Can a WR450 compete w/ 2-stroke in the woods?


20 replies to this topic
  • firffighter

Posted January 18, 2010 - 08:33 AM

#1

I know this has been bantered about in the past, but I was just wanting to get some good input from those who have ridden both in tight woods conditions.

Having owned several KTM 2-strokes, including (2) 200exc's, a 250 mxc, and a Gasgas EC250, I have to say that I quite enjoy the big thumper in the woods.

IMHO, I feel much busier on the 2-strokes and I have to admit that even though I have ridden 2-strokes almost exclusively for several years, I am still not that great at brake/clutch, especially when cornering.

I spend less time shifting and braking on the 4-stroke and spend more time concentrating on the trail itself. I also like the ability to lug up tough hills and over obstacles with the thumper.

Now, it does not slice and dice like the 2-stokes through the trees, but I think it makes up for things in other places.

Maybe it just comes down to rider style.

Any thoughts.

BTW, I currently own a '06 WR450 and a '03 Gasgas EC250.

  • jayh300

Posted January 18, 2010 - 08:54 AM

#2

06 WR450 and a 01 gasgas ec300....

the first few rides on the wr, i had a lot of learning issues. the 300 was un stallable (imo) and I got pretty lazy clutch wise. A regear from suggestions on here and a bump in idle and that wr is very good, and alot of time working on clutch and stall points..

i would agree with your thoughts on the slice and dice. and yes i can throw around the 300 a little easier, but the lugability of the 450 and the pure low end power is sure hard to beat... plus the wheelies in any gear at any speed is pretty fun too...

sure not ready to get rid of the gasgas... it is a very good bike, but the wr is growing on me and the estart is awesome...

just a trail rider... no racing for me
jay

  • tribalbc

Posted January 18, 2010 - 09:16 AM

#3

Well all we have in BC is tight woods. Rode and raced two strokes for years and 4 strokes in more recent years with the odd 2 stroke.
As you say, it's all a personal preference riding style. I prefer smooth and flowing,riding a gear tall and minimizing wheel spin, though I still love to brake slide corners. For this a 4 stroke suits my style. I also prefer in big rock and root terrain the 4 strokes ability to hold it's line and not deflect so much.
2 strokes are great fun, and I love them as a play bike. I just find in the end of a 3hr race I'm more worn out from a 2 stroke and the on again off again riding style. Light weight and no engine braking is there plus, usable powerband there minus.
In the end if I could afford two bikes I'd have both (there was a time) but if I can only afford one bike it will be a big 4 stroke.

  • firffighter

Posted January 18, 2010 - 03:03 PM

#4

I only do an occasional race and dont try to compete at that, so most of my time is "fast" paced trail riding.

My WR is set up perfectly for woods with gearing, jetting, free mods, etc. plus has all of the wood protection. I live in Oregon, so rocks, roots, and slime are the norm here as well. The thumper seems to tractor better and I can ride a bit lazier on it. My WR is really a hard to stall bike and so lugging is never an issue.

I agree that after a long day in the saddle (2+ hrs. on most rides), I like the WR. I really never notice the weight unless I am stuck or dump the bike.

But, there are times that ripping on a 2-stroke is just so much fun!

  • Butta

Posted January 18, 2010 - 06:28 PM

#5

Well all we have in BC is tight woods. Rode and raced two strokes for years and 4 strokes in more recent years with the odd 2 stroke.
As you say, it's all a personal preference riding style. I prefer smooth and flowing,riding a gear tall and minimizing wheel spin, though I still love to brake slide corners. For this a 4 stroke suits my style. I also prefer in big rock and root terrain the 4 strokes ability to hold it's line and not deflect so much.
2 strokes are great fun, and I love them as a play bike. I just find in the end of a 3hr race I'm more worn out from a 2 stroke and the on again off again riding style. Light weight and no engine braking is there plus, usable powerband there minus.
In the end if I could afford two bikes I'd have both (there was a time) but if I can only afford one bike it will be a big 4 stroke.


