Enduro (or another "what bike ?" post)

the Eel

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#1
I'm currently riding a fully uncorked '97 XR 250R in some local enduros - mostly desert. I'm 5'11" and 165 lbs.

I rode my friend's uncorked, White Brothers E-Series piped XR4 the other day and I felt significantly faster on his bike. Was it just my imagination ? I feel like it wasn't ... I really think I could make better time on a different bike than the XR 250 I currently own.

I've thought on and off about a new thumper - something newer and MAYBE even larger - probably a 400 at the biggest. Any ideas ? There are so many great 4-strokes out now and more to come in the next year or so. I've never really ridden a 2-stroke so I am a little leery of crossing over .. any ideas ?

I've been looking at the WR250f and the KTM 400 Exc .. and have been waiting to look at the CRF 450R, the KTM 250RFS, the GasGas 4-strokes, VOR 4-strokes, and next year's Husky TE400 (238 lbs. w/ E-start) ...

The Husky seems neat .. but I still have some thinking to do. I'm a novice class rider with delusions of grandeur i.e. maybe I'll be halfway decent someday.

So what do all you Thumper fanatics have to say ? And do any of you 2-strokers have any thoughts on the matter ?
 
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#2
Originally posted by the Eel
I'm currently riding a fully uncorked '97 XR 250R
...can't fault ya for that.

Originally posted by the Eel
in some local enduros - mostly desert. I'm 5'11" and 165 lbs.
...feeling kinda tall now that ya trophied, eh?

Originally posted by the Eel I rode my friend's uncorked, White Brothers E-Series piped XR4 the other day
...now that'salways a mistake, riding something wtih more_____, which get's us to thinking "maybe I ought to..."

Originally posted by the Eel and I felt significantly faster on his bike. Was it just my imagination ? I feel like it wasn't ...
You probably weren't any faster, except in the open areas when it was really opened up. It feels faster elsewhere because it responds sooner when you twist the throttle, & when you let off, the momentum wants to keep it going...

Originally posted by the Eel I really think I could make better time on a different bike than the XR 250 I currently own...
;)

Ooooooh: fun! Money to spend & opinions wanted:cool:

Now I was wondering not if, but when U were going to make the jump, seeing your ability has moved ahead (ah, it was never Bhind AFAIK) of what that venerable XR of yours can deliver.

I suggest try B 4 U buy, tho that may be difficult w/some - like the slick new TM400. There are several in the club that can offer opinions/short rides - don't B shy, it's a lot better to mooch than regret spending $,$$$ later.

I'd stay away from anything in the 400cc-range & above unless it's the KTM, TM or GG, as the asian brands are relatively heavier than the euros & don't carry it as well; this is based on pers. experience w/an asian 400 I had for several years - lots of fun but too heavy in the whoops (I'm better off, more relaxed & happier w/my lighter/snappier smoker.)

The WR250F seems to be a shoe-in 4 U; definitely worlds better suspension than the XR can ever be & plenty of added power; not so much of the latter as to get you into trouble - & it's ~ the same weight or lighter than your XR.

If U decide to stay w/straight gas, here is my suggested order based on product availabilty & your stats.: WR250F, KTM400E/XC

Now if U decide to try smokers, there's the GG200/250/300s, then the KTM200E/XC. Anything else (MXers) would require conversion for your application; see http://www.gasgasusa.com/, then click on Comparison Facts.
 
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#3
IF YOU HAVE NOT RULE OUT 2 STROKES
YOU HAVE TO RIDE THE KTM 200 AND 300 EXC MACHINES WITH THE WIDE RATIO TRANNY
THESE BIKES ROCK
I HAVE ALSO RIDDEN A FRIENDS NEW WR250F LOTS OF POWER EASY TO START WHEN DONE CORRECTLY AND CAN BE MADE TO PERFORM LIKE THE YZ VERY EASILY (HIS DOES)
TO ME IT FELT VERY HEAVY COMPARED TO THE KTM 300 AND 200

THE KTM 4-STROKES WITH THE LITTLE RED BUTTON ARE TOO BIG FOR ME
I GO 150LBS 5 FOOT 2

I HAD MY SUBFRAME SHORTENED MY 7 MM AND DROPPED MY FRONT FORKS
ON MY KTM IT TURNS WELL NOW ALSO

MY OPINIONS SORRY DONT HAVE MUCH EXPERIENCE WITH THE OTHERS

TAKE YOUR TIME 2 OF MY BUDDIES HAVE THE NEW SUZ DR400 MACHINES
AND HATE THEM BUT THEY ARE STUCK WITH THEM NOW
 

CPT Jack

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#4
Ka-Ching!

