Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  

Just picked up a like new 2009 150

Recommended Posts

Hello all, new to this section but not to riding.  I found a peach of a deal a couple weeks ago on a 2009 crf150f that was ridden maybe twice and now I'm in the process of doing all the required, and not so necessary, upgrades.  Suspension was first, fork springs and 15 weight oil.  I'm not sure what route I will take with the rear shock.  Either Hagon, Works, or Fox, just depends on what the best deal is that I can get.  Found a good condition 230 swingarm on ebay to add a little length to the wheelbase and hopefully a little stability.  BBR linkage also on the way and hopefully a BBR fork triple clamp in a couple weeks.  Still on the hunt for some lower offset footpegs.  Probably Gold valves down the road for the front.  I picked up a pro circuit full system and the power up kit from crfsonly along with a twin air filter and BBR rev box.  I know I may sound like a lunatic but I am very surprised and happy with the power she made completely stock so any little improvements I gain from simple tuning and bolt ons will be more than enough for me.  I ordered some ProTaper bars and adapters to open up the cockpit a little.  I'm basically trying to find anything and everything I can to improve this little bike and am open to any suggestions.  I did have a couple questions. 

 

The first is, I found a lower fork clamp on ebay that basically ties the two fork legs together at the thickest point right above the front tire.  Apparently this clamp reduces fork flex considerably for the supermoto guys but I was wondering if it would have any positive effect for trail/offroad riding.  Any ideas or experience with running a fork brace on these bikes? 

 

Next, without opening a whole can of worms on which fuel is better, is the consensus for required octane on this bike really 91 pump or higher as the manual states?  I know that there are many factors contributing to octane requirement on any given motor but I have a hard time wrapping my brain around an engine that runs 9.5:1 compression and REQUIRES 91 or higher.  I just want to know what most people are running with good results.

 

Any other tricks or tips you want to throw at me would be highly appreciated.  Please, help me spend some money and get this thing ripping. 

 

This is how she sits as of 2 days ago.  Just waiting on more parts to arrive.

 

My crf150f.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just in case you installed the 115 main jet you may want to reconsider:

 

Per Mike Coe"The 150 runs best with a 110 main, 42 pilot, and stock needle with the clip in the 4th groove from the top.(with stock pipe and baffles removed)"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hmmm, my needle only has two grooves and it was in the richest position. Power up kit is on the way though so ill do some fiddling with settings and find what's best. Thanks for the info Vortec. Any other tips?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here's a pic of the 150r fender and fork brace installed. I think it looks a hell of a lot better than the stock fender which is basically off the 230.

image.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You've missed a very important detail.

It's still clean: go ride it!!!

:)

 

I did take it out once for about 2 hours and had to stop.  It just needs so much work in stock form to become rideable by someone my size. 6'5"  240lbs.  I started having too much fun and that's when it got dangerous. So after a good shakedown run to identify the biggest issues here I am waiting for parts.  I just wanted to try and learn as much as I can from the experts.  Those of you that owned one of these for years and know all about them and how to make them better.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I did take it out once for about 2 hours and had to stop.  It just needs so much work in stock form to become rideable by someone my size. 6'5"  240lbs.  I started having too much fun and that's when it got dangerous. So after a good shakedown run to identify the biggest issues here I am waiting for parts.  I just wanted to try and learn as much as I can from the experts.  Those of you that owned one of these for years and know all about them and how to make them better.

 

Damn! You're a REALLY big guy.

You sure you want to drop all that loot trying to beef up this mini sized bike?

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Damn! You're a REALLY big guy.

You sure you want to drop all that loot trying to beef up this mini sized bike?

 

Thank you, and hell yes, absolutely!  I've had several minis in the past and enjoyed the hell out of every one of them.  I rode a KSR110 on the street when I was stationed in Japan, I've owned a DRZ110, 2 KLX110s, a KLX125, a KX100, just to name a few.  I have so much fun on mini bikes, just as fun as the big bikes IMO.  All things considered, this is one of my bigger "minis" and I already know I'm gonna have a blast on it.

