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Old 12-11-2012, 02:02 AM   #16
Seppo
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fast1 View Post
Snow/ice riding can offer some excitement on a boring day with aired down off road tires but I'd be more worried about some idiot in a cage sliding into me at a stop light/sign or sliding over the center line on a corner than anything else.

Hope you use extreme caution for those cages..



hey fast, looks like we both enjoy our huskys in the snow!

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Old 12-11-2012, 03:08 AM   #17
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OP, as you're in the UK, don't set your heart on a 2WD Ural; not road legal here (as the sidecar can't be moved over to the 'pavement side') A real shame; I'd be tempted by one for winter rallies if they were.

As others have said, you can get away with sports touring tyres (even on a sportsbike) if you take it easy and the snow is fresh. I managed 10 miles of (brand new snow) on mostly closed roads up in Scotland on my SV650s.
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Old 12-12-2012, 12:16 AM   #18
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Snow isn't a real problem until it gets to axle height, then forward progress ceases shortly after.

Ice is the problem child. I've ridden on ice, my weapon of choice was a low capacity 2-stroke running 2 gears too high - not enough torque to pull the skin off a rice pudding. Until it got really lethal lack of grip wasn't a real issue.

And go for grip wherever you can find it, the gravel on the centreline that you'd normally avoid, even the rocks sticking out of the frozen gutters.
It's possible to get through insane stuff if you are prepared to ride slow enough - not that speed itself is a problem, but you need a LOT of room to be able to peel off speed for corners.

And yeah, not fun at all in traffic.

Pete
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Old 12-13-2012, 12:16 AM   #19
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One common thread I get here is that the best way to ride in the snow is on a tiny bike.

Hmmmm. I need to go shopping!
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Old 12-13-2012, 02:25 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by atomicalex View Post
One common thread I get here is that the best way to ride in the snow is on a tiny bike.

Hmmmm. I need to go shopping!
I had a 110cc Pit Bike (it was BMX-sized and you ride it standing up, it wasn't one of the really small ones). I had a second set of wheels fitted with knobblies that I snow spiked. Unbelievable how good it was in the snow/ice. The expression on a dog walker's face as I went by with the bike lent over was hilarious. From where they were standing, they probably had no idea it was studded. If it was road legal, it'd be a great ice/snow bike; top speed of about 40mph, but if you're only going through town, that's not a problem and you'd not be going much faster on a big bike when conditions are really bad. The only limiting factor was a lack of grunt on the really steep hills and that the ground clearance ran out quickly in deep snow.

High maintenance, but who cares if you're only using it for a few days a year? Cheap too; cost me under £500 delivered in a crate, including the cost of the spare wheels and spikes. About 3 hours to assemble and spike it.
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Old 12-16-2012, 07:06 AM   #21
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Question

What level of technical and mechanical know-how do you need to assemble a crated import bike? I've also heard that they're unreliable and nobody stocks the parts, is this true? Are they really worth the effort?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ceri JC View Post
I had a 110cc Pit Bike (it was BMX-sized and you ride it standing up, it wasn't one of the really small ones). I had a second set of wheels fitted with knobblies that I snow spiked. Unbelievable how good it was in the snow/ice. The expression on a dog walker's face as I went by with the bike lent over was hilarious. From where they were standing, they probably had no idea it was studded. If it was road legal, it'd be a great ice/snow bike; top speed of about 40mph, but if you're only going through town, that's not a problem and you'd not be going much faster on a big bike when conditions are really bad. The only limiting factor was a lack of grunt on the really steep hills and that the ground clearance ran out quickly in deep snow.

High maintenance, but who cares if you're only using it for a few days a year? Cheap too; cost me under £500 delivered in a crate, including the cost of the spare wheels and spikes. About 3 hours to assemble and spike it.
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Old 12-16-2012, 12:58 PM   #22
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[QUOTE=braindigitalis;20260803]What level of technical and mechanical know-how do you need to assemble a crated import bike? I've also heard that they're unreliable and nobody stocks the parts, is this true? Are they really worth the effort?

there are loads of parts in the uk.
the 110,120,125 are bulletproof the 140,150,160 cc motor my need more work if you rev the nuts off them.


i had a 120cc pitbike and it was road legal only £70 3rd party only for insurances. the motor just needed an oil change and no other work was done to it.
it was on an daytime only mot so it was fun with only mx tires in snow.
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Old 12-16-2012, 02:47 PM   #23
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snow

I have ridden Wolf Creek pass (11000 ft) in Colo march 14 I was much younger and not so smart. I got caught on the way to Boulder Colo. riding my 1959 Triumph 650. I got caught at Steamboat Springs by the storm They let me sleep in the jail. The morning was about six inches of heavy wet spring snow Most of the way over the pass I was in third gear pulled down slow the snow packed into a channel that held the tires good.The scary part was the 1/4 mile long snow shed it was glare ice no brakes, no turns, I started into it far right ended up far left wrong side of road. Just before I got to the first town there was a quick heavy snow so I went into the restaurant front covered in a half inch of new snow ,acting like this was normal, Why were they staring.?
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Old 12-16-2012, 06:55 PM   #24
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Riding is tough enough in my opinion....Why introduce no traction?
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Old 12-16-2012, 08:53 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by braindigitalis View Post
All advice welcome for a relative newbie, with very little fear of the weather on a non-adv bike!
From someone who, for nearly 40 yrs, has driven in snow/ice/winter conditions 6-7 months per year on 4 wheels, .......my advice is there's a lot of TERRIBLE advice in this thread, and if you're caught in snow / packed snow or ice .... you need to be fearful of staying upright AND the other guy on the road..It's one thing if your playing around off road, but personally, I'd never ride any bike in traffic.

