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  1. DRZ400 FAQ

    Step-by-step HOWTOs, Fix's, Tips and Tricks

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  • Featured Content

    JASO Explained Part 1: 4-Strokes
    JASO Explained PART 1: JASO 4-Stroke Engine Oil Specification        The Japanese Lubricating Oil Society or JALOS is the organization that regulates the performance of various motorcycle specific engine oil types. JALOS is the organization that regulates and oversees the implementation of the JASO motorcycle engine oil specifications. For motorbike applications, there are two separate JASO categories for 4-stroke and 2-stroke applications with numerous subdivisions within each category. For this article I am going to focus on explaining the 4-stroke category.        Let’s begin with a quick background of the 4-stroke JASO specification. In 1998, JALOS organized the first widely accepted standard for evaluating performance of motorcycle engine lubricants. This was necessary due to an increasing number of automotive oils meeting the energy conserving and resource conserving specifications through the additive technology of friction modifiers. Because these friction modifiers are not designed for compatibility of wet clutches, problems were occurring in motorcycles with combined engine and transmission oil sumps. The MA specification was launched in 1998 with the attempt to differentiate between products that were suitable for wet clutch applications and those that weren’t. This was done in collaboration with the major motorcycle manufacturers of Japan at the time, so it was a fairly industry-wide desire to identify the products that worked most effectively. The first two categories introduce by JALOS were the JASO MA and the JASO MB performance specifications. The MA category was originally meant for good clutch compatibility and MB was for products not compatible with wet clutches, or in other words; products that contain friction modifiers and cause clutch slipping.        In 2006 the T903:1998 specification was replaced by the T903:2006 specification which underwent a big change to the clutch friction test results and their interpretation. The MA specification for JASO performance in wet clutch applications was further broken down into three oddly distinct yet overlapping categories. In 2011 the T903:2006 specification was then replaced by the T903:2011 specification in order to further refine those friction result ranges for each category. The charts below lay out the exact ranges for each category during each update and make it simple to see how they are currently broken down. Table 1: JASO T903:1998 Clutch Friction Specification Table 2: JASO T903:2006 Clutch Friction Specification Table 3: JASO T903:2011 Clutch Friction Specification Table 4: JASO T903:2016 Clutch Friction Specification MB – To be classified as MB, at least one of the three results needs to be within the MB ranges. It can be any one of the three, it could be two of three or it could be all three, but at long as at least one result is within the MB range, the entire oil performance is considered MB. MA1 – To be classified as an MA1 oil, all three of the results must be within the MA1 range. MA2 – To be classified as an MA2 oil, all three of the results must be within the MA2 range. MA –  To be considered MA, all three results must be within the MA range. Since the MA range encompasses both the MA1 and the MA2 specifications, it can become a little confusing. Technically, if a particular oil meets the MA1 specification, a lubricant marketer can call it an MA oil and the same applies to an oil that meets the MA2 specification. If an oil’s results are mixed and some of the results are within the MA1 range and some are within the MA2 range, then it can only be classified as MA.        So that is how the clutch compatibility is currently tested. The SAE #2 bench test is the most current testing protocol to determine performance at the time I am writing this article. To put it simply, MA covers the entire clutch compatible range, MA1 is the lower friction half of that specification and MA2 is the higher friction half of that specification. These friction test results are the only differences between the four JASO categories for 4-stroke motorcycle engine oil.        The result names of DFI, SFI and STI are kind of nondescript and difficult to assign a practical property to. It took me quite a long time in the industry before I found a adequate enough description of each one to fully understand the results myself. Here is a basic description of what each one means: Dynamic Friction Index (DFI) – Is a measurement of how power is transferred while being operated under slipping conditions or in other words, how the clutch feels as it is engaged when already spinning. Static Friction Index (STI) – A measure of how much torque can be applied to an already fully engaged clutch before slipping occurs. Stop Time Index (STI) – A measurement of how much time it takes for the clutch to engage when the lever is released.     