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I may have made a mistake

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I apologize in advance for the long post.

 

Sooo early last week I bought a 2007 YZ250F for $2,800 (this is really cheap where I live as most are going for $3,200-$4,200) and today I felt like I may have made a mistake. Let me explain the bike and ad first...

 

The ad stated "Brand new piston and valves. Cleaned out the bottom end and crank is in good shape. Bike fires up and runs great. Has new tires front and back, Boyesen water pump, Vance and Hines full exhaust system, ASV break away clutch and break leavers, Moose Racing radiator guards, Renthal Sprocket, Pro Taper handlebars, Twin Air filter and a few other little trinkets on the bike. All other parts on the bike (chain, brakes, suspension etc.) work great and are in good condition." He had the ad up for $3,000.

 

When I went and looked at the bike I could see a couple of things right away. The plastics were in rough shape and had been stressed and scratched in multiple spots from being dropped, the exhaust was rusted with no guard, the sprockets were a little worn down and the front wheel bearings needed to be replaced. The wheels were new and it did have all the aftermarket parts he stated so he didn't lie about that. I'm no motorcycle mechanic and I've only owned one bike before this which was a TTR-125L so I didn't know for sure what I was looking for mechanically but the bike started in two kicks with no hassle and it sounded pretty good with no hiccups. I then took it for a ride down the alley and it seemed to ride ok. I was only able to get up to third gear though.

 

After my ride I started to talk to the owner and ask a few questions like why was he selling it, what maintenance he did on it and where the maintenance was done. He stated he had just bought a 2011 YZ450f and didn't need it any more and that he had changed the oil and changed the air filter every 15 hours. He said he also did the pistons and valves himself.

 

After this I told him everything that I had found wrong on it and asked if he would let me take it into a local bike shop for an inspection to find any problems. He replied that he had gotten 9 calls since the ad was posted (I was the first to call) and a couple of them said they would buy it for $3,000 no questions asked so he didn't want me to waste his time taking it for an inspection when he could sell it right away no matter what. This made me think I would never find a bike this cheap for a very long time that ran this well. So I offered him $2,800 thinking if he didn't take it I would walk. He hesitated for a bit but then he said he would take it.

 

So I took the bike that night and dropped it off at my friends to store (don't have my own storage space). I then went back two days later to check up on the bike and drop off a couple things like a stand and jerry can. That's when I saw fork oil leaking from the front forks. This made me think what else could be wrong so today I dropped it off at the local motorcycle shop for an inspection. The guy at the service desk kind of chewed me out for buying a bike before getting it inspected and it made me feel like I had made a big mistake.

 

Anyways I was wondering what you guys think and what you would have done if you were in my position. Again I apologize for the long post. I shall put an update of what the inspection comes back with once I get it.

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I ask people if I can pop the valve cover and check the valves on the spot in their shop. If the don't allow it, I lose interest. I also pull the oil filter to do a check for brass or metal. As for the leaking forks, ive seen forks start leaking the minute they get strapped down in the back of the truck from the dealer. If the bushings haven't been replaced, or if they used a cheap brand of seal. But for your story, you may have had the buyers jitters. There is no problem with taking a pen and paper in and doing a rough estimate on what needs replaced along with the initial cost of the bike. Who knows, the motor may be solid. But never let yourself get ahead of yourself. Another bike will come along. There always is another that comes along later.

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I apologize in advance for the long post.

Sooo early last week I bought a 2007 YZ250F for $2,800 (this is really cheap where I live as most are going for $3,200-$4,200) and today I felt like I may have made a mistake. Let me explain the bike and ad first...

The ad stated "Brand new piston and valves. Cleaned out the bottom end and crank is in good shape. Bike fires up and runs great. Has new tires front and back, Boyesen water pump, Vance and Hines full exhaust system, ASV break away clutch and break leavers, Moose Racing radiator guards, Renthal Sprocket, Pro Taper handlebars, Twin Air filter and a few other little trinkets on the bike. All other parts on the bike (chain, brakes, suspension etc.) work great and are in good condition." He had the ad up for $3,000.