 

Update:  I got a bunch of parts today and immediately went to work on her.  The power up kit, BBR rev box, Twin Air filter, and fork springs all got installed.  Fork springs feel great, haven't really had a chance to test the new jetting and air filter because the BBR rev box came to me broken.  Kind of disappointed with this because this is the second time I've received a bad cdi from BBR, and I've only ever ordered 2!  :banghead:  A quick call to BBR was all it took though, great guys everytime I talk to them and they are sending me another rev box.  So in the meantime I will be testing the new upgrades this weekend with the OEM CDI and I'll report back.  At least it will give me a chance to see if the BBR unit makes any difference from stock.  Last time I ordered one I installed it with a U-flow kit and jetting on my KLX110 so I couldn't tell if it made any difference by itself.  The combination of the three mods did make a huge difference on that little 110 though.

 

Also, want to thank VortecCPI for the excellent review on the Hagon rear shock.  I talked to Bruce today and have my shock ordered.  Very excited to try this out.

 

So to sum up with a quick review on the parts I recieved today,

 

CRFsOnly Power up kit:  The OEM jets and needle were easy to install, no instructions so I had no idea what the little brass collar was for until I thoroughly observed the carb and realized it replaces the one that is at the 6 o'clock position of the carb bore.  The manual calls this a needle jet and I've never swapped one out before so I didn't know what the hell I was looking at when I saw it in the parts kit.  There are NO instructions with any part of the power up kit so I hope I installed everything correctly.  You can tell that the Needle itself is drastically leaner (larger root diameter and taper) than the stock needle but the "needle jet" has a much larger bore to it.  The T-handle fuel screw needed to be ground down considerably on the "T" part itself to clear the base of the carb bowl as you screwed it in.  5 minutes with a file is all it took.  With everything buttoned up, new air filter oiled and installed, and the stock CDI reinstalled :rolleyes: , she fired right up with no choke.  I'll mess with the tuning when I get her good and warmed up out on the trails this weekend.  There is an option on CRFsOnly website to add a "removal tool" for $5 bucks and I thought it was to help with removal of the "D" shaped OEM fuel screw.  What I got was a stiff length of steel wire with a loop at one end and a short piece of rubber tubing.  Again, no instructions, so I had no idea what this was supposed to help me remove.  Didn't end up using it so save yourself $5 bucks and don't bother.

 

BBR Fork springs:  I've bought these before for my other minis and as always they look to be of very good quality.  Install was as easy as it gets.  Unscrew the cap, remove the old, drop the new ones in.  Voila!  I did also dump the oil that was in there and filled the forks to 136mm (per BBR's recommendation) with Maxima 15w oil.  Just from sitting on the bike and pushing through the stroke it feels much better than the pogo stick feeling I got with the OEM setup.  After talking with Bruce today about the shock he also informed me that he midifies the front forks to perform much better so as soon as I can get some testing and setup done with everything else I'll be shipping my forks off to him to get modded.  He offers this service for $100 for both forks.  I asuume it's just valving mods, or midifying the damping rods or something.  He really didn't go into much detail other than to say it makes a drastic improvement.

 

Stay tuned for more updates and please feel free to educate me on anything else I should be working on.  Thanks guys.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Also, want to thank VortecCPI for the excellent review on the Hagon rear shock.  I talked to Bruce today and have my shock ordered.  Very excited to try this out.

 

Thank you for sending business Bruce's way.  He is a great guy and he will do everything he can to help you get your bike right.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you for sending business Bruce's way.  He is a great guy and he will do everything he can to help you get your bike right.

