Are four strokes too risky to buy used?

Hi my friend has just posted a thread on here about a crf 250r and a yz 250f and which he should get an I'm actually in the same situation as him. But I just wanted to know is it super risky to buy these used four strokes that are from 06-08 are these ticking time bombs? And we both are going to be using them for our tracks and ride on trails. We also want to get started racing at our local tracks and race in our county fair against each other. Thanks

It will always be a risk when buying used, a buddy of mine picked up a 04 crf250 that was supposedly in great condition , 10 engine hours later it needed new top end and valves. 

 

Is this your first dirtbike? If going used I would suggest getting a 2 stroke as it will be easier to maintain.

 

Best of luck.

I paid 1250 for my 2007 yz250f and after cleaning the carb, replaceing minor parts and fresh oil it runs great.  I'm not sure how long it's going to run great though since i have no clue how the last owner treated it, but I think he was scared of it.  I ran it hard on saturday and it held together!  If you can find one for a good price and look it over well for problems, talk them down a little and pick it up.  Buying anything used is a gamble though. :ride:

Might just consider a 2 stroke. No crazy expensive work needed here. Not to mention how easy the work itself is. Buy a used 2t, put a new $120 top end in it and you're set. Just my $.02

If you can't afford to fix it when it breaks, it's too risky to own in general. There's no reason to own a 4 stroke if you can't afford repairs and that's just stupid. I have a 4 stroke, it's very well maintained and if something goes wrong I have the coin to fix it but often you see 250f's kids own on kijiji blown up because they thought a 250f was just that much better then a 125. Now they have no bike. So if you're that concerned with it, then yeah it's too risky. If you have the means to repair it, go look it over, make sure it's a good bike but just know that even then you can never really be 100% sure what that motor holds in store for you in the future. 

 

06-08 is old in 4 strokes. Chances are a motor job in one would be worth more then the bike itself. If you're not ready to pay that then get a 2 stroke. I hate to see people get into these old 4 strokes because they want a 250f/450 and the see ones on their price range only to realize later they can't afford to run them. Food for thought, a 06 250f is worth 2000 max and a motor job in one will run you between $2000-3000 depending on what happens and who fixes it. Not just that but they need valve adjustments frequently, pistons every 30-40 hours, timing chains and a host of other things as well. They're not cheap to run and if you can't afford a newer one you probably can't afford to maintain one or fix one when something goes wrong. 

Edited by leafsrule16

If you can't afford to fix it when it breaks, it's too risky to own in general. There's no reason to own a 4 stroke if you can't afford repairs and that's just stupid. I have a 4 stroke, it's very well maintained and if something goes wrong I have the coin to fix it but often you see 250f's kids own on kijiji blown up because they thought a 250f was just that much better then a 125. Now they have no bike. So if you're that concerned with it, then yeah it's too risky. If you have the means to repair it, go look it over, make sure it's a good bike but just know that even then you can never really be 100% sure what that motor holds in store for you in the future. 

 

06-08 is old in 4 strokes. Chances are a motor job in one would be worth more then the bike itself. If you're not ready to pay that then get a 2 stroke. I hate to see people get into these old 4 strokes because they want a 250f/450 and the see ones on their price range only to realize later they can't afford to run them. Food for thought, a 06 250f is worth 2000 max and a motor job in one will run you between $2000-3000 depending on what happens and who fixes it. Not just that but they need valve adjustments frequently, pistons every 30-40 hours, timing chains and a host of other things as well. They're not cheap to run and if you can't afford a newer one you probably can't afford to maintain one or fix one when something goes wrong. 

 

This guys got it right. I started with a 125 but wanted to see what all the 4 stroke rage was about. I bought an 03 yz250f off my buddy and its a good bike, but I have no idea what condition the motors in and I'm not going to find out the hard way like I did with my supermoto. Before its blown up on me, I've realized I don't have the money to rebuild it to actually consider it rideable. Sucks because its a nice bike, easy to ride, best suspension setup i've ever experienced, but I'm putting it up for sale. Two strokes are just a lot cheaper to own, and I can rebuild the whole thing myself.

Edited by dan2581

If you know what to look for (stock/low hours) then you should be fine as long as its not too old.

