As an Amazon Affiliate DirtBikePlanet.com earns from qualifying purchases.
When most individuals consider dust biking, they in all probability think about tearing down trails and plowing by dust and dust. That is actually an correct image, however what occurs as soon as winter rolls round? Many followers of this sport will understand they’re lacking out on lots of experience time each time there’s snow on the bottom. So now the search is on for the perfect dust bike for snow using. We’re right here to assist!
A superb snow-ready dust bike ought to be pretty mild, highly effective, and straightforward to manage. Many individuals have discovered that light-weight bikes with 450-550cc engines are among the greatest fashions to select from. Fortunately numerous manufacturers are as much as the problem and have created dust bikes that may deal with snow simply in addition to they deal with dust or mud. Our high 5 picks are listed under:
Many dust bikes will must be transformed to snow bikes for the complete winter expertise, however the fashions listed above will give a very good begin to anybody who desires to tackle the problem of snow using, transformed or not. We’ll discover extra particulars of those bikes under, in addition to different essential data that potential snow bikers ought to know.
KTM 450 XC-F
- MSRP: $10,999
- Engine Measurement: 449.9cc
- Engine Sort: 4-Stroke
- Energy: 52hp
- Weight: 222.6lbs
If pace is your high precedence, the KTM 450 XC-F ought to positively be in your listing! These fashions have been recognized to achieve high speeds of 110 mph and their frames are exceptionally light-weight as nicely (supply).
This mixture is ideal for many who need to use their bikes in snowy situations. The engine is highly effective sufficient to propel the bike by powerful trails and the body is mild sufficient to be maneuverable.
The 450 XC-F additionally supplies a cushty and adjustable using expertise. The handlebars could be raised or lowered into 4 totally different positions, which makes it simpler for a variety of individuals to take pleasure in this bike. It additionally has a vibrant orange body, which is able to make it straightforward to identify in a snowy panorama!
For extra data, go to the KTM web site.
Husqvarna FC 450
- MSRP: $10,399
- Engine Measurement: 450cc
- Engine Sort: 4-stroke
- Energy: 63hp
- Weight: 222.7lbs
The FC 450 is a smooth and highly effective mannequin that honors the Husqvarna legacy. This bike is designed to maximise energy whereas concurrently enhancing agility. The newer fashions could be paired with the myHusqvarna app through Bluetooth, which makes using a extra immersive expertise.
When it comes to terrain adaptability, the Husqvarna can be extraordinarily succesful. This bike’s engine contains a wide range of settings that can be utilized to deal with sand, hardpack, gravel, and even moist highway situations. Rain, snow, or shine, the FC 450 can ship an ideal efficiency.
For extra data, go to the Husqvarna web site.
- MSRP: $9,899
- Engine Measurement: 450cc
- Engine Sort: 4-stroke
- Energy: 53hp
- Weight: 236lbs
Yamaha is one other widespread model that makes high-quality dust bikes. The YZ450FX is a implausible bike to experience throughout all terrains and seasons of the 12 months. When it’s transformed right into a snow bike, it’s onerous to match this mannequin’s efficiency.
The YZ450FX has superior suspension that helps to clean the experience and overcome any powerful bumps and dips within the highway. Riders can select to transform their bikes into snow bikes, however the base unit comes with implausible tires that present sturdiness and traction with out weighing down the entire body.
For extra data, go to the Yamaha web site.
- MSRP: $9,599
- Engine Measurement: 450cc
- Engine Sort: 4-stroke
- Energy: 52.4hp
- Weight: 232.7lbs
Many riders think about the KX 450 to be among the finest and strongest bikes in the marketplace as we speak. The mix of the compact construct and robust engine has made this one of the widespread fashions to make use of for snow using.
Kawasaki bikes have at all times been constructed with pace and energy in thoughts. Customers who’ve transformed these bikes into snow bikes have reported that they get superb traction and have had an ideal expertise (see extra about this bike as a transformed snow bike right here). This fan-favorite is assured to be an ideal dust bike whether or not you’re using on trails or snowy fields.
For extra data, go to the Kawasaki web site.
