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Old 02-08-2014, 07:15 AM   #1
Nodabs OP
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What is "offroad"

I've been reading some posts on tires lately and I see everyone throwing around references to 50/50 and 80/20 on road/off road, then reading further between the lines I'm seeing that they are calling gravel roads off road.
Is this what is considered off road, a gravel or dirt road?
I guess I come from a different background, off road to me is tight single track not the road to someone's house that I would drive my wife's Juke down.
Am I wrong in my thinking? Or are there a bunch of posers out there that talk tough?
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Old 02-08-2014, 07:44 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nodabs View Post
I've been reading some posts on tires lately and I see everyone throwing around references to 50/50 and 80/20 on road/off road, then reading further between the lines I'm seeing that they are calling gravel roads off road.
Is this what is considered off road, a gravel or dirt road?
I guess I come from a different background, off road to me is tight single track not the road to someone's house that I would drive my wife's Juke down.
Am I wrong in my thinking? Or are there a bunch of posers out there that talk tough?
Yer over-thinking it...

They (the tire sellers) are just trying to give you some guidelines on expected use for when you're tire shopping. For their purposes, anything that's not paved is "off road", whether that's gravel, sand, graded dirt or gnarly single-track. But don't get all tied up over it, it's just a marketing way of broadly categorizing their tires.

So, when you see 80/20 or 90/10 on/off, they're just generally indicating that the intended use will be much more street-biased (again, PAVED street-biased).

You'll see that 50/50 is much more off-road oriented - ie, bigger knobbies.

And, similarly, a 20/80 on/off is pretty nearly just a DOT-approved full knobby.

So, there y'go...
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Old 02-08-2014, 07:46 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nodabs View Post
I've been reading some posts on tires lately and I see everyone throwing around references to 50/50 and 80/20 on road/off road, then reading further between the lines I'm seeing that they are calling gravel roads off road.
Is this what is considered off road, a gravel or dirt road?
I guess I come from a different background, off road to me is tight single track not the road to someone's house that I would drive my wife's Juke down.
Am I wrong in my thinking? Or are there a bunch of posers out there that talk tough?
Hers some random photos of roads - no single track in sight.










On a long weekend there will be a convoy of 4x4 , pedestians, light aircraft and fishermen, Some beaches have speed signs and mobile patrols with radar.

Maybe your horizons and definitions are too restrained by the single track, there is a whole lot more adventure out there.
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Old 02-08-2014, 07:53 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nodabs View Post
I've been reading some posts on tires lately and I see everyone throwing around references to 50/50 and 80/20 on road/off road, then reading further between the lines I'm seeing that they are calling gravel roads off road.
Is this what is considered off road, a gravel or dirt road?
I guess I come from a different background, off road to me is tight single track not the road to someone's house that I would drive my wife's Juke down.
Am I wrong in my thinking? Or are there a bunch of posers out there that talk tough?
Most people who say "off road" simply mean "off pavement".
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Old 02-08-2014, 07:59 AM   #5
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One way to look at it:

Is it a public roadway? If so, it's "on road". I must say I've seen some single track public roadways before, so even that is questionable.

I'm personally thinking if it is a public roadway that has been maintained to the point of being passable by a Honda Accord, even if they have to creep along at 4 mph it is "on road".

Off road is exactly that in the strictest sense - off the public road ways.

As for tires, it is a subjective rating of how bad they are:
  • 50/50 is half ass on either surface.
  • 60/40 is a bit better on the road than off and
  • 40/60 is the reverse.
  • At the extremes a 90/10 sucks off road,
  • but the 10/90 only kinda sucks on the road.
So, as you see it is much like the proverbial 70% braking is with the front brake - totally subject to circumstances and riders. I've seen guys ride stupid trails doing wild stuff with a stinking street tire and I've "seen" (actually done) a bike that couldn't get out of its way on a simple grassy path with the old Avon "Slipster" on it.

