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The mags confirms reliability issue with CRF250

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I was reading the latest issues from the 4 dirt bike mags. One of them mentioned that the CRF250's (04) has weak cylinder skirts. They went on to say that if the skirts breaks while the engine is running, the "motor is gone gone gone gone".

As an 04 CRF250R owner, I have a response to this...

How the hell are we going to fix this problem? It's like a ticking time bomb. :thumbsup::devil:

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When I've spent clost to $6000 on a bike, I'm going to at least going to spend a few minute trying to confirm it the informatin is true or not. It's not a case of "which bike is better" but rather a more serious and money costing issue whether the bike will self-explode or not.

Hey! I'm glad I'm wrong on this one. :thumbsup:

You actually believe what the rags write!?

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Ditto!! I trust the people at thumpertalk who are actually ridding and fixing the bikes more. Last year the GSXR was the fastest bike. then the cbr1000 and next month the zx10. I looked up the times from last year and the GSXR slowed down because they changed the color. Must be heavy paint. I read valve problems, piston skirt and clutch problems with the crf in the rag mags. Good articles on maintemance somtimes though.

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The good news is that with this info being out in the public eye Honda may be forced to finally deal with the problems.

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I'm not defending just Honda, but all makers of race bikes. Reliability issues have and always will be a part of racing machines. What we ride now is light years ahead of the crap I rode 20 years ago. The consumer has demanded lighter weight, higher performance and better everything, until we have the bikes we have now. I believe that all the OEM's, regardless of make, are tuning the motors to a level that they hope will survive the ham-fisted garage tech, and yet appease the hard-core amateur.

At the showroom stock level, a lot of horsepower is left on the table with just about anyone's racer, but in the name of durability, they all yield to the conservative side. If a race bike was totally bulletproof, it would be slow, yet last forever. Personally, I think Honda has pushed the performance envelope of the stockers (CRF's) to a level that others have not. The bikes are and will be fantastic, and closer to a REAL race-bike engine than most. Take appropriate care of it and be rewarded with that $7 piece of plastic.

One of the previous posts mentioned a time bomb analogy, not far off the mark with a highly modified race motor. Hardly any of us can afford to tune our bikes to these levels, yet we expect the manufacturers to build us the perfect bike and sell it for less than $6000. Ask Pro-Circuit how many $$$ they have in the Championship winning motor of Ivan Tedesco's bike, then ask how much the between moto/race maintenance is. Got Bank?

There is no perfect race bike, and very few of us can perform or can afford, perfect maintenance. Do the best that you can, leave some to the professionals, and take it all in stride, it's a RACE bike!

***Flame deflector - ON***

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I trust the people at thumpertalk who are actually ridding and fixing the bikes more.

What is ironic is that people who have problems with their bikes and report it on TT are often rediculed for the problem. "It must be a problem with how they are maintaining the bike." is a common response.

It is clear that the new bikes require more maintenance than those of a few years ago. However, even properly maintained, they can still break. Manufacturers are not perfect. They do a lot of testing, but some vulnerabilities in the design can still sneak through.

I think if we TTers would do 2 things it would help.

1) Don't blame all failures which others encounter on your favorite bike on the user. Every failure is not a maintenace issue.

2) Don't claim that failures mean the bike is flawed or a piece of junk.

There is middle ground between "the bike is flawless" and "the bike is a piece of junk."

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I spoke to Rick Peterson from RPM's and he said that the Honda 04 does in fact have a very thin cylinder skirt and they do break easy as compared to the other makes.

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Can you ask him weekend wariors need to worry about this?

I'm talking about the ones that don't rev or race their bikes like myself.

Is there a temporary fix or just luck?

I spoke to Rick Peterson from RPM's and he said that the Honda 04 does in fact have a very thin cylinder skirt and they do break easy as compared to the other makes.

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A weak cylinder skirt is a problem for every skill level of rider. These high reving motors do break and a weak cylinder skirt is not a good thing. This does not make the bike junk. Everybody knows Hondas are great bikes.

However, I do believe the problem needs to be addressed by Honda which I'm sure they will do. Even though Hi-Tech bikes do require more maintenance you can't maintain or make up for a design flaw.

As far as the magazine articles, I don't believe they are saying the bike is junk, I believe they are just making the public aware of a possible problem. I'm sure they would report the same issue on any other brand.

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have talked with a couple of engine builders bout the little crf cylinders etc.

Appears that a "possible" contribution so some failures of the skirt (rare, but has happened) is the pistons that are in these things, which honestly are nothing more than drink coasters. They wear a bit and begin to rock more quickly in the bore than say pistons with longer skirts on them (stable in the bore) combine this with the "thinner" skirt of the cylinder, let the piston rev to the point where dogs howl.....and you have the potential for.....well..much ugliness.

So, you have a bit of a design issue with a bit of a maintenance issue.

Wiseco I know is working on a longer piston.

Just offering that up is all.

