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'01 CR125 Forks on an XR200?

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Hi all, I've read thru the sticky and searched a bit, so if this has been asked before, please forgive. I'm looking to upgrade my front end on an '99 XR200R and found a complete front end in good shape and including the tree on craigslist off of a 2001 CR125. I know some of the older years bolt right on, but not sure if this late-model year of CR will. I'm worried about the fork length and bearing sizes.

My hubby has a lathe and can machine any spacers needed, so SOME modification doesn't scare me, but if these raise the front too high, or if the bearing sizes are impossible to fit, I'll pass and keep looking until I see an 80's bolt-on set.

If it can be made to work, would you recommend to mod the shock too, or can we leave this alone? (It's currently stock, I may change it later but for now will leave alone if I can).


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In 90 Honda changed the CR head bearings to a different size from the XRs so the 01 CR forks are not bolt on. I don't have info on the CR bearing size so I don't know the issues involved. Another issue is the CR fork will 3 or more inches longer than stock so a rear shock upgrade would be needed. A XR250R front end will bolt on and not raise the front much, zero change if you use an early X200 rear shock.

I just put a 84 XR250R front end on a 90 XR200; easy bolt on fix with no change in ride height, but I did use the XR200 springs to better suit the bike weight.

Edited by chuck4788

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Thanks for the quick reply. Yeah, we've been doing some more measuring and sort of came to that conclusion. The idea of USD forks was tantalizing, but I want to go with something that works. Looked like those forks, if installed, would have raised the FE by nearly 4". Obviously that won't work.

I'll keep searching for the right bolt-on front end. One other question tho: I'm reading that older shocks bolt on without issue. Are the older shocks taller or stiffer (or both)? I do get some butt slap in whoops but guess I've gotten used to it.

Thanks for being so willing to share all your knowledge. TT is the greatest! 👍

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84-85 XR200R/250R and 86-91 XR200R shocks are 13.5" long and will raise the rear end to match the forks of the same vintage (or modded late 200 forks) for height.

The increase in travel will reduce butt slap but another contributor can be lack of front rebound damping from your stock damper rod forks causing too much pitching in whoops. RaceTech Emulators could help, but I'd start with earlier suspension pieces but that means a higher seat. Check out https://thumpertalk.com/forum/showpost.php?p=10687145&postcount=22 No easy answers.

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Just finished my budget suspension conversion on my '82 XR200R , thanks to the great advice I found up here.

I used a '84 CR fork and front wheel/brake from a $100.00 basket case I found on craigslist, and put a '82 XR250 rear shock (a half inch longer, heavier spring) that got off a rolling chassis purchased our local dirt bike wrecker for $60.00. Everything bolted on, just needed to add about 3/4 inch of spacers to the headtube cause the CR had a longer steer tube.

The bike now feels great under my 250 pound weight. Both fork and rear shock are working well, looking forward to leaving the bike with our local suspension tuner this winter for fresh oil and tuning.



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Testy: The tail on your front fender is too long and restricts air flow to the engine. Trim it up to the level of the top stud on the exhaust pipe, or use the stock XR200R fender.

I should clarify my comment about 'early', I meant early years on the late chassis which is 86-90. Here is the XR200 story that will help clarify why some items are bolt on.

Models and major changes:

1979: XR185 twin shock introduced, which became the XR200 thru 1984.

1981-83: XR200R Prolink chassis with a remote reservoir monoshock (13 1/4" long), only rebound clicker. There also was a monoshock XL200R (5 speed) during this time.

1984: A new full cradle chassis for the XR200R/250R. This chassis continued the 53.5” wheelbase of the earlier models but with 2.5 degrees less rake for quicker steering. Engine is a downsized 4 valve XR250 RFVC engine. Shock has remote reservoir as well as both compression and rebound clickers. This chassis became the 86 XR200R chassis, the XR250 got a new chassis for 86.

1986: Same chassis as 84-85 but with the 20lb lighter 2 valve engine. Chassis remained basically unchanged thru 02.

1993: Suspension travel reduced via shorter shock and forks, no clickers or reservoir on shock.

No XR200R models in 1989 and 1992.

81-83 XR200R forks are 35mm KYB, 1984 and on are 36mm KYB with minor changes thru the years, all years of the XR185/200/R used damper rod forks.

The reduced suspension travel of the XR185/200 and the 93-02 R models did provide a lower seat height making the bikes useable by more riders, and the 28.5 degrees of rake on the early models made them steer slower and feel more stable.

Table of suspension travel from Honda Service Manuals:

Years Model Front travel Rear Travel

81-83 XR200R 9.8 9.7 13 1/4" shock w rebound clicker.

86-91 XR200R 10.0 9.6 13 1/2" shock w rebound and compression clickers

93-99 XR200R 8.2 8.3

84-02 Fork part numbers (this doesn't answer the CR questions but will help you decide if you want to mod the stock forks):

Damper rods:

84-85 damper rod (pipe, seat) 51440-KK0-004

86-91 damper rod (pipe, seat) 51440-KT0-671

93-02 damper rod (pipe, seat) 51440-KT0-691

94-02 spacer 51402-ML0-004


93-02 Stanchion (pipe) 51410-KT0-691

84-91 Stanchion (pipe) 51410-KK0-004


84-02 R Slider (case) 51420-KK0-014

84-02 L Slider (case) 51520-KK0-014


84-85 51401-KK0-004 & 51402-KK0-004

86-88 51401-KT0-671

90-91 51401-KT0-831

93-02 51401-KT0-691

Rebound Springs:

84-02 51411-KK0-004

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I had a wake up call on engine cooling a few years ago when I put a water cooled front end on one of my XRs and the Vapor showed 400 degree cylinder head temp after climbing a long mountain trail on a hot summer day (Bishop Ridge for those in the PNW), I cut the fender to match a XR fender and end of problem.

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