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Discussion Starter #1
To you quad gurus, I'd like your opinion. Generally speaking, which would you consider safer for kids, a dirtbike or a 4-wheeler?

Thanks,

Pete
 

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Overall, the quad is a bit safer. The kids' quads these days are pretty well built, and have some decent suspension. The baby Predator we got has double the suspension travel of the others and is quite stable (it can still wheelie with a grown 'man' on it, though heehee).
We initially got an XR70 for our daughter (my step-daughter). She was having a bit of a hard time with it, and was getting discouraged everytime she fell over and got a bump (girls these days :rolleyes: ). Her biological father suggested we trade it for the quad, and he'd pay half the difference, so we did. She is much happier with it and while there is still the chance of injury, she has yet to experience the joy of falling from one's quad.

My personal take is kinda torn. If a kid starts out learning to balance on a bike, they can have a lot more fun as they grow with it. But, it also comes with a lot more broken bones.
With a four wheeler they can still get out and have fun with the family with less overall risk. Sure, you can have the freak accident where they flip the machine over and it lands on them, but the chances of injury on the four wheeler are much lower than with the bike.

Just my observation.
 

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I'd have to go with the dirt bike also. They'll crash more often on the dirt bike but when they do crash the quad there is a good chance of it being worse than the dirt bike. Of course this is going from memory when I was a kid. Never had an a$$whoopin' as bad from a dirt bike as I did a quad, of course I ate dirt more frequently on the bike.
 

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I think a dirtbike is safer overall. Since it will fall over on its’ own, the rider has to learn the basics before he gets too cocky and tries something over his/her head. On a quad, any goon can just jump on and pin it since it balances itself. Also, like someone said, when you crash a quad they always seem to hunt you down and run over you.

I have both and love both, but in my opinion, if a person learns to ride a bike first, they end up being a better quad rider.
 

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I agree that learning on a dirt bike is better for the kid in the long run, but I'm going from experience with the last few months in that the kid quads these days are much safer, and our daughter enjoys it much more. There is a throttle limiter that can be adjusted as the kid gains experience, as well as a jumper in the ignition box that will keep it under five miles an hour until you're ready to pull it off. I have crashed quads numerous times and have been hit by one once, just having it roll over my leg - which did nothing. Yes bikes fall right over, but the kid hits the ground along with it.
The real question is whether you want the kid to be comfortable on a dirt bike later down the road. If so, go ahead and take all the bumps and breaks now so they can be better with a bike later.
If you just want something that the kids can enjoy with you and have a fun safe time on, get the quad.
I know my opinion is in the minority, but like I said, we just went through this first hand this past spring/summer.
I may be wrong, but our experience showed the quad to be a better choice.
:idunno:
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks for the input guys. I was having a discussion with a neighbor who is strictly "anti-motorcycles" for his kids, yet lets them tool around on their grandfather's quad. These points all solidified my argument that to think a quad is *that* much safer than a dirtbike is a bit naive. Regardless, his stance on motorcycles is based on the kind of crap that makes you just want to bitch-slap him right from the start.
 

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We had 3 and 4 wheelers around when I was a kid, and a huge problem with them is the difficulty in getting one to steer at speed. My brother ran into the front of a truck (stationary thank goodness) because he wasn't strong enough to turn. This wouldn't have happened on a bike. Also like others have said, bikes are self limiting to some degree.

And when you crash, a friggin quad always hits you. And they are heavy. Pissed blood (3 wheeler footpeg to kidney) and have the scars on my back to prove it. Not much of a quad fan here...but I'll ride them if there aren't any bikes about!
 

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too many people ride 4wheelers with no gear.
 

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Three wheelers suck. Very unsafe machines. Anything ridden without gear will be unsafe, bike or quad.
I'll just clarify by stating that the current crop of new kid quads are very safe machines. Nothing at all like they were even a few years back. That said, Honda's current kid quad is a pile, essentially the same thing they have been offering for years, and isn't as safe as the newly engineered ones.
Again, this is coming from very recent experience. Our daughter had a very rough time on the bike - including spraining her ankle. She has yet to have an issue with the quad.
Big-boy quads do have the tendency to run you over if you don't fall just right (although I don't seem to have any problem with getting run over), they also can poke you with the pegs.
The kiddie ones don't.

Do I wish our daughter would have taken to the bike better? Yeah, a little. Bikes have the potential to be much more fun (and much more dangerous) than quads in the long run, but she is certainly more happy with her little Predator.

As a side note - who will win the Supercross title this year, now that Ricky just made it easy for everyone else?
 

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A dirtbike would be more fun. Besides, I heard to many horror stories about people on quads breaking their spine or neck.
 

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I like riding 3 wheelers better...something about a quad just doesn't do it for me. Maybe cuz it has 2 more wheels than a motorcycle rather than 1 more. :idunno:
 

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BDA116 said:
As a side note - who will win the Supercross title this year, now that Ricky just made it easy for everyone else?
Uh, sorry for yet another semi thread jack, but what happened to Ricky? Haven't watched any racing on TV for awhile.
 

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Testing/training crash, torn ACL. He'll be out for quite a while - in fact, he'll be lucky to make the Motocross season.
 

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? They can usually get you back in 3 months tops from an ACL if they need to.
 

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luvtolean said:
? They can usually get you back in 3 months tops from an ACL if they need to.
A high priced doc like RC has can probably do that - but when I tore mine it took a good six months before I could even walk very well, and a year before I raced again.

A torn ACL SUCKS!!!
 

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I like being the guy that doesn't agree with everyone else... quads rock!

Seriously though, safety depends on how the thing is ridden and if gear is worn. I don't know that a bike is any more or less dangerous than a quad. I rode dirtbikes occasionally but never owned one. I started out on 3-wheelers and moved to quads as they became better built. I haven't had any more serious injuries than the average dirtbike rider. Collarbones seem to go with both types of rides. Other than that, I would say a dirtbike is definitely going to be harder on the knees since you stick your leg out and have a good chance of hyper extending it if you crash badly. While you can always have a quad land on you and break something, if you are wearing the appropriate gear then it should only be arms and legs that get crunched.

Speaking of quads hunting you down, you guys must have a bad technique or something. I can only think of one time when the quad ran over me after a crash and that one was bad enough to break my leg. I quickly learned figured out, however, when I was past the point of saving the thing when hillclimbing and would step off to the side of the thing before it went tumbling down the hill. Usually I was standing at the top watching the quad roll all the way to the bottom.

I have seen a few people get planted in the ground on a quad though when they failed to jump off. It was pretty funny (especially since one of the people was making fun of my hillclimb when he got planted).

The big thing is gear, gear, gear. Always wear your gear like you are going to crash. Also, if the quad is for a kid then be aware of the size and don't buy something that the kid can't handle due to weight.
 

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luvtolean said:
? They can usually get you back in 3 months tops from an ACL if they need to.
The first reports I read about it made it seem worse than it is. I just read a new one saying he'll be down for 4 months. Looks like he will make the outdoor season.
Also new news - Chad Reed dislocated his shoulder a couple days ago, and pretty bad I guess (although this can very easily change). He will miss the first race or two of the SuperCross season.
Kevin Windham anyone?
 
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