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DS converted CRF450X

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I have the money and am in the market for a new bike. I recently stumbled upon this gem

http://dallas.craigslist.org/ndf/mcy/4027876247.html

 

I have ridden alot of dual sports, and also have a dedicated trail bike. I have seen many WR and CRF conversions done but I am curious to know from those that have done it themselves or know of others who have.

 

Am I going to be checking valves and shimming every 50 hours? I mean if I do the 16 mile round trip to work every day, then hit the trails on the weekend, am I going to be spending the rest of the weekend checking valves? I am mechanically inclined, but have never had to do it on my DR or DRZ. Would be a worthwhile replacement for both bikes, or should I just stick with 2 bikes?

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Checking valves literally takes half an hour start to finish, shimming them takes about an hour. 

 

If it's had stainless steel valves put in it will run forever and the valves shouldn't move a bit.

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Don't know about the valve stuff but, I can tell you the bike is worlds different than the DRZ. I rode a buddies very modded one last week, it was fast and handled well but it was not even close on performance. I say do it!

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First, let me say that I own both a CRF250x and a CRF450x.  I love them both, but neither are what I would consider a "Dual Sport".

 

If I had to scale them from 1 to 10, 1 being nothing but a road bike and 10 being a dirt/racing bike, they would land at about 8.5 - 9.

 

They are designed for performance and racing.  Longevity, reliability, ease of maintenance were not the main goals.  They are nothing more then de-tuned R's with electric start, a head light, and a tail light, and a kick stand.   They don't come with a warrenty from Honda, are labled as "off road use only", etc.

 

To me, a true dual sport is something in the mid-range of the scale.  Something like your DRZ  (4 on the scale) or the Honda CRF230L (6 on the scale):

 

http://www.motorcycle.com/specs/honda/on-off-road/2009/crf-reg/230l.html

 

It's pretty darn good in the dirt and is not too bad on the road either.

 

Comes with a warrenty and everything already required to be registered for the road.   Motor doesn't have the same performance, but then doesn't carry the same maintenance requirements either.

 

It at times is a tough call to make, but if your more on the "ease" side of everything; registering, maintenance, overall expense, etc, then a CRFx is not a good fit.

 

I probably spend 10-15 hours on each of my bikes wrenching each season at a minimum.  They do require constant care and maintenance.

 

Also depending on where you live, it can be down right difficult or impossible to get them registered for the road.

 

Others my disagree, but if your looking to run down the road with any kind of frequency or really want a bike that is just easy, I would not be looking at a CRFx.

 

Jim.

Edited by JimDettman

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Personally, I'd stick with two bikes. I wouldn't want to ride my 450X every day to work. Your DR is a better street bike, but the CRF is also a WAY better bike than the DRZ in the dirt. Huge difference between the DRZ and CRF-X, huge. They aren't even in the same class. The CRF is also a higher maintenance bike than either the DR or DRZ though, as it's a performance machine. You can put a lot of miles on the DR while doing very little work. I had both a DRZ and my CRF, and the DRZ is the one that ended up getting sold. If it was me, I'd keep the DR for the street and longer rides, sell the DRZ, and buy the CRF-X.

Edited by yellowdatsun

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I have a CRF450X for sale, I am in NM. If you are interested in arranging the sale private message me and we can talk on the phone.

The bike is great, I have developed arthritis in my hands and can no longer ride, it has been sitting for 3 years (properly stored, no gas

carb cleaned out, so on).

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Personally, I'd stick with two bikes. I wouldn't want to ride my 450X every day to work. Your DR is a better street bike, but the CRF is also a WAY better bike than the DRZ in the dirt. Huge difference between the DRZ and DRF-X, huge. They aren't even in the same class. The CRF is also a higher maintenance bike than either the DR or DRZ though, as it's a performance machine. You can put a lot of miles on the DR while doing very little work. I had both a DRZ and my CRF, and the DRZ is the one that ended up getting sold. If it was me, I'd keep the DR for the street and longer rides, sell the DRZ, and buy the CRF-X.

The DR is sold unfortunately. I loved it but stuff happens. Now my DRZ250 is no longer working. Don't ask, its a horrible story. I have the money to get it fixed up but it would probably be more than the bike is worth. That is why I am wanting a one bike to rule them all. I know technically there is no such thing, but for just getting to work and then putting it in the truck to get to the trails in OKC or Lake Ellsworth I think it could work. I realize I would need Stainless Steel valves and oil changes would be more frequent than on my previous 2 bikes. Other option is a WR400 or 450 of which I see quite a few running around. 

 

If I was to just get a DRZ400 I would end up dumping alot of money into it to get the kind of performance I would get from a CRFX but it still wouldn't be the same in the dirt, but better on the road. I am torn. 

