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New Rider - Advice Needed

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Hey All. 

I'm new to maintaining my Honda 150R.  I'm not a skilled mechanic or mechanically inclined in the slightest. 

I'm reading the manual and looking up videos to get a grasp of regular maintenance and what to expect from this bike.  I don't have  garage but I have a storage unit with some basically tools and a little teeny bit of space to work.  

I'm hoping this group has some advice:

1.  What are some good, routine maintenance schedules or tips?  Outside of the manual, what's been your experience and best routines? 

2.  Is there anything I should know about the bike?  Things to look out for, common issues (i.g. over heating) or best practices? 

I know I can look at the owner's manual and youtube video.  Just looking for as much info or insight as possible from actual riders.

 

Also, is this bike ok to ride on trails, legally?  It seems like it's limited to track but I've definitely ridden in the desert.  I'm in CO now if that matters.

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Hey Everyone.  I'm cross posting this from the Honda forum.  Not a lot of traction there so I figured I would post here.

I'm new to being responsible for the regular maintenance of my Honda 150R.  I'm not very mechanically inclined or handy but I'm a relatively intelligent and determined human.  I can read, have access to the internet, and have some tools.  I have done some work before on bikes-- changed batteries, removed carburetors, oil changes, cleaned air filter, replaced a turn signal. 

I would say of 97% of the work I've done, I'm only 30% sure I did it correctly.


So, that's my skill level.  With that in mind, I'm reading through the bike manual to get a better grasp on what's happening.  I'm looking for some real world advice on best practices.  What should I be doing, what should I avoid?  Generally, what are your top 3 things when it comes to dirt bike maintenance?  Hoping to grab as many lessons learned as possible.  A lot of posts are pretty problem specific. 

Any advice would be great. 

Edit:  I have a 2009 Honda 150R.  

Edited by b_kimiko

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You did yourself a big favor by getting a manual. Your next biggest help will be forums and youtube vids. Having never worked on a 4 stroke MX bike I have no idea if the trans and engine oil are shared or separated and if it has an oil filter. All things that should be in your manual. As for the main stuff like changing oil, air filter cleaning, making sure all the bolts are tight, nothing looks out of place/broken, etc. theres not much else. Oil is as simple as warming the bike up. Draining the oil. Putting new oil in. Changing filter if you need to and thats it. Air filter cleaning/oiling is just cleaning the filter then oiling( so many tutorials on this). And then just checking over your bike. Making sure the chain isn't too tight or loose, air pressure in tires, nothings leaking ( oil, fuel ), spoke tightening( personally never bothered with this as long as your spokes are tight ). And thats about it. Just search around on TT if you have a question and if you don't find an answer then just ask it on your thread.

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Make sure you have a proper air filter process (oil, grease at contact surface). Change your oil. Keep your valves in tolerance. Ride the wheels off. There are a lot of other items that will wear that you will figure out as you go like chain/sprocket (replace together), tires, bearings, etc. One thing to keep up on if you ride off road (think creek crossings) is your linkage/swingarm bearings. I like to have mine apart once a year to grease and inspect. I don't know that bike but it will have its own idiosyncrasies you will learn about with time.

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Like @mikea 2 said, the most important thing is air filter on that bike.  My wife as ridden one for many years and I've ridden crfs since the very first ones were made.  Always be sure to stick your hand way down in there and run your fingers around the edge of the air filter to be sure it seated correctly with no gaps at the bottom.  Also... If you run the bike hard banging it off the rev limiter all the time check your valve clearance per the manual every 50 hours.  If you're just cruzin' I've found the valves will stay in spec for 100 hours.  The better job you do at maintaining the air filter, the longer the valves will last.

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Key to four stroke mx bikes like every one else has said clean air filter and oil if you race id at least clean the air filter after every race make get a extra filter so that your getting the old one off and putting a freshly oiled clean one then with oil change the oil every other race and oil filter every other time and keep a check on those valves really easy but be sure to follow your manual step by step and take your time measure twice. If you dont race the oil changes can very but i would get a hour meter so you can keep up with time on motor to know when to change oil. But good maintance will go a long way in the bikes life and help avoid costly fixes but other than that ride the wheels off of it and have fun

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If you only ride trails, and you aren't running at 10,000 rpm all day long, maintenance intervals can be stretched considerably, but not indefinitely. Do get an hour meter and do take care when installing the air filter.

In Colorado you will need an OHV permit: http://cpw.state.co.us/buyapply/Pages/RegistrationsOHV.aspx You will also need a spark arrester. You'll need to Google that, because there are several options, from replacing the muffler end cap to whole aftermarket mufflers. Some people have even adapted CRF250X cans to get both the spark arrester and to quiet the engine down considerably. The pinned thread "Too Loud for Me" at the top of this forum has at least one example of this.

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If you ride trails, don't let the engine get hot & overheat.

When waiting up for friends, don't idle, shut it off.

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Welcome b_kimiko to one of the BEST MX Forums to mankind!! These r awesome bikes. i've owned over 10 of them. You r doing the right thing by asking for input. My 2 cents... it is a good idea to lube the top and bottom steering stem bearings. When they are assembled at the manufacture they put very little grease in this area. A good indication of a valve adjustment is if the bike takes 4 or 5 kicks to start. Start the bike up at a minimum of every 4 weeks. This will prevent Carb problems. Making sure the chain isn't too tight. With the bike on a stand I have 2 1/2 finger from the bottom of the chain to the top of the chain guide ( where the chain guide mounts to the top of the swingarm), air pressure in tires 12-15 psi. Make sure u Check your oil frequently. These bikes take very little oil and burn oil after approx. 4 hours of riding. To check the oil make sure you don't screw in the dip stick. This will give you a false reading. Just set the dip stick in and pull it out. Let it Rip!!

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Here's the best advice, replace what breaks and never buy cheap parts.

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