When I do my first top end, I am going to the Wiseco +.75 piston and going to have Eric Gorr do the head ( to include the KW stainless valves and new springs). No issues, but I am willing to defer the gains of the Ti valves (I ride in the lower half of the RPM range) and different springs for maintenance longevity.

I feel its a great bike and like EVERY bike that is a totally new release we all collectively learn how to live with the beasts....kind of like women huh.

If its got wheels or a skirt it WILL give you troubles. Period.

Key is finding the one that gives you the most grins between maintenance down time.

I went through the "ready to sell this damn thing" with the first year WR250f with jetting, starting, running like crap etc etc. Now its common knowledge the fixes and work arounds. Give it time.....

HR

:thumbsup:

:devil:

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This article sums it up regardless of a defect.

I found the following in MXA, August issue, p.54....

Cheaper to Maintain(title of paragragh)

"Four stroke cost more to own. Don't get us wrong, they are cheaper on a race to race basis because they require very little in the way of maintanance. But they are ticking time bombs. All race engines have a finite life span. Two strokes and four strokes will wear out when their duty cycle is up. But there is a major difference; When a two stroke wears out, you throw in a new piston and get back into action for less then $250. Not so with a four stroke. If it blows up at the end of it's service cycle, which is approxamatly two years, it will ding your wallet to the tune of $1000 to $3000." :devil:

Sad, but true. Good thing thumpers are frickin fun. Just don't keep'em around too long, or, learn how to tear'em down and fix'em :thumbsup:

KH

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I'm not defending just Honda, but all makers of race bikes. Reliability issues have and always will be a part of racing machines. What we ride now is light years ahead of the crap I rode 20 years ago. The consumer has demanded lighter weight, higher performance and better everything, until we have the bikes we have now. I believe that all the OEM's, regardless of make, are tuning the motors to a level that they hope will survive the ham-fisted garage tech, and yet appease the hard-core amateur.

At the showroom stock level, a lot of horsepower is left on the table with just about anyone's racer, but in the name of durability, they all yield to the conservative side. If a race bike was totally bulletproof, it would be slow, yet last forever. Personally, I think Honda has pushed the performance envelope of the stockers (CRF's) to a level that others have not. The bikes are and will be fantastic, and closer to a REAL race-bike engine than most. Take appropriate care of it and be rewarded with that $7 piece of plastic.

One of the previous posts mentioned a time bomb analogy, not far off the mark with a highly modified race motor. Hardly any of us can afford to tune our bikes to these levels, yet we expect the manufacturers to build us the perfect bike and sell it for less than $6000. Ask Pro-Circuit how many $$$ they have in the Championship winning motor of Ivan Tedesco's bike, then ask how much the between moto/race maintenance is. Got Bank?

There is no perfect race bike, and very few of us can perform or can afford, perfect maintenance. Do the best that you can, leave some to the professionals, and take it all in stride, it's a RACE bike!

***Flame deflector - ON***

No need for the flame deflector, excellent point.

Come on guys, its a race bike that demands race bike maintenance. If you want to chug around forever without maintenance, get a big XR or DRZ. Maintain it properly and there should not be problems (see Manual for proper maintenance :devil:)

:thumbsup:

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I'm not defending just Honda, but all makers of race bikes. Reliability issues have and always will be a part of racing machines. What we ride now is light years ahead of the crap I rode 20 years ago. The consumer has demanded lighter weight, higher performance and better everything, until we have the bikes we have now. I believe that all the OEM's, regardless of make, are tuning the motors to a level that they hope will survive the ham-fisted garage tech, and yet appease the hard-core amateur.

There is no perfect race bike, and very few of us can perform or can afford, perfect maintenance. Do the best that you can, leave some to the professionals, and take it all in stride, it's a RACE bike!

But the X isn't a race bike... it's a trail bike. I would expect some trade off or longevity/reliablity for a race bike, but not a trail bike.

It's never too long of a push from the track back to your truck. It can be a long, long push on the trail back to your truck.

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But the X isn't a race bike... it's a trail bike. I would expect some trade off or longevity/reliablity for a race bike, but not a trail bike.

it's NOT a trail bike...an XR or the air cooled CRF's are trail bikes.

The X is a competition woods bike and needs to be maintained just as much as any 4 stroke race bike.

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Man, you guys sure love to use "competition" and "race bike" a lot. It's just a dirt bike to me. Even if it's called "a spaceship", I still expect reliability if I'm going to put down $6000 for it. Call it what you will, I don't want to have to deal with a weak cylinder skirt or unreliable intake valves and springs.

If a rice rocket doesn't have reliability issues when most can rev to over 13,000 rpms, I'd expect the same from a dirt bike.

But the X isn't a race bike... it's a trail bike. I would expect some trade off or longevity/reliablity for a race bike, but not a trail bike.

it's NOT a trail bike...an XR or the air cooled CRF's are trail bikes.

The X is a competition woods bike and needs to be maintained just as much as any 4 stroke race bike.

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Don't get me wrong,i agree with you about the thin skirt and the valve issues...it's crap we should not have to worry about no matter what class we put it in.

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