OFTR | Just Bought a Dirtbike

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OFTR | Just Bought a Dirtbike
Ontario Federation
of Trail Riders
2783 Contau Lake Road,
P.O. Box 257, Gooderham
Ontario. K0M 1R0.
TO:
“So... you’ve just bought a dirt bike!”
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“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”
“So... You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike”!
“So... You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike”!
“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”
“SO … YOU ’VE JUST BOUGHT A DIRT BIKE”, booklet
has been prepared and brought to you by the;
Ontario Federation of Trail Riders,
2783 Contau Lake Road, P.O. Box 257,
Gooderham Ontario. K0M 1R0.
www.oftr.ca
Niagara Timberline Riders
www.timberlineriders.ca
John Gregoire - 905 227 0686
Northumberland Trail Riders
www.oftr.org Barry Ferguson - 905 753 2776
Ontario Dual-Sport Club
www.odsc.on.ca
Al Buck
Oshawa Competition Motorcycle Club
The OFTR wishes to gratefully acknowledge that the
major funding to make this booklet possible was generously provided by:
* Ministry of Transportation Ontario
* Canadian Off-Highway Vehicle Distributors
Council
* Motorcycle & Moped Industry Council
O.F.T.R. Mandate
To source, create and maintain a trail network
in Ontario for safe, family use by offroad motorcyclists as well as any other good intentioned
users. To provide a strong voice supported by a
substantial membership to represent trail users to ensure, to
our best ability, that these trails continue to be available .
www.ocmc-racing.ca
Dan Holmes: 905-987-1719
Otter Ridge Dirt Riders Inc.
www.oftr.org Chris: 519 -874- 4278
Simcoe County Off Road Riders
www.scorra.ca
Wayne Ricketts:
Steel City Riders MC
www.steelcityriders.ca Albert Beamer: 905 772 5516
Thames Valley Riders
www.tvrmx.com
Welland County Motorcycle Club Inc.
DIRT B IKE SCHOOLS AND T RAINING F ACILITES
Ganaraska Trail Tours & School: www.trailtour.com
Canadian Motorcycle Training:
Tracks Offroad :
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www.cmts.org
www.tracksoffroad.ca
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“So... You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike”!
“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”
a slow moving bike with their eyes up, stop it using the brakes, and
hold it up, then try the engine. Starting the engine is easier for them if
Table of Contents
you have warmed it up.
Riding Groups and Clubs in Ontario
Ausable River Riders
www.Ausableriverriders.com
Tyson Howarth: 519 898 5346
Blue Sky Riders
www.blueskyriders.com
Doug Bies:
Bytown Motorcycle Association
www.bytown-motorcycle-assoc.ca Woody Percival: 613 267 6861
Erie Ramblers Motorcycle Club
www.erieramblers.tripod.com
John Bartel:
Great Pine Trail Riders
www.greatpinetrailriders.com
Paul Mooney: 905 697 3646
Haliburton Highlands Trail Riders
www.hhtra.ca
Ken Hoeverman: 705 447 3110
4 6 10 12 14 18 24 26 282930 31 -
The legality of it all
The sport of motorcycling
The right tool for the job
Women in trail riding
Trail etiquette
Tips, tricks and accepted practices
Get involved
Children and motorcycles
Forming a motorcycle club
Where to ride your dirt bike
Riding group/club contacts
Motorcycle Training
Halton Off Road Riders Association
www.horra.ca
Tim Middlehurst - 519-942-0633
Huron Recreational Riders Association
www.hrrasarnia.com/hrra
Tom Schleihauf - 519-542-7680
KW Cyclesport Association
www.kwcyclesport.ca
Steve Topham: 519 742 7294
Lakeshore Dirt Riders
www.ldrmc.ca
This booklet, edition # 3, is edited and authorized for print by the original editors and writers;
Warren Thaxter, Rick Currah, Meg Thorburn, Clinton Smout and Ken Gardner.
The opinions expressed are those of the writers and
not necessarily the opinions of the OFTR or the
sponsors of the booklet.
Dan Holmes
Lynn Valley Dirt Riders
www.execulink.com
Doug Kent - 519-582-1074
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“So... You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike”!
“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”

THE LEGALITY OF IT ALL.
By Warren Thaxter
In Ontario we have a set of laws called the Off-Road Vehicle
Act. Copies of the Off-Road Vehicle Handbook are available for
about $8.00 from the MTO office where you buy your license plates.
This act or law governs off road motorcycles, three and four wheel
ATVs and dune buggies. Powered wheel chairs are exempt but might
not be if they are powered by a performance two-stroke engine and
equipped with knobby tires.
The act is specific in that every vehicle must be registered and
carry a license plate if it is to be used other than the registered owners
property. The license plate is the green one, costs $35.00, attaches to
How to start your own club:
 Find some riders that have a common interest
 Get them communicating in some fashion (Internet is easiest)
Get a consensus on what your goals are and just how much you
want to develop your new club
 Elect (or appoint) an executive to operate the club. If you
want it to last more than one season, your going to need help.
 Get financial support from an umbrella group to help get you
going. We got help from OFTR to fund our first trail repair,
which helped set us up as contenders within the Ganaraska
Forest.
 Delegate. Try and do it all on your own and you will burn
out.
 Sell your club; get out to bike shows, swap meets, etc and
setup a table to show off your club, so you can build membership.
 Talk to other clubs and let them know who you are, and what
your about
 Never, never, never forget what your goals; Stay focused
 Lastly, ride lots and have fun!
I truly enjoyed helping found the GPTR. It is a small club, but one
with a strong voice.
Where to ride your dirt bike ; by Warren Thaxter
Although Ontario is a very large province with thousands of
kilometres of forest road, back road and trail scattered throughout, at
this time there is no comprehensive catalogue of available trails or
trail networks. Don’t despair though, because we do have an abundance of dirt oriented motorcycle clubs in Ontario and all of them can
suggest and guide a novice to acceptable places to ride. Some clubs
actually own their own property, some have agreements to use public
land and most all of the clubs promote riding events for club members
and the public at large.
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“So... You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike”!
“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”
Practice moving very short distances so the child has a chance to master
the throttle while still practicing the skills they learned while you were
pushing them. Gradually back up (you are always in front of them) and
have them ride towards you. Learning in small steps instils confidence,
promotes efficiency and safety.
Safety:
Make sure the area is safe. Stopping the engine should always be with
the engine kill switch and then the ignition key if there is one. They will
go where they look. Try and minimize distractions and don’t yell out
instructions as they ride past.
Fun!
Set easy to attain goals, keep your patience and sense of humour, watch
for fatigue and frustration and let them ride.
B UILDING AN OFF ROAD CLUB
the front of the vehicle and does not require a yearly renewal sticker.
At this time it’s not necessary to have any kind of operators permit or license to ride a bike or ATV offroad. To operate a motorcycle
on the street, or a dirt road, an M, M2 or M1 endorsement is mandatory.
The next requirement is insurance,
which is also mandatory when the vehicle leaves the registered owners property. The basic insurance requirements
are Third Party PL & PD, and costs will vary
ass on private
Do not tresp
e on e xisting
property. Rid
trails.
significantly from company to company. Some insurance companies
will not even offer such a policy. Many agents want you to bring all
your other insurance requirements to them before they will sell the
Offroad Policy. Primmum, through the MMIC offers reasonable,
stand alone insurance rates for off-road vehicles. State Farm is an-
By Ken Gardner
The concept and development of the Great Pine Trail Riders.
other company which offers decent rates for these vehicles. The best
option is to ask, and shop around.
In 2002 a small group of recreational off road riders in Durham Region
decided to form a non competitive club to support Off Road Motorcycle
use within the Ganaraska Forest. Our goals were to encourage families
I wonder how many people realize the penalty for operating a
vehicle without insurance is presently $5000.00. This is not a misprint. The fine is equal to the price of a good used motorcycle. An
to come out and ride, to educate all forest users on proper behavior
within the forest, to preserve and enhance the dirt bike image within the
exception to the license plate and insurance rule is, if the owner belongs to an organization and engages in sanctioned, closed course
community by being ambassadors of our sport, to maintain and improve
the trail network and create a strong working relationship with the Forest Authority.
competition, (motocross / hare scrambles) This however doesn’t allow the owner to use the vehicle except at that sanctioned event.
Some offroad or dual sport motorcycles carry street plates and are
To date, we have achieved our goals, and continue to build on this foundation.
then automatically governed by the Highway Traffic Act. When possible a motorcycle should be licensed in this manner as it opens doors
Was it easy? Yes….and no. Volunteers have to give up a lot of personal
time, which is difficult in today’s society. Was it worth it? Was it satisfying? “Yes!”
to a lot of country that a rider with a strictly offroad plate couldn’t
legally encounter.
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“So... You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike”!
If you have ever been to an enduro competition you will have
seen street plates on a lot of questionable bikes, and may have wondered how this was possible. It is a grey area which some riders and
dealers are willing to take advantage of. It requires a bike to be upgraded to receive a ‘Safety Certificate’ and requires such things as
lights, brake lights, mirror, horn, road legal tires, etc.
Contrary to popular belief knobby tires are not necessarily illegal for
road use. Most tire companies offer a line of knobby tires with a DOT
number. These tires often appear identical to tires which bear the
words ‘Not For Highway Use’ but can be considered street legal.
Although there is a general reluctance to register used bikes, mostly in
an effort to save on the sales tax, it’s actually a good idea as an ownership certificate is absolute proof of ownership
“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”
they comfortably reach the ground? Are they physically and emotionally
mature enough? Children often have a ‘no fear’ attitude which can enhance the learning curve, but sometimes parents must fill in the missing
caution filter for better safety.
What should they ride?