313, FYI - on the internet, TYPING IN ALL CAPS IS CONSIDERED YELLING!!! - and is considered bad form.:eek: Please don't do it unless you mean it. :D No worries.

Eel, you are obviously faster than your bike (read XR250 = moped) and the Force is strong with you.:cool: You should proceed immediately to the closest Yamaha dealership w/ plastic in hand and demand that they sell you a WR250F on the spot. If none is available, or if you prefer orange to blue, locate the closest KTM400 and do the same (bring 2 pieces of plastic). If there is anything you don't like about the bike you've purchased, insist on an EVEN trade for your friend's XR400 immediately (it's green sticker year round!)... These aren't the droids you're looking for. </Force>
 
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mxbundy

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#6
Wish list?

Hey Eel, we met at the Qualifier, remember me I was the big guy on the 250F. I have to recomend the Yam, its way lighter feeling than any 400 and has enough horsepower to be compettitive with any bike, except maybe a KX500 in the desert. Only problem is it is sometimes hard to start, real bad when new, but gets better, only mildly anoying after a few hours breakin. i havent riden a KTM 4strk. but I have owned a 300. it was a good bike but it never realy handled like I wanted it to. And I had a hard time with the suspension, it never was a plush as my yamahas and it still bottomed, and this was after 1000$ and 2 different suspension shops tried to sort it out.
just look at it like this , if it will pull me around at 6`4" and 256#, it will roost with you.
Well thats my 2c
mxbundy
 

the Eel

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#7
Ok - this is all good commentary .. here are my thoughts - positive and negative ...

MX Bundy - would you recommend the YZ 250F over the WR ? I've been hearing some things here and there about reliability problems with both ... this concerns me enought to hesitate initially ... though the prices are right in the ball park for me .. I actually like how the YZ looks better than the WR .. but that's just me being superficial

KTM - have actually thought alot and read alot about the 200 E/XC .. seems like a neat bike .. I sat on one and it feels good too ... but again it's a 2-stroke, which I'm not sure I am capable of riding effectively ... any recommendations on the most 4-stroke-like 2-strokes ? Also, the 400 is just too expensive .. I'm not willing to spend that much probably around $6k or $6,500 tops ... I've seen the 200 in Mojave for $5,300

Husky and Husaberg - I'll have to admit i have a thing for the Husky - both the TE and the cross country version ... the 2002 te 400 will be 238 lbs. w/e-start ... plus there's a dealer right in Pasadena - Eric's Motorcycles (fancy that!) - who also deals Husaberg and KTM - the Husky's and Husaberg's seem to have very small tanks - maybe too small - and how is reliability ?

Wildcards - CR 450F (I have a thing for this bike also - so cool !!) but the tank is tiny and it will be pricey/ GG 300 EC/XC - have heard great things - pricey ! / Tm / VOR - super pricey and are they really proven at this point ? Parts acquisition ? Maintenance ?

Displacement - the 400s seem to be less stretched out at this time ... it worries me about the horses they're getting out of the 250 rfs's - is this a legitimate thought ? I really don't want to find myself on a high-maintenance, high-strung, super-touchy race bike ... know what I mean ?

Keep the good ideas coming ... I'll be on a new ride in no time with all this assistance ...
 
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#8
Originally posted by the Eel recommend the YZ 250F over the WR?
I wasn't asked but (excuse me. please while) I'll butt in: I don't recommend the YZ, knowing your (our) type of riding. Here's why:

The main advantage (others below), WR over YZ, is the wide-ratio trans (thank me later ;). If you were doing mostly or exclusively MX, then I'd vote 4 the YZ. For your type of riding - enduros, trails, exploring - the WR comes better, more thoroughly equipped, unless you R of the mind to modify the YZ for desert applications (let's not go there now). The closer your next bike fits your application, the better off you'd B from the start.

Along that theme, a greater spread or spacing of gears found w/the WR (or any off-road specific (not-MX) bike) allows a granny gear 1st for rock crawling/trials-ish sections, & inclines (Arrastra Trail uphill anyone?) yet an overdrive 5th (or 6th in some) to wring it out in WFO stuff, which, come to think of it, is why your current steed has 6 - a gear for every situation, well tailored to it's tame power characteristics & limiting suspension.

