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are 450's becoming the norm for general/leisure riding?

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After buying my first brand spanking new KTM 450SX-F i asked myself....are 450's becoming the norm for general riding? I myself don't race as much as i'd like to (getting there) and the guys i do ride with favor big bore bikes over the smaller bore bikes. I see a lot of kids and younger people going out and buying 450's thinking a 250 is way to small and "won't go fast enough" I think that people who have spent years on bikes and have built their way up from say a 250-350-300-400 and then a 450. Going right to a 450 sounds crazy and is just way to much ego coming through. Don't want to look like a wimp buying a 250.....Now for those who are heavier, more experienced and need/require more power i say...all the power to you for buying that 450. I myself have also bought one so i can't count myself out of this. I think they should do that, if you're from that bracket where you are good enough/reasonable enough to use a 450 then like i said. Go for it.  But going out and trying to use 450 power when you reallly really need 250/300/350 power is a game i see way to often in the trail system. 

 

 

What do you guys think? are 450 and general big bore bikes becoming the main choice for people when they step into the sport or do you see the opposite? I myself didn't jump to a 450 until i could ride a 250/250 two stroke and 350 thumper BEFORE even ever considering a 450. 

 

 

thoughts?  

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A 250/300 is the perfect size for a trail bike.  I'm 6', 205 lbs. and my 250 has more than enough power.  It is more maneuverable and has more manageable power than most of the 450s that are out there.  The smart money is on the mid sized bikes for trail work.  I've owned a 500 and currently also have a 400, the 250 is where its at. 😉

Edited by cjjeepercreeper
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4 minutes ago, cjjeepercreeper said:

A 250/300 is the perfect size for a trail bike.  I'm 6', 205 lbs. and my 250 has more than enough power.  It is more maneuverable and has more manageable power than most of the 450s that are out there.  The smart money is on the mid sized bikes for trail work.  I've owned a 500 and currently also have a 400, the 250 is where its at. 😉

I respect that, i know a few guys that can ride 250's better than a lot of 450 guys...but then again. I don't care how fast you can ride. As long as you're riding 😉

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I started racing on 125.  Went three beginner all the way to 125B class whitch is now 250B. Then 250 twostrokes for over 10 years made my way to A class raced against 450's with good success.  Unless long uphills or up hill starts. But as a  B rider didn't have so much of disadvantage as when I was expert racing against 450s. And still did well.  Now tho I don't race as much but favor a feuly 450 hits hard down low and pull is unmatched in experienced hands. I see guys and kids on them as starter bikes and never agree with it. I think everyone should start on 125 twostrokes.  Master that then move up. That's how I was tought anyway.  :ride: nothing like running a 250 twostroke to its max. 450 is easier im getting older lol. Haven't raced mx in few years ,can still get it tho just don't push as hard ."Ride safe":ride: Actually I raced a cr500 for first year at 16yo. But don't count that lol was way to much out of control mostly.  Switched to 125 and was winning in couple races

Edited by Motox367
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1 minute ago, Motox367 said:

I started racing on 125.  Went three beginner all the way to 125B class whitch is now 250B. Then 250 twostrokes for over 10 years made my way to A class raced against 450's with good success.  Unless long uphills or up hill starts. But as a  B rider didn't have so much of disadvantage as when I was exspert racing against 450s. And still did well.  Now tho I don't race as much but favor a 450. I see guys and kids on them as starter bikes and never agree with it. I think everyone should start on 125 twostrokes.  Master that then move up. That's how I was tought anyway.  :ride: nothing like running a 250 twostroke to its max. 450 is easier in getting older lol

I agree, i think everyone should learn how to ride a two stroke first. Riding a 4 banger gets easy and makes you lazy. You need to learn how the ride with some sort of exercise :D

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Years ago when I worked at bike dealerships we would see guys buying big bikes, both street and dirt, as their first bike.  They usually came back wrecked.

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2 minutes ago, TomTopDog12 said:

I agree, i think everyone should learn how to ride a two stroke first. Riding a 4 banger gets easy and makes you lazy. You need to learn how the ride with some sort of exercise :D

I had to be in tiptop shape to compete on my 250 twostrokes.  Plus I'm 6' 220 so was extra hard to stay at that level.  

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I've been riding since the early 70s, street and dirt.  My next bike, when I get around to buying one, will be a WR250, a YZ250FX or a Honda CRF250X (if Honda ever gets around to putting FI in the Xs.)

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Just now, Motox367 said:

I had to be in tiptop shape to compete on my 250 twostrokes.  Plus I'm 6' 220 so was extra hard to stay at that level.  

I agree, even now with me riding i have to stay in some sort of shape that isn't round to be some what good at non-racing riding lol. 

Just now, cjjeepercreeper said:

I've been riding since the early 70s, street and dirt.  My next bike, when I get around to buying one, will be a WR250, a YZ250FX or a Honda CRF250X (if Honda ever gets around to putting FI in the Xs.)

The x's are really good, i've ridden one before and they are so smooth. good on gas too

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Dirtbikes are great exercise for any age for sure. I recently rode a modern 250f and could not believe that thing.  Was impressive.  Now I know why everyone switched from 125s.  Could be the ultimate bike at anything I think 

Edited by Motox367
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I guess it depends on what sport or terrain you're riding in. On the lesser-known, technical singletrack that only the locals ride, 300 2strokes are the most common bikes. Go to one of the more popular public riding areas with easier trails and 450 offroad bikes are super-popular. If I go to the mx track, lot's of 450's and a few 250f's...don't see a lot of 2 strokes out there. 