There are other tests that are required for JASO compliance that relate to performance characteristics other than wet clutch compatibility tests. Here is the exact specification followed by a brief description of each item. (Warning: there are a lot of technical terms coming up that you might want definitions for, many of these terms and tests are already listed in the glossary page at Mototribology.com.)                               Table 5: JASO T903:2016 laboratory bench testing requirements. These specifications control the chemical and                                   physical properties of motorcycle specific oils. Density – A measurement of mass per given volume Flash Point – A way to measure the flammability characteristics of a fluid. It is measured by determining the temperature at which the oil vaporizes rapidly enough to make the volume of air directly above the liquid flammable. Kinematic Viscosity - A measurement indicating a fluids ability to flow. The more viscous oil is, the thicker it is. This is sometimes referred to as low shear viscosity. While the result at 40°C only needs to be reported, the result at 100°C must correlate to the designated SAE viscosity grade on file for the product. Viscosity Index - A number which is calculated using the kinematic viscosity of a fluid at varying temperatures. Simply put, it is a measure of how stable the viscosity is over a wide temperature range. The higher the viscosity index number is, the more stable a fluid is with regards to viscosity. Low-Temp Viscosity, CCS – The low temperature viscosity of an oil in high shear rate conditions. High Temp. High Shear Rate Viscosity at 150°C (HTHS) – The high temperature viscosity of an oil in high shear rate conditions. Sulfated Ash – The metallic ash content of an oil after it burns. This is a part of how to evaluate an oil’s cleanliness. Acid Number – The acidity of an oil. This is sometimes referred to as Total Acid Number. Base Number – The alkalinity of an oil. This is sometimes referred to as Total Base Number. Evaporative Loss – The mass of oil that will evaporate at a specified temperature. This relates to oil consumption rate and an oil’s viscosity stability. Foaming Tendency – The resistance an oil has to a head of foam both forming and persisting on its surface measured at three different temperature conditions. Shear Stability – The resistance for an oil’s molecules to be sheared or reduced. This property relates to viscosity stability. Color – I sincerely hope this needs no description Elemental Analysis – A quantitative measurement of the concentration of chemical elements in a material. Phosphorus is the only element that is controlled or limited by JASO. Infrared Absorption Spectrum Analysis (IR Scan) – A type of scan that identifies chemical bonds. Figure 1: Example of an IR scan        This stuff can be confusing, I know. So if any of it is still unclear to you, feel free to PM any questions.       You may have noticed that most of the tests on this list are only reported to JASO and don’t actually have any required values. This is because many of these tests are simply used as identifiers. JALOS periodically does “secret shopper” testing and pulls products off the shelves to make sure that the oil being sold matches the formula which was filed with JALOS. This has the dual purpose of ensuring that the originally filed results were accurately reported and that formula changes were not performed without re-qualifying the oil with JALOS. With so many different properties being reported, it would be easy to identify a simple manufacturing variance compared to an actual formula change, so it effectively keeps lubricant marketers from being dishonest when advertising a JASO registration.     So that is the entire JASO 4-stroke engine oil specification minus the labeling requirements and then all it takes is a deposit of ¥40,000 (approximately $400 USD) to the JALOS bank account to be added to their list and to display a JASO box such as the one below on the back label of an oil. Figure 2: JASO registration box for rear labels of motorcycle engine oils. Only products that are officially registered with JASO and are included on the JASO filed engine oil list are permitted to display this box on their label. So if you see the box, you should be able to look it up on the list to confirm its registration. You can also find the company that owns each formula and if you read the oil code you can tell exactly what country that product is manufactured in. By looking at digits two, three and four of the oil code, which are specified by a corresponding country code in Appendix 3 (Page 19) of the JASO T903:2011 specification document, you can tell the exact country of origin for every product on the list. Figure 3: JASO oil code example. Why JASO is Important Now you may be asking yourself, is