UIE T!
r bike Q roun d!
u
yo
ep
Ke
or e g
A child’s first bike should have mild
nd = M
e ss sou
L
power delivery and a speed governing
device (throttle or exhaust). A minibike or
motorcycle designed for racing will have a much steeper learning curve.
Where should they ride?
Check with dealerships, associations and clubs for safe, legal locations.
The area should be relatively flat, without challenging terrain. Field
with short grass is ideal, but check for gopher holes, rocks or any hidden
obstacles.
What should they wear?
THE SPORT OF MOTORCYCLING
The most important item to buy is a full face helmet (fitted by a profes-
By Warren Thaxter
Being a spectator at a motorcycle race can be a very enjoyable
experience, but like going to a movie, there are
many flavors of motorcycle activity. Following is
a brief description of motorcycle activities which a
person might find in Ontario.
sional). Other gear needs are goggles, elbow pads, jersey, knee pads,
gloves, full length pants, and sturdy, above-the-ankle boots. The smallest motocross boots may be too tall for the young rider’s legs. If the
boots cover and limit the knee’s rotation, then a strong hiking boot
would be better. Please, no running shoes! Children grow fast and the
proper gear is expensive, but buying big to economize is dumb. The
proper fit is important for their performance and safety.
Teaching your child to ride:
Motocross Racing:
Motocross uses a special high performance,
one-dimensional type of motorcycle which is specially designed for
You may be a great rider, but the worst instructor for your own children.
If you are determined to teach your own, then please, consider the
this activity. The course or track used is in an open area and is comprised of jumps, bumps, hills and turns. The course is usually about
KISSF principal. Keep It Safe, Simple, Safe and Fun!
10 miters wide and a kilometer or so in length and may loop back and
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Simple:
Explain how to put the brakes on, proper body positioning and keeping
the eyes up. Practice on a stationary bike without it running. The next
step is to push the child slowly in a straight
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27 line. Once they can balance
“So... You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike”!
the saddle and clear trail or run a
checkpoint. Ride the sweep position
ordin g
s only acc
il
tra
e
s
U
es inrm itted us
t o t h e pe
s ar e
om e trail
dicated. S
.
season al
“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”
forth in a small area of property. The course is defined with wooden
stakes and caution ribbon or straw bales. Motocross tracks are usually
or shepherd the novice group on a
trail ride.
The only way this sport will evolve and mature is through orga-
located on rough hilly agriculture land which is too rough to cultivate.
Occasionally temporary tracks are built inside stadiums or arenas and
the sport is then called, Super Cross. These types of tracks offer ex-
nizing. Many of us look at the Ontario Federation of Snowmobile
Clubs (OFSC) with awe. The Sledders have a trail system and organ-
cellent spectating as the entire track can be seen
from one location.
izational machine that is the envy of other motorized groups. They
deserve our respect. Snowmobilers realized in the early days, the
benefits of forming a provincial body to govern and guide their
petitor who can circumvent the course quickest is the winner.
sport’s future. Every fall, thousands of enthusiasts lay down their cash
for an annual trail pass. No hard sell by the OFSC and no grumbling
by the members. It is a recognized fact of life for a snowmobiler that
to enjoy the trail system you must belong to a club and buy a pass.
This mindset and the resulting success did not happen overnight.
Our struggle to survive into the 21st Century will be easier when
all off road motorcyclists realize the necessity of joining a club and
applying themselves to the promotion and preservation of the sport.
I can make you a promise. Get involved with an active club for
one year and you will not regret the time given. You will enjoy yourself and feel good about the group contribution made. You will renew
the second year.
CHILDREN AND MOTORCYCLES
By Clinton Smout
I started riding thirty five years ago on a friend’s minibike. His in-
n
Re spect
ature
Motocross is most certainly a race. The comHare Scramble:
Hare Scramble is a cross-country type of event encompassing
every type of obstacle available such as hills, trees, rocks, logs,
streams and jumps. This event is always in a wooded or bush lot area.
The course is a single track of about a meters in width and 2 to 10
kilometers in length. This event has a usual duration of 2 hours. Whoever completes the most laps in the given time wins. The machinery
used for this event is enduro or pleasure/trail riding motorcycles, motocross bikes and dual purpose motorcycles. Spectating at a hare
scramble takes some effort and usually requires walking part of the
course.
Enduro:
A motorcycle enduro is a competition event but it is not a
race! Enduro is a timed event similar to a rally using terrain similar to
Hare Scramble. The object is to circumvent a secret course, usually
100 -160 kilometers in length, at a predetermined speed schedule.
structions were, “just give her”. Well, that worked, but there is a better way.
Traveling faster (early) carries a penalty 5 times greater than traveling
slow (late). The winner of this event is not determined by top speed
but is the competitor who is assigned the least number of infractions
Is your child ready to ride?
or points.
Can they ride a two wheeled bicycle (without training wheels)? Can
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“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”
Enduro uses legally licensed motorcycles and traverse some
public roads to go from section to section. The speed on road sections
lapse. Slowly, I met fellow riders, who like me, love riding aimlessly
through the woods. Chumming around these riders re-
is much lower than the speed limit, usually 36 kilometers per hour.
The machinery used for enduro is the enduro bike, pleasure/trail riding bike or the dual sport type of street bike.
sulted in me joining the OFTR. What I have
coh ol or
Do not use any Al
learned and experienced through my ino ride.
Drugs if you plan t
volvement, has been more than worth the
Spectating at an enduro is usually limited to visiting fuel
stops but some organizers provide directions to spectator points.
annual dues.
Individuals can be passionate but achieve little. Many
Motorcycle Trial:
A trial is a motorcycle contest which is absolutely not a race
or speed contest. Trials is sometimes referred to as, ‘ballet on
wheels’. A trial is a contest of balance, ability, timing and fitness.
The course is similar to hare scramble but the optimum area
would include very large rocks and boulders, ledges and near vertical
riders can work together and realize their goals. A club can host an
event and raise funds for charity or the rental of riding land. New
members can learn riding and maintenance tips from the veterans.
Gear and machines can be traded between members and travel accommodations shared.
rock walls of which riders ride over and around. Machinery used for
this type of event are quite specialized but of low performance and
Club Representatives can be sent to municipal and provincial
government to protest unfair laws and legislation. Clubs can be selfpolicing. Peer pressure can modify the behaviour of unruly members
very quiet. The applause of spectators is usually louder than the motorcycles.
who antagonize authorities and land owners.
It is puzzling why some riders are reluctant to join a club. Per-
Flat Track Racing:
Flat Track racing requires an oval dirt track which is similarly used for horse racing. This type of racing often accompanies
country fairs. The machinery is very high performance, usually hand
built and one dimensional. Viewing is usually done from a grandstand from which the entire track can be seen. The noise and high
speed activity make this form of racing very exciting.
Ice Racing:
As the name implies this is a contest of speed on a twisty or
oval course on a frozen lake or pond. The machinery used ranges
from the pleasure trail bike to the high performance flat track bike and
includes motocross bikes. The weather is the limiting factor to enjoy8
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haps, they feel an organization would cramp their style and infringe
on their riding time by insisting on participation in club activities. My
reply to that is to imagine all the free time they will have when the
riding areas are off-limits because no large group protested illconceived land closures.
It is not just enough to join a club. Be willingly involved in the
activities and recruit new riders to the cause. Volunteer for committee
positions or become a director. While it may seem life is hectic already, it is time everyone gives to the sport they enjoy. We all have to
earn our keep. Riders who freeload off others quickly get a bad reputation and rightly so. If you are one of those riders who always ride
the events and never work one in return, you are losing out. Get off
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“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”
pass and slow to the speed of the lower value and get straightened up
and collected and then increase the speed back to the original value
and motor on down the trail.
Read the Manual.
All of the little technical facts you would like to know about your
motorcycle; things such as how much oil does the gear-box hold, what
weight of fork oil should you use, what should the chain tension be,
are all printed in a booklet titled, “Owners Manual.” Read it! Maybe
read it twice.
If you purchased a used motorcycle and didn’t get the manual, scoot
down to your dealer and order one. If you are buying a used bike,
insist that the owners manual and tool kit be included, or knock a hundred dollars off of the price. The manual and tool kit will usually be
produced when there is some value attached.
GET INVOLVED
By Rick Currah
Speedway Racing:
This is a very specialized form of flat track racing and uses
specialty-built motorcycles with high powered engines in lightweight
frames and no brakes. Speedway is a very exciting form of racing.
Road Racing:
Road racing is a speed contest with a specially prepared
street motorcycle. This type of racing requires a paved surface such
as found in airports, parking lots and temporarily closed streets of a
town or city.
Drag Racing:
Motorcycle drag racing is usually held in conjunction with
automobile drag racing. Drag racing is preformed on a straight,
smooth and level strip of pavement usually 1/4 mile in length. This is
simply an acceleration contest between two competitors at a time.
The fastest competitor from each race moves on to the next competitor etc.
I left trail riding in the late seventies, caught in the scramble to
establish myself in career and marriage. I returned in 1990 to find a
sport that has not matured. Land has been lost due to urban growth
and questionable court decisions. Legal issues have every landowner
quaking in their boots and the sale of NO TRESPASSING signs has
never been better. I was fairly shocked. I knew things were tough but
I had no idea it was so bad. The closest legal riding area was over an
hour from home.
Looking for a support group to aid me in my quest for knowledge and riding areas, I joined a club. It was heavily focused on competition and since I am not a racer, after a year I let my membership
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ing this type of motorcycle racing.
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Trail Riding:
Trail riding on a motorcycle is no different than doing so on
a horse or mountain bicycle. Trail riding is done all over the province wherever trails are found. In Ontario we are very fortunate to
have a sponsored series of organized trail rides which consists of
more than a dozen organized events across the province each year.
