course. Myself and 2 other bikes ended up making our own path about 10 feet to the side of the course just so we could continue on. It was that or sit there and wait for 2 hours to let all the trucks go by. Pit 12, 387 miles in, was when the sun went down, and the first real problem with my bike developed. The front forks damn near stopped working, felt like they only had 1 inch of travel. My arms took a beating to the point where I thought they were broken.I tried to get some food in my stomach but I could barely chew it, and it didn't even stay down. Puked it right back up. I knew this was going to be a tough section because I could see the buggies and trucks going slow up the mountain, not to mention it was pitch black. The first 6 miles after pit 12 was an uphill mountain climb of nothing but rocks. Since the trucks had already been through it, it was nothing but whooped out rock sections. It took me an hour to go that 6 miles to the top. I reached pit 13 around 1am, 431 miles in. Baja Pits gave me some popsicles to eat, and it was the most relieving meal I had the whole race. This was the part where the mental factor really took it's toll. I was riding for hours on end in the darkest of night without seeing another racer, either off to the side or someone passing me, and I began hallucinating. Every cactus I saw looked like a person. I constantly thought I saw lights and heard engines coming up behind me. Was looking over my shoulder every 2 minutes, at least. I'd stop, shut the bike off, and realize it was dead silent, not one person was around me for a long distance. This made me right smarter. The fear of getting hurt in the middle of no where and not knowing how long help could be away. Also rabbits and coyotes LOVE LED lights. They run out in the middle of the course, do a 360, then run off the course. There were A LOT that did not make it back to the side of the course. By pit 14, 457 miles in, I was literally blowing bubbles and not making sense when I talked. My hands and arms were damn near completely numb. My chase crew, comprised of my wife and my friend Jeff (Jeff has more experience in Baja and desert racing that almost anyone I know), were talking me up, keeping my head straight. I later found out that they wished I had quit at this point because I was so out of it. They told me after as well that they watched 5 other bikes call it quits at pit 14 as well. My adrenaline was still pumping and I was still going, and still hallucinating. Pit 15, last pit, came and went with a splash of gas and some more water, I was determined to the hit the finish line and ride under the RedBull arch. They warned us the day before that the first and last 20 miles are a shit show, due to being washed out from the rain storms. I didn't think the first 20 were all that bad, the last 20 damn near killed me. It was 20 miles of 1st gear riding through a damn boulder field. I had to stop, look at the rocks and plan a route through them, and it was still pitch black during this. I finally made it through without falling, and met my wife and friend at the finish line. I was so exhausted they had to help me off the bike. I couldn't even take my gear off, they had to do it for me. I was told that I was the last bike on the course, not another bike was left out there. When Casey Folks handed me that finishers pin and congratulated me, I started to tear up, because I now knew I had done what most thought was impossible. I had just finished the longest off road race in the US. I finished 4th in class out of 14 riders (only 4 finished), 73rd for the bikes, quads, UTVs out 126 (only 73 finished). The next bike in front of me finished nearly 7 hours early.
    47 points
  31. Even though our sport isn’t that “old” compared to some others, it has its own share of beliefs, some rooted in truth and some not so much. In this feature we’ll be looking at different things riders and racers say about off-road motorcycling and try to determine whether they are true or false…or maybe somewhere in-between! We sat with a few of our staff and asked them to name a few of the pervasive and persistent beliefs that they felt were indicative of the theme stated above, so lets look at each of them and see what we find out. (Editor’s note: In researching this article, many that were interviewed gave very long technical explanations to our questions. We normally edit these answers for the sake of length and clarity, but in this case we let the responders give longer, technical answers. Part of this is due to reader demand so let us know if this “works” for you, the reader, thanks!) #1 HAULING YOUR BIKE WITH FORKS COMPRESSED BLOWS YOUR SEALS We’ve all seen different and sometime creative ways of transporting off road motorcycles but the ubiquitous tie-down strap arrangement has to be most common. This involves attaching tie-downs to the handlebars and cinching the forks down until they don’t move…there’s no science to how far to pull the forks down and everyone seems to do it a bit differently so right away you have differences in technique and implementation. But is this a good way to blow fork seals? Is this phenomenon fact or myth? Obviously anytime fork seals are under compression they are being stressed, let’s agree on that. But are they stressed enough to help blow the forks seals? We spoke with James Burry of Risk Racing who had this to say: “Your forks and fork seals are designed to take big hits, and therefore a lot of pressure when that happens. Of course that is for short period of time, which they are good at. The issue occurs over time, and is compounded when people over tighten their tie-downs. A new fork seal is soft and will “stretch and flex” with the added pressure, as there are designed to do, but as they age they lose their flexibility and their ability to hold the pressure over long periods of time. Eventually they will leak. It is best to just leave them at rest or reduced pressure during transit if possible.” OK, so keeping them stressed all the time can be an issue…how about using a fork brace that sits between the front tire and underside of the fender? He continued: “The fork brace can help protect your fork seals because it prevents the fork from being over compressed and therefore limits the overall pressure. When the fork brace is squeezed between the fork and the tire, the tire becomes the “flexible” member of the group rather than the suspension. The real benefit to the brace is to prevent the bike from compressing during transit. If you use tie-downs, and are nice to your suspension by not over compressing, then you stand the chance for your suspension to compress further during transit when the vehicle hits a “g-out” style bump. This can compress the suspension more causing the tie-downs to lose tension and possible become disconnected from the bike or vehicle…end result is a bike flopping down the highway. So, the fork brace is easier on fork seals because it allows the user to tightly secure their bike without over-compressing the front suspension, and also prevents the suspension from compressing any further during transit. OK so fork braces are a good accessory to use with tie-down(s) to prevent additional stress on the form seals, except when hitting a large bump which can loosen the whole arrangement. What about the newer stationary systems that attach to the floor of the carrying vehicle and to the footpegs or frame of the bike? Burry continued: “The Lock-N-Load system responds to all concerns when transporting a bike. It reduces pressure on the fork seals, limits the travel of the bikes suspension (and) eliminates the potential for a tie down to break. Of course the trade off is the (expense compared to) a cheap pair of straps.” On this same subject, we had a look at two other factors that may play a role in raising or lowering pressure during transport and we came up with two items to explore: Atmospheric Pressure - In theory, air pressure in your fork tubes stays static if all environmental factors remain identical, but that doesn't happen in the real world. One factor would be the altitude at which you transport the vehicle, because as you increase your height geographically, atmospheric pressure decreases. For example, atmospheric pressure is approx. 14.7 PSI at sea level, but drops drops to about 10 PSI at 10,000 feet... So that means atmospheric pressure increases with decreasing height! So the pressure in your fork tube can rise or fall depending upon your location, but not dramatically at no more than a 5 PSI swing for 10,000 feet. So tie down solutions that exhibit static pressure in the fork tubes can have that value actually increase, causing even more stress on the seals. Air Temperature - It doesn't immediately come to mind when thinking about suspension components except at the pro level, air temperature can also contribute to stress on fork seals when under load as in transporting. Temperature affects air pressure by causing the air to either become more or less dense, which expands or lowers its pressure. Warm air is less dense than cold air, and as air becomes less dense, its pressure increases. Standard rule of thumb for evaluating pressure to air temperature ratio is tire pressure will increase by 1 PSI for every 10 degrees of ambient temperature increase, and this is true in reverse as well. So it's not a huge figure but between it is a contributor to elevated (unexpected) fork pressure. The pressure in your fork tubes can increase as the temperature rises, and this again can cause additional pressure in the fork tubes causing even more stress on the seals. Conclusion: Pressure on fork seals can be high and for long periods of time when transporting a motorcycle using the tie-down method, potentially leading to premature failure, and using a fork brace or stationary transport mechanism can diminish or eliminate this pressure extending the service life of your fork seals. #2 HANDGUARDS CAN BREAK YOUR ARM Riders and racers we spoke to had strong opinions about this statement but lack of real world examples hampered their arguments. First of all let’s define what we mean by handguards…this would be a wrap around metal or plastic “bar” that stretches from the end of the handlebar around the rider’s hands and attaches to the front of the handlebars, creating a loop. This “loop” of metal is the culprit at hand so to speak, in theory and in practice it can create a situation in which your arm can go through the loop and then be at the mercy of anything else that happens. You may leverage your arm and snap it…maybe get your arm caught in there as the bike drags you into an injurious situation - the possibilities are endless when you think about it. But does it happen often? Is this phenomenon fact or myth? Since we didn’t actually know any riders who this has happened to, we searched the Internet for some clues. Many of the responses came from threads just like these: /forums/topic/556585-handguards-causing-broken-arms/ /forums/topic/645172-handguards-and-broken-wristsis-this-an-urban-myth/ The theme of these threads seems to be “it can happen…but usually doesn’t” and most riders/racers have never seen these happen…and if they have, it may have been due to other factors such as mounting the guard too high or so loose it wrapped around and “bit” the rider. Conclusion: The myth of handguards being the culprit in broken arms and/or wrist injuries just doesn’t hold water. We’ve spoken to countless racers who’ve admitted they’ve never seen this happen. We aren’t saying it doesn’t ever happen but the notion that these components are so dangerous because of it just isn’t true, and most racers agree that the benefit of the guards far outweighs the risk of injury by not running them. #3 GOTTA HEAT-CYCLE THE ENGINE TO SEAT THE PISTON We just received a big bore 2-stroke engine back from our builder and we asked him…”how do we break in this engine, and is there a certain way you like to do it?” and as with almost everyone we’ve spoken to, he has his own way to “break in” the engine. But with today’s tight tolerances, computer machining techniques and improved quality control is this really necessary? How different are the requirements