Moto Guy Trying Off-Road - Who's Got Advice?

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6/25/2020 4:59 PM
Edited Date/Time: 6/25/2020 5:00 PM

I've been an MX only rider for the last 10 years, and I'm looking to race a few sprint enduro off-road events in the area just to try something new. Anyone on here have advice for a strictly moto guy looking to compete in sprint enduro races? Bike setup, tire psi, riding technique, etc... Thanks.

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6/25/2020 5:04 PM

Trees move

Don't care what anyone says, trees move

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6/25/2020 5:16 PM

EngIceDave wrote:

Trees move

Don't care what anyone says, trees move

My broken tibia would argue otherwise.

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6/25/2020 5:20 PM

I was a moto guy that went woods for a few years 2009 - 2010. My profile photo is the #1 AMA plate I won in 2010 for the AMA Enduro Series.


- Bounce on the pegs. Use your feet to steer.
- Pace yourself
- gear your moto bike up multiple teeth
- turn your moto suspension rebound all the way in

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Washed up moto and enduro weekend warrior.

6/25/2020 5:26 PM

MxKing809 wrote:

I was a moto guy that went woods for a few years 2009 - 2010. My profile photo is the #1 AMA plate I won in 2010 for the AMA Enduro Series.


- Bounce on the pegs. Use your feet to steer.
- Pace yourself
- gear your moto bike up multiple teeth
- turn your moto suspension rebound all the way in

Do you mean to gear it for higher speed? Like going to a 14 front? (Most MX bikes seem to be 13 stock).

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I ripped a start from Egypt and I was happy about that.

6/25/2020 5:29 PM

It’s all about getting your head over the bars and getting in a groove. I used to make most my passes in the last 15 min.

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6/25/2020 5:46 PM

Assuming its tighter/slower terrain you will want to pretty much let all the compression out of the fork and shock. And for gearing he would mean to go up a couple teeth or 3 on the rear sprocket as an MX bike is normally geared a bit tall for off road. That will allow you to run 2nd and 3rd mostly. Depending how tight it is you'll want full wrap hand guards and don't get cheesy plastic ones, get aluminum with plastic flags. Get a lightweight hydration pack-you don't need something with 47 pockets and a 9L capacity, small and light is where it's at. Get a skid plate if you don't have it too. Otherwise just pace yourself, its easy to blow yourself up in the first 20 min and be smoked the rest of the race.

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6/25/2020 5:57 PM

If it’s a sprint hero / worcs sprint race my best advice is to stay out of the main line That everyone follows thru it’s usually the roughest and most tiresome. Try to carry momentum thru everything just like a moto track and most of all have a shit load of fun!

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6/25/2020 5:58 PM
Edited Date/Time: 6/25/2020 5:59 PM

MxKing809 wrote:

I was a moto guy that went woods for a few years 2009 - 2010. My profile photo is the #1 AMA plate I won in 2010 for the AMA Enduro Series.


- Bounce on the pegs. Use your feet to steer.
- Pace yourself
- gear your moto bike up multiple teeth
- turn your moto suspension rebound all the way in

TeamGreen wrote:

Do you mean to gear it for higher speed? Like going to a 14 front? (Most MX bikes seem to be 13 stock).

Looks like he’s Midwest based, so it’s tight single track I would add multiple teeth to the rear - MXA Style

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Washed up moto and enduro weekend warrior.

6/25/2020 6:06 PM

MxKing809 wrote:

Looks like he’s Midwest based, so it’s tight single track I would add multiple teeth to the rear - MXA Style

Yep, I'm in Indiana. Looking to run some of the Michigan Sprint Enduro events. It's a mix of single track, woods, mx sections, and grass sections.

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6/25/2020 6:30 PM

TeamGreen wrote:

Do you mean to gear it for higher speed? Like going to a 14 front? (Most MX bikes seem to be 13 stock).

MxKing809 wrote:

Looks like he’s Midwest based, so it’s tight single track I would add multiple teeth to the rear - MXA Style

DaBaum44 wrote:

Yep, I'm in Indiana. Looking to run some of the Michigan Sprint Enduro events. It's a mix of single track, woods, mx sections, and grass sections.

Oh shit man! I’ll be running some too. I’m just adding 2 teeth to my CRF450, and running my 150SX stock

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Washed up moto and enduro weekend warrior.