Trail riding is done with pleasure/trail bikes or dual sport motorcycles
and are not races.
Learning:
In order to speed up the learning process many affiliated clubs
offer rider training and Ontario has three commercial trail riding
schools. (See page # 31)
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“So... You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike”!
“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”
THE RIGHT TOOL FOR THE RIGHT JOB.
By Warren Thaxter
First time trail bike buyers almost always ask, "What’s the best
bike to buy? This question is like asking which flavor of ice cream is
best. Even asking which is the most popular, is somewhat misleading.
Vanilla in the case of ice cream, and motocross in the case of motorcycles are unquestionably the most popular. A quick check of for-sale
ads always show an abundance of MX bikes for sale. Does this mean
motocross bikes
are best? No, it
just means there
12 PSI to keep from getting punctures.
Keep it clean.
Who said cleanliness was next to godliness?
We don’t know either, but we do know the value of
keeping a dirt bike clean. When cleaning your bike
loose fittings are noted before they are lost. Bent or
damaged components are observed and can be
straightened or replaced before they wear out something even more
expensive. There are many techniques to wash a bike and laying the
bike on it’s side to get at the underside is a common practice. If you
don’t agree with laying your bike on it’s side as part of the wash cycle, then lay it down after you think it is clean and take a look. End of
subject.
Passing riders
Unless you are absolutely the slowest trail rider in the country it's
are more of them
on the market.
Motocross motor-
inevitable that you will at times overtake other riders. The very fact
that you have overcome another rider on the trail should be proof that
cycles are extremely well de-
you are travelling at a quicker pace. Some interesting things often
occur in this situation though. The slower rider may speed-up in an
effort to not impede the catching rider which, impedes the catching
veloped and finely
tuned pieces of
racing machinery.
rider!
The quicker rider often errs as well. If the slower rider is travel-
With the enormous amount of
ing at a value of 10 and the catching rider is going a value of 11 the
catching rider will often increase his speed to 12 as soon as the pass is
completed only to crash or run off the trail within seconds. The posi-
time and money
needed to develop
them it is there-
tive thing here is that the quicker rider will probably get another
chance to practice his passing after he has extracted himself from the
fore necessary to
sell large numbers
topography.
A more sensible way might be for the quicker rider make the
10
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“So... You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike”!
“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”
cause of big wheels dirt bikes can traverse big obstacles with relative
ease, though if the front wheel is allowed to wander, all is lost. Getting moving in rocky terrain is very, very difficult and it is usually
much easier to exert maximum effort to keep moving in the first
place. Dabbing with your feet may help to maintain balance and maintain forward motion but standing on the pegs is better is usually better.
Find the center.
Modern dirt bikes are quite light and a riders gross weight has a
lot of influence on how, where and when the bike responds. A riders
weight should be in the exact centre of the motorcycle and all input
should be from there. The exact centre by the way, is at the foot pegs,
so when a rider is standing their weight is centred. When a rider is
seated the weight is not centred. Watch any good dirt rider or racer
and you will see that they spend most of their time in a standing position. From this position all movement has an effect on the motorcycle.
From this position, slightly lifting the right foot loads the left and immediately steers the bike left. Lift the other foot and the opposite happens. Leaning backward loads the rear wheel and leaning forward
loads the front and unloads the rear wheel.
Sitting down and forward just before a turn loads the front tire
and increases traction. This also compresses the forks which changes
the geometry somewhat and increases steering input. Loading the
outside foot peg on a tight turn helps keep the wheels planted and
discourages the bike from sliding out or low-siding.
Tire pressure
Dirt bike tires operate on relatively low air pressures. Sand terrain is easier negotiated with low pressures of 6 to 10 PSI. For harder
terrain 10 to 12 PSI is required and rocky terrain requires more than
to cover the cost of retooling each year. If motocross bikes were
only sold to motocross racers there would only be a need for about
1/4 as many as there are and the cost to purchase one would be astronomical. Buying the wrong bike just because it was super cheap
or because there was an abundance of them
on the market, is
poor thinking.
Ex pect a
nd Respect oth
ers
who have t he
rig
the tra ils. Be ht to b e o n
co urt eous to
others.
In Ontario I would guess we
might have at most, a few dozen
riders who can actually ride a motocross motorcycle to its full potential in the woods.
For everyone else you're just slipping your clutch and would ride
100% better and enjoy the sport more with a more appropriate bike.
Even reasonably good riders find that to ride an MX bike on the
trails requires so much attention, that some of the enjoyment of the
ride is lost.
Why MX bikes do not make good trail bikes!
Motocross bikes have close ratio gear boxes, designed for
keeping the engine revs at or near the point of peak horsepower,
which is not so good though for finding optimum traction under
stringent conditions often found when trail riding. Motocross bikes
have small gas tanks, no side stands, no electrical output so no
lights, no spark arresters and usually loud exhaust, minimal fender
coverage and extremely stiff suspension.
Motocross bikes have close-ratio transmissions which don't
allow a bike to be ridden really slow without a lot of clutch slipping.
In Close-ratio gear sets, high gear is very low and fast trails or forest
roads must be ridden at an engine speed that vibrates your fillings
loose. Motocross bikes have 19” rear wheels which are more susceptible to flat tires in rocky conditions. They just weren't designed
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“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”
for sustained travel at these speeds.
ally builds a berm or windrow of loose sand. When the berm becomes
great enough the wheel will respond immediately. The only trick to
WOMEN IN TRAIL RIDING,
By Meg Thorburn
There are some wonderfully fast and tough women in off-road
steering in loose sand is to learn that soon after a negative no-traction
situation, there will be a strong opposing positive action. Being ready
for and harnessing the positive action will allow a person to steer in
loose sand with ease. Again, this will become a learned process.
n, pa ck
u pa ck i eave t he
yo
r
ve
te
W ha
and l
ot litter
d it.
out. Do n r than yo u fou n
te
et
b
place
motorcycling. And then there’s the rest of us. Chances are, if you’re a
woman rider, you didn’t pick up the sport from your teenage buddies.
If you’re lucky, your Dad got you started. Most of us got introduced
The secret to straight line stability
in loose sand is to use a ‘leading throttle’. When the twist grip is turned to a
to dirt biking by our male partners, well past the age of fearlessness (if
we ever had it).
point where all slack in the throttle cable and throttle slide is used.
The entire drive-line is tight and the bike is almost, but not quite, ac-
I love this sport. And I work hard at it. So do several of my
girlfriends. But most of us just don’t get better nearly as quickly as
the guys do. For a
celerating.
This is a leading throttle and everything from the twist-grip to
the ground is positive. If the twist-grip is turned off, even for a sec-
long time, I found
this really frustrat-
ond, everything from there to the ground is upset. All of the positive
forces are now negated and the bike will feel unhinged. The force
ing. Finally I accepted it, but I kept
wondering why.
which was driving the wheels forward are now actually dragging everything backwards. This is a trailing throttle. To maintain a leading
throttle sometimes it is desirable to drag the rear brake slightly. The
Then one day, I
was standing in my
next time you are out for a ride try it, even on solid terrain the effect
can be felt.
driveway, working
on my bike, when
several 7 or 8-
Rocks
People who learn to ride in very rocky terrain quickly become
good riders or quit the sport. The same might be said for any difficult
year-old boys happened by on their
terrain though. Riders beginning to ride in easier terrain have some
difficulty when first encountering more difficult topography. Rock
bicycles. They
weren’t headed
anywhere; they
riding requires concentration, perseverance, momentum and the ability to look far ahead, pick lines and not deviate from those lines. Be12
Join O.F.T.R…...
…..www.oftr.ca
21
“So... You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike”!
“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”
very quickly and equipment failures such as a flat tire can really spoil
your day. Plan ahead and carry enough tools to be able to do rudimen-
were just playing around on their bikes - popping wheelies, jumping
on and off the curbs, spinning around. They built a big ramp and
tary trail maintenance. A simple tool kit can be stowed on the rear
fender or carried by the rider in a fanny pack. Walking home isn’t
much fun!
jumped over it repeatedly, often crashing. During this, a couple of
little girls also rode by on their bicycles, on the sidewalk, looking
straight ahead, going to some destination. “That’s it”, I realized. Lit-
Know your bikes limits
Know how far your bike can go on a full tank of fuel. Dirt bikes
tle boys have fun taking physical
chances. Teenage boys have fun
les
few other vehic
Rememb er t hat
s,
so
ike
s
b
le
a
rab
are as maneuve
.
oom
of
r
ts
rs
lo
give o the
are not equipped with fuel gauges so a rider must mentally monitor
the fuel usage. Many bikes have a reserve feature on the petcock but
this is not an auxiliary fuel tank. It is simply a warning that some time
taking physical chances. Imagine the
kind of hand-eye coordination, the
quick reflexes they’ve learned by the time
in the near future your carburetor will be sucking wind and the rider
will either be pushing or begging someone for fuel.
puberty hits, and neural networks start slowly settling into fixed patterns.
Take a brake
Learn to use the front brake as well as the rear. Many novice
riders are afraid that using the front brake will get them into trouble.
Well, there’s not much I can do about that. I realize that I have a
certain clumsiness and level of fear that I will never overcome - and
that slows me down. But I learned a more important lesson from
Well, yes it can, but the front brake will also stop the bike in a fraction of the distance of the rear brake alone and the reason for having
those boys that day - MAKE IT FUN! Don’t say “I can’t do
that” (that = get up that slippery hill, get down that slimy cliff, ride
brakes in the first place is to, stop. Use only one or two fingers on the
front brake lever and always apply the brake smoothly. Grabbing a
handful of front brake will surely be a cause of grief.
over that pile of boulders, clear that gigantic log, get through that
stinking mud bog, cross that rushing river, etc., etc.). How do you
know if you haven’t tried? At least go for it, and go for it with a big
Riding in Sand
Riding in wet sand is pure nirvana with nearly positive and pre-
grin, yelling “Yahoo”!