 

I see 3 CRF450X's within 2 hours of me for sale, the one linked above is the least expensive and at face value looks well taken care of. IDK. 

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The DR I had was a DRZ400. Worst bike I ever had, and I've had a lot. It's REALLY heavy, has outdated suspension (actually everything is outdated), and I never could get that piece of crap to run right. I would do the 450X over a DRZ400 in a heartbeat. Even if the DRZ was free, it's worth spending the money on the 450X. You could dump a pile of money into the DRZ and it will never be as good as a 450x is stock. So yeh, maybe you should buy the CRF450X. I would ride the one you posted above, looks fine. Even if it isn't perfect, the X is worth dumping some money into.

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A CRF 450x can be made into a Great! DualSport... I've done several... The main thing that needs to be addressed is the gearing. What I have done is purchase a second set of wheels/tires make one set for offroad and the other set for DS and there you have it! And when the valves need to be done just have them done by a reputable shop and stainless... Done. And for the gearing, what I use is 13/48 for the Dirt and 14/48 for dualsport or if i'm doing a lot of roads/freeway then I put on a 15/48 and that's it. The bike is awesome for any of this and yes you can do 200/300 mile days :thumbsup:

 

Here's my last one that I just built up.

http://www.thumpertalk.com/topic/1033539-brand-new-2012-time-to-mod/

:ride:

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A CRF 450x can be made into a Great! DualSport... I've done several... The main thing that needs to be addressed is the gearing. What I have done is purchase a second set of wheels/tires make one set for offroad and the other set for DS and there you have it! And when the valves need to be done just have them done by a reputable shop and stainless... Done. And for the gearing, what I use is 13/48 for the Dirt and 14/48 for dualsport or if i'm doing a lot of roads/freeway then I put on a 15/48 and that's it. The bike is awesome for any of this and yes you can do 200/300 mile days :thumbsup:

 

Here's my last one that I just built up.

http://www.thumpertalk.com/topic/1033539-brand-new-2012-time-to-mod/

:ride:

 

Thanks. I already knew I would need to adjust the gearing and keep 2or3 sets of counter sprockets around. Based on more research I also learned that Steel valves were the way to go. I don't mind putting that money into it initially as long the bike does not become a utter time and money sink. My DR350 was amazing, but it started burning oil and I just decided it was time to upgrade. Im not even talking long trips. Just work and back, then put in the truck for the weekend trail rides. Even then I usually only ride 4 to 5 hours with short breaks in between loops. I think the CRF450X will be awesome. Now my problem is deciding between it and the less expensive W426(450 top end) that I found nearby. I think both require the same things like steel valves and oil changes more frequently but I am ok with that as long as they don't fall apart on me on the way to work one day. 

 

Thanks for all the awesome feedback everyone. I welcome more as I wait till next weekend to make my decision and purchase the bike.

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I've had a WR450 as well and IMO the X would make a better DS... Power band is wider allowing for both short and long-shifting.  The 14/48 gearing is still short for hwy (60 MPH or >) travel, but I don't like to ride at high RPMs.  30 mi/day is no problem at all...  Jump on it !

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Just tossing this out there while the conversation is on gearing. I'm currently running 14-44 and the bike has plenty of power for street/moto use. Friend on a 07x just went to a track (asphalt) with a 14-39 and he is reporting bike was awesome passing litre bikes. Almost dirt season for us so back to dirt and 13-51 gearing.

Edited by StonedInNy

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Just tossing this out there while the conversation is on gearing. I'm currently running 14-44 and the bike has plenty of power for street/moto use. Friend on a 07x just went to a track (asphalt) with a 14-39 and he is reporting bike was awesome passing litre bikes. Almost dirt season for us so back to dirt and 13-51 gearing.

I have found that running a 15/41 is the hot ticket for asphalt...the extra height of the 15t countershaft sprocket keeps the chain up higher which helps the chain slider life and doesn't chew on it nearly as bad. You will have to do a little clearancing of the case saver, but it is very minimal.

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for just getting to work and then putting it in the truck to get to the trails in OKC or Lake Ellsworth I think it could work.

Are u military? Not really pertinent to th thread but I just noticed your originally from WA. If your OKC area, I could possibly arrange a quick test ride on my DS X if your still on the fence. My suspension settings are probably way out of whack for anyone but a mutant KoolAid man on steroids, but would give u an idea how they run

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Wish I had seen that earlier. 3 days ago I bought a drz400e converted. Still would like a test ride though lol. I'm in the Lawton FT. Sill area but have ridden at crosstimbers on my 250.

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