- MSRP: $9,599
- Engine Measurement: 449cc
- Engine Sort: 4-stroke
- Energy: 55.2hp
- Weight: 230lbs
Honda is one other massive identify on this planet of dust bikes. The newer fashions of the CRF450R have been beneficial as a very good candidate for a snow bike. It may be utilized by adults and youngsters alike and the engine supplies loads of energy for a very good experience.
This mannequin additionally comes with a sealed airbox, which is a large profit for a snow bike. Generally snow and ice can clog the airbox when the snow is deep sufficient. This may decelerate your bike’s response and may stall your engine.
As well as, the slim and light-weight body of the CRF450R makes it straightforward to show and maneuver even if you’re driving at excessive speeds.
For extra data, go to the Honda web site.
TIP: Be sure to aren’t lacking the fundamentals! For an ideal broad overview on methods to go about using a dust bike within the snow, see the article Using Grime Bikes on Snow: How nicely does it work? (Plus some ideas!).
Different Options to Look For
In fact, we’ve solely scratched the floor with the 5 bike fashions above. Every model provides totally different trims, kinds, and years for his or her bikes so the choices are just about infinite. So in case you’re not within the bikes listed above and are trying to find the correct dust/snow bike standards, listed below are the fundamentals of what you have to be looking ahead to.
Engine energy is a vital issue to think about if you’re on the lookout for a dust bike to experience within the snow. Your bike wants the additional energy to have the ability to journey by the extra cussed terrain.
The most effective snow bikes often have engines which might be between 450-550cc. If youngsters are using them, the engines can afford to be much less highly effective (often all the way down to 350-250cc relying on their weight). These weaker engines ought to primarily be used for flat trails as a result of they will’t deal with steep, snowy inclines.
We talked about airboxes briefly earlier than, however this is a crucial part to think about for a snow bike. Particularly in case you drive by deep powder, there’s a very good probability that your bike’s airbox will replenish with snow and turn out to be clogged. In case your bike doesn’t include a protected airbox, you’ll be able to add an outerwear air filter to supply an additional layer of security.
Nonetheless, in case you solely plan to experience your bike by a few inches of snow, this shouldn’t be an enormous drawback. Most individuals gained’t actually need a protected/sealed airbox until they plan to plow by deep powder.
Weight is one other issue to think about if you’re looking for a snow-capable dust bike. You need one thing that may be capable of keep on the highest layer with out sinking too rapidly.
The fashions we mentioned above will weigh about 220-250 lbs however many dust bikes weigh way more than that. Some are within the 320-270 lbs vary, which isn’t ideally suited for snow using.
Nonetheless, in case you convert your bike to a snow configuration and take away/change the tires, you’ll be able to generally shave a few of that weight off. Lighter is best in relation to snow biking. You’ll additionally be capable of take pleasure in extra maneuverability in case you have a light-weight mannequin, and that may be a large plus.
Snow Convertible or Not
We’ve talked about changing dust bikes into snow bikes a few instances and it is a important issue to remember. Conventional dust bikes can deal with lots of various kinds of terrain, however snow is a difficult drawback to beat.
Generally it’s greatest to vary the design to suit the terrain. There are actually numerous snow bike conversion kits in the marketplace. These often change the entrance tire with a entrance ski and the rear tire with a treaded observe system. Fortunately these conversion kits are largely common and may match with most main bike manufacturers.
The essential factor to know is whether or not or not your chosen conversion equipment has a bike-specific set up equipment that may suit your specific dust bike. Whereas the gear is often common, among the connecting items can be particular.
It’s greatest to verify the supply of a snow bike conversion equipment for the bike you’re contemplating earlier than making a shopping for determination on a particular bike. Older bikes may not be capable of work with new conversion expertise, so preserve that in thoughts if you’re trying to find a equipment.
Lastly, the burden and age of the rider ought to be considered. Youthful youngsters are smaller and lighter than adults, in order that they have totally different wants in relation to selecting a snow-capable dust bike.