So here’s some important tips for my fellow female riders:
dictable traction, a rider seems to be connected to the ground. Steering braking and acceleration is so positive and predictable as to instil
confidence. Take away the moisture and sand can become very diffi-
1. Learn to love obstacles.
2. Learn how to do at least basic maintenance on your bike (I
know, I know - most of us didn’t grow up tinkering - but it’s really
cult. Loose dry sand offers almost no traction. Steering input to the
front wheel will at first have no influence and then way too much in-
straightforward to change a spark plug, change your oil, clean your air
filter, change a tire - reluctance is the enemy of learning).
fluence as the front wheel jackknives and creates severe over-steer.
What actually happens is when the front wheel is turned the tire actu-
3. Always carry a basic tool kit when you ride.
4. Carry some treats when you ride, in case somebody else ends
20
Join O.F.T.R…...
…..www.oftr.ca
13
“So... You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike”!
“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”
up using your tool kit to fix your bike.
5. Join an off-road motorcycling club.
of the rear wheel relieves pressure on the transmission gears and the
shift lever easily snicks downward and the lower gear is found. Not
6. If it’s a male partner who’s introduced you to this sport, try,
for the sake of your relationship, to get his friends - not him - to teach
you to ride.
knowing which gear the transmission was in necessitates doing this
exercise until no more lower gears can be found. At this time a small
amount of upward pressure is applied to the shift lever while the bike
7. Find a female riding buddy; go out and ride without the guys
as much as you can.
is again jiggled forward or backward and
t an d
ear a h elme
the transmission should snick into neuAlways w
e off
ak
(T
ety gea r.
af
r
s
he
ot
o
tral. Neutral is confirmed when the
f y ou talk t
ur h elmet i
yo
clutch is released and the bike can be
som eo ne)
easily moved a couple of inches forward
8. Until you feel competent, ride the lowest (and calmest) bike
you can. Lower the bike if necessary. Slide up the front forks and
add a lowering link or a spacer to the rear suspension.
9. Ride every organized trail ride you
can.
with no engine drag.
Learn to start
10. Try an enduro.
11. If you’re not already doing so,
exercise regularly and get stronger.
Sounds easy but again practice is needed to smoothly achieve
this act. Revving the engine to half throttle and dumping the clutch
will get one moving forward but unless it’s a racing situation, this
12. Ride responsibly and always remember - you ride because
it’s FUN!
tends to make a person look like a dork. A more civilized way to start
is to ease out the clutch until partial clutch engagement tries to move
See you on the trails!
the bike forward. At this time more throttle can be smoothly applied
while the clutch lever is slowly but fully released. Smooth starts are a
sign of an accomplished rider. Jackrabbit starts accent the fact that the
TRAIL ETIQUETTE
By Rick Currah
Whether a novice or experienced rider, you should realize
that from the moment you are seen with your motorcycle, you are an
Ambassador Of The Sport. How the general public and the authorities judge you is how the sport is perceived. This can begin with the
transporting of yourself and your bike to the riding area. Reckless
behavior on the road will lead others to assume an attitude of uncaring
indifference or worse, hostile disapproval. Ensure that your bike and
14
Join O.F.T.R…...
rider is beginner.
Park it
An accomplished rider will usually snick the transmission into
neutral as they come to a stop and unless the bike is being parked on
an incline, it is an accepted practice to leave the bike in neutral. Trail
bikes, by the way, are equipped with side stands allowing them to be
parked anywhere.
Plan for a breakdown.
Modern trail bikes can get a person far away from civilization
…..www.oftr.ca
19
“So... You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike”!
“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”
your engine to gain their attention. Even when the front rider acknowledges your intent to pass, wait for a safe area to do so. Accelerate evenly while passing them and avoid displays of horsepower. No
one appreciates a helmet full of dirt and a barrage of rocks. Should
faster riders approach from behind, ride off the trail when possible or
signal them (with a wave of your left hand) that it is safe to pass you
outside the trail.
Unnecessary speed on two-track trails and forest access roads is
very dangerous both to you and other forest users. It also sends a very
negative image of the sport and those who participate. The main roads
large enough for automotive traffic should be avoided if at all possible. You have purchased a TRAIL BIKE.
TIPS , TRICKS AND ACCEPTED PRACTICES.
N
By Warren Thaxter
eutral First! Finding neutral is a practice, which like most
of motorcycling, must be learned. With modern electric
start motorcycles being able to easily find neutral isn’t as important as
it is with manual start engines, though having the transmission in neutral eliminates clutch drag and allows the bike to be started or easily
moved.
The shift pattern on all modern motorcycles is the same; first
gear is found moving the shift lever down and the rest of the gears are
found by moving the shift lever up. Neutral is located between 1st
gear and 2nd gear. Finding neutral can be achieved by stomping the
shift lever down repeatedly and then moving the lever up a half notch.
A more humane system for finding neutral is to pull in the
clutch, apply some gentle down pressure on the shift lever while
gear are secure and trailers (if used) have the full compliment of
working signal lights and fenders.
Follow The Rules
If an area is off-limits to mechanized traffic, then obey the authorities. Never ride on private land without permission. Upon reaching the riding area, park your vehicle in such
a manner as to prevent blocking the road
a lot of
Other groups do
espect
g-r
or trail. It is not advised to park close to
trail groomin
rts
effo
their
a trailhead. Riders exiting a trail, unaware of your vehicles presence, may collide with it.
License it.
License and insure your bike and carry proof of such. Buy a forest membership if necessary and proudly display it on your vehicle.
Park in the designated area, camp and only light fires if allowed. If
you smoke, be careful with your cigarette butts. During the dry summer fire season, the forest floor is a tinderbox of needles and brush. A
carelessly tossed butt could spark a firestorm that would endanger life
and destroy property. The best solution is to leave your smokes at
your base and remove the threat altogether.
Keep a neat base camp. Do not litter or exhibit loud behavior.
Do not “pit-race” about the lot or on adjacent side roads. If other forest users are lunching, it is a good idea to exchange greetings and start
you machines after you have pushed them away from the immediate
area. Upon returning, kill your engine and coast into the lot. Noise is
our biggest enemy. Keep your bike exhaust quiet and maintain the
packing in all silencers. More noise does not always equal more
power.
physically moving the bike forward or backward an inch. Movement
18
Join O.F.T.R…...
…..www.oftr.ca
15
“So... You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike”!
“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”
Respect all Forest Users and Wildlife
This cannot be emphasized enough. Hikers and mountain bikers
tools, even if you are not mechanically minded. A fanny pack or
fender bag will hold what is needed to solve most trailside repairs and
should be approached slowly, safely and courteously. Those who
would bar us from the forests would like nothing better than the sight
of a motorcyclist roosting hikers and bikers, chasing deer, spooking
turn a ride -stopping mishap into nothing to worry about. Experienced
riders will be more willing to assist you in repairs IF they see you
have made an attempt to equip yourself. Do not leave home with a
equestrians or farm animals. Horses are simple-minded creatures,
which will throw a rider or rear up when scared by movement or
noise. SHUT OFF ALL MACHINES when approaching horses and
coast off the trail. Exchange greetings in a low tone of voice and be
polite. Remove your helmet slowly and the horse will recognize you
bike in questionable repair. In the old days a
all legislation,
rider could shoot and eat his horse if
C om ply w ith
urance
bylaws and ins
necessary. Motorcycles that quit far
requirem en ts
from the parking lot are very difficult to
extract from the trail. Carry a towrope at all
as human. Allow the equestrians to clear the area BEFORE starting
your bike. Horses do not come equipped with kill switches and are to
times. Use it to tow a disabled machine or pull bikes up difficult
slopes.
be treated with respect as you would any large, powerful animal.
Respect the Environment
While this may seem impossible, it is not. Always keep on the
Do not ride alone. Whether you are a novice or an experienced
rider, always ride with a companion. A simple fall or breakdown can
result in injury and a long hike out. It is at times like that, that a help-
trails and avoid marshes and water crossings if possible. Churning a
creek bed into loose mud will kill aquatic life and marshes are the
ing hand is appreciated. The fastest riders should lead and the slowest
riders bring up the tail. A novice riding ahead of a faster rider will
homes to countless fragile creatures. The damage takes a long time for
nature to repair (if ever) and is evident for others to see and report.
Watch an experienced rider approach these areas and note that he will
only feel pressured into riding too hard for their abilities and the faster
rider will forever run too close to the novice and spoiling both their
rides. Each rider has a rhythm, a flow to his or her acceleration and
seek firm, high ground and avoid wheel-spin if at all possible. They
are conserving energy, machinery and nature.
braking. Once familiar with your companion’s rhythm, you should
place everyone on the trail accordingly.
Dress in the Appropriate Clothing.
Always wear a helmet, gloves, goggles and sturdy boots. Loose
clothing has a bad habit of catching on moving sprockets and the foli-
At all trail intersections, the lead rider should stop and let the
followers regroup. This way, no one is left behind due to injury or
mechanical breakdown. Allow the last rider a few minutes to catch
age. Wear fabrics that breathe well and stay warm when wet. Carry
water at all times. In this sport, one can dehydrate quickly, regardless
their breath before proceeding. It may slow down the day but a rider
who crashes due to exhaustion will ruin the day also. When participat-
of the season. Heat stroke or heat prostration is very real threats.
Learn the symptoms and how to treat them. Carry a small variety of
ing in organized rides, observe proper procedure when passing others.
Approach the rider ahead with caution. Shout out, “HELLO!” or rev
16
Join O.F.T.R…...
…..www.oftr.ca
17
“So... You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike”!
