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Adventure Riding Adventure riding, dual sports, and dirt bikes

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  • 1 Post By Squidly
  • 1 Post By Hachi
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Jun 9th 2016, 02:41 PM   #1
 Squidly's Avatar
  Jan 2016

Fire in tall grass?

Hey dirtbikers. What would you guess the chances are of your bike starting a fire in tall grass?

It doesn't seem too likely to me, but I can see how it would be possible during a dry week, especially if I parked the bike. Opinions?
Jun 9th 2016, 04:11 PM   #2
  May 2016
  Port Orchard, WA

  R1200RT, DR650
I've never heard of a hot bike starting a fire in grass just by being parked in it or even ridden through normally. However, the forest service does require spark arrestors in exhaust for you to trail ride legally.

I can't imagine it being a common thing (maybe on poorly-tuned two stroke bikes?) but I did find this from an old post on Thumpertalk by Twoblackbelts:

Carbon buildup on an exhaust valve or a piece of the head or valve, or carbon near the head can retain enough heat and mass in a red-hot engine to make it out of the pipe and onto the ground. The spark arrestor screen slows it down and allows it to cool to non-combustible temps, and disintegrate or fall back into the packing during deceleration or engine stoppage.
Jun 9th 2016, 04:52 PM   #3
 Squidly's Avatar
  Jan 2016

Huh, I always wondered where those mystery sparks came from. Thanks for the info

I still have the factory exhaust so I'm not worried about arresting sparks. I was actually concerned about a hot header starting a fire if I left the bike in a field of tinder.
Jun 9th 2016, 08:35 PM   #4
 cool1442's Avatar
  Mar 2016
  North of CDA

  KTM 950 Super Enduro, Honda XR 650R
Bad idea as YOU will get the blame for the fire~
Jun 10th 2016, 05:37 AM   #5
 GPD323's Avatar
  Jan 2016

I had a my car start a small fire in tall grass once during a track day. It was a 1973 Mazda RX3 and granted the headers on a rotary get very hot. I can see this as a possibility so I now carry a small fire extinguisher with me at all times on a bike.

I had started a thread a while back asking about carrying one.

If your bike went off road in a crash and landed in tall dry grass, I see this as a possibility.

Edited by GPD323 on Jun 10th 2016 at 06:34 AM
Jun 10th 2016, 08:49 AM   #6
 riceman's Avatar
  Jan 2016
  Pasco, WA

  nothing anymore =(
My 1150 GS came factory with a catalytic converter on the underside. I've heard tales of the cats on these bikes getting hot enough to start a fire after shutting the bike down. I've never seen this in person though.
Jun 10th 2016, 10:08 AM   #7
 Cougar's Avatar
  Jan 2016

  Yamaha FZ1, KTM Super Duke GT, Yamaha FJR, Yamaha XS650
A friend of mine parked his Porsche 928 in some tall weeds and the catalytic converter started a fire that completely burned his car. It can happen...
Jun 10th 2016, 12:18 PM   #8
 Scribbles's Avatar
  Jan 2016

It's possible, but doesnt happen often.

Jun 10th 2016, 01:25 PM   #9
 SmokeyMcNug's Avatar
  May 2016
  Olympia, WA

  1996 Kat 600 "Ras-tana"
well that escalated quickly....

they should have gone a foot or two out and dug out a wide line with their heels.
Jun 10th 2016, 02:01 PM   #10
 MMcN49's Avatar
  Jan 2016
  Small Island Surrounded by Puget Sound

  07 Buell XB12STT, (Two) 12 Suzuki DR650 SE 72BMWR75/5 KIA @ 243K
In about 30 seconds of idling while standing still, a DR650 header glows cherry red in the dark. Stop in tall dead grass and you could start a fire. I wrapped my high flow header in exhaust tape. Before wrapping I sprayed the header with high temp exhaust paint.

If your muffler doesn't say USFS approved spark arrester it isn't. It is a legal requirement for going off road at all. The one below is pretty universal. I've got one in my Busa can.

Jun 10th 2016, 03:55 PM   #11
 Squidly's Avatar
  Jan 2016

Wow that didn't take long to flame up at all ��

Thanks for the input everyone. I might just start carrying an extinguisher when it's dry.
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Jun 10th 2016, 06:32 PM   #12
 SmokeyMcNug's Avatar
  May 2016
  Olympia, WA

  1996 Kat 600 "Ras-tana"
i keep one in my wifes bmw, along with other various emergency kit things and flares. i have had to use an extinguisher i keep in a car before and flares plenty of times for accidents i come upon. i spend A LOT of time on the road. i should keep one withthe bike but i have no place to keep one.and im too cheap right now lol
Jun 13th 2016, 10:59 PM   #13
  Jun 2016
  Portland area

Not a fire extinguisher, you need a folding trench shovel.

Sent via SCH-I545
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