for a 2-stroke vs. a 4-stroke? We figured asking some engine builders would be the best way to find out as they deal with this question all the time. One of the best responses we got was from Tom Zont of TZR Racing and his extensive insight and experience dictated that we publish his comment in entirety. Tom Zont: “The need to methodically heat cycle a new engine has changed over the years. With better materials being used, higher precision in the manufacturing of the parts themselves, and with most engines being liquid cooled, lengthy and methodical break in procedures are generally not as necessary on today's engines as they once were. This is particularly true with the newest 4 strokes.” “On any new motor, 2-stroke or 4, parts like pistons, rings, valves and cylinder walls will indeed ‘wear in’ as the engine is run. The piston rings (contact) against the cylinder wall is an area that has a measurable effect on overall output being as good as that engine can be. There are some differences between 2 and 4-strokes in what is critical during the initial ‘break-in’ however. “ “On modern 4 strokes, there is no need to "seat the piston" thru methodical heat cycling. With electro-fusion/Nikasil cylinders, ultra precision cast and forged pistons, and the relatively uniform temperatures achieved with liquid cooling in a cylinder with no ports, damaging a 4 strokes piston is extremely hard to do as long as the engine has oil in it of course. With so much quality oil being splashed and pumped to lubricate the cylinder walls and piston skirt, there is really no need to ‘seat’ or ‘wear-in’ a 4-stroke piston when new. The rings themselves will indeed ‘wear in’ to the cylinder walls over time, creating a better ring seal at the 1 hour mark than when they were brand new. This will happen regardless of how many times you warm up the motor and let it cool (heat-cycle). We have and can put a brand new 4-stroke motor (bike) on a dyno, and as long as we simply warm it up to full operating temperature, we can run it wide open to measure its power output and not damage the piston or rings. The power will go up slightly but measurably, as the parts like the rings wear-in, and the engine becomes a more efficient air pump.“ “On a modern 2 stroke however, there is some merit into ‘heat cycling’ a new piston. Because of the elaborate casting of the ports throughout a 2-stroke cylinder, the temperature of the cylinder itself is not as uniform as in a 4-stroke. Temperature variations mean that the cylinder will not expand as uniformly as the engine temperature changes. This can lead to parts of the cylinder that do not expand as much as others. (Aluminum expands dramatically as its heated) You also do not have as much oil available to cushion moving parts as in a 4-stroke. Three to four ounces of oil per gallon of gasoline is not much when you think about how long that one gallon will run your engine for. With less oil to stay between the moving parts, the chances of parts rubbing together without adequate lubrication to prevent seizure or heavy wear are increased.” “We want the piston to be very close fitting in the cylinder bore. That way it cannot tip or rock back and forth, so the rings will stay tangent to the cylinder walls and create a good seal. That new, exceptionally tight fitting piston is at risk for seizure against the cylinder walls if it expands too much or too quickly, in comparison with the cylinder that it is in. This is where the heat cycling can be a benefit. By methodically warming the piston up to incrementally hotter temperatures, we would gently, GRADUALLY scuff away material where the piston is running out of room to expand. The key here is the very gradual ‘scuffing’ away of material, ONLY in places where it has run out of clearance. Running a new 2-stroke engine for short periods, each time slightly longer, getting it slightly hotter than the last time, can indeed "seat the piston" gradually enough so as to prevent a full on seizure the first time the engine reaches maximum temperature under the most severe operating conditions.” “The term ‘seating in’ is more appropriate to the pistons rings themselves, and I prefer the term "wearing in" when referring to the piston. ‘Wearing in’ the piston essentially means that you will allow the new piston to very gradually rub away areas on its skirts that become too tight in the cylinder bore because of un-even expansion, both of the piston itself, or the walls of the cylinder. Heat cycling is a cautious way of letting this process happen in a manner that is gradual enough so as not to have what we call a piston seizure. By engine builder’s standards and terminology, a piston seizure is not always a piston that becomes completely stuck, melted or wedged in the cylinder. A heavily ‘scuffed’ piston skirt on an engine that never quit running can still be considered ‘seized’ by many, to varying degrees anyways.” “Many factors involved can influence how critical it is to ‘heat cycle’ a new 2 stroke engine to ‘wear in’ the new piston, and too many to list here. But as a general rule, it would never hurt anything by heat cycling a 2-stroke a few times before running it at full race pace. Don't confuse ‘heat cycling’ (to break in or wear in new parts) with a standard "warming up". Every modern 2 or 4-stroke should ALWAYS be warmed up gradually, as close to full operating temperature as possible, before going wide open down a holeshot straightaway. Letting all internal moving parts expand to their normal operating size somewhat gradually, will reduce wear on parts that are expanding at different rates. Not just in new engines, but for their entire lifespan.” Conclusion: The belief that “heat cycling” your engine before full operation is important, even more so for a 2-stroke versus 4-stroke. It’s not detrimental to your new engine and can result in an engine that will run longer and realize its full performance potential. #4 OFF-ROAD BIKES REQUIRE THE HIGHEST OCTANE FUEL AVAILABLE Most of us love our motorcycles and want to give them the best fuel available…but what does “best” really mean when it comes to off-road motorcycles. With bikes like Honda’s CRF250R coming stock with over 13:1 compression, this is becoming more important. Higher octane doesn't give your bike more power, it burns slower to avoid detonation in higher compression engines. Detonation is a very destructive force in an engine and should be avoided at all costs. You can find more in-depth reading on octane HERE. What does the manufacturer of your bike recommend? This is extremely important because all engines are different. You must base your decision on what grade gasoline to use by knowing the minimum grade recommended by the manufacturer. If they don’t recommend high octane gas for your bike, then you're just throwing away money by using it…there is no real benefit…except if you detect pinging or knocking when using lower octane gas, that would require you raise the octane rating to compensate. Conclusion: The answer here is a lot more evident than some of the other items we’ve covered in this article. Always use the fuel with at least the octane rating specified in your owner’s manual. Using a higher grade is of little detriment in most cases except to your wallet…but using a lower grade that could encourage detonation can do a lot of damage and why risk that for the sake of a few pennies per gallon? #5 BANGIN' OFF THE REV LIMITER IS BAD FOR THE ENGINE If you’ve been to the local MX track in the last few years or watched Arenacross/Supercross on television, you’ll hear riders and racers revving their 4-stroke bikes right up to the limits…until the rev limiter kicks in and interrupts the ignition circuit, lowering the revs and then allowing the circuit to re-energize and do it all over again, causing that familiar 4-stroke “panic rev” sound that used to associated mostly with trying to lift the front of your bike before impending doom. Justin Barcia comes to mind… Now many riders just do it for a variety of reasons that we won’t get into here…what we want to know is whether it’s bad for the engine? It sure sounds like it would be…but we see racers run their bikes like this constantly during a racing event without seeming to cause damage…is it because of the rev limiter? We’d just assume that this is a bad way to run your engine, bouncing off the rev limiter when not needed, but many newer riders use this technique and report that it actually helps them concentrate and stay focused, almost blurring out their opponents and the outside world with this wall of noise. So we reached out to some a few professionals who have a better insight into the specifics of how and why this technique can affect your engine. First up was Brent Kirk from Fastheads, who crafts amazing motocross cylinder heads and valve train components for all motorcycle brands. They offer world class precision seat machining, modifications, porting repairs, and general head servicing, so we figured Brent would be one good guy to ask about this. Brent Kirk: “Rev limiters keep the RPM’s within the limits engineers have designed the engine to operate. On 4-strokes the valve train is the most crucial factor in setting limits for RPM (because) valve springs are limited to how high of RPM they can efficiently be operated. At a certain point they can't keep up with the speed of the valve and cam and this is due partly to harmonics. As a shock wave flows up and down the length of the spring and can actually deaden it ability extend and when the cam can not control the valve due to the spring, all kinds of devastating problems can occur. Valve float is when the valve is moving so fast that it slings itself of the end of the cam lobe and if it doesn't meet up with the back side of the cam before it closes, the valve will slam the seat and bounce. During this uncontrolled time valve shims can fall out, valves can break along with lifters, retainers, keepers and springs. The best engineered coil springs won't perform much over 14,000 RPM.” Kirk continued: “On a stock 4-stroke race motor engineers limit the RPM’s so the valve spring keeps the valve train under control and within its operating range…this done by retarding the timing when the crank reaches and per determined RPM. We normally only see engine failures when the valve train is tampered with or not maintained.” Next up we spoke with Derek Harris of Harris Performance Engineering, who specializes in building custom racing 2 and 4-stroke engines in his state of the art performance shop located in Marion, Texas. Harris: “With the involvement of the factory teams into amateur racing at an aggressive level, (Justin) Barcia was signed to a large salary with endless bikes, equipment with a full-time mechanic. He would rotate practice motors once every 2 weeks or so, or more frequently if it broke. Matt Biscgelia was on the same program, and while Matt doesn't ride like Justin - it was at least once a month he would have pieces thrown out of his cases....Kids saw Barcia and the video coverage at the same time and the rest is history.” “So a production motorcycle IS built to run on the limiter all day, however, not many people follow OEM service manual suggestions. Example; Honda suggests cranks every 15 hours with full engine inspection/tear down on their 250F. Parts are stressed proportionally to RPM. The more RPM, the more stress. So if you spend time on the limiter - the bike will wear out more quickly. What's most sad is all the engines with exception of the new KTM 250F's do not make good power at the limiter. It's faster to shift before then.” “In summary - the more you rev your bike consistently - the shorter it will live. “ Conclusion: The belief that “hitting the rev limiter all the time can ruin your engine” has some basis in truth. Yes, rev limiters are set to kick in before potential damage to the engine occurs, but only in a perfect engine. Any weakness in engine components is magnified and there is a much higher potential for failure of these components at high RPM’s. #### What do you think of this article? Where did we hit? Miss? Have something to add or correct? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.