I'm fortunate enough to have both, an '03 YZ250 2T and a '05 WR450. They are both similar in capabilities, but speak different languages. I find myself choosing the YZ for the day rides and tight single track, but for any length of pavement or frequent refuel stops I choose the WR....or, if it goes into the night... Both my bikes are street titled, but the lighting on the WR is far superior. Having the GPS hard-wired on the WR is also a plus. However, the fun, light, zippiness of the YZ is just downright hard to beat!! Fun factor through the roof!

  • redhurricane

Posted January 19, 2010 - 07:56 AM

#6

Another vote for 4 stroke. Went from a YZ250 2T to an 06 WR450. Found the bike to be more to my liking.

Positives:
e-start
better fuel mileage/no premix mess
more low end grunt so less clutch work

Negatives
WR loses in the weight category.


Some will say that the lighter bike is more suitable for tight stuff, I'd disagree. even with the heavier bike I am less fatigued on long rides with the 4T.

  • Bandit9

Posted January 19, 2010 - 12:24 PM

#7

Racing=2 stroke
When it comes time to get serious, I'll be a 2 stroke.

Trail riding Dual Sporting=4 stroke

  • 1talbotj

Posted January 19, 2010 - 01:08 PM

#8

i own a 2005 wr450, i found in the tight new england woods i could never get out of first gear so i dropped a tooth on the front cog and now my 1st gear is low enough to be able to shift in the woods and climb up trees...i can ride all day throwin the bike around, the only issue for me is not having fuel injection...its a bitch after long winters of storage up here...

  • TimberMountainRider

Posted January 19, 2010 - 01:10 PM

#9

I know this has been bantered about in the past, but I was just wanting to get some good input from those who have ridden both in tight woods conditions.

Having owned several KTM 2-strokes, including (2) 200exc's, a 250 mxc, and a Gasgas EC250, I have to say that I quite enjoy the big thumper in the woods.

IMHO, I feel much busier on the 2-strokes and I have to admit that even though I have ridden 2-strokes almost exclusively for several years, I am still not that great at brake/clutch, especially when cornering.

I spend less time shifting and braking on the 4-stroke and spend more time concentrating on the trail itself. I also like the ability to lug up tough hills and over obstacles with the thumper.

Now, it does not slice and dice like the 2-stokes through the trees, but I think it makes up for things in other places.

Maybe it just comes down to rider style.

Any thoughts.

BTW, I currently own a '06 WR450 and a '03 Gasgas EC250.

think you answered this yourself...it is all about the rider! Rider preference...

  • boldigin

Posted January 24, 2010 - 06:37 PM

#10

I own both bikes right now.
I went from a 2003 wr250f to a 2007 wr450f looking for more power.
But i hated the weight. So i bought a cheap yz250.
On the more open dual sport trials i love the wr450 but dont like the yz250.
On the tight nasty stuff i love the yz250 but dont like the wr450.
It all depends on your riding style.

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  • firffighter

Posted January 25, 2010 - 05:20 PM

#11

There are times I really like the thumper even when things are tight and tough.

Even though the 2-stroke is light, it can deflect when hitting rocks, roots, etc. and you have to be a little quicker on the clutch.

The thumper though is planted and torques up and over things easy. (The magic button can be nice too!).

There are always trade offs for sure, but Yamaha has sure put together a nice package in terms of useable power, suspension and handling.

I just hate the darned chain slap!

  • jayh300

Posted January 26, 2010 - 07:10 AM

#12

i have read, on here, the fix for the chain slap is to run a bead of silicone under the chain guide on the swing arm.... have not tried that yet either. mine is pretty loud too..

  • Navaho6

Posted January 26, 2010 - 07:45 AM

#13

The tighter it gets, the more I prefer a two-stroke. In more open terrain or nasty hill climbs, I prefer the WR450.

I prefer the WR more for easy riding. Less clutch work and wide power band. Like Firffighter said, the WR is more stable over rocks - doesn't deflect as much.
But if I were to get serious about going fast, I'd be on a two-stroke again. I learned to ride on a two-stroke and find the lighter weight easier to handle since I'm only 165lb.

  • firffighter

Posted January 26, 2010 - 03:09 PM

#14

We certainly have some very tight, nasty, "bike and hike" terrain here in Oregon, but the older I get, the less I like riding in that nasty of conditions. But, I agree, that in the really tough stuff, the 2-stroke can work amazing.

