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New rider looking for some purchasing advice


jaysun
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Hey all! I grew up riding friends' ATVs from about 9 to 14 years old. Since then, I've only gotten to ride 2 or 3 times (I'm 32 now), so I'm very much out of the loop. A friend of mine just started dating a girl with an ATV and just talking about riding gave me the itch so bad that I'm about to buy a couple for myself and I could really use some help.

The ATVs I grew up riding were 400cc Honda 4x4 utility quads and I've never so much as sat on a racing bike but, looking at my selection on Craigslist, I'm finding a ton of sexy, seemingly well priced race bikes. My girlfiend, on the other hand, is dead set on utility ATVs. I may compromise and get one of each.

I'm a bit worried about stepping into race ATV territory, though, for a couple reasons. First, I'm finding that several people are selling theirs because they're "too fast". I'm all for some speed but I don't wanna kill myself and I don't wanna be intimidated by the bike. When I was a kid, we'd throttle those Honda 400s all the way down the trails, hitting about 50mph, but these 450 race bikes are topping out closer to 70 or so, not to mention I'm sure they have a lot more get up & go in the low gears. Secondly, I'm worried about the ability of race bikes to handle mud. I live in Florida and I'll primarily just be riding dirt trails but rain and mud are inevitable. I see a lot of the race bike sellers saying things like "never been in mud". Is mud that damaging to these types of ATVs?

I'm sure I'll have more questions. I'm spending all day today just perusing Craigslist and narrowing down my choices.

I appreciate any help you guys can offer. Thanks!

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Dream Car Giveaway
I`m for gettin 1 sport and 1 4x4 quad ! JMO Ive tried both but I feel more comfortable on a sport !! I feel the need to drop the hammer once in awhile and fly !! :yes:

I think that's where I'm going with it. I'm only comfortable on a utility quad but I wanna learn to ride sport.

If you're willing to waste an hour researching for me, I created this thread...:yes:

http://www.quadcrazy.com/atvforum/general-atv-discussion/12326-i-seriously-need-help-choosing-some-quads.html#post77627

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You can find used Thunder cats for around $5k

and sport atv's are a dime a dozen this time of year.

Apparently, utility quads are tough to find around these parts. After spending most of my day searching, this is all I could come up with...

http://www.quadcrazy.com/atvforum/general-atv-discussion/12326-i-seriously-need-help-choosing-some-quads.html#post77627

Five. Five decent utility quads.

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I think that's where I'm going with it. I'm only comfortable on a utility quad but I wanna learn to ride sport.

If you're willing to waste an hour researching for me, I created this thread...:yes:

http://www.quadcrazy.com/atvforum/general-atv-discussion/12326-i-seriously-need-help-choosing-some-quads.html#post77627

I cant help on choosing a utility as I dont know much about them ! We have tons of members way smarter than me when it comes to utv`s !!:yes: I know sport quads though !! Whats UR skill level at riding ?? Does the GF ride much ??

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I cant help on choosing a utility as I dont know much about them ! We have tons of members way smarter than me when it comes to utv`s !!:yes: I know sport quads though !! Whats UR skill level at riding ?? Does the GF ride much ??

Both the GF and I grew up on UTVs. Manual, no clutch. I think that's why she wants a utility quad. I wanna spread my wings a bit, though, and learn something new. When I was 10 years old, I used to push 400s as fast as they'd go and whip around turns. Since I was teenager, I haven't really ridden at all, but I don't want to start where I left off as a child. I wanna step it up and get something with some balls. Admittedly, I'm pretty intimidated by it, though, but I don't have the luxury of being weened into it. When I choose my sport bike, I'll have to go pick it up and I'll have to test drive it even though I've never driven clutch and never driven anything with a 0-60 anywhere near what these sport bikes can do. I'm just gonna have to wing it.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I thought I'd come back in and let everyone that posted in here know what I ended up purchasing. A lot has changed since my last post.