 

 My pleasure, I love small businesses and from the two conversations I had with Bruce I am already glad I decided to go with him and the Hagon.  Did you send your forks to him as well?  I'm wondering what voodoo suspension magic he works on these archaic damper rod forks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 My pleasure, I love small businesses and from the two conversations I had with Bruce I am already glad I decided to go with him and the Hagon.  Did you send your forks to him as well?  I'm wondering what voodoo suspension magic he works on these archaic damper rod forks.

 

Bruce will weld up the compression holes and drill a new series of compression holes.  He may also weld up one of the rebound holes.  I did this myself to my wife's CRF100 and, although it was my first attempt, it did wonders.  The front end used to be harsh and worthless on square edges and the front tire did not track straight.  Now the front end is plush, the rebound is better, and the front tire stays on your line.

 

The factory does not do this due to manufacturing costs.  It's a lot cheaper, easier, and faster to drill two identical holes as opposed to quite a few of differing sizes.

 

Stock DR forks are pretty bad.  They have little rebound control, bottom during slow suspension movement speeds and lock during high suspension movement speeds.  This is the worst of all worlds.  They suffer from brake dive, fast rebound, harshness...  They do just about everything poorly but they are dirt cheap to manufacture and produce.

Revalved DR forks are really amazing and the price is right.  You will be very surprised at the difference.

Edited by VortecCPI

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So honestly which would be better, Gold Valves from racetech or sending my DRs to Bruce?  I can get gold valves for $140 and install myself, correct?  With the shipping and labor to send to Bruce it'd cost about the same but seems like a completely different way to "valve" for my weight.  Is his tuning more personalized and therefore more effective or should I go with Gold Valves to have something that is adjustable, all be it a pain in the ass?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So honestly which would be better, Gold Valves from racetech or sending my DRs to Bruce?  I can get gold valves for $140 and install myself, correct?  With the shipping and labor to send to Bruce it'd cost about the same but seems like a completely different way to "valve" for my weight.  Is his tuning more personalized and therefore more effective or should I go with Gold Valves to have something that is adjustable, all be it a pain in the ass?

 

I will answer this question after I complete my tasks this morning.  Please stand by...

Edited by VortecCPI

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oh man, I'm in for a good read, I can tell.  :ride:

 

Okay...  Bruce will setup your forks specifically for you and your riding conditions.  He will cut your springs and configure your damper rods accordingly.  This has a unique advantage in that it is work done just for you.  Your forks are custom-tuned.

 

Race Tech Cartridge Emulators are a generic device that can be tuned as well.  They work very well right out of the box and will significantly improve your forks.  We went this route because Bruce was laid up in the hospital for such a long period of time.  Had Bruce been able to do the work we would not have used them.  They do nothing to address the fork springs, which is an important factor in the equation.

 

So what are the overall differences?

 

Bruce takes care of everything.  Your forks come back completely assembled with spring rates corrected for your weight.  It is a turn-key deal.  Very nice.  No adjustability except for fork oil weight and oil height.  However, I know for a fact Bruce will do whatever it takes to make you happy so if you need some fine tuning he will do it for you.

 

Race Tech Cartridge Emulators require minor fork disassembly and can be installed with the forks right on the bike.  You are stuck with the stock springs or maybe one BBR spring and you have 3/4" of spring preload.  Not really the ideal solution.  You can make many adjustments to the emulators but to do so you must remove the fork caps, fork springs, and emulators.  It is a messy job but not that bad.

 

So what are the advantages and disadvantages?

 

Revised damper rods work incredibly well.  They are, however, position sensitive and there is no ONE configuration that works for every type of riding condition.  An enduro track would require different damper rods than an MX track.  The same goes for hard pack or soft mud and sand.  It is a compromise but it is a very good compromise.

 

Race Tech Cartridge Emulators are not position sensitive.  They can "blow their top" at almost any point in the fork stroke.  This means you can hit a square edge at almost any point in the fork stroke and they will work.  Forks with revised damper rods will handle square edges very well within the first part of the stroke but not within the last part of the stroke.

