10 Great Mods That'll Transform Your Dirt Bike – HotCars
Riding a dirt bike is an amazing experience itself, but these affordable must-have upgrades will raise it to a whole new level.
Dirt bikes are some of the most fun machines to ride on. When it comes to adventure sports, dirt bikes are among the top options to go to, especially for bike enthusiasts. The experience of riding a purposefully made bike up and down jumps and wading through dirt and mud is a feeling that very few other things can offer. Another great feeling is buying an awesome dirt bike. The bikes are a different breed of vehicle that separates them from the rest of the bunch, kinda like rally racers in terms of cars. Manufacturers like Kawasaki, KTM, Yamaha, Honda, and Husqvarna are qualified and proficient in making capable dirt bikes that can tackle most if not all dirt tracks around the world.
However, like any other automobile, there is always room for customization and upgrades. Whether it’s as small as changing the brake pedal or footpegs, or as complex as replacing the clutch or jetting the carburetor, people find a way to upgrade their stock dirt bikes to enhance the experience even further. The practice of modding and upgrading vehicles has been around for a long time so there’s nothing new to learn here. This works for us because we know exactly what needs to be done according to our individual needs. Here are 10 great ones if you don’t know where to start.
You must be thinking that changing the brake levers and foot pegs will not make any major change and will just be subtle customization. But you’ll be surprised by how much difference it makes. If you install bigger brake levers, the surface area of your feet pressing the lever will be bigger and it helps get more control over your bike’s braking.
The footpegs have a similar cause and effect on your riding experience here. It really helps to have a better place to keep your feet against, especially while landing from a big jump.
The handlebars of your bike are of supreme importance to keep yourself attached to your bike while taking and landing from jumps. Many times, stiff handlebars can make your ride a rather unpleasant one just like small or uncomfortable footpegs.
Raising the handlebars or broadening/narrowing them to better suit your physique and most comfortable riding posture will make a night and day difference. If you become more comfortable riding your bike, you will naturally be more confident. You will also find yourself to be a more skillful rider than before.
Steering dampers are most useful in stabilizing the handlebar. This will greatly decrease the instances of arm pumps when riding constantly for a while. A few hundred bucks spent on steering dampers and stabilizers will save you from a lot of physical trouble down the road.
They also enable you to adjust your steering on the go. Such a capability is helpful when you are on an adventure going through uncharted territory. There are many good brands, but we would recommend Fastway Steering Stabilizers if you want the best ones.
Performance exhaust systems are not exclusive to dirt bikes only. Chopping your exhaust can be tempting, but they will only increase the noise, not performance. For performance, you will need to get an aftermarket counterpart.
Bike manufacturers design the exhaust pipes to be quiet, efficient, and aesthetically appealing. But aftermarket exhaust pipe designers only focus on the increase in power. Hence, they will be simpler, louder, and might not look that good. But who cares when you get better throttle response, more power, and a better ride experience? Just make sure you don’t end up in a legal gray area.
Honda, Kawasaki, and Suzuki have stopped making 2 stroke dirt bikes, but the other half of the big six manufacturers, KTM, Husqvarna, and Yamaha still do. If you happen to get one, you should protect the header pipes as they are often exposed and fragile.
If you do a lot of wood riding or ride in rocky terrain, it’s not a question of ‘If’ but a question of ‘When’ the header pipes get dented. Installing a guard for them costs half as much as replacing and fitting new pipes so it’s money-saving too. Now you can ride without worrying much about protecting them.
Many times, you will feel a loss of power, or maybe the bike’s hunger for fuel has multiplied. Regardless of the bike running lean or rich (meaning using less or more fuel than needed), you might have heard the solution: ‘jetting the carb’.
Fuel-injected 4-stroke bikes will not have this problem though. A jet kit can make it easier to adjust the mixture of air and fuel that goes in the engine. It is a painstakingly long process to properly install a kit, but we’re sure it’s gonna be worth it.
A dirt bike’s suspension is one of its most important parts. It’s prominent in making a dirt bike, a dirt bike. Tuning or replacing suspension is probably the biggest and most popular upgrade for these bikes.
It’s also one of the most difficult and expensive as well, but you’ll see your investment’s worth right from the get-go. Go through a triple jump and you’ll instantly see why many people opt for better suspension. You can also make them stiffer if you ride on freeways more often.
The shifting of a dirt bike can be rough. When you are speeding and jumping your way through a dirt track, mistimed shifts are bound to happen. Maybe the OEM or factory-made clutch from the manufacturer is not soft enough to your liking, or maybe it takes time to quickly downshift after hard braking, etc.
Either way, replacing your clutch with a more suitable, aftermarket one will completely transform the way you upshift and downshift, which will change how you ride your bike… In a good way.
Replacing worn-out tires with soft, intermediate, or hard terrain ones is another amazing and significant upgrade you can easily do. There is no universal type of tire that will be perfect for everyone regardless of you going on a freeway or racing the Erzbergrodeo. Although hybrid or intermediate tires are designed to be somewhat good on all types of surfaces or dual sports motorcycles.
However, the trials tire for hard terrains or the knobby tire will give maximum performance increase for their particular environments. All you need to do is figure out what type of surface you will be riding mostly on, choose your weapon and head on!
Another great performance upgrade to change how the bike rides. A bigger rear sprocket (gearing your bike down) will increase low-end torque at the cost of top-end speed. On the contrary, A bigger front sprocket (gearing your bike up) will make the bike slow on acceleration but increase the top speed.
Depending on whether you go on tighter tracks or long straights/highways you can tune your bike’s gearing to massively increase its efficiency. Replacing the sprockets with aftermarket steel or aluminum ones and adjusting the chain tension will drastically increase the bike’s performance.
Ramya is a Computer Engineering graduate with a lifelong love of automobiles. Digs all types of cars but has a special place in his heart for Japanese and Italian two-seater sports cars.