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  #1  
Old 02-05-2005, 09:27 PM
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Default Kazuma Redcat Meercat 50 Review

I recently bought a Kazuma KMX-50 from RacewayATV. I did as much research as I could before buying, I heard good and bad things about them but the price was so good I couldn't pass it up, $675 shipped. So far we've run two tanks of gas through it, the weather is cold so they can't ride very long. We've had it for about three weeks. I had several unanswered questions when I bought it, so here are my first impressions/review.

BUYING EXPERIENCE Excellent! I bought on-line on a Tuesday night, I received it the following Wednesday. All in good condition.

SIZE This is a very small quad. It's only 24.5 inches wide with a 27 nch wheelbase. Shorter and narrower than a Suzuki 50. I have three kids. 8 and 6 year old girls and a 3 1/2 year old boy. Casey is 49 inches tall, Callie is 47 and Samuel is 42 inches. They are between 40 and 50 pounds. It fits Samuel and Callie very well, Casey is only 2 inches taller but looks a little cramped, she's sitting at the back of the seat. I'll get several years before they all outgrow it, but I may be buying a larger quad for Casey within a year. If your youngest kid is 48 inches tall, buy something bigger. The thumb throttle has a long travel, longer than my other machines. It's good because the kids are learning, but it may be hard for them when I let them have the whole travel.

BUILD QUALITY I'm very impressed with the quality. Welds look good, fit and finish is fine, plastic is shiny. Overall good appearance.

PART QUALITY In some cases, you get what you pay for. The rims are painted steel. That's OK. The hubs are stamped steel rather than a casting or billet. They seem strong enough though. The tires (Far East brand) are very hard and stiff. The recommended tire pressure is 14 psi. I tried to run them at 4psi but they wouldn't stay seated on the rims. At zero pressure, they didn't squat with my kids on it. Switch gear feels "cheap" but hey, it's a kid quad. Frame is very sturdy. The rear suspension is like most other kid quads, so stiff it's useless. Also, it's a swing engine, about 1" of travel when I lean on it. For the terrain and speed they'll be riding, no suspension is fine. The headlight works very well, wide flat beam. All electrical connections are unsealed and ungreased. I suspect this is a major cause of problems with these. More on this later. The carb is from Japan, that's a good thing.

ENGINE Starts and Runs great! Lots of power when you back out the throttle screw, more than an 8 year old should have! Idle is smooth, engine doesn't vibrate or miss. Runs very smooth and quiet. I did have to change the needle clip position in the carb. It was too lean in the midrange and was bogging. I moved it one notch to center position. I followed the owners manual to set the jets and idle. It has started at 12 deg. It didn't start easy, but neither does my Rancher. I haven't changed the plug yet, but I will be, it comes with a Torch brand.

TRANSMISSION The auto clutch works very well. The shifting is very stiff. My girls can shift up (step down on the shifter) but don't have enough ankle strength to shift down (lift up on the shifter). Right now, they can start in basically any gear. So far 2nd has been the best combination of take off torque and speed. 3rd is too fast. If it doesn't loosen up, I'll have to dig into the tranny and change a spring or two. The shifter does go all the way around, so you can go from 4th to neutral to 1st. Odd.

IT"S A WHAT? Lots of different names for these. My invoice said Kazuma KMX-50, the box it came in says Redcat, the model on the box is a Meerkat 50. So, I'd say they are all the same, just different names. The VIN palte says Manufactured by Stannic Group. I've seen similar/identical quads from Jackel and a few others. Alien Motors sells one that is very similar but has hydraulic rear disk brake and different headlights and a few other differences. No Dealers for Kazuma in Central Wisconsin, so most people up here have never heard of them.

MANUALS I received three manuals with the 50. Owners manual, Chassis parts manual and Engine Parts manual. They have full exploded views and every part number listed. Very nice to have. Wish they gave those out with Ranchers and Z400's.

DRIVING IT The Kids love it. Enough said. Currently I let them have about 3/4 throttle.

