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32 year layoff. Should I even bother?

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It’s true, KTM parts are more expensive. I just looked up a Vortex top end kit for a 2015 YZ 250 two stroke at Motorsport... $150. The Vortex top end hit for a 2015 KTM 250 XCW is $188.

To me $33 isn’t going to affect which bike I buy.

There is a serious anti KTM vibe on this forum, which is weird considering that KTM has been dominating in the last few years. Pick up a Dirt Bike action or Motocross Action magazine subscription, or look at what the top off-road riders in the world are riding.

The YZX and XCW are focused for off-road riding with wider ratio transmissions and heavier flywheel weights. The YZ and SX have a close ratio transmissions and a lighter flywheel weight. Either of the MX machines can be tamed with a flywheel weight. Smoothest of all the choices (except the KDX) is the KTM 300. Smooth and linear power, great for the PNW (ask me how I know).

Bottom line, just get something and go riding!

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On 7/7/2019 at 8:24 PM, R1peacock said:

You’re never too old to get back into riding.  I recently got back into riding as well after nearly 30 years.  I looked at just about every bike that is popular and chose the Yamaha YZ250FX.  For the money I don’t think you can beat it.  It can lug low and rev out on top - trails or track.  Best thing about the YZ250FX is the suspension and the ability to adjust the ECU.  Change the map with the GYTR Tuner and its like a different bike - you can customize the bike for your ability and terrain.  I considered a 2 stroke but love the Yamaha 4 stroke’s gas mileage.  Don’t believe everything you hear about 4 stroke maintenance either.  Plenty of videos about the YZ250FX dependability (50+ hours with no valve adjustments needed, etc).  For $5000 you can buy used or just about get a leftover 2018 model for just a little more.  For your height the YZ250FX will fit you fine (its a tall bike) and the engine has plenty of power.

https://www.cycletrader.com/Yamaha-Yz-250fx/motorcycles-for-sale?make=Yamaha|2321194&model=YZ|764949743&trim=250FX|40779&sort=price%3Aasc

 

 

 

 

This is a truly great bike.  And its 2T twin the 250X is a fantastic bike, too if you really want to go 2T.  Don't follow the herd and buy a euro bike.

As for the above mentioned Honda CRF250F it is a warmed over version of the 230.  The ONLY good thing about it is the price, ~$4500 new.  The suspension has no adjustability except for rear spring preload.

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This is a truly great bike.  And its 2T twin the 250X is a fantastic bike, too if you really want to go 2T.  Don't follow the herd and buy a euro bike.
As for the above mentioned Honda CRF250F it is a warmed over version of the 230.  The ONLY good thing about it is the price, ~$4500 new.  The suspension has no adjustability except for rear spring preload.


I was in a similar boat to the OP, the difference being I didn’t ride nearly as much when I was younger - but some, and I’ve ridden on the street for 25 years

I went with the mild beginners bike by picking up the 250F. It may be a warmed over - or perhaps more accurately warmed up 230. The FI is solid as is the rear disk. I do wish the suspension had more adjustment. Waiting to see what the aftermarket brings. I’m 6’1 215 - taller and a little heavier is probably not a good fit for this bike. So far it’s worked for me to get my feet back under me and the price was right for a new machine.

That said, I’ve ridden a friends KTM 300 - and will probably look to something like that for my next bike.

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12 minutes ago, Michael Bauer said:

 


I was in a similar boat to the OP, the difference being I didn’t ride nearly as much when I was younger - but some, and I’ve ridden on the street for 25 years

I went with the mild beginners bike by picking up the 250F. It may be a warmed over - or perhaps more accurately warmed up 230. The FI is solid as is the rear disk. I do wish the suspension had more adjustment. Waiting to see what the aftermarket brings. I’m 6’1 215 - taller and a little heavier is probably not a good fit for this bike. So far it’s worked for me to get my feet back under me and the price was right for a new machine.

That said, I’ve ridden a friends KTM 300 - and will probably look to something like that for my next bike.

If there is as much demand for the 250F as the 230 has been there will be a pretty good aftermarket for it.  Another big upside is the air cooled simplicity, and yes, Honda finally got rid of that 50 year old design drum rear brake.

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On ‎7‎/‎7‎/‎2019 at 9:48 PM, BATTERY88 said:

I’m not quite on Oregon.  I’m on the Washington Oregon border fairly close to Portland.  I’m not sure where I want to ride or even where I can ride.  Heck once I research more I might decide to give up the idea.  I had zero interest riding a heavy bike.  What I mean by heavy is anything over 240 pounds.  Can you even legally plate a 2 stroke in WA?

 

On ‎7‎/‎7‎/‎2019 at 1:40 PM, Hans Schmid said:

Go buy a nice used KDX 200, KTM 200 or any clean 125 and have fun...