    45 points
  32. Because they are light, loose, breathe well, and are standard dirt bike wear. How is this even a question? You must be a total goon... what else are you gonna wear a t shirt or a carhartt jacket and look like someone whos never rode before... Why do people wear hats in golf? Why do rec soccer players wear cleats?
    44 points
  33. I don't think KTM is ruining off road motorcycling. The Japanese mfgs would be the biggest offenders by not offering a real variety of off road bikes... how dare KTM see a market, offer options and then reap the reward of good marketing.
    44 points
  34. While we have not seen these dampers in person, we have seen more detailed pictures of another "cloned" damper that was coming out of China that even had our logo on it. The give away that it was not really our American made product was the fact that it did not have any sweep valves on it. I cant imagine that these damper have any hard anodizing to the bodies, heat treating to the internal main wing and link arm and who knows if the tolerances are anywhere near consistent enough to perform to ours and our customers standards. While the Chinese "clone" dampers are not anything new here as there have been several imitators that went by fancy names here in America, none of them have survived due to the failures of the products and the lack of consistent and knowledgeable customer support. Our company, and competitors like GPR and Fastway survive on our customers loyalty which we have earned through our quality products and customer service and that is what has enabled us here at Scotts to survive since the early '70s. Thank You- Eric@scottsonline.com
    43 points
  35. I think your comment basically proves his point. So here is someone who rides and enjoys a different discipline of riding who occasionally likes to ride track for something different. And people are rude to him not knowing the ins and outs of being a track rat. Why would he want to ride track more than twice a year with a reception like "you probably don't even know the first about moto, or moto riders"... I am a total newb at a track and fairly new compared to most on dirt bikes. But I am an avid snowboarder, rock climber, mountain biker, and 4x4. I am more than excited to see new people coming to the sport. And I try to always be available and willing to help people learn the ropes so that they can enjoy it like I do instead of be scared off because someone was a D-bag to them for being a newb.
    43 points
  36. Bikes find spots to ride, and make a nice little single track trail.. The dummies on 4 wheel atvs then come in and bash the trails wider, and turn a small puddle into a gaping mud pit. Once the quadtards wreck the trail, then in come the bigger tards in trucks. Trails are then closed.
    43 points
  37. I've been doing a pile of trials riding vids & tutorials here, and a lot of guys have been asking for cross training versions - e.g. trials techniques applied to dirt bikes which are not only great for endurocross and extreme enduros, but useful for everyday dirt riding. These are only the written tutorials so far, but will start adding vids shortly. A guy in my trials club and took out two seconds and a win in the final of his division in endurocross in our state recently, then won each race the same series interstate. He's happy to be filmed doing these techniques so will start posting them soon. BEFORE YOU START Cross training - an introduction Protective gear Bike setup for cross training Setting up your suspension BASIC CROSS TRAINING TECHNIQUES Develop your balancing skills Full lock turns on a dirt bike Body positioning for cross training Braking Feathering & dropping the clutch Riding across a camber or slope INTERMEDIATE CROSS TRAINING TECHNIQUES Wheelies cross training-style U-turns & tight corners Hill climbs & ascents Downhills & drop offs Riding in soft sand Riding in mud Riding over rocky ground Mid-speed turns & cornering How to jump your enduro bike ADVANCED CROSS TRAINING TECHNIQUES Pivot turns & floater turns Hopping logs & up rock ledges Jumping gaps, ditches & ruts Using a kicker to jump obstacles Riding over whoops These were put together from a wide variety of sources, including tips from the masters of endurocross and extreme enduro riding: Graham Jarvis, Chris Birch, Jonny Walker, David Knight, Taddy Blazusiak, Dougie Lampkin and Andreas Lettenbichler - may their names and bikes be blessed forever, amen. .
