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I've been out of it for a while.

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My last two bikes were XR400's but haven't owned one in 10 years.  I loved the durability of them but would like something newer and lighter.  Since I've been out of the loop for so long I have a few questions before I buy my next bike.

 

1. Does anyone make a bike that doesn't require rebuilding the top end ever year?  I remember this from when the CRF250X came out and thought it was a little crazy to do on a 4 stroke.  It may not be true anymore or maybe it was never true but I don't want that much maintenance. 

 

2. I'll be single track riding with my 9 year old son on his XR70.  Will the CRF250 handle the slow speed I'm going to throw at it while riding with him?

 

3. A buddy had a WR426 when I had my XR and I didn't really like how high strung the WR was.  It always wanted to be high in the RPM's in all gears resulting in a lot of shifting through the tight stuff.

 

Any suggestions/insight?

Thanks,

Paul

Edited by REC-365

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Go take an EFI  WR450F out for a ride.  I think you will be impressed.

 

I'm hoping to ride the WR250, KTM350 and CRF250 before I buy.

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I'm hoping to ride the WR250, KTM350 and CRF250 before I buy.

You dead set on a 4 stroke? My mid-life crisis made me buy a 300XC, and I love it. The kid will outrun you, anyway, as soon as he gets to a 125

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I was in the same boat with you, been out for 10 years wanted back in...Did all my research and ended up with an KTM250 (280) XCF.

 

What a woods bike! You can ride is slow and you can ride it right on the edge.

 

Of course now KTM is all the rage so they seem to go for a premium. I was looking for a 250X/WR250 but couldn't find any in decent condition worth making a drive to pickup.

 

Here's a link to my first ride back in the seat

 

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You dead set on a 4 stroke? My mid-life crisis made me buy a 300XC, and I love it. The kid will outrun you, anyway, as soon as he gets to a 125

 

Yes, I have no interest in a 2 stroke.  My son will probably run circles around me right now....LOL

 

I was in the same boat with you, been out for 10 years wanted back in...Did all my research and ended up with an KTM250 (280) XCF.

 

What a woods bike! You can ride is slow and you can ride it right on the edge.

 

Of course now KTM is all the rage so they seem to go for a premium. I was looking for a 250X/WR250 but couldn't find any in decent condition worth making a drive to pickup.

 

Here's a link to my first ride back in the seat

 

 

Hey, thanks for sharing.  My dream bike is a KTM, said I'd own one before I was dead but I don't know if I'm going to pull that off.  CRF250X's are impossible to find.  

 

Anyone want to comment on the rebuild time frame?

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I'm hoping to ride the WR250, KTM350 and CRF250 before I buy.

 

The WR250 is way underpowered in my books.  And its heavy.   The WR450F has beautiful power, especially with a bit of tweaking.  And yet its entirely controllable.   I was away from dirt biking for 20 years and I was never a racer.  I didn't find the WR450F to be a handful.  It will plunk along for hours or you can open it up and haul.  Either way, its happy.  Did I mention that WRs are basically bulletproof ?

 

I wouldn't buy a bike based on your son riding a small XR.  He'll outgrow that and in a few years you'll be tackling more challenging terrain.

 

The KTM 350 is a love it or hate it bike.  I'll leave it at that.

 

The CRF250, like most motocrossers, isn't set up for woods. 

Edited by MidlifeCrisisGuy

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If your plan is to stay in the woods trail riding and not racing your maintenance requirements will be just the norm, oil, oil filter, air filter and chain love. I'm at 300 hours on my 450 and all is well. That said the WR 250 out of the box is all choked up. Take a lil to uncorking it but there is plenty of zip for what you are after. The new WR 450 has been built around the YZ 250 frame. It's nimble for it's weight and there is a pile of bolt-on goodies right from Yamaha. The bike is pretty awesome.

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All above are good options, but I'm throwing a curveball.

 

CR500: Trail riding, that top-end will last FOR YEARS. More torque than a 450, responsive (when jetted right), simple change of a pipe changes the power, makes lazy power (don't need to be high in RPMS), easy top ends, VERY reliable bike when maintained properly, steel frame (more flex, less shock to your wrists), can add a decomp for easy starting.

 

Though, you will probably go through more rear tires....

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All above are good options, but I'm throwing a curveball.

 

CR500: Trail riding, that top-end will last FOR YEARS. More torque than a 450, responsive (when jetted right), simple change of a pipe changes the power, makes lazy power (don't need to be high in RPMS), easy top ends, VERY reliable bike when maintained properly, steel frame (more flex, less shock to your wrists), can add a decomp for easy starting.

 

Though, you will probably go through more rear tires....

 

I don't think a CR500 is a good choice for someone that a) hasn't been on a bike in 10 years and B) wants to put put around with his son on an XR70.  I'm a fan of the old CRs, but as far as wrist shock goes, most of it comes through the forks and the forks on modern bikes are miles better than those on the old CRs.

 

FWIW, its pretty easy to lop 20-25 pounds off a WR450F and turn it into a woods weapon.  Like I said, its a very versatile bike.  See the Feb issue of Dirt Bike magazine for more information.

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I'll throw out the KDX since no one else has yet. Can't buy em new but they are always a good choice for trails and durability.

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I think you'd be happy on an XR 400. You've owned em, you know what they can do, and like you stated, require very little maintenance. Yeah, they are a bit heavy.....but perfect for plunking around with the kid or blasting up some huge hills or any other nasty terrain.

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04-06 KTM 400 or 450 exc.

Or 525 exc.

they're about as mellow as you'd want and can putt or fly depending on what you want to do.

Rfs engine is a great engine.

Check cl they're out there everywhere.

Most between $1500-$3000.00 cheap and reliable.

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