registration really that important? It is true that registration is not required to market a product for 4-stroke motorcycle use, but the fact that a product is registered does give assurance from an independent third party that a product does perform as claimed. There are many many brands and products out there that claim to “meet JASO MA requirements” or they may say “meets JASO performance specifications” or something else along that same line. If there is only a claim and no box, then you simply need to take that company’s word for it that they comply, and if there is no official registration, it is only that company’s promise that they are formulating honestly. The products that claim to meet JASO requirements more than likely do, but there is certainly a higher chance that a company that does not register may not be testing to ensure that performance. Registering with JASO does have a downside. It makes it difficult to improve formulas any more frequently than once every few years because of the cost involved for each reformulation, so it can make it difficult to adapt to quickly advancing technologies. The JASO specifications give a benchmark for motorcycle specific oils that highlights the performance needs that are different from standard automotive oils. By addressing those differences and working with both motorcycle manufacturers and lubricant manufacturers, JASO continues to update the specification every five years or so to remain in step with the most up-to-date technologies; by keeping up-to-date with the technology advancements always happening, it makes sure that oils are able to advance without risking the loss of their JASO registration simply for trying to improve or do things possibly outside the ordinary to create a uniquely performing product. What’s Next?        The T903:2016 specification was released in April, 2016 and is now implemented. There was an attempt to bring in a new test to quantify gear protection, but there were problems validating the test procedure so it is not planned to go into effect until 2021 now.        The clutch test was revised to give a more accurate differentiation between the categories. So the updated ranges and test pieces now offer a more precise and useful test.        As mentioned above, gear pitting is an issue they want to address. It was not able to be implemented in the 2016 specification but it is still of interest for eventual inclusion into the specification.        The FZG Gear Test was the original test considered to analyze gear pitting performance. Unfortunately the FZG test method proposed for measuring pitting protection has been deemed too unreliable to be standardized. There is a lack of repeatability between laboratories performing the test and the cost of each test was determined to be too costly in the end.        An alternative test called the Thrust Needle Bearing Test has been suggested as an alternative to the FZG as an indicator of gear pitting protection. The test result has a close correlation to the FZG results and is very cheap to run relative to the FZG gear test. Unfortunately this test is also experiencing a lack of repeatability between laboratories at this time.        Unfortunately before the specification can include a new test, the test must display a strong correlation between facilities and a highly repeatable test method. Different users and laboratories must be able to obtain results within a reasonable margin of error, but until that happens, this new test will not be part of the specification. By 2021, they may have a new procedure developed that can work for this purpose. Here are some links to the JALOS website for anyone who would like to review the official documents: JASO T903:2016 Specification JASO 4T List of Filed 4T Engine Oils
    Posted by MotoTribology on Mar 14, 2017

    MSR NXT Riding Gear
    A while back, I had the pleasure of reviewing MSRs Xplorer Summit Series riding gear   and I came away pretty impressed overall. For my tastes, it was a bit heavy, mostly due to added material for pockets and such. More recently, the folks at MSR   asked if I'd like to give their NXT line a try, it looked like it was right up my alley, so I took it to the Canadian woods to see how it would fare. Product Overview: The NXT line isn't new, just improved. Taking feedback from MSRs very best racers, in some of the most difficult conditions, MSR refined the NXT line to fit better, perform better, and last longer. Starting with the Gloves, some features include a reinforced thumb to resist blistering, double layer synthetic palm for added durability, and Velcro cuffs for a better fit. Moving on to the Jersey, they simplified and slimmed down the sleeves for a better fit, added venting under the armpits, as well as a large vented back panel for cooling. Lastly, we move onto the Pants. Notable features include adjustable Velcro waist straps  with a ratchet style belt closure for a better fit, 600D Oxford main