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'82 200R front end upgrade

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I need some clarification please I know the '84 thru 95 XR 250 front ends bolt right on pretty much the same with conventional CR.

I can't recall why the newer '96 plus XR 250 front end doesn't bolt right on something about the stem n bearings?

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All of the XR250Rs use the same size head bearings as the XR200s. The only issue is stem length which can be fixed with washers.

However there is another issue and that is fork length; the 81-90 XR200 forks have an extended length of 34 3/4 " from the top to the center of the axle. Forks with more travel will be longer, some more than 2" longer, this will raise the front end and increase the rake angle. IMO the 81-83 XR200R already have too much rake for the type of technical trail riding that I like.

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I need some clarification please I know the '84 thru 95 XR 250 front ends bolt right on pretty much the same with conventional CR.

I can't recall why the newer '96 plus XR 250 front end doesn't bolt right on something about the stem n bearings?

Stem length, a larger lower bearing and fork stops I think. The washer spacing is a bad idea because the stem length is quite a bit longer and the bearings no longer sit in the area that has a proper slip/press fit.

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Stem length, a larger lower bearing and fork stops I think. The washer spacing is a bad idea because the stem length is quite a bit longer and the bearings no longer sit in the area that has a proper slip/press fit.

The 96 XR250 head bearing part numbers are the same as the 90 XR200, which are 26x47mm. Every XR from about 79 thru 03 uses 26x47mm head bearings, as do the XLs, and CRs to the late 90s.

Good point about stem lengths because they do vary by year and model; the XR200s seem to have the shortest steering heads (other than CR80s) and the big CRs the longest. The stems have a reduced diameter between the two bearings so for a good fit the bearings need to be positioned on their respective journals. The problem of using a longer stem on a shorter steering head is there may not be enough threads to preload the bearings, which is why others have used washers under the nut. If the washers push the upper bearing too far down the journal some of the washers can be put under the lower bearing/seal to split the difference. Have said that the lengths seem to be within about 1/4", and there is extra journal length on the stems that seems to accomodate a stack of washers.

Fork stops may be another issue that should be researched, but IMO there are several solutions. Most of the XRs and CRs that I've looked at had the steering stop on the front of the steering head.

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Early up to 90 CR forks will bolt on to 350 and up XRs. Up till 89 you're correct , all the XRs and CRs use the same i.d/o.d. bearings top and bottom. Starting in 90 CRs have a larger lower bearing (30X52) and the stems must be replaced or machined to use the XR size bearing. Then in 92 up the big bearing is on top and bottom. I know this to be a fact Chuck, I've adapted many sets of CR forks to XR 350/500/600/650s. I have 85 XR200 250 350 500 600 650, XL600, 85 87 CR conventional and 90 91 94 02 USDs all within armsreach. I think the 95 on XR 250/400 have the larger lower bearing too but can't swear to it. Stops are a minor issue with 95 and later CR triples. It's not a big problem as these forks are designed to use the frame behind the headtube as stops and they seem to work ok without any mods. Headtube length is closer to 1/2" difference as measured on my 84 XR200/86 XR250 and all my XL/XR/500/600/650s so the washer spacers may just have enough extra journal area to work. The modified 90/91 CR stem would work great for washer spacers as you gain a lot of area that could be machined for bearing fit.

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I need some clarification please I know the '84 thru 95 XR 250 front ends bolt right on pretty much the same with conventional CR.

I can't recall why the newer '96 plus XR 250 front end doesn't bolt right on something about the stem n bearings?

Go to MRCycle.com and look up the part numbers for the steering stem bearings on your bike and then look up the bearing numbers for the year/model of the donor forks. I suspect the part numbers will be 91015-425-832, which is a 26x47mm bearing.

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Thanks guys I think I will stick with the 86 thru 90 front end I know it works my friend put on on his 83 only issue was the stops need to be grinded down alittle.

On another note though is there a possible easy bolt on shock upgrade? like say XR 250 shock from that era? The shock on it now is OEM and the dampening is like gone all spring right now.

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Thanks guys I think I will stick with the 86 thru 90 front end I know it works my friend put on on his 83 only issue was the stops need to be grinded down alittle.

On another note though is there a possible easy bolt on shock upgrade? like say XR 250 shock from that era? The shock on it now is OEM and the dampening is like gone all spring right now.

Good choice IMO. The later XR200 suspension all work too. Somewhere on here is a thread listing all the 200 swaps possible.

Edited by valvesrule

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Go to MRCycle.com and look up the part numbers for the steering stem bearings on your bike and then look up the bearing numbers for the year/model of the donor forks. I suspect the part numbers will be 91015-425-832, which is a 26x47mm bearing.

The bearings for 96 up XR250/400 do match top and bottom and are common to all XRs as chuck states according to Bike Bandit, CRs 90 up do not.

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Are you sure about the shocks? I know that this 1986 XR 250R shock would not just bolt on to the 83 model my friend has it was to long.

