hard parts testing overview
One of the greatest things about dirt bikes—aside from the fact that they are scientifically proven to attract a suitable mate faster and more effectively than a 55-gallon drum of Sex Panther cologne—is that they can be modified. No matter what platform you’re starting with, there are endless combinations of performance accessories that can be bolted on, installed, swapped out, and applied in order to fine-tune your machine specifically for you.
Of course, it all ends and begins with hard parts: fork springs, mufflers, tires, clutch levers, big bore cylinder kits (go ahead, have your little laugh), and everything else under the sun that is designed to enhance the function of your already-awesome steed. Here at Keefer Inc., we’ve been testing hard parts since Ryan Dungey was in diapers, and the experience we’ve amassed allows us to properly articulate exactly how each individual component performs, and what the strengths and weaknesses of each are. We strongly encourage you to browse through our product tests—again, doing so with an open mind—to see if any of the reviewed items tickle your fancy or sound like they can help address an issue that you’re having or an area of your machine that you’d like to improve upon.
Now, before you dive in, a couple of quick items to remember: first, running good tires on your bike is essential to it performing at its full potential; don’t even think about hopping up your engine if you’re riding on bald rubber. That sounds like common sense, but you’d be surprised! Also, don’t spend a ton of money on various products without first taking the “free” steps toward getting the most out of your bike. What do we mean? Well, if the front end of your bike is deflecting on square-edged bumps, try going in a few clicks on the fork’s rebound before dropping a few thousand bucks on a spring fork conversion kit! Additionally, don’t slap a new pipe on your two-stroke unless you (or a qualified mechanic) have properly tuned the thing first.
And, finally, remember this: performance modifications are awesome, but don’t rely on them as a crutch for poor riding technique or lack of fitness. 30-minutes on a rowing machine four times a week may lead you to way bigger gains than thousands spent in aftermarket goods, and practicing your corner speed could net you a much larger increase than any offset triple clamp ever could. Do your homework, follow your instincts, and reach out to us if you have any questions—Keefer Inc. has got your back!