JDK111 screwed with this post 12-17-2012 at 06:53 AM
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Old 12-19-2012, 10:24 AM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by braindigitalis View Post
What level of technical and mechanical know-how do you need to assemble a crated import bike?
Depends on the bike, but typically not a lot. These pit bikes are easy so long as you can put handlebars and wheels on and know how to do a standard "pre-ride check" (tyre pressures, oil, etc.) The PDI info said to check the valve clearances, probably just a CYA for the importer; I can't imagine why it wouldn't be done in the factory. I've done it on other bikes, but didn't have my feeler gauges with me where I was assembling it. In any event, with a 30 day warranty and at £100 for a brand new from the factory engine, I was prepared to take the chance!

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Originally Posted by braindigitalis View Post
I've also heard that they're unreliable and nobody stocks the parts, is this true? Are they really worth the effort?
I bought a WPB (Welsh Pit Bikes) one. They're a rebranded 'Stomp' bike which apparently (I knew nothing about them) are one of the better ones. A lad I knew through bigger bikes who races Supermoto Pit Bikes recommended getting a Stomp, so I did. I didn't find mine to be unreliable, other than it seemed more upset by fuel 'going off'' after being left for a few months than other bikes and was quite difficult to kick start for such a small engine.

The reason I chose WPB is that they're only 50 miles from me and I'm often down that way on my GS. Also because they have a place you can walk into and see the bikes and they carry a complete range of spares in stock. I do mean complete; most 'proper' dealerships could learn from them. I wanted a couple of new sets of wheel bearings, brake discs, spacers, innertubes and tyres and they had the whole lot available for next day delivery. The parts were as insanely cheaply priced as the bike itself. I had feared that they would make their money with very fast wearing and very expensive parts, but this turned out not to be the case.

I recognise I'm lucky in the above situation and for a lot of people, the same bike would be bought from a faceless ebayer with questionnable warranty/returns/parts support in the future. Fundamentally though, the bikes are low tech clones of old Hondas.

I have seen people make them road legal (in the UK at least). There'd be no practical use in me doing so, but if I had a short commute, it would be well worth it if your 'proper' bike was your only other transport or you wanted something to commute on in the snow.
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Old 12-20-2012, 09:14 AM   #27
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Originally Posted by JDK111 View Post
From someone who, for nearly 40 yrs, has driven in snow/ice/winter conditions 6-7 months per year on 4 wheels, .......my advice is there's a lot of TERRIBLE advice in this thread, and if you're caught in snow / packed snow or ice .... you need to be fearful of staying upright AND the other guy on the road..It's one thing if your playing around off road, but personally, I'd never ride any bike in traffic.
I tend to agree,
I have ridden a 2 wheeler in the snow many times, It can be done to a point with lots of preparation and practice, but it leaves little margin for error. Some of the "advice" smacks of bravado.
I still ride in snow and ice on a regular basis, but I ride a Ural which has been built in Siberia for 70 years, winter riding conditions are it's natural element.

The right tool for the job, not making due with the wrong tool.
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Old 12-20-2012, 12:07 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PeterW View Post
Snow isn't a real problem until it gets to axle height, then forward progress ceases shortly after.

Ice is the problem child. I've ridden on ice, my weapon of choice was a low capacity 2-stroke running 2 gears too high - not enough torque to pull the skin off a rice pudding. Until it got really lethal lack of grip wasn't a real issue.

And go for grip wherever you can find it, the gravel on the centreline that you'd normally avoid, even the rocks sticking out of the frozen gutters.
It's possible to get through insane stuff if you are prepared to ride slow enough - not that speed itself is a problem, but you need a LOT of room to be able to peel off speed for corners.

And yeah, not fun at all in traffic.

Pete
I'm ok with snow depths to about 6-7" then it begins to make my V-strom "float" on the belly pan, I don't find ice an issue with studded tires

I also find you have to hang off more to keep the bike more upright in corners. I'm lucky enuf to life in a low, almost non existent traffic area, I would never ride in conditions I do in metropolitan commuter traffic, hell, I won't even drive a cage in that
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Old 12-20-2012, 11:14 PM   #29
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I'd rather swim with an anvil than ride in the snow. Maybe on a frozen lake with no turns and no traffic I might try it if I'd been drinking but I pucker in a car when it's snowing, and I lived in Wisconsin until I was 40. No thanks.
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Old 12-21-2012, 10:26 AM   #30
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I'd rather swim with an anvil than ride in the snow. Maybe on a frozen lake with no turns and no traffic I might try it if I'd been drinking but I pucker in a car when it's snowing, and I lived in Wisconsin until I was 40. No thanks.
its all what your comfortable doing, for me, its no big deal

I like driving a car in the snow as well, when else can you countersteer a car to go in the right direction
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