    42 points
  38. The process of breaking in, or “running in” a new engine is a subject that has much more controversy surrounding it than it probably should. It is steeped in old rumor, myth, hard fact, and half-truths, with a healthy blending of real science and pure BS. Part of the reason for this jumble of fact and fiction is that the technology at the core of the internal combustion engine has evolved so much in just the past 70 years, and another part is that there is within the engine itself a kind of conflict of interest regarding the needs of various sub-assemblies as they are first put into service. One school of thought is that the engine needs to be treated gingerly for the first little bit of run time. Another camp insists that if it isn’t subjected to heavy loads very early on, it will sacrifice part of its performance potential. The fact is that, like a lot of things, there is some truth in most break in philosophies, and the empirical record is full of folks who followed any of several approaches and were successful, ending up with long engine life and extended performance in spite of the advice of the proponents of alternate methods. Why? Let’s examine the issue. What is “Break In” in the First Place? In any machine, when there are two freshly machined parts that move against each other, there is a basic problem of preventing them from damaging each other due to too much friction under too much force. Obviously, this is why the machine uses some form of lubrication at such points of contact. In fact, the fundamental goal of lubrication is actually to completely prevent the two surfaces having any direct contact whatsoever. There two basic states, or modes, of lubrication. These are “hydrodynamic”, wherein the moving parts glide over each other totally separated so that they “plane” on the oil like a skim board, and “boundary”, wherein the two parts have forced their way past the oil film and have come into actual physical contact. “Anti-wear” additives are added to the oil to prevent damage during boundary conditions. More in this in a minute. Next, there is the fact that even the most perfectly machined surface is never perfectly smooth. When looked at under a microscope, “asperities”, which are craggy looking high and low spots resembling a mountainous landscape, can be seen. If two such surfaces are moved across one another, the high spots of one dip into the low spots of the other, creating friction. This naturally has a tendency for the two parts to knock the high spots off of each other in the process known as wear. The unwelcome byproduct of this process is the debris that results from knocking down all those high spots, which is the major reason break in oil needs to be changed sooner than normal. With that in mind, the basic goal of running in an engine is to minimize this wear process while promoting a kind of polish between the two moving surfaces, which then reduces the operating friction, makes hydrodynamic lubrication easier to achieve, and extends the useful service life of the assembly. Make sense? Conflict of interests As mentioned earlier, different kinds of moving components operate differently, are subject to different kinds of stresses, and have different needs during break in because of that. “Plain bearing” surfaces like bushings, the bearing inserts on common automotive crankshafts, piston skirts, and the camshafts in typical motorcycle cylinder heads, need to be kept well apart from one another initially until they can develop that high degree of polished compatibility mentioned above. One means of helping this process along are “boundary lubricants”, the anti-wear compounds I spoke of. These are usually metallic compounds of zinc, phosphorus, molybdenum, sulfur, etc., whose purpose is to become embedded in the low asperities of the metal surfaces so as to prevent the neighboring high spots from digging into them. This takes place by running the oil parts together under moderate pressures with a film of oil containing these compounds for a period of time long enough to allow it to take place. Once accomplished, the surface is in effect, “flatter”, which supports the oil film better, improving hydrodynamic lubricity, and the two parts can bear on one another with very high pressures without significant wear taking place, even under “mixed film” conditions where the oil is beginning to fail to separate them. There are two major advantages in this process. First, it reduces the amount of actual wear required to produce a good polish, and that reduces the amount of debris generated during break in. The second is that these boundary lubricants can now permanently protect the moving components against damage at times when lubrication is marginal, such as during startup, or when the stays running while the bike lays on it side after a fall. Image Courtesy of DIY Moto Fix Another hazard is “adhesive wear”, which is the transfer of metal from one part to the other. This is seen as a “smearing” of metal from the bearing or piston skirt surface onto the shaft or bore surface it runs against, and from the standpoint of break in, is the result of too much pressure applied to the parts before an adequate amount of the boundary lube additives become embedded in the surface of the parts. It usually always involves the softer of the two metals being transferred to the harder. Ball and rolling element bearings don’t break in in this way because their components don’t slide over each other as plain surfaces do, but they still depend on hydrodynamic separation, and on the embedding of anti-wear compounds into their contact surfaces. They take considerably less time to receive a viable level of boundary protection, though, and can survive nicely on remarkably little hydrodynamic lubrication after a very short run in period. Then there are the piston rings. This is a major conflict area, since they do need to be protected from excessive localized wear and adhesive damage, but at the same time, their primary job is to form an effective seal against the walls of the cylinder bore. Therefore, they have to have a particular balance of anti-wear protection together with enough actual wear to produce a nearly complete match to the shape of the bore in which they run. So, with that understood, what exactly is the answer to the question of how to properly break in a new or freshly built engine? Old realities In the world of engines that was, it was normally the accepted practice to run the engine for a significant distance at not much more than half its potential output. This was true for a number of reasons, one of which was lubrication technology. Highly effective anti-wear compounds such as those currently available didn’t exist in the early fifties and prior, so the process of polishing off the asperities without wreaking havoc on the bearing surfaces had to be approached somewhat more cautiously, and given enough time to take place without the benefit of the filling in process modern phosphorus and moly compounds provide. Now that those additives are available, and generally included in premium motor oils, break-in periods spanning thousands of miles or scores of hours are no longer needed. Add to that the fact that modern metallurgy and manufacturing methods are now capable of producing much more accurately machined parts that fit together almost perfectly out of the box, and there is much less wearing in necessary in the first place. Twenty years ago, the idea that there would be one size cylinder and one size piston made for an engine, and they would always fit together with the specified clearance range would be considered impossible. Now it’s standard operating procedure for several models including high performance engines. Old myths One of the persistent myths surround the break in process is that synthetic oils can’t be used during the period. This may have been true 50 years ago, but not any more, and perhaps not even back then. The myth is centered on the notion that synthetic oil lubricates so much better than conventional oil that none of the wear required to polish and match things up will take place quickly enough, and that in particular, the piston rings will not wear into a good match to the bore fast enough. If the rings take too long to seal, the story goes, they will build up a glaze from the combustion gasses blowing past the incomplete seal. One part of this is true; if the rings don’t seat fast enough, they can actually develop a coating of partially burned fuel byproducts, and that will prevent them from ever being close to 100% effective in sealing the force of combustion up in the combustion chamber where it belongs. However, really significant advances in piston ring technology have all but eliminated this problem. More on that in a bit. The two parts that aren’t true are one, that synthetic oil lubes better, and two, that too much lube during break in is a bad thing. Synthetic oil is almost always the same basic chemical compound that conventional oil is at its base. The difference is just that instead of being dug out of the ground and having a bunch of undesirable stuff removed from it in the refining process, it’s created from scratch in a lab, with none of the bad stuff included. And in fact, while Group IV and Group V synthetics are completely lab created, the so-called “synthetic” Group III oils are conventional oils that have undergone a higher level of refinement than other conventionals, and are allowed to use that term. So there really isn’t a difference in them in terms of their ability to keep two metal parts separate from each other, only in their durability under severe conditions. Frankly, the only sensible reason not to use them during break in is that they tend to be more expensive, and break in oil should be changed after a much shorter interval because the break in process normally produces a lot more debris than will be present after the process is completed. Even if it were true that they lubed better, that would actually argue in favor of their use. Remember that the wear surfaces of new parts are rougher than we want them to end up being, which creates undesirable friction and more wear than we’re looking for. Good lubrication is more critical during break in than at any other time, so the use of a high quality lubricant is extremely important. And whether it’s synthetic or not, the use of an oil containing a lot of anti-wear additives is critical during break in because of how important the embedding of the new parts with those additives is to the entire process. What about the rings? Ah, yes, the piston rings. Back in the medieval times of the 1950’s, piston rings were almost universally made from simple cast iron. The process of machining both the rings and the cylinder bores was much less accurate than is currently standard, and they required a fairly significant amount of time to wear in to a good fit with the bore. Newly machined bores at the time were considered passably round if their radius varied by less than .0015”, while modern standards are about half that. Rings could not always be expected to be perfectly round once compressed to the bore diameter, either, which produced uneven pressures around their circumference, and uneven sealing to go with it. This was actually made worse by the introduction of chrome faced compression rings, which were brought into common use as a means of extending the wear life of the rings so they didn’t require the undesirably frequent replacement that iron rings did. However, the greater resistance to wear also extended the break in period, the time between installation and the development of a complete seal. Because of that, chrome rings were actually very much subject to becoming glazed over by combustion byproducts, and that was indeed a real problem. Image Courtesy of DIY Moto Fix The modern solution was to machine a shallow hollow face into the top ring and fill it with a hard compound of molybdenum. This served two functions; it reduced ring friction, and provided a small amount of sacrificial wear to the ring face that both sped up the “seating” process of the ring, and also protected the bore from wear by depositing the moly compound onto the bore walls, filling in the asperities there with what amounts to an anti-wear coating. Another benefit of this is found in the fact that since the top, moly-filled ring seats and seals so much faster, almost immediately, in fact, that it protects the second compression ring under it from as much exposure to combustion gasses as it would otherwise get well enough to allow the use of a long-wearing chrome ring without the associated problems of glazing while wearing in. Combine all that with current machining practices that produce rings and bores that come off the machine almost perfectly round and in matching sizes, and there’s