A good gauge for "off road" versus "road" could be this:
  • Can you wash the front end out in a rut that takes up half the front wheel, and break ribs? It might be "off road"
  • Is the mud deep enough to swallow your rear wheel and hold the bike up? It might be "off road"
  • Is the wash board deep enough to have you endo when the front wheel sticks on one of the "ripples"? It might be "off road"
  • If you don't make it to the top of the hill you will your bike flip flop to the bottom or will you flip over backward trying to get over that rock lip in the middle? It might be "off road"
  • Are there grapevines hanging over the "road" that will grab your arm or, worse yet, your neck and rip you off your bike like octopus tentacles? It might be "off road"
  • Did you have to go around a rock bigger than your front wheel that was left by the great glacier? It might be "off road"
Any additions guys?
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markk53 screwed with this post 02-08-2014 at 08:06 AM
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Old 02-08-2014, 08:16 AM   #6
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Set the mouse down, go ride and find out
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Old 02-08-2014, 08:23 AM   #7
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To me as a nearly street only rider it's mild off road as soon as it's not paved. Next level are ways that are mainly used by heavy working machines. (I'd never use my bike for such.) But real off road is something that's not regularily frequented by other vehicles at all. (Seldomly I go there by ATV and then only a few metres.)
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Old 02-08-2014, 08:27 AM   #8
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One ride may include many different surface conditions. Do you expect a mile-by-mile breakdown of different surfaces?

For brevity we all leave out some details of each ride. I'm glad of it. My rides on ATV trails always include about 30 to 50% pavement. Then again, about half of those ATV trails are nothing to brag about.

But then perhaps someone is getting away with bragging . . .
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Old 02-08-2014, 08:50 AM   #9
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Forget surface...off-road means more fixation targets like a steep drop off trail edge especially at a curve or sudden loud noise or flash of a flushed animal, along with tighter curves, steeper hills and cambers, and obstacles, not found on paved.
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Old 02-08-2014, 09:26 AM   #10
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Sorry, I was making a smart assed comment about what passes for off road to a lot people.
I am a trials rider, stuff that looks impassable to other people looks like a slightly interesting section to me.
What I am getting at is that most people consider a "road" hardcore offroading.
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Old 02-08-2014, 09:38 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nodabs View Post
Sorry, I was making a smart assed comment about what passes for off road to a lot people.
I am a trials rider, stuff that looks impassable to other people looks like a slightly interesting section to me.
What I am getting at is that most people consider a "road" hardcore offroading.
No sorry needed, I just prioritized, since rough surface I adapted to fast, what I listed is what's challenging, along with No Services signs.
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Old 02-08-2014, 09:46 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by rocker59 View Post
Most people who say "off road" simply mean "off pavement".
That's my definition, aren't I the adventerous type
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Old 02-08-2014, 10:23 AM   #13
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As a self-aware grammar snob, I try not to use the term "off-road" to describe any of the surfaces I ride on, because, well, they're all roads. I'd rather use the term "dirt" or "off-pavement."

I think the issue lies in the fact that motorcycles are inherently unstable, so lower-traction environments are automatically far more challenging than they would be for a double-track vehicle. Sliding around on dirt can occur just as easily on a graded back road as it can on a narrow trail in the woods. It's just a question of the other obstacles that can pop up - which there are certainly more of on "true" "off-road" surfaces.
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Old 02-08-2014, 12:57 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nodabs View Post
Sorry, I was making a smart assed comment about what passes for off road to a lot people.
I am a trials rider, stuff that looks impassable to other people looks like a slightly interesting section to me.
What I am getting at is that most people consider a "road" hardcore offroading.
Wait, this whole thread was just you making a jab at people who have a different perspective than you on what constitutes "off-road"? I feel foolish for having missed it.

Gosh, aren't you the hero, then.

Your internet penis must be t - h - i - s big...
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Old 02-08-2014, 01:05 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nodabs View Post
Sorry, I was making a smart assed comment about what passes for off road to a lot people.
I am a trials rider, stuff that looks impassable to other people looks like a slightly interesting section to me.
What I am getting at is that most people consider a "road" hardcore offroading.
I have found that anyone that puts the effort in to criticize others in this manner is exaggerating his own abilities to make himself look bitchin'. Who cares what people consider to be offroad? What point are you trying to make? I think you're full o shit and probably not as gifted a rider you think you might be.
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