Though your heavy, a 250/300 2t could still easily get away from you... Ride a 125/200 to get the feeling back and when ready, sell it any upgrade to whatever you want next. 

Nothing wrong with 4ts, but with a limited budget and forgotten experience, I would advise to hold off for now on one... 

Great advise! I'd get any enduro 2 stroke. I'd look at 300's as well. No reason to spend 5k, buy an early to mid 2000's KTM 200, 250, 300 or a KDX 200, 220 for a couple grand and see if you want to ride. Another option is a CRF 230F or TTR230 decent slow trail bikes but plenty of fun.

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On ‎8‎/‎3‎/‎2019 at 10:49 AM, Knightly said:

It’s true, KTM parts are more expensive. I just looked up a Vortex top end kit for a 2015 YZ 250 two stroke at Motorsport... $150. The Vortex top end hit for a 2015 KTM 250 XCW is $188.

To me $33 isn’t going to affect which bike I buy.

There is a serious anti KTM vibe on this forum, which is weird considering that KTM has been dominating in the last few years. Pick up a Dirt Bike action or Motocross Action magazine subscription, or look at what the top off-road riders in the world are riding.

The YZX and XCW are focused for off-road riding with wider ratio transmissions and heavier flywheel weights. The YZ and SX have a close ratio transmissions and a lighter flywheel weight. Either of the MX machines can be tamed with a flywheel weight. Smoothest of all the choices (except the KDX) is the KTM 300. Smooth and linear power, great for the PNW (ask me how I know).

Bottom line, just get something and go riding!
 

The bone stock YZ is a good bike... for a fast A caliber rider! I love ripping trails on the newer YZ's! The YZ250X is also a great bike. Unless the YZ had been enduro-ized then a person getting back into the sport should steer clear of a YZ, unless it's revalved it will beat the heck out of a slower rider and they're snappy. The X is great but you won't find many good used bikes under 5k. The KTM parts thing is just funny, there may be a small difference, I can't tell a difference between my Japanese bikes and KTM's.

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I thought the yz 250x was the cross country version and the ktm 250 xc was also for trails.  From my research the yz250 ia race bike as is the ktm250sx
 
im looking at the x version of the Yamaha 2 stroke and the xc version of the ktm.
 
i think I have things narrowed down to 3 options.  The Yamaha yz250x the ktm 250 xc or an older version of both.  Still keeping in mind my cheaper option of a older KDX 200. I do want to plate them in wa but just to be legal between trails.  I have about zero interest in riding on the street.  Seems boring to me.  A jack of all trades bike I assume rarely does anything well.  So off-road trail bike is what I want.
now I just got to heal up and keep looking for a decent deal.  
 
i have a question about the Yamaha yz250-x vs the ktm 250xc. What makes the ktm two stroke more expensive to repair?  Parts more expensive or so they break more often?  
Remember I’m new so I don’t have any brand loyal bias.  Please respond as if you. We’re brand blind.
 
i get it.  I shoot handgun competitions.  Everybody picks a brand and bashes the others.  But for some reason I beat most of them with my $500 old school..  “won’t say” lol.  Starts with a G. Lol.  Why?  I shoot a lot.  That’s it. 
Those are still race bikes. People do trail ride them but they are stiffer and more competition focused close ratio trans etc.

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2 stroke is the way to go with the least amount of maintenance expense, and they're easy to work on yourself. My preference for trails at your weight would be 250,300 (XCW for tight stuff and XC for fast riding) KTM's with electric start. Do not try and use a motocrosser for trails unless you want to wear yourself out quick and get arm pump that will have your arms fall off. For 4 or 5 grand shouldn't have an issue finding a decent bike. My 2 cents. Enjoy.

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Posted (edited)
8 hours ago, mylsmkj said:

 

Great advise! I'd get any enduro 2 stroke. I'd look at 300's as well. No reason to spend 5k, buy an early to mid 2000's KTM 200, 250, 300 or a KDX 200, 220 for a couple grand and see if you want to ride. Another option is a CRF 230F or TTR230 decent slow trail bikes but plenty of fun.

IMO. Going from a KTM 200 to any 250/300. Would be a down grade  lol

 

OP. Whatever you do. don't get a CRF 230/TTR230.  They are farmers bikes, and are horrible in the woods. I think you'd regret that. Might be OK if you have a Mrs that's wants to ride, but, not for yourself.

Edited by Drop-Bear

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I am 61 and have not road since I was 30. I bought a cheap bike to see if I would enjoy it, and I do! I will be looking for a nice 2 stroke next year. Your never too old. 

