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2015 CRF 150R

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Good morning, I had a couple questions about a 2015 CRF 150 our. I'm looking at purchasing a 2015 CRF 150R for my son and this will be his first race bike. The owner was the original owner and said that it wasn't written but about 30 to 40 hours and was only ridden around the farm never raced. I would like to know what I need to watch out for on this bike. Its looks like It's incredibly clean and it looks like It has been well maintained. My boy is coming off a KLX 110 L. My boy said he wanted a t0 2 stroke. I moved into a KX 65 which was actually smaller (so he could get the feel of a 2 stroke) but he did not like the erratic nature of the two-stroke power band, and sold it after three weeks. I've been going back and forth back and forth depending on which bike to get him and I think I'm going to settle in on at 150R. He loves the four stroke power delivery however wants adjustable suspensions since he likes to jump. Any other recommendations and anything else I should know before purchasing this bike in a couple days?

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Stock ones are very reliable, just keep the air filter clean and change the engine oil frequently.  Then the valves should last a long time.

Very loud (IMO stupid loud for a kid's bike).  Check the engine oil before every ride.  Jetting can be tricky, try a #45 pilot jet if you have starting issues.


From mlatour, comparing to a 150F (i don't know how to quote to another thread):


A few considerations if you're going to trail and off-road a CRF150R :


-designed as a motocross race bike, meaning the engine has more emphasis on upper rpm power,

your CRF150F has more off idle grunt for slow tricky situations, the 150R may require clutching skills in certain situations.


-close ratio gearbox again for MX racing, meaning a tall 1st gear (may feel like starting off in 2nd on your 150F)

and relatively short 5th gear, meaning higher rpms when ridden at high speeds.


-suspension is also set up for jumping and high speed maneuvers, stiff settings aren't ideal for general off-roading.


-liquid cooled engines / radiators require constant airflow, if riding too slow it may overheat (bad for the engine)

oppositely your current 150F can sit and idle at a standstill all day long.

Radiators and water pump can also get damaged in a crash, expensive to repair and can leave you stranded.


-150R's are loud, a consideration if you ride near populated areas and don't want to attract unwanted attention.

-limited fuel capacity and range. The 150R has a small tank, no reserve on the petcock and, uses up gas faster than your 150F.


Maintenance, incomparable as the 150R requires periodic valvetrain inspection, adjustments, more frequent oil changes.

A 150F is as bulletproof, low maintenance and low cost of operation as is gets.


Yes a CRF150R/RB can be trail ridden, your usage does include homemade tracks (berms, jumps?) so even better suited but,

it has some considerations versus a true trail/off-road bike which you have to live with.


Also depends on your size, if you are already taller than 5'2" the 150R (small wheel) is already too small for you,

above 5'6" on an 150RB (big wheels), again the bike is already a tad too small for you.

Anywhere over 5'6" and you should rather be considering a full-sized bike with 21" & 18"-19" wheels.


Edited November 2 by mlatour

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Shopping for a used high performance 4-stroke race bike,

even if used for trail / riding around the farm and with low hours I'd be just as concerned about neglected maintenance,

moreso perhaps than a bike that was track ridden and owner knows the consequences of stretching oil changes and valvetrain inspections/adjustments.


As much a motocross riding is harder on the engine, the risk of overheating a greater if trail ridden.


With no past maintenance records of engine work/refurb, I'd check 3 things very carefully :


-air filter; if it's caked up, torn, mis-installed (not sealing well around the rim), dry (not oiled evenly)

-engine oil color/texture  (black, gritty, signs of coolant, moisture 'milkshake')

-remove the radiator cap, start the engine (cold) and observe for excessive bubbles which may indicate a blown head gasket

(some bubbles are normal at initial start up, after a while they should diminish, not increase)


A used performance 4-stroke is always a gamble, if any of the above are questionable it's enough to consider walking away.


Depending how tall your boy is (also taking in consideration how fast he's growing)

at about the same size as a CRF150R but with increased torque versus that KX65,

a Kawasaki KX100 could be a nice alternative and more importantly, easier and cheaper to maintain.

Edited by mlatour
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Thank you for the responses! We are going to check out the bike tomorrow. I will check these things out. As for as Checking valve specs, what are the intervals? I heard 30-40 hours, others say 50-60. My concern is the adjustability of the bike set up. With the 150 R, I can adjust the sag etc, where the f, the suspension isn't as adjustable. 

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A friend of mine has a CRF150R which I occasionally work on so I always

keep a .pdf version of the Honda owner's manual in my computer files.


It mentions checking the valve clearances every 15 hours or 6 races. (racing usage)

At 15h it also suggests replacing: engine oil & filter, gearbox lube, piston and ring)

In a recreational usage you could stretch that out the intervals but if racing,

perhaps a gamble depending how hard the rider pushes the engine.


Keep in mind that once valve clearance start closing up within a few hours of use,

by the time you've re-adjusted them twice, it's sign you are soon due for a valvetrain refurb.


Versus a simple and bulletproof KLX110 trail bike, nothing will compare maintenance wise on a 4-stroke race bike,

reason I'd try to convince you son to try a 2-stroke again.

The added torque of increased engine displacement (a KX85 or KX100) versus the 65 he's already ridden

and the addition of a flywheel weight could make the learning curve much easier.

Edited by mlatour

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