not very much wear even necessary to seat them. Balance So with all of that having been said, the ideal break in process for a new or completely rebuilt engine is a matter of achieving a kind of balance of causing wear where it’s desirable, and preventing it where it isn’t. Ball and roller bearings don’t need to be dealt with very cautiously, but plain bearings need some respect and gentle treatment. The rings need some force applied. One popular school of thought is that the engine should be warmed up fairly judiciously to at or near normal operating temperatures, and then placed under heavy loads of at least 85% of the engine’s potential output as soon as practical in order to seat the rings. This method will in fact usually produce a good ring seal that will last a long time, but it carries obvious hazards to any plain bearing surface, including, most importantly, the piston skirt. Another even more hazardous common practice is “dry building” the top end, wherein the piston and cylinder are not lubricated at all during assembly. The concept is supposed to encourage a more complete seal of the rings by encouraging them to wear quickly, before they have a chance to have any oil glaze onto their faces. On the one hand, this is just a little bit like kidding one’s self, because oil thrown off from the connecting rod bearing in a four stroke will hit the bore walls within 10 seconds of startup at most, in a four stroke, and in a two stroke, the incoming fuel/oil mix will contact the piston and bore below the ring grooves before it ever gets to the top end for the first time. One thing that is avoided by dry building is an excess of oil behind the rings in the ring grooves that may cook down into a sludgy deposit and interfere with their ability to float freely in the grooves as the piston moves around in the bore slightly, but that can be avoided simply by not slopping the rings up to an excess. So, then, how to proceed? The ideal method of breaking in a top end is “dead running” the engine for a short time. The rotating assemblies should be lubed with an appropriate, reasonably generous amount of the same oil that will be used in operation. In a four stroke, the camshafts should be left out of the assembly altogether for this phase when practical. The piston is lubed only at the wrist pin, and the bore and rings are left dry. Then engine is then rotated by any convenient means, including the electric starter, if so equipped, for between 150 to 300 revolutions. On smaller singles, one can put the bike in gear and rotate the rear wheel by hand, or walk the bike around in gear. This will almost completely seat a moly filled top ring and coat the bore in the ring sweep area without placing any undue stress on the piston skirt. A dry moly powder product made for this precise purpose, such as Total Seal’s Quick Seat dry film lube, is a good thing to use in this step. Dust the rings with a little and wipe some on the bore. After the dead run, remove the cylinder and place one or two drops of oil on each ring, rotate it in its groove to distribute it, and wipe away any oily excess from the ring lands of the piston (the area between and immediately above and below the rings). Wet your fingers with oil and wipe a film onto the bore walls, again wiping away any oil that is more than just a film, and reassemble the top end. In real life, the compression rings of a four-stroke are lubed only by gasoline. The assembly lube should be just enough to protect them during the first 30 seconds of their exposure to live fire. Complete the rest of the assembly, lubricating all rotating and moving parts like camshafts, lifters, etc. with engine oil. Moly “assembly paste” should only be used where specifically called for, and sparingly. When it comes time to start the engine up live, pay close attention to odd noises, leaks, loose things, and verify oil pressure and delivery to the extent possible. Give it at least 30 seconds to run up normal oil pressure and fill the passages of the lube system. If you don’t have a good sized fan to blow over the radiators, it’s wise to hop on and ride it around fast enough to keep it from heating up too quickly. Shut it off and let it cool a little while you double check things mechanically. This lets it “soak “ in its own heat a little, and evens out the internal temperatures. Then it’s time for phase two. While it’s still warm, start it up and ride at a level at least 25% of its capability, but not more than 60% for around 5 minutes, then increase that to from 35% to 75% for another 10 minutes. Here, you can take another brief break to recheck your work, then take it out and run it fairly hard, with cycles of acceleration and deceleration at about 90% of it’s full potential for around 10 minutes. At this point, shut it down, change the oil and service the filter, and call the process done. Break in is over. Go out and ride. Engines off the showroom floor If you’re dealing with a brand new bike off the showroom floor instead of an engine you just went through, there’s even less to worry about. That’s because the factories usually do the dead run on the cylinders during the assembly. Methods vary from one brand to another depending on how automated the process is, but almost all of them do it one way or another. Then when the machine reaches the end of the line, it gets started and checked over for any problems. The factory approach to addressing issues that turn up at this point also varies, but any bike that makes it to the dealer has been run long enough to skip the initial steps above and go right to the second phase; run it for about the first 10-15 minutes at up to about 60-75% of its capacity, then step it up for another 10 to 15. You want to avoid thrashing it right at first, but don’t “baby it” during the process, either. Shut it down, look it over, and if all looks well, call it done and have at it. The truth is that the break in period has been reduced to a less than one hour experience by improvements in metallurgy and machining methods, improved engine oils, and proper assembly practices. The main keys to success are to put it together right, avoid either being too hard or too easy on it at first, use a good oil during the period, and do a complete oil change early. ********* About the author Richard Ribley, (aka grayracer513) was a professional motorcycle mechanic and fabricator for 9 years, then moving on to automotive dealerships, where he specialized in engine, transmission, and powertrain overhaul and repair for over over 27 years. He is an ASE and Chevrolet Master Technician certified. During the last 15 years he has maintained his own fleet of motorcycles and built engines and suspensions as a sideline for friends and associates.
    42 points
  39. Purpose: I like working with my hands, and wanted to come up with my own skid plate at a fraction of the cost of those on the market. I’ve previously used and OE Hard parts aluminum and HDPE skid plates, but found them to have high sliding friction and/or weight compared to other modern materials. The total cost of material for this project was approx. $50 CDN. Tools are not included in cost. Difficulty: 3 out of 5. You need to have some knowledge of how to use tools such as a rivet nut, jig saw, and heat gun. Build Time: I believe this could be done in approx. 3-4 hrs or less if you are a good fabricator. In total this one took about 8 hrs to do, but my lesson learnt was I a lot of time trimming the plastic down to suit as I had a poor initial template. I think I could get the second one down to ❤️ hrs as the template is the majority of the work. Plate Material: UHMW has very high impact and abrasion resistance in comparison to OEM style HDPE skid plates. You may be able to use Nylon as well. UHMW is the same material I believe both Obie link guards and SXS Slideplates are made form. I'm not sure if TM Designs uses Nylon or UHMW, but I believe they are using Nylon. UHMW should have no issues withstanding the heat of the engine, but leave some room for your exhaust. Nylon would withstand heat better but is much harder to form. I chose to use 3/16" material as that is the same thickness as my previous KTM OEM skid plate and Obie link guards. I have a friend who followed my procedure and successfully used 1/4", but it is a bit harder to mold/bend. I believe the SXS slideplates are also made of 1/4". Tools & Material Required: A bench vice or other method of clamping the material Cardboard (of similar thickness to the UHMW) Sharpie/pen Measuring tape/ruler Paint pen Jigsaw Scissors Heat gun Hole saw Hack saw Rivet nuts and gun (purchased at harbor freight in the USA or Princess Auto in Canada) I recommend to use high quality knurled steel rivet nuts, not the cheap aluminum ones UHMW sheet 1” Aluminum tubing (for front mounts) Roughly 1/8” Aluminum flat plate (for rear mount) Low Profile Hardware (I recommend Stainless Hex Socket Flanged Button Head Hex Screws). Button head cap screws will also work. Template Process: Start by cutting a template out of cardboard, this is a method I jokingly like to call CAD (Cardboard Aided Design). Tape and form this to your bike frame; markup and trim the cardboard until you get the shape and profile of the skid plate you desire. Be sure to get this template precise, as the cardboard is much easier to cut and change than the final UHMW material. Transpose the cardboard onto the UHMW and use a paint pen to trace out the profile; mark up the cuts and bends. Plastic Process: Cut the plastic using a jigsaw or band saw, and a hacksaw as required. I recommend a jigsaw for tight corners. You can use a file to clean up any cuts for a more professional look. The process of forming the UHMW involves the use of a heat gun and a vice to clamp and form your bends. Heat up from the inside of your bend, and in addition make quick passes with the gun on the outside. You will see the material become shiny and glisten with heat; this is when it will form well. If you don't heat up the outside, the plastic will separate and crack. Take care not to overheat and melt the material. I recommend testing with a small scrap piece prior to performing on your skid plate cutout. Slowly bend the material and hold it in place until it cools and maintains form. You will find you need to over bend it, as it will spring back a bit. Keep moving the plastic cutout to the bike and checking the fit until all of your bends are completed. You can reheat and increase or decrease the angle of the bends as you like to get a nice fit. I drilled a few large holes in the bottom for drainage and washing purposes. You can add a hold for oil draining as well if you like. Tip: If you did not heat the outside of the bend properly and/or over bent it, you may have cracked the material. I used a HDPE (P-Tex) stick to plastic weld some minor cracks I made before I learned it was necessary to heat the outside of the bend. You can purchase these at snowboard/ski shops in stick form. Simply light the stick on fire and drip it into the cracks. These sticks also work well for repairing stripped holes in KTM gas tanks where wood screws are used. Mount Fabrication: I made three mounts in total out of aluminum. Initially I only had two, but with all of the rocks and logs we ride over here I found the skid plate was not as secure as I would have liked. The 2 forward mounts were made of 1” aluminum square tubing. I simply cut 3 sides of the tubing so that I had tabs that stuck out and rested on the frame. I then drilled holes in and inserted rivet nuts to create threads for the fasteners. These mounts were then transposed and aligned to the skid plate to drill holes to match for the screws. The rear mount was made by bending aluminum into an S shape, so that it would clamp on the rear frame brace by the swingarm. This was then similarly transposed to the skid plate for drilling holes. I used rivet nuts to create the threads for this mount as well. Optional Work and Lessons Learned: I made the 2nd front mount to fasten the skidplate better, as with initial testing and riding over large logs, the old one appeared loose. I also added a second small square piece of UHMW to the linkage guard, as I found this area was wearing due to impacts from rocks and logs. I simply drilled holes and secured it with button head cap screws. A poor template will result in trimming more plastic, which takes much more time. Make sure to get the template right the first time, as it is a lot easier to cut and transpose to the plastic. The plastic can be quite slow cumbersome to cut! Conclusion: Now that I have fabricated one, I likely won’t ever buy a skid plate again. This was a pretty easy and fun project, and will save you a lot of money if you don’t consider your time required. Having developed a good template, it will be quick and easy to build a second one.