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You are correct about the 250 shock not fitting the 200. I've collected a bunch of info on XR shocks while researching for one of my projects. Some data is from my measurements and some from info posted on TT.

81-83 XR200R 13 1/4”? C&R adjustment??

84-85 XR200R 13 ½” C&R adjustment

86-88 XR200R 13 ¼” C&R adjustment

90-91 XR200R 13 1/2” C&R adjustment

93 XR200R 13 ¼” No adjustment

03 - CRF230F 15 1/8” No adjustment

81-83 XR250R 13 1/2” No adjustment

84-85 XR250R 13 1/2” C adjustment

86-91 XR250R 15 1/8” C&R adjustment

92-95 XR250R 15” C adjustment

96—03 XR250R 14 7/8” C & R Adj Integral Resorvoir

83-84 XR350R 15 1/16” C&R adjustment

The 13 1/4 vs 13 1/2 dimensions for the shocks depend on source, I think they are all 13 1/2".

Edited by chuck4788
correct chart and explain dimension differences

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Thanks guys I think I will stick with the 86 thru 90 front end I know it works my friend put on on his 83 only issue was the stops need to be grinded down alittle.

On another note though is there a possible easy bolt on shock upgrade? like say XR 250 shock from that era? The shock on it now is OEM and the dampening is like gone all spring right now.

I have a 1990 xr200 front end I would part with. Not going to sell the rear shock though.

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So could I use a set of 86-90 XR 250 tripple clamps / stem with a set of conventional CR forks like 86-89? Or would the fork tube diameters be off and pressing out an XR stem into the CR clamps be the better option?

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The 86+ XR250 forks are 41mm and the 86-89 CR125/250 forks are 43mm. Check your XR200 stem to make sure it is not welded in. Here is a picture of a 84 XR250 stem showing the critical dimension. If this dimension is too long for the steering head the bearing retaining nut will bottom on the threads before the bearings are tight.

84XR250Stem6375x8.jpg

This stem is the same length as the XR200 because the 84-85 XR200 and 250 used the same frame, and the 86+ XR200r is based on that frame. And I used this stem in my 90 XR200R with CR80 USD forks. However there are problems associated with mixing stems and triples because Honda likes to change the bore size on the triples between models. For more info check out post #5: http://www.thumpertalk.com/forum/showthread.php?t=815548

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So could I use a set of 86-90 XR 250 tripple clamps / stem with a set of conventional CR forks like 86-89? Or would the fork tube diameters be off and pressing out an XR stem into the CR clamps be the better option?
No triples will not interchange, Yes the tube diameters are different. No, the 200 stem has a smaller register than CR triple does. A bushing could be machined to fix this but it gets very complicated. Chucks last post gives all the pertinent info. The simple way is XR200/250 forks or 350 legs in 86-90 triples. The CR80/85 forks may be a good choice but they will need much stiffer springs to work well. All other options are much more difficult .

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You are correct about the 250 shock not fitting the 200. I've collected a bunch of info on XR shocks while researching for one of my projects. Some data is from my measurements and some from info posted on TT.

84-85 XR200R 13 ½” No adj ?

84-85 XR250R 13 1/2” C adjustment

86-91 XR250R 15 1/8” C&R adjustment

83-84 XR350R 15 1/16” C&R adjustment

The 13 1/4 vs 13 1/2 dimensions for the shocks depend on source, I think they are all 13 1/2".

The first 2 here have all adjustments, C&R and preload. I have 2 of each on the shelf. The second 2 I have on bikes but can't confirm the length. I suspect they are ~15" as I have an 83XR500 and 86XR600 on the shelf that match that size. I know some of those springs interchange to the 350. All the springs for the 84 to 89 250 can interchange to 84/85 200. Most of them use a 40mm body Showa or KYB. I would surmise they would fit 86 to 89 200 also. 82 200s are troublesome, being another 2/3 year model with a slightly different build spec. Although they advertised 10" travel both ends they were sprung very soft and had spindly forks. 86/90 250 parts are probably the only realistic option. I'll try to post up some pics of my 86 250 with the stock triples and 350 legs. Not the ultimate fork but a world better than 82s.

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Thanks guys I had forgotten that XR 250 forks where 41 mm for some reason I thought they had changed from 43mm to 41mm back in '96.

I like the Idea of the shock upgrade but it seems that it isn't possible or not that easy has anyone actually does this swap yet? Anyone in the snohomish WA area got an 86-91 rear shock could try it out with?

Otherwise I'll just probably rebuild the shock you can still get the piston seal for it and put some of DaveJ's (smart performance) oil in it. but part of me doesn't want to goto that trouble if the newer shock will bolt right on.

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I've been experimenting with different shocks and swing arms on my 200 and found the 86-91 250 shock to be 1 5/8" longer than the 200 shock which will raise the back end several inches. And the resorvoir hose is shorter so you will need a new frame bracket for the resorvoir. In a few days I'll post additional info about what doesn't work to my thread on XR200 Weight Reduction.

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