After much debate and a ton of driving all over the state (sometimes to see piece of sh** ATVs), I ended up with the following:

New ATV - a set on Flickr

I picked up a 2008 Kawasaki KFX 450r and a 2005 Suzuki Vinson 500. To be perfectly honest, the KFX was a vanity purchase. I ended up spending more than I wanted because I liked the way the bike looked and I could tell it was well taken care of. As I said in earlier posts, I've never ridden a race bike, but I've taken it out many times since I picked it up and I love it. The Vinson was more for the wife and kids, but I also enjoy being able to take that one wherever the hell I damn well please.

I definitely have a lot to learn about both bikes but, for the moment, I'm pretty pleased with my purchases. It was pretty satisfying to pull someone from the mud yesterday with the Warn winch on my Vinson, and it's really effing satisfying to haul as* on the KFX.

As I've said, though, I don't really know sh$t about bikes. I've checked and/or changed the oil, spark plugs and air filters on the bikes, but that's about the limitations of my knowledge. I'm curious about specifically tuning the KFX to me. If anyone is willing to help me out, it would be much appreciated. The guy I bought it from said the bike is "set up for 100 foot jumps", whatever the f##k that means. He also gave me two toolboxes full of these tiny metal disks and I have no idea what they're for.

I don't expect anyone to have to explain how to tune this bike, as I'm sure it'll be a long as* process, but I'm asking you to point me in the direction of a resource. I've been riding the bike for a couple weeks and I've gotten pretty accustomed to it. I'm generally just doing donuts and riding through sugar sand, though. No jumps yet. If this thing is "tuned for jumping", is there something I should do to change that? I'm not jumping anytime soon. I'd prefer to tune it for the environment I'm riding in.

Edited by quadnut20
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I thought I'd come back in and let everyone that posted in here know what I ended up purchasing. A lot has changed since my last post.

After much debate and a ton of driving all over the state (sometimes to see piece of sh** ATVs), I ended up with the following:

New ATV - a set on Flickr

I picked up a 2008 Kawasaki KFX 450r and a 2005 Suzuki Vinson 500. To be perfectly honest, the KFX was a vanity purchase. I ended up spending more than I wanted because I liked the way the bike looked and I could tell it was well taken care of. As I said in earlier posts, I've never ridden a race bike, but I've taken it out many times since I picked it up and I love it. The Vinson was more for the wife and kids, but I also enjoy being able to take that one wherever the hell I damn well please.

I definitely have a lot to learn about both bikes but, for the moment, I'm pretty pleased with my purchases. It was pretty satisfying to pull someone from the mud yesterday with the Warn winch on my Vinson, and it's really effing satisfying to haul as* on the KFX.

As I've said, though, I don't really know sh$t about bikes. I've checked and/or changed the oil, spark plugs and air filters on the bikes, but that's about the limitations of my knowledge. I'm curious about specifically tuning the KFX to me. If anyone is willing to help me out, it would be much appreciated. The guy I bought it from said the bike is "set up for 100 foot jumps", whatever the f##k that means. He also gave me two toolboxes full of these tiny metal disks and I have no idea what they're for.

I don't expect anyone to have to explain how to tune this bike, as I'm sure it'll be a long as* process, but I'm asking you to point me in the direction of a resource. I've been riding the bike for a couple weeks and I've gotten pretty accustomed to it. I'm generally just doing donuts and riding through sugar sand, though. No jumps yet. If this thing is "tuned for jumping", is there something I should do to change that? I'm not jumping anytime soon. I'd prefer to tune it for the environment I'm riding in.

Sweet choices !! The kawi450 is a nice easy quad to ride !! That efi makes it easy to tune ! The "toolboxes " contain your shims to adjust your valves when it come time ! Get ahold of OX and download a manual for both quads it will answer any questions that you may have ! Those look like stock shocks on ur 450 so i wouldnt try any 100` jumps yet !!LOL Ask if they were revalved or rebuilt JMO

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