I paid 1250 for my 2007 yz250f and after cleaning the carb, replaceing minor parts and fresh oil it runs great.  I'm not sure how long it's going to run great though since i have no clue how the last owner treated it, but I think he was scared of it.  I ran it hard on saturday and it held together!  If you can find one for a good price and look it over well for problems, talk them down a little and pick it up.  Buying anything used is a gamble though. :ride:

You picked the right bike to take the gamble on

If you are a great mechanic, used is a good way to go. If you are'nt, then by new. Despite what alot of people say, if a two stroke gernades and needs a crank, it is beyond your average guys skill to fix. Of course a top end is easy, but if it needs a new cylinder, its still expensive. On a 4 stroke I'd say you'd want 06 or newer, but thats no guarantee its a good bike. Two stroke year isnt as important. In both cases its condition. Their are some nice barely ridden bikes out there, but you've got to look long and hard. I just got burned on an 09 kx85. The guy claimed new top end and it seized first ride. He had lined the cylinder instead if new. Doing all the work myself it cost a grand.

This is another 4v2 thread in sheeps clothing

time bombs,  they should all be parted out on ebay so the rest of us can keep riding them cheap

No risk with an XR. :ride: 

 

Like others said...if you are good at working on bikes or want to learn, then used is the way to go with those things. Buuuuuut....you might get lucky! 

I agree with Leafsrule, if the cost of fixing is more than the value of the bike it's not worth it. I wanted to try the four strokes out last year. I picked up a clean stock 04 YZ250f for 1800 bucks. The bike was nice, ran well and the valves checked out. Every time I rode it I would think about WHEN I would have to rebuild, not if. I realized that a rebuild was close to the value of the bike. I couldn't see myself dumping 1000 to 1500 bucks into a bike I paid 1800 for just to get it running. Seemed like the moment I blew it up I would have an expensive boat anchor. I sold (traded actually) the bike immediately and went back to a 2 stroke. With that said as far as I know the bike is still running well. The guy that bought it was a trail rider only.

For the average cost of a rebuild on a 4t engine you could buy another 125 or 250 2 stroke. A 2 stroke full rebuild is around 500-700, that would include a new crank, top end, cylinder, much less expensive and very simple in comparison. For the extra few hundred the suspension could be rebuilt as well, so for the same or less than an engine rebuild you could literally make a 2 stroke nearly brand new, top to bottom.

4 strokes are great, don't get me wrong, they're fast, easy to ride and almost necessary for the average rider to be competitive in racing. The consequence is the expense and maintenance necessary to keep them in top form. My 2 stroke gets a clean air filter every ride, fresh premix and gear oil every 5 hours or so. I do top ends every winter and other wear items, simple in comparison in my opinion.

The 4 strokes you mentioned are racing machines and no other 4 stroke requires the maintenance and needs to be rebuilt as much as a 250f. Like mentioned above the XR is nearly bullet proof but a trail bike, wouldn't be too good on the mx track. A 450 4t is much less maintenance, but it's a LOT of power. Buying a used 250 4t can be risky, if you can work it out with the seller try to get the bike looked at by a mechanic first. That's what I did. The seller was ok with me taking the bike to my mechanic to check the valves and give it a good once over for me. I knew (know) a little about 4t's, but not how to inspect valves etc. It cost me a hundred bucks, but I knew the valves were good, and the general condition of the engine before I bought it. After the inspection his response was either it didn't get ridden much, or the previous owner took excellent care of it. Helped me to sleep better knowing that, but I just couldn't stop obsessing over blowing it up.....I confirmed for myself that I'm a 2 stroke guy.....Good luck!

My dad is a good mechanic you could give him the parts and he could put it together. He works on tractors bulldozers dirtbikes four wheelers the list goes on and on. Believe me my dad is one of the smartest people you would ever meet he has a successful home building business by trade and then he works on our farm when he's not at work but most of the time he actually is fixing stuff of my brothers and mine. And he's really good at putting stuff together and he is good at making things ( contraptions not so much real parts because we don't have the tools to mold things.) but he can make so many things out of broken or things I would have never thought to use on things but he does and they work. My dad actually ( I can't believe) prefers to work on fourstroke engines more than two strokes that's just what he has been taught on or something. So do you guys think 4 stroke used would be okay then since what I have told you

i got my 04 crf250 from a buddy and his local shop told him it needed a new topend  and bottom end rebuild.  i checked it all out and i havent done anything to it. starts first kick and doesnt make any strange noises.  you just have to check the things out before you buy them.  i always ask the seller to keep the bike cold so i can hear it start up cold and hear it while it warms up,  and have the seller ride the bike a little and listen to it.  if you just check the bike out really good and you should be able to get a good bike

you could give him the parts and he could put it together.

