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Thread: School me on dirtbikes

  1. #1
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    Default School me on dirtbikes

    I've gotten wife approval to replace a project I wasn't touching with a dirtbike. I have no idea where to start. What do I need to know? I've been street riding for 8 years, I have no dirt gear, and I'm lost looking at a sea of used bikes.

    My gut says something Honda/Yamaha/KTM, in the 250-450 range. Likely 4 stroke, but I mean....? My budget for the bike itself is $3000, and if that can't get me a decent starter, then I might be screwed.

    Edit: for example, is this (terrible descripted ad) a good deal?

    https://www.kijiji.ca/v-dirt-bikes-m...008/1509820451
    Last edited by LilDrunkenSmurf; 07-03-2020 at 09:19 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by heavyfuel View Post
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    That's why I just say I have a 4" dick and lift weights to make up for it.

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    Power wise, a 4 stroke 250cc is roughly equivalent to a 125cc 2 stroke and a 450cc 4 stroke is roughly equivalent to a 250cc 2 stroke. I used to race an RM125 around when the 4 stroke bikes were becoming very popular.

    I'd get something Japanese, can't really go wrong with the relevant offerings from Suzuki, Yamaha, Honda, and Kawasaki. Easy to get parts, super reliable, etc. As for which is better, you can read reviews on the specific years you're considering but for the most part they are all fantastic and if you ask 10 people you'll get 10 different answers as to which is the best. I always owned Suzuki's but I'm sure I would have been equally happy with the other 3-4 big brands.

    For riding, you basically have Blackfoot Motosports park or you're driving out to McLean Creek, Waiparous, someone's ranch, etc. If you are riding on trails you will need lights and I think a licence plate. For what it's worth, I started out trail riding but found that all I ever wanted to do was find jumps and go over them repeatedly, so that is how I got into MX haha.

    Obviously you need a truck or trailer, but they are so light you can pull the necessary trailer with basically any vehicle.

    Personally I would never buy a heavily modded or bike that has been raced as it's probably had the shit beat out of it, but some guys like those because they are typically maintained well despite being rough and probably through many crashes.

    If you've never ridden (this type of bike) before or have little experience, I'd suggest starting out with a 250cc 4 stroke. They still have plenty of power, they're easier to ride, you don't have to mix oil with gas every time, and you're less likely to get yourself into trouble. The 450's are quite a bit heavier (+~50lb) and have significantly more power. The 2 strokes are very "peaky" so you have to ride in a more narrow power band and they don't make much power in lower RPM ranges, but when the power hits it's kind of like a turbo haha. The 4 stroke bikes are typically a lot more forgiving with a much wider power band (probably what you're used to with your street bike), and they don't stink like burnt oil.

    Routine maintenance is super easy if you're even slightly mechanically inclined, and for any major work there are plenty of shops in town willing to take your money. Any maintenance you can do with your street bike you can do with your dirt bike probably.

    For gear, assuming you are buying this for Motorcross tracks (if you want to look the part), you need a helmet, goggles, gloves, pants, jersey, knee/shin guards, chest protector, and a nice set of boots. Some guys like to ride with a back support (kidney belt).

    As for what is a good deal, I'll let someone else answer that because I've been out of the market for too long. The nice thing about dirt bikes is there are lots of good used samples out there and not a ton changes year-to-year so you can still get a very decent bike that is 5+ years old.
    Last edited by Mitsu3000gt; 07-03-2020 at 11:21 PM.

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    I’ve been riding my whole life, so I’ll chime in.

    What type of riding will you be doing? If it’s mostly trails like Waiparous and McLean creek, a motocross bike like the YZ is not what you really want. Look for a 250 4 stroke purpose built for off road, like a WR250F, CRF250X, etc.

    If it’s track riding you’re after, that’s a different story.

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    My friend will be selling his Kawasaki KDX 220-R before the end of summer because he's never using it.
    Maybe that's up your alley.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Maxx Mazda View Post
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    I’ve been riding my whole life, so I’ll chime in.

    What type of riding will you be doing? If it’s mostly trails like Waiparous and McLean creek, a motocross bike like the YZ is not what you really want. Look for a 250 4 stroke purpose built for off road, like a WR250F, CRF250X, etc.

    If it’s track riding you’re after, that’s a different story.
    Definitely woods riding over MX.

    Sounds like I want something closer to a WR/DRZ/TTR, something with inverted forks as well. 4-stroke, 250/450.
    Quote Originally Posted by heavyfuel View Post
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    That's why I just say I have a 4" dick and lift weights to make up for it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ThePenIsMightier View Post
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    My friend will be selling his Kawasaki KDX 220-R before the end of summer because he's never using it.
    Maybe that's up your alley.
    Great trail bike and great beginner 2 stroke bike
    Machining, Fabricating, Welding etc.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Maxx Mazda View Post
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    Iíve been riding my whole life, so Iíll chime in.

    What type of riding will you be doing? If itís mostly trails like Waiparous and McLean creek, a motocross bike like the YZ is not what you really want. Look for a 250 4 stroke purpose built for off road, like a WR250F, CRF250X, etc.

    If itís track riding youíre after, thatís a different story.
    X2. The CRFX is a great bike. Have a 450X and its been nothing short of bullet proof.

    also, I ride near Moyie mostly and one of the guys we ride with has a RMZ450 and its a handful in the tight stuff. Best to get a woods/X bike if you plan to stay off the tracks.

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    Agree with many people on here. Stay away from an MX bike, they are a handful in the bush. I still ride a KTM 144SX in the bush, and the amount of clutching and revving to the moon makes it much more difficult.

    The more "bush friendly" XC, X etc bikes typically have a much heavier flywheel, and less aggressive tuning which really helps beginners. Often even less experienced riders will be faster on a track with a "Bush" Bike vs a full blown MX bike. Softer suspension is great and is setup for the masses (MX bikes are really tuned for large jumps etc).

    In the what engine size, my vote is for a 250F. There is nothing that you will encounter that you will need more power than this. I dont care who is riding it, these new EFI 250s run so good, and rev so hard the amount of power they are making is insane.

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    Quote Originally Posted by legendboy View Post
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    Great trail bike and great beginner 2 stroke bike
    Agreed. I’ll never sell my 220 especially now that it’s got modern suspension. Bulletproof, and torquey like a 4 stroke.

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