Trail riding - do you use first gear?

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Worm
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Trail riding - do you use first gear?

Post by Worm »

I noticed first gear is really low (91 kdx200). When I have a slow speed corner I drop it down into first and it revs out so quick im almost instantly flicking it into second.
Am I better off keeping it in second, laboring the engine a little and using the torque to drive out of the corner? The bikes does seem to pull fine in second. Perhaps first is really only for taking off from standstill?

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Re: Trail riding - do you use first gear?

Post by MikeNZ »

is the front sprocket standard 13 tooth. If it has 12 you could try 13 tooth (they are cheap). Even with 13 tooth front second gear is usually better option try riding with one or two fingers always on the clutch then you can feather (slip) clutch instead of labouring engine, this allows you to stay in the power. Clutch control is important, especially with two strokes.
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Trail riding - do you use first gear?

Post by Dodger »

Which model KDX do you have?

If you have the Australian "road legal" registered version with a metal fuel tank then the internal gearbox ratios are different from the "E" series non compliance version.

More info here: http://www.kdxrider.net/forums/viewtopi ... 90&t=10878

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Trail riding - do you use first gear?

Post by SS109 »

I only use 1st when in hike-a-bike type terrain. Actual trail riding I never use it. BTW, I run 13/48 gearing.
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Trail riding - do you use first gear?

Post by ohgood »

Worm wrote:I noticed first gear is really low (91 kdx200). When I have a slow speed corner I drop it down into first and it revs out so quick im almost instantly flicking it into second.
Am I better off keeping it in second, laboring the engine a little and using the torque to drive out of the corner? The bikes does seem to pull fine in second. Perhaps first is really only for taking off from standstill?

cheers guys
i'm old, and slow, but use 1st gear a lot. actually, i might use 6th gear .... once a week, if that. everything i do is 1,2,3,4... but even 4th is extremely rare.

mines a woods bike, ridden as a woods bike, and 'race' isn't a mode i operate in. if you do, change your gear ratios to suit. it's easy, cheap, fast, and going from "hare scramble" to "woods" mode in gearing is painless. :supz:
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Re: Trail riding - do you use first gear?

Post by Worm »

Bike is metal tank road going version. The ride I was on yesterday I only got into 6th on the way home on the main dirt road out if the forest. On the single tracks or 4wd tracks I would only get into 4th briefly, mostly 2nd and 3rd. Not sure on the gearing, ill check today when I give it a wash.
Clutching to keep it in the power seems pretty hardcore! I'm pretty much never on the pipe when riding single trails, would be way yo fast haha
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Trail riding - do you use first gear?

Post by Fitterman24 »

13/51 gearing here. 1st gear is useless with my ratio, but I knew that when I did it.
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Re: Trail riding - do you use first gear?

Post by Worm »

My gearing is 14/48. Should make first gear longer.... Anyway, first dirt bike, ill just ride it as is and keep her in second. :supz:
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Re: Trail riding - do you use first gear?

Post by sperz1 »

I noticed that last time I went out. I only used first to get going. After that I never used it again. Even it tight turns 2nd and working the clutch did the trick. 95 kdx200 us here.
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Re: Trail riding - do you use first gear?

Post by KDXGarage »

sperz1, you might want to check the date. The last post was from over 8 years ago.
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Re: Trail riding - do you use first gear?

Post by MoonStomper »

Well, while we’re on the topic here’s a great sprocket calculator resource for figuring out what you want gearing wise…
https://sprocketcalculator.com/
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577CCD5B-96DB-44E7-A366-5A1E95344DF1.jpeg (297.71 KiB) Viewed 82135 times
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Re: Trail riding - do you use first gear?

Post by Goat »

I only ride in 1st, when I screw up my line, rythm, or balance.
(I am in 1st gear a lot)
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Re: Trail riding - do you use first gear?

Post by Chuck78 »

First gear with a 13/50 seldom got used on my old 99 KDX220 on mostly faster trails, but 1st gear on my '97 KDX220 with a 12/44 gearing (close to a 13/48, 13/47 is stock) gets used ALL THE TIME, especially as I seek out a lot more technical terrain with large rock shelf steps and large boulders, steep ravines and deep ruts, etc... It all depends on the terrain you ride.
I test rode the '97 with the previous owner's supermoto gearing, but not with his KLX's supermoto wheels on it any longer (smaller diameter, required different gearing. He had a 14/45 gearing, which is ridiculous with a 110/100-18 rear tire. I didn't even notice the gearing handicap on the wide open terrain test ride, I subconsciously just slipped the clutch as needed to get it going from a stop.

First woods ride, I ripped around some flat terrain trails, and had the same sensation and feeling that I had on the test rides, WOW THIS THING IS SOOOOO MUCH MORE POWERFUL THAN MY WORN OUT '99!!!!!
Until... the first time I got down into the ravines and hollows, and tried a technical line up a steep 10 foot deep ditch...stalled immediately. Tried it again, stalled, tried an easier spot adjacent, stalled... the 14/45 gearing was only a handicap in the KDX's native terrain, tight technical woods riding.
Gear the KDX for the lowest speed you'll expect on the steepest most technical terrain you expect to come across. Then if you ride mostly wide open trails, just use 2nd primarily. If it's an issue, gear it 13/48 and second will be slightly lower so you won't have to lug it or downshift to first out of those tighter corners. If you max out 6th gear and never see any technical hard enduro type terrain or even any steep obstacles or ditches, then go 14/47, that's probably in the range of 13/44 or 13/45, if you think first gear is way too low.
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