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Best 450 all around playbike ??

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So here's my story, and I'm interested in opinions and reviews if they are based on solid reasoning and experience.

Currently I have the original WR400 (the reason this site exists) - it's super versatile as I have two tank/plastic kits that allow it to be a plated 3.2 gallon hog one day and a YZ trim profile the next. It's also ridiculously reliable, still running the original engine from top end to clutch. But it's old, and HEAVY.

I also have an CRF250R. It's really fun to ride, very light and flickable, decent suspension, good low and high speed handling. The engine, well its enough to be fun but leaves me wanting more at times.

So what I want to do is sell them both and buy a used late model 450. Optimally I want a bike that handles like the 250 but with 450 power and my old WR reliability. Can't afford new, so probably looking 06-08 model years. I'm about 195 lbs in gear, intermediate to expert level rider, and I'll ride just about everything during the course of a year - mx track, open desert, technical singletrack, sand, snow, rocks, etc.

I've been a bit out of touch with the industry in the last few years, but now I'm riding more again (exiting the kids phase of life.) I don't know the ins and outs of recent years - who has the best engine for reliability, who had awesome or terrible handling, which bikes have bad headshake, good or bad suspension....you get the idea.

So there's my wishlist - the best 450 all around playbike made in recent years, that won' break the bank with maintenance.

Suggestions ??

Edited by dieseld

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Do some research on the '08 KTM 450 XC-F..... it's a cross between an MX bike and a trail bike (on steroids)

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Thanks Wrfrk, I'll look into that 450XCF.

I see you have a 300, been tossing that around in my mind as well as I do miss the old 2 stroke hit and ease of maintenance.

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For the money you're looking to spend...you're gonna have a hard time beating a KTM 300XC.

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For the money you're looking to spend...you're gonna have a hard time beating a KTM 300XC.

I agree.... A 300 with some easy mod's will run with any 450 and without the 4 stroke cost.... not that the 450 cost that much more...at least not after owning a 04 CRF 250.....

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for the bloke that's more timid, rides prehaps more slowly and wants an all round bike that can do some open stuff and play around a bit, the KTM 300's are an excellent choice, they're also good for the fast guy the rides alot of single track, since this is where they truly shine, very smooth, forgiving engine, if your a faster guy that rides some single, some MX, some open stuff, and some stuffing around on hill climbs and things of that nature, an 08 450 XC-f is the way to go without a doubt in my opinion.

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You need to ask yourself if you care to have it plated......

since your in cali... your options will then lie between husky and katoom

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I picked up a KTM 450 EXC that I really enjoy. I have it plated, and I ride all types of trails on it with no problems. I wouldn't rate it the best in any category, but it does well with everything I do on it. I got it used for $2700 and have gotten my moneys worth from it. :ride:

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You need to ask yourself if you care to have it plated......

since your in cali... your options will then lie between husky and katoom

And BETA!

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buy a husky 570tc

heaps of torque to pull you out of any situation

easy to ride

little maintainance

cheap

easy to start when you get the nack

when you want to go fast ive it some throttle and it will give you such a thrill

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Not worried about getting it plated. My WR has a plate but I haven't renewed it since 2005 since I don't enjoy the dual sport rides too much.

Funny that only KTM/Husky has been mentioned so far. I'm gonna look into the KTM 300 and 450 since I have a good choice of local dealers, but I'm also considering some of the big 4, like an 06 YZF450, I've heard good things about that year.

Don't think I want to go bigger than an MX trim 450 though, beyond that I feel I'll be sacrificing the 'flickability' and fun factor that I'm looking for. Now if I can get e-start with the same weight, of course I'm game for that....

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You asked for the "best" we gave you the best. At one point or another I have had or ridden them all and at this time I like the Husky then KTM. The Husky riding position, weight balance, and handling just feel more natural to me. If I was to choose a Jap bike the Yamaha would be at the top from a relialabilty stand point. I do like the handling better on the Suzuki and Honda's. Hey the are all good bikes but I happen to like the Husky's the best. Good luck with what ever color you choose.

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I have and 08 yzf450 and 08 ktm 300. Both are great bikes, the ktm has more maintenance for me with the front sprocket seal. (little stuff) that seams to be a problem with ktm's. I have rekluse pro's on both and that makes them so much fun to ride. The yz seems to be more fun on the open stuff but does fine on the single track. They mellowed out the motor and made some good changes to the cornering issues that it had in the past. The 300 has e start. Its a toss up. I have had yamaha's sense 2000 (wr400) never had a problem. Good luck.

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I also have an 04 CRF250R that I bought on a whim, and never would have if I had done some research. It's really fun to ride, very light and flickable, decent suspension, good low and high speed handling. The engine, well it's enough to be fun but the costly valve maintenance makes me want to throw it off a cliff !

You just saved me from buying that exact bike, but im curious, what about the crf 250x, are they as bad in maintenance?

im looking for a 250/450F that will last maintenance free

hopefully e start

and lots of power, with little weight.

im 5"10 135 (16 year old) and i was looking at the

KTM450SX-F (because of weight, power, and elec start)

i already have a kx250 smoker, so now i want a thumper..

any help?

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Well Damon the KTM 300 would be a fun bike and would handle everything you can throw at it.

But stick with a 450, Suzuki for handling and fun but the Yamaha if you want to ride and forget about it (so I keep hearing), you just wont have the snap or the handling/turning of the Suzuki. I have had my Suzuki for 2 years and loved it (still do, thats why I'm buying another)had no issues as you know.

Look forward to riding with you soon

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Geez Andy, how did you know it was me - the guy who spent all Saturday making sure I only stopped on top of a hill so I could get that damn red bike started with a bump.

Kind of disappointed though, I expect at least a little sales pitch in that reply since I'm looking for a 450 and you're selling one :ride:

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For the money you're looking to spend...you're gonna have a hard time beating a KTM 300XC.

X2

I own a 05 rmz 450 and a few 2 strokes but after riding a 08 KTM 300 i wish i would have saved my $$ and got one.

In the woods and single track its a woods ripping beast fast, light, handles on a dime and realy flickable. pluss it comes ready to run lights wich is a nice option.

on a mx track its got lots of torqe to get you powered through the turns and fast enough to clear the big jumps with ease. And it has an awsome exaughst note.

The maintenance on a 450 isn't to bad. but it does take more time to maintain vs a 2t. I think if your an all around rider a KTm 300 is the way to go.

easy to ride easy to maintain and dependable. A+ in my book i think i am gonna clear som room in my garage for a new one next year.

If your bound and determined to get a 450 then get a rmz. they are bullet proof and handle great yamaha is a good power train but i love the feel of the zuke. and so far at 175 hrs i have only replaces a piston and rings and its only needed 1 valve adjustment and no shiming yet.

I hear the 2010 KTM sx-f is a great bike thow to lots of that ktm power and rmx like handling. I havn't bean able to ride one but i will soon and i look forward to it.

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OK Damon, you are correct, you can have mine for $2,400 I'm itching to get the new 450and I want to be able to stop on a flat once in a while, I was wearing my brakes out every time we had to stop on a steep hill.

Might be going to Ocotilla this weekend and might do the WORCS races coming up so want the 5 speed and still get some contingency money.

Seems like everyone likes the orange 300, you'll have to start carrying the 13mm wrenches like Tom if you go that way, I still say yellow is the way to go.

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