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Thoughts on my 250F - Good and bad.

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I will be honest, I am a Honda guy from way back and if i would have had to spend money on a bike... I would have bought a red one. A friend had a new Suzi 250F in his garage that he had never been started so he offered it up to me to use. I figured why not... a free bike is not a bad thing even if it not the colour I am used to. He handed it over to me in the middle of August. When I got the bike to my place I did the usual pre-ride greasing, loctiting, sealing, tapeing and tire change. At this time I installed Renthal bars, skid-plate, Dr. D. hot-start, WC cluth perch and a 1-tooth larger rear sprocket. The first time I rode it was at a race and have to say i was impressed with the way the worked. The motor was fun but lacked a little top end, the bike handled well but the suspension action was average at best.

I broke it in on petroleum based oil and switched to Amsoil 0W-40 on the second oil change. I fiddled with the fuel screw and installed the Yamaha needle and was happy with the slight increase in power and easy starting.

Having heard of all the valve problems I was checking clearance every ride and holding my breath every time i slipped the feeler gauge in. LOL. All was good til the 10-12 hour mark then the left intake valve was at .002' and the left exhaust closed up to .005". I was not to concered about the exhaust but the intake situtation bothered me a little. I shimmed both valves back to spec and hoped for the best. After about 3 more hours of riding the exhaust is still at .006" but the intake has closed up to zero clearance. So I guess it is time for a new valve. I will pull the head and order parts for next week.

Do to the fact that the bike will be going back in November I am not about to spend big money on SS valves and WMR springs.

I did go back to the stock sproket for faster tracks.

As far as suspension I started playing with the forks by adding Enzo sub-tanks and raising the oil level. It helped get rid of the harsh feeling and helped with the bottoming. Still not happy I called Enzo and talked with Jacqueline about some base settings. She told me to try it and let her know if things worked. I had read about disableing the bladders here on TT, so another call to Enzo and a chat with Will Decker got me thru that job. As a side note, I took the bladders right out of the forks not just the springs and washers like was talked about here. I figured no reason leaving them in there if they were not doing anything. The forks got better again and to be honest I need to step up on the spring rates. I am 168lbs without gear so i am already boarderline for the stock springs. The problem with making the forks better was that the low quality shock showed its ugly head even more. Nice of the top shock bearing to be junk after 2 hours of riding!

Please don't think i am bagging on the bike cause it is a blast to ride and am going faster now than I have in a long time. Kaw/Suz just need to adress some of the issues here and the bike would be incredible! From the sounds of things, 2006 will bring a split on the 250F program between Kaw and Suz.

Should be interesting what comes from both of them when they are on there own.

I have never had a drop of coolant squirt out of this bike or had any over heating issues. I spent a day riding at Red Bud and if it would have overheated, that would have been the place!

I have been reading TT for a long time and this my first post. The info I have seen here and the people (for the most part) are all top notch. It is good to have a place like this to share ideas.



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Thanks for your post. The only part I honestly didn't like was about the valves.... Your post clearly shows that no matter how well u treat the bike, the valves can certainly go south. It WILL be interesting seeing the 06 models and finding out what the engineers found out about the valves. If they do.

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