2 or 4 stroke?

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#1
Hi all, just stumbled onto the DRN boards, looks like a great place with a lot of info. Anyways, after not being on a bike for about 9 years, I'm thinking of getting back into it. My problem is I don't know what bike to get.

I was leaning toward either a YZ or CR250 (00-02), but then I've stared to hear all this stuff about the big bad new thumpers, so I'm thinking of maybe a YZF426, CRF450, or a KTM400. My last bike was a '93 CR125, and I've had few 125's, a YZ80, and a KDX200. I used to race MX, novice. But this bike will be mostly for fast trail riding, maybe some Enduro or Cross Country racing here and there, and maybe a little MX track time.

I'm 5'10" and weigh about 185lbs.

So what do you all think? I want power, but I also like a somewhat light flickable bike. Oh, and most importantly, one of my old riding buddies who also just got back into riding just got a '00 KX250, and I need to be able hang with him. Thanks!
 
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#2
Oh, one last thing I forgot to mention. I was leaning toward the two strokes for ease of maintenance. Are the new fours a pain to work on compared to the twos? Thanks again!
 

HiG4s

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#3
maintaince is a pain but you do top ends less often so it is about the same.
It is a matter of preference.. I just read a test on 8 of the new 250 class bikes by 8 riders. 5 picked 4-strokes as the top bike and 3 picked 2-strokes for best bike... it seemed some of the lighter riders (under 175) had problems getting the heavier 4-strokes to handle for them. They tested the Honda, KTM, and Yamaha 450 4-strokes and 250 2-strokes Plus the Kaw and Suz 250 2-strokes. All 5 that picked the 4-stroke picked the Honda. Of the 2-strokes one picked Yam, one Kaw, and one Zuk. But they all said that three or four of the bikes really could have been tied for first and none of them were bad.
 
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#4
Originally posted by Rabbit141
Oh, one last thing I forgot to mention. I was leaning toward the two strokes for ease of maintenance. Are the new fours a pain to work on compared to the twos? Thanks again!
I think you've got them mixed up there..?

Usually 2-strokes are considered a pain the arse to maintinance, while 4-strokes are basically maintinance free. However, once you really get used to 2-strokes and understand how they work and everything, they are incredibly easy to maintain and repair. As a personal preference, not only do I enjoy riding, but I also enjoy working with 2-strokes over 4-strokes, but thats me.

But I will warn you, these new 4-stroke MX bikes are just as much maintinance as you will be finding with 2-stroke MXers. They are nothing like 4-stroke XRs where all that needs to be done is fill up the gas and change the oil.
 
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#5
I would suggest riding a few and base your choice on that. Pesonally I like both but with a limited budget would go with a 4 stroke MXer. Good Luck!
 
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#6
Originally posted by Porstala F9


I think you've got them mixed up there..?

Usually 2-strokes are considered a pain the arse to maintinance, while 4-strokes are basically maintinance free. However, once you really get used to 2-strokes and understand how they work and everything, they are incredibly easy to maintain and repair. As a personal preference, not only do I enjoy riding, but I also enjoy working with 2-strokes over 4-strokes, but thats me.

But I will warn you, these new 4-stroke MX bikes are just as much maintinance as you will be finding with 2-stroke MXers. They are nothing like 4-stroke XRs where all that needs to be done is fill up the gas and change the oil.

No he didn't mix anything up.....Do a top end job on a cr 250R and then do one on a CRF 450....It's much more difficult to replace a top end on a 4 stroke.

The 4 stroke you've got many more parts to deal with...More different parts mean that more things can go wrong...You've gotta check cams, valves, springs, tensioners....on and on and on..Better hope a cam chain doesn't break loose under a huge load...These new 4 strokes rev really high too so that top end isn't going to last much longer than a two stroke.
 
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#7
Thanks for all the great info guys. As far as the maintenance, I realize that the two strokes require more regular maintenance, but from what I've been reading, and from your replies here, it sounds like the fours a little complicated to work on once you dig into them.
 
