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Sage advice please

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Took a self imposed timeout from riding to raise some kids. Riding time is limited but now available. Couple of my friends are back in the game and I can't stand on the sidelines while they're riding! I'm approaching 40yrs old but still like to get after it. A lot has happened in the world of dirt bikes since I sold my woods modified 2003 KTM 250sx in 2005. I did not like the 250sx but bought it to replace my 426 to shave weight. The 250sx suspension and power (even after throwing a lot of $$$ at the problems) did not work well with my riding style - I found the power to be difficult to manage and the suspension bounced me off line.

1. Provide your height, weight and skill level

6ft 180lbs w/o gear

Raced for one year as novice and if I continued would've moved up to amatuer. (all on my 426)

2. Specify your price range if that's a limiting factor

Would like to get into something for $2500

3. Describe the terrain types & conditions the bike will be ridden in

Nevada desert and single track, high sierra single track, woods. Not into high speed desert blazing but enjoy washes and single track.

4. If you're changing bikes, what did you have previously and what do you want the new bike to do differently?

Previous bikes: grew up on KX80, rode RM250 for three years, rode/raced YZ426, rode KTM 250sx.

I'm leaning towards a 2 stroke for ease of maintenance and low cost to keep up. On craigslist there are two interesting bikes: KTM 250xc and a modified yz 250 woods bike. I really enjoyed my 426 - power delivery and out of the box performance but the thing was a beast.

Any advice is appreciated.

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I just sold my 2001 WR426 last week for the reason you stated...weight. I loved the power delivery of that bike (it had all of the free mods), but it was just too heavy for my size. I am about your size...6' 180-185 lbs and the WR wore me out. I bought a 2007 KTM 300 XC back in May and I absolutely love the bike. The 300 is very tunable, so if you dont want a big hit, it can be tuned to your preference. I can tell I am faster on the 300 than I was on the WR and others have commented as well. I would look into a 250 or 300 XC if I were in your shoes. The "trailized" MX bikes are ok, but they just arent the same.

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If you could afford it go with an 08+ ktm 300 , but at 2500 i think a modded 06+ yz250 is your best bet.

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If you are mostly riding high desert Sierra single track, than a slightly modified MX 2t should be all you need.

Sounds as if you and me are a similar in style. I ride a KX250, it works well. I bought a used bike, rebuilt the entire engine, suspension, and tranny 1st gear swap for less than $2,500. I’m a mechanic, so the labor was free, just bought parts.

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Thanks for the responses.

Yes, the YZ is an 06 and the KTM is an 07.

I've been on craigslist and there are A LOT of bikes for sale (within 200miles of Reno). Surprised to find nearly all of them are 4stroke MX with a few 2stroke bikes. Suppose it reflects the huge growth in 4stroke bikes.

Where do you all look to find used motos?

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