Again, all enduro or cross country bikes come stock w/a good spread of gears (GGs, 200/400 E/XCs, & the KDX all have have 6; all larger 2-stroke KTM E/XCs (not M/XCs), my RMX, & the older Yammie WRs have a wide-ratio 5-speed boxes for a good reason, my fine & fast friend :). Otherwise - like stock MX bikes (where 1st is just not quite low enough for slow going, 5th not high enough for faster, open stretches - can U say buzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz, buzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz, buzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz) you'd be wanting/looking/inadvertently shifting in search of a hoped-for-but-not-available next lowest or highest gear. This always happens 2 me when I (infrequently) ride friends MXers here in SoCa, both dez & mountains. (Disclaimer: this does not apply to other DRNers who never see a huge variety of terrain, let alone experience the wide-open desert as we do in SoCa.)

:think: (For this very reason, IMS & Moose have made sold wide-ratio kits for CR & KXes. Some older CREs had WR conversions.)

Additionally, bikes w/close-ratios need to be up & downshifted more often than the wide-ratio models to stay in the best pulling/responsive part of the power curve; having to do that - @ least be always concious of it - takes away from your concentration & add rider fatigue (cramps on a long event/ride). It feels awkward to me (an old, lazy rider?) having to shift more often than I should normally otherwise have to; like I already have enough to do & stay on the trail. Having a good spread of usable (enduro? 4-stroke?) power alleviates this point somewhat; all the better to have something come w/a power spread & transmission configured for a wide-variety of conditions.

Moreover, the WR already comes with enduro-valved (not MX) suspension, 18" rear wheel (less flats & more flexible off-road), kickstand (goes w/o saying), lighting coil, heavier flywheel (less stalling, more hookup), bigger radiators (cooling), extra case saver; all the enduro/trail accouterments. (It's easier & certainly less $ to convert a WR to moto form/look than YZ to enduro form/function.) C'mon Eeler: say uncle: this is it!

A WR drawback is the bulky, humpback gas tank, of which there R two easy solutions: 1) IMS tank/seat; 2) OEM YZ tank/seat. The latter looks primo IMHO & has enough capacity (2 gal.) for most mongo loops, perhaps even an entire (novice) loop of 40-50 mi. (I can do ~50 on my 2 gal. smoker, whcih used more gas than a diesel.)

Originally posted by the Eel KTM - have actually thought alot and read alot about the 200 E/XC .. seems like a neat bike .. I sat on one and it feels good too ... but again it's a 2-stroke, which I'm not sure I am capable of riding effectively
You are quite capable; it's time. If any doubts remain, they can be easily tailored w/jetting & exhaust valve adjustments.

Originally posted by the Eel .. any recommendations on the most 4-stroke-like 2-strokes?
Ahhh: the GG EC300, like Kiwi & LT. Some have said the best of both worlds. Another must ride/buy...

Originally posted by the Eel 've seen the 200 in Mojave for $5,300
Not bad @ all.

Originally posted by the Eel Husky and Husaberg - and how is reliability ?
Don't know. Others?
Originally posted by the Eel Wildcards - CR 450F
:cool: , tho a lot of bike (focused, like the YZ426F) for play riding.

Originally posted by the Eel VOR
Nice, tho exotic & rare.

Originally posted by the Eel Displacement - the 400s seem to be less stretched out at this time ... it worries me about the horses they're getting out of the 250 rfs's - is this a legitimate thought ? I really don't want to find myself on a high-maintenance, high-strung, super-touchy race bike ... know what I mean ?
U R pushing the XR to it's limits now; the higher-performance models under consideration require less wringing-out/pushing to perform @ a like level, having a higher ceiling/limit built in, tho they are built to take it. Yes, they do require more maintenace, but perforem higher too. So U get what U pay for & put into it.

Actually, my old diesel required just as much if not more maintenance than my current smoker. Why? B/c I pumped the former up to perform like the latter! :eek:

Originally posted by the Eel Keep the good ideas coming ... I'll be on a new ride in no time with all this assistance ...
OK; U asked for it: Crapparal had a WR250F on the floor for $4.9k last month; there's one @ Redlands Yamaha, but they ask more...:D
 
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CPT Jack

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#9
What you weren't impressed w/ my Jedi mind control?!?!

Eel, in all seriousness what is most important to you? Weight - I doubt it's at the top of the list, hp/hookup, ergos, suspension, e-start(again I doubt it)? Write them down in order. I'd just try to look at it that way first and then look for the best fitting bikes. Then figure any added costs involved & rank them them based on cost/package. Who knows, you could end up w/ a DRZ! This will keep you from getting hung up on any particulars.

Good luck!