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hometheaterman

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About hometheaterman

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    Virginia
  1. hometheaterman

    Fixing Up My Old Truck vs Buying a New One

    This is what I'm starting to think as well. The Tacoma is appealing as it gets decent gas mileage and it is cheaper than many other offerings, but the more I look into it, I just don't think it's really setup for what I'm looking for. This is also part of what makes it so hard to give up my current truck. It already has an aftermarket brake setup, 4:10 gears with an Auburn LSD, etc. It really just is setup how I want it (other than wishing it had more power and a manual transmission, but honestly, it's good enough). As parts have broken over the years, I've upgraded. About the only original parts are the body/frame, and most of the motor. Eventually it's gotten to be pretty much what I want and mechanically, most of it is in good shape. It's really just the body that's getting rough, and a few small interior issues. If I get something else, I know that I'm either going to have to spend a few thousand additional dollars setting it up with the gears that I want, tire size I want, stereo, etc. Or more likely I'm going to leave it close to stock as I've done with most of my other vehicles and think about how I wish it was setup differently every time I drive it. I also really hate the idea of going with IFS. While I'm not hard on it offroad, I've seen soo many IFS failures on trucks that other guys in our hunt club have that it makes me really appreciate a solid front axle. My used vehicle search is really making me also lean towards just having the major rust fixed on mine and leaving the interior and everything else just the way it is and continue driving it until the wheels fall off. It seems the market on decent used trucks for a reasonable price has dried up as mentioned above.
  2. hometheaterman

