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Getting my first bike! Help please!

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-I'm 6' 1" (with shoes), 175ish. Athletic build.

-I've logged probably 4-5 hours totally dirt bike time.

-I live in North GA and will be trail riding, back yard riding, and hopefully some north GA mountain riding as well!

-I have never owned a bike but I have ridden my girlfriend's YZ125 and the YZ90 (WAY too small.) I loved every second of it and really want my own.

-Price? $800ish. Preferably no more ... but I'm willing to save extra if necessary. Looking obsessively at used bikes on craigslist

I'm looking at Honda's because I'm not a super mechanic and I've heard Yamaha's are finicky. I can top out the 125 (fast, but I'd like a little play) so I'm thinking about a 150, 200, 230, or 250 and a 4-stroke if possible (I've heard they're less jumpy, just as powerful, and NO OIL MIX!).

I've been told a CR 125 would still be good, but I'd really like something bigger to grow into.

I want something slightly more powerful than the 125 and preferably a 4t.

help!

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well you're not going to find a bike you like for 800 bucks if you're in the RUNNING fourstroke range. a 125 makes about 39 hp at the crank and like 34 or 35 at the wheel the 230 150 200 are all fourstroke aircooled beasts that are going to bore you if you've rode a full size 2 stroke like the 125. if you want a good beginner bike thats a nice bike find a 90's cr yz rm, they're all good bikes just pick your color.

around here 2 stroke 125's from the nineties sell for like 700-1200 bucks.

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Yammablue,

I dont know why you insist on noting that a 125 makes 39hp at the crank. First off, that would apply to modern 125s, not older bikes, which is what the op is looking for. Even for modern bikes, 39hp is debateable, depending on the source. I note the thread that was written by the dyno operator I posted a while back.

Op

You should note that the 125 only makes usable power at about 9,000+ rpm. That means it can be very difficult for a beginner to ride in conditions other than a MX track or open area. If thats what you ride, a 125 MX bike would probably work fine. If you plan on riding any trails, a 125 MX is probably a poor option. They produce almost no power at low rpms which can make trail riding a challenge if you arent a skilled rider. Yammablue is right about $800 not being much...especially for a 4t....my advise would be to save up your money.

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Thanks guys.

If I was to find a good price on a 4t, what would you recommend that wouldn't bore me? I guess more than $$ I want a bike that'll last a long time.

250? 350? Honda? Kawasaki? What are some good models to look for?

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i was just addressing his mention of wanting more power saying that the yz125 he rode wasn't enough and then refering how he wanted a 4stroke 150 200 230 and so on, those are great trail bikes but they don't make the power that the 125 2stroke makes but all depends where you want it. they make all of their power down low which is nice when you're a beginner and they're cheap on maintenance, but the way the OP stated how he felt like he needed more power well that just really isn't there on a air cooled four stroke.. maybe on a liq cooled big fourstroke.

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So basically if I'm looking for a trail bike with about the same power as a 125 or more I need to go 250F or north... (I know enough about bikes to know the 2t 4t equilavelents: 125 2t = 250 4t, 250 2t = 450 4t etc)

I rode the 125 2t in the woods and it was quite challenging.. So I'd rather get a 4t BUT I don't wanna half my power and get left in the dust.

Thoughts?

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ktm 200's are pretty luggable and they're two strokes. but you'd be spending a lot more than you want. maybe 125 with a flywheel weight? or buy a fourstroke beginner bike get confident on it and then get a faster bike, aircooled fours tend to hold decent value.

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I agree that the KTM 200 would make you a really good trail bike, but it will cost you alot more than $800. You might find a decent Kawasaki KDX 200 (2 stroke trail specific bike) for around $1300-$1500...depending on prices in your area. You also might find a XR250 (slower, heavier, but bulletproof 4t) for around the same price. At the end of the day, you are quite limited by your budget. If you could save another $700-$1000, it would open more doors for you.

To answer your concern about getting left in the dust, its really alot about the rider. If you could master an old KDX then save some money for mods or a better bike, you may be leading your group.

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If you want a four stroke with a litlle more power that a 125 you have to spend more cash atleast 1000. you could get a 2000 yz250f. Reliable farly easy maintenince (change oil, clean air filter,clean). and you wont get board of it to soon. If you do just put on a FULL after market exhaust and it will make a fun noticable difference.

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Thanks guys.

If I was to find a good price on a 4t, what would you recommend that wouldn't bore me? I guess more than $$ I want a bike that'll last a long time.

250? 350? Honda? Kawasaki? What are some good models to look for?

If you INSIST on a 4t you can get a 250 or 450f that will definately not bore you but they have a lot of power, an do alot of of research on em first, they are notorious for breaking. If you wanna have fun on a trail bike ktm makes alot of fun 2t trail bikes, also look for a kdx 200, also a 2t. Theyre always cheap around here in Mi and theyre good bikes.

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Preacherman,

You are not going to find a powerful, reliable 4t, such as a 250F of any brand for $800. I spend alot of time of Craigslist and have for several years...just looking for deals, so I speak from experience. Like I mentioned, the KDX 2t is the most bang for the buck. If you insist on a 250F, save at least another $1000, learn what to look for, and buy a trail specific 250F such as a WR250. Dont buy a 450 at this stage in the game...trust me on that one.

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Thanks for all the help! Keep it coming!

I live in Woodstock, GA.

I'm considering saving up more... We'll just have to see. I was hoping to get it before March 3 since I'll be driving to Tampa to hang with my buddy - I was hoping to go dirt bike riding. I've been combing craigslist. I did find a '97 Honda XR250 for $500 ... but that sounds like he's hiding the fact that it's in pieces. I'm eager, but not stupid. No way that's a fair price for a *working* bike.. right?

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Its probably not much for $500. XRs are really good bikes. The XR250 isnt particulary powerful and its heavy for the power it produces, but its also bulletproof. An XR250 produces around 18-20 hp, whereas a WR250 produces around 32..big difference. The suspension on a XR isnt going to be as good as a WR or CRF250X either. With that being said...on a budget...an XR250 might be ok to get your foot in the door. That doesnt mean that the $500 bike is the answer. Also, dont forget you will need riding gear...a helmet and goggles at the very least. Preferably, you would have a helmet, goggles, gloves, and boots. A jersey and pants are optional, but you would want to get those eventually.

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Yep I dont think the $500 bike is gonna work out, but at least I know XR250's are good bikes.

As far as the KDX200, is that a good trail bike too? This is great help to me.. What are good 2t trail bikes?

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If you INSIST on a 4t

Honestly? I don't.. I just want a good bike for trail riding that won't LURCH in 1st gear and won't foul plugs if it falls. Also, I want a bike that won't blow up on me... (obviously.) Basically I just want a sturdy all-around dirt bike to learn to ride really well on.

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if you don't like mixing gas your definitely not going to like the maintenance of a 250f.

finding a reliable 250 for under $3000 is almost impossible in my experiences. i would look at 2 strokes with your budget.

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