construction and leather inner knee pads for added durability. To keep the everything comfortable and in place, a 3/4 mesh liner is used on the inside of the pants. Performance: With a new box labeled MSR sitting on my doorstep, I couldn't help but tear into it and see what arrived. With a base color of black with the grey accents and green MSR labeling (I would call it a flow green), the look was very simple and clean. To date, this is my favorite color gear as it's dark and hides dirt well. After strutting around the house, testing the fitting with the 34w pant, the fit was perfect. I would also note, the Xplorer gear I tried last year came as a 34w so the fitting consistency was accurate. The jersey fit well too and the sleeves did seem slimmer (but not restrictive) than other jerseys I have owned. The gloves felt comfortable, but I did have concern with added material in the palms might cause issues when riding. Striking a few poses for my wife/kids and getting familiar with my new gear, I headed out to the trails the next day to put them to the test. In the field, there wasn't a fault to be found. Starting with the Gloves, my initial concern over the added material in the palms wasn't a issue at all. The trend of lightly padded gloves is on the rise, so everything else feels bulky at first, but it didn't bother me when riding. I completed four off-road events and multiple days of riding/training in various weather conditions with not even the faintest hint of a blister or the like. Moving on to the Jersey, again, great performance all-around. The micro ribbed cuffs did a excellent job of keeping the sleeves in place without being restrictive. The jersey fit well and provided the right amount of length to tuck into the back of the pants and to stay put. Both warm on cooler days and cool on warmer days, the jersey did a great job at venting. If I had to nitpick, the armpit vent holes are large enough to put a finger through, so take caution when putting on the jersey otherwise you might snag you finger.   As for the Pants, excellent! As mentioned earlier, between the loss of weight and 2" off my waist, the pants were put to the test. The adjustable waist did a excellent job of clinging to my shrinking frame. The adjustable waist is not something that's offered on all pants, so its something to consider when purchasing a new gear. The pants fit well into my boots  with no added material, as well the length was perfect. I don't wear knee braces, but there is enough room in the knees to accommodate them. Another point, the downside of darker colors is with washing; the colors can fade and become dull. Also, washing can take its toll on seams, patches, stitching, buckles, etc.. Some gear literally falls apart! I'm into multiple washes and the NXT gear has shown no signs fading or breaking down. Pros Accurate sizing. Good build quality & durable. Flexible, functional venting. Adjustable Waist. Excellent Colors Cons I got nothing Bottom-line: When I look at the MSR NXT line, I see the Xplorer line stripped down. Everything that made the Xplorer line great: the pockets, the thumb-loops, etc... have been removed. MSR was able to maintain the ruggedness and durability of the Xplorer and incorporate it into the NXT line. I found a lot of similarities between the two and when going back to read my review of the Xplorer gear, with many positive points being shared. MSR took something great, modified it for the off-road rider who doesn't want/need the features of the Xplorer line and hit it out of the park. I couldn't find a single reason not to give their NXT gear set a five star rating. I was that impressed! When looking for your next set of gear, I'd suggest putting the MSR NXT line near the top of your list.. it's that good!
    Posted by Bryan Bosch on Feb 20, 2017

    New Product! Fly Kinetic 2017.5
    This past weekend Fly Racing launched their 2017.5 Kinetic Mesh just in time for the summer.  Fly racing is based in Boise, ID, many former professional racers now work at Fly (Jason Thomas “JT$”, Cole Siebler, Kyle Gills, Jeff “NorCal” Northrop) and the designers take their input seriously when designing the gear.  Fly Racing gear is founded on quality and comfort, including high end features at a mid level price point.   After riding in 80-95 degree heat last Saturday at MesquiteMX I’m still blown away by how well the gear fits. The Kinetic Mesh gear isn't the “pajama style” vented gear from 3-5 years ago.   The older gear left me looking and feeling ridiculous with an untucked jersey and sagging pants.  With the new 2017.5 Kinetic Mesh, if it wasn't for air flowing through me I would have thought I was wearing regular gear.   The Kinetic Mesh Pants retail for $114.95 and $38.95 for the Jersey.  Go to www.flyracing.com for more information, all sizes and colors are available in the TT Store.   Check out Jeff “NorCal” Northrop as he explains further the features and benefits of Fly 2017.5 Kinetic Gear.  