    41 points
  40. TLDR - I’m an idiot and got in way over my head last week and paid the price. A recap of what NOT to do. Full disclosure - I am not an experienced rider. I’d put myself in the fairly mediocre category with an irrational sense of adventure and invincibility. I brought my bike on a family camping trip in a National forest. I targeted some single track to ride solo early in the morning and be back by 10 am. The trail system was very long with many entrances and exits. I chose a section in the middle that was the closest to our campsite. I did some basic research on the trail system to see that it was open and that people were riding it but (first mistake) I did not research the specific section I was considering. I rode to the trail head, confirmed that it was open to dirt bikes, and headed in. About 5 mins in I turned around due to the creek overflowing and not wanting to risk it solo (one of my ONLY good decisions this day). When I got back out to the trail head I considered going to a completely different area that was all forest service roads but I had done zero research on it so I decided to just jump on the same trail system on other side of road. The signage at the trailhead showed it was also open to dirt bikes. The creek crossing on this side was more manageable and then led to a very long and steep climb up a mountain. Overall the 1st hour was moderately challenging for me but a great ride. I got some nice pictures in and took in the amazing views. The 2nd hour, though, things started to turn and I failed to heed the clear warning signs. First, I hit a downed tree on the trail. It was medium sized but I cleared it with relative ease and kept riding. Further ahead I came to a second tree that was larger and slightly raised off the ground. I could see other rider’s tracks and that they had cleared it so I attempted it. I didn’t clear it and after a few attempts I eventually just pulled it over. Third tree, cleared, so kept riding. 4th tree - couldn’t clear it, couldn’t even pull it over, and this is where the mistakes compounded I decided to ride around it. One tree I told myself and I’ll be very gentle off trail. It wasn’t and I didn’t. It got worse from there with more downed trees and no more tracks from other riders, but I just kept pushing and trying literally anything to get through the numerous trees that lay ahead. At one point I fell down a steep slope while trying to get around another mess of tree stumps and branches that I don’t think anyone would or could ride over. I don’t know why I didn’t just turn around there after that debacle, except some internal voice telling me I needed to “just get to the end”. I finally make the midpoint peak. I know I’m very tired at this point and I now just want to get home. I have to make a choice to either turn around and deal with the same trees I just dealt with (the known), or drop into the back side (the unknown). The back side was the shortest way out and the trail headed down immediately whereas the way I can was along the ridge for a few miles before dropping down. I must have convinced myself that the downed trees were only a problem on the ridge I was currently on, and if I could just get down off this ridge quickly enough then the trails would be perfect again like they were on the front side . I decided to go down the backside on nothing more than pure hope and delusion. The heat was picking up and I was very tired so I may have even been hallucinating at this point. This decision would prove to be the most costly mistake. The trail down was steeper with loose rocks then I anticipated. The trail also had grass growing over it which should have sounded alarm bells that NO ONE was going this direction. I inevitably ran into an even more difficult downed tree that I couldn’t ride around, so continuing my rash of poor decisions I dragged the bike underneath it, draining what energy I had left. I skirted a few more trees and then hit a very tight dry creek ravine with walls taller than the bike. And then I finally hit the wall - a literal wall of completely impassable tall thicket all around me. I was done. Now 4 hours in, I turned around and headed back. I’m already at 0 energy, temps climbing towards the 90s and I’m just gassing the bike and hoping it can do ALL the work. I started crashing and flipping the bike repeatedly. I’m just a few hundred yards below the one tree I dragged the bike under an hour ago, but I can’t get over these last couple trees and get up the hill. I tried 5 or 6 different routes and they all resulted with me and the bike laying on the ground Near passing out and already late to return to my family, I finally relented that I wasn’t getting out on the bike and started calling for help. I luckily had both sat and cell signal but my wife didn’t have service at the campsite, so I called 911. They said I was too deep into the National forest, and they had no way to get me out. The deputy suggested I leave the bike and hike down the ravine I was trying to climb out of, to follow the creek, and he’d meet me at the next trailhead which was about 3.5 miles down. It was 4.7 miles back the way I came so a mile less walking sounded good, except.... there was NO trail. The backside of the mountain had apparently been both burned out by a forest fire and eroded by a series of floods with hundreds of downed trees, rock slides, numerous river crossings, and 7’ tall thicket. The deputy apparently didn’t know this or consider it. Nevertheless, it was my problem, and it was an epic disaster. It took me nearly 5 hours to hike out 3.5 miles. I ran out of water and lost cell reception in the first 30 mins. I was sending my wife my coordinates on my sat phone along the way but in hindsight there was no way anyone could find me in this mess unless I gave up and just sat there and waited for an evac (considered it at least 100x). I kept walking no matter how much my body told me to stop. I knew I was in very serious trouble (no water, risk of injury in a fall, bear skat, etc) that could potentially be fatal, but I wasn’t thinking clearly at this point. After 5 hours of complete exhaustion and dehydration I finally reached the trailhead. The County Deputy wasn’t there. No one was. I saw a water bottle, though, on a sign post which had my name written on it, along with some nuts, and knew my wife had been there. I drank that water like it was made of gold. I waited for probably 20 mins expecting that she had drove out to find a signal and that she would return but when no one came I kept walking towards the main road. I quickly realized the road to the trailhead was also washed out. My truck couldn’t make it — she must have hiked in. I kept walking. Finally. after 5 hours, I heard life. The sound of a 4 stroke. It was 3 forest rangers on their bikes. My wife had flagged them down and asked to help find me. They were in the area to do work and weren’t even aware I was in need (911 called the county sheriff and never called the forest service. Again, my problem, but my initial coordinates were in a National Forest). They gave me more water, told me my family was waiting for me at the gate to the main road, and offered me a ride on the back of their bike. My cramping wouldn’t allow it. So fittingly I had to walk another 1.5 miles out. When I rounded that final corner and saw my kids I had to put my head in my hands and cry for the first time in years. I was finally out and safe, but the pain and severe cramping continued for the next 2 days. The forest service called me on Day 2 to tell me they rode the same way I went in and cleared the trees all the way to my bike for me. They aren’t allowed to ride other peoples bikes so I’d have to hike in and get it. On the third day I hiked back in with the support of a volunteer rider from the local bike club to help me recover my bike and gear. The forest service had also added numerous signs warning people that the trail was now closed to dirt bikes past the midpoint peak and they left a log to block the trail at the backside drop-in as a final warning to idiots like me. The 4.7 mile hike back in to my bike took only 2 hours. My ride out wasn’t easy, though, as my nerves were shot with too much sitting, death grips and generally bad form, but it was very helpful to know I had the support of another rider if something happened. I eventually made it out with the bike without incident. I rode back to the campsite, put it back on the truck and drove back home with the family. I am so thankful to the US Forest Service and the local bike club that helped me. They could have just lectured me on how stupid I was but instead they just tried to help. I have since promised my wife and kids that I will NEVER ride solo again. Telling the story of my mistakes, to anyone that will listen, is my way of sealing that promise. ✌️ edit: The forest service rangers told me there was a sign at mid-peak that said the backside was "temporarily closed", but that they can fall over and they would check when they went back up. I believe them that it was up there, and it was clear as day when I hiked in along with a more serious sign warning what was ahead. All the more reason to not ride beyond your level of ability, because I missed ALL the signs.
    40 points
  41. That right there is what we call "trailer trash". I'm sure Marvin just laughed it off on his way to get his 1st place trophy.
    40 points
  42. Riding alone rules, you just have to step up your level of preparedness. Your friends will knock up some flooz and never ride again, keep your eye on the ball here, bike first, everything else second, or fifth.
