Thoughts on this idea...

Discussion in 'Some Assembly Required' started by Biddles, Mar 28, 2018.

  1. Biddles

    Biddles Suck it easy!

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    Just looking for thoughts, and general consensus on this idea I'm mulling over. Originally I wanted to buy a WR250R but due to a few different reasons I decided to pass on that. I still want what that bike offers, but could I get that out of a Frankenstein build? I found a newer 300cc street bike on craigslist for cheap. It was crashed, but runs and rides like new. Mostly cosmetic/handle bar damage.

    What I want to do however is convert it into a dual sport. Now I want good reasons why I shouldn't do it. For example forks, will forks from other bikes fit in the triple tree, and how would they perform in that situation? Rear suspension, how can I make it not suck? More importantly how can I do this cheaply?

    And of course the engine... A very capable engine with great gas mileage, but how would it hold up to the abuse from trails?

    Again I'm theory crafting here, and it's very much just a jumble of stuff in my mind. On top of it all I'm very bored and need something to do.
    #1
  2. everready

    everready Stuck in Ohio....Ugh!!!

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    What kind of bike is the 300?
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  3. Biddles

    Biddles Suck it easy!

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    2014 Ninja 300
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  4. tHEtREV

    tHEtREV Encouragement award recipient. tEAM iDIOT.

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    As far as forks go, it is usually easier to swap the whole front end, and with a bit of research a longer shock shouldn't be to hard to find, or just lengthen the dog bones (or is that shorten them...)

    Biggest hastle would be increasing the fuel range if needed and decent ergos.
    #4
  5. madrider5150

    madrider5150 Been here awhile

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    If you can do most of the work yourself that engine in a klr frame would be similar to the CRF 500 others have done and been very happy with

    Sent from my Moto G (4) using Tapatalk
    #5
  6. STcorndog

    STcorndog No destination

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    Most street bike frames have a steep head angle and most dirt bikes have a relaxed head angle.
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  7. Salsa

    Salsa Long timer

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    I have been putting 25 degrees in my dirt bikes for years.

    The world lives on 25 degrees !!!

    Don
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  8. Dino de Laurentiis

    Dino de Laurentiis Working on it

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    From what I’ve seen of similar conversions, on here and elsewhere, it’s the rear rather the front that’s the biggest issue to get right. A road biased tank is also often difficult to fit to a more off road riding position. I can’t say I’ve seen an off road conversion of a street focused bike that turned out super good, there’s always something that looks off.
    #8
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  9. everready

    everready Stuck in Ohio....Ugh!!!

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    Why don't you just fix the issues with the Ninja and sell it? Then use that money to buy what you really want? Seems like that would save you a lot of time, money and effort.
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  10. dirt hokie

    dirt hokie Long timer

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    If you like building as much as riding, and can do all the hard work yourself, then its doable for only about twice what you think it will cost.
    The only way it will be cheaper then just buying a bike, is if you already own two mostly complete bikes which you are using for your parts, and those parts are all usable in your project. Go for it.
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  11. sanjoh

    sanjoh Purveyor of Light

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    Go for it!

    Look around this forum and you will see many street bikes converted to off road oriented bikes.

    The build can be done on the cheap if you shop accordingly.

    Bonus - be prepared to learn something
    #11
  12. Pezz_gs

    Pezz_gs Cant ride for crap

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  13. Lawman_745

    Lawman_745 Adventurer

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    I'm doing a similar build right now with a CBR600. If you have the time, tools, and resources, it can be done. If you think you'll be finished in a week forget it lol. It's been a fun project so far though. All depends on how much effort you want to put in it.
    IMG_20180331_223258247.jpg
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  14. Z50R

    Z50R Not lost yet

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    I want to echo what everyone else is saying. If you think that this method will be faster or cheaper than holding your money and surfing classified advertisements until what you really want comes up, I think you will be disapponted. I am converting a dual sport into a dual sport and it has taken the better part of 4 months and many dollars. I am doing mine because I wanted a specific setup on a specific engine/carburetor platform. With my ideal bike as the reward at the end of the project it is still easy to get discouraged. I think an aimless project is going to make keeping motivation momentum up much harder. I am the last person in the world to tell you don’t do it or that it can’t or shouldn’t be done but I would caution you that you should make a plan and stick to it if you want to finish/not pour money down the drain.

    A piece of advice: research your plan thoroughly. For example: a fork swap requires bearings that fit your frame and your fork. Can they be bought or do you need to modify something to get the parts to fit? If you can re-use bearings you have, they are free, otherwise they are $40 more. If you have to modify the steer tube, is that something you can do or do you need to farm out that work? At what cost? Now you have a dirt fork on a street frame. Did you get enough caster or do you now have a really twitchy death trap of a bike? Did you pick the fork you have because it was cheap on craigslist or because it is the one you needed to make the bike you wanted to make? Did you get the front wheel and the brakes with the fork or do you need to modify parts to fit there too? This game of 20,000 questions is much easier to play before you spend a dime. Use the time it takes to run through all the questions to repeatedly ask your self if this project makes sense.

    If you need something to do to occupy your time then go for it. If you want to save money, you are either going to need enough money to start such that you can buy entire bikes and part out what you don’t need or you are going to need an imense amount of time. It took me 4 years to build the lathe I wanted for $400 rather than $1500 but I was in college and I had 4 years and did not have $1500. Now-a-days I might shoot myself before taking on such a project to save $1000. I would do it to make something I wanted but can’t buy though.
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  15. Roadracer_Al

    Roadracer_Al louder, louder, louder!

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    I just skimmed the prior responses, and if this has been said, I apologize.

    The big issue with dirt forks/triples on a street bike chassis is that it's almost guaranteed that the wheel and/or fender will intersect with the radiator. Heck, even on dirt bikes, they've split the radiators in half specifically to get keep the front end packaged in close, and the wheelbase short.
    #15
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