“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”
Respect all Forest Users and Wildlife
This cannot be emphasized enough. Hikers and mountain bikers
tools, even if you are not mechanically minded. A fanny pack or
fender bag will hold what is needed to solve most trailside repairs and
should be approached slowly, safely and courteously. Those who
would bar us from the forests would like nothing better than the sight
of a motorcyclist roosting hikers and bikers, chasing deer, spooking
turn a ride -stopping mishap into nothing to worry about. Experienced
riders will be more willing to assist you in repairs IF they see you
have made an attempt to equip yourself. Do not leave home with a
equestrians or farm animals. Horses are simple-minded creatures,
which will throw a rider or rear up when scared by movement or
noise. SHUT OFF ALL MACHINES when approaching horses and
coast off the trail. Exchange greetings in a low tone of voice and be
polite. Remove your helmet slowly and the horse will recognize you
bike in questionable repair. In the old days a
all legislation,
rider could shoot and eat his horse if
C om ply w ith
urance
bylaws and ins
necessary. Motorcycles that quit far
requirem en ts
from the parking lot are very difficult to
extract from the trail. Carry a towrope at all
as human. Allow the equestrians to clear the area BEFORE starting
your bike. Horses do not come equipped with kill switches and are to
times. Use it to tow a disabled machine or pull bikes up difficult
slopes.
be treated with respect as you would any large, powerful animal.
Respect the Environment
While this may seem impossible, it is not. Always keep on the
Do not ride alone. Whether you are a novice or an experienced
rider, always ride with a companion. A simple fall or breakdown can
result in injury and a long hike out. It is at times like that, that a help-
trails and avoid marshes and water crossings if possible. Churning a
creek bed into loose mud will kill aquatic life and marshes are the
ing hand is appreciated. The fastest riders should lead and the slowest
riders bring up the tail. A novice riding ahead of a faster rider will
homes to countless fragile creatures. The damage takes a long time for
nature to repair (if ever) and is evident for others to see and report.
Watch an experienced rider approach these areas and note that he will
only feel pressured into riding too hard for their abilities and the faster
rider will forever run too close to the novice and spoiling both their
rides. Each rider has a rhythm, a flow to his or her acceleration and
seek firm, high ground and avoid wheel-spin if at all possible. They
are conserving energy, machinery and nature.
braking. Once familiar with your companion’s rhythm, you should
place everyone on the trail accordingly.
Dress in the Appropriate Clothing.
Always wear a helmet, gloves, goggles and sturdy boots. Loose
clothing has a bad habit of catching on moving sprockets and the foli-
At all trail intersections, the lead rider should stop and let the
followers regroup. This way, no one is left behind due to injury or
mechanical breakdown. Allow the last rider a few minutes to catch
age. Wear fabrics that breathe well and stay warm when wet. Carry
water at all times. In this sport, one can dehydrate quickly, regardless
their breath before proceeding. It may slow down the day but a rider
who crashes due to exhaustion will ruin the day also. When participat-
of the season. Heat stroke or heat prostration is very real threats.
Learn the symptoms and how to treat them. Carry a small variety of
ing in organized rides, observe proper procedure when passing others.
Approach the rider ahead with caution. Shout out, “HELLO!” or rev
16
Join O.F.T.R…...
…..www.oftr.ca
17
“So... You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike”!
“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”
your engine to gain their attention. Even when the front rider acknowledges your intent to pass, wait for a safe area to do so. Accelerate evenly while passing them and avoid displays of horsepower. No
one appreciates a helmet full of dirt and a barrage of rocks. Should
faster riders approach from behind, ride off the trail when possible or
signal them (with a wave of your left hand) that it is safe to pass you
outside the trail.
Unnecessary speed on two-track trails and forest access roads is
very dangerous both to you and other forest users. It also sends a very
negative image of the sport and those who participate. The main roads
large enough for automotive traffic should be avoided if at all possible. You have purchased a TRAIL BIKE.
TIPS , TRICKS AND ACCEPTED PRACTICES.
N
By Warren Thaxter
eutral First! Finding neutral is a practice, which like most
of motorcycling, must be learned. With modern electric
start motorcycles being able to easily find neutral isn’t as important as
it is with manual start engines, though having the transmission in neutral eliminates clutch drag and allows the bike to be started or easily
moved.
The shift pattern on all modern motorcycles is the same; first
gear is found moving the shift lever down and the rest of the gears are
found by moving the shift lever up. Neutral is located between 1st
gear and 2nd gear. Finding neutral can be achieved by stomping the
shift lever down repeatedly and then moving the lever up a half notch.
A more humane system for finding neutral is to pull in the
clutch, apply some gentle down pressure on the shift lever while
gear are secure and trailers (if used) have the full compliment of
working signal lights and fenders.
Follow The Rules
If an area is off-limits to mechanized traffic, then obey the authorities. Never ride on private land without permission. Upon reaching the riding area, park your vehicle in such
a manner as to prevent blocking the road
a lot of
Other groups do
espect
g-r
or trail. It is not advised to park close to
trail groomin
rts
effo
their
a trailhead. Riders exiting a trail, unaware of your vehicles presence, may collide with it.
License it.
License and insure your bike and carry proof of such. Buy a forest membership if necessary and proudly display it on your vehicle.
Park in the designated area, camp and only light fires if allowed. If
you smoke, be careful with your cigarette butts. During the dry summer fire season, the forest floor is a tinderbox of needles and brush. A
carelessly tossed butt could spark a firestorm that would endanger life
and destroy property. The best solution is to leave your smokes at
your base and remove the threat altogether.
Keep a neat base camp. Do not litter or exhibit loud behavior.
Do not “pit-race” about the lot or on adjacent side roads. If other forest users are lunching, it is a good idea to exchange greetings and start
you machines after you have pushed them away from the immediate
area. Upon returning, kill your engine and coast into the lot. Noise is
our biggest enemy. Keep your bike exhaust quiet and maintain the
packing in all silencers. More noise does not always equal more
power.
physically moving the bike forward or backward an inch. Movement
18
Join O.F.T.R…...
…..www.oftr.ca
15
“So... You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike”!
“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”
up using your tool kit to fix your bike.
5. Join an off-road motorcycling club.
of the rear wheel relieves pressure on the transmission gears and the
shift lever easily snicks downward and the lower gear is found. Not
6. If it’s a male partner who’s introduced you to this sport, try,
for the sake of your relationship, to get his friends - not him - to teach
you to ride.
knowing which gear the transmission was in necessitates doing this
exercise until no more lower gears can be found. At this time a small
amount of upward pressure is applied to the shift lever while the bike
7. Find a female riding buddy; go out and ride without the guys
as much as you can.
is again jiggled forward or backward and
t an d
ear a h elme
the transmission should snick into neuAlways w
e off
ak
(T
ety gea r.
af
r
s
he
ot
o
tral. Neutral is confirmed when the
f y ou talk t
ur h elmet i
yo
clutch is released and the bike can be
som eo ne)
easily moved a couple of inches forward
8. Until you feel competent, ride the lowest (and calmest) bike
you can. Lower the bike if necessary. Slide up the front forks and
add a lowering link or a spacer to the rear suspension.
9. Ride every organized trail ride you
can.
with no engine drag.
Learn to start
10. Try an enduro.
11. If you’re not already doing so,
exercise regularly and get stronger.
Sounds easy but again practice is needed to smoothly achieve
this act. Revving the engine to half throttle and dumping the clutch
will get one moving forward but unless it’s a racing situation, this
12. Ride responsibly and always remember - you ride because
it’s FUN!
tends to make a person look like a dork. A more civilized way to start
is to ease out the clutch until partial clutch engagement tries to move
See you on the trails!
the bike forward. At this time more throttle can be smoothly applied
while the clutch lever is slowly but fully released. Smooth starts are a
sign of an accomplished rider. Jackrabbit starts accent the fact that the
TRAIL ETIQUETTE
By Rick Currah
Whether a novice or experienced rider, you should realize
that from the moment you are seen with your motorcycle, you are an
Ambassador Of The Sport. How the general public and the authorities judge you is how the sport is perceived. This can begin with the
transporting of yourself and your bike to the riding area. Reckless
behavior on the road will lead others to assume an attitude of uncaring
indifference or worse, hostile disapproval. Ensure that your bike and
14
Join O.F.T.R…...
rider is beginner.
Park it
An accomplished rider will usually snick the transmission into
neutral as they come to a stop and unless the bike is being parked on
an incline, it is an accepted practice to leave the bike in neutral. Trail
bikes, by the way, are equipped with side stands allowing them to be
parked anywhere.
Plan for a breakdown.
Modern trail bikes can get a person far away from civilization
…..www.oftr.ca
19
“So... You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike”!
“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”
very quickly and equipment failures such as a flat tire can really spoil
your day. Plan ahead and carry enough tools to be able to do rudimen-
were just playing around on their bikes - popping wheelies, jumping
on and off the curbs, spinning around. They built a big ramp and
tary trail maintenance. A simple tool kit can be stowed on the rear
fender or carried by the rider in a fanny pack. Walking home isn’t
much fun!
jumped over it repeatedly, often crashing. During this, a couple of
little girls also rode by on their bicycles, on the sidewalk, looking
straight ahead, going to some destination. “That’s it”, I realized. Lit-
Know your bikes limits
Know how far your bike can go on a full tank of fuel. Dirt bikes
tle boys have fun taking physical
chances. Teenage boys have fun
les
few other vehic
Rememb er t hat
s,
so
ike
s
b
le
a
rab
are as maneuve
.
oom
of
r
ts
rs
lo
give o the
are not equipped with fuel gauges so a rider must mentally monitor
the fuel usage. Many bikes have a reserve feature on the petcock but
this is not an auxiliary fuel tank. It is simply a warning that some time
taking physical chances. Imagine the
kind of hand-eye coordination, the
quick reflexes they’ve learned by the time
in the near future your carburetor will be sucking wind and the rider
will either be pushing or begging someone for fuel.
puberty hits, and neural networks start slowly settling into fixed patterns.
