DRZ400 too tall!

Ok, so I spend a hour or so at the local dealer. I'm wanting a newer dual-sport for some mostly off-road duties. The DRZ looks really good on paper, and has long been the one I lusted for. I'm 5'8" and about 170lbs with short legs.

I sat on:

DRZ-400: Too tall, could barely tip-toe the thing. That plus it's weight would make me uncomfortable and not willing to try gnarly stuff for fear I'd be on my side because I can't get a foot down easily. Otherwise, good list of goodies. Good power, adjustable forks

CRF230: Good height, felt a lot more comfy on it, but it felt way undersprung when I let my weight plop down on it. Non-adjustable forks, probably not as much power as I want but not sure

DR200: Same as CRF pretty much, definantly not the power I want from talking to my buddy that works there

DR650: Same story as DRZ400, but even heavier

Honda 650 (XR650?): Same as DR650

No KLX250, XT250 (or Yamaha's new one) to try, but IIRC, the KLX is about as tall as the DRZ400

I decided I need to look at older bikes, as I didn't really want/can't afford new anyway. I like 2-strokes, prefer air cooled but not completely opposed to water cooled.

What are some older off-road bikes that might be shorter? I'm in NC and it's still relatively easy to get a non-dual sport plated AFAIK. I'd much prefer a 2-stroke, but might have a hard time plating it. Any reccomendations? I want good power and enjoy riding a 2-stroke. Most of the 250's might leave me wanting more power. It's got to be something I can get into fairly cheap and not difficult/expensive to work on. I watch the local for sale paper for stuff and could use some help knowing what is worth looking in to ~



If you're set on a 2-stroke maybe a Kaw KDX220.

Out of your price range and maybe still too tall, but might want to look at the new Yam WR250R.

I'm 5'9" and ride a Husky 250 with a 38" seat height, it can be done. I do fall over a lot when I stop though.:confused:

I had a DRZ-S for 5 years. The Suzuki low gel seat lowers it about 2". I never bothered with lowering links or anything.

You might look at a DRZ-E model since you probably can get it plated. Lighter and more power.

Handn't thought about the DRZ-E. More power = gooder, lighter even better. They didn't have ANY Suzuki off-road bikes in stock, so I didn't sit on the DRZ-E. It took every bit of my flexibility to get on the DRZ-S I wanted to try the WR250, but they didn't have any of those either.

I'll look around for a Husky to sit on. I can start doing the jump off & walk beside it just before I stop like I do with my mountain bike if I have too ~


Considered lowering links?

I've thought about lowering, but I'd rather not have to. I'll have to adjust the front end to balance the lower rear, and I'd rather not buy something, then put more money into in just to ride it ~


Any bike you buy is going to have some kind of money put into it to ride it.

First thing is you can't really tell how tall a bike it for you until you set the ride sag of the rear spring. That being said. I have a drz400e. I'm 5'4 with a 29.5 (maybe 30 on a good day...LOL) inch inseam. I raised the forks in the triple clamps to the top (Free $$) (gained about 3/4 to an inch. and put on the kouba link (drz1) http://www.koubalink.com/populardrzfaq.html

they're 70 bucks. I can touch the balls of my feet.

Alot is a comfort thing and just getting used to it. If you are used to a streetbike and being able to flat foot it. Forget it unless you are over 6 foot. It's not going to happen on a dirt bike.

You are better off buying a more capable bike and working to make it lower then buying a smaller bike and hitting it's limitations after using it for awhile.

Excellent advice in here folks! Thanks for the input. I wasn't wanting to buy new & I'm also not afraid to work on them so that opens me up to some even cheaper rides. Yanni, I'll keep that in mind about what the title says, didn't know they were that particular. I do watch Knoxville Craigslist too, so maybe that'll help. Thanks for all the excellent input, I'll keep watching ~


My friend just came home with a brand new DRZ400s last night. I tried to sit on it and couldn't swing my leg over it! I had to put it on the kickstand, climb up onto the left peg then was able to swing my leg over it. Once on it I tried to sit straight up on it. My left tippy toe was on the ground but my right was a good 6 inches off the ground.

No way I could ride this bike! Will the suspension loosen up and lower the bike when it gets some use?

