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Help on tips/suggestions for new 250 2 stroke rider!

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Hello, I have recently bought a 2003 Yamaha YZ250. To be honest, no I have not ridden dirt bikes in over 6 years. I grew up riding on a Yamaha 80cc bike as a child but eventually grew out of it and because I live in the city the only place I ride is at my cabin. I took a break from dirt biking for a while until my uncle convinced me to get back into it with him. I'm 18, 6 foot 1 and 190 pounds so physically I believe I can handle it, but I lack the experience. I got one ride on it last fall but I wasn't able to get out more because I bought it late into the year. Anyways, when I was riding I was still not used to the rapid powerband on it and the overall power. Does anyone have any suggestions or tips about riding 250 2 strokes specifically on pipelines and other trails? I know I will eventually get acclimate to it but I would prefer to learn as fast as I can to keep up with my uncle who also has a 250 2 stroke. He grew up on them and is more used to it than me but he doesn't know any technical things so he isn't much help to me. I understand it isn't suggested to jump right to a 250 especially a 2 stroke but this is the type of bike I want and I'll stick with it until I am completely used to it. Thank you in advance for any suggestions and tips!

Edited by BrandonTMeharg

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I'm pretty new to the 2 stroke as well I bought a honda cr250 this winter my first ride I was a bit rough and the other day I was doing a weely and hit the power band and flipped it over. Only thing I can really say is keep riding and if she bucks you get back on and try again

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Hey Brandon, before last year I haven't ridden a dirt bike since I was 14 and now I'll be 37 in July, and run in the lead pack of our local "c" class for mx and looking forward to the "b" class.  I also bought a 250 2t but now own a 250 4t and love it :-) but that's another story hahaha. I'm no pro but I pretty much focus on learning the right way to do things so that I don't ingrain bad habits and enjoy my bike more and more. In my opinion I would start with setting up the bike to your best ability (sag, comp, reb, levers, and handlebar position). Then learn the proper body position to be in for certain situations (braking, acceleration, cornering, etc) also a huge thing is learning on how to hold on to your bike properly so that your in control to the best of your ability. Practice practice practice I get out at least 1 a week to the track and train crossfit 3 to 4 times a week, also learn at your own speed don't be trying to keep up with someone out of your league, practice at a comfortable pace and by the time you realize it you'll be going faster and faster.  Here are a few links to help you out, there is tons of info on youtube.

Suspension set up: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ny8rcqLwIas

 

Body position:

 

 

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Keep your balls on the tank. 2t's have a very light feeling front end. It was even more apparent when I came back to a RM 250 from a CRF 450.

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Toss a flywheel weight on it. It will really smooth out the "hit" and help prevent stalling.

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Toss a flywheel weight on it. It will really smooth out the "hit" and help prevent stalling.

What he said!

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I've always been a small dude, so I've always been at a disadvantage. But you couldn't pry my fingers off of a 250 if you try'd. I love them, also just got back into riding last summer after a break and it's amazing how much of it clicked.

It's all about learning the bike, along with body position. Body position will take some playing with to find comfort zones for certain terrains. But once to get that down and using that clutch and gas and throwing weight around there is nothing you can't do on these machines.

As long as you learn to make that rear wheel do what you want you'll be in the clear.

Practice practice practice!

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Good advice above. What I haven't seen mentioned is clutch control. It's importand to work the hell out of that thing, it's your power connection. 85s and 125s pretty much demand clutch control but a 250 lets you get away with less skill. Don't let that stop you from learning to use the clutch to feed smooth power out of corners, loft the front wheel as needed for creeks and logs and stay in the powerband on hillclimbs. Whether MX or woods, I'm clutching almost constantly for traction or drive. You don't need the clutch to shift but you do need it for control.

 

#1 most important as mentioned above though is body position. Without that, you are a passenger, out of control. Study the hell out of the videos on Youtube. Lots of great 'how to ride' tutorials there.

Edited by sandlvr69
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Check your timing, (see the timing thread under Yamaha 2 stroke facts) Mine was 2 degrees advanced from stock. I put it to 2 degrees retarded and it made a huge difference on the hit. I also installed a fly wheel weight and that helped as well.