WHAT I"VE DONE SO FAR I followed the recommended set-up and starting procedures, no problems. I've read a lot about loose bolts and electrical problems. After the kids had put a few hours on it, I took the plastic off and did some work. I took every electrical connection apart and filled them with silicone di-electric grease. This should prevent future problems. I also diasassembled the switch gear, greased everything and sealed the housing with RTV black as best I could. The switches have much better "feel" than they did before. I checked torque on all bolts, everything was tight.

WHAT I PLAN TO DO TO IT I'm going to widen it 4 inches. I plan to make 2" wheel spacers for the back and cut and widen the front axle. It's solid so it just a cut and paste job. I'm also going to lengthen the rear swing arm 3-4". This is bolted on so I'm just gong to make an extension bracket, similar to what's done with Blasters. This should really increase the stability but won't help the tight ergos. I may look for better tires just to give it a smoother ride. That's it. It doesn't need any more power.

RECOMMENDATION [img]i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif[/img] For a first quad for small kids, it's great! I'm very happy with it other than the stiff shifting. Every kid quad I looked at had suspension that wouldn't move with my kids on it, so the fact that this is solid front didn't matter to me. I don't like two-strokes or CVT's so this seemed like a good choice. If I'm still happy with it a year from now, I'll be buying a bigger Kazuma for my 8 year old. I wish they made a larger quad with the same engine, it has plenty of power. I'd also recommed Raceway, very quick delivery. However, if you don't have a dealer around, you'll have to do your own wrenching. If you don't know which end of a screwdriver to use, buy an electric.

Well, this got really long, I hope this helps someone out there make a decision. I'll update as I do mods or if I have any problems. [img]i/expressions/face-icon-small-wink.gif[/img]
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  #2  
Old 02-05-2005, 09:39 PM
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Default Kazuma Redcat Meercat 50 Review

Thank you for the review. It would be helpful if you could give some long term updates as well.
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  #3  
Old 05-23-2005, 10:54 AM
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Default Kazuma Redcat Meercat 50 Review

STAY AWAY FROM THE KAZUMA ATVs (REDCAT, MEERCAT, ETC.)_. CHEAP Garbage. Take it from someone who bought one 5 months ago(50cc) , and has had it in the shop on and off for the last 4.
Sincerely,
Mark[img]i/expressions/face-icon-small-disgusted.gif[/img]
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  #4  
Old 05-23-2005, 11:17 AM
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Default Kazuma Redcat Meercat 50 Review

As you see Mark alot of people are very happy with the bikes. Sorry to hear you are unhappy with yours. Raceway ATV
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  #5  
Old 05-23-2005, 03:10 PM
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Default Kazuma Redcat Meercat 50 Review

And as you can see RacewayATV, the first string in this forum by "Horedog", has not been updated since he first posted. I wonder what he would say now. So I'm not sure what you mean by, "alot of people are happy with their bikes". there's not one positive comment in this particular forum. I've read good and bad, but the most common comment is the problem with the intakes breaking............ours has broken 5 times..............no abuse, no adults riding (just to clear that myth up). I have a 49.5 lb. boy who rides it....excuse me rode it. If I had to guess how many hours he's put on it in the last 5 months, I'd say about 10, if that many. Sure these are great "learning" bikes, maybe even disposable ones. We paid $900 5 months ago, and it's not worth $10 now. I'm sure they're worth the couple hundred dollars you pay for them,when you sell them for $700 and up. I understand you're a little partial to them, I would be too if I sold them.
But let's face it, they're JUNK.
Let's list the things that have broken over the past 5 months.
1. First week.......engine heat guard left side fell off and chain tensioner bolt broke off.
2. Second week...gas tank leaked (threaded filler broke) Maybe my 5 year old over tightened.
3. 3rd week.....engine heat guard right side fell off.
4. 4th week....already hard to start, stalls consistantly..............1st manifold intake broke.
5. 5th week....brakes worn out.
6. 6th week....bad starter relay
7. 7th week....Headlamp and ignition (key) no longer working
8. 8th week....2nd manifold intake broke......
etc. etc. etc. I could go on and on.......basically no we're on the 5th intake manifold.......can't keep it running.
As you can see that what I'm mentioning here is not uncommon amongst other owners, if you'll check the other forums.
Trust me, I'd love to say that I made a great investment, and I did say that for the first few days watching my son have SOOOO much fun, but I can't. It's been more trouble than it's worth. If enough people would bitch about it maybe Kazuma/Stannic would do something to fix the problem. Hell, I'd buy another one if they would.
Sincerely,
Mark
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  #6  
Old 05-23-2005, 03:23 PM
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Default Kazuma Redcat Meercat 50 Review