BTW I'm 5ft7in with a 27in inseam.:confused:

Don't give up on the DRZ400 simply because you can't flat foot it, I'm in the same boat with my Honda XR650L. The thing is, if you can get your toes to touch the ground you are good to go. It takes nothing to hold these bikes up, tip toes work. If you need to get a full foot down, simply slide your butt across the seat until you can get the required foot down.

I mount the bike the way chris142 described... just leave the bike on the kickstand, grab hold of the front brake lever, and swing your leg over, then get yourself settled in and away you go.

i usually put it on the kickstand to mount, then ride off. I can only touch one foot at a time on my drz, but when rolling, it's not a problem. You have to think ahead when stopping, but just keep your balance, & it's not a problem.

I too am 5'8, about 172lbs and ride both a DR650 and DRZ400S. Buy the DRZ400, replace the stock shock links with a set of Kouba Links, push the fork tubes up about an inch, add a Corbin dual-sport seat and you will be able to get both feet on the ground. This bike is too good to pass up just because a couple of simple modifications are needed to get a good fit! Best dual-sport available.

I kept going back to dealerships and trying to get comfortable with the DRZ. It's height also intimidated me. I ended up buying a used crusier and riding it a couple of years. Then I realized my first love was my only love and I sold the cruiser and bought a used green DRZ-E. The experience in simply riding a bike made it a lot easier to approach the green E and not be intimidated this time around. I have a 30" inseam and the old bones don't want to go over the seat sometimes. In those times I use the kickstand. I've also found it easier to mount from the right side. Maybe I'm a little more flexible on that side of the body. At any rate, I'm loving it. Oh yeah, I've had more than my share of zero-speed crashes (fallovers) 'cause I couldn't find the ground with my feet soon enough. :confused: Ruts do it to me a bunch, as does off camber stuff. I'm learning tho' and don't fall as much.

When they are sitting on the stealership floor they are intimidating. I agree that the more seat time you have on a bike, the less the height is a problem to a point. At 5'7" on my 450x, the height was a real problem for me when in off camber situations. I have cut the seat down by about an inch which is still high for me but the biggest help was more time in the saddle. Now I can slide up on the tank and really hit the corners hard and feel comfortable. I think the balance factor was 90% of the problem for me. :confused:

I'm 6', 170lbs, but have short legs. My weight doesn't deflect the bike much, so I'm always on one tippy-toe.

I've had a little bit of trouble on my "S" on technical trails where my feet don't touch until the intertia of the bike is too much to keep up (the S is a little on the heavy side), and over I go. I'm still training myself to trust my balance and keep my feet on the pegs. I have never had trouble on the street or most trails.

I'm going to cut the seat down about 2" and see how that goes. I wouldn't lower the suspension except as a last resort.

Do a search for" 2003 drz 400s lowering question" and you will find what I think is the best job done of lowwering a drz. ( done by goldcountryrider ):confused:

A dr350 or a xr250 are older 4stroke aircooled bikes, they have really plush suspension and don't sit as high as the new bikes and you can get them cheap. I think you will find the drz isn't tall, but that it is the standard height and that most bikes will be that high.

Take it from a guy who is 5'6" and 155 lbs. The lowering of the front and rear combined with a gel seat on a DR 650 is totally worth it for the stumpy legs. I'm now comfortably on the balls of my feet. Super comfy and the handling isn't compromised. Much more comfortable on the sketchy stuff as well. Don't cheap out and just switch the bolt in the rear. Turn the spacer on the rear as well and get the front done.

haha nice post.

read all, DRZ400 wins, everything is that tall, except the 2XX's with drum brakes & street bikes!

So, try it you'll like it, yes, I was in the same boat, so since i crash alot, regardless:) I just installed the bike "protection" before i had to explain to extra expenses to the wife, :prof:

But i've evolved, not perished, don't no why it seemed so tall back then:cheers:

My friend has a KLX250S. We traded bikes today for a bit. It is not nearly as tall as my DRZ with the stock seat. As far as seat height goes, sitting on the KLX after the DRZ is like sitting on the DRZ after getting off my 450exc (now that's a tall bike).

The KLX250S is a great little bike for tight woods riding, and for someone who is vertically challenged. The 6sp transmission makes up a bit for it's lack of torque compared to the DRZ400.

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