When I went and looked at the bike I could see a couple of things right away. The plastics were in rough shape and had been stressed and scratched in multiple spots from being dropped, the exhaust was rusted with no guard, the sprockets were a little worn down and the front wheel bearings needed to be replaced. The wheels were new and it did have all the aftermarket parts he stated so he didn't lie about that. I'm no motorcycle mechanic and I've only owned one bike before this which was a TTR-125L so I didn't know for sure what I was looking for mechanically but the bike started in two kicks with no hassle and it sounded pretty good with no hiccups. I then took it for a ride down the alley and it seemed to ride ok. I was only able to get up to third gear though.

After my ride I started to talk to the owner and ask a few questions like why was he selling it, what maintenance he did on it and where the maintenance was done. He stated he had just bought a 2011 YZ450f and didn't need it any more and that he had changed the oil and changed the air filter every 15 hours. He said he also did the pistons and valves himself.

After this I told him everything that I had found wrong on it and asked if he would let me take it into a local bike shop for an inspection to find any problems. He replied that he had gotten 9 calls since the ad was posted (I was the first to call) and a couple of them said they would buy it for $3,000 no questions asked so he didn't want me to waste his time taking it for an inspection when he could sell it right away no matter what. This made me think I would never find a bike this cheap for a very long time that ran this well. So I offered him $2,800 thinking if he didn't take it I would walk. He hesitated for a bit but then he said he would take it.

So I took the bike that night and dropped it off at my friends to store (don't have my own storage space). I then went back two days later to check up on the bike and drop off a couple things like a stand and jerry can. That's when I saw fork oil leaking from the front forks. This made me think what else could be wrong so today I dropped it off at the local motorcycle shop for an inspection. The guy at the service desk kind of chewed me out for buying a bike before getting it inspected and it made me feel like I had made a big mistake.

Anyways I was wondering what you guys think and what you would have done if you were in my position. Again I apologize for the long post. I shall put an update of what the inspection comes back with once I get it.

If it just needs fork seals, front wheel bearings, a pipe guard and possibly plastics and graphics I think you did OK aslong as it really was just rebuilt with quality parts.

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If someone says they took the bottom end apart and "cleaned it" I would never buy it. Why would you need to clean out the bottom end? I can think of several bad reasons but no good ones...

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If someone says they took the bottom end apart and "cleaned it" I would never buy it. Why would you need to clean out the bottom end? I can think of several bad reasons but no good ones...

Agreed  you're just washing oil out of the bearings. He may of had a piston shatter , dropped a valve who knows that would be the only reason to clean it out. If it was mine and you're that deep into it you may as well rebuild the whole thing, unless you are going to dump it off on someone else i guess. 

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I've seen some sell higher than that needing full rebuild.

So I say take a deep breath, then wait for the estimate.

If you plan on keeping the bike, there's no need to be worried about anything, it is what it is.

Fix it and ride it. At least you will know for sure, what you have.

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If he said he did the piston and valves, along with cleaning the bottom end, it sounds like it dropped a valve and chewed it up. Does the head look newer than the cases?

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That's y when I was moving my stepson up from a ttr230 to a 250f. I bought a new husky for 4500. Cause all the 2t 125. Were over priced and the 250f were going about 3-35 then I'm looking about another grand to put a top end n. Sounds like u had your doubts when u looked at it. But u made it to be something u had to have not something u wanted. What I mean is when u buy use no emotion. Nit pick. Remember once u bought it u bought it. So look at it like u don't have to have it. Look around and come back and look later. And when u notice stuff wrong. write all the stuff down that's wrong with it and put the amount down that those parts cost. They add up fast. U could have more money tied up n it

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Anyways I was wondering what you guys think and what you would have done if you were in my position. 

When in doubt, don't.

