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Old 05-24-2019, 10:25 AM   #1
davidji
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Which bike for street and beginner kart track fun?

So I'm thinking of buying a motorcycle for street fun and to learn to ride kart track.

I see a few categories:
Supermoto.

Mini (Grom, TNT135). If I were to buy one of these pretty sure I'd do a TNT 135. I've ridden a Grom and enjoyed it but doubt I'd ride it much on the street. A little more power there would go a long way.

Small street bikes like the CB300R, Duke 390. Do bikes like this make sense on a kart track? For a beginner? Or would it be more fun on a sumo or mini?

What do you think?
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Old 05-24-2019, 10:30 AM   #2
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Japanese 250 dual sport with two sets of wheels/tires? lots of versatility for not much money either new or used
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Old 05-24-2019, 10:48 AM   #3
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The Grom's are a blast on the street and on the kart track. Obviously speed may be limited depending on what you're doing on the street, but if you're using it around town, it's perfect. I definitely miss mine.
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Old 05-24-2019, 12:02 PM   #4
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I ride a KLX140 with sumo wheels, lots fun could use more power. I raced against KX60s and those are pretty fast for such a small bike. Maybe KX100 also.

A small ninja would be fine also

Depends on tracks I usually ride at sonoma
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Old 05-24-2019, 12:11 PM   #5
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Street bikes like the Duke/Ninja/CBR300 are a no-go for the kart track.

If you like working on bikes/ doing valves/ top-end etc. an MX-bike based sumo will work. Make sure you know what you are getting into before getting an "hours" bike. You're in for a surprise if you are used to street bike intervals.

If you just want to ride it and put it away dirty - CRF230L! You can even rent one from Brok at one of the supermoto USA events before you commit.

The mini bikes do look like fun, and I've seen them about. But my only experience with them is riding a Grom at Sonoma. And I thought it was extremely boring and slow on that track. Maybe a tighter track like stockton, or a faster mini would be better.
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Old 05-24-2019, 01:08 PM   #6
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Wr250x or Drz400sm!

Grom is not freeway leagal
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Old 05-24-2019, 01:11 PM   #7
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They(minis) work fine on a kart track but a wr250x would be the best choice for balancing track and street fun while being low maintenance.
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Old 05-24-2019, 01:20 PM   #8
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Just get a small dirtbike and throw a sportsman tire setup on it.

I started with a TTR125 with BT45s on the stock rims. You can get those bikes (TTRs, XR100s, CRF150Fs, etc) all day long for under $2000. Cheapest and easiest way to get out there, and you learn a lot wailing those little bikes around.

Go to the open trackdays, ride around with other bikes, see if you can try out someone else's grom/SM/mini roadracer, and decide for yourself where you want to go from there.
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Old 05-24-2019, 04:13 PM   #9
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Just get a small dirtbike and throw a sportsman tire setup on it.

I started with a TTR125 with BT45s on the stock rims. You can get those bikes (TTRs, XR100s, CRF150Fs, etc) all day long for under $2000. Cheapest and easiest way to get out there, and you learn a lot wailing those little bikes around.

Go to the open trackdays, ride around with other bikes, see if you can try out someone else's grom/SM/mini roadracer, and decide for yourself where you want to go from there.
needs to be streetable according to OP
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Old 05-24-2019, 04:49 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by R3DS!X View Post
needs to be streetable according to OP
I was trying to be realistic about how often I'd use an off road/off highway only bike. Sportsman seems like the cheapest way to start, but not sure I'd be using it in either sumo or dirt form enough to make it worthwhile.

I guess if I've spent less money, that alone might make it worthwhile. Sell it when I'm done with it.

Would a supermoto class be a good starting place before buying a bike?
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Old 05-25-2019, 12:13 AM   #11
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At Sonoma a 300-400 is fine. I rode with them before they were faster than me anyway.

KX60 I was riding with they're pretty fast. There was another one with a female rider and she was owning the other minis. They're not street legal though.



I saw these little guys also Ohvale


This is a video of the Ohvale 190

youtu.be/6XqizFhsLwI

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Old 05-25-2019, 07:25 AM   #12
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How about any of the Yamaha RD series? Relatively cheap, easy to maintain, street legal, decades of racing development and still pretty fast.
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Old 05-25-2019, 07:49 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by APpy View Post
Street bikes like the Duke/Ninja/CBR300 are a no-go for the kart track.
I've seen a dude sliding sideways into T1 at Sonoma kart track on a Ninja 400. Looked a heckuva lot faster than I go through there.
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Old 05-25-2019, 07:54 AM   #14
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wow, why didn't I think of this sooner. I bought my kid 3 bikes, the TTR125L, KX80 and CRF70R. I think I might need to supermoto that KX80 for her to EVENTUALLY grow into.....lol
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Old 05-25-2019, 04:51 PM   #15
davidji
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Originally Posted by sckego View Post
I've seen a dude sliding sideways into T1 at Sonoma kart track on a Ninja 400. Looked a heckuva lot faster than I go through there.
So what would be the disadvantages of e.g. a CB300R vs a WR250X on the kart track? A quick check says 315# vs 300# wet weight. If true it has a 15# disadvantage. But still pretty light, and a practical street bike (compared e.g. with a TNT 135). Cheaper new than a used WR250X.

Are the ergos of a standard like that a disadvantage? Is it harder to prep for the track? Not gonna crash as well?

A while back when I looked into this I remember seeing some mini dirt bike sumos on Craigslist. Not seeing them now. But the sub 200# weight makes them tempting, street legal or no.
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