TheBavarian

New owner 1997 RMX250V: General info, manual and aftermarket protection (WA, USA)

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Posted (edited)

Hey y'all,

Just picked up a 97 RMX250V a couple of weeks ago. Located in Washington state. Bike is super clean, well taken care off and runs great as far as I can tell. 

I'm looking for more info on the bike. My other bike is a DR650 for which there's a ton of content online here, at drriders.com and the thread on advrider. For the RMX I didn't have much luck yet. Any resources you can recommend for new owners?

I am also looking to get a pdf or printed version of a service manual. Ebay has some printed versions of the owner manual. Any ideas where I could get a Clymer Manual for a 97? Ebay only list Clymer for RMX 89-95.

Also, I'd like to add some extra protection for trail riding. I'm planning to add generic hang guards and pipe guard from Tusk. For skid plate and radiator guards I'm not sure where to get parts that fit. Any recommendations for skid plate or radiator guards for a 97 RMX250V or a list of aftermarket parts in general?

Appreciate any info/advice.

Thanks!

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Edited by TheBavarian
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Posted (edited)

lol. I almost bought that bike the first time I saw it on CL. Welcome to TT.  Cool to see you on here!!!

 

Good bikes. I’ve got two. First thing you should do is a immediate top end inspection. These bikes are notorious for Power valve problems. Good idea to replace piston and rings while your in there and get the optional 1.2 head gasket.  

Don’t waste your money on a Clymer. There’s a OEM Service manual for 96 here;

https://mega.nz/#!3FkTzRDS!EFqE9tzdU9BjByRn0ymw3605UvQGoeLg6Xj4chXIH4Y

Only thing that changed from 96-98 was seat cover and shroud color.

The Ricochet skid plates are pretty nice. Requires the factory case guard to be removed. Installing one on my 96.

https://m.ebay.com/itm/Ricochet-Skid-Plate-Suzuki-RMX250/221981906338?varId=520858755354&_mwBanner=1

Edited by Jeremyf1
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Hi Jeremy.

Awesome! Thanks very much for the info and link.

I downloaded the pdf manual. I thought another difference was that 96 had the inverted forks and in 97 & 98 they went back to conventional forks?

Any idea if there are aftermarket radiator guards that might fight the RMX? I'd like to have some protection against side impacts when riding trails here in the PNW. Or would I have to fabricate some myself?

I'll also try to inspect the top end and PV soon 

 

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No problem :thumbsup:

The 95’s were the last year for the Inverted forks. All the kinks hadn’t been worked out, so Suzuki went back to the conventionals in 96. 

I know there are/were radiator guards available. Not sure who made them though. Both my RMXs’ are hopped up, so I need as much airflow through the radiators as possible to keep them cool. 

 

The Power Valves inspection is something you’ll want to do right away. It’s one of those “spend a little now, or a LOT later” situations. Mainly it’s the retaining screws and secondary PV nuts that come loose. My 98 when I bought in ‘00 with 20 hrs. and my 96 both had the PV nuts loose and were grinding away on the rings. The 96 was a bit worse. That one had ALL the screws loose, which allowed the secondary PV springs to migrate to the trans and get ground up by the gears. 

 

This is is what you don’t want to see.  lol  

9BBFC460-C025-4DF0-B4A5-3DDD746313DF.jpeg.9da368ebe559e127e2d113fca48a3636.jpeg

A little loc-tite goes a long way....

 

PS. There are aftermarket Chinese radiators on eBay for about $140. OEM rads are unavailable. If yours are mint, you might want to go with the china rads and keep your OEM off to the side looking new. 

Edited by Jeremyf1
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Thanks!
Yeah I need to read up on the service manual figure out the PV.

Just to check if all the power valve screws and nuts are tightened, is it enough to just remove the PV inspection cover or will I have to take apart the whole top end?

 

Also, do you know what the RMX specs for a compression test are?

Edited by TheBavarian

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There’s not much room to get a screwdriver on those top PV cover screws, which reminds me. Be sure to use JIS (Japanese industrial standard) drivers on the screws. Regular philips has a tendency to screw up the tops. 

Even if there’re not loose yet I’d still remove them all, Thoroughly clean threads, and loc-tite them all anyway. Regular blue screw strength is fine for the screws, but the PV nuts use a high temp-high strength threadlocker. I found the backside of a old sawzall blade in a vice works great for holding the round castle nuts. 

You could pull the entire cylinder, leaving the head on to save yourself on buying a head gasket. Another thing i just thought of is the OEM pistons do not have the exhaust bridge lubricating holes. Even if you don’t end up replacing piston, I do recommend to go ahead and drill the lube holes in piston skirt. Rings and cylinder will last much longer. 

Edit;

I actually don’t know the PSI for stock engine. Guessing I’d say 160 with stock head gasket and around 180 with optional gasket. Both mine have modified heads and much higher compression. I do know that 245 is a bit too much. Ha ha. Mine are around 215-225 now. 

Edited by Jeremyf1
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Couple more tidbits of info. 

If you don’t have a propane torch, get one. 

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The setscrew that holds the “arm” on PV shaft IS loc-tited from the factory. I cracked it on my 98 before knowing this. Heat it up good till you begin to get some smoke off the arm from the oil residue, and it will come right off. You won’t be able to get a driver on the lower guide retaining screws till the shaft has been removed. 

Heat also helps for getting the castle nuts off the secondary valves. Oil gets in the threads and gives a false sense that they’re tight, when really they’re just stuck in place with hardened sticky goo. 

Also keep in mind that the Allen bolts that goes through the secondary PVs is threaded into the valve itself, then castle nut is tightened over that. 

Not a bad idea to buy a new rod clip (#38)

These are made of nylon and get brittle with age. 

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Great! Thanks very much for the additional info and detailed description!

I'll try to get this done asap and report back and post some pics what the PV and piston looked like

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Hopefully you’ll open her up and find nothing rattled loose yet. I know opening up the top end on a bike you JUST got is probably not high on your list of things to do. lol.

You should be able to get a decent look at your piston by looking up the exhaust port with pipe off. If it looks really good you could just get away with new rings, and new cir-clips if you remove piston to drill the bridge lube holes. 

Heat is definitely your friend for getting the gummed up screws out on these if they are still tight. 

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