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TC450 - big differences b/t 04-06?

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I'm new to the forum, having spent the last few years on KTMs and KTMTalk. Great bikes - the KTMs - but looking for a change and the Japanese bikes don't really do it for me. I've had an 02 TE570 for about 4 weeks, but I found someone who wanted to buy it and I was looking for something a bit lighter and more MX oriented, but still off-road capable.

So, I've been focusing on TC450s...I've seen 04s for <$3k, while 05s and 06s are about $1k more respectively. There's an 04 with only a few hours on it that is close to me, and I'm inclined to go for it.

Is the 04 a lot 'less of bike' compared to the 05 and 06? I know about the valve and carb issues, but anything else? I did a search on this, but didn't see too much comparing the model years.

Thanks for the help.

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I rode a fresh 04 te450, that jjewers bought for a great price used like your talking about. not the TC, but the TC is E start in 04 correct?, anyways that 04 te450 is a sweet bike very MX feeling but a great trail/off road bike

only it needs a tender clutch touch out of first gear, tends to stall a lot in 1st. maybe some carb work or drop the Countersprocket one tooth would help. Nice bike. I really liked it. I owned a an 05 TE510 too. The motors from 04-06 are the same. the 04 body/tankstyle is thinner more like the KTMs, the 05 and 06 are wider bikes at the tank that's all. and yeah the o5 06 bikes have that great Keihen (sp?) carburator, but the guys here know the 04 delbuto? carb too. I like em all.

$3000 for a low mileage 04 is a good deal.

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The 04 I'm considering has the E-start but includes kickstarter if I wanted to shed some weight. It also has 05 bodywork from a TE (blue & yellow) including the newer tank...so swapping to red & white would be a no brainer.

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Other than the re-designed seat/tank/plastic and other smaller stuff the biggest changes are: The '05s have bigger valves, coolant recovery tank, and about 12 lbs more weight.

I think the '04 valves are good enough except on the 250's or if you run them hard at higher RPMS big time alot. Sure the bigger valves are nicer on the '05s but the ergonomics and the lighter weight of the '04s is nice.

There other changes but sort of minor in my opinion. Others can relay them to you because I'm not really sure of all of them.

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If you can get a '04 with only a few hours on it for under 3K I would jump on it. I bought mine last year and it's been bulletproof so far. You'll need to put some hours on it to break in the suspension, they are pretty stiff when new, but they really smooth out after break-in.

I would keep the kicker, thats the one thing I wish I bought with mine.

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04 has the small valve stems that have not lasted very long on the intake side, exhaust are fine. Mid year they changed valve suppliers, the newer batch have been good. 05 they made the stems bigger and stayed with the good supplier. I beleive E start only was on TC both years?

05 they switched to the Kehein carb! To me who understands the Kehein I would pay a grand extra in a hearbeat to get an 05. If you don't have the grand the 04 is a nice piece but you may become more aquinted with cylinder head R&R then you had in mind

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04 has the small valve stems that have not lasted very long on the intake side, exhaust are fine. Mid year they changed valve suppliers, the newer batch have been good. 05 they made the stems bigger and stayed with the good supplier. I beleive E start only was on TC both years?

05 they switched to the Kehein carb! To me who understands the Kehein I would pay a grand extra in a hearbeat to get an 05. If you don't have the grand the 04 is a nice piece but you may become more aquinted with cylinder head R&R then you had in mind

I don't totally agree with Dave. Personally I like the ergonomics and the lighter weight of the '04s. The Mikuni on the '04s has been flawless for me and damn near everyone else. The guys who have problems with it must not be able to get it set up coreectly.

Valves were a problem on the '04 250s big time. Not the 450's or 510's. You are going to need valves at some point on all 4t's. The valves might last 15% longer on an '05 or '06 but so what. If you keep your air filter clean and do maintenance on the bike any valve will last a long time. Lot's of sustained high RPM's and little maintenance will burn up any valve.

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I dont know if you bought this bike already or not be heres a few things you should know. I agree with u totaly about the egronomics of the 04 compared to the 05 and 06. Also dont pull out the e start! You will be sorry you did when its flooded on a hot day. As for the valves, my 04 Tc 450 had the same valve problem as the 250s had, so if you purchase this bike, be expecting of that. It didnt happen to all bikes tho, but it happend to my old te 250, my tc 450, and my dads te 450! Some luck we had.

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Here is my take, there IS issues with the 04 valves, even on the 450, i know as i live with this issue. Also Bob is a little off, the motors are different. Based on the same motor but bigger valves and different specs on other parts make them a bit more snappy and responsive as well as feeling a little faster overall. I REALLY like the 06 TE450 motor. My 04 is excellent the 05 is a notch above to me. I like the ergos on the 04 better, makes the bike feel smaller and is better when standing which I do a lot. the forks and shocks have been upgraded from 04 as well. As for the Mikuni on the 04 I could not agree with Flame more, it works great and I have never had an issue with it. Those that did have not adjusted the AP right.

Bottom line is the 04 is a great bike but i would plan on doing something about the valves.

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I've got an 04 TC450 that I thouroghly enyoy. I agree with Flame and Ride (both are experienced veterans here on TT). Once the Mikuni is dialed in, no problems. The valve issue is over my head, but I do check mine every 2-3 months and have not had an issue. I ride fairly conservatively and do not over-rev the engine much (although I do clutch the :thumbsup: out of it in the nasty single track stuff). If you can get a bargain on an 04 go for it !

Jerry

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I rode a fresh 04 te450, that jjewers bought for a great price used like your talking about. not the TC, but the TC is E start in 04 correct?, anyways that 04 te450 is a sweet bike very MX feeling but a great trail/off road bike

only it needs a tender clutch touch out of first gear, tends to stall a lot in 1st. maybe some carb work or drop the Countersprocket one tooth would help. Nice bike. I really liked it. I owned a an 05 TE510 too. The motors from 04-06 are the same. the 04 body/tankstyle is thinner more like the KTMs, the 05 and 06 are wider bikes at the tank that's all. and yeah the o5 06 bikes have that great Keihen (sp?) carburator, but the guys here know the 04 delbuto? carb too. I like em all.

$3000 for a low mileage 04 is a good deal.

My one gripe about the TE's is that they come with a 13 tooth CS sprocket standard. You really can't go to a 12. Also, a 51 is about as big as you can go in the rear and that is only a 1 tooth change. My 2007 TE250 or TE450 will see the 51 tooth rear and I'll report back on how it works.

If the 2006 KTM 400EXC that I looked at was street legal I'd buy it in a heart beat. 14 tooth CS is standard and a 13 would make 1st gear trials like. THat would be very cool for the tight woods where I ride.

Greg

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I have been running a 14-52 combo on my 05 TE450 for single track and it's been great. It crawls well and will run 55-60 fine on top. Stock was 14-50.

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