 

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I started out on a pig tw200 since my dad had no idea what bike to buy for an 11 year old that was already too big for an 80 2t. Went from that to an RM125 and when I got tires of doing a top end every other ride went to an 01wr250f to YZ400 to my current bike YZ450. I ride 95% trails and at 6'1" 245lbs it works great for me. I admit on the real tight stuff I sometimes wish I had a 250f again but when I get to a nice steep loamy hill climb I love that pulling power of my 450.

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Yep the American gotta have the biggest ego thing runs strong. Gotta have a 450 or you ain't riding, &%$#@!. I do have a 450 but it isn't for ego, or because I needed the power. It was because I got a good deal on it, and I refuse to buy a 250 4t, way too much maintenance and cost there. The 450 is there because it is cheaper for me to own. But I still don't care too much if it had to be gone, as long as I had 250 2 stroke, that's just about all I want and need. I don't understand the 250 2t is harder to ride than a 450 4t thing? I find the 2 t easier. Unless you're so out of shape you can't move your shifter foot a little extra and your index finger

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Assuming a certain maturity...

I see no disadvantage to a bigger, more powerful bike, other than weight.

The power you control with the wrist. You can't do much about the weight.

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I often ride 125 two strokes 250 two strokes as well as 250 four strokes.   I always find myself longing for the plush leisure of my trusty crf450r. Add a rekluse clutch and an electric start and it's heaven on a cracker.  I have absolutely zero desire to play gearbox maestro while flitting the clutch to stay in the two stroke happy place...you know that fleeting second when all of the cogs in the box line up for that moment when lightening strikes and the tourque curve lifts us to nirvana.  Yeah been there done that.   Now I sit comfortable on my throne of power and laziness letting my auto clutch do the work while I giddily bounce along a tourque curve that serves my every whim.   Yes I admit I worship and refuse to stall in the ocean of the modern 450.   Bring it on baby!!!

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Totally depends on your riding style, terrain and what you want to achieve. I started on a z50 at age 7, then yz80 after that & progressed to a 91 cr250r had xr200 wr250f, ktm300 ktm350 and now WR450F. They all had good & "not so good points". I hate the lack of engine braking on 2 strokes... I find 250f's fine until you ride soft sand or big hills & long straights or maze paddocks. Each to their own... I've heard 300, 2 stroke owners say they are better because they are lighter... but watched these guys, and see them fail to keep up with me in all conditions... or get knocked off the same way it happens to all of us "when it happens" anyway. 

Maybe some people are faster because the bikes lighter, but there will always be a faster rider anyway... Is weight really that noticeable on a well balanced bike? Only when pushing them on a trailer or truck deck. If the bikes lighter, I ride it harder and go home with the same amount of aches & pain anyway.  

300, 2 stroke. Good for Enduro racing, light weight riders, general trail bike if you don't like maintenance.

350 4 stroke. Good if you have money to buy a decent one otherwise maintenance is much the same as the 250f anyway. Good Power & weight. Nice with engine braking.

450+ 4 stroke. Good for heavy riders, lazy riders who can't be bothered hooking gears all the time "cause you don't have to". Likes wheel stands and just ripping through any terrain without much power loss. Maybe those adventure riders, who don't want an 1190cc hippo but an agile adventure bike. Trail rides with the ability to chug around or blast it for short bursts, otherwise you will likely get tired.

I ride a WR450F wide ratio enduro, and have had from new, because it was dealer cost, having sat 5 years in the showroom un-touched. I'm heavy 90kgs but still fit enough. I can handle the power and weight without feeling the bike drains me out to much.  I love engine braking. Like the longer life expectancy of larger bore (less stressed) engines. And I can do sick wheelies compared to all my other bikes I've owned. To be fair, the WR is tame for a 450 and I doubt i would enjoy trail riding a race tuned 450 moto cross bike for what i do. 

Yes i could ride my ktm300, ktm350 and wr250f faster for longer perhaps, but the 450 gives me the biggest smile and is the most fun of bikes I've owned.

Edited by surfez

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What? You guys prefer a 4 cylinder civic compared to a v8 mustang?
For the average rider more power more fun, weather you can handle it or not. I would always pic a 450 over 250 just for the thrill factor.

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Years ago when I worked at bike dealerships we would see guys buying big bikes, both street and dirt, as their first bike.  They usually came back wrecked.


I worked at a Kawi dealer in my teens. I remember a guy trading in his Ninja 500( which everyone knows is not a real Ninja ) and buying a brand new ZX-12. He had a year of riding experience. This was on a Thursday. Friday was a holiday. Saturday morning he showed up, bike on a flatbed, totalled. Bike had 13.7km on it. Which means he most likely crashed within a few minutes of the dealership, Thursday night. Brand new tires, jumped on the gas around a corner, wrapped the bike around a guardrail.

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I grew up in socal and most of my friends who I rode desert and/or mx with all had 450s. A 450 in glamis is almost a must, I know people will disagree but in general. Pala, barona, milestone, etc. on a 450 is still a lot of fun too. Now that I live in KY where its all woods and the mx tracks are small the biggest bore bike I ever see is a 250 smoker. Everyone out here has 250f.

Edited by motodavermz450

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Real men ride small bores.  Line up at a hare scramble in the open class on a 200cc 2 stroke, you will quickly see that most of those guys are very out of shape, or just can't ride very well.   The ones that can don't need the power, but they want it.

I'd be willing to bet none of us "need" the power a 450 has, or can ride our current bikes to their potential.  Jus usually guys who don't like to shift.

All the guys that ride at our club track on 450's are out of shape, and like mentioned above are lazy riders.  They can go fast, but only for a few laps at a time.    

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