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Thinking About a 1990 DR 350

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Hey Drz riders. I've found a pretty cherry 1990 DR 350 for pretty cheap. I'm thinking about getting it for my 18 year old so that we can dual sport together (I ride an 02 DRZ400S). Any comments on this bike? Performance? Known issues?

Thanks......Roger

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Good bikes. A have a couple buddies with them. It will do anything the DRZ will, may take more effort in some cases. I consider it a trail bike where I would call the DRZ a dirt bike. They take a thrashing, parts are cheap, and they can be street legaled. Plus your son will get to be a better rider. He will dread kicking when he falls down. :thumbsup:

My favourite line was are you ready yet? Followed by a push of the button. :ride:

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The bike I'm looking at is the street legal model. I found it on Craig's list and I'm not sure if it is "E" start.

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No electric starts on DR350's Kicker only as far as I know. When my buddies fell down I would shut mine off and wait. They can be like the XR Honda's when warm. That said I guy had a 4XX kit in his and it always started easy, although he never fell down.....

They are what they are. An older model DS bike. They were really the only one here (in the US) that big without jumping to the 650 crowd. All the rest were 2 somethings. I would never trade my DRZ for one. But that or nothing, I would take one in a minute.

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The DR350 is a really good bike - also offroad. More limited than the DRZ (no motocross tracks, no racing pace), but easy everywhere.

OK, the starting requires some good feeling and learning curve.

The kicker is better because much lighter - I think anyway all 1990 are only kickers.

Reliable bike. If it has a high mileage, there could be some damage in the upper engine (valves, cams..), especially if driven often in dust without oiling the air filter properly. So make a test drive and be sure the motor does not do excessive mechanical noise: the DR350 should make much less mechanical noise than a DRZ, and sound very healthy (unlike modern 4 strokes).

Otherwise, good choice ! Make all the usual inspections for offroad bikes: dampers, shock bearings (put grease in greaser and check how old the grease coming out is), fork play, wheel bearings...

Make sure also the motor did not get much "tuning" (nothing more than a new exhaust) because anything else (air box, big bore) changes the reliability dramatically.

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For a beginner it is a good bike. I had one for 5 years and it was very reliable (made about 37000 miles on that bike and it is still running). I then bought a WR450 3 years ago. A different bike, but not so much, especially if you don't ride fast. I had the opportunity to ride the old DR350 a week ago, and the biggest difference between the DR and WR that I did notice are the brakes (they suck compared to a WR450 - I almost crashed), suspension (softer, probably way more comfortable for all day riding - just don't try to jump on that bike), and ergonomics (handlebar position, too small foot pegs, small shift/brake lever). The fork angle seems more steep. And the seat is a couch compared to the wood plank on the WR. It is a little heavier - you will notice that when you try to move the bike around. The engine feels underpowered compared to a WR, but it was the last thing that bothered me.

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The are a solid bike. If you want more information about them go the maximum-suzuki.com website and do some searching. Usually the clutch basket needs to be clearanced, but that is nothing. Adjusting the valves is an easy job and they will run forever. I have a friend that has one and his is an "E" start, but it is a lot newer than the one you have listed. Front suspension is not the best, but will be fine for dual sport activities.

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I have both a 1992 dr350s and a drz400s. AS others have already stated it is a very good bike. Is lighter then the drz by quite a bit. Is a pain to start and cant handle jumps like the drz but other then that it is a great bike. Very very reliable and real nice trail riding bike. It has 6 gears which is much nicer then the drz gearing. The Drz is much snappier and smoother feeling but I find the dr350 to be nicer to ride in the tight rocky twisty stuff. It is a really good bike and I would not hesitate getting for your son.

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I've had 3 DR's. The 1990 and 1991 DR's were very hard starters. In 1992, Suzuki improved this with ignition and kickstart gearing changes. Suzuki offered e-start on the 1993-on DR250S and 1994-on DR350S. I would look for a post-1992 DR350S if I was you - not much difference in prices until you get to the late 90's. For bang-for-the-buck (with e-start) go for a '94 or '95 - especially if you prefer blue and white over purple and yellow ('96 to '98). The 1999 is the most desirable year because they improved the suspension, but, you can usually buy a DRZ for what folks are asking for a good '99.

Mike

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Thanks everyone for the great information. I just found out it is not electric start and I think I'm going to pass on this one. I appreciate all of the single hand experiences shared in this thread!

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