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If the bike fires right up it's a good sign and it may have been rebuilt.

 

Fork seals can leak at any time.

 

That vintage YZ was known to be very reliable.

 

I wouldn't beat yourself up over it.  What's done is done.

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i buy all my motorized equipment used and with only a visual inspection  and an analysis on the person selling /their other equipment if it's around/ their house / ETC

 

it's a risk I am willing to take  and dealing with some of these tard sellers while you try to rip into their bike for a thorough inspection is't worth it to me and not likely going to happen

 

I have always done fine  that way  but I sure wouldn't recommend it

 

I wouldn't sweat what you did  just get it going and enjoy or sell it AS IS  for what you paid 

Edited by Zimman

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Thanks for all the replies!

 

Yeah I knew the day I saw the fork oil that I got caught up in thinking I needed it but I guess I have to deal with whatever I have now.

 

I was looking up some info and videos on rebuilding forks and it doesn't look too bad so I think I could handle that. I would be a little nervous having to do a full engine rebuild though but I do want to learn and I guess I have to start somewhere.

 

 

If he said he did the piston and valves, along with cleaning the bottom end, it sounds like it dropped a valve and chewed it up. Does the head look newer than the cases?

 

 

If a valve dropped and or a piston was shattered is there a good chance it will happen again now that he rebuilt it? No I don't remember it looking any newer than the cases.

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Thanks for all the replies!

Yeah I knew the day I saw the fork oil that I got caught up in thinking I needed it but I guess I have to deal with whatever I have now.

I was looking up some info and videos on rebuilding forks and it doesn't look too bad so I think I could handle that. I would be a little nervous having to do a full engine rebuild though but I do want to learn and I guess I have to start somewhere.

If a valve dropped and or a piston was shattered is there a good chance it will happen again now that he rebuilt it? No I don't remember it looking any newer than the cases.

No, it's a rare occurence that happens from low maintenance. It's unlikely it happened, so it probably chewed something else up.
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Honestly for that price I wouldn't be too upset, fork seals leak and the bike is 7 years old after all so if the fork seals need to be replaced as well as new plastic and graphics I think it is still a good deal. I wouldn't let the plastics get you down I mean everyone has dropped their bike or rode a little too close to a tree or bush. I would love to see a 7 year old bike that has actually been ridden without some scrapes and scratches on the plastic. Let us know what the shop has to say, hopefully they will be able to ease your mind a bit and you will be able to enjoy your new YZF. :ride:

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So I got my bike back from the shop over the weekend with the inspection report. This is what they wrote (I would attach the report but I guess you have to be a member to attach things):

 

  1. Frame - Pass
  2. Swing Arm - Fail - Some Play in linkage bearings
  3. Forks - Fail - fork seals leaking
  4. Shocks - Pass
  5. Steering Head Bearings - Pass
  6. Front Wheel Bearings - Fail - done
  7. Rear Wheel Bearings - Pass
  8. Front Tire - Pass
  9. Rear Tire - Pass
  10. Clutch Lever - Fail - Missing bushing on mount
  11. Brake Lever/Peddle - Pass
  12. Hydraulics - Fail - Front brake line chewed up
  13. Front Brakes -  Fail - Cotter pin as pad pin
  14. Rear Brakes - Fail - Rotor worn out
  15. Front Rim - Pass
  16. Rear Rim - Pass
  17. Front Fender - Pass
  18. Rear Fender - Pass
  19. Cooling System - (they forgot to input) - Not leaking but both rad's are damaged
  20. Seat - Pass
  21. Handlebars - Pass
  22. Grips - Pass - Ripped a little
  23. Cables - Fail - Clutch good, throttle good, hot start broken
  24. Throttle - Pass
  25. Foot Rests - Pass
  26. Engine Stop - Pass
  27. Wiring - Pass
  28. Fuel Tank - Pass - Insert for fairing ripped out
  29. Final Drive/Chain - Fail - Worn out
  30. Exhaust - Pass
  31. Fluid Leaks - Fail - Valve cover leaking, engine plug's have no o-rings
  32. Test Drive/State of Tuning - Pass - 2% leak down, need's some carb tuning but runs ok, valves are a bit noisy

 

I obviously have to do some work but its not as bad as I thought it might be. I believe I can do most of this myself pretty easily. The mechanic I was talking to wasn't helpful at all. He seemed irritated with all my questions and gave me short bull shit answers to get me out. So I have a few questions for you guys.