The bug

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Hello, I have recently bought a 2003 Yamaha YZ250. To be honest, no I have not ridden dirt bikes in over 6 years. I grew up riding on a Yamaha 80cc bike as a child but eventually grew out of it and because I live in the city the only place I ride is at my cabin. I took a break from dirt biking for a while until my uncle convinced me to get back into it with him. I'm 18, 6 foot 1 and 190 pounds so physically I believe I can handle it, but I lack the experience. I got one ride on it last fall but I wasn't able to get out more because I bought it late into the year. Anyways, when I was riding I was still not used to the rapid powerband on it and the overall power. Does anyone have any suggestions or tips about riding 250 2 strokes specifically on pipelines and other trails? I know I will eventually get acclimate to it but I would prefer to learn as fast as I can to keep up with my uncle who also has a 250 2 stroke. He grew up on them and is more used to it than me but he doesn't know any technical things so he isn't much help to me. I understand it isn't suggested to jump right to a 250 especially a 2 stroke but this is the type of bike I want and I'll stick with it until I am completely used to it. Thank you in advance for any suggestions and tips!

Gear up and make sure you're covered on your parents insurance. The ONLY way to get used to a 2 stroke is to ride it and it's probably gonna get ahead of you. A lot. And, every once in awhile, you're gonna go down.

 

Step 2, sell or trade the YZ on a 230 or 250 four stroke trail bike. MUCH easier to learn to ride.

 

 

If you insist and like a good challenge;

 

Think in terms of sitting forward in the saddle in an aggresive posture (the 'attack' position). This will help with when the bike tries to leave without you when you're getting used to being 'on the pipe' or 'in the powerband'. It's quite sudden. if you're sitting back or even neutral, you're gonna get a lot of unplanned wheelie practice.

 

2 strokes are made to be ridden reved up. You can't be lugging it like you can with a 4s. You'll foul the plug which will make matters worse.

 

There is no engine braking with a 2 stoke so, think in terms of momentum to carry you up, over and through obstacles, and getting smooth with your brakes, only as much as you need and get back on the throttle.

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Gear up and make sure you're covered on your parents insurance. The ONLY way to get used to a 2 stroke is to ride it and it's probably gonna get ahead of you. A lot. And, every once in awhile, you're gonna go down.

 

Step 2, sell or trade the YZ on a 230 or 250 four stroke trail bike. MUCH easier to learn to ride.

 

 

If you insist and like a good challenge;

 

Think in terms of sitting forward in the saddle in an aggresive posture (the 'attack' position). This will help with when the bike tries to leave without you when you're getting used to being 'on the pipe' or 'in the powerband'. It's quite sudden. if you're sitting back or even neutral, you're gonna get a lot of unplanned wheelie practice.

 

2 strokes are made to be ridden reved up. You can't be lugging it like you can with a 4s. You'll foul the plug which will make matters worse.

 

There is no engine braking with a 2 stoke so, think in terms of momentum to carry you up, over and through obstacles, and getting smooth with your brakes, only as much as you need and get back on the throttle.

2 strokes do not need to be revved up to be ridden right.  They have an abundance of torque at low rpms, especially a yz.  If you foul a plug when lugging you are running too rich of jetting on either the pilot or needle position or both. 

 

For advice, take your time and learn throttle control.  Learn to ride it smooth and if you want to make some mods to the bike than a flywheel weight, a good porting job and retarding the timing will all help to smooth the power. 

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2 strokes do not need to be revved up to be ridden right.  They have an abundance of torque at low rpms, especially a yz. 

Maybe you have a special YZ? Or, we have different views on the word 'abundant'?

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Get in an open field or dirt road and run it hard as you can through the gears at different distances. Mix it all up out there with turns, etc. . You'll get that feeling of the band pretty quick and start knowing when it's coming and when you want to use it on your terms.

Helped me.

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I'm sorry but if ur not revin the engine to build up rpms then ur not ridin the yz250 correctly.. If ur just putting around all the time ur gonna foul a hole lot if plugs..like the other dude said find a field and get the hang of when to shift. Mx bikes are ment to be riden hard.. So go gave fun and beat the shit out of it:)

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I had a 05 yz250 for basically my first bike when I started learning.  I still have it.  Still haven't done a piston on it and never fouled a plug once.  And For the first few years I lugged it every where and had plently of low end power.  I eventually got real good on the bike.  But I still lug it through the woods when needed.  I have recently upgraded to a yz450.. I think everyone should learn on a 2 stroke because it makes switching to a four stroke so easy.  The 4 stroke is way easier to ride.

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Maybe you have a special YZ? Or, we have different views on the word 'abundant'?

A YZ250 has much more torque on the bottom end than its 250f counterpart that you recommend.  If you are fouling plugs when lugging than you have far too large of a pilot jet in or have a worn out top end.  That might be the reason that you feel it has no torque. 

11_yz250_mod.jpg

 

11_yz250F-dyno.jpg

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A YZ250 has much more torque on the bottom end than its 250f counterpart that you recommend.  If you are fouling plugs when lugging than you have far too large of a pilot jet in or have a worn out top end.  That might be the reason that you feel it has no torque.

