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Goatse

The true 250 vs 300 comparison.

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When I bought my Beta 250RR in 2017, my plan was actually to ride it for a season, get used to it, then go with Beta's 300 'upgrade' kit they sold for $1000. You see endless threads on "Which should I buy? 250 vs 300", but I enjoy learning from first hand experiences. I figured what better way to learn (know) which one is better, than to have both on the EXACT same bike. Same suspension settings, same springs, same absolutely everything except 250 vs 300. But shortly after buying the bike, they stopped offering the kit and the cost to get everything separate was a harder pill to swallow.

 

So I rode the 250 for a bit in stock form, then at 40 ish hours I put an RK Tek head on it. That definitely helped the bike out, and I put north of 100 more hours on that setup. It was time for a top end, so I again started considering doing the 300 parts. But the thing was, that I absolutely loved my 250 now. The power delivery was superb and I was concerned I'd lose some of the snappy fun revving character the 250 has. The bike never lacked power, and I ride mainly in the mountains. So lots and lots of gnarly hill climbs.

 

But right when I was banging my head on if I wanted to spend that kind of money on something I wasn't even sure I'd like, I get a line on a 300 setup someone is selling. I really couldn't turn down the price, so I went with it. This is a full true blue 300 setup. Power valve parts, CDI, and even the power valve springs (the 300 spring is stiffer BTW).

 

I did the swap, and ride the bike around my neighbourhood (F'n hoodlum) and I was pretty disappointed. My lively, fun, snappy, Beta was now a marshmallow. No snap, no hit. Nothing of what I loved so much about the bike.

 

But then today I had my first real ride on it. And what more perfect than doing the loop that was the hardest race of 2018. Tons of ridiculous climbs, super tight trees, side hills, steep downhills, roots, rocks, just straight Gnar.

 

Well...

 

I didn't expect to like the 300 as much as I did. The test ride around the block I was pretty underwhelmed because it was so soft, and even the first bit of the ride I felt the same way. The bike was too mellow, and doesn't near have the snap my 250 with the RK head had. But the more I rode, the more I realized I didn't 'need' that snap like I did on the 250. With the added torque you can do the same things, but you don't need the RPM to do it. I started to realize things were just happening much more easily. Lugging the bike and I'm so used to needing to 'VWAAAAP" the throttle with clutch to get the bike over logs, up steep obstacles, double over roots, etc. But now just little "burbally-burbally" with the same clutch but far less throttle. The bike does the same things without needing to work so hard to do them. The damn thing is like cheating. Climbs? What climbs? The bike just tractors up them with no drama.

 

Yes, you can feel the extra effort required to steer the bike/change directions with the heavier piston, but TBH it was actually a plus in many scenarios. The bike seemed a touch more stable and just less skittish. It's still a 2 stroke, so it still changes direction quite easily, but the wee bit of stability is a welcome trade off for slightly heavier steering.

 

I've been saying for a while now, I'm a 250 guy... Apparently not though, because this 300 F'n ROCKS.

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Excellent write up! 

It's so funny how just a thing like riding lower in the rpms makes a significant difference! 

Letting the motor lug and get traction keeping the revs low is a very effective way to ride! 

 

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Damn, you did a great job of explaining exactly what I've discovered in the last 2 weeks of 300 ownership. Had a 12 ktm 300, went to 250s, fell in love with my 16 250 race ed with RK TEK head and vowed I'd never want another 300. Until the past 2 weeks. Don't get me wrong, I still love that 250 and don't plan on parting with it! It's still an amazing bike, but I hate to say it,  I'm digging the 300. I can honestly say, anyone trying to decide between the 2, you really won't be disappointed with either. 

 

20190101_090824.jpg

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Yea great description! 

Yea well I guess that’s why hard enduro is full of 2 stroke 300’s.  It’s why Ive given the edge to a 300. When I had my 250 I thought.. if I could have just a little more..

I still wish a good 350 or 400 2 stroke would be awesome.

.. and a 250 and 200 etc is awesome too. 

But if I have to pick one .. 300 is it

Edited by hawaiidirtrider

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Glad your a happy customer!  I kept that 300 kit on the shelf in case I changed my mind, and for resale, but I'm just a 250 guy and always have been.  Ride another newer 300 and you will see the difference I was talking about, how the '13 is a little more free reving feeling.  I liked it more than the newer bikes.  I suspect some of this may be due to the fairly tame compression, but there are porting differences as well.  So your on the mild side of the spectrum now.  If you do any combination of pulling the reed spacer, swapping the 250 CDI, and having the head modified, you move to the wild side.

