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4 Stroke reliability actually this bad?

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I have a dilemma, and have a thread running elswhere in 'general' posing the question of which 450 mx to buy. I've just sold my YZ250 (2 stroke) with the intention of picking up a late model 450, and in 2 weeks of trying im no closer to a decision. In fact, the most common topics on this site that ive seen so far are discussions on 4 stroke reliability issues, leading me to believe that buying any four stroke is a danger. My reason for the change over is fuel economy (believe it or not) because we do large distances in South Africa in remote areas, thus the four stroke being the wiser choice. However I am now completely disillusioned, and am not going to buy one at all. I just contacted KTM and theyre gonna supply me with a KTM 250 exc with a long range tank.

Are the reliability issues this bad, or is it just an unfair stigma!!??!! :thumbsup:

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From my "personal" experience No. Reliability has been no problem with my 3 yr old bike. :thumbsup:

After reading all the stuff on here I was so worried about my valves and checked them so often that I stripped my cover bolt. BTW: 2 have not moved in 3 yrs and 2 moved only .001 out of spec.

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If I was buying for fuel milage, I almost want to say that I would be all over a DRZ400...

I don't think my YZ450f really gets good milage. In fact, it downright guzzles gas when you keep your hand in it.

For long trips and long lasting reliability, I would think an air cooled bike like the DRZ would be perfect.

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You have to remember that there are close to 25,000 full size MX thumpers sold just in the U.S each year, that does not include XR's, DRZ's and such...With that being said, we rarely hear about the "Good" bikes and almost all stories posted are usually about the "Lemons". I don't know squat about gas mileage on these bikes, but I can tell you that you can buy a new thumper and run it hard for 1-2 years with almost nothing but regular maintenance...

So, who cares if a thumper rebuild will cost you $ 500.00 - $ 800.00 ?? Do the math

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I am on my second 4stroke in 6 years. My first a yz 426 ran with normal maint. for 4 1/2 years with no breakdowns. Now im riding a ktm 525 exc and its got 1300 miles so far with only normal maint and a sprocket set. Most of the 2smokers that are still left in my group of buddys are always wrenching on there bikes and do a motor rebuild every year. We ride about 100 - 150 miles a weekend. I know its cheaper to do a 2 than a 4 but If you dont have to do it or at least a 1/3 as often its all good imo.

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I've had 3 CRF 450's that refuse to break or have valve issues, but my CR 250 and KX500 2 strokes both had seized engines despite gentle use. Not very scientific, but 4 strokes are the future, and they can be quite reliable.

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I have a dilemma, and have a thread running elswhere in 'general' posing the question of which 450 mx to buy. I've just sold my YZ250 (2 stroke) with the intention of picking up a late model 450, and in 2 weeks of trying im no closer to a decision. In fact, the most common topics on this site that ive seen so far are discussions on 4 stroke reliability issues, leading me to believe that buying any four stroke is a danger. My reason for the change over is fuel economy (believe it or not) because we do large distances in South Africa in remote areas, thus the four stroke being the wiser choice. However I am now completely disillusioned, and am not going to buy one at all. I just contacted KTM and theyre gonna supply me with a KTM 250 exc with a long range tank.

Are the reliability issues this bad, or is it just an unfair stigma!!??!! :thumbsup:

Never had any issues at all with my '01 WR426. Never even checked the valves at all, still starts first kick. If your just doing a bunch of traveling, why not go with an XR600/650, or a KLR650? Any reason you want/need a higher performance motor? Doesn't sound like you need an MX'r for what your doing.

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If your just doing a bunch of traveling, why not go with an XR600/650, or a KLR650? Any reason you want/need a higher performance motor? Doesn't sound like you need an MX'r for what your doing.

Yeah, an XR650 would be pretty reliable with a long range fuel tank, and you'd be able to clock up many thousands of K's before you'd need to do a rebuild; I wouldn't mind owning one myself! A couple of weeks ago I did a two day trail ride camp, and there was a guy on an XR650 with a huge long range tank who was absolutely flying. I couldn't believe it, at first I was thinking that he was stupid for using a bike like that on a trail ride, but he was so fast through the tight stuff and even faster on the open sandy trails, I still can't believe it!

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4 Stroke reliability actually this bad?

No!

Had a YZF-426 and the only problem was with the tranny (my fault, bad habit landing jumps) top end held up fine and beside 99% of us riders can't come close to using the power a 426/450 puts out anyway.

Had a YZF-250/280F beat the stuffings out of that guy, always on the rev limiter and it never even whimpered. Absolutely loved that bike, with the big bore kit hands down best bike I ever owned. :thumbsup:

.

