Rethinking my choice in the WR; need a bit of advice please
Posted August 11, 2005 - 12:24 PM
First, a bit of background...I do a lot of mixed riding; dunes several times a year, moab a few times a year, some singletrack, some light trail/fireroad. I need a bike with a bit of power for sand/etc, but that will be ok in other areas too. I'm 5'8" with a 29" inseam.
I though I had found the perfect bike in the WR; YZ cam modded, grey wire, JD kit, Scotts stabilizer, protapers, opened up airbox, Q2 w/ powerbomb, etc.
But I'm having a few significant problems with this bike.
First; I drop it; ALL the damn time! In moab several times I put my foot down in nothing but air and ended up dropping it. It's 1/2 because the bike is so top heavy, and 1/2 because it's so tall. If it gets beyond a certain angle (which happens at times because my legs are so short) it's going down, no questions asked. And if it stalls, there really isn't much selection in where I'm going to plant my foot.
Monday at American Fork canyon we were doing a tight singletrack, and I literally had to ask for my buddies help getting the bike out of a few sections because I couldn't get back on the bike to ride it out. And another time, I damn near dropped the bike off the edge of a 200' cliff because I couldn't touch the ground anywhere, and it stalled. REALLY scared me.
Second; it just feels really heavy and tall to me (which it is). I'm not a big guy, but I feel like a kid riding his daddie's bike sometimes. On the real steep sections of the singletrack saturday, there was no option but to ride it (wasn't even near walkable). By the end of a section I'd be hanging on for dear life by the handlebars, feet dangling in the air. Uuuugh. And thank Yamaha for the estart! There is NO way I could have gotten on it and kickstarted it in many of those sections.
So; I guess the problem is that the bike is big, and I am not. It's tall and top heavy.
So, do I deal with it? Sag is set correctly and the suspension is probably not perfect, but shouldn't be too far off. Can't really make it lighter; it's a pig, and that's what the bike is. Can't lower it without totally screwing up the geometry of the suspensions.
Or, do I sell it and get a KTM of which I know nothing about (2" shorter seat height; 36.4 vs the 38.5 of the 04 WR). And then sell all my extra parts (extra front and rear wheels w/ sand tires), filters, a complete jet kit (dang near EVERY jet for the WR), etc? It'd be a huge hit financially, and I"d have to buy everything again. From what I read the reliablity on the KTM is a question mark and it seems to be better w/ the WR; maintenance seems to be worse on the KTM too.
Sigh. I dunno; can anyone give me their opinions?
Posted August 11, 2005 - 12:59 PM
Still, I wonder if the 2 inches would even dramatically reduce the issue at hand. I'd hate to make the swap to find out it didn't even solve the problem. You could consider a 250? They are a bit lighter so easier to save on a lay over.
Or (and I'm not advocating this and mean no disrespect) if the height of the bike is making it uncomfortable/dangerous to ride you could think about a playbike like the ttr230. I sat on one and was flat foot.... I know they lack suspension and power etc but it beats falling off a cliff.
Posted August 11, 2005 - 01:18 PM
Posted August 11, 2005 - 01:55 PM
Posted August 11, 2005 - 02:06 PM
Stealman; I read about the lowerink link here http://www.thumperta...t=lowering link and it didn't sound too positive. Having it saying 'trail riding only' doesn't instill much confidence in the product for me. What if it breaks? I keep reading that it screws up the suspension geometry too, just like putting in too much sag..
Hotthrottle; I just don't tihnk the ttr would get me the power and handling I am used to w/ the WR; I doubt if the WR250 would have enough power for what I like to do.
I guess I could always consider (gasp) a 2smoke... It would be lighter, but I'm not sure about the height.
I also considered the Rekluse, but I hate to keep adding bandaids (expensive ones) and then STILL have the same problems. I've dumped at least $1k into the bike in mods in the last few months, and it depresses me to think that it still isn't what I want.
Posted August 11, 2005 - 02:52 PM
My buddy's got a CR250F that's much lower than my WR450...I think the CRF250X is about the same height as the CR250F. Maybe that's worth looking into....
Posted August 11, 2005 - 03:26 PM
Edogg; I checked out the CRF's online, but their specs say the height of the seat is dang near what ours is already! Plus the valve problems scare me to death; after doing my valves on teh WR, I sure as heck don't want to do THAT every 5-10 hours. Uuugh, that was a PITA.
ISBB; thanks. I am having problems, I wish I knew why!
Posted August 11, 2005 - 03:49 PM
It sounds to me like the main problem you have is dumping it because it is too top heavy for you to hold when it stalls, or when you just lose your balance. I too am not very tall, 5/7, 190lbs. I ride the 02 WR426 and at first I had trouble with the weight too. However, I have found that when I get in trouble usually more throttle gets me right back on track. If you are totally disappointed, I would look at the Honda CRF450 or CRF450X. I have ridden the CRF450 and really like it. I have several friends that have been riding them since 02, and none of them have had any valve trouble at all. I know they are much easier to ride, they feel much lighter(although I don't know the specs), and I think they are head over heals above the WR in the power category. In fact, if I can't get the throttle response on my WR where I want it I will be seriously considering a change to the Honda. Just my two cents, hope this helps.
Posted August 11, 2005 - 04:30 PM
Something else you may want to try, if you are not strong, is go to the gym, when I started riding 5 years ago, after not riding for 20 years, I found out how weak my legs and arms had become, and just how important overall fitness is required for just moderate riding.
Not calling you weak, or insulting you, or anyone else. You just did not mention what your physical shape was.
Posted August 11, 2005 - 05:25 PM
Dont worry mate, hell Im 6' 1 and had trouble adjusting to the hight of the bike on my forst ride so I undestand exactly where you are coming from-it must be hell for sorter guys. Spose I was just lucky though in that as I become more comfortable with the bike I didnt have the problem anymore
Posted August 11, 2005 - 05:31 PM
Posted August 11, 2005 - 05:52 PM
Everything I have read indicates the hp/torque of CRF450X is nominally greater than WR, at best. I figure a bike that will EASILY stand straight up in second gear with a twist of the throttle and no yank on the bars or clutch slap is plenty strong in the woods. Just my .02.
You may also wish to check out trials training center. They will help you develop the best possible low speed balance, so you no longer need to dab. Good luck.
Posted August 11, 2005 - 07:30 PM
Blaster; I should have mentioned my fitness, you are correct. While I'm not in the shape I was 12 years ago in HS (bench pressing 2x my weight, squatting 4x), I am in decent shape. I hit the gym 4x a week, and other than a small beer belly, I don't think I'm out of shape much.
Also should have mentioned; seat IS shaved, as far as I can shave it without sitting on plastic. In fact, probably too much; after Monday's ride, I'm not feeling too great sitting down. ;-)
Joe; funny you brought that up. I've actually been looking at their site for quite a while; but after factoring in the flight to tennessee, cost of classes, rental car, etc; it's easily a $2000+ trip for me. Wish they were closer.
R little; what did it cost you, if you don't mind me asking?
Posted August 11, 2005 - 08:15 PM
Posted August 11, 2005 - 08:33 PM
Posted August 11, 2005 - 08:54 PM