I feel that in more flowing terrain though, I can make the WR haul. Like I mentioned before, I am able to concentrate more on the trail than the clutch, brake, throttle.

Maybe I am just getting old and I dont get out as much as I would like, so I tend to find myself lilking the WR for 95% of my riding and at 200+ lbs. it seems to be the perfect fit.

  • ASternad

Posted January 26, 2010 - 05:02 PM

#15

My buddy is getting back into ridding and wants a 250 2-smoke, I said no way you'll shoot your eye out, get a 4stroke. But after looking at 02 KX's & YZ's (Way Cheap), I find myself wanting one too, cause they are so light and fun (for the first 90min). I just hope he get's something soon, so I don't end up buying a Buddy Bike (only reason I could come up with so far).

  • ch_250

Posted January 26, 2010 - 06:49 PM

#16

i started in a two stroke and now have an 01 wr 426. I've ridden almost exclusively trails. The guy i bought the wr from complained it was too heavy and he couldn't make it turn. He was probly a bit shy of 6 feet and about 165 lbs. I'm 6'4 and 210. I can throw it around and slam in and out of corners like i never used to do with my 2 stroke. the deflection thing is deffinitely true. the wr keeps it's line with ease and it's a tractor. What more could you want in trails? I think the power of the bike offsets the weight. the power is over such a wide range it gives you more options. I've also done jumps over 70 feet with my wr and i can't say it's too heavy to me. My conclusion is that if you're big enough for the bike, the four stroke is easier to ride and potentially faster. i'm sticking with my 4 stroke

  • MathProf

Posted January 27, 2010 - 09:19 AM

#17

I have owned and raced both. I have also won on both.

The YZ 250 was much easier to race and I could ride harder longer. I trail-rode the yz and it was great, but it couldn't be made street legal.

I found out that if you want to race, buy a race bike. I really wore out the WR fast and it wasn't as reliable on long trail rides.

One bike can't do both well.

If you want to "ride" a race the WR will do fine, but you are serious about competing the WR won't work well enough.

  • Butta

Posted January 27, 2010 - 07:12 PM

#18

The YZ 250 was much easier to race and I could ride harder longer. I trail-rode the yz and it was great, but it couldn't be made street legal.


I've got an '03 YZ250 street titled/plated......with the WR 3-5th gears, 55 on asphault is easily doable..

  • elcubeo

Posted January 28, 2010 - 07:33 AM

#19

I hated 2 strokes 'til i rode them. My main beef with the wr450 in the woods is when its muddy and i'm too much of a sissy to muscle it around. Some of the stronger guys may hot have this problem. I raced a snotty muddy disgusting HS race on my TM125en and loved the lack of weight and lack of violence. I understand the smooth enduro 125 bike is very very unique, i have not ridden many 2t machines with this power character. I finished better with more energy. I actually holeshotted over 30 riders on the start because of my uncompromising traction! I came in second behind my buddy's CR250r, actually, but thats pretty damn cool for something with a 54mm piston up against open cc's.

IF its dry or rocky or hilly, WR450F all the way! If you can utilize power that hurts your body just to hang on, then twist your hand and pour it on. If you need a little mass to maintain a line over loose rough rocks, let it float right through. If theres room to pass and you said your prayers, you won't be beaten in a drag race. If theres a hill, light it up and hang on....you just better not lug the motor too much. Even with the huge oem flywheel it will not hesitate to cough out and slug you in the jewels as it comes to a stop. Maybe a Rekluse would be the equalizer. I am budgeting for one this season.

  • firffighter

Posted January 28, 2010 - 09:36 AM

#20

I agree. My Gasgas EC250 has an amazing motor for woods. It puts power to the ground very well and will lug better than the WR.

I dont know if anyone has noticed a similar trend in their area, but most of the guys who ran out and bought thumpers 5-10 years ago are now going back to 2-strokes. I keep hearing things like ease of maintainance, light weight, and most of all FUN.

I will have to admit that the 2-stroke is more "FUN" than the thumper and in certain situations can be much less tiring.




 
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