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#8
My simple maintainence list(for a KDX) consists of this:
Check air filter(depends how much and where you ride)
Check tranny oil(every 7 rides)
Check antifrezze(every 7 rides)
Check gas w/ oil of course(every ride)

Major maintainence is:
Grease steering bearings and linkage(every 3 seasons)
Change tranny oil/antifrezze/fork oil(when needed, when you have it apart, or every 3 seasons)
Clean KIPS/carbon off of piston(when you have it apart)

Its not really how often you do your simple maintainence just as long as you keep an eye on things. It is easier to do all your major maintainence at the same time while you have it apart in your shop or garage(unless you take it to the dealer). High maintainence is the 4 stroke reputation but its really just the engine being more complicated and the fact that when something goes wrong it usually cost more in parts and time. It's better to do you daily maintainence and major maintainence after the riding seasons over than it be July and you've got a broken cam shaft or worse. The top end can wait a while and its not that hard to take off. You will get more out of your top end depending how you ride(WOT all the time or idle to 1/2 in the trails). Ride a 2 and 4(if you know someone w/ them) and get back here.
TwoStroker
 
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#9
Get a yz250, 02 or above. Its a great bike with lots of smooth easy to ride power. or you can go get a cfr450, great bike with tons of power also, but will probely cost you considerably more. If you just want a bike that is easy to ride with lots of smooth power, easy to work on and maintain, and smoke your friends 00kx, then buy a yz250.
 
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#10
I'd just like to say that it is untrue that 4-strokes require more maintenance. They do have more parts but 2 strokes run at higher revs, for every 2 explosions in a 2-strock cylinder, there is 1 in a 4-stroke. This means things like piston rings need to be replaced and even the cylinder rebored in a two stroke. 4 strokes are designed to last long. You could leave a XR for example in a shed for years and it will still kick over. I've seen many old 4 strokes ridding around but I have never seen a 2 stroke pre 90s in as good condition as the 4s.
I hope this clears things up, cheers
 
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#11
Also consider how often valves need to be adjusted when you factor in maintenance. For low maintenance and reliability I would strongly recommend a KTM 300. It has alot of power which you want, no valves to adjust, no linkage to grease and the motors go a long way between rebuilds due to turning lower RPMs than 250 MX bikes. Also consider that it has been a while since you have rode serious and you might not want to buy a bike with a lighter flywheel such as a motocross bike. A KTM 300 will already have a heavier flywheel stock with much better trail manners.
 

CJG

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#12
RM commando,
You're right about the maintenance, if you're talking about an XR, DR, etc.. But XR's have little in common with the new lightweight, high-performance 4Strokes(YZF,RFS,CRF,KXF,RMZ).And the new 4's turn HIGHER rpm's than 2 strokes. And, while it's true that you have to replace topend's less frequently on 4strokes, it is more expensive and more complicated.
All-in-all, I'd say it's a push maintenance-wise. But personally, I'd almost rather replace the top-end in a 2stroke, than change the oil in a YZF.
 

Tony Eeds

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#13
Originally posted by Rabbit141
I was leaning toward either a YZ or CR250 (00-02), but then I've stared to hear all this stuff about the big bad new thumpers, so I'm thinking of maybe a YZF426, CRF450, or a KTM400. My last bike was a '93 CR125, and I've had few 125's, a YZ80, and a KDX200. I used to race MX, novice. But this bike will be mostly for fast trail riding, maybe some Enduro or Cross Country racing here and there, and maybe a little MX track time.
I have both a KTM 400MXC and a KTM 200MXC. Both require regular maintenance. By nature of the design, it is different. Like others have said, 4 strokes are a bit more complicated, but you don't have to spend as much time on them, unless you are anal.

Originally posted by Rabbit141
I'm 5'10" and weigh about 185lbs.
I am 5'-11", 165# and have a 32 inch inseam.

Originally posted by Rabbit141
So what do you all think? I want power, but I also like a somewhat light flickable bike. Oh, and most importantly, one of my old riding buddies who also just got back into riding just got a '00 KX250, and I need to be able hang with him. Thanks!
The 200 is flickable, the 400 is NOT. You should be able to hang with your buddy regardless of which bike you choose. A friend of mine owned a YZ400F and now has a YZ250F. From my limited time on them I would choose the 250F as it felt significantly lighter (never mind that I could never get the starting drill correct on the 400), but it rides more like a 2 stroke. My 400 has the e start ... :thumb:
 

linusb

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#14
Getting an opinion on the 4 stroke vs. 2 stroke is like getting advice on the best flavor of ice ice cream. For me, the 4 stroke power delivery instills quite a bit of confidence.
 

mxer842

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#15
2strokes and 4strokes require about the same maintanence, you dont have to top-end a 4stroke more than once a year at the most but you will be changing oil filters and oil all the time. 2strokes require rebuilds more often but are so easy to do thats it is null anyways.