Ten Possible Reasons To Buy The New Dirt Rider Book

Photo by Pete Peterson

Back in September, Dirt Rider’s new book, The Total Dirt Rider Manual, hit the shelves. It’s a book designed to help anyone with any question they might have about gear, riding technique, and bike maintenance. There’s even a special section at the end that is a sort of workbook to help you dial in your bike’s suspension (this chapter is for the advanced rider).

The book is written to introduce non-riders to all aspects of the sport, so each chapter starts out with the basics but then ramps up to more advanced tips that are helpful for all riders. There are 358 tips in all, and surely you don’t know every one regardless of how much riding and wrenching experience you have.

You can purchase the book on Amazon.com at http://www.amazon.com/The-Total-Dirt-Rider-Manual/dp/1616287276.

Don’t believe it? Take this quiz (don’t look down at the answers!)


  1. For two-stroke engine fuel (that is already mixed), adding a little extra oil to the fuel makes the air/fuel mixture richer or leaner?

  2. According to Rick Johnson, when picking your motocross or supercross starting gate, what is your priority: Condition over position, or position over condition?

  3. For carbureted bikes, if you want to richen or lean out the fuel/air ratio from just opening the throttle up to about a quarter throttle, which circuit do you adjust?

  4. When first learning how to ride, how important is it to get your feet up on the pegs as soon as you're moving forward?

  5. When seat bouncing, what's the most important thing to remember to prevent the rear end from kicking up too high and throwing you front end low?

  6. Should you always wear a helmet? (we mean when riding, smarty)

  7. According to Destry Abbott, when preparing for a dead engine start, should you put the bike in gear then kill the engine by letting the clutch out, or use the kill switch with the bike in neutral and then shift the bike into gear with the engine off?

  8. For carbureted bikes, when adjusting the needle clip position, moving the clip down on the needle richens or leans out the fuel/air mixture?

  9. According to Cody Webb, how critical is rear brake control when wheelie-ing over consecutive logs?

  10. Name two national organizations working to protect your riding areas?


10 out of 10 correct: You know your stuff. You should buy this book for someone else.

9 out of 10 correct: You also know your stuff, but maybe you're just not as bright as the guy who got 10 out of 10. Buy three books for other people.

5-8 out of 10 correct: You're surely experienced, but there are some areas where you could learn a few things. Buy this book, it's fun to study up in your spare time.

2-4 out of 10 correct: Stop giving advice in online forums. Buy three copies of this book; one for your car, one for your home, and one for your workplace.

1 out of 10 correct: Go to a motorcycle dealership and discover what a motorcycle looks like. If you think they are cool, buy yourself a copy of this book and get into riding.

0 out of 10 correct: Really? #6 was a gimme! You're just not applying yourself. Yes, still buy the book, but as punishment be sure to pay full retail and ship it overnight early AM delivery.


  1. Leaner. More oil means less fuel in the same volume, so the fuel/air ratio will have more air and less fuel in it. People often run less oil to prevent fouling plugs – not only is this the wrong direction to go (this would richen the air/fuel mixture), but your oil/fuel ratio is not the place to fix a too-rich setting.

  2. RJ says 'Condition over position' since a better jump and good initial drive out of the gate is more important than a more-direct line to the first corner.

  3. The pilot jet circuit.

  4. Not important at all. In fact, it makes it easier for new riders to learn by just going a few feet at a time. This could mean paddling their feet along for ten feet or so.

  5. Stay hard on the gas all the way up the launch. This will help keep the rear suspension compressed.

  6. Yes, you should always wear a helmet when riding.

  7. Destry kills the motor with the kill switch, then shifts the transmission into gear, then rocks the bike to make sure he's in gear, and then pulls the clutch in. Some other top pros swear by other methods, but we asked you about Destry's technique!

  8. It richens it. Moving the clip down raises the needle and allows more fuel into the mixture.

  9. Not critical at all. In fact, Webb says it's not necessary. When wheelie-ing from log to log, just chopping the throttle will drop the front end as soon as the rear contacts the next log.

  10. Four acceptable answer are: AMA, BRC, NOHVCC, or ARRA. If there's another you want to draw our attention to, email us at drmail@bonniercorp.com (beware, we might publish your letter in our magazine or on our website!

The book's publisher (Bonnier Corp's Weldon Owen division) has produced a top-quality book full of helpful and valuable information. But don't take our word for it, check the reviews on Amazon.com.

This book makes a great gift for a friend who you’d like to get into riding. The sport can be a lot to take in, and much of it is intimidating when looking at it from the outside. This book could be the key to get that friend, relative, or co-worker into the sport. And you can read it before you wrap it; we’re sure you’ll learn somewhere between 1 to 358 things!