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CRF230 Engine vs XR200 Engine

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I have heard time and time again the XR200 is way better, way faster, than a CRF230.  The XR200 has slightly more compression and slighter longer cam timing.  The CRF230 has bigger, straighter ports with larger valves and a larger carburetor and probably a better exhaust system.

I have ridden a few XR200s and three CRF230s (properly jetted and uncorked) and there is no way an XR200 runs as well as any of the three CRF230s I have put my leg over.  No way.  Not even close.  Mike Coe has confirmed this yet people still stick to their guns.  I can only assume they have never ridden a properly-jetted CRf230.  Maybe the one's they've ridden were bone-stock or had a 132 main jet.  Who knows?

 

I would like to add right now that I LOVE the old XR200s.  They are, arguably, the most bullet-proof, capable competitive, dependable, proven, reliable, and downright fun bikes ever made.  An incredible history and an incredible line of fantastic machines.  I can vividly remember drooling over the very first XR200R when I was in high school.  What an awesome bike!

So as I sat on my garage floor looking at my CRF230 with Yuengling in hand I pondered the comparison.  If we compare the XR200 engine and CRF230 engine as we might compare a 396 BB Chevy and 454 BB Chevy (they are about the same ratio) what would we think then?

I will set them up and run them with Desktop Dyno and see what happens.  I will do a single cylinder and V8 just for fun.  My guess is the 230/454 will out-torque the 200/396 big a large margin, producing not only more HP but also a broader range of torque.

What do you think?

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They all started out as an xl100 in the 70's....

Any ones crystal ball predicting what the next incarnation will be in the future ?

Catalytic converter? Fuel injection?

Rear disk brake? More compression?

Better suspension? Roller rocker arms? Manufactured in China?

Or Just:

Bold New Graphics?

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They all started out as an xl100 in the 70's....

Any ones crystal ball predicting what the next incarnation will be in the future ?

Catalytic converter? Fuel injection?

Rear disk brake? More compression?

Better suspension? Roller rocker arms? Manufactured in China?

Or Just:

Bold New Graphics?

 

All wrong - New color for plug boot and rear spring.

Okay - Here it is.  XR200 has higher CR, smaller valves, and longer cam timing.  I didn't expect this much difference.  Please note this is only a very quick simulation.  I realize the numbers shown do not reflect actual numbers we would see in the real world.  I did this simply as a comparison between two similar engines with differences stated above.

I do find it interesting the XR200 makes slightly more HP at very high engine speeds.  This actually does not surprise me given its much longer cam duration (comparatively) and higher CR.  The XR200s I've ridden were quite good on the top end.  I'd say they were on par with, or slightly better than, the CRF230s I've ridden.  The bottom end and midrange, however, was no contest - CRF230 is much fatter.

So how about it?  Who out there has ridden with an XR200 and CRF230 (that was properly jetted) and seen the results of the "contest"?  I've run my CRF230 against XR250s on a 300 foot dirt dragstrip and I always do just fine.  I always get big leads out of the hole due to the CRF230s stupid amounts of low and mid torque, which allow me to do 2nd gear leaves.  By the time they catch me I'm near the end.

Note:  The two 1984 Al Baker XR265s we had would leave the line in third gear no problem.  I've not tried this with my CRF230 but my guess is it would not work too well.  We've done it with a YZ250F and it works great.  Sorry about the clutch...

XR200 vs CRF230.JPG

396 vs 454.JPG

Edited by VortecCPI
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As Mr. Mixxer says "If aint got no dyno, you aint got shit"  Sorry Mixxer that should be taken with humor in mind.

The 200 has quite a bit less rotating mass,  The 200 has fairly agressive spark ignition, the 200 has no rev limiter.  It may feel more powerful because of these things.

Where the rubber meets the road at my house. If I pit my built 218 powered bike against my 230 powered bike the 218 pulls the 230 pretty bad.  I am completely confident that the 230 with similar compression and camshaft will flip the outcome of the race.

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13 hours ago, steffyboy said:

are the rockers the same in xr200's and the crf230?

I doubt it because the included valve angle is different between the two engines and that would change the rockers (other things being equal).

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I believe the valve angles and rocker geometry are the same. The XR exhaust rocker is different because it has a tab for the compression release but they swap out just fine. I am in the process of machining a 230 head to use the XR compression release and XR rocker. EO used to sell a compression release setup using XR parts.

One more data point here,... I Ran an XR 218 stroker for several years and loved it. Now Im running the XR bottom end with a 230 crank and top end. Despite a 67 bore, ST1.5 cam, and a little bit longer stroke, its not really much different. I don't think there is more than a 5-10% difference in power anywhere and that's probably the extra displacement (218 vs 233) The power delivery feels exactly the same, just a bit more in the middle. I still like the 230 parts because of the ball bearing cam and better cam chain system. The old XR stroker was a gem for its time and you can't overlook the 15 lbs weight savings of kickstart.

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JAAAAAA   200cc   V 222cc      built 240cc  V  270cc . Very easy for you gear heads   take the 230 put a sleeve in it to reduce to 200ccc   then compare. JAAAAAAAAA

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I compared my XR80 framed bike with a XR200 engine against the BBR framed CRF230. The XR200 had a pipe and 28 mikuni carb. The CRF230 had a pipe and PWK 28mm carb. That was prior to dialing in the PWK carb or big bore, porting etc. 

The 230 engine was noticeably stronger. Like a gear taller going up a hp hill climb. 

