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Thread: Building a CX track at home...

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    Default Building a CX track at home...

    So, now that we've got the land, the time, and the motivation...

    Obviously it's a long and hefty project, but what do y'all know about building a simple track? If we went straight perimeter, we'd be looking at around 0.6mi, but adding in some zigs/zags could easily make it a mile-long course without disrupting vegetable beds, corn rows, fruit and nut arbor...etc. From top to bottom we've got about 125-150ft of elevation to make it interesting, too.

    Where do I even start? Aside from mowing (read: scything) the path and riding it until the grass/clover stays dead and I have a track, is there a simple piece of equipment one could rent to do something like that? Can I run my tiller down the entirety of the track and have something remotely rideable? I've done some volunteer work on pump-track maintenance, but never really thought about what it would take to start from scratch.

    I mean, the Yeti has to have somewhere to shred in the morning and it'd be a lot quicker than my usual perimeter walks..
    "Do you want ants? Because that's how you get ants."

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    Default Re: Building a CX track at home...

    The very nature of cx tracks is they aren't machined. The best way to maintain it permanently would be to host a local training 1 or 2 days a week in your property.

    Another option if you want to gain time and have sone fun in the process:
    Last edited by sk_tle; 1 Week Ago at 06:20 PM.
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    Default Re: Building a CX track at home...

    For a true cross course, just remove the big stuff and tape it off. That's all that promoters do when laying out a course. Some of the big stuff could be re-purposed as natural barriers if you want to get on and off your bike on your laps.

    This isn't building and maintaining a skate ski track we're talking about here.
    My real name is Hemanth and among other things, I like bikes

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    Default Re: Building a CX track at home...

    Quote Originally Posted by sk_tle View Post
    The very nature of cx tracks is they aren't machined. The best way to maintain it permanently would be to host a local training 1 or 2 days a week in your property.
    Closest town is ~15km away with a population hovering around 9,000 and, as far as I can tell, a recreational cyclist population of ~me. I'm guessing gathering a grip of folks to come train on our farm is not a valid option.

    We're also working very hard to avoid participating in the fossil-fuel economy, so a dirtbike doesn't really fit much with our ethos.

    My thought at the moment is to clear the full path of tall grasses then try to ride a few laps every day until it is something closer to permanent. But even the walking paths we've cleared for accessing various parts of the property require upkeep on top of the two of us walking them daily, usually in heavy boots, usually with a wheelbarrow. Things grow quickly, here...
    "Do you want ants? Because that's how you get ants."

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    Default Re: Building a CX track at home...

    having been to a couple backyard cross races on what are probably similar properties I would say just mow down the brush and ride it in. just give some thought to how you can fit in some fun turns without disrupting too much of the pre-existing landscaping.
     

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    Default Re: Building a CX track at home...

    Quote Originally Posted by Octave View Post

    We're also working very hard to avoid participating in the fossil-fuel economy, so a dirtbike doesn't really fit much with our ethos.
    I knew that. Hence if you look closely at the picture you won't see an exhaust system. This is an electric dirt bike from KTM. I wouldn't go as far as to say no fossil fuel is involved as energy to build it and to provide electricity has to come from another source of energy but I would still call it cleaner than any machine you could involve (while providing actual fun).
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    Default Re: Building a CX track at home...

    A random idea that just came to mind: How about designing it so it such that it can be ridden in both the CW and CCW directions?

    I assume most trails are used in only one direction to minimize traffic issues, but in your case, since you have a limited area to work with and don't want to get bored with it, and because it's going to be private, it might be worth thinking about how it will "feel" when ridden each way, in a sense doubling the length you get to ride.

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    Default Re: Building a CX track at home...

    This thread reminds me about the races I did against my uncles on their old CX bikes in my grandfather farm. I think I wasn't even in junior cat yet. I remember the hens and turkeys weren't so fond of it.

    Good memories.
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    Default Re: Building a CX track at home...

    Quote Originally Posted by zachateseverything View Post
    having been to a couple backyard cross races on what are probably similar properties I would say just mow down the brush and ride it in. just give some thought to how you can fit in some fun turns without disrupting too much of the pre-existing landscaping.
    Mission started today. Finished a morning ride, came back to the property and rode a half-lap before spinning out in some tall wet grass and falling on my ass. Mission continues tomorrow.

    Quote Originally Posted by sk_tle View Post
    I knew that. Hence if you look closely at the picture you won't see an exhaust system. This is an electric dirt bike from KTM. I wouldn't go as far as to say no fossil fuel is involved as energy to build it and to provide electricity has to come from another source of energy but I would still call it cleaner than any machine you could involve (while providing actual fun).
    Wow, thanks for pointing that out! I do bet that thing rips a heck of a lot of fun... I've ridden one motorized two-wheeled vehicle in my life (my cousin passed away and I fixed up his Honda Passport moped that had languished in the garage) and ended up with 6 broken ribs, a dislocated elbow, and two broken wrists. I'll stick to the bike with some big tires for now.

    Quote Originally Posted by sk_tle View Post
    This thread reminds me about the races I did against my uncles on their old CX bikes in my grandfather farm. I think I wasn't even in junior cat yet. I remember the hens and turkeys weren't so fond of it.

    Good memories.
    While our hens and geese tend to be very skittish around loud and abrupt noises, they are fascinated by the sound of a freewheel. So, as long as I make the coop flyby a downhill instead of uphill I think they'll be unbothered ;-)
    "Do you want ants? Because that's how you get ants."

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    Default Re: Building a CX track at home...

    Did a similar project on our property, but the end goal was single track trail to ride the mtb on.

    The key ingredient was time. I roughed out the trail, raked it and cleared the bigger stuff. Then just rode or walked it as much as possible. Took about a year for it to burn in to where it is now a trail.

    Id mow a loop then:

    Morning coffee, take a walk on the track.

    Evening beer, take a walk on the track.

    Also, always carry a saw, knife or clipper to clear the little stuff you see while you walk.
     

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