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About VTForester

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  1. So a minor update here, I haven't been able to race again yet primarily because the knee was still bothering me the last time I had an opportunity. Since then though I have been able to do a fair amount of trail riding and last week I made a point of a good hard 90 minutes on trails I was familiar with. Much tighter trails that I used to ride as well. My tentative plan is to race the VCHSS rrace at Blue Ridge on Sunday. One goal, just finish the race.
  2. I was wearing these: https://www.rockymountainatvmc.com/search?term=Leatt+knee#/p/829/44627/Leatt-Dual-Axis-Knee-Guards Seriously considering knee braces instead given I have a history of minor knee issues already.
  3. Certainly wasn't my intention or belief that I would do well in my first race, I didn't go into it with ego. What I did do however was let a rush to catch up/make up for my early mistake cause me to further screw the pooch. Lesson learned there! Riding as clean as possible regardless of the end result is my goal this weekend. I suspect looking at my lap time/speed that I would have been more than satisfied with the result if I hadn't tried to make it all up in the first turn
  4. A couple of pictures grabbed off the GoPro. All ready to race...or so I thought... Hey...How did my bike get over there... I guess I can see why my knee hurts, this is not an ideal angle for it Anyway, the knee is healing up well and I hope to race again next weekend. I think I'll make it my goal to just not crash in the first turn, that seems achievable
  5. Good points about the mental aspect. I was nervous and I think I frankly quit thinking after I re-started the bike following the stall. Came way too hot into that first turn and paid for it for the rest of the race. Next race I'll ease into the start and find a good pace. I won't say I'm in perfect shape but but I'm not too bad. The prior weekend we did 30 miles backpacking in the VA mountains over 3 days. One thing I learned a long time ago backpacking in New Mexico is that it is entirely possible to go to a place in your head where pain doesn't register and you just keep moving forward. That ability has paid off several times over the years but it can be a danger too. Point well taken! I appreciate the advice and suggestions. Pictures tomorrow.
  6. I wouldn't be surprised if body position was a big part of it especially as I got tired/sloppy. Tires were new-had about 15 miles on them after replacing a set of Kendas I had worn pretty well practicing. Running 12psi. I'll play with suspension some and most of all focus on technique.
  7. So, I've been debating about whether or not to start this thread for the last 48 hours. I decided it would be a good way to collect criticism and to learn something about how best to move forward. First a little about me…I have a competitive streak a Mile wide. I'll race you at anything and I'm a shitty loser. I’m don’t mean that to say I am unrealistic or a poor sport about it, just that I expect to do well when I am capable of it. I used to shoot competitively (USPSA and IDPA) and did well. Well enough to win at a national level and have sponsors paying for some of my expenses. I won when I put in the work, simple as that. Work, family, etc have changed my focus and while I still shoot a fair amount, I don't shoot competitively anymore. I ride street bikes and have recently taken an interest in riding dirt. I bought a well used 2003 WR450f because I don’t have any better sense than to start with a big bike and have been practicing on 90 acres I have at home and a local riding spot. I have more or less rebuilt this bike from the ground up, bearings, top end, controls, carb,suspension, everything. It runs like a raped ape just look at it hard and it starts, no bog, lots of power. Scary as &%$#@! for a new dirt rider but it has been a good –if unforgiving- teacher. . I have a 2 mile course laid out at home with Woods and flat grass track. I have gotten to feeling pretty good riding it at a good clip ( 20 mph) average. On the strength of the above foolishness, I entered my first hair scramble race last weekend. It was a VXCS race in North Carolina. The short version is it did not go all that well. I had practiced starts, but managed a nice wheelie at the start followed by stalling the bike. That led to a rush to the first turn, which led to overshooting the first turn and a pretty nasty crash in front of God and everybody else in attendance. I banged up an already bad right knee in the process but I wasn't about to say uncle on the first turn of my first race. From there the race gradually improved, I had some falls but nothing major and I was getting much more comfortable with the terrain. It was not at all what I had hoped for in my first race though. I had no expectations of finishing well, really all I hoped for was finishing the race. It turns out that “tweaking” my knee on the first turn crash was a little more than I thought and I could not stand on the pegs and stay stable on the bike. The knee quit hurting after a mile or so but I just could not shift weight back and forth like I needed to in tight turns in the woods. By 6 or so miles I couldn't really stand on the pegs effectively at all so I was getting beat up pretty good sitting and crawling my way through. By 8 miles in I was beat, and the bike Was 250*+ due to me moving slow. I hated to do it but at the end of lap 1 I called it quits. Damn that hurt to do! So Monday I spent watching the GoPro video and nursing a well swollen knee. I'm pretty convinced that I could have run a few more laps if I could have just stood normally on the pegs and supported my weight. So what's next? Heal up a bit and practice practice practice. I have a nice course laid out at home But I need to make some changes and make more of it tight woods as opposed to ATV trails. I also am joining a local motorcycle only club with a good number of trail miles to ride. One thing I could use some help on, I was having trouble with my front wheel washing out in all kinds of conditions. Soft dirt and rough ground. I'm thinking a little more preload on the rear and maybe setting the forks down 5mm or so in the clamps would be a start at shifting weight forward? All in all, I had a fun if somewhat disappointing first race. I've got a Lot to work on and I'm planning to try another one next month. The only way to learn is to do right? FWIW- the bike: 2003 WR450 Fresh top end Hot cams Renthal sprockets (13/50) and chain CR style front brake cable Trail tech vapor Racetech springs for my weight & rebuild front and rear suspension Fluidyne radiators Clarke fuel tank Cycra hand guards JD jet kit in a refurbished carb FMF power bomb head pipe FMF power core pipe Perrelli scorpion XC tires Tusk handlebar risers (I'm 6’2”) Ricochet skid plate Pictures to come. The video has a bit too much colorful language with the way I was hurting and mad at myself for me to post it.