Take a brake
Learn to use the front brake as well as the rear. Many novice
riders are afraid that using the front brake will get them into trouble.
Well, there’s not much I can do about that. I realize that I have a
certain clumsiness and level of fear that I will never overcome - and
that slows me down. But I learned a more important lesson from
Well, yes it can, but the front brake will also stop the bike in a fraction of the distance of the rear brake alone and the reason for having
those boys that day - MAKE IT FUN! Don’t say “I can’t do
that” (that = get up that slippery hill, get down that slimy cliff, ride
brakes in the first place is to, stop. Use only one or two fingers on the
front brake lever and always apply the brake smoothly. Grabbing a
handful of front brake will surely be a cause of grief.
over that pile of boulders, clear that gigantic log, get through that
stinking mud bog, cross that rushing river, etc., etc.). How do you
know if you haven’t tried? At least go for it, and go for it with a big
Riding in Sand
Riding in wet sand is pure nirvana with nearly positive and pre-
grin, yelling “Yahoo”!
So here’s some important tips for my fellow female riders:
dictable traction, a rider seems to be connected to the ground. Steering braking and acceleration is so positive and predictable as to instil
confidence. Take away the moisture and sand can become very diffi-
1. Learn to love obstacles.
2. Learn how to do at least basic maintenance on your bike (I
know, I know - most of us didn’t grow up tinkering - but it’s really
cult. Loose dry sand offers almost no traction. Steering input to the
front wheel will at first have no influence and then way too much in-
straightforward to change a spark plug, change your oil, clean your air
filter, change a tire - reluctance is the enemy of learning).
fluence as the front wheel jackknives and creates severe over-steer.
What actually happens is when the front wheel is turned the tire actu-
3. Always carry a basic tool kit when you ride.
4. Carry some treats when you ride, in case somebody else ends
20
Join O.F.T.R…...
…..www.oftr.ca
13
“So... You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike”!
“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”
for sustained travel at these speeds.
ally builds a berm or windrow of loose sand. When the berm becomes
great enough the wheel will respond immediately. The only trick to
WOMEN IN TRAIL RIDING,
By Meg Thorburn
There are some wonderfully fast and tough women in off-road
steering in loose sand is to learn that soon after a negative no-traction
situation, there will be a strong opposing positive action. Being ready
for and harnessing the positive action will allow a person to steer in
loose sand with ease. Again, this will become a learned process.
n, pa ck
u pa ck i eave t he
yo
r
ve
te
W ha
and l
ot litter
d it.
out. Do n r than yo u fou n
te
et
b
place
motorcycling. And then there’s the rest of us. Chances are, if you’re a
woman rider, you didn’t pick up the sport from your teenage buddies.
If you’re lucky, your Dad got you started. Most of us got introduced
The secret to straight line stability
in loose sand is to use a ‘leading throttle’. When the twist grip is turned to a
to dirt biking by our male partners, well past the age of fearlessness (if
we ever had it).
point where all slack in the throttle cable and throttle slide is used.
The entire drive-line is tight and the bike is almost, but not quite, ac-
I love this sport. And I work hard at it. So do several of my
girlfriends. But most of us just don’t get better nearly as quickly as
the guys do. For a
celerating.
This is a leading throttle and everything from the twist-grip to
the ground is positive. If the twist-grip is turned off, even for a sec-
long time, I found
this really frustrat-
ond, everything from there to the ground is upset. All of the positive
forces are now negated and the bike will feel unhinged. The force
ing. Finally I accepted it, but I kept
wondering why.
which was driving the wheels forward are now actually dragging everything backwards. This is a trailing throttle. To maintain a leading
throttle sometimes it is desirable to drag the rear brake slightly. The
Then one day, I
was standing in my
next time you are out for a ride try it, even on solid terrain the effect
can be felt.
driveway, working
on my bike, when
several 7 or 8-
Rocks
People who learn to ride in very rocky terrain quickly become
good riders or quit the sport. The same might be said for any difficult
year-old boys happened by on their
terrain though. Riders beginning to ride in easier terrain have some
difficulty when first encountering more difficult topography. Rock
bicycles. They
weren’t headed
anywhere; they
riding requires concentration, perseverance, momentum and the ability to look far ahead, pick lines and not deviate from those lines. Be12
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“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”
cause of big wheels dirt bikes can traverse big obstacles with relative
ease, though if the front wheel is allowed to wander, all is lost. Getting moving in rocky terrain is very, very difficult and it is usually
much easier to exert maximum effort to keep moving in the first
place. Dabbing with your feet may help to maintain balance and maintain forward motion but standing on the pegs is better is usually better.
Find the center.
Modern dirt bikes are quite light and a riders gross weight has a
lot of influence on how, where and when the bike responds. A riders
weight should be in the exact centre of the motorcycle and all input
should be from there. The exact centre by the way, is at the foot pegs,
so when a rider is standing their weight is centred. When a rider is
seated the weight is not centred. Watch any good dirt rider or racer
and you will see that they spend most of their time in a standing position. From this position all movement has an effect on the motorcycle.
From this position, slightly lifting the right foot loads the left and immediately steers the bike left. Lift the other foot and the opposite happens. Leaning backward loads the rear wheel and leaning forward
loads the front and unloads the rear wheel.
Sitting down and forward just before a turn loads the front tire
and increases traction. This also compresses the forks which changes
the geometry somewhat and increases steering input. Loading the
outside foot peg on a tight turn helps keep the wheels planted and
discourages the bike from sliding out or low-siding.
Tire pressure
Dirt bike tires operate on relatively low air pressures. Sand terrain is easier negotiated with low pressures of 6 to 10 PSI. For harder
terrain 10 to 12 PSI is required and rocky terrain requires more than
to cover the cost of retooling each year. If motocross bikes were
only sold to motocross racers there would only be a need for about
1/4 as many as there are and the cost to purchase one would be astronomical. Buying the wrong bike just because it was super cheap
or because there was an abundance of them
on the market, is
poor thinking.
Ex pect a
nd Respect oth
ers
who have t he
rig
the tra ils. Be ht to b e o n
co urt eous to
others.
In Ontario I would guess we
might have at most, a few dozen
riders who can actually ride a motocross motorcycle to its full potential in the woods.
For everyone else you're just slipping your clutch and would ride
100% better and enjoy the sport more with a more appropriate bike.
Even reasonably good riders find that to ride an MX bike on the
trails requires so much attention, that some of the enjoyment of the
ride is lost.
Why MX bikes do not make good trail bikes!
Motocross bikes have close ratio gear boxes, designed for
keeping the engine revs at or near the point of peak horsepower,
which is not so good though for finding optimum traction under
stringent conditions often found when trail riding. Motocross bikes
have small gas tanks, no side stands, no electrical output so no
lights, no spark arresters and usually loud exhaust, minimal fender
coverage and extremely stiff suspension.
Motocross bikes have close-ratio transmissions which don't
allow a bike to be ridden really slow without a lot of clutch slipping.
In Close-ratio gear sets, high gear is very low and fast trails or forest
roads must be ridden at an engine speed that vibrates your fillings
loose. Motocross bikes have 19” rear wheels which are more susceptible to flat tires in rocky conditions. They just weren't designed
22
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“So... You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike”!
“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”
THE RIGHT TOOL FOR THE RIGHT JOB.
By Warren Thaxter
First time trail bike buyers almost always ask, "What’s the best
bike to buy? This question is like asking which flavor of ice cream is
best. Even asking which is the most popular, is somewhat misleading.
Vanilla in the case of ice cream, and motocross in the case of motorcycles are unquestionably the most popular. A quick check of for-sale
ads always show an abundance of MX bikes for sale. Does this mean
motocross bikes
are best? No, it
just means there
12 PSI to keep from getting punctures.
Keep it clean.
Who said cleanliness was next to godliness?
We don’t know either, but we do know the value of
keeping a dirt bike clean. When cleaning your bike
loose fittings are noted before they are lost. Bent or
damaged components are observed and can be
straightened or replaced before they wear out something even more
expensive. There are many techniques to wash a bike and laying the
bike on it’s side to get at the underside is a common practice. If you
don’t agree with laying your bike on it’s side as part of the wash cycle, then lay it down after you think it is clean and take a look. End of
subject.
Passing riders
Unless you are absolutely the slowest trail rider in the country it's
are more of them
on the market.
Motocross motor-
inevitable that you will at times overtake other riders. The very fact
that you have overcome another rider on the trail should be proof that
cycles are extremely well de-
you are travelling at a quicker pace. Some interesting things often
occur in this situation though. The slower rider may speed-up in an
effort to not impede the catching rider which, impedes the catching
veloped and finely
tuned pieces of
racing machinery.
rider!
The quicker rider often errs as well. If the slower rider is travel-
With the enormous amount of
ing at a value of 10 and the catching rider is going a value of 11 the
catching rider will often increase his speed to 12 as soon as the pass is
completed only to crash or run off the trail within seconds. The posi-
time and money
needed to develop
them it is there-
tive thing here is that the quicker rider will probably get another
chance to practice his passing after he has extracted himself from the
fore necessary to
sell large numbers
topography.
A more sensible way might be for the quicker rider make the
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“So... You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike”!
“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”
pass and slow to the speed of the lower value and get straightened up
and collected and then increase the speed back to the original value
and motor on down the trail.
Read the Manual.
All of the little technical facts you would like to know about your
motorcycle; things such as how much oil does the gear-box hold, what
weight of fork oil should you use, what should the chain tension be,
are all printed in a booklet titled, “Owners Manual.” Read it! Maybe
read it twice.