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[mention=371503]NW_drZ[/mention]


Ya I saw this! Beta used to sell an upgrade kit. It appears they don’t anymore. I guess you could always hodge podge one together.

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While not apples to apples (beta to beta) I had similar feelings on a 250 vs 300cc. Last year I was still throwing a big heavy WR450 around. I saw the Yamaha YZ250X at MotoGP in Austin TX when there, and fell in love with the light weight of it. Was fairly sure that was going to be my next bike. Local friend bought one and I got a chance to ride it. While light, it did not have the low end grunt that I loved in my WR and I had serious concerns if it would be the bike for me. Talked to a lot of people, including my local dealer and all said the same about the 300RR- plenty of grunt and you won't be disappointed. Pulled the trigger, bought the 300RR for me and an Xtrainer for the wife. Only have a few hours on them but so far absolutely love them. 

 

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While not apples to apples (beta to beta) I had similar feelings on a 250 vs 300cc. Last year I was still throwing a big heavy WR450 around. I saw the Yamaha YZ250X at MotoGP in Austin TX when there, and fell in love with the light weight of it. Was fairly sure that was going to be my next bike. Local friend bought one and I got a chance to ride it. While light, it did not have the low end grunt that I loved in my WR and I had serious concerns if it would be the bike for me. Talked to a lot of people, including my local dealer and all said the same about the 300RR- plenty of grunt and you won't be disappointed. Pulled the trigger, bought the 300RR for me and an Xtrainer for the wife. Only have a few hours on them but so far absolutely love them. 
 

Funny you mention the wr 450
One of my best buddies used to do well A class Mx he was riding a wr 450 in the woods but he bought my 16 300 he’s much happier.

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Excellent write up! 
It's so funny how just a thing like riding lower in the rpms makes a significant difference! 
Letting the motor lug and get traction keeping the revs low is a very effective way to ride! 
 
Yeah, for the 250 to make the same torque it has to make more horsepower. So it's a touch more to hold on to when you're needing to get the engine spinning up more and the actual power is higher.
Damn, you did a great job of explaining exactly what I've discovered in the last 2 weeks of 300 ownership. Had a 12 ktm 300, went to 250s, fell in love with my 16 250 race ed with RK TEK head and vowed I'd never want another 300. Until the past 2 weeks. Don't get me wrong, I still love that 250 and don't plan on parting with it! It's still an amazing bike, but I hate to say it,  I'm digging the 300. I can honestly say, anyone trying to decide between the 2, you really won't be disappointed with either. 
 
20190101_090824.thumb.jpg.5b8d475f1a41b2492b53bc72774b24b0.jpg
While I did enjoy the hell out of it yesterday, I do imagine in certain terrain I really will miss it.

I guess my best way to put it, is the 250 is still a more fun and playful bike to ride. But when it comes to getting the job done efficiently, and with less work, I do feel the 300 (in hard terrain) has the edge. For leisure rides without anything super tough and higher speeds, I do still think I'd prefer the 250RR power delivery.
Glad your a happy customer!  I kept that 300 kit on the shelf in case I changed my mind, and for resale, but I'm just a 250 guy and always have been.  Ride another newer 300 and you will see the difference I was talking about, how the '13 is a little more free reving feeling.  I liked it more than the newer bikes.  I suspect some of this may be due to the fairly tame compression, but there are porting differences as well.  So your on the mild side of the spectrum now.  If you do any combination of pulling the reed spacer, swapping the 250 CDI, and having the head modified, you move to the wild side.
I am going to try both. I did enjoy the torque, but even if I could split down the middle the snap and the torque (lose half the torque to gain some snap back) I would gladly do it. The good thing is, I imagine I should be able to get the bike more lively without actually losing any torque. If this bike gets just a bit more angry off the bottom, it'll be Goldilocks and her perfect bowl of porridge.


Ya I saw this! Beta used to sell an upgrade kit. It appears they don’t anymore. I guess you could always hodge podge one together.
The best price I found was Steve at Plus One Performance. I think he did your forks.

I was honestly so close to pulling the trigger with Steve, and then GP messaged me out of nowhere. As I was reading the message I legitimately questioned if I was dreaming or not. How in the hell did he know I was on the verge of wanting a 300 setup? Was he reading my F'n emails or something? The timing was quite bazaar. Lol
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2 minutes ago, Goatse said:

I was honestly so close to pulling the trigger with Steve, and then GP messaged me out of nowhere. As I was reading the message I legitimately questioned if I was dreaming or not. How in the hell did he know I was on the verge of wanting a 300 setup? Was he reading my F'n emails or something? The timing was quite bazaar. Lol

For curiosity sakes, what was the price through Steve for the kit?

