It's no secret that motocross is a dirty sport, but it is also quite hardwearing on your bike and while maintaining it is something that is imperative to the performance of the bike, most people tend to ignore it until the bike breaks down in the middle of a race and they are left floundering in the mud while everyone else rides off into the distance. Maintaining your motocross bike is not a difficult task, it just requires some basic knowledge and regular attention before and after races and periodically during the racing season. Below are some tips for keeping your bike in pristine condition.
There are some checks that you must carry out every time you take your bike out for a ride, whether it is an event or a practice run. Before you get on the bike, spend a few minutes going over the most obvious areas of the bike looking for anomalies. Specific points to check are the chain, the wheels and spokes, the air filter and every visible nut and bolt on the bike. Make sure the chain is free from distortions and is well lubricated, and clean the air filter or replace it if it is looking past its best.
Before you take your motocross bike out for an intensive practice run or a scheduled event, there are some more stringent checks you need to carry out. One of the most important areas on any vehicle to check are the rotational bearings used in the swingarm, wheels and headstem assemblies. Bearings will regularly need re-packing with grease and also need to be checked for mechanical tolerances (or 'play'). If you find that a bearing feels 'loose' or there is more friction than expected, replace it immediately.
All 2-stroke motocross bikes sold nowadays come with a power valve system that helps to improve operating efficiency and therefore power output throughout the rev range. Due to the nature of this system, the power valves require regular maintenance to keep them running efficiently and effectively. Cleaning modern power valves is not an easy task as some can contain over 40 separate parts. If you decide to take the job on yourself, get yourself a workshop manual and do not use cleaning materials that will score or damage the aluminum surface of the power valve.
If you do not have one, go and buy a manual for your bike as even if you are mechanically competent, you will need one for reference on torque settings, part numbers, and build and re-build processes. Other points to remember are frequent oil changes depending on how hard you ride your bike (between every 4 and 10 hours of riding), and making sure the tires are suitable for the riding surface and are in good condition.
Further Reading : MX Parts