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Old 06-02-2008, 08:19 PM   #1
WarriorWithin1 OP
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Ninja Dual Sport

Hi all,

My name is Joseph. I currently ride an 06 Boulevard M50. Previously rode an 86 Vulcan 750. Wich I just sold today.

My wife wants to ride cruisers but she is afraid of the ones I have. (BRC, MSF, Rider's Edge comments, yadda yadda) So we are selling the Vulcan, my buddy has an 06 Ninja 250 he's selling for $1,800. Starting out on that is more appealing to my wife, though she has no intention of keeping the ninjette as her primary ride after she learns on it.

I've always been very impressed with the 250. WHen I was looking for my first bike I was REALLY torn between the ninja 250, and the V-strom. Totaly different bikes I know. I didnt end up with either because of the deals I found. I plan to buy the ninjette, and as my wife is getting her feel for the road, I want to convert it to a ninja dual sport. Kinda V-strom style. Like a mini Wee-Strom. I know it can do some LIGHT offroading even in stock form. Gravel roads, fire roads, dirt trails, nothing technical or any serious mudding, just exploration. No jumps, or REAL mud, and sand. (not for me anyway)

What negative effects would nobby tires have on the ninjette's street performance? My M50 is an exellent street bike. So the ninja will convert to a dual sport that is better at pavement than a normal dual sport, but not as great at technical offroading as a true dual. (no jumps or anything like that)

Along the way my kids can learn to ride on the ninja and my buddies' wives too if they want. It will have function and use after my wife's learning time. I am also trying to work in a sneaky way to meet my adventure / exploration desires. (buying a DS is not likely for multiple reasons)

Thanks for your insight.
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Old 06-02-2008, 08:40 PM   #2
Lochlyn_Deckard
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Ninja 500 Dirt Bike

Related: New Kawasaki Twin Sport 500 -www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=171094
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Old 06-02-2008, 08:43 PM   #3
ridewestKTM
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Sounds scary

The primary thing wrong is the the lack of steering "trail" Any uneven surface will tend to twist the handle bars and go unstable. A street bike like the one proposed may have as little as 2 or 3 inches of trail. The worst of the dual sports are > 4" . Damping will be wrong which besides comfort will impare traction. The weight distribution will be good but IMO the best weight distributions -when they fall - tend to fall fast/hard.

I hate to rain on your plan but I wouldn't do it.

I had a RZ350 and had reason to go off asphault - I had to either spin or slide the rear to keep it upright.

IMO
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Old 06-03-2008, 04:35 PM   #4
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There is at least one account of a Ninja 250 on these forums doing light offroad in STOCK form. That's not really what I am asking though.

What I am wondering is what negative effects will nobbie tires have on the ninjette's pavement abilities?

If you took the ninjette down dirt, gravel roads, and light trails, wouldnt you rather it had nobbies than street slicks?

Take a looky at this ninja motard.
http://forums.ninja250.org/viewtopic...der=&highlight=
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Old 06-03-2008, 04:41 PM   #5
crooked roads
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WarriorWithin1
Hi all,

My name is Joseph. I currently ride an 06 Boulevard M50. Previously rode an 86 Vulcan 750. Wich I just sold today.

My wife wants to ride cruisers but she is afraid of the ones I have. (BRC, MSF, Rider's Edge comments, yadda yadda) So we are selling the Vulcan, my buddy has an 06 Ninja 250 he's selling for $1,800. Starting out on that is more appealing to my wife, though she has no intention of keeping the ninjette as her primary ride after she learns on it.

I've always been very impressed with the 250. WHen I was looking for my first bike I was REALLY torn between the ninja 250, and the V-strom. Totaly different bikes I know. I didnt end up with either because of the deals I found. I plan to buy the ninjette, and as my wife is getting her feel for the road, I want to convert it to a ninja dual sport. Kinda V-strom style. Like a mini Wee-Strom. I know it can do some LIGHT offroading even in stock form. Gravel roads, fire roads, dirt trails, nothing technical or any serious mudding, just exploration. No jumps, or REAL mud, and sand. (not for me anyway)

What negative effects would nobby tires have on the ninjette's street performance? My M50 is an exellent street bike. So the ninja will convert to a dual sport that is better at pavement than a normal dual sport, but not as great at technical offroading as a true dual. (no jumps or anything like that)

Along the way my kids can learn to ride on the ninja and my buddies' wives too if they want. It will have function and use after my wife's learning time. I am also trying to work in a sneaky way to meet my adventure / exploration desires. (buying a DS is not likely for multiple reasons)

Thanks for your insight.
Cheap price . Grap it ,do bunch street miles then sell for same price and buy a Small bike for off-road .....
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Old 06-03-2008, 04:56 PM   #6
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I like your mind. Methodical, devious, deliberate.

With my wife, it woudl probably backfire. I will have to think on that some more.
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Old 06-03-2008, 05:16 PM   #7
Lochlyn_Deckard
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WarriorWithin1

... Take a looky at this ninja motard.
http://forums.ninja250.org/viewtopic...er=&highlight=
Wow! I missed that thread. Thanks for posting the link.
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Old 06-03-2008, 05:48 PM   #8
grae313
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I assume you've explored ninja250.org? This is a great resource for this bike, and explains what modifications need to be done to fit knobbies on. As for the effect on street performance, isn't this question non-specific to the ninja? I mean, you will be going from 16" to 17" so a bit less cornering response, and then the fact that knobbies aren't great for street riding in general... performance will inevitably be sacrificed to some degree. I agree that the biggest issue is the suspension. If all you want to do is explore some dirt/gravel roads at a gentle pace you should be fine.
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Old 06-03-2008, 06:39 PM   #9
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I did research the ninja250 forums and found nothing. I even posted the SAME topic over there and got little interest. Not suprosed since most of those riders are more interested in street performance.

