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Another 'What Bike?' question

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Hi all.

I'm a near-50 year old 200lb dad looking to get into Enduro with my 15 year old son.

I'm less concerned about bike choice for me (thinking KTM250EXC-F or maybe 200EXC, love that 2-stroke hit...). I did a little riding in my youth and I'm old enough to live with my mistakes.

For my son however I'm very keen not to get the wrong bike and put him off forever.

Ollie is 15, about 5'7" and 140lbs, but of course growing. His riding experience is limited to tearing around our few acres on a small wheel TTR125 which of course he's now well outgrown, both in terms of size and power. I WAS thinking maybe 125EXC for him...

We're looking at a few practice events locally here in South East of UK. Local clubs have some good tracks, great mix of fast and woody more technical stuff. Maybe get into more competitive stuff, some Hare & Hounds events etc later. If dad can take it!

A friend of a friend dropped around at the weekend with a slightly lowered 250 EXC-F and a Husky 125 (enduro not MX, don't know model) both 2004 bikes.

Lord these bikes are big! Ollie could just straddle the (lowered) KTM but no way on the Husky.

Problem I could see emerging was that on our very wet land he went down a few times and was starting to struggle lifting the 250 and kicking it up again (flat battery). I can see this being an issue with the height and inexperience leading to a few topples in the woods, Factor in riders behind him backing up whilst he tries to get away and you can see my concerns...

By the way, the bikes could not have been more different. The KTM 4T was easy and smooth, but of course a fair bit heavier. The Husky was a bit of a beast and I have to say surprised me with it's outright power when on song. I could see it being great for the fast stuff, but slower woody bits? not so sure...

I'm now starting to wonder whether I should be looking at something more manageable size-wise for Ollie. Maybe a CR150RF? or maybe an 85 2T?

Anyway, let's cut to the chase and my questions...

1. Any suggestions for Ollie? Do you think I can mod a 125 EXC ride-height wise sufficiently for him to be able to handle or should I be looking at something smaller (what?) until he gets the hang of things?

2. Given that I found the Husky 125 rather 'lairy' - although I'm sure I'd get used to it, is a 200EXC likely to be a step in the wrong direction, ie will I find that even more of a beast?

All and any suggestions welcome!

Cheers

Paul

ps. Happy Christmas one and all!

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yamaha ttr230, its big enough that he wont outgrow it so quickly but its easy to ride and has a nice simple motor.

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I disagree with the TTR230 these bikes are pigs, the power will never compare to a real enduro or MX bike. For you since you liked the 125 so much I would say Get the 200 EXC, It will still feel as light as a 125 but will lug like a 250 on the bottom end. For him the 125 EXC. He will fit just fine on it and probably be comfortable on it in the first few months. Those 2 bikes are very similar and when you work on them you will see how much the parts interchange, which makes life easier.

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you need to teach your son how to easily pick up any bike using his legs, not his upper body strength. It involves having your back to the bike, crouching down(bending @ knees), holding the bars and some other part more rearward on the bike and lifting with back strength and knees. Ive seen small females (on TV) pick up harleys this way on some program about the msf course. Get this down pat, and the choices widen....

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I just got my grandson a KX100; it's a shorter than a Husky 125 and smoother softer power. The Husky WR (woods) 125's are awesome bikes and make great woods weapons. I have a 08 Husky CR144 and I can putt a a snails pace or blast off on a MX track. You can have them lowered for now and reversed when he grows. At 52 now I haven't "outgrown" my 144 Husky. I do feel the lighter the bike the better so sticking to a good 2-stroke is my suggestion. Good luck.

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I disagree with the TTR230 these bikes are pigs, the power will never compare to a real enduro or MX bike. For you since you liked the 125 so much I would say Get the 200 EXC, It will still feel as light as a 125 but will lug like a 250 on the bottom end. For him the 125 EXC. He will fit just fine on it and probably be comfortable on it in the first few months. Those 2 bikes are very similar and when you work on them you will see how much the parts interchange, which makes life easier.

hes a 14year old beginer rider. its not about having the best bike, its about having the best bike for you.

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For him the 125 EXC. He will fit just fine on it and probably be comfortable on it in the first few months. Those 2 bikes are very similar and when you work on them you will see how much the parts interchange, which makes life easier.

Thanks for that, it is my preference, but is the 125 EXC any difference height-wise from the 250 EXC-F? He only just about managed to get both feet down on that, but the owner reckoned that it was at least a couple on inches lower than stock..

As we all know once you're rolling seat height is less of an issue, but when he does go down in a tricky bit in the woods where the terrain is against him, I don't want him to find it so difficult he gets turned off by the whole thing.

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yamaha ttr230, its big enough that he wont outgrow it so quickly but its easy to ride and has a nice simple motor.

Thanks for the response, but I'm not sure that the TTR230 has been sold in the UK. Quick search on Ebay and other bike sites threw up nothing...

We do have TTR250's but this seems quite a heavy, low powered bike? Although of course having a button is one less worry for him getting going again!