6/25/2020 6:44 PM

MxKing809 wrote:

Oh shit man! I’ll be running some too. I’m just adding 2 teeth to my CRF450, and running my 150SX stock

Right on, see you there! From everyone I've spoken too they are a good time, so I'll find out. Planning on Log Road for sure. Possibly one of the earlier dates too.

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6/25/2020 7:23 PM

If you are riding a motobike in single track, woods or technical rocky/rooted stuff you need to go softer on suspension on both ends or you will be bouncing off everything. At least 1 or 2 teeth larger on rear sprocket. Bark-busters are a must if you ride in woods and want to keep you fingers.Ride standing up and steer with legs, pace yourself and ride smooth with rhythm...riding too aggressive wears you down and screws up pace and rhythm.

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6/25/2020 7:25 PM

Soften the suspension just a tad, look for good lines, and depending how long the race is a Camelback. (Low profile one).

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6/25/2020 7:31 PM

EngIceDave wrote:

Trees move

Don't care what anyone says, trees move

Jeremy Macbeth wrote:

My broken tibia would argue otherwise.

No, once you hit 'em they stop.

They're tricky like that

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6/25/2020 8:19 PM

EngIceDave wrote:

Trees move

Don't care what anyone says, trees move

Jeremy Macbeth wrote:

My broken tibia would argue otherwise.

EngIceDave wrote:

No, once you hit 'em they stop.

They're tricky like that

HAHAHAHHAHHAA.

I was wondering what the hell you meant. Now I get it. Yes, they do!

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6/25/2020 8:20 PM

Get off-road valving for your suspension. It was the best thing I’ve done for converting my bike to offroad. Game changer.

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6/25/2020 8:22 PM

Look up

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6/25/2020 10:03 PM

Camel back. Plenty of sleep the night before.

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6/25/2020 10:06 PM

Cut an inch off both sides of your bars, keep your weight in the middle of your bike while rotating in and out of Trees. hammer the straights as you would in MOTO. Yell at riders slowing you up constantly. Have a bright helmet so those who you yelled at will know when to get out of the way. Have a decent Pit crew to refuel faster (Practice that).... Hammer, have Fun, Drink beer to relax!

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I was a third-string dreamer on a second-place team~ Luke Combs

6/25/2020 10:17 PM

Everything you ever learned in mx was just practice for Offroad. Mx is childhood, Offroad is adulthood .

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6/25/2020 11:06 PM

Two things my old man taught me.

- Dont overshoot corners (it just adds time and distance) and be on the gas earlier powering out of them.

- ALWAYS be forcing and driving yourself to be looking farther forward. Trust in your decision that you already made and let you body and hands handle the spot you are "at" and while your eyes and mind are still focusing on the coming trail.

The more I rode over the years the more I understood this.

Enjoy the view!

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6/25/2020 11:52 PM

MasonMan wrote:

Cut an inch off both sides of your bars, keep your weight in the middle of your bike while rotating in and out of Trees. hammer the straights as you would in MOTO. Yell at riders slowing you up constantly. Have a bright helmet so those who you yelled at will know when to get out of the way. Have a decent Pit crew to refuel faster (Practice that).... Hammer, have Fun, Drink beer to relax!

I was sitting in the pits at Budds one day waiting for my moto and watching the hare scrambles guys going through the woods. One dude was screaming at the other to GTF out of the way. 'What a dick," was my thought. Maybe my opinion would change if I was in his position, but yelling at people doesn't reflect well. It seemed kind of psycho.

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6/26/2020 12:41 AM
Edited Date/Time: 6/26/2020 12:43 AM

MasonMan wrote:

Cut an inch off both sides of your bars, keep your weight in the middle of your bike while rotating in and out of Trees. hammer the straights as you would in MOTO. Yell at riders slowing you up constantly. Have a bright helmet so those who you yelled at will know when to get out of the way. Have a decent Pit crew to refuel faster (Practice that).... Hammer, have Fun, Drink beer to relax!

Sierra Ranger wrote:

I was sitting in the pits at Budds one day waiting for my moto and watching the hare scrambles guys going through the woods. One dude was screaming at the other to GTF out of the way. 'What a dick," was my thought. Maybe my opinion would change if I was in his position, but yelling at people doesn't reflect well. It seemed kind of psycho.