 

1. Is the hot start needed? Will I get stranded on the track or on the trails without it?

2. What fairing insert on the fuel tank is he talking about and what is its purpose? Is it needed?

3. Is the valve cover leaking critical or can it be ridden with the leak?

4. What engine plug o-rings might he be talking about?

5. What % would be a fail on a leak down test?

6. What does it mean if the "valves are a bit noisy" and what needs to be done?

 

Thanks

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1. Hot start opens a passage in the carburetor to lean out the idle mixture to help when restarting a hot engine. Not a necessity as you don't even need it every time. You can basically accomplish the same thing by cracking the throttle while kicking. Some bikes can kick back by doing this (definately my XR600 would) but I haven't had this bike do it but still be wary of it.

2. I'm guessing they're talking about the brass inserts molded in the tank the radiator shroud screws thread into. Don't know about your 07 but my 03 has 3 on each shroud so not really a show stopper by any means. More of an appearance / detail thing.

3. Unless the valve cover is absolutely pouring you could ride it. If it's just a little leak that's attracting dirt / dust not a huge deal but if you can see oil running down the head then that would need to be fixed before riding.

4. I'm guessing the plugs on the lower left of the engine on the stator cover are what he's talking about. Them missing the o-rings could also cause oil leaks and depending on where you're riding could let water in the engine if you're in it deep enough.

5. 2% leak down is excellent. Nothing to worry about there.

6. I don't know about noisy valves as either myself or I don't think anyone else on here has had valves get looser by any great amount. The usual method of failure is the hard coating wears through and then the softer titanium valve wears rapidly and valve clearance closes up usually leading to hard starting as one of the first symptoms. Most of the time the center intake valve is the first one to go. Clay

Edited by nuity5
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You could take the head off to check out the valves and also peek into the combustion chamber to see what it looks like.

The valves should be easy to see if they're worn or starting to cup.

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Glad to hear the good news you got from the mechanic, all of that stuff seems pretty simple when you consider the age of the bike and none of it sounds like an absolute emergency to get fixed. I would definitely get the hot start fixed these bikes can be a little finicky to start once warmed up especially after they have stalled. I haven't ran into the problem myself but apparently there is a little plastic part where your hot start cable enters your motor that is prone to breaking. The replacement part is very cheap and should be fairly simple to fix. I am sure a search on these forums would be able to tell you what I am talking about, like I said I have not encountered the problem but have read about it happening numerous times. As far as the leak goes as others have said unless it is pouring I would not be too concerned but I would probably look into ordering a new seal (again very inexpensive and simple to install). I am not sure whereabouts in Alberta you are from but I have found that ordering OEM parts from dealerships in the Edmonton area can get very pricey and the waits can be ridiculously long. I order from motosport.com, they ship quickly and cheaply to Canada and have basically every OEM part you could ever ask for.

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I appreciate the answers and advice. I will be doing my forks first as they are leaking quite badly and the front wheel bearings.

 

I'm up in Edmonton so if thats the case I will be ordering online. Thanks for the site Frecky B. If you know any other good sites for parts/tools let me know.

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As far as dealerships in the Edmonton area I can't say enough about how great Riverside Motorsports in St. Albert is (generally go there if I need something faster than I can get it online), another great website I have ordered parts off of for my 250 is canadasmotorcycle.ca they don't have quite the same selection as motosport but they have the basics and the shipping is fast and customer service is great.

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