My son....CRF100 vs. CR85

36 replies to this topic
  • 919_250x

Posted November 12, 2005 - 08:53 PM


I know.....don't blast me, the CR85 is a 2 stroke not a thumper but I thought this would be the best place to ask this question: My 12 yr-old son has one year under his belt with a 2002 CFR80(bone stock), he does quite well. The only type of riding we do is trail riding, one of the trails is 24 miles of tight technical trees, mud, and sand. The other trail is 20+ miles of rolling groomed (wide as a car) trail that is fast but not technical at all. He feels that he wants something "bigger, faster, better suspension". I am Honda through and through. He has a good friend who races a 2004 YZ85, and has gone trail riding with us. Of course my son envies his friend on the YZ when he can keep up with me on my 250x. Being in good standing with my Honda dealer, they have a used 2003 CR85(stock) trade-in that they let me bring home for the weekend for my son to tryout. He says he loves it, what kid wouldn't, the thing screams. The concerns that I have is it too much bike for him and is it the wrong bike for the riding that we do. He doesn't like the CRF100 because if the weight and lack of suspension. What's a Dad to do? :applause: We really only have access to Reb, Blue, Yellow, and Green machines. My son is 5'0" 92lbs.
Your opinions are welcomed!

  • johnk408

Posted November 12, 2005 - 09:25 PM


Sounds like a good bike for him honestly, that crf80 has to be god awful slow on those wide open trails.

  • tapoutgrapler

Posted November 13, 2005 - 04:40 AM


We love our CR85R ... but we ride mostly backyard MX and tracks. I would think that the tight technical trails on the CR85 are going to be very hard for him to negotiate if they are as tight as you describe. The CR85R is a race bike ... designed for the track. If he can ride the CR85R then he can easily ride the CRF150. If you get the CRF150, drop one tooth on the CS so he can work the tight stuff.

TOG :applause:

  • apeks74

Posted November 13, 2005 - 04:47 PM


I have been struggling with the same thing. See my thread "Classification Question". My son is 10, but a big 10. He is 5' tall and a solid 125 lbs. I bought him the CRF100F last spring. It was his first bike and he has learned to ride it quite well. The issue is that in 6 months he has outgrown it and really wants the CR85. He wants to start racing so a 2 stroke 85 seems to make sense.

I think your son at his age and size would move right through the 100 in no time. I would not look at a 4 stroke smaller then the CRF150.

The CRF100 is a great bike but just not powerfull enough. We rode today here in NH, beautiful day, and he was getting passed without much effort by a kid on a KX65 and another passed him like he was standing still on a YZ 80.

  • wishihad1

Posted November 13, 2005 - 05:01 PM


i think he could handle the 85

  • 4Strokin it

Posted November 13, 2005 - 05:17 PM


well if its that tight, your probably goin to foul some plugs on the 85...... but if he wants more power look at a rm 85L. they have the most bottom end from a 85(but not a lot).... the powerband also doesnt come on as fast a say a cr or yz. they are pretty much strictly mx bikes......

a crf150 would be a good bike for him except for the wieght factor.....

actauly now that im thinking..... i dont kno if a 85 has a big enough gas tank to last you your 20+ miles of riding that you do... but u can get a bigger gas tank.

if a 85 is completely to much power for him, he will say i dont like that bike dad its to fast. but if it is a little to powerful for him he'll say "dad that bike is great, we should get it!" since kids always want more power

  • CRF50Racer

Posted November 13, 2005 - 05:46 PM


I had a XR100 before... It was good for the trails, and did fine for me.... but then I got my KX100 and realized what suspension really felt like... I say get him the CR85, it will be better for him in the long run... oh, and my XR was had a decent amount of mods done to it.

  • dusk

Posted November 13, 2005 - 06:11 PM


its really up to you.. but he is probably ready for the cr85.. you could get him the 100 but he will grow out of it really quick and want an 85...

  • Yamiha

Posted November 16, 2005 - 02:22 PM


im gonna go with the 85 ive rode them and they are pretty mean...its light...but the only thing would be plugs

  • soylent_green

Posted November 16, 2005 - 02:33 PM


go for the two stroke. At 12, my son got a CR80. We rode long trails and in the desert on that bike, and it did just fine. If he is interested and masters the bike, he can take that bike on the tracks too. He likes the two strokes, and continues to ride them (yz125 at 15 years old).

Visit the ThumperTalk Store for the lowest prices on motorcycle / ATV parts and accessories - Guaranteed
  • suzuki74d

Posted November 18, 2005 - 09:06 PM


if he has been riding an xr80 on 24-mile trails he is so ready for a cr85

  • wishihad1

Posted November 18, 2005 - 09:42 PM


We love our CR85R ... but we ride mostly backyard MX and tracks. I would think that the tight technical trails on the CR85 are going to be very hard for him to negotiate if they are as tight as you describe. The CR85R is a race bike ... designed for the track. If he can ride the CR85R then he can easily ride the CRF150. If you get the CRF150, drop one tooth on the CS so he can work the tight stuff.

