Should I stay on my 125?

Hi everyone,

My name is Derek and I need some opinions. I am 20 years old, 6 foot 3 and weigh around 185 pounds with gear on. I currently ride a 2002 YZ125 but recently I have been questioning it. I owned a KTM 125sx when I was 15-16 and I absolutely loved it but the 125 doesn't feel the same to me anymore sadly. Maybe because before when I rode one I was around 130 pounds and not so tall. I only ride on wide open trails (power lines) and in my backyard woods with some small 30-40 foot jumps. The YZ has a few upgrades to accommodate me like resprung and revalved suspension for my weight (race tech) a full fmf system, higher pro taper bars and some other small things.

What i dont like:

it struggles up hills

Lots of clutchwork in the woods and around turns

no engine braking (I loved the engine braking of my 150r when I was younger, I felt like a better rider on that little thing)

pin it or no power at all

What I do like:

Lightweight, easily maneuvered

Sound (obviously)

Smell

Ease of rebuilds

Am I too big for a 125? I will probably gain another 5-10 pounds in muscle over the next few months btw (lifting).

I think I want a four stroke. It will only be ridden from late April to late August (when I am home from college).

Should I get a 250f, 450f, or quit my bit*hing and ride the 125 harder?

Thanks in advance everyone. Any other questions I need to answer before you can give me your opinion I would be happy to answer.

The easy solution sounds like a 250 2t.

 

It would address all your issues apart from a lack of engine braking.

 

But if you want 4t:

 

You find the 125 to be not enough, a 250f will be fairly uninspiring too, you have to rev them, and they don't even wheel spin really, or pull that hard*, compared to a 2t of the same capacity, I'd go for a 450 straight up if you're looking for thrills. 

 

*Having said that, this is why they are quick.

350 enduro maybe?

Your tall for any bike, but your not really too heavy for a 125 if your 185 with gear on ---   any bike you pick will benefit from tall handlebars/clamps and a tall seat,  -- but that said, - a 125 may not be the best bike period for anyone if your riding in Pennsylvania black mud singletrack with some hills, roots and rocks thrown in

 

Lots of clutch work is the only way to ride a 125, period, so that seems normal , and they do not have much low end torque at all,  but going up a couple more teeth on the back , or dropping a tooth on the front sprocket (or both) may give you the grunt you need  --- chains and sprockets are high wear items anyway - unless yours is brand new, it may be time to think about replacements anyway

 

A 250F will give you some more torque for sure and you will not have to abuse the clutch as much, but like BushPig said, the power increase will not be a night and day difference,  but it will be an increase

 

---- or you could stay on the 2 strokers and look for a KTM or KDX 200 or even a 250

 

There's always a 450, but if you get into tight, technical stuff at all, they can tire you out  -----    Its a shame the 350 engine size hasn't caught on more with other manufacturers, but KTM makes their 350 which is a cool bike for sure in that it has big hp like a 450, but runs and handles more like a 250 (revs lot and feels light )

Thank you for all the fast replies! I forgot to mention that when I sold the KTM125 I bought a KX250 two stroke. At 130-140 pounds, it scared the shit out of me. I rode it for a summer, sold it and then didnt ride for 3 years. The light switch power is what I think scared me.

Honestly, I really want engine braking.

And yes! I am riding in the black mud of PA with lots of roots and rocks. I head over to Trevorton and Tower City occasionally if you know where those are.

I have ridden a friends KDX200. While it was extremely comfortable to cruise around on, I wouldn't want to take that thing off my 40 foot doubles and jumps are one of my favorite things!

I will look into the KTM 350! I doubt I can find one in my price range though ($4,000 and below).

I was in the same exact situation as you last year. I was 180 pounds on an 03 yz125 that was set up for a 140 pound rider. I rode 125's for 3 years then i went from 130 ish pounds to 180 pounds during last year. The yz was always bottoming out and just felt underpowered. I made the decision to get a 250 2t and it was a great decision. They feel much faster at first but you get used to the added power really quickly. You can ride it without ringing it out constantly and the suspension actually works for me lol. It's an 04 rm250 and I love it. Trust me once you go to a 250 2t you wont regret it.

Sorry didn't see your last post about the kx250 but I would suggest trying to ride someones 250 just to see if you like it as it may be easier that you weigh more now. My bike is relatively smooth but you can smooth out the power by adding a flywheel weight which will make it much less "light switch" like.

Ok I'll see if I can hop back on a 250 two stroke and see if I like it. As for a 450, does anyone think it would be too much power for me? Is the power more gradual or is it really aggressive? I was looking at a bunch of 07/08 YZ450Fs and they are catching my interest. Reading a lot about how reliable they are when taken care of correctly.

Thank you for all the fast replies! I forgot to mention that when I sold the KTM125 I bought a KX250 two stroke. At 130-140 pounds, it scared the shit out of me. I rode it for a summer, sold it and then didnt ride for 3 years. The light switch power is what I think scared me.

You're bigger and stronger now. You didn't mention the year of KX250 but the last ones they made were not user friendly. A 250 2t can be set up with a flywheel weight and some have adjustable power valves (KTM) so don't overlook the 250. Perhaps you should try someone's 05+ YZ250 first before you make a decision.

PM sent.

Get a four stroke 450.I went from a yz 125 to a crf 450r. Wisest choice I've made in a while! It's a great bike all around.

I think what I might do is save up some money, ride the 125 for another season, test ride a 250f and a 450f, then buy a brand new one. The 2014 RMZ's look gorgeous and I have seen many good reviews. I am sure any color would be a good bike though.

If your going to go with a big 4 stroke, which I highly recomend, go with kawi for real. Theyre the best when It comes to the motor, very jerkey and responsive. They have the best motors hands down, no dought in my mind. I havnt ridden anything else since ive gotten my kawis,

If your going to go with a big 4 stroke, which I highly recomend, go with kawi for real. Theyre the best when It comes to the motor, very jerkey and responsive. They have the best motors hands down, no dought in my mind. I havnt ridden anything else since ive gotten my kawis,

You sound a little bit biased towards kawis lol especially with a name kawasakikid. But yes kawis are known for their motors.

KEEP IT... I got off the 2 stroke bandwagon after my dad made me sell my rm85 when he realized it needed constant motor work and that the bottom end was going (I told him id need to do piston/rings a lot but apparently it didn't sink in till the guy at the shop told him but he exaggerated and said you need to do the piston every 10 hours or something crazy) I love my wr250f, don't get me wrong, but its not as peppy/playfull as my rm was and it's HEAVY a lot heavier than a 125... if you want to upgrade get a 250 2t or a 450f but a 250f is a lot heavier for not a lot more power (but then again it has a lot more torque but still)

The 450 is even heavier though!?

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