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you need to teach your son how to easily pick up any bike using his legs, not his upper body strength. It involves having your back to the bike, crouching down(bending @ knees), holding the bars and some other part more rearward on the bike and lifting with back strength and knees. Ive seen small females (on TV) pick up harleys this way on some program about the msf course. Get this down pat, and the choices widen....

Thanks, a great point. Picking up not the only issue tho... standing on tippytoes in deep mud or in an incline and kicking it can also be a problem..

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I just got my grandson a KX100; it's a shorter than a Husky 125 and smoother softer power. The Husky WR (woods) 125's are awesome bikes and make great woods weapons. I have a 08 Husky CR144 and I can putt a a snails pace or blast off on a MX track. You can have them lowered for now and reversed when he grows. At 52 now I haven't "outgrown" my 144 Husky. I do feel the lighter the bike the better so sticking to a good 2-stroke is my suggestion. Good luck.

We do have KX100's over here which may be a good bet. Does anyone know the seat height?

Only questions is that isn't teh KX100 an MX bike as opposed to Enduro? All advice I read (and there's a lot out there :bonk:) warns against MX bikes for slower trickier stuff, of which we seem to have a fair bit of...

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It has also been suggested that I maybe look at an 85cc big wheel MX bike, such as KTM, YZ, CR? Same MX for Enduro questions apply though.

If such bikes can be de-tuned to give a little more bottom end, plus maybe geared down a little, what sort of age/height riders are such bikes aimed at?

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We do have KX100's over here which may be a good bet. Does anyone know the seat height?

Only questions is that isn't teh KX100 an MX bike as opposed to Enduro? All advice I read (and there's a lot out there :smirk:) warns against MX bikes for slower trickier stuff, of which we seem to have a fair bit of...

you don't have to have an enduro bike for enduro. you set up the 100 with a flywheel weight some bark busters and maybe an oversized tank and you have a good enduro bike.

if you do get him a 2stroke, be sure to make him do ALOT of clutchwork, it will help get rid of the annoying stalls during races.

and yes the ttr250 is heavy as a rock... :bonk: i would know but they're INSANLEY reliable and they have good power considering they're 290lb aircooled fourstroke. BTW! i weigh 145 and am like 5'9" and i can pick my ttr250 up multiple times easy. its just when you get to the 20th rep where you fall and get crushed by the bike and die.

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you don't have to have an enduro bike for enduro. you set up the 100 with a flywheel weight some bark busters and maybe an oversized tank and you have a good enduro bike.

if you do get him a 2stroke, be sure to make him do ALOT of clutchwork, it will help get rid of the annoying stalls during races.

Good advice, thanks. May well investigate an 85/100 MX bike suitably modded... And fortunately we have a little land where I can set up some small twisty up/down stuff so he can learn that clutch control well before I unleash him in public!

and yes the ttr250 is heavy as a rock... :bonk: i would know but they're INSANLEY reliable and they have good power considering they're 290lb aircooled fourstroke. BTW! i weigh 145 and am like 5'9" and i can pick my ttr250 up multiple times easy. its just when you get to the 20th rep where you fall and get crushed by the bike and die.

:smirk: Think his mother may have something to say about that.

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Thanks for the response, but I'm not sure that the TTR230 has been sold in the UK. Quick search on Ebay and other bike sites threw up nothing...

We do have TTR250's but this seems quite a heavy, low powered bike? Although of course having a button is one less worry for him getting going again!

a friend of mine has one and loves it, hes about 5'7 160. reliable, air cooled, decent torque, very easy to ride etc. its kinda heavy but will be much easier to ride in the trails then a 2stroke moto bike. its got electric start too.

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It has also been suggested that I maybe look at an 85cc big wheel MX bike, such as KTM, YZ, CR? Same MX for Enduro questions apply though.

If such bikes can be de-tuned to give a little more bottom end, plus maybe geared down a little, what sort of age/height riders are such bikes aimed at?

he'll outgrow an 80cc, he might want more then a 250cc 4stroke trail bike if he gets serious into the sport after a few years but he wont physically outgrow it.

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At 15 years old you are growing fast, so i recon a 125 two stroke would be a good bet, even if you need to lower it.

My son went from a yz 80 at 12, to an ktm 125 at 14 with no problems,your lad will soon grow into it.

80/85's have a more vicious powerband than 125's although less overall power.

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Being in the UK, you could get the KTM Freeride 350 in another month or so.

My son rode a KX 100 with a flywheel weight and is now on a lowered YZ 125 with a flywheel weight.

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I think after riding the KX 100 it would make a fine trail bike and the FWW should make it even better. IMHO the small 65/85/100/125/144 MX 2-strokes are easy to use in the woods. Now I did have a 07 Honda 450R and that thing hated anything under 1/3 throttle LOL. I do agree that the WR's, XC, XCW, and the like are better suited stock but come on man....who leaves anything stock lol. I still think a KX100 or Husky WR (lowered) are your best bets. BTW the stock seat height on the KX 100 is 871 mm (34.3").

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