    Fixing Up My Old Truck vs Buying a New One

    Thanks for the replies. I'm really leaning towards just driving what I have until it gets horrible. Possibly having the hole in the door fixed and just leaving the rest. If I end up deciding to pay to have the body work fixed, I'm starting to think it would be worth it. The more I think about a new truck, I just don't think it really makes sense for me. I've always felt having a decent car and an older truck made the most sense for me and I think that's still the case. I enjoy driving my car enough that I have no desire to daily drive a truck unless I had to. I've been reading about all of the issues with the newer 3.5L engine in the Tacoma's and it doesn't make me want to buy one at all. I also don't think I'd really be happy with a Tacoma, and realized that I'm primary looking at them because the price is attractive, not because it offers what I want. I've spent the last few days scouring Craigslist and Autotrader, and looking locally for another used truck, just in a little better shape and I'm starting to think that makes even less sense. Maybe it's just the wrong time of the year to buy a truck, but these used prices are insane. I'm finding it hard to believe any of these trucks for sale actually sell. There seem to be 3 categories. There are trucks that are 2-3 years old with 50k miles or so and the prices seem to be within about 3k of what a new one would cost. That doesn't make much sense to me. The next category I'm seeing and honestly where I was hoping to find a truck is in the 10-15k range. What I'm seeing in that price range really doesn't seem like it's any better than what I have. If I buy something in that price range, it seems like I'm going to shell out that and then still be doing regular repairs. The majority of what I'm seeing have high miles (way higher than what my truck has), need slight repairs, and are at the age that they are going to likely need repairs on a regular basis. Many of which I've already repaired on my current truck. I'm not sure it's worth paying that much and then starting over with repairs again. The prices on Toyota's are even crazier. I know they are a better truck, but I'm not sure that a Toyota with 300k miles is going to be much more reliable than my current truck with half of that. While they last longer, they still don't last forever. Then there are trucks in the $5-7k range and the majority seem to be significantly worse than what I have now. Most of these have had body damage, have 300k miles, and look like they've had a very rough life. After what I've been seeing the last few days, I'd feel much more comfortable either just continuing to drive mine, or even dumping some money into fixing the body. At least I know quite a few of the common repairs have already been done and I've had this truck long enough to know exactly what I have. I'm not buying someone else's problems. It seems like buying something else, I'm going to shell out more money than I'd ever spend on body work, and get something with a lot of miles and not really know what I'm getting. I'm also in the position that I don't have to have anything right now since my truck runs fine, so if a deal pops up I can snag it. If not, I can keep what I have. I also have 2 other cars, so if I have down time it's not a huge deal. If it was my only vehicle, I'd be much more inclined to keep a new truck, but that's not the case for me.
  3. Sorry for the long post. I'm really having a hard time deciding what the right decision to make here is, and I'm looking for everyone else's opinions. Most of the truck forums I'm on are brand specific, so answers I'd get there would all be to take the route that ends up with their brand. So for a little back story, I really only drive my truck about 3,000 miles a year at most and I don't have much desire to drive one much more than that, even if I get a new truck. I've always found that I enjoy daily driving a car and just using a truck when I want to go hunting, when it snows, or when I need to haul something. Well, I currently have a 2001 Dodge Ram that I've had since I started driving. This thing has always been a money pit, but I've kept fixing it because with as little as I drive it, it makes more sense to keep fixing it rather than buying a new truck. I'm also to the point where I'm pretty happy with how the truck is setup at this point as I've modified it over the years. I can do a lot of the mechanical work on it myself, so that helps keep the cost down when it does need something. Right now, mechanically it's in pretty good shape other than a small wiring issue on the interior lights that I just haven't gotten around to fixing as it doesn't bother me. I also did a fair amount of work cleaning up the frame and undercoating it last year and while there was some rust, rust on the frame doesn't seem to be a big issue after cleaning it and coating it. The problem I'm facing is that the body has started getting a lot of rust and the paint is starting to peel on the hood and roof. I have a hole rusted in the door, there is rust starting to show up in the rocker panel, and there is rust bubbling up over one of the rear wheels. While I'm good with mechanical repairs, I don't have any skill when it comes to body work and paying a body shop seems to be extremely costly. I haven't gotten quotes to fix this, but based one previous work I've had body shops do, I suspect I'm looking at at least $7,000 or so if not slightly more to have this all taken are of and to have the truck painted. I've also never really been happy with any "aftermarket" paint work that I've had done, so that makes me hesitant. Another fear is that if I pay that, and rust pops up somewhere in a year that they missed, I'll be footing the bill for another paint repair. In addition to the body work, the interior isn't in such great shape. The foam in the drivers seat is starting to exhibit a bit of wear, but it's not horrible. Also like almost all 2nd generation Ram's, the dash is cracking. You can easily replace the top piece, but the actual dash frame is cracking as well which you don't seem to be able to buy unless you happen to find a decent one in a junk yard somewhere. It doesn't bother me so much right now, but may become more of a problem in a few years if it continues to crack which I'm sure it will. So with all of this, I started looking around for a new truck instead. I've looked at the V6 Tacoma's which seems like they'll do the majority of what I want. It'll also get significantly better gas mileage, about 18-22 mpg, vs about 10-12 that I get with my Ram. Plus I'd have a warranty for when things did go wrong. One I do have is that I occasionally tow cars and while it looks like the Tacoma can probably handle this, I'm just a bit skeptical. The next problem I'm facing is the cost. I can afford it, but a big part of me is telling me that it's insane to shell out that much money for something I use so little. It starts making it seem like the $7k or so I'd spend in body work and paint isn't so bad. I suspect I'll lose close to that in depreciation in the first year, and definitely will in the first 2 years. I'm also looking at a few of the domestic trucks, and I can get a bit more that I want, but I'm not sure that I want the poor quality that seems to come a long with domestics as well as the increased cost and increased depreciation. So it's a tough decision for me. On one hand, I think getting this fixed is going to cost me more than the truck is worth, I'm still going to have the hassle of spending time doing repairs here and there instead of spending that time enjoying it. It's still going to get crappy gas mileage and have less power than some of the modern V8's, still isn't going to have a great interior, etc, However, on the other hand, I do enjoy all of the skills that I've acquired from learning to work on this thing over the years, I have a lot of sentimental attachment to this truck and the memories that go along with it. In addition to that, it's setup pretty much how I want it. It has a solid front axle, 4:10 gears, a slight lift, is the perfect size and hauls everything that I need, etc. It really just does everything that I want out of a truck and if it wasn't for the cost of the body work, I'd have no desire to have anything else. (Other than maybe a diesel that is, but that doesn't make for me at all.) On the other hand, having a warranty, not having to worry about downtime for repairs, not having to deal with aftermarket paint and body work, etc. does seem pretty nice. At what point, do you all think it's worth it to go ahead and buy a new truck instead of fixing your old one? In a situation like this, do you generally find it's better to just bite the bullet and keep dumping money into the old truck, or is it better to go ahead and get something new?
  4. hometheaterman

    What Bike Should I Buy?