    Posted by Chris Cooksey on Mar 14, 2017

    5 THINGS YOU'RE DOING WRONG WHEN CLEANING YOUR BIKE
    Off-road riding means getting dirty, not just the rider but also our machines…and while we take a quick shower and we’re ready for a night out, our motorcycles don’t have it as easy! There are many different schools of thought when it comes to how to properly wash your dirty/muddy/sandy motorcycle after riding, so we took a look at some of the popular techniques and did some investigation into “what’s right and what’s wrong” when it comes to cleaning your ride. Although most of our readers are pretty sharp, most of us aren’t detailing experts so we reached out to some industry experts for their insight and advice and they are quoted here. #1: YOU’RE HARMING THE EXPENSIVE FINISHES ON YOUR BIKE Modern motocross bikes (and even older more exotic machines) can have a myriad of different types of metals and plastics that can present a problem when you want to quickly wash your bike after a day in the dirt. Materials like titanium, aluminum, magnesium, carbon fiber and hard/soft rubber may have different requirements when it comes to cleaning. We spoke first to Boris Mahlich at Motorex who stated “Certain cleaning chemicals are harsh on the finishes, glossy and matte finishes in particular and metal surfaces. Aluminum, magnesium and titanium in particular are susceptible to staining, etching and corrosion from harsh cleaning agents not suitable for such metals. Another thing to consider (is that) rubber seals which can dry and crack when continuously cleaned with harsh cleaning products or solvents.” “Solvents and cleaners that are overly acidic or alkaline (high and low pH values) are not good. Stay away from extremely alkaline cleaners and extremely acidic cleaners typically used for industrial and household applications.”  Andrew Hodges at Bel-Ray offered this insight: “Highly caustic chemicals can damage certain surfaces if left on for too long, so it is a good idea to either spot check a cleaner before applying it, or checking with the chemical’s manufacturer for their usage guidelines. Solvent based cleaners can also have a negative effect on some painted and plastic surfaces.” Brian Wilkinson of Slick Products said: “Any cleaning product that does not have a neutral or low pH of 7-8 should be used with caution. High alkaline products are very corrosive and will etch soft aluminum and will discolor those expensive anodized parts on your bike.”  In talking to these experts, it seems a safe way to go is to use cleaners that have a neutral PH not too high or low, and stay away from your rubber components where possible.   #2: YOU AREN’T USING THE RIGHT PRODUCTS ON YOUR MOTORCYCLE Walk down the automotive aisle at any big-box or automotive store and you see many offerings in the vehicle washing section. They are cheap and have great marketing…in fact I use them on my power equipment, but not on my motorcycles. What are the pros and cons of using some of these more popular mainstream “general purpose” products such as Power Purple and Simple Green? We asked our experts their honest opinions and here’s what they said.  Hodges: “General purpose cleaners usually fall into that highly caustic group I mentioned before so using them should be done with care. They are generally very good at cutting through grease and soils, but they don’t stop there. So if they are left on a surface for too long it will eventually start affecting the surface. If a part such as a plastic guard has any surface defects in the clear-coat, those highly caustic cleaners can get under the clear coat at the damaged area and spread the damage. So, they can be used, but there is more generally more risk in doing so compared to a buffered, surfactant based cleaner.” Wilkinson agreed and added: “The simple answer is that (these products) are not designed to be used on motorcycles. Industrial and household cleaners often have higher pH making them more corrosive on soft aluminum. In some cases etching and discoloring will occur in seconds while other cases corrosion tends to slowly occur after every wash.”  “In addition, do not overlook the fact that a motorcycle needs lubrication (and) using a degreaser as an overall bike wash will strip lubrication from bearings and pivots points. Unless you’re a professional mechanic who takes their bike apart every week to re-grease you should be using a product like our Off-Road Wash that removes heavy dirt and mud without stripping lubrication.” Other industry experts mentioned they were concerned with not only potential harm to the end-user of these more aggressive cleaning products, but also the effects on the environment as a whole. As with all off-road chemical products, it’s important to not only remember proper application and usage, but also think about where these products may end up, so always observe proper containment and disposal requirements.   #3: YOU AREN’T PROPERLY WASHING YOUR MACHINE Is there a right and wrong way to clean your bike? We’ve always felt as long as it looks clean at the end that what matter, right? Well, we’ve heard a lot of different advice when it comes to washing your bike.  Use pressure washer, don’t use pressure washers, stay away from all seals, never wash o-ring chain, etc.  