Like I said sorry to hear about all the troubles you are having. But I sell about of these units and there are many many people that are very happy with them. I have had seen the tubes crack but 5 times. Never!!! Also I do not talk good about bikes if they are junk like you are claiming. We have carried other products there were junk like the 55's and a few other and stop selling them right away. I would do that with any unit that is JUNK! But again sorry to hear it but we have had great luck with them.
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  #7  
Old 05-24-2005, 06:57 PM
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Default Kazuma Redcat Meercat 50 Review

HoreDog here! I haven't updated because no-one replied and I didn't have anything to say. Here's the update. The Kazuma continues to run just fine. I have had zero problems and the kids have ridden it in mud, water and snow. My brother and I have opened up the throttle limiter and buzzed around on it doing wheelies. This little thing is tough and fun!

If you read my review, I said if you don't know which end of a screwdriver to use, buy an electric. (Poindml - You're supposed to use the end that is either flat or X shaped. ) As Raceway says on it's website "These are a good quad for the money." I stand behind my review and I still give Raceway a good recommendation.

Before I bought it I sent e-mails to ten people that bought Kazuma's off E-bay, none bought them through Raceway. I received 8 out of 9 positive responces.

There is now more than one positive comment on the forum.

Sincerely,
Jared
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  #8  
Old 06-12-2005, 04:00 PM
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Default Kazuma Redcat Meercat 50 Review

I bought 2 Kazuma 50's 3 months ago and have had great fun with them and can say that I have had no problems. My kids love them. Being new to quads I appreciate your review. After reading your review I looked at the intake manifold but didn't see any problems. When I bought the Kazuma the dealer told me that changing the oil is a pain. The dealer said the best way to change the oil is by tipping the quad on its side. This works really good and doesn't take long to change. One of the quads has a slow leak in the tire. Do you have to remove the tire to change the tube or can you do it while the wheel is on the quad. I did notice that the air filiter is a simple sponge. Should I buy a better air filter to keep the quads in good operation for the long term.
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  #9  
Old 06-19-2005, 12:27 PM
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Default Kazuma Redcat Meercat 50 Review

I bought a Meercat 50 for my 5 year old, 40 lb. son...received it on 5/31/05...he loved it! Until the intake manifold broke after 1 week. Purchased from 1trail.com. Was a mistake! I was told to JB weld it until the part was sent. I did. It lasted for 30 minutes and broke again. Still waiting on the part. I can't get them to respond to my e-mails or calls. Should have purchased from Raceway! Is there anything I can do to keep from having the problem that poindml is having? Thanks, Gary
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  #10  
Old 06-20-2005, 01:34 AM
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Default Kazuma Redcat Meercat 50 Review

Hi guys, I was on vacation this week so I haven't been home to check the forums.

I thought the airfilter looked OK. Oiled foam is the best in my opionion. If you find a thicker one that fits, let me know.

I don't think the tires have tubes. I tried airing down to 3 psi, but they wouldn't stay inflated. I have them at about 10 now. Slime or fix a flat should help. If you're going to put a tube in, I'd definetly take the wheel off. It's only three bolts.

Broken manifolds. I fortunately have not broken the intake manifold. If you take the plastic and gas tank off, you will see that the carb is very close to the frame rails. This is a swing engine, so when the rear moves, the carb moves too. I can only guess that on some of the quads, the carb is hitting the frame and breaking the manifold. I saw one post where the guy took a new manifold, cut it in half, and spliced it together with a hose and two clamps. This sounds like a good idea. It would give the carb some flex if it is hitting something. I haven't seen the need to do it, so mine is stock. If you do cut one in half, I'd remove about 1/2" out of the middle to give the bubber a place to bend.

I hope this helps you out.
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Old 06-20-2005, 01:34 AM
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50, 50cc, break, broken, cracked, cutting, driving, extension, forums, intake, kazuma, manifold, meerkat, problems, redcat, starting



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