    I had never even heard of Beta as a brand, but you're right. I'm liking it. I'm liking it a lot. I'm definitely going to have to research this one a bit more.
  5. I've been out of the game for a while. (Sort of). While I still have my DRZ-400E and my CR500, over the past few years I've ridden them once a year at most and I haven't really kept up with what's going on in the dirt world. I'm hoping my circumstances are going to change in the coming months and I'm hoping to get to ride quite a bit more this summer than I have been able to over the past few years, which has left me wanting something new. I've thought about fixing up my DRZ since it has had a ton of work done to the motor, but it needs quite a bit of work done to the rest of the bike. The spokes are loose and won't tighten in the wheels (I assume I need to have it replaced with new spokes), the front forks are leaking, it's been sitting for 3 or 4 years, and honestly, it's just not what I want anymore. It's just too heavy. My CR500 on the other hand is perfectly rideable and it's what I've ridden the past few times I've been out, but it's just a bit much for some of the trails I ride. I'm usually faster on the DRZ, just because it's more controllable. I've always been a huge 2 stroke fan, but it seems like my options are very limited to KTM when it comes to new 2-strokes. So I'm a 230lb guy that rides 90% trails with some track involved. I started looking at the new RMZ-450, but it seems like I'm going to pay almost $9k for it which is hard for me to stomach considering how often I've been riding. So, it's not out of the question, but I'm also strongly considering going with something used and having money left over for mod's, repairs, etc. Is the technology that much better in the new bikes versus one 4-5 years old? After doing quite a bit of reading, I'm also really wondering if I'd be better off with either a 125cc 2-stroke, or a 250cc 4-stroke instead of going with a 250 or 450. Having never ridden a 125 or 250f, I'm really concerned about it being under powered with my weight, but most of the articles I'm reading make them sound like they have plenty of power and are much more controllable on the trails. I have quite a bit of experience with a 250 2-stroke, so I kind of know what to expect there and I know I won't be disappointed. So coming from a CR500 and knowing that I mostly ride trails, what would you recommend? Another reason the 2-strokes are so tempting is that they are so cheap to rebuild. So if I got a used one and needed to rebuild the motor, it's simple and cheap (for the most part). Am I better off going with something older and used, something used and relatively knew, or just a new 4-stroke? I also don't want to spend more time working on this thing that riding it which is the biggest pro I see to going with a new bike. How much have the bikes improved since the 2000-2005 range that I've owned previously?
  6. hometheaterman

    89 lt250r won’t start

    Assuming it has compression, check for spark. Pull the plug and touch it against the metal and see if it sparks. (Make sure you're not touching the plug.) I prefer to do this holding the rubber boot with a pair of rubber insulated pliers. It may not even bad a bad idea to put another plug in. I suspect you're not getting a good spark. If you are getting a good spark, then I'd make sure it's getting good fuel and air. As for the oil under the exhaust, I also suspect the springs are weak, or the gasket is bad. That said, I also have a 89 LT250R and even with a new gasket/springs, I can never get it to completely stop spraying oil out at the exhaust manifold. It seems to just be the nature of these quads. I wear old pants as I know I can expect oil specs on them. BTW, great choice in quads. I also have an 89 and LOVE it!
  7. hometheaterman

    What's the Value of This DRZ?

    Thanks guys. That gives me a ball park idea. I honestly had $500 in mind, but I didn't know if it I was out of line or not. I guess I'll see what he decides he wants for it and go from there. I live in VA and I've always wanted to do this. However, it sounds like many people have a lot of trouble with this. I also bought the bike used and don't have the original certificate of origin which people are saying that they are needing to get dirt bikes plated. I'd definitely be open to this option if someone in VA has done it and has any advice. I'd just like to get this thing street legal so that I can actually ride it. When I have to trailer it close to 2 hours to ride it, it makes it a hassle to go riding.
  8. hometheaterman

    What's the Value of This DRZ?

    I have a friend that has a DRZ400S with a bad motor. I'm not sure what year it is, but I suspect it somewhere around a 2010. He cracked the case on a rock and didn't realize until he had ridden it several miles with no oil in it. It now has a knock in the bottom end. This happened 3-4 years ago and has been sitting ever since. Other than this it's in used, but good condition. He's finally to the point that he's considering selling it and I'm debating if I want to pick it up. What would be a good price? It's been a while since I've been involved with the forums on here so I've lost touch with anything current to do with DRZ's. That said, I have a 2000 DRZ-400E model which I had the motor rebuilt probably 10 years ago now, but it literally only has 5-10 hours on it. After rebuilding the motor life got busy and I kind of put riding to the side. I also bought a CR500 which I generally ride the 1-2x a year that I get to ride. The only reason I haven't gotten rid of the bike is that I hate to take such a huge loss on it, so I just let it sit. I am thinking if I had a street legal model I might ride it quite a bit more. The thought of buying this S model and swapping over my motor, carb, exhaust, suspension, etc. is really tempting to me. I just don't want to overpay buying this thing. What do they normally go for in this condition? How hard is it to swap over? I know the wiring will be slightly different, and I know you can't get a neutral light, but I'm fine with that. Can you use the E model CDI, or do you have to swap the whole wiring harness for that? Is this a project worth attempting if I can get his bike for a decent price?
  9. hometheaterman