    39 points
  43. I hate when you invite someone to ride who doesn’t appreciate fine things like steering dampeners and then sucks at riding and needs a solid warm up for anything other than RZR trails 🙂
    39 points
  44. 39 points
  45. PLEASE READ THROUGH THE ENTIRE PROCEDURE BEFORE STARTING. THERE ARE SUGGESTIONS AND TIPS THOUGHT THE GUIDE. BEST TO KNOW THOSE AND THE "NEXT" STEP BEFORE WORKING ON THE CURRENT ONE. This preventative Maintenance "fix" is applicable and recommended for all year and model year DRZ 2000 -present NOTE: This How To white paper is just a guide; it does not replace a service manual, general mechanical knowledge, specific motorcycle repair experience and good old common sense. With the proper tools, some general experience and this guide most users will be able to successfully check valve clearances and if required replace shims to adjust the valves to service specifications. As always if after reading though this guide, you do not feel capable of performing this maintenance task, STOP, ask questions on the forum, take pictures of your point of confusion and get your answers before you start. TOOLS: Basic hand tools, all metric 3/8 Drive socket set, 10mm to 17mm Allen key set 5mm to 15mm Wrench set 10mm to 17mm Feeler gauge set that covers up to .30mm TOOLS SUGGESTED: Magnet on a stick Digital camera Pen and paper You will be taking pictures, writing notes, removing the seat, tank, the timing sight plug on the left cover, the crank access plug on that same cover. Spark plug and valve cover. If adjustments are needed, removing the cam chain tensioner (CCT) and cam caps. Measuring the clearance between the bucket and cam, reading a very faint number printed on the valve shim, or better yet measuring it with a micrometer. This list is not all inclusive, as stated its basic. So if what is shown above is beyond what your comfortable doing, STOP find a Knowledgeable friend to help or take it to a shop. As you will be opening your motor up, the first step is to thoroughly clean the bike; both the valve cover and left side cover will be open, and accessible to dirt and other debris. Clean, degrease, and start with a clean work environment. Motor should be cool to the touch prior to starting the valve check. After bike is clean and dry, remove the seat, tank and set aside. Remove the spark plug boot, and blow out the spark plug well with compressed air. I like to squirt a shot of brake clean in there, and hit it again with the air till dry. I do this from both directions, the drain hole in the side of the head, and down the spark plug well. No Air compressor? Brake clean is a good second bet.. just not as good as high pressure air. Take out the crank access plug. CAUTION: This plug is often over tightened by a previous person, making it difficult to remove. See footnotes at the end of this article for removal of a stuck and damaged access cover plug. Remove the timing window plug on the top of the left cover. Remove the spark plug. Remove valve cover. Congratulations, you have finished preparing your DRZ to check the valves. Setting Timing and Checking the valves Set the motor to Top Dead Center (TDC) on the compression stroke. The timing index mark on the flywheel will be in the center of the sight window (Note your looking to align the index line NOT the T next to it center of the sight window) Looking at the cams from the side the lobes should be pointed at 10 and 2 O’clock If not and the index line is in the center of the window, you're not on the compression stroke. Try again; turn the motor in the normal forward direction, until the index line is centered. The cam sprockets will look like this if you’re using OEM cams. The #3 and #2 should be straight up. The other index lines even with the top flat surface of the head. So the motor is at TDC now, it’s cool to the touch and it’s time to check the valve clearances. Take a quick look at the timing mark, and make sure the crank has not rotated and the index line is still in the center of the sight window (this is a repetitive step, but key to getting good readings off valves) The OEM service limits for clearance is: Intake 0.10mm ~ 0.20mm Exhaust 0.20 ~ 0.30mm So starting with any valve and bucket, pick the feeler gauge blade of the minimum service limit and see if it fits cleanly, without force between the shim bucket and the cam face. Starting with an intake valve try a 0.10mm blade, if it does not fit in, your clearances are too tight. Go to the next size down blade in your feeler gauge set until you find one that fits, and write down the size. If the 0.10 blade fits, go up one size at a time until you get to a blade that does not fit. Write down the last blade size that fits. Do so for the remaining three valves. Bottom line, your job here is to find the blade that fits the valve clearance gap, it should be a slight drag as you pull it though.. If your clearances are too small (below service limit) you will need a smaller (thinner) shim. Swapping to a thinner shim under the bucket will move the bucket farther away from the cam and increase your clearance. If the clearance was too large (above the service limit) you will need a larger shim (thicker shim) In order to move the valve bucket closer to the cam face. If your clearances are within the service limit. You’re done, put everything back together and go ride. Remember as the valve face wears, they recede into the head and the valve clearances get smaller (less) So if you are measuring a clearance close to the minimum service limit,, consider adjusting them now. Once the hard coating on the valve face starts to wear, the valve clearances will close up in just a few hours. You can adjust them again to service limits, but they will rapidly continue to wear. It’s time for a valve job. Removing the Cams and Adjusting Valve Clearances In order to remove the cams to gain access to the valve bucket and below it the shim, you will need to make sure the cams are at TDC (or close) then remove the cam chain tensioner (CCT). Next break loose each of the cam cap bolts in a criss cross pattern, taking note of the position of each one. You will find two different lengths, two long, 6 short. If you mix up the position later upon install and put a short one in a long hole you will pull out (strip) the threads when you try and tighten it down. Once all eight cam cap fasteners are out, remove chain from the sprocket as you remove the cam. Set the cams aside in a protected location, clean and dust free as you can. To keep the chain from falling down, use a long spring, piece of wire or zip tie to hold it up. If it falls free, no worry.. Just retrieve it with a hook before you turn the crank. It cannot fall so far down you cannot retrieve it; nor can it fall off the lower sprocket...but it can gather up and bind, if you turn the motor over with the chain jammed up down there, you can and often will break out the cam chain guide lower mount. The valve bucket is now accessible, remove it with a magnet, or I sometimes use an old valve lapping tool (suction cup). CAUTION: the small shim (9.48mm dia) may stick to the underside of the bucket, it may come part way out of the valve top, or it could stay in place.. Be careful it does not come off with the bucket and then drop free to be lost in the motor. Retrieving a shim from the motor is possible, but time consuming, and often requires further disassembly and or removal of the motor from the frame. Many hours may be lost doing this..So spending a few extra minutes to stuff clean lint free rags in the open parts of the head is well worth it till you understand what is happening. What shim do I need to fix my clearances? Now that you know what the clearance is for each valve, you have the shims out and know what size each is, and you know the service limits it's time to do some math and figure out what shim you need to install. The OEM service limits for clearance are: Intake 0.10mm ~ 0.20mm Exhaust 0.20 ~ 0.30mm Shims come in two types, The OEM has half sizes or increments of 0.02mm, and the aftermarket ones come in .05mm increments only. You can use either to correctly adjust the clearances. Speaking of shim sizes, the diameter of a DRZ valve shim is 9.48mm.. and then the shim thickness is noted on the shim itself.. Typically they start at about 2.00mm and go up to 4.50mm or so. Normal shims used in a DRZ are in the 2.00mm to 3.50mm. Less than 2.00 or so will often be so thin that the shim would be below the surface of the valve spring top… causing the bucket to push down on the top and not the shim. This will damage the bucket, and often cause the valve locks to come loose. So for the sake of explaining what shims you need, lest try some math. Assume you want the clearance to be in the middle of the spec. and you’re using an aftermarket shim from Hotcams Intake valve, measured clearance of 0 .05mm Valve shim is a 2.50mm Service limit is 0.10mm to 0.20mm (you decide you want it in the middle of the spec at 0.15mm) So you need increase the clearance .10mm That means you need a 0.10mm THINNER shim. If you install a 2.40mm shim you will end up with a clearance of 0.15mm. Your desired endstate. One more: Exhaust valve, measured clearance of .25mm Valve shim is a 2.85mm Service limit is 0.20mm to 0.30mm (you decide you want it in the far end of the spec at 0.30mm) So you need increase the clearance 0.05mm That means you need a 0.05mm THINNER shim. If you install a 2.80mm shim you will end up with a clearance of 0.30mm. Your desired endstate. Timing the cams Timing the OEM cams.. Not as hard as you think,,,,so just stop thinking... This is a very easy thing to do, and often misunderstood or over complicated. From the start, cams on the table, the only thing you have to get right is the crank at TDC.. Line up the timing mark.. There is no "stroke" to move it to, as that is related to the cam position and they are on your workbench. So set the timing mark line (not the "T" ) in the center of the window. Pull up on the cam chain, Install the exhaust cam with the sprocket timing marks close to the correct position lobes at 10 0’clock. Install the intake cam, timing marks in the general position and lobes pointing at 2 O'clock. Stick your finger in the hole where the CCT goes, and push against the timing chain guide to take up chain slack.. Check the flywheel timing mark and look at the cam timing marks.. Make note of which cam needs to roll forward or backward to get the timing correct. One at a time, remove the cam, lift the chain of the sprocket and rotate the cam, sit it back in the head and do the other. Check flywheel timing mark again, push against the chain guide, check the cam timing marks. Adjust again if needed. If not, install the cam caps.. Remember those two longer cam cap fasteners …. Get them in the correct holes.(see pic above) As you most likely do not have an expensive 1/4” drive torque wrench, recently calibrated, in the correct tq range, do yourself a favor, and just snug up the cam cap socket head cap screw with an Allen key in two steps, in a criss cross pattern... Seat all the way around, then snug all the way around...M6 fasteners in an aluminum head that you want evenly tightened..TQ wrench is best.. but ONLY if it is a quality tool, calibrated in the right TQ range. ....I repeated that info for a reason... feel free to do a search in this forum for the many that choose to ignore the warning. Reinstall the CCT (if using a ACCT, reset it first) Verify your valve clearances If you measured carefully before, your notes were correct and math right.. The clearances are dead on where you wanted them. But a few minutes to check is important. You can do this before putting the cam chain tensioner back by just sticking your finger in the CCT hole and pressing in on the guide while you rotate the motor over one full rev. This helps squeeze out any excess oil between the shim and cam/bucket.. as well as ensure the shim is fully seated.. Follow the procedure found above in Setting Timing and Checking the valves. If valves are in spec, you're done here. At this point reinstall the CCT, double check your timing. Reinstall everything you took off, and go ride. Keep in mind, routine maintenance is checking your clearances, against the book spec, and your last measurements. Adjusting them often is not maintenance, its a temp fix. Once valves start wearing enough for clearances to continually lesson ride to ride, month to month.... its time for head work.. re shimming them to spec only buys you a few running hours.... and the valve will eventually fail catastrophically eventually. So need to get them in spec for one more weekend ride?? Sure,,,,, then park it till new valves and associated work has been done.
