Thinking Of Finally Buying A Modern Bike.

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#1
Ive been riding a long time, but Im stuck in the past. My Brother is a bit older than I am and I remember watching him race in the .late '70s......When I was old enough to ride, one of his racing buddies that still lived in the neighborhood gave me one of his old racing bikes and that was what I rode around the rest of my youth and even into my adulthood.

I've been racing vintage class motocross for the last 15 years, still on old bikes. Ive been on some friend's bikes over the years, a 2000 YZ250, and a 2006 YZ450...just a few laps each mind you.

My racers are as follows: 1972 Kawasaki F9, 1975 KX400 and a 1981 YZ465.

Lets say I do buy a 4 stroke 450, a 2006 or so that is in good working order. If a fat old guy like me just rides it for fun about 5 times a year, MAYBE entering into a modern support class once in a while at the vintage events...am I looking at a maintenance nightmare or what? I am not a fast rider, I wont be pushing it believe me. I do all my own work anyway, I mean full rebuilds, crank work, etc...so not afraid of doing the work, but what is the upkeep like for a 450 that is treated mildly?

Thanks in advance!
 
- a d v e r t i s e m e n t -

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#2
Ive been riding a long time, but Im stuck in the past. My Brother is a bit older than I am and I remember watching him race in the .late '70s......When I was old enough to ride, one of his racing buddies that still lived in the neighborhood gave me one of his old racing bikes and that was what I rode around the rest of my youth and even into my adulthood.

I've been racing vintage class motocross for the last 15 years, still on old bikes. Ive been on some friend's bikes over the years, a 2000 YZ250, and a 2006 YZ450...just a few laps each mind you.

My racers are as follows: 1972 Kawasaki F9, 1975 KX400 and a 1981 YZ465.

Lets say I do buy a 4 stroke 450, a 2006 or so that is in good working order. If a fat old guy like me just rides it for fun about 5 times a year, MAYBE entering into a modern support class once in a while at the vintage events...am I looking at a maintenance nightmare or what? I am not a fast rider, I wont be pushing it believe me. I do all my own work anyway, I mean full rebuilds, crank work, etc...so not afraid of doing the work, but what is the upkeep like for a 450 that is treated mildly?

Thanks in advance!
I bought my CRF450 new in 2002. I rode it a couple of times a week every week during the summer & fall at an SX style practice track. I did that for about 4 seasons before I had to do a valve adjustment which on a Honda means it's getting time to change the valves and springs. .Lots of hours lots of oil & filter changes, a bunch of tires, a few chains, and a cam chain adjuster, but nothing bad. I've worked on a ton of modern four-stroke cylinder heads and seen similar reliabilty to what I am describing from Hondas and Yamahas. Given the type of riding you are talking about doing a modern 450 should be as reliable as an XR if you keep the air filter clean and the oil changed regularly. The Yamahas have proven to be the most bullet proof over the years, with the Hondas coming in second. The others had some spotty reliability in the early years but have gotten much better so if you are buying new then it's likely any Japanese 450 you buy will show similar reliability.

Dedicated racers who practice a lot tend to see the expensive side of four-strokes. Old guys like us just get fantastic bikes that work incredibly well and run reliably for years.

The good news is if you do have to crack one open they are very easy to work on.
 
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