    Master Cylinder Options

    I don't know if fade is the right word, but the brake just doesn't feel tight like it used to. I've bled it several times as that was my initial thought as well. I then rode my friends S model and his felt identical. With the Brembo the brakes grabbed a lot harder with a lot less force on the lever. I guess that's what I really miss. It made it very easy to do stoppies, while you'd really have to work at it with the oem master cylinder. I'll have to look at the caliper. I believe it's oem, but I'm really not sure. I haven't done much with the bike at all in the past few years other than let it sit.
  10. hometheaterman

    At what point do you need race gas?

    I'll try to do a compression test and report back. I've never done one on this bike. I also don't have any pictures of the piston. I can't remember if I ever saw it or not. I had the rebuild done about 2 years ago, but I've only ridden the bike twice since then. Since I've never torn into this motor myself I haven't personally seen anything inside of it. The first time Eddie built it, and the second time was at a time in my life where I didn't have time to work on the bike (or ride it), so I had someone else work on it then. As for the jetting, I guess I'm not 100% positive on that. I didn't see any signs of it being lean. The plugs didn't look white like I'd expect for a lean condition although I suppose that it's possible.
  11. hometheaterman

    Master Cylinder Options

    What are you guys running for a front master cylinder? When I bought my DRZ it had a Brembo on it, but I'm not sure which one. I know it used a different line as the fittings were a different size. All was great until I broke a bolt off in it. Trying to drill it out ended up with me needing a new MC. I got a stock one a few years ago and put on there with a SS line and I honestly can't stand this thing. I haven't ridden the bike much over the past few years, but now that I'm trying to get back into riding I want to do something about this. It doesn't grab anywhere near what the Brembo did, it gets brake fade after having to get on the brakes hard a time or two, etc. What do you guys suggest as far as a replacement? If I go back with a Brembo, any suggestions as to which one to go with and which line I will need?
  12. hometheaterman

    At what point do you need race gas?

    I have a 95 CR500 that was originally built by Eddie Sisneros on this forum. When he built it, he ported said he ported the cylinder, but that it was still fine to run pump gas in it. Well after about 15 to 20 hours of riding it, it developed a transmission problem. I had a local guy tear it down and when he did he discovered that the piston looked deformed. His opinion was that it was likely from detonation. He said that my cylinder had pretty heavy porting and he thought I should be running race gas in the bike. I have ever since, but it's getting very expensive at $60 per 5 gallon can. I'm starting to question if I really need to be doing this or if I should go back to pump gas. If I do need to, I'm thinking I may be better off to get another cylinder to stick on here. Do you guys generally find that you need to run it after porting the cylinder?
  13. hometheaterman

    CR500 Needle Seat

    Well, I found a factory Pj27n for $40. Is it really worth spending the extra money to go with a Pwk?
  14. hometheaterman

    What's my bike worth?

    That's what I usually do!
  15. hometheaterman

    What's my bike worth?

    That's exactly right. That's what I ran into years ago when I built my DRZ. I had a bike that was worth probably $2,500-3,000 in stock form. I had around $3,000 into the motor, a $700 exhaust, suspension work, etc. After the $3,000 engine rebuild I put maybe 10 hours on it in the next year. (That's being generous.) Since I no longer had time to ride it, I decided to sell it. Everyone kept offering me the same $2,500-3,000 that I'd have gotten in stock form. They didn't believe that it had barely been ridden since the rebuild, they didn't believe that it hadn't been beat on, and they all made it very well known that you never get your money back when you modify a bike. I ended up keeping the bike and 10 years later I have maybe 20 hours on the motor. It pretty much just sits for the rare occasion that I do want to take it out and ride it. If you invest the money into modifying the bike you either have to keep it, or you have to be willing to lose every bit of money that you put into it.
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