Okay, so instead of a $3000 motor job your still going to pay 1500 in parts to rebuild it. Still not worth it, just get a 2 stroke. 4 strokes are for people who can afford them and if you have to stretch your budget and get an old 4 stroke then no, you can't afford them. 4 strokes are worthless after a few years, what's the point of buying a bike that is a year or two away from being a parts bike or needing $1500 in parts to get running again when you can have years of good fun on a 2 stroke with only pistons and rings every summer?

 

But yeah, if you have to buy an old peice of junk 4 stroke you can't afford to maintain one. That's the cycle you get in, it's okay for guys who want a low start up cost and are willing to bite the bullet when it comes back around but even that is stupid. Then you dumped a ton of money into an outdated worthless bike. 5 years even is a lot for 4 strokes, they have came a long way from the hard starting, valve eating, overheating-in-the-woods bikes that they used to be. They still are going to need valve adjustments very frequently and pistons and rings at 2-stroke intervals but seriously man, you don't need a 4 stroke. It's a different story if you were buying new or near new and planning on selling in a few years but these are old bikes we're talking about. In 4 stroke terms, that's at the end of it's service life before it's toast. Not just that but you could have a flawless 125 or 250 2t in the price range these things go for that would be running for years later.

Edited by leafsrule16

Okay, so instead of a $3000 motor job your still going to pay 1500 in parts to rebuild it. Still not worth it, just get a 2 stroke. 4 strokes are for people who can afford them and if you have to stretch your budget and get an old 4 stroke then no, you can't afford them. 4 strokes are worthless after a few years, what's the point of buying a bike that is a year or two away from being a parts bike or needing $1500 in parts to get running again when you can have years of good fun on a 2 stroke with only pistons and rings every summer?

But yeah, if you have to buy an old peice of junk 4 stroke you can't afford to maintain one. That's the cycle you get in, it's okay for guys who want a low start up cost and are willing to bite the bullet when it comes back around but even that is stupid. Then you dumped a ton of money into an outdated worthless bike. 5 years even is a lot for 4 strokes, they have came a long way from the hard starting, valve eating, overheating-in-the-woods bikes that they used to be. They still are going to need valve adjustments very frequently and pistons and rings at 2-stroke intervals but seriously man, you don't need a 4 stroke. It's a different story if you were buying new or near new and planning on selling in a few years but these are old bikes we're talking about. In 4 stroke terms, that's at the end of it's service life before it's toast. Not just that but you could have a flawless 125 or 250 2t in the price range these things go for that would be running for years later.

What the fu#$ are you smoking dude?! Do you realize that everything you just said is way wrong

What the fu#$ are you smoking dude?! Do you realize that everything you just said is way wrong

If you think it's smart to buy a $2000 bike that will eventully need that in repairs, please buy one and go away. Now, please explain to me what's "way wrong" in my statements so I can proceed to shoot you down. What's a cylinder cost? A head? A piston, rings, crank, timing chain, countless valve adjustments, rebuilds and repairs? Are you telling me that it totally makes sense to buy an old 4 stroke and keep it up when a 2 stroke can be had and ran for much cheaper?

Edited by leafsrule16

If you think it's smart to buy a $2000 bike that will eventully need that in repairs, please buy one and go away. Now, please explain to me what's "way wrong" in my statements so I can proceed to shoot you down. What's a cylinder cost? A head? A piston, rings, crank, timing chain, countless valve adjustments, rebuilds and repairs? Are you telling me that it totally makes sense to buy an old 4 stroke and keep it up when a 2 stroke can be had and ran for much cheaper?

already have. and your wrong in saying that in a few years the bike is beat and needs thousands of dollars of work.   thats not how it works

already have. and your wrong in saying that in a few years the bike is beat and needs thousands of dollars of work.   thats not how it works

 

Yeah, I am. What I should have said is most of the time the previous owner did that for you. 4 years isn't long in 4 stroke terms, 8? Yeah, that bike's a ticking time bomb unless it's never been rode. Face it, high performance 4 stroke engines are disposable. So, if you can't afford to keep up with them it doesn't ever really make sense to own them, especially when your not a professional racer and you don't need the traction advantages or smoothness of power that a 4 stroke provides when a used 2 stroke is more then enough. Also, when I decide my bike's too old and worn on ill inbox you if you want and you can gladly take it off my hands. 

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