If you purchased a used motorcycle and didn’t get the manual, scoot
down to your dealer and order one. If you are buying a used bike,
insist that the owners manual and tool kit be included, or knock a hundred dollars off of the price. The manual and tool kit will usually be
produced when there is some value attached.
GET INVOLVED
By Rick Currah
Speedway Racing:
This is a very specialized form of flat track racing and uses
specialty-built motorcycles with high powered engines in lightweight
frames and no brakes. Speedway is a very exciting form of racing.
Road Racing:
Road racing is a speed contest with a specially prepared
street motorcycle. This type of racing requires a paved surface such
as found in airports, parking lots and temporarily closed streets of a
town or city.
Drag Racing:
Motorcycle drag racing is usually held in conjunction with
automobile drag racing. Drag racing is preformed on a straight,
smooth and level strip of pavement usually 1/4 mile in length. This is
simply an acceleration contest between two competitors at a time.
The fastest competitor from each race moves on to the next competitor etc.
I left trail riding in the late seventies, caught in the scramble to
establish myself in career and marriage. I returned in 1990 to find a
sport that has not matured. Land has been lost due to urban growth
and questionable court decisions. Legal issues have every landowner
quaking in their boots and the sale of NO TRESPASSING signs has
never been better. I was fairly shocked. I knew things were tough but
I had no idea it was so bad. The closest legal riding area was over an
hour from home.
Looking for a support group to aid me in my quest for knowledge and riding areas, I joined a club. It was heavily focused on competition and since I am not a racer, after a year I let my membership
24
ing this type of motorcycle racing.
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Trail Riding:
Trail riding on a motorcycle is no different than doing so on
a horse or mountain bicycle. Trail riding is done all over the province wherever trails are found. In Ontario we are very fortunate to
have a sponsored series of organized trail rides which consists of
more than a dozen organized events across the province each year.
Trail riding is done with pleasure/trail bikes or dual sport motorcycles
and are not races.
Learning:
In order to speed up the learning process many affiliated clubs
offer rider training and Ontario has three commercial trail riding
schools. (See page # 31)
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“So... You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike”!
“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”
Enduro uses legally licensed motorcycles and traverse some
public roads to go from section to section. The speed on road sections
lapse. Slowly, I met fellow riders, who like me, love riding aimlessly
through the woods. Chumming around these riders re-
is much lower than the speed limit, usually 36 kilometers per hour.
The machinery used for enduro is the enduro bike, pleasure/trail riding bike or the dual sport type of street bike.
sulted in me joining the OFTR. What I have
coh ol or
Do not use any Al
learned and experienced through my ino ride.
Drugs if you plan t
volvement, has been more than worth the
Spectating at an enduro is usually limited to visiting fuel
stops but some organizers provide directions to spectator points.
annual dues.
Individuals can be passionate but achieve little. Many
Motorcycle Trial:
A trial is a motorcycle contest which is absolutely not a race
or speed contest. Trials is sometimes referred to as, ‘ballet on
wheels’. A trial is a contest of balance, ability, timing and fitness.
The course is similar to hare scramble but the optimum area
would include very large rocks and boulders, ledges and near vertical
riders can work together and realize their goals. A club can host an
event and raise funds for charity or the rental of riding land. New
members can learn riding and maintenance tips from the veterans.
Gear and machines can be traded between members and travel accommodations shared.
rock walls of which riders ride over and around. Machinery used for
this type of event are quite specialized but of low performance and
Club Representatives can be sent to municipal and provincial
government to protest unfair laws and legislation. Clubs can be selfpolicing. Peer pressure can modify the behaviour of unruly members
very quiet. The applause of spectators is usually louder than the motorcycles.
who antagonize authorities and land owners.
It is puzzling why some riders are reluctant to join a club. Per-
Flat Track Racing:
Flat Track racing requires an oval dirt track which is similarly used for horse racing. This type of racing often accompanies
country fairs. The machinery is very high performance, usually hand
built and one dimensional. Viewing is usually done from a grandstand from which the entire track can be seen. The noise and high
speed activity make this form of racing very exciting.
Ice Racing:
As the name implies this is a contest of speed on a twisty or
oval course on a frozen lake or pond. The machinery used ranges
from the pleasure trail bike to the high performance flat track bike and
includes motocross bikes. The weather is the limiting factor to enjoy8
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haps, they feel an organization would cramp their style and infringe
on their riding time by insisting on participation in club activities. My
reply to that is to imagine all the free time they will have when the
riding areas are off-limits because no large group protested illconceived land closures.
It is not just enough to join a club. Be willingly involved in the
activities and recruit new riders to the cause. Volunteer for committee
positions or become a director. While it may seem life is hectic already, it is time everyone gives to the sport they enjoy. We all have to
earn our keep. Riders who freeload off others quickly get a bad reputation and rightly so. If you are one of those riders who always ride
the events and never work one in return, you are losing out. Get off
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25
“So... You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike”!
the saddle and clear trail or run a
checkpoint. Ride the sweep position
ordin g
s only acc
il
tra
e
s
U
es inrm itted us
t o t h e pe
s ar e
om e trail
dicated. S
.
season al
“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”
forth in a small area of property. The course is defined with wooden
stakes and caution ribbon or straw bales. Motocross tracks are usually
or shepherd the novice group on a
trail ride.
The only way this sport will evolve and mature is through orga-
located on rough hilly agriculture land which is too rough to cultivate.
Occasionally temporary tracks are built inside stadiums or arenas and
the sport is then called, Super Cross. These types of tracks offer ex-
nizing. Many of us look at the Ontario Federation of Snowmobile
Clubs (OFSC) with awe. The Sledders have a trail system and organ-
cellent spectating as the entire track can be seen
from one location.
izational machine that is the envy of other motorized groups. They
deserve our respect. Snowmobilers realized in the early days, the
benefits of forming a provincial body to govern and guide their
petitor who can circumvent the course quickest is the winner.
sport’s future. Every fall, thousands of enthusiasts lay down their cash
for an annual trail pass. No hard sell by the OFSC and no grumbling
by the members. It is a recognized fact of life for a snowmobiler that
to enjoy the trail system you must belong to a club and buy a pass.
This mindset and the resulting success did not happen overnight.
Our struggle to survive into the 21st Century will be easier when
all off road motorcyclists realize the necessity of joining a club and
applying themselves to the promotion and preservation of the sport.
I can make you a promise. Get involved with an active club for
one year and you will not regret the time given. You will enjoy yourself and feel good about the group contribution made. You will renew
the second year.
CHILDREN AND MOTORCYCLES
By Clinton Smout
I started riding thirty five years ago on a friend’s minibike. His in-
n
Re spect
ature
Motocross is most certainly a race. The comHare Scramble:
Hare Scramble is a cross-country type of event encompassing
every type of obstacle available such as hills, trees, rocks, logs,
streams and jumps. This event is always in a wooded or bush lot area.
The course is a single track of about a meters in width and 2 to 10
kilometers in length. This event has a usual duration of 2 hours. Whoever completes the most laps in the given time wins. The machinery
used for this event is enduro or pleasure/trail riding motorcycles, motocross bikes and dual purpose motorcycles. Spectating at a hare
scramble takes some effort and usually requires walking part of the
course.
Enduro:
A motorcycle enduro is a competition event but it is not a
race! Enduro is a timed event similar to a rally using terrain similar to
Hare Scramble. The object is to circumvent a secret course, usually
100 -160 kilometers in length, at a predetermined speed schedule.
structions were, “just give her”. Well, that worked, but there is a better way.
Traveling faster (early) carries a penalty 5 times greater than traveling
slow (late). The winner of this event is not determined by top speed
but is the competitor who is assigned the least number of infractions
Is your child ready to ride?
or points.
Can they ride a two wheeled bicycle (without training wheels)? Can
26
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“So... You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike”!
If you have ever been to an enduro competition you will have
seen street plates on a lot of questionable bikes, and may have wondered how this was possible. It is a grey area which some riders and
dealers are willing to take advantage of. It requires a bike to be upgraded to receive a ‘Safety Certificate’ and requires such things as
lights, brake lights, mirror, horn, road legal tires, etc.
Contrary to popular belief knobby tires are not necessarily illegal for
road use. Most tire companies offer a line of knobby tires with a DOT
number. These tires often appear identical to tires which bear the
words ‘Not For Highway Use’ but can be considered street legal.
Although there is a general reluctance to register used bikes, mostly in
an effort to save on the sales tax, it’s actually a good idea as an ownership certificate is absolute proof of ownership
“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”
they comfortably reach the ground? Are they physically and emotionally
mature enough? Children often have a ‘no fear’ attitude which can enhance the learning curve, but sometimes parents must fill in the missing
caution filter for better safety.
What should they ride?
UIE T!
r bike Q roun d!
u
yo
ep
Ke
or e g
A child’s first bike should have mild
nd = M
e ss sou
L
power delivery and a speed governing
device (throttle or exhaust). A minibike or
motorcycle designed for racing will have a much steeper learning curve.
Where should they ride?
Check with dealerships, associations and clubs for safe, legal locations.
The area should be relatively flat, without challenging terrain. Field
with short grass is ideal, but check for gopher holes, rocks or any hidden
obstacles.
What should they wear?
THE SPORT OF MOTORCYCLING
The most important item to buy is a full face helmet (fitted by a profes-
By Warren Thaxter
Being a spectator at a motorcycle race can be a very enjoyable
experience, but like going to a movie, there are
many flavors of motorcycle activity. Following is
a brief description of motorcycle activities which a
person might find in Ontario.
sional). Other gear needs are goggles, elbow pads, jersey, knee pads,
gloves, full length pants, and sturdy, above-the-ankle boots. The smallest motocross boots may be too tall for the young rider’s legs. If the
boots cover and limit the knee’s rotation, then a strong hiking boot
would be better. Please, no running shoes! Children grow fast and the
proper gear is expensive, but buying big to economize is dumb. The
proper fit is important for their performance and safety.