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I'll quote an old saying you've probably heard before but I think it bears repeating. You don't stop riding dirt bikes because you get old, you get old because you stop riding dirt bikes. Don't analyze it too much or you'll talk yourself out of it. If you enjoyed it before then you'll probably enjoy it even more now. I'm 68 and was away from riding for about 10 years and I'm now riding with my grandson and his friends and I'm not looking back. They push me enough that I'm even riding faster than ever although the bike I think has a lot to do with it, a 2019 ktm 300 xc-w. Anyway my 2 cents. Enjoy

 

Dirt Bikes IMG_0121.JPG

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Posted (edited)

I just checked out two bikes today. One was a totally beat to death 2006 ktm 250exc and the next was a 2003 KDX 200.  This was after going to a ktm shop with new bikes.  I just can’t spend almost $8000 plus tax etc on something I’m not sure I will stick with.  The KDX is in great shape so I snatched it up.  It’s bone stock all original and well maintained.  I rode it around the block a few times.  Probably a bad idea considering I had my hip replaced just under two weeks ago.  Getting my stitches removed tomorrow.  No right turns!  It ran great and at this price even if I end up selling it in a year I won’t loose my ass. 

 

Now to rehab this hip and drop 25 pounds!

 

i appreciate all the advice from here.  I’m sure I will continue to use thumpertalk as a resource.

Edited by BATTERY88
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6 minutes ago, BATTERY88 said:

I just checked out two bikes today. One was a totally beat to death 2006 ktm 250exc and the next was a 2003 KDX 200.  This was after going to a ktm shop with new bikes.  I just can’t spend almost $8000 plus tax etc on something I’m not sure I will stick with.  The KDX is in great shape so I snatched it up.  It’s bone stock all original and well maintained.  I rode it around the block a few times.  Probably a bad idea considering I had my hip replaced just under two weeks ago.  Getting my stitches removed tomorrow.  No right turns!  It ran great and at this price even if I end up selling it in a year I won’t loose my ass. 

 

Now to rehab this hip and drop 25 pounds!

 

i appreciate all the advice from here.  I’m sure I will continue to use thumpertalk as a resource.

Good to hear. I think for someone in your shoes that's a better choice than a YZ250.

KDX will be geat to learn on (like they always were), even to keep as a secondary bike after you upgrade. Not that you'd have to, but people always seem to.

You can always get the YZ later.

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Congrats on the bike! Now get better and get riding... you’ll have a blast.

Invest in some good gear if you haven’t already!

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I just checked out two bikes today. One was a totally beat to death 2006 ktm 250exc and the next was a 2003 KDX 200.  This was after going to a ktm shop with new bikes.  I just can’t spend almost $8000 plus tax etc on something I’m not sure I will stick with.  The KDX is in great shape so I snatched it up.  It’s bone stock all original and well maintained.  I rode it around the block a few times.  Probably a bad idea considering I had my hip replaced just under two weeks ago.  Getting my stitches removed tomorrow.  No right turns!  It ran great and at this price even if I end up selling it in a year I won’t loose my ass. 
 
Now to rehab this hip and drop 25 pounds!
 
i appreciate all the advice from here.  I’m sure I will continue to use thumpertalk as a resource.
I'd imagine that KDX will work out great for you. Heal fast but make sure you're taking the time you need to heal completely.
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Posted (edited)

The owner threw in a helmet and googles so that’s two things I don’t have to buy.  I’m pretty happy about the condition.  It has no aftermarket parts on it.  Blank slate.  

 

Now I need to get it ready for the nw trails.  It has Dunlop D739 tires.  They are in great shape but I read they are best for hard conditions.  I need handguards, maybe tires and riding boots.  It looks like I have some research to do.  

 

Oh and healing. 

B41FEE35-1D3E-44B9-842E-26AB87AEF00F.jpeg

Edited by BATTERY88
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The bike looks super clean! Ride it, tweak it... repeat until it’s set up for you

 

Shinko 216MX FATTY is good for the front, and Shinko 505 or 525 cheater for the rear. Both work great and are cheap.

 

The 200 will want the narrower 18 inch rear tire...

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Ewww. Make sure you pull the helmet liner out and give it a wash.

Bike is ridiculously clean. Nice score.

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The owner threw in a helmet and googles so that’s two things I don’t have to buy.  I’m pretty happy about the condition.  It has no aftermarket parts on it.  Blank slate.  
 
Now I need to get it ready for the nw trails.  It has Dunlop D739 tires.  They are in great shape but I read they are best for hard conditions.  I need handguards, maybe tires and riding boots.  It looks like I have some research to do.  
 
Oh and healing. 
B41FEE35-1D3E-44B9-842E-26AB87AEF00F.jpeg.fc3bf284f6e37becd3326f149fee048d.jpeg
There's no frame or case wear that i can see, that's crazy. Great find.

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