KX450f Snow bike conversion Part 1

Motoshop Bend Oregon – Snow Bike Conversion – Kx450f with Camso DTS129 bike to snow kit

A customer came to us and asked us to build him a snow bike. He didn’t already have a motorcycle to use for the conversion but wanted something simple and powerful that would also be a motocrosser, desert and all around  good dirt bike.  So we took to craigslist to help him find a good candidate for his snowbike conversion. We gave him quite a few options including some KTM dual sport bikes, a Yamaha wr450 but he ultimately decided on this low hour 2016 Kawasaki kx450f.  Although the KTM’s had license plates and electric start we felt the KX was a great place to start given the price, low hours and amazing reliability of these bikes.

We also had quite a few options for the actual snowbike part of the build. At the Motoshop we carry Camso and CMX snowbikes. They are two tried and true kits with advantages to both. The Camso is produced by one of the largest snow track manufacturers in North America so they know the in and outs of making snow machines and utility tracks.  Another plus to the Camso is, at just $4800 it is easily the most affordable snowbike kit on the market. There is great support for this product here in the states.  Crazy Mountain Extreme is a $7000 kit and handmade in Montana. CMX has been building custom sleds for over 20 years and they make a truly beautiful product. The feedback we have been getting on them is amazing. Because of the belt drive system (as opposed to chain drive on most other kits) there is less drag on the drivetrain thus more power from the bike to the track. This also allows the CMX kit to be “bumpstarted” and pushed around your garage easier. Also the track itself is about 3 inches closer to the motor than the competition allowing the bike to be WHEEELIED!! The perks of the CMX are still outshined by the price and support of the Camso and ultimately this was the deciding factor for our customer when he chose a kit…the Camso won for this particular build!

You don’t just bolt a snowbike kit to a dirtbike, load up and go shred POW…it’s unfortunately not that easy.  There are quite a few things needed to make your snowbike safe and reliable.  Below is a basic list of parts you should have for your snowbike before heading out into the backcountry:

– Air Pro
– Larger pegs
– Thermobob
– Temp gauge
– Heated grips
– Headlight, taillight brake light
– Engine jacket
– Snow skid plate sks
– Pipe guard
– Handguards and snow protection
– Fork seal scrapers
– Air filter covers

(reasons why each of these products is recommended will be covered in the next installment of Building a Snowbike)

Well thats it for the Part 1 of our snowbike build.  Stay tuned for Part 2 with detailed product information, pictures and more in depth how-to of how to build a snowbike!