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I saw this article on Motosport and thought it was pretty good. Anyone add anything?
You might think hopping on-board an ATV and going for a spin is just as easy as taking your regular 4-wheel car for a ride around the block. After all, both have four wheels. How hard could it be?
In many respects, you're right. Some adventure riders choose quads over their two-wheeled counterparts of the dirt because there's less chance of crashing and it's easier to learn. ATVs also offer more manageability for younger riders to get acquainted with outdoor riding than a dirt bike.
However, beginner riders on ATVs tend to make the same mistakes that result in crashes, roll overs and injury that could be avoided with some instruction and know-how. If you're looking at a fun family outing by renting ATVs or want to get into the sport take advantage of the following points and avoid the same mistakes so many other first time ATV riders make that end their day early or before they barely get started.
1. Nerf Bars
Get Nerf bars. These are not soft cushy add-ons that are cousins to the football you use during backyard football games. In many respects, Nerf bars are gigantic foot pegs. Don't bother with traditional foot pegs because you'll constantly slip off and because of the "I feel safe factor" that comes with riding a quad you'll also have a tendency to let your feet drag when riding. That's a recipe for getting one or both of your feet caught in the back tire resulting in serious injury. Nerf bars allow you to stabilize your feet and get maximum control over the ATV
Rest your feet easy on Nerf bars
2. Rolling Over
Believe it or not, it's fairly easy to roll an ATV over. And you don't want to be on the bottom of that sandwich.
The most common way of ending underneath a quad is looping out. That's done by hitting the gas and having little to no experience with the power of an ATV. The front spikes up like an out of control stallion, throws you onto your back like a bucking bronco and then pins you like a UFC Champ.
The second way is when you're having a bit too much fun sliding around in mud or other slick conditions, the tires finally do what they're designed to do and grip the ground but the rest of the bike, with you on it, keeps going.
Finally, those who think they've found their bearings take aim for a steep slope and try to conquer it only to end up upside down or in their attempt to arch alongside said steep hill, tumble over the side.
3. False Sense of Security
This goes somewhat hand-in-hand with the roll over capability that many riders fail to appreciate therefore they also neglect wearing proper protective equipment. Don't think wearing jeans, t-shirt and sneakers is adequate protection when riding a 4-wheeled machine powered by a gas engine that doesn't have seatbelts. You need a helmet, goggles, gloves and riding boots at a minimum. Once you start ripping it on the track or trails add a chest protector, neck brace, knee brace, etc.
4. Throttle Control
Everybody wants to skip the kiddie stage and get right into hair-raising speed when it comes to riding ATVs. OK, most everybody. But for those who do so many put on the cloak of invincibility and think a quad is merely a mini car that finally enables them to release all sorts of pent up childhood inhibitions.
So they jab their thumb into the throttle with the expectation of a controlled roller coaster ride. Instead, they loop out and end up underneath the quad or manage to stay seated only to careen off course and introduce their 4x4 to a large tree. ATVs normally have a thumb throttle and most have an automatic clutch so the clutch is one less thing to worry about. So go slow and figure out how much "thumb" is too much and get used to the speed and power an ATV delivers before really going for a ride. Oh, one more thing, learn to take your thumb off the throttle!
It's not to hard to loop out on an ATV
5. Loading the ATV
Never, ever ride an ATV up a ramp into the back of a pick-up. If you want to know why just go to YouTube. If you want to know how to load an ATV check out this fine piece of quality information on How to Load a Motorcycle, Dirt Bike or ATV into a Truck.
The bottom line to riding an ATV the first time is treat it like you would anything that comes with a modicum of danger. Careless behavior endangers you and others but with common sense and a willingness to learn you'll enjoy of lifetime of riding quads.
For additional information on riding and/or maintaining ATVs see:
10 Quick Safety Tips for ATV Trail Riding Tips for New ATV Owners Choosing the Best ATV for Beginners 10 Things That Alter Your ATV Performance Written By: AndrewT
Just purchased one of these and I have a few questions: Went to change the air filter and it fell apart, but there were two pieces of the foam wrapping the wire cage - Normal? In addition there was about an inch of oil in the bottom of the air filter box - again - Normal? The backing piece of plastic for the wire cage was laying in the bottom of the filter box and the bolt was also in the oil. I am also looking for a recommendation on what to do with the machine as far as maintenance, it runs well, shifts fine, needs a new battery, but what else should I be checking? The previous owner had it for over 25 years and does not have any records or memory of the last oil change or any other maintenance other than needing to replace the battery a couple of years ago and placing a car battery on the front rack and running wires to the starter. Learning curve is sharp, but looking forward to the experience. Thanks for your input.
If you take a step back and look at the last 10 years of ATV production, you'll notice a bunch of changes. Most of which we think are in the utility line of quads including the increase in CC's and electronics. What else? What do you think we'll see...Soon to be 1000 CC's??
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I had the local garage change the oil and filter in my machine and ever since they changed it there has been an oil leak. Taken it back several times and they can't figure out the problem.
If you are looking for a used ATV for sale, where do you look? I know ebay and craigslist have used ATVs for sales and then sometimes you find local trade publications where they list used ATVs. I was looking online and decided to list out some websites that sell used ATVs. If you know of any additional websites or sources to look for or buy used ATVs, please post as a comment in this topic.
eBay Motors - usually has a good selection of four wheelers, ATVs, and Side by Sides and offer seller protections
Craigslist - usually has more local ATVs, but be careful as there are no seller protections
ATV Trader - has over 130k ATVs listed by private sellers
ATVSoup.com - new and used ATVs for sale
WantAdDigest - Shows local listings of ATVs for sale
ATV.com - List new and used ATVs for sale
When buying a used ATV, make sure you do your research and find out the book value of the ATV, look over the condition of the ATV, and as for verification of ownership. Be careful who you buy from and get the ATV checked out by a professional dealer or repair shop if you are baying a high price.
Watch our for VIN numbers that are scraped off, this is usually a sign that the ATV was stolen.
polaris 330 little power
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