So what does all this stuff mean to you?

 

As set of forks from Bruce will be custom-tuned just for you and will probably give you the best lap times because you need do nothing except enjoy the new-found performance.

 

As set of forks with emulators will most likely not perform as well as forks from Bruce because they have not been custom-tuned for your needs and your forks are not properly sprung.  Your forks will be magnitudes better than stock so you will be faster but they are not at their full potential until they are tweaked to your needs.  Once tweaked and properly sprung, however, they should perform better due to the non-position-sensitive aspect.

So what should you do?

 

If you like to fiddle with things and really need an ability to tune your forks due to many different riding conditions I'd say emulators are the way to go.

 

If you don't want to fiddle around and you typically ride in the same conditions I'd recommend you send your forks to Bruce and be done with it.

 

The good news is either way you choose you will have significantly improved forks.

Edited by VortecCPI
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We have a CRF150 with a Hlebo-tuned shock and stock forks.  We have already decided we will NOT be using cartridge emulators in that bike.  We will be using a set of Bruce-tuned forks so I will do a full test and review here shortly.

 

I sent one of my CRF230 customers to Bruce to have his forks done and he was blown away by the difference.  Bruce has been tuning these vintage bikes for decades and he knows just about all there is to know.  Not only does he have decades of tuning and riding experience, he is also very knowledgeable with respect to the engineering aspects (fluid and spring dynamics, etc.) related to suspension.  And he personally rides a CRF230.

Edited by VortecCPI
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you so much for the incredibly detailed explanation. You answered every question i and others could have possibly had about the pros and cons of each. Describing the effects of Bruce's tuning felt like you were listing everything i want from improving the front suspension. For me now, it's a no brainer. Definitely will be sending my forks to Bruce as soon as he's ready for me to send them. If all other aspects were equal just the fact that he will get me the correct spring rate makes all the sense in the world. I could have Kayaba SSS A-kits on my bike and if they weren't sprung for my weight it would feel like $10,000 garbage. I'm starting to get real excited now. Thanks again Vortec! Great info.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Update: I got the risers and ProTapers installed and was able to do some carb tuning today. I opened up the top of the air box with a box cutter, removed about as much plastic as the size of the hole that was left from the snorkel, effectively doubling the opening size. I ended up with the needle clip in the very bottom position to get rid of as much bog as possible. The fuel screw and idle is adjusted properly. Also running 42 pilot and 115 main. Anything above 1/4 RPMs and less than full throttle feels great. Once the RPMs rise I can go full throttle no problem. I just have to be easy with the throttle at anything below 1/4 revs or it will bog bad. Does that sound about right to everyone? Also installed some Fastway F3 foot pegs. Very nice quality, lots of adjustability, and gave me about an inch lower position which is why I got them. And they don't hang any lower due to the very slim profile. Much increased grip too feels great. Some graphics and she's coming together quite nicely. Going to be installing the 230 swinger tonight to add about 2 inches of wheelbase and hopefully a little bit more stability. Here's some pics.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Update: Got the 230 swingarm mounted up along with the BBR linkage and the combination of the two raised the seat height quite a bit. Feels much more balanced front to rear now. She felt pretty nose high after installing the BBR fork springs but now she sits perfect. Especially when riding around. Also got a chance to do a little testing and I think I got the straight line stability i was looking for. Doesn't seem to have slowed down the steering or maneuverability either. Just feels less "nervous". Also, the rear suspension seems to actually feel more plush, could just be in my head. I'm still very much looking forward to my Hagon shock. I decided to swap out the stock battery for a Shorai since I've had these in the past on my streetbikes and they are a great way to lose pounds and in this case gain cranking amps. These batteries also last very long in "storage" because they do not self discharge, so they don't need to be hooked up to a battery tender all the time. Very reliable battery in my experience. Stay tuned, more to come.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Reply with:

Sign in to follow this  

×