You might get it if you were in his position.... It is so frustrating when you are going to lap someone, o you just had a bad start and someone MUCH slower than you does not get out the way, and the trail is so tight that you have no other line at all.....

And some people just have not common sense at all.... If you have nobody behind you, and all of a sudden you find someone in your back, is because you are in a different race... Get out now.

I am no fast by any means... I am middle pack and I usually get lapped by the fastest guys, I am the first to get aside and left someone who is clearly faster go ahead

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6/26/2020 6:56 AM

MasonMan wrote:

Cut an inch off both sides of your bars, keep your weight in the middle of your bike while rotating in and out of Trees. hammer the straights as you would in MOTO. Yell at riders slowing you up constantly. Have a bright helmet so those who you yelled at will know when to get out of the way. Have a decent Pit crew to refuel faster (Practice that).... Hammer, have Fun, Drink beer to relax!

Sierra Ranger wrote:

I was sitting in the pits at Budds one day waiting for my moto and watching the hare scrambles guys going through the woods. One dude was screaming at the other to GTF out of the way. 'What a dick," was my thought. Maybe my opinion would change if I was in his position, but yelling at people doesn't reflect well. It seemed kind of psycho.

I've lapped a lot of people in my day. Most guys move as quickly and safely as possible, no screaming needed. I would always rev my bike to let them know I was there first. Then I would holler once to get the F out of the way. Third time is a charm and your front tire is getting taken out in the next turn.

Honestly 99% of the guys out there are amazing and very aware of their surroundings. Most of the time it's the chodes riding a 1989 cr 125 wearing denim jeans, wife beater and wolverine work boots who dont get out of the way. Sometimes when you're lapping them for the 3rd-4th time you'll get lucky and they'll be sitting alongside the trail having a cigarette break.

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6/26/2020 7:30 AM
Edited Date/Time: 6/26/2020 7:31 AM

Drop you fork tubes 5mm in the clamps but only if there not flush already. It will make the bike more stable at high speed and move way up on the tank to get through tight turns because it will steer a little slower in tighter turns.

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6/26/2020 7:40 AM

If your running Dutch this weekend, you will be fine on the moto setup. Soften the suspension a tad, not a lot of tight single track down there. Make extra adjustments on your suspension after you run the 2 tests, plenty of time to make adjustment between tests, my advice. I have ran the sprint down there last couple years moto track with grass track fun stuff, enjoy.

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6/28/2020 11:02 PM

Train for the duration of the event and ride at 80% of your max heart rate. Put a digital watch/ heart rate monitor on your bars. Stay hydrated and consume enough calories that you don't bonk. Put a gel or goo on your bars, and use it 15 minutes before you need it. Have fun, If you have the endurance you'll probably do really well.

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6/29/2020 5:20 AM

Suspension re-valved for woods. Bibs and good tires. If you're on an MX bike then go up a tooth or three. Barkbusters and a Good skid plate. Wet roots aren't your friend until you know how to ride them. Maybe a bigger tank YMMV.

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6/29/2020 6:08 AM

Bark Busters and a KTM 200 will put a smile on your face that won't ever go away.

I went from moto to off road in 1980. Still loving the freedom of riding most the day instead of sitting around waiting on motos, ambulance runs, etc.

My tips in no particular order....

- keep your toes up and feet on the pegs. Rocks/stumps/roots will break your feet/knees.
- bark busters are a God send. They save levers and hands from trauma.
- adjust your brakes/clutch so you can use one finger (always on the lever) to instantly actuate.
- ride in a semi crouch, attack position
- ride as smooth as possible. Slower smooth is way faster than overshooting, stalling, restarting.
- Trees do move into your way. But not out of. A 2" sapling tree feels like it is made of 4130 thick wall tubing.
- Wear knee and shoulder amour. Brush a shoulder against a tree on the inside of a corner once and you'll get it.
- Don't over do all the gear and protection. You'll go faster, light and agile, than you do geared up for every possibility.

Have fun. Off road/track, in a sense, is like getting to ride a 2-5 hour moto. Without the do-or-injury type jumps. 52 years after first swinging a leg over a motorcycle at age 13, I'm still loving to be on a dirt bike. Photo is last week on a friends trails.

Photo

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