Some of these tips seem to make sense and some may be based on old-school habits that die hard so we asked the panel their thoughts on this topic. Eddie Cole from Matrix / 1.7 Cleaning Solutions offered some tips on washing your motorcycle correctly:   “It's best to let the motorcycle cool down before washing it and lube the things right away that need to be lubed after washing. (Don’t) get water into the exhaust system and into the air filtration system, there are exhaust plugs and air filter covers on the market (that are) designed to keep water out of those areas, and use a Spray and Shine with rust preventing agent.”  Cole continued: “We think it's (also) important to dry the motorcycle properly and make sure everything is dry and in working order and we recommend cleaning the air filter right away before restarting (making sure to) remove the exhaust plug before starting the bike.  Check that that the controls, brakes and the throttle are in good smooth functioning order before starting and/or riding the bike again.” Hodges from Bel-Ray elaborated on mistakes they see riders make when cleaning their machines and this includes: “Not spot checking cleaners on aftermarket parts before coating the entire bike in cleaner. If the parts utilize a unique or uncommon surface finish, this can be problematic for cleaners that are designed for the more typical surface finishes. These parts may need some more individual attention for cleaning. Using a pressure washer to rinse the bike - the pressure washer risks pushing water and displacing lubricant or flooding into places you don’t want water.” He continued: “Thinking that a bio-based cleaner is fine to just drain into the soil or a drain. Just because it is bio-based doesn’t mean it isn’t detrimental to the environment. Water based, biodegradable cleaners are generally safe for that practice, but any solvent based cleaner (bio or not) should be disposed of properly.” Wilkinson from Slick added: “The worst mistake is a permanent one. Since being at Slick Products we have so many customers who used a product that (has) caused damage and want to know how to fix it. You can't un-corrode metal, so when you spend $8-$10K on your dirtbike don't spray a $2 cleaner on it.”   #4: YOU MAY NOT BE USING A MOTORCYCLE-SPECIFIC CLEANER Some products made “for motorcycles” can be expensive when compare to their automotive counterparts, so we’ve been somewhat reluctant to buy them as frequently and figure many of our readers feel the same. We asked the experts what makes their off-road products “motorcycle specific” so we could gain some insight into what products to buy and why. Hodges from Bel-Ray went first: “Bike Wash is a water-based, buffered, and the cleaning power is based on surfactant technology. It penetrates and lifts grease and soil from surfaces allowing for easy rinse off. A short time on the surface is all it takes for the dirt to be loosened, so by the time you spray the last area of the bike or ATV, you can begin rinsing the first area and work your way around. Unless the machine is extremely dirty, it usually requires no scrubbing or physical cleaning.” Hodges also mentioned the Bel-Ray Foam Filter Cleaner & Degreaser is designed specifically to remove dirt and the high tack filter oils common in motorcycle and ATV applications. Mahlich from Motorex explained: “Motorex products are engineered and designed by our in-house laboratory in Switzerland specifically for motorcycle applications. That means they are not industrial products that may just work on a motorcycle. The sole purpose for these products is for the care and maintenance of your motorcycle and that is what they are designed to do.” Cole from 1.7 Cleaning Solutions offered: “1.7 Cleaning Solutions were developed specifically for motorcycles,  we spent months interviewing and testing with the top mechanics in professional racing to develop a product line to meet their professionals needs and expectations.” “We needed a multi-purpose cleaning product that would attack the dirt, oil, grease grime quickly but leave a bright finish when dry. The wash needed to work and be compatible with plastic, aluminum, steel, magnesium and titanium without harming or attacking powder coated finishes, anodized finishes or chrome, (so) we developed motorcycle specific products for specific purpose that include our Formula 1 Wash Degreaser for motorcycle finishes, our Formula 2 Spray and Shine for the complete motorcycle (plastics, motor, suspension and components) that gives a factory "new look shine" and light silicone lubricant finish. Wilkinson of Slick added: “We have worked very hard to create specially formulated non-corrosive cleaning products designed for motorcycle riders, by motorcycle riders to offer a faster, safer, and easier cleaning experience. Each one of our cleaners serves a unique purpose in the cleaning process to help maintain the life, look, and value of your bike.”   #5: YOU AREN’T DETAILING YOUR MOTORCYCLE BEFORE STORAGE Many riders wash their bikes and stick them in the garage…don’t. Putting a motorcycle away for any length of time makes them susceptible to oxidation and corrosion and that’s not good. This is more of a problem for riders in colder climates with shorter riding seasons like the Northeast and there is more than one school of thought on how to put your bike away. So we asked the experts why and how to clean your motorcycle before storage. Hodges from Bel-Ray offered: “A thorough cleaning is always a good idea, but more importantly it’s what you put on rather than what you clean off when storing a bike. Cleaning the chain and applying fresh chain lube with strong anti-rust properties is the first and easiest thing to do.” “A rubber preservative for any external hoses or seals is a good idea for long term storage (and) cleaning grease and grime from electrical contacts and applying a non-conductive protectant or grease to electrical terminals is advisable. Any protective surface coatings for plastic, metal, rubber or vinyl surfaces can only help in preserving the condition of the bike.” Mahlich from Motorex added: “To keep metal finishes from oxidizing while a motorcycle is stored, cover the surfaces with a protective spray. Motorex Moto Protect is formulated to protect all painted and metal surfaces from corrosion and oxidation. Simply spray the surfaces leaving a thin protective film that will ensure your motorcycle comes out of storage looking as good as it did when it went into storage.”   In conclusion, by observing some simple protocols and using common sense when cleaning your motorcycle, you can keep that factory look and that not only makes you feel good but also preserves your hard-earned investment for future resale. Today’s motorcycles are expensive and use exotic materials that are important to the overall look and function of the machine, but there are products available that can not only clean your ride properly, but help preserve these materials so they can perform as they were originally designed. Have a though to share? Hit us up in the comments section below!
    Posted by MXEditor on Mar 02, 2017

    Doubletake Mirror Trail Mirror
    Recently, I jumped through all the hoops required by Washington State to make my woods-ready 2-stoke MX bike street legal.  Mirrors were required and while I did get a cheapo pair with the dual sport conversion kit I used, when the folks at Doubletake Mirror offered up their new "minimalist" Trail Mirrors for review, I jumped on it. I knew that Doubletake has a reputation for bulletproof mirrors and the ultra-simple design of their new mirrors appealed to me for conditions that I ride. I received a pair of mirrors that were individually packaged and noted that I they are no bigger than what many ladies carry in their purse for applying make-up (2" to be exact). Also in each package were two heavy-duty, UV resistant Panduit ® zip ties and a sleeve they ride on for added friction (helps the mirrors stay in place). Trail Mirrors have a convex shape to create a wider field-of-vision and its base is angled so that they point behind you. Of course, orientation will vary slightly based upon the sweep of the handlebars you are running. Install? About 30 seconds per side once you decide where on your handlebars to put them and to make fine( up/down) adjustments before fully snugging up the zip ties. I did read on the Doubletake Mirror website that the Trail Mirror is not US DOT approved, but I can't really see any LEOs giving you a hard time about them. I'm certainly not worried about it. Your mileage my vary. How do they work?  For testing I did some commuting to work  as well some full-on hard enduro trail riding at Walker Valley ORV. > On the Trail Despite plenty of rough terrain, trail brush, and a few "offs", the mirrors stayed right where they were installed and came away with not even a scratch. Replacement glass is $10.00, but if you manage to break these, you'll have bigger worries. Not that you need mirrors for trail riding, but I can see how they would be helpful if you needed to keep track of someone tailing you on group rides. A plus for us seasonal cold weather riders is that the mirrors are compatible with hand guard mittens. > On the Street Because of its "minimalist" design, Doubletake Trail Mirrors are only "adequate" for the street; better suited for connecting trails than daily commuting. You either have to lift an arm or lean the bike to see behind you.  However, in the curves or at night when headlights are visible, the mirrors work fine. Since the mirrors are mounted directly to the handlebars, there is little-to no-vibration that effects the reflected image like there can be with extended mirrors. So, what's my overall opinion of the new Trail Mirrors from Doubletake? if you are going to be mostly hitting USFS roads between trails or zipping over to your local riding area, these things work phenomenally. But for more regular traffic use, they require a little too much extra work for my taste. Also, at $25.00 per mirror, there are cheaper basic options out there. At the same time, the Doubletakes seem indestructible and are rebuild-able. Like anything dual sport, these mirrors are trade off, ideal for some, not for others. Only you can decide if they are right for where you ride. More @ https://www.doubletakemirror.com/
    Posted by Russhole on Mar 02, 2017

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