    39 points
  46. Made this a little project to help TT'ers with detonation and timing factors. This came about for two reasons. One, there were people running the exact same fuel, config and alt/temp while one would get ping (detonation) while another would not. Two, since many people have timing lights in their garages and not dial indicators, a conversion to time the bike with a timing light seemed helpful. So the two methods were tried side by side to a) reduce ping (detonation) and make it easier for TT'ers to time their YZ's. (which I'm pretty sure most people weren't doing) Also, keep in mind that these indicator-advance specs are unique to the '99-'09 YZ250 because of it's flywheel-stator relationship, stroke, rod length and CDI advance programming. The results: -The whole area behind the flywheel is the moveable stator which will always be in the same place relative to the flywheel since the flywheel fires relative to it. This means you can't use the stator as a ref. for the timing light. You have to mark the case, which makes it very imprecise since you're marking an uneven surface which is far away from the mark on the flywheel. -Advantage dial indicator -The dial indicator can be wiggled into the spark plug hole with the tank in place while the timing light needs to have the tank removed to clip it onto the spark plug wire. So now you have to start the bike with the tank off to use the timing light......uh, better be quick...LOL -Advantage dial indicator -The timing marks put on the case to use the timing light would be +- 2 deg. because of their lack of accuracy with the light signal bouncing around and scatter etc. while the dial gauge can set timing in 1/2 degree increments fairly easily -Advantage dial indicator -The dial indicator is really very easy to use and super accurate....AND.... it became very obvious that there's another benefit to the dial indicator. What would you say to a quick way to see if you need to do a bottom end job because of excessive rod bearing clearances? I know my bottom end is good....when the the crank is turned very slightly, the dial gauge should move exactly with the the crank.... zero clearance on the crank bearing and piston bearing....if someone could turn the crank slightly and not see the indicator move, ie. meaning they had clearance on one of the bearings, it could pre-identify a worn crank or piston bearing before losing the engine to a catastophic failure. -Imho, there's no doubt that the dial indicator is the way to go and should really be in every owners tool box. -My bike, which had never had it's timing reset from the factory, was one degree advanced over the stock spec. This was enough to cause a very slight ping (detonation) off idle on 91 pump and optimized jetting. I backed off the timing to 1.0 degree retarded from stock and the detonation is gone. Cost $0 No race gas or rich jetting required. -Retarding the timing slightly has other benefits as well. -If you have excessive wheelspin or difficulty controlling your line because of the terrain when the bike comes on the powerband, retarded timing will smooth out the hit. The level of hit smoothness is directly related to the amount of retardation you set. -The bike will retain and actually gain a slight amount of top end rev capability and over rev. The retarded timing raises exhaust temperature at high rpm causing the expansion chamber to flow better at high rpm. -Because of the reduced tendency to have detonation, it is easier to jet the bike leaner for the best response and power. -What you get is a YZ250 powerband that is smoother and easier to control and less likely to detonate on pump gas. -This is a great mod for off road enduro type riding, slippery conditions and people who just want a less violent powerband hit. Think of it as a free flywheel that fixes your detonation as a bonus. -My 1.0 degree retardation was more for a reduction of the detonation than to change the power characteristics. I couldn't tell a power difference at 1.0 degree of retardation from stock. You really have to go to 2 degrees to feel the powerband change. This is another benefit. For the guys that like the hit and mid range punch, you can back off the timing 1-2 degrees and just take care of the detonation. The guys that want the power change can go 2+ degrees to get both. -I will be posting a great source for timing indicators next week as I'm testing a couple of them to get the best one. These will be very affordable. The Procedure: -Remove the flywheel cover and spark plug. -Maneuver the dial indicator into the spark plug hole and screw the collar all the way into the hole with the set screw loose. -When the collar is tight, back it out to access the set screw and back the indicator the same degrees backward from your view. -Tighten the set screw and rotate the indicator/collar back clockwise until tight and seated. -Rotate the flywheel until you find where the dial indicator reverses. Rotate the bezel on the indicator to make that point zero. If the point is on the upper half of the indicator (blocked by the tank) you can rotate the indicator back counterclockwise and reset the collar/set screw and retighten and rotate to resnug the assembly so that the needle zeros in the bottom half of the scale. This sounds like a pain but it is very easy and intuitive once you do it a few times. -Now that you have zero, rotate the flywheel clockwise (backwards) until the indicator moves .007 in. This is 7 graduations since the scale is in .001 increments. This is the stock setting. -Look at the timing mark on the bottom of the flywheel. Are they aligned? If not, align them exactly. Look back at the dial indicator. How far is it from zero? This was the true timing your bike was at. Mine was at .0095 or about 1 degree advanced (see table below). -Decide what you want to do. Stock? Remove some advance? How many degrees of removal etc.? (see table below) -There are three stator screws to loosen on the stator. Use a large phillips, not a medium sized one. A medium sized one won't fully seat and you'll damage the screws and be...uh...screwed. -The screws are tight from the factory. Use either an impact screwdriver or your large phillips and tap the driver lightly with a hammer multiple times to unseize the screws. This made a big difference on my bike and I didn't have to use ludicrous force to loosen them -Once you decide where you want the timing using the table below, rotate the flywheel so that the indicator is at that position. -After loosening the stator screws just enough to move the stator, align the stator with your new flywheel position using the timing mark under the flywheel. Tighten the stator screws and exercise the flywheel back and forth and reset it to your timing spec on the indicator and recheck the alignment of the flywheel mark and stator timing mark. They should be aligned. Reset if needed. -Scary step Rotate the flywheel slightly back and forth very slowly and notice if there is any delay or lag of the indicator to move as you reverse the flywheel direction. If the indicator fails to move momentarily, you may have just saved your head, cylinder and case. There should be no noticable clearance on the big and small end bearings, which would show up in the indicator not moving as you reverse it's rotation. If you do have clearance ie. lag or delayed movement in the indicator while reversing direction, it is strongly recommended that you remove the cylinder and check your rod small and big end bearing clearances. If the indicator moves directly with the reversal of the flywheel rotation, you're bottom end clearances are good. -Remove the indicator, reinstall the flywheel cover, spark plug and cap. -Go roost! Table of Indicator Readings to Advance Specs. .027 5 degrees advanced .022 4 degrees advanced .018 3 degrees advanced .014 2 degrees advanced .010 1 degree advanced .007 Stock Setting .004 1 degree retarded .002 2 degrees retarded .001 3 degrees retarded .000 5 degrees retarded (the limit of travel of my stator) -.001 7 degrees retarded (the 3 to 5 and 5 to 7 jump are correct due to rod angle) -.002 8 degrees retarded For guys that just want to remove detonation, start at 1 degree retarded and then go to 2 degrees if needed For guys that want a powerband change, start at 2 degrees retarded and then go to 3 degrees if needed. The other numbers are just for ref. and range in case your's is off substantially. PS Someone who actually wants more hit and an explosive mid range could go to 1 degree advanced and then try 2 degrees advanced and 3 degrees advanced This should only be tried with at least a 50% race gas mixture. The 3 degrees advanced position will most likely require 100% race gas. Be very aware of detonation before long term use in this configuration
    38 points
  47. If you choose to sell the bike be honest on what the problems are. Me I would rebuild the bike and no what I really had in the end. The joker who sold it to you wasn't up front on the problems. Don't choose to be the same.
    38 points
  48. Seeing my wife standing in the doorway as I rolled the new KTM into the garage.
    38 points
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