The point was that you can't lug (most people think of that term as meaning really low RPM, kinda coasting) a 2 stroke like you can a 4. The point was that it is MUCH easier to learn to ride a 4 stroke than a 2 stroke. The point was that you can lug a 4 stroke and get around easier than a 2 stoke. The point is that if you lug around a stroke well down in the RPM's, you're gonna foul the plug before too long because a properly jetted 2 stroke is too rich if not run up 'in the pipe'. The point was, and you're the first person I've heard try to argue otherwise, that 2 strokes are harder to ride, to learn to ride, because they are made to be ridden 'in the pipe', a term most people think of as meaning higher revs, especailly compared to a 4 stroke and 'in the pipe' is where all the excitement starts, the suddeness and explsiveness and, when you get used to it, the fun, of a 2 stroke.

 

I'm not sure why you would provide two graphics showing total torque. That wasn't the point. The point was torque down low in RPM's as a new rider would tend to do. Show one comparing torque of both at about 2-3k. 

 

Now, if you'd like to argue to the OP that it's better to learn how to ride a 2 stroke, we'er in total agreement. But, that wasn't the point. The point was that it is easier to learn to ride a 4 stroke because you can 'lug' them and get away with it easier and better than you can with a 2 stroke.

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The point was that you can't lug (most people think of that term as meaning really low RPM, kinda coasting) a 2 stroke like you can a 4. The point was that it is MUCH easier to learn to ride a 4 stroke than a 2 stroke. The point was that you can lug a 4 stroke and get around easier than a 2 stoke. The point is that if you lug around a stroke well down in the RPM's, you're gonna foul the plug before too long because a properly jetted 2 stroke is too rich if not run up 'in the pipe'. The point was, and you're the first person I've heard try to argue otherwise, that 2 strokes are harder to ride, to learn to ride, because they are made to be ridden 'in the pipe', a term most people think of as meaning higher revs, especailly compared to a 4 stroke and 'in the pipe' is where all the excitement starts, the suddeness and explsiveness and, when you get used to it, the fun, of a 2 stroke.

 

I'm not sure why you would provide two graphics showing total torque. That wasn't the point. The point was torque down low in RPM's as a new rider would tend to do. Show one comparing torque of both at about 2-3k. 

 

Now, if you'd like to argue to the OP that it's better to learn how to ride a 2 stroke, we'er in total agreement. But, that wasn't the point. The point was that it is easier to learn to ride a 4 stroke because you can 'lug' them and get away with it easier and better than you can with a 2 stroke.

Im pretty sure those dyno graphs provide the entire measurable range of torque, not just peak.  The yz250 dyno chart shows at 3k rpm.  The 250f does not, however it is pretty easy to see that the yz is putting out roughly 13 ft/lbs at 3k and the 250f is putting out only 15 ft/lbs at 5500 rpms.  Accuracy on a dyno isn't very good at the low rpms however the 250f would be well below 13 ft/lbs at the 3k rpm mark. 

 

It is not torque that makes a 4 stroke "easier" to ride, it is the linear powerband and stability of them that does.  I will agree that for learning the basics such as starting, stopping is easier on a 4 stroke.  I will argue however that you will learn far more if on a 2 stroke as you will need to learn proper rear brake control, clutch modulation, momentum preservation and how to find traction.  These are much more advanced yes, but are necessary to learn if your ultimate goal is to race safely.

 

 

Finally...  I am arguing that you CAN lug a 2 stroke just fine.  If it has good compression with fresh rings, is mechanically sound and is jetted correctly you can ride below 5,000 rpms all day and never foul a plug.  Just because they produce their best power at high rpms does not mean it needs to be ridden there.  4 strokes make their best power high in the rpms too.  The entire point of every 250 2 stroke since the early 80s having a power valve was not to increase top end power, but to make the bike rideable at both low AND high rpms.  It is a simple fact, if you foul a plug EVER, your bike either has something wrong with it (ie low compression, weak ignition/spark, wrong/ too cold of a plug etc...) or it is jetted/tuned incorrectly.  The only time my bike has ever been rich enough to foul a plug was when I am at the dunes.  I jet it that way to ensure adequate lubrication and cooling for the extreme load put on the motor in the sand.  Luckily when at the dunes I don't have to worry about fouling because I am constantly on the gas hard.  When I get back, I rejet the carb though, I don't just leave it and hope to not foul plugs. 

 

To the OP, if you are fouling plugs make friends with someone who knows what they are doing and they will help you get the bike sorted.  Although I don't think you are having that issue since you didn't mention it!

Edited by c-slak
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Maybe you have a special YZ? Or, we have different views on the word 'abundant'?

 

Whilst on the subject. The attack riding position would be a standing position :rolleyes: .

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