TOG :applause:

or get an RM / KX 85 they have more low end then the CR

  • John_Friedichs

Posted November 19, 2005 - 05:17 PM


I took my son down to the local Honda shop to sit on a CR85, he is lusting over the upside down forks, nitrogen shock, and disc brakes. He can touch both feet down, but not flat footed. I just don't think that he will be happy on the two stroke, riding the trails we ride, Brown Mt., Brushy Mt., Hatfield McCoy, etc. these have some fairly narley trails, steep up hills, etc. He started on a XR50, traded up to a XR80, and now on a XR100.
I've checked around and Honda of Charlotte NC has two 2003 left overs for $1995, brand new!
I wish someone manufactured a four stroke for kids, with real suspension and real brakes. I know BBR has this, but they are too expensive for a 12 year old that will out grow them, heck there too expensive for me.

  • alcc

Posted November 21, 2005 - 04:21 PM


I am in the same boat some of you guys are in. My son (11) has been riding CRF100 for about 8 months now and has pretty much mastered it. Now he is wanting more power/suspension and honestly the 100 is slow and the suspension needs a lot of help. Its just a play bike. We ride a lot of trails with few wide open spaces. Mostly woods trials with many hill climbs. We occasionlly visit the track, but 100 does not take the jumps very well. The 150 will be too heavy. I think the key is which one of the 4 major MX 80/85's bikes is better on the trails? More low end and want foul plugs easily.

  • tapoutgrapler

Posted November 21, 2005 - 04:29 PM


I think the key is which one of the 4 major MX 80/85's bikes is better on the trails? More low end and want foul plugs easily.

Well ... to be honest, the CR85 (stock) does not have very much low end ... and, if you don't keep the RPMs up then you will foul plugs (I bought them 6 at a time when we first got it). However, maybe with a smaller front sprocket or larger rear you could fix some of that. Now ... my guess is that all of the MX bikes above will have similar problems.

Maybe, you could purchase a used 85 and work from there ... then, you would not have 2.5K tied up in a new race bike ... because, that is what they are ... race bikes.

TOG :applause:

  • kawirider

Posted November 21, 2005 - 04:41 PM


It is all about having fun. Get him what he has the most fun on. Just take him around the well groomed trails for a couple rides and once you think he is really used to it, take it on the tighter trails. If he can ride an 85 and like it, he wont want to ride anything else. If you are going to get it for him make sure you tell him "You cant complain when some hills and trails are really hard. If this is the bike you want I will get it for you, but you cant complaing when it does not suit the kind of riding we do" Make sure to really stress that, so that you dont take flak for it later.

  • PumpkinHumper

Posted November 23, 2005 - 05:49 PM


Ya know I just seen in one of the dirt rags an add for a europe only model of a YZF150. Its a thumper for the 85 class. I am wondering if next year we may start seeing some new kids thumpers out on the market.

I would get the CR85 for your kid. You can always put a flywheel weight on it to tame it down and make it easier to ride in the nasty's. Spend a day getting the jetting and float level right and it should be good to go. If you need more fuel range then get a # plate tank from Acerbis to extend the range. If he likes the 2-stroke and can handle it ok them why not get it for him. Its 2x the bike that the CRF100 is. It will also teach him control. The 2-stroke is a lot pipier than a thumper. He will have to learn to control the power in the diff conditions.

  • k2rider

Posted November 27, 2005 - 09:38 PM


Well, my son is older but is smaller than the rest of your kids. My son is on an XR80 now and unless somebody comes out witha 125 or 150 4 stroke, his next bike will be a 2 stroke 85.

I say get him the 85 and let him rip it up!!!

  • 919_250x

Posted November 30, 2005 - 06:17 PM


Well.....thank you for your informative responses!
The weekend that we brought the CR85 home, I think I had more fun with the bike than my son did. :ride: That thing really hauls a$$.

Here's the OLD: :p which is now for sale.

Here's the new: :applause:

Yes it's in the garage. He got to ride it for a complete weekend but now it is hockey season and tonight it is 18 degreesF, he (and I) cannot wait until it gets a little warmer. March-ish.

Thanks again for your comments!

  • jmccool

Posted December 02, 2005 - 09:46 PM


isn't there some type of heavy flywheel mod you can do to a two stroke to let it run better at lower rpm's?

Related Content


Honda CRF100F 2017 by Chris.GVS

Honda CRF100F 2017
  • - - - - -
  • 0 reviews

Top Speed of an XR200 by Yamiha

Dirt Bike   Make / Model Specific   Honda   XR/CRF 80-200
  • Hot  49 replies

2003 honda xr100 key switch by Alangray33

Dirt Bike   Make / Model Specific   Honda   XR/CRF 80-200
  • 8 replies

Honda CRF100F 2016 by Chris.GVS

Honda CRF100F 2016
  • - - - - -
  • 0 reviews

CR 230F Making it Street Legal with the best Speedometer by crfer2

Dirt Bike   Make / Model Specific   Honda   CRF 150/230 F/L
  • Hot  35 replies

Join Our Community!

Even if you don't want to post, registered members get access to tools that make finding & following the good stuff easier.

If you enjoyed reading about "" here in the ThumperTalk archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join ThumperTalk today!

The views and opinions expressed on this page are strictly those of the author, and have not been reviewed or approved by ThumperTalk.