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Forums are a natural place to discuss problems. It's like the news, good deeds rarely make it to the front page. I have 65 hours on my 450 KTM with zero problems.

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Forums are a natural place to discuss problems. It's like the news, good deeds rarely make it to the front page. I have 65 hours on my 450 KTM with zero problems.

Absolutely agree :cry:

Come here and you will only ever see problems, thats because no one makes a post about how they went out riding and came back with no maintenance to do :ride:

Thumpers are not any more maintenance than smokers, infact i would say smokers are more maintenance. You will need to do a top end every 6 months with a smoker, plus they take more fuel mile per mile and on top of that oil is a consumable. So it is quite logical to say if you want less maintenance get a thumper :thumbsup:

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Absolutely agree :cry:

Come here and you will only ever see problems, thats because no one makes a post about how they went out riding and came back with no maintenance to do :ride:

Thumpers are not any more maintenance than smokers, infact i would say smokers are more maintenance. You will need to do a top end every 6 months with a smoker, plus they take more fuel mile per mile and on top of that oil is a consumable. So it is quite logical to say if you want less maintenance get a thumper :thumbsup:

I have 161 miles on the tranny oil in my two-stroke from last weekend. :ride:

Unless, your name is RC or Bubba, you can usually get at least a year out of a top end. Guys on 125s can usually get a year out of a top end with it still running pretty strong. Very few 250 riders rev their bikes enough to need a top end more then every 18 months or two years. The only bikes that MIGHT need a top end after 6 months are little 85 and 65cc bikes with 80 pounds throttle flickers on them. :ride: And I'll take a $90-$120 top end once a year over a $500 rebuild once every two or three years.

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They are very reliable but if you are a semi agressive rider you need to keep on top of the maitanence. I am a revver at heart so I had to completely change my riding style in order not to destroy the engines. When I rode 125's I went through a top end every 2 months, a ring in between, and a crank and various trans parts once a year.

On my 250F I do two top ends a year and in the past 2 years of ownership I have also replaced the crank, clutch, and valves.

PRetty damn good considering its one of the 04 kx250f's that everyone says is cursed.

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Yeah, an XR650 would be pretty reliable with a long range fuel tank, and you'd be able to clock up many thousands of K's before you'd need to do a rebuild; I wouldn't mind owning one myself! A couple of weeks ago I did a two day trail ride camp, and there was a guy on an XR650 with a huge long range tank who was absolutely flying. I couldn't believe it, at first I was thinking that he was stupid for using a bike like that on a trail ride, but he was so fast through the tight stuff and even faster on the open sandy trails, I still can't believe it!

I rode an XR650 all around Ecuador last fall, the thing was an absolute dream for that kinda riding. No problems with elevation, mountain riding, street riding. Pretty comfortable considering it's a dirt bike. I want a street bike, but I may just title a 650 and get the best of both worlds.

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You can't argue with what the race teams say, and what they say is it costs 3-4 times as much to race a 4 stroke. That doesn't necessarily relate directly to you and I, but it sure gives you an idea. It's not the maintenance that keeps me away from the 4 strokes though, it's the top heavy weight (and more of it) and the power delivery. 2 strokes are just more fun.

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You can't argue with what the race teams say, and what they say is it costs 3-4 times as much to race a 4 stroke. That doesn't necessarily relate directly to you and I, but it sure gives you an idea. It's not the maintenance that keeps me away from the 4 strokes though, it's the top heavy weight (and more of it) and the power delivery. 2 strokes are just more fun.

The race teams only say this because they wore forced to run out and hire 4-stroke engine experts, new machines ( valve seat cutters, milling bars and others) that they did not have and blow-up many a powerplant before they found a baseline....

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I don't think reliability is much of an issue on hardly any modern dirt bikes, 2 or 4 stroke. I have both and to me they are different tools for different jobs. For the job the poster is doing, long distance rides, I'd be hard pressed not to go with a big 4 stroke like KTM 520, Husaberg 650 or Honda 650. The biggest down side I could think of would be to blowing up the top end. You could, with little weight and little money, carry a 2 stroke top end (piston,rings and even reeds) with you and change it in the field. Blowup a 4 stroke and you're pretty much screwed. But honestly I don't see you blowing up either.

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how often do 450s need valve adjustments? what about other maintenance? what about when trail riding? racing?

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If I was buying for fuel milage, I almost want to say that I would be all over a DRZ400...

I don't think my YZ450f really gets good milage. In fact, it downright guzzles gas when you keep your hand in it.

For long trips and long lasting reliability, I would think an air cooled bike like the DRZ would be perfect.

except the DRZ is liquid cooled....not air cooled....the DR650 is aircooled but a big heavy pig...

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