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For curiosity sakes, what was the price through Steve for the kit?
I don't know if Steve wants that stuff posted publically, so I'll let him answer that for you. :)
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3 minutes ago, Goatse said:

Yeah, for the 250 to make the same torque it has to make more horsepower. So it's a touch more to hold on to when you're needing to get the engine spinning up more and the actual power is higher. While I did enjoy the hell out of it yesterday, I do imagine in certain terrain I really will miss it.

I guess my best way to put it, is the 250 is still a more fun and playful bike to ride. But when it comes to getting the job done efficiently, and with less work, I do feel the 300 (in hard terrain) has the edge. For leisure rides without anything super tough and higher speeds, I do still think I'd prefer the 250RR power delivery. I am going to try both. I did enjoy the torque, but even if I could split down the middle the snap and the torque (lose half the torque to gain some snap back) I would gladly do it. The good thing is, I imagine I should be able to get the bike more lively without actually losing any torque. If this bike gets just a bit more angry off the bottom, it'll be Goldilocks and her perfect bowl of porridge. The best price I found was Steve at Plus One Performance. I think he did your forks.

I was honestly so close to pulling the trigger with Steve, and then GP messaged me out of nowhere. As I was reading the message I legitimately questioned if I was dreaming or not. How in the hell did he know I was on the verge of wanting a 300 setup? Was he reading my F'n emails or something? The timing was quite bazaar. Lol

Hacking skills.😀

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3 minutes ago, NW_drZ said:

For curiosity sakes, what was the price through Steve for the kit?

Now, now.  As a recovering Reklusaholic you should spend more time on a full manual clutch before falling off the 250 wagon.🤣 

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7 minutes ago, Goatse said:

I don't know if Steve wants that stuff posted publically, so I'll let him answer that for you. :)

Fair enough, I probably should of asked through PM or directly contacting him.. It was more for curiosity sakes however.  

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3 minutes ago, GP said:

Now, now.  As a recovering Reklusaholic you should spend more time on a full manual clutch before falling off the 250 wagon.🤣 

Ya im all over the place right now haha.. I could barely sleep last night as I kept contemplating the next thing I need to do to get the bike where I want ;)

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16 hours ago, Goatse said:

I did the swap, and ride the bike around my neighborhood (F'n hoodlum) and I was pretty disappointed. My lively, fun, snappy, Beta was now a marshmallow. No snap, no hit. Nothing of what I loved so much about the bike.

First thing I noticed riding the 300 around the yard; no top-end hit like a 2t is supposed to have.

16 hours ago, Goatse said:

I've been saying for a while now, I'm a 250 guy... Apparently not though, because this 300 F'n ROCKS.

My 300 was in the garage before Demo Days. First bike I rode at the Demo was the 250. "Get used to the lack of top like this 250" I thought peeling through the gate, around the first two corners and up Horsepower Hill.

16 hours ago, Goatse said:

Lugging the bike and I'm so used to needing to 'VWAAAAP" the throttle with clutch to get the bike over logs, up steep obstacles, double over roots, etc. But now just little "burbally-burbally" with the same clutch but far less throttle.

Yep, then I got out in the deep gnar and found the bike would 'magically' move forward like nothing I'd ridden before! :banana:

Would I be happy with the 250? Of course!

Do I regret the 300? Never!

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Ya im all over the place right now haha.. I could barely sleep last night as I kept contemplating the next thing I need to do to get the bike where I want default_wink.gif
Are you back on a manual clutch?

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1 minute ago, NW_drZ said:

Ya im all over the place right now haha.. I could barely sleep last night as I kept contemplating the next thing I need to do to get the bike where I want ;)

I was just joking around but seriously get the head cut properly.  Steve did your forks right?  Get the shock done to match the forks and ride it more.   The suspension is so much more important than any motor work at your (and my) level. 

My neighbor's young son is 9, and that kid goes where we do on a CRF 80!  Were all amazed and call him "Little Jarvis" the way he can pop the little bike up and over big stuff.  He has less low end than us!

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4 minutes ago, Goatse said:

Are you back on a manual clutch?

Ive been toying with the idea of getting the rekluse manual pressure plate so I can keep the nice rekluse components and swap between the 2 with ease.  Id also get 3 of their medium clutch plate springs to match the current 3 med and remove the 3 heavy on the auto.  Basically to lighten the clutch pull.  My biggest gripe when I got the Beta new was how much harder the clutch pull was than the KTM and huskies.  So to answer your question, no I'm still on the auto but I have really been contemplating getting the manual setup.  

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