  8. I always forget to take pictures when the bike is dirty...but here it was before, kinda naked looking. This bike has been a project. I bought it pretty cheap needing lots of work but it is running great now and is a blast to ride. What Ive done: Replace poorly installed base gasket that was leaking antifreeze into the oil Fluidyne Radiators Tusk Rear Brake lever Hammerhead designs rear brake spring setup Rebuild rear caliper Rebuild front Master Cyl Rebuild front caliper CR style brake line Replace fork seals & bearings & add seal savers New Tires FMF Powerbomb header FMF Powercore exhaust Axle Blocks Rebuilt carb & JD Jet kit Renthal Oring chain & Sprockets Before I bought it the top end was rebuilt, wiseco piston, hot cams, valve job etc.
  9. Did a little practice until I got too wet and cold, then cleaned it up and did all new graphics and jewelry.
  10. Not exactly what you are looking for but a Clark tank on my 03 wr450f works fine with fluidyne radiators. The cap is a little tight to open but not really a problem.
  11. You certainly were. This has turned into quite a project bike but the limited riding I've gotten in has been a blast. New issue...fork seals. Another quick fix but another thing to work on nonetheless. Also going to rebuild both calipers. The rear isn't terrible but the front is a mess. Front master cyl rebuild as well. I'll have a brand new 2003 model before long
  12. So as in most things I touch I got a little carried away.... First, The source of the coolant leak was rather easy to work out after puling the top end down: In the end it will be good to have pulled the bike completely apart and started fresh, I found lots of other little things I wanted to correct. If parts arrive as promised then the rest of this should be done in time to ride this weekend: Fluidyne radiators (because leaks in both and beat to hell) Silicone Radiator hoses Renthal chain and sprockets Rear Brake master cyl rebuilt New brake pads front and rear JD Jetting kit Acerbis Handguards Kenda Tires - Trackmaster II Tusk brake pedal - Factory one was MIA Odi V2 grips All fluids and filters changed
  13. It was fair, though I would have certainly argued for less if I had had the good sense to pull the dipstick and find this problem. I thought about seeing if the guy would stand behind his work but nixed the idea. For one, I'm a little dubious of his abilities at this point and second IF it is just a gasket then it would take longer for me to return the bike to him than to just pull the top end down and fix it. So I started last night after work just to make a little progress while I wait for gaskets:
  14. Hello all, new to the forum. Ive been lurking and reading a ton lately and thought it was time to say hello! Im not a new rider, though it has been years since I've ridden dirtbikes. I did as a kid, and have been on street bikes several years. I got the itch to buy a dirtbike again just to goof off/trail ride. I first borrowed a friends newer crf250x. It was a fun ride but seemed lacking on power after a few hours so I went looking for something I wouldn't get tired of as quickly....Long story short I bought a 03 WR450F that (supposedly) just had the top end rebuilt and looked to be in generally good shape except for a few little projects. I'm told +/- 8 hours on the bike since rebuild. I didn't pay much for the bike so I expected to spend some money on getting it back to good shape...I'm posting today though because it looks like it may be a little more in depth than I expected. What I was told for parts: Kibblewhite valves HotCams Wiseco High Compression Piston White Bros Exhaust Clarke Tank Supposedly(there's that word again) rebuilt by a certified motorcycle tech. I rode the bike when I bought it and very briefly when I got home, runs great, needs a little fine tuning on jetting but otherwise good. The next evening after work I was all set to change oil, coolant etc and just go over the bike with a fine tooth comb. I stupidly never pulled the dipstick when I went to look at it. I ran the bike a few mins then drained the oil and about choked...Milky White Oil. So I changed the oil and ran it around our property maybe 10 mins. Drained again and it is less milky but definitely still there. My first thought was it must be a head gasket but I also read about water pump seals causing the problem. Is there an easy way to settle on which it is? I cant seem to put my hands on a leakdown tester except possibly the harbor freight variety, it is cheap but is it worthwhile for diagnosing this? It is hard for me to believe a headgasket is blown if the bike runs so well and had even a halfway competent rebuild done but...??? Thoughts, Suggestions etc? New Tires(dirt), chain, and a few other things are in the mail. Also, since we all like pictures: