PRODUCT REPORT 36

PRODUCT REPORT 36

VON ZIPPER WISENHEIMER GOGGLE

APPLICATION: Seven different colors

PRICE: $42.50

RATING: 5

A few months ago we compiled a heap of goggles for an all-inclusive goggle buyer's guide, and since then we've been slowly but surely using them up during our bike testing sessions. A couple weeks ago, I drew the Von Zipper Wisenheimer Goggles from the stack. Unfamiliar with the goggle, I was impressed with the look and feel of the Wisenheimer. The goggle is pretty cool looking, and I was seduced by the contours of the silver frame and the cool Von Zipper logo.

At the track, I found that the frame has a comfortable fit (even for my flat-nosed Japanese face), even though the face foam is a little thin by motocross standards. The foam does, however, have a dense feel and I never encountered any sweat dripping problems. Vision is excellent in the Wisenheimer, as you can barely see any parts of the frame when riding. The strap is of the highest quality, and the lens is easy to pop in and out of the frame.

So why the average rating of 5? Here's the deal… On the cold winter morning that I first rode, I marveled at the goggle's venting system, as the lens simply refused to fog up. At mid-day as the track dried up, however, I found myself constantly pulling over to shake small pebbles out of my goggles, or wipe them from my eyes, even. Late in the day, when the track was completely dry and fine dust particles hung in the air, I figured out why the Wisenheimers vented so well in the morning. Upon close inspection, I discovered that the venting system is comprised of four holes on the front of the frame, which feed four holes bored directly in the lens. There is no foam, whatsoever, to help filter the dirt, or keep dust out. Hell, I may have well been riding in Smiths with a Roll-Off lens, sans the Roll-Offs!

Unless you ride on a completely dust-free, roost-free track, the Wisenheimer goggle has a major flaw that brings an otherwise great goggle down.

– Donn Maeda

Call 949/341-3075 or visit www.vonzipper.com

PWR ALL—ALUMINUM “STOCK FIT” RADIATORS

APPLICATION: 2004 Kawasaki KX250F, Suzuki RM-Z250

PRICE: $449 per set

RATING: 8

In the hands of a skilled rider, the new Kawasaki KX250F and Suzuki RM-Z250 four-strokes have been known to run a little hot. Heck, on a hot summer day, even some of our slower riders were able to get the new thumpers to run hot (perhaps because they weren't going fast enough to get sufficient air through the radiators?).

A quick tour through the pits at Anaheim 1 revealed oversized factory radiators on the Pro Circuit Kawasakis and the sole factory Suzuki of Brian Gray, but we found something different in the MotoworldRacing.com pits. Steve Boniface's RM-Z was indeed outfitted with a set of oversized radiators, but crew chief Ed Longacre reported that these were aftermarket units available to the general public. A few calls on Monday resulted in a set of PWR radiators on our desk on Tuesday, so we loaded up and headed to our regular testing spot down at the Cahuilla Creek Indian Reservation.

Initially, we rode a 20-minute moto with the stock radiators. Thanks to an unnamed factory mechanic who dialed us in with a set of stick-on temperature gauges, we were able to find that the temperature of the right-side radiator (the side which feeds air-cooled coolant back into the motor) was approximately 280 degrees.

Installing the PWR radiators was a 20-minute process, and both sides fit perfectly. Some trimming of the radiator hoses is required, as the longer radiators need less hose to get the job done. One thing we noticed while installing the PWR units is that they seemed beefier, with more side-impact damage resistance.

Once back on the track, we rode a second 20-minute moto and were stoked toind that the larger radiators helped our KX250F to run a full 30 degrees cooler, at 250 degrees. At $449, the PWR radiators are not cheap, but they will definitely help your RM-Z or KXF run cooler. If you are a fast rider who can get your bike to run hot, these babies are definitely worth a look.

-Garth Milan

Call 877/656-9256 or visit www.pwr-performance.com

GALFER WAVE ROTOR BRAKE KIT

APPLICATION: Most current bikes

PRICE: From $129

RATING: 9

For the first time in recent memory we found ourselves wishing for more front brake performance out of our 2004 Honda CRF450R. As the manufacturer that is renown for its superb brakes, we were shocked to find that the front binder on our CRF test bike had a spongy feel at the lever and so-so stopping power. Instead of going the oversized route, however, this time we elected to try out one of the new laser-cut, stock-sized replacement Wave rotors and its matching brake pads.

For us, the enticing aspect of the standard-sized Wave rotor was the lack of an aftermarket caliper bracket, which is required when you use an oversized rotor. By maintaining the stock-sized disc and caliper bracket, it enabled us to maintain the option to switch front wheels in a flash.

Installing the Wave rotor was simple and as easy as unbolting the stock unit and replacing it with the Galfer disc. Naturally, we used thread lock on the fasteners to make sure things would stay put. When using the Wave rotor, matching it up to the Galfer pads is a requirement.

On the track, we didn't really give the front brake a healthy stab for several laps, as we needed to allow the new pads and disc to wear in. After eight or nine laps, both were adequately broken in and we were delighted with the newfound grabbing power of the new set-up. Having run huge aftermarket rotors in the past, we were surprised to find that the Galfer kit yielded similar performance, but with much better feel at the lever. There was no grabbiness whatsoever, and the performance of the Wave rotor allowed us to push harder into the corners than the stock set-up.

– Donn Maeda

Call 800/685-6633 or visit www.galferusa.com

BOOST MOBILE MOTOROLA i95cl

APPLICATION: Calling your homies and playing games

PRICE: $269

RATING: 8.5

With cell phones more common than landlines these days, I am sure you've all heard of Boost Mobile, especially with their presence in alternative sports. Boost has been a title sponsor, alongside Yamaha, of the Yamaha of Troy race team for several years now. In our eyes, the Australian—born company has two great things going for it. One is the fact that they support the sport that we're all so passionate about, motocross. And two is that they offer a great alternative to the standard “contract” cell phone plans that we all know and hate. Doesn't it always seem like your good buddy has a better cell phone plan than you do, but there's nothing you can do about it because you're locked into a two-year deal? I know I have, which is exactly what makes Boost such an attractive alternative.

We've been using our Boost Mobile Motorola i95cl for a couple months now, and it's been working great. Those pesky dropped calls have been at a minimum, and the big keypad has made operation a snap. Boost's pay-as-you-go plans are great! There are no contracts, no bills, and no hassles. Our friends at Boost offer a number of cool phones, but we're especially partial to Motorola's i95cl. It features the Boost TM Walkie-Talkie digital two-way radio, Vibracall alert, Boost Wireless Web, speakerphone, and two-way text messaging. Best of all, however, you'll find a number of pre-loaded games through the Java Apps feature on the phone. The one that's most likely to tickle the fancy of you moto dudes out there is the Suzuki Motocross Challenge. That's right…a motocross game on a phone! With all of the high-tech, state of the art games available for your home entertainment systems these days, Suzuki Moto doesn't really stack up, but hey… It's a phone for crying out loud! The fact that motocross was represented at all is a step in the right direction in my eyes.

So if you're looking for a better way to keep track of your loved ones while they're out at their favorite riding spot, or just want a phone with cooler features than your bro's, visit the Boost Mobile web site for a little help.

-Ryan Cooley

Visit www.boostmobile.com

P>ASV TK

APPLICATION: A bench for your bike

PRICE: $TK

RATING: 7

How many different stand ideas can there possibly be? We've tested stands of all shapes and sizes over the years, and with only few exceptions, the classic box—shaped stand that you have to manually lift your bike onto has remained the most functional, and therefore our favorite. There are two main reasons that stand manufacturers continue to seek new stand revelations, however. The first is to prevent you, the rider, from actually having to lift your bike to get it up on the stand. And the second is to reduce the overall size of the stand, i.e. a folding stand, so that it will fit more compactly into your truck or van when headed out for a day of riding. When choosing a stand, you've really got to ask yourself what your application's going to be. Are you looking for something that will remain in your garage, travel with you to the track, or both? Do you plan to use the stand while doing maintenance on your bike, or will it only be for storage purposes?

The ASV TK is lightweight, and is the most compact stand we've ever used, hands down! When it comes to fitting a stand in with all of the rest of your goods, the TK is by far the most practical. That, however, is where this stand stops shining. The time and effort it takes to pop the side lever out and into its ready position; place the stand on the ground so that it's lined up to meet the frame of your bike; and press your weight with enough force to actually lift your bike off of the ground, you could've lifted your bike on and off of a traditional stand three or four times. And unfortunately, that's not all… If this procedure's being done on a hard-surfaced, level ground, no worries; but if this procedure’s being done at your local track where the ground may be soft and un-level, get ready for a frustrating balancing act. Between Swap and myself, we had roughly a 35% success rate of getting the stand to support our bike's weight, and balance it, on the natural confines of our favorite local track.

So if it's light and compact that you're looking for, this stand is the cream of the crop. If it's sturdy and functional that you desire, it's probably not the best choice.

Ryan Cooley

Call 877/ASV-7000 or visit www.asvinventions.com

PRO TAPER SE HANDLEBAR

APPLICATION: Fits any stock 7/8-inch handlebar clamp; available in silver, platinum gray or black

PRICE: TK

RATING: 9

We all know it; stock handlebars suck. Save for the Honda and the KTM, who have both stepped it up recently and added oversized aluminum handlebars to their lineups, the majority of bikes come with wimpy steel cheapies that bend with the slightest tip-over.

So what are you to do when you bend yours? Well, you could go the expensive route and spring for new triple clamps with oversized bar mounts, but for riders that are a bit more budget-minded there's still a solution: The Pro Taper SE.

Pro Taper is a company with a legacy for quality, and their lato tickle the fancy of you moto dudes out there is the Suzuki Motocross Challenge. That's right…a motocross game on a phone! With all of the high-tech, state of the art games available for your home entertainment systems these days, Suzuki Moto doesn't really stack up, but hey… It's a phone for crying out loud! The fact that motocross was represented at all is a step in the right direction in my eyes.

So if you're looking for a better way to keep track of your loved ones while they're out at their favorite riding spot, or just want a phone with cooler features than your bro's, visit the Boost Mobile web site for a little help.

-Ryan Cooley

Visit www.boostmobile.com

P>ASV TK

APPLICATION: A bench for your bike

PRICE: $TK

RATING: 7

How many different stand ideas can there possibly be? We've tested stands of all shapes and sizes over the years, and with only few exceptions, the classic box—shaped stand that you have to manually lift your bike onto has remained the most functional, and therefore our favorite. There are two main reasons that stand manufacturers continue to seek new stand revelations, however. The first is to prevent you, the rider, from actually having to lift your bike to get it up on the stand. And the second is to reduce the overall size of the stand, i.e. a folding stand, so that it will fit more compactly into your truck or van when headed out for a day of riding. When choosing a stand, you've really got to ask yourself what your application's going to be. Are you looking for something that will remain in your garage, travel with you to the track, or both? Do you plan to use the stand while doing maintenance on your bike, or will it only be for storage purposes?

The ASV TK is lightweight, and is the most compact stand we've ever used, hands down! When it comes to fitting a stand in with all of the rest of your goods, the TK is by far the most practical. That, however, is where this stand stops shining. The time and effort it takes to pop the side lever out and into its ready position; place the stand on the ground so that it's lined up to meet the frame of your bike; and press your weight with enough force to actually lift your bike off of the ground, you could've lifted your bike on and off of a traditional stand three or four times. And unfortunately, that's not all… If this procedure's being done on a hard-surfaced, level ground, no worries; but if this procedure’s being done at your local track where the ground may be soft and un-level, get ready for a frustrating balancing act. Between Swap and myself, we had roughly a 35% success rate of getting the stand to support our bike's weight, and balance it, on the natural confines of our favorite local track.

So if it's light and compact that you're looking for, this stand is the cream of the crop. If it's sturdy and functional that you desire, it's probably not the best choice.

Ryan Cooley

Call 877/ASV-7000 or visit www.asvinventions.com

PRO TAPER SE HANDLEBAR

APPLICATION: Fits any stock 7/8-inch handlebar clamp; available in silver, platinum gray or black

PRICE: TK

RATING: 9

We all know it; stock handlebars suck. Save for the Honda and the KTM, who have both stepped it up recently and added oversized aluminum handlebars to their lineups, the majority of bikes come with wimpy steel cheapies that bend with the slightest tip-over.

So what are you to do when you bend yours? Well, you could go the expensive route and spring for new triple clamps with oversized bar mounts, but for riders that are a bit more budget-minded there's still a solution: The Pro Taper SE.

Pro Taper is a company with a legacy for quality, and their latest offering, the new SE model, is no exception to the rule. The SE exudes quality, and the attention to detail is amazing. Everything was thought out to a tee on this bar; a knurled clutch side keeps your grip from slipping, there are etched bar trimming mounts for riders that prefer to cut them down a bit, and the anti-slide bar pad is as beautiful as it is functional.

On the track, the SEs performed great. I can attest to the fact that they are plenty strong, too, as I took a nasty high-speed get-off in the sand whoops at Cahuilla and the bars didn't even flinch. So with such remarkable ratings thus far, why didn't the SE get a perfect ten? Well, to be honest, we still prefer the additional flex of the SE's older brother, the original oversized Pro Taper bar. Things are a bit harsher with the standard 7/8-inch model. However, for the rider without a ton of dough, the SE is a perfect option and a great buy.

-Garth Milan

Call 800/840-3040 or visit www.protaper.com< latest offering, the new SE model, is no exception to the rule. The SE exudes quality, and the attention to detail is amazing. Everything was thought out to a tee on this bar; a knurled clutch side keeps your grip from slipping, there are etched bar trimming mounts for riders that prefer to cut them down a bit, and the anti-slide bar pad is as beautiful as it is functional.

On the track, the SEs performed great. I can attest to the fact that they are plenty strong, too, as I took a nasty high-speed get-off in the sand whoops at Cahuilla and the bars didn't even flinch. So with such remarkable ratings thus far, why didn't the SE get a perfect ten? Well, to be honest, we still prefer the additional flex of the SE's older brother, the original oversized Pro Taper bar. Things are a bit harsher with the standard 7/8-inch model. However, for the rider without a ton of dough, the SE is a perfect option and a great buy.

-Garth Milan

Call 800/840-3040 or visit www.protaper.com<