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1 hour ago, Chuck. said:

Well that certainly opens up options for a better top end on the XR.

Unfortunately the parts are within the range of modification but not exactly interchangable. 

A head swap is easiest. A hybrid cam with ball bearings and ignition shaft is the biggest missing link. You could then run the XR cam chain and stock cyl. I think you could bore a CRF150f cyl (same height as Xr) and that would let you use a CRF150 cam chain and tensioner. 

Still stock stroke though unless you have an ultra rare XR stroker crank. If you want an even longer stroke CRF crank it gets messy,..

Using the CRF crank requires an "L" crank with keyway but then the flywheel shaft needs to be shortened. Might be able to use an F crank and 150F flywheel but then have to mix-n-match primary gear parts.... bore gear - fit to xr basket etc. swap oil pump gear etc,.. I haven't proven the "F" crank theory, mine is an "L" crank. I also avoided the hybrid cam issue by coming up with a crank trigger which was a difficult thing.

I went through the effort because it was the only option for a 6 speed kickstart using 230 parts.

Now the 06+ CRF150 with 225 kit looks like a lighter e-start option but still suffers from the 5 speed. I know everyone agrees that a built motor doesn't need a six speed but for me i need the wider speed range for dual sporting.

The last option is to mix in some Zongshen parts for even more options.

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  Ok, I'm back guys. Been out of town for work 3 out of the last 7 weeks and the wife and I have redone the living room, kitchen, an foyer (plus the holidays) so progress on the XR/CRF projects has slipped down the priority list and is thus dragging out. I'm going to have our welder look at modding the combustion chamber (as mentioned in Mixxer's compression thread) on the CRF230 head, as well as repairing the port/valve seat break thru, next week. (thanks again for sending me the head Ricky). Ricky also sent me the valve cover (230) so I will measure it and see if the valve/rocker/cam geometry is indeed the same between the 200 and the 230. If they are, I'm also going to machine the 230's valve cover for the 200's comp release (the casting looks the same, just no machining for the XR's parts). I've finished modifying the Xr250L pumper carb (new parts) to gain extra clearance to fit it to my XR200 but still need to make a manifold and get an XR250 air boot to finish that set-up. I've got my +4mm offset crankpin for my XR crank but I NEED A NEW ROD before I can have my crank rebuilt with it. The 230 oil pump  I ordered (E-Bay) is here and the clutch basket is coming for the primary drive swap (to reduce loads on the clutch/trans) I'm going to do. Looks like I'm just going to have to source a new 230L crank gear to finish that change. The used 230's piston I have is right on the deck height difference between it and a 200 piston to make it a straight drop in to the 200 engine with the +4mm increase in stroke using the stock length 200 rod. 

   So,,, chime in guys. I need direction in life.   :excuseme:

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Well then get the cases split so you can mock up the crank and check clearance. You have a used rod right? You can clearance it and see if this combo will work before grinding on a new rod. Done yet😂

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this is my xr200 short tracker. I run it against 230's. stock stroke intake was moved to center,head welded up and re shaped and big megacycle cam. the lower end finally gave up the ghost , the new motor will be done soon.

IMG_3731.JPG

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  Hey Ricky, If I yank the motor from my XR and tear it down before I get all my "stuff" then it'll be down longer and then how am I suppose to ride my 4 1/2 tear old grandson around our yard in my lap. He doesn't like riding on my CRF"290", says; "no super fast Papa". He likes riding on the XR better. I ask him; "which bike you wanna ride?" and he always points at the XR. A man's gotta keep his priorities in order, right?

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Im anxious for you to confirm that the +4 pin - 230 piston - xr stock rod combo will work. 

If the CRF150 cylinder is the same height as an XR, (I think it is) you might bore and use that instead. Not sure if it will need to be sleeved too? It would let you swap over the 150 cam chain and tensioner. I have had two XR tensioner arms fail so far. Or weld a mounting pad onto the cyl for a 230 style manual tensioner

Rod notch is the big question. I think your only option is a 5 speed. Possibly change the ratio of that gear pair to get clearance? Between all the XR variants, I suspect there are alternate ratios?

I pondered whether you could split the difference and remove some from the gear teeth and some from the rod. I'm not sure where most of the load is carried on gear teeth? 

I'm running only .025 clearance from notched rod to gear right now and I think I see evidence of touching on the gear while looking in with a flashlight. Can't be sure because I can't see the bottom of the rod to confirm but I ran it hard so far with no consequences or noise so its going back together. It will either live forever that way,... clearance itself,... or explode.

 

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 Thanks Woods. My XR is currently all together and running but the kick start ratchet is pretty worn and in need of replacement. When I pull the motor apart I'm gonna do all the mods. I have a spare, big fin, 200X cylinder (it's got a cracked liner) that I'm gonna get re-sleeved, preferably in the manner (2mm off-set forward) I mentioned earlier . The cam chain tensioner on the XR has never given me probs (I've had the bike 25 years) so I figure I'm ok with the std. XR tensioner. The gear clearance issues you mentioned I've checked and noted with the 3 wheeler (Sparks, 200X) motor I have and I'm definitely gonna get that squared up before it all goes back together. The 4mm offset pin (and it's associated issues) is something that Green Human seems to have experience with and he seems to be pretty confident that's it's do-able. There's a thread in the XR200 forum that is paralleling this thread on concerning these same issues and you kind of have to go back and forth to get the whole picture.

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