Teaching your child to ride:
Motocross Racing:
Motocross uses a special high performance,
one-dimensional type of motorcycle which is specially designed for
You may be a great rider, but the worst instructor for your own children.
If you are determined to teach your own, then please, consider the
this activity. The course or track used is in an open area and is comprised of jumps, bumps, hills and turns. The course is usually about
KISSF principal. Keep It Safe, Simple, Safe and Fun!
10 miters wide and a kilometer or so in length and may loop back and
6
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Simple:
Explain how to put the brakes on, proper body positioning and keeping
the eyes up. Practice on a stationary bike without it running. The next
step is to push the child slowly in a straight
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27 line. Once they can balance
“So... You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike”!
“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”
Practice moving very short distances so the child has a chance to master
the throttle while still practicing the skills they learned while you were
pushing them. Gradually back up (you are always in front of them) and
have them ride towards you. Learning in small steps instils confidence,
promotes efficiency and safety.
Safety:
Make sure the area is safe. Stopping the engine should always be with
the engine kill switch and then the ignition key if there is one. They will
go where they look. Try and minimize distractions and don’t yell out
instructions as they ride past.
Fun!
Set easy to attain goals, keep your patience and sense of humour, watch
for fatigue and frustration and let them ride.
B UILDING AN OFF ROAD CLUB
the front of the vehicle and does not require a yearly renewal sticker.
At this time it’s not necessary to have any kind of operators permit or license to ride a bike or ATV offroad. To operate a motorcycle
on the street, or a dirt road, an M, M2 or M1 endorsement is mandatory.
The next requirement is insurance,
which is also mandatory when the vehicle leaves the registered owners property. The basic insurance requirements
are Third Party PL & PD, and costs will vary
ass on private
Do not tresp
e on e xisting
property. Rid
trails.
significantly from company to company. Some insurance companies
will not even offer such a policy. Many agents want you to bring all
your other insurance requirements to them before they will sell the
Offroad Policy. Primmum, through the MMIC offers reasonable,
stand alone insurance rates for off-road vehicles. State Farm is an-
By Ken Gardner
The concept and development of the Great Pine Trail Riders.
other company which offers decent rates for these vehicles. The best
option is to ask, and shop around.
In 2002 a small group of recreational off road riders in Durham Region
decided to form a non competitive club to support Off Road Motorcycle
use within the Ganaraska Forest. Our goals were to encourage families
I wonder how many people realize the penalty for operating a
vehicle without insurance is presently $5000.00. This is not a misprint. The fine is equal to the price of a good used motorcycle. An
to come out and ride, to educate all forest users on proper behavior
within the forest, to preserve and enhance the dirt bike image within the
exception to the license plate and insurance rule is, if the owner belongs to an organization and engages in sanctioned, closed course
community by being ambassadors of our sport, to maintain and improve
the trail network and create a strong working relationship with the Forest Authority.
competition, (motocross / hare scrambles) This however doesn’t allow the owner to use the vehicle except at that sanctioned event.
Some offroad or dual sport motorcycles carry street plates and are
To date, we have achieved our goals, and continue to build on this foundation.
then automatically governed by the Highway Traffic Act. When possible a motorcycle should be licensed in this manner as it opens doors
Was it easy? Yes….and no. Volunteers have to give up a lot of personal
time, which is difficult in today’s society. Was it worth it? Was it satisfying? “Yes!”
to a lot of country that a rider with a strictly offroad plate couldn’t
legally encounter.
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“So... You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike”!
“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”

THE LEGALITY OF IT ALL.
By Warren Thaxter
In Ontario we have a set of laws called the Off-Road Vehicle
Act. Copies of the Off-Road Vehicle Handbook are available for
about $8.00 from the MTO office where you buy your license plates.
This act or law governs off road motorcycles, three and four wheel
ATVs and dune buggies. Powered wheel chairs are exempt but might
not be if they are powered by a performance two-stroke engine and
equipped with knobby tires.
The act is specific in that every vehicle must be registered and
carry a license plate if it is to be used other than the registered owners
property. The license plate is the green one, costs $35.00, attaches to
How to start your own club:
 Find some riders that have a common interest
 Get them communicating in some fashion (Internet is easiest)
Get a consensus on what your goals are and just how much you
want to develop your new club
 Elect (or appoint) an executive to operate the club. If you
want it to last more than one season, your going to need help.
 Get financial support from an umbrella group to help get you
going. We got help from OFTR to fund our first trail repair,
which helped set us up as contenders within the Ganaraska
Forest.
 Delegate. Try and do it all on your own and you will burn
out.
 Sell your club; get out to bike shows, swap meets, etc and
setup a table to show off your club, so you can build membership.
 Talk to other clubs and let them know who you are, and what
your about
 Never, never, never forget what your goals; Stay focused
 Lastly, ride lots and have fun!
I truly enjoyed helping found the GPTR. It is a small club, but one
with a strong voice.
Where to ride your dirt bike ; by Warren Thaxter
Although Ontario is a very large province with thousands of
kilometres of forest road, back road and trail scattered throughout, at
this time there is no comprehensive catalogue of available trails or
trail networks. Don’t despair though, because we do have an abundance of dirt oriented motorcycle clubs in Ontario and all of them can
suggest and guide a novice to acceptable places to ride. Some clubs
actually own their own property, some have agreements to use public
land and most all of the clubs promote riding events for club members
and the public at large.
4
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“So... You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike”!
“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”
a slow moving bike with their eyes up, stop it using the brakes, and
hold it up, then try the engine. Starting the engine is easier for them if
Table of Contents
you have warmed it up.
Riding Groups and Clubs in Ontario
Ausable River Riders
www.Ausableriverriders.com
Tyson Howarth: 519 898 5346
Blue Sky Riders
www.blueskyriders.com
Doug Bies:
Bytown Motorcycle Association
www.bytown-motorcycle-assoc.ca Woody Percival: 613 267 6861
Erie Ramblers Motorcycle Club
www.erieramblers.tripod.com
John Bartel:
Great Pine Trail Riders
www.greatpinetrailriders.com
Paul Mooney: 905 697 3646
Haliburton Highlands Trail Riders
www.hhtra.ca
Ken Hoeverman: 705 447 3110
4 6 10 12 14 18 24 26 282930 31 -
The legality of it all
The sport of motorcycling
The right tool for the job
Women in trail riding
Trail etiquette
Tips, tricks and accepted practices
Get involved
Children and motorcycles
Forming a motorcycle club
Where to ride your dirt bike
Riding group/club contacts
Motorcycle Training
Halton Off Road Riders Association
www.horra.ca
Tim Middlehurst - 519-942-0633
Huron Recreational Riders Association
www.hrrasarnia.com/hrra
Tom Schleihauf - 519-542-7680
KW Cyclesport Association
www.kwcyclesport.ca
Steve Topham: 519 742 7294
Lakeshore Dirt Riders
www.ldrmc.ca
This booklet, edition # 3, is edited and authorized for print by the original editors and writers;
Warren Thaxter, Rick Currah, Meg Thorburn, Clinton Smout and Ken Gardner.
The opinions expressed are those of the writers and
not necessarily the opinions of the OFTR or the
sponsors of the booklet.
Dan Holmes
Lynn Valley Dirt Riders
www.execulink.com
Doug Kent - 519-582-1074
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“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”
“SO … YOU ’VE JUST BOUGHT A DIRT BIKE”, booklet
has been prepared and brought to you by the;
Ontario Federation of Trail Riders,
2783 Contau Lake Road, P.O. Box 257,
Gooderham Ontario. K0M 1R0.
www.oftr.ca
Niagara Timberline Riders
www.timberlineriders.ca
John Gregoire - 905 227 0686
Northumberland Trail Riders
www.oftr.org Barry Ferguson - 905 753 2776
Ontario Dual-Sport Club
www.odsc.on.ca
Al Buck
Oshawa Competition Motorcycle Club
The OFTR wishes to gratefully acknowledge that the
major funding to make this booklet possible was generously provided by:
* Ministry of Transportation Ontario
* Canadian Off-Highway Vehicle Distributors
Council
* Motorcycle & Moped Industry Council
O.F.T.R. Mandate
To source, create and maintain a trail network
in Ontario for safe, family use by offroad motorcyclists as well as any other good intentioned
users. To provide a strong voice supported by a
substantial membership to represent trail users to ensure, to
our best ability, that these trails continue to be available .
www.ocmc-racing.ca
Dan Holmes: 905-987-1719
Otter Ridge Dirt Riders Inc.
www.oftr.org Chris: 519 -874- 4278
Simcoe County Off Road Riders
www.scorra.ca
Wayne Ricketts:
Steel City Riders MC
www.steelcityriders.ca Albert Beamer: 905 772 5516
Thames Valley Riders
www.tvrmx.com
Welland County Motorcycle Club Inc.
DIRT B IKE SCHOOLS AND T RAINING F ACILITES
Ganaraska Trail Tours & School: www.trailtour.com
Canadian Motorcycle Training:
Tracks Offroad :
2
Join O.F.T.R…...
…..www.oftr.ca
www.cmts.org
www.tracksoffroad.ca
31
Ontario Federation
of Trail Riders
2783 Contau Lake Road,
P.O. Box 257, Gooderham
Ontario. K0M 1R0.
TO:
“So... you’ve just bought a dirt bike!”
…..www.oftr.ca
Join O.F.T.R…...
32
“So….You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike!”
“So... You've Just Bought a Dirt Bike”!

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