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  1. For me its more of the way certain riders think they have a right to, and consider themselves more important than others because they are considered "top riders" so have a terrible attitude towards other riders. I can understand that the sections can alter whilst they await their turn, so feel they need to get in there before it changes too much. I've been on the receiving end many times (like I'm sure most have) were I have rode a section to find a big rock or a hole has appeared that wasn't there when I walked it. But this is still no excuse, they should just accept that its luck of the draw and things do even out in the long run.
  2. I think the GP model have the Tech forks which If I recall are the same spindle size as the rear. So the bearings will be 6004RS, someone else may correct me on this. You can knock the bearings out quite easily by using a long blunt flat screw driver for the first bearing by moving the internal spacer over slightly to one side and then just catching the edge of the bearing to tap out. Once this one is out just use a socket the same size as the spacer to easily tap out the other bearing. To re-fit knock in a bearing one side using a socket that is the same diameter as the bearing outer case then insert the spacer and do the same for the other side. the whole job takes ten minutes provided nothing is too corroded or damaged. Personally I like to flick out one of the rubber seals and fill with water proof grease then re-fit the seal, for added long term lubrication. However the bearings are pretty cheap to buy and simple to fit so its probably a bit over kill.
  3. Even if you have nowhere to practice, just doing figure of 8's and stop start balancing as smoothly as possible will help you get some connection with the bike and teach you body movement. Unlike road riding, for turning in trials you tend to lean opposite to the bike and also when riding your legs become part of the suspension, this is why you stand on the bike rather than sit. Just learning these 2 aspects makes a huge difference.
  4. Hughie, You have been given some sound advice so far. If you are not happy with the bike then I would advise to try and test out other bikes to see if you can find one you are happy with. However, trials is totally different to road biking. No offense but there is little to no technique, other than the very basic principals, like gear changing etc that you can take from road riding and apply to trials. Many road riders turn their hand to trials only to find it totally alien and very difficult, as Guy Martin found out! Trials is a fine art and takes years of practice and experience to master. The issues you have described maybe partly down to the bike, things can be altered to help over come this to some degree. But I suspect that the majority of the problems you are experiencing are down to a lack of proper trials riding technique. My advice then would be to, No1 go get some tuition, No2 go and practice with other trials riders of varying abilities, No3 do the mods required to tame the bike as much as possible, No4 try out different bikes.
  5. I'd be surprised if they chose to build trials bikes, I don't see there is any room in the market place for another brand starting out. If so it would have to be something very radical. But you never know! Interestingly I have heard rumours that KTM off road will be phased out and their off road section will be focused on the current brands Huskies & Gassers. Which would mean there would not be a "KTM" branded trials bike but will remain as Gas Gas. Would be nice if they updated the current gas gas trials bike though. I have owed gas gas's since the first water-cooled version back in the early 90's. I have a 2021 300 one now that is still a great bike but I feel is now a little dated and could do with some improvements.
  6. There are some really light weight comfy full protection suits available these days, like totty says ^^^ that cover your shoulders and elbows in addition to back, chest and kidneys. I have an Alpinestars (cost around £150) version that I use for enduro, its so light weight and comfy, I now also use it for trials, especially so if the terrain is hard and rocky. I also now wear decent knee protection (my knees are shot) to try and preserve them from further damage. Again if you get the decent ones you hardly notice you are wearing them, until you crash and they save your joints from impacts! I think if possible go to an off road motorbike/cycle shop and try a few on. Its important they fit correctly to be comfy and also work correctly! I bought a Jitsie one offline a while back and selected the wrong size, although it was the one that was recommended for my build and size. I have since returned it for a better size fit, but to be honest I still prefer my Alpinestars enduro full armour one.
  7. My personal gripe is the rules around marking, which has promoted inconsistent scoring in the sections. Not the observers fault, by any means. The rules are ambiguous and inconsistent, so it becomes confusing for observers on what is actually allowed, especially for those who are inexperienced. I think a stop and stop with foot down is fine, this helps riders to just settle and regroup to continue the section and is no big deal in my eyes. But reversing in my opinion, shouldn't be allowed, by this I mean purposeful reversing where a rider intentionally backs up. However, I appreciate that this can also create some ambiguity, especially when someone is stuck on a rock, tree root, log etc... and they are slightly rocking back and forth and the rear wheel is spinning to get the bike moving again. I guess though this for should be down to the observers' discretion especially if the rider is physically putting a lot of effort in to keep the bike moving. I've said this in previous posts; The world and the top flight at major championships is a totally different level to the one most riders are accustomed to. The style of riding is foreign and unattainable to most people, only for the select few very talented riders. Maybe its now that the sport requires a split - Extreme/Elite Trials (both indoor and outdoor) and Trials - with 2 sets of rules designed to be compatible with the style of riding for each category. Maybe in the extreme trials a rider can do pretty much as they please, reverse, cross path... within the section boundaries but are timed. In normal trials, stop is allowed however no reversing or re-crossing paths... On a good note, I think the timed sections in British championships is a step forward. Though after watching the last few rounds its obvious that either the sections require to kept at a certain length or the time extended slightly. The 1 minute is just a bit too tight, just a few seconds extra will make just the right difference.
  8. The only common trouble I have ever had owning many water cooled bikes is the thermostat. Which is easy to bypass should it fail during a trial, if you carry something to bridge the connections. Other than that I did have a bike where the fan ran backwards, this caused no issue until riding down then road at which point the bike boiled quickly and seized. Not sure what the main benefits are of water cooled is over air cooled, other than I assume more consistent running temperatures and the water cooled bikes do seem more powerful than air cooled equivalents.
  9. Unfortunately I have witnessed with my own eyes a top Spanish rider who competed a few years back be given a very harsh result on a section. Counter to this, a top British rider given, well lets just say... so long as the bike eventually got to the ends by one means or another, he got a favourable result. Don't get me wrong I have competed in the trial many times, the club, the volunteers and all involved should be commended for putting on what I still believe is the best trial in the world! I would just like to see the top riders back in the frame, and they should be encouraged to do so by their teams and sponsors... I'd like to see them have a fair crack at the trial with consistent observing for all riders across the board. I think it would also boost the prestige of the trial once more, and encourage the younger generation from all countries to give it a go, and/or even make it their goal to win it some day. Lets hope that Toni does decide to give it a go like he once mentioned 10+ years ago!
  10. This may well be the case at world level trials (my bold) where the style is different than most of us are accustomed to. But, its a combination of throttle, clutch, brake and body positioning - reacting in sync that makes a good all round trials rider. Learning to time all these so that you get the desired effect takes years of practice and skill. I guess the benefit of better clutch control is that if you miss time the throttle you can pick this up with the clutch. Try the thumb throttle and let us know how you go on, I'm interested to see if you do find a benefit. maybe with the modern style of riding where the clutch is heavily relied on may suit the thumb throttle.
  11. It will never happen, well at least not until he retires from top level trials. 3 reasons, possibly more 1. The SSDT, though still in my opinion the best trial in the world, has lost its status and appeal to the world runners, and the style of modern riding is not as suited to the style of the event. 2. The cost & effort for a foreign team to compete in the trial doesn't warrant the prestige the trial now lacks at top level. 3. Though welcomed by most, the threat of someone like Toni Bou coming and winning such a trial doesn't appeal to the status quo. He would likely be heavily penalised at every opportunity while more popular regular top runners get away with murder as usual. (I have witnessed many times some very dodgy decisions given in favour of top popular riders) Shame really cause I would love to ride in a trial along side Toni Bou and would love it if he was able to attempt a win fair an square.
  12. I put 50ml oil to 5 litres of fuel in my 2021 gas gas, however the recommendation is 70ml, but I find this causes excessive oil and carbon build up. But it depends on the bike make, its age and what the manufacturers recommend. Use a good quality fully synthetic oil for better lubrication, cleaner burning and a crisp engine response.
  13. I usually take a stiff hand brush, spatula, sponge and a gallon of water so just before I load up the bike I scrap off all the thick mud, brush off the loose dirt and then just sponge where I can. This stops the van from getting too dirty and only takes ten minutes or so at the end of the trial/practice to complete. It also saves me sweeping up off my driveway the thick lumps of mud after jet washing the bike off properly.
  14. Yeah, I get annoyed when people act this way. In general trials is a very safe and considerate off road sport that has little to no effect on the environment or the general public in the area. Unfortunately it gets stigmatised along with MX as being noisy and damaging. Don't get me wrong I'm a big fan of MX and ride one myself but trials is totally different and the impact much less yet it shares the same disregard from the folk who simply just don't like motor bikes especially off road ones. Interestingly there is a woodland local to me that is popular with walkers and mountain bikers. On the odd occasion I've been on my petrol trials bike I have experienced abuse from many folk walking there even though I kept off the paths and trails and stuck to the more overgrown areas. I recently test rode an EM trials bike at the same venue and most walkers didn't even bat an eyelid.
  15. As Pak Jeem says ^^^ I have used a heavy rubber mallet before now to give the tyre a good whack at the point its refusing to go on, this has worked, along with spraying on the WD40. Just be careful if you do whack it with a mallet that your head is well clear of the bounce back, trust me I've had a few near misses when not concentrating! You may have to just go a little beyond the 70psi, a little scary I know but if you do it as Pak mentioned it will be fine. I doubt you would need more than 100 psi or so, they do go with a very loud pop at that pressure when they finally go on the rim, and even though I know its coming it still makes me jump!
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