Once you’re looking for a snow bike for a kid/preteen you’ll be able to often decide one thing that’s lighter and has a much less highly effective engine. Smaller riders gained’t want as a lot engine energy and staying light-weight is nice for pace and agility.
Heavier/older riders will want a extra highly effective engine to compensate for his or her bigger dimension. They need to additionally attempt to discover essentially the most light-weight mannequin that they will in relation to snow using.
2-Strokes vs 4-Strokes within the Snow
Each time there’s a query of the perfect dust bikes for (clean), the two-stroke vs four-stroke debate comes up once more. These engines are each fairly highly effective these days and may present comparable ranges of efficiency in most settings.
4-strokes have gotten more and more extra frequent within the trendy market, however two-strokes nonetheless have loyal followers as nicely. In relation to driving within the snow, some folks think about bikes with fuel-injected two-stroke engines to be the only option. It is because these bikes have highly effective engines and are fairly light-weight.
The primary drawback with this standards is that these bikes could be more durable to seek out these days they usually aren’t considerably higher than their four-stroke counterparts.
All of the bikes mentioned above are four-stroke fashions which might be completely able to dealing with snowy situations. They could be a bit heavier than two-strokes, however they’re nonetheless dependable and highly effective bikes.
So in the long run, it comes down to private desire. So long as your bike meets the factors for a very good dust bike (weight, engine energy, and so forth) it doesn’t matter an excessive amount of if it has a two-stroke or four-stroke engine.
When You Want Studded Tires/Snow Tires
As soon as the winter chill units in, you could be questioning when is the correct time to convey out the snow tires in your dust bike. Conventional tires are designed to supply nice grip and traction on a wide range of surfaces, so a skinny layer of powder gained’t have an effect on your experience a lot.
Nonetheless, as soon as the snow begins build up, it can turn out to be more durable and more durable to take care of stability and management with out a set of correct tires. If ice is a frequent drawback, studded tires are a very good resolution. They’ll dig into clean surfaces to supply higher traction and maneuverability. They cut back the chance of spinning out as nicely.
Typically, if there are between 2-8 inches of snow on the bottom, it’s a good suggestion to change out your commonplace tires for studded/snow tires. Something greater than 8 inches will get onerous for any dust bike to cope with, particularly if the snow is heavy (in accordance with many snow-versed dust bike homeowners).
Numerous bikers like to tear down trails with studded tires. The additional resistance is all a part of the enjoyable, so generally it’s value it to delay a full conversion. Try the video under to see how efficient studded tires could be on snowy trails!
When You Must Do a Snow Bike Conversion
In case your snow tires simply aren’t getting the job executed otherwise you need to take pleasure in a snowmobiling expertise, it could be time to think about a snow bike conversion. As talked about above, most dust bike tires turn out to be ineffective as soon as the snow will get deeper than 8 inches.
You now not have to decide on between a dust bike and a snowmobile as a result of you’ll be able to equip your bike with the identical fundamental design components. One of the crucial widespread conversion kits is the Polaris Timbersled. These kits come in several styles and sizes, however the base design is identical. Riders simply want to interchange their entrance tire with the ski and change the again tire with the rear observe system.
This observe system makes use of rotating treats to propel the bike ahead (nearly just like the wheel of a tank). As soon as it has been put in, you’ll be able to drive these bikes by nearly any snowy situation. Deep powder (12 inches or extra) ought to solely be tackled in case you have a transformed snow bike. A conventional bike will simply sink and get caught.
When you’re taken with performing a snow bike conversion, go to actionmotor.com to discover their lineup of Polaris Timbersled merchandise.
Take pleasure in Your Passion All Yr!
Snowy winters don’t imply that the enjoyable has to cease! Grime bikes are hardy autos that may deal with cold and warm situations. They only want the correct tires or snow gear to cope with the snow and ice.
Simply keep in mind that there are some mechanical limits your dust bike has and a few bodily limits you probably have as nicely. You’ll be able to find out about all these in my article about how chilly is just too chilly to experience a dust bike right here. You’ll be able to take pleasure in your pastime year-round so long as you might have the correct base bike and the correct seasonal gear.