If there is information over there on how to fit nobbies then surely my idea must not be THAT far fetched!
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Old 06-03-2008, 07:36 PM   #10
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This guys scrunchie really wierded me out.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZgUFP...eature=related

But the video shows a couple ninja 250s flying down gravel roads, and even doing a bit of water crossings, and mudholes. Nothing supreme of course but I am no interested in hardcore offroading. I think the 250 would be really nice for the street portions required to get to the adventure areas. And the price is nice. Did I menation $1,800 for an 06 w 4k miles on the clock?

Needs tires.
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Old 06-04-2008, 06:52 AM   #11
mark1305
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Fitting knobbies may present you with the challenge of fitting the right size - the same size knobbies(TKC80) as the dual sport street tires(Tourance) on my F650 really fill up all the mud scraper & fender clearance.

I've found on the F 650 that the extra vibes from the knobs on pavement gets on my nerves after a while (which is why I have two sets of wheels to make swapping back and forth an easy proposition). On a lighter bike like the Ninja 250 it may be more of an issue - or not. Depends on the rider's preferences.

On the other hand, for moderate forays on dirt and gravel roads and easy trails with no hardcore hill climbing or descending, a street oriented dual sport tire like the Metzeler Tourance or Avon Distanzia may be the best compromise.

Even a relatively new rider can ride a standard street bike through some fun places. When I started out on a Honda CB 160 back in the 60s, our little group of riders mostly on similar types of bikes took them everywhere. Paved roads, dirt roads, idle clay & kaolin mines, power & gasline right of ways. All on street tires. I think one time I put a rear "scrambler" type tire on the 160, but only once - it had more liabilities on rain slick pavement than it ever helped out on dirt.

So what I'm getting at is that a bike doesn't have to be modded much at all towards a specialty - out of the box most standard type street bikes are suitable for lots of stuff. But modern street/dual sport tires are great for that 80/20 steet/dirt kind of use.

Edit: And oh yeah, I like the Ninja 250s and think they are a great starter bike or even a good urban/suburban commuter for experienced riders.
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Old 06-04-2008, 08:24 AM   #12
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I would think by the time you needed special tires you would want to be able to stand on the pegs, and at least for me this would have been almost impossible on a Ninja 250 because of the riding position. Perhaps a smaller person could do it OK.
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Old 06-04-2008, 09:54 AM   #13
grae313
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WarriorWithin1
I did research the ninja250 forums and found nothing. I even posted the SAME topic over there and got little interest. Not suprosed since most of those riders are more interested in street performance.

If there is information over there on how to fit nobbies then surely my idea must not be THAT far fetched!
Whoops, I'm full of shit . Here's the deal--no one makes 16" knobbies, and I don't know about 17" but I think they make "sort of" knobbies for this size, but the modifications to the bike to fit these tires are not at all straight forward. http://faq.ninja250.org/wiki/I_want_..._bigger_wheels.

But check this out!!! http://forums.ninja250.org/viewtopic...=671107#671107



Street tires. Get that Ninja and go! I've been learning on one for the last year and I absolutely love it.
-Jessica
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Old 06-04-2008, 03:01 PM   #14
WarriorWithin1 OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mark1305
Fitting knobbies may present you with the challenge of fitting the right size - the same size knobbies(TKC80) as the dual sport street tires(Tourance) on my F650 really fill up all the mud scraper & fender clearance.

I've found on the F 650 that the extra vibes from the knobs on pavement gets on my nerves after a while (which is why I have two sets of wheels to make swapping back and forth an easy proposition). On a lighter bike like the Ninja 250 it may be more of an issue - or not. Depends on the rider's preferences.

On the other hand, for moderate forays on dirt and gravel roads and easy trails with no hardcore hill climbing or descending, a street oriented dual sport tire like the Metzeler Tourance or Avon Distanzia may be the best compromise.

Even a relatively new rider can ride a standard street bike through some fun places. When I started out on a Honda CB 160 back in the 60s, our little group of riders mostly on similar types of bikes took them everywhere. Paved roads, dirt roads, idle clay & kaolin mines, power & gasline right of ways. All on street tires. I think one time I put a rear "scrambler" type tire on the 160, but only once - it had more liabilities on rain slick pavement than it ever helped out on dirt.

So what I'm getting at is that a bike doesn't have to be modded much at all towards a specialty - out of the box most standard type street bikes are suitable for lots of stuff. But modern street/dual sport tires are great for that 80/20 steet/dirt kind of use.

Edit: And oh yeah, I like the Ninja 250s and think they are a great starter bike or even a good urban/suburban commuter for experienced riders.
Thank you! that is the useful information I was hoping for.



Wow Jessica! that is an ubelievabl report! Naye sayers need to go check that out. I think you got into way more than I plan to do.
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Old 06-04-2008, 05:03 PM   #15
grae313
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WarriorWithin1
Wow Jessica! that is an ubelievabl report! Naye sayers need to go check that out. I think you got into way more than I plan to do.
well, I'd love to take credit for those but that was someone else
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