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deadeyedick

XR to WR

35 posts in this topic

I've been searching for a new bike for the last while. I curerntly ride a 1989 XR250. I'm 5'8 and a buck fiddy. I've been riding consistantly for the last 7 years, off and on the past 23. I mostly ride tight trails up in the mountains about twice a year i go to the desert which here in oregon you get wide open and tight high desert volcanic trails. I'm 5'8 and a buck fiddy.

I'm considering a few bikes

XR 400 : Tricked out with 440, supension upgrades, maybe a cam.

WR's 250, bore it out to 280 or whatever the size is.

400, 426, 450 : keep em stock, maybe a pipe or mx rear fender, skid plate.

Or perhaps a YZF 400, 426, 450: Heavier flywheel and WR cam.

I'm trying to get a bike that fits my riding tendancies the best. I know how an XR 400 handles, it's just heavier and more power.

I was looking to get some input from you Blue riders. Are the WR's good for this type of riding or do they like more open terain? Can a YZF be made into a decent woods bike (don't realy care about the lights)?

Any info you guys could give me would be great as i have never ridden the newer designed fourstrokes (can't realy count a new XR as a new design). Any suggestions on what model would be the best bet with regards to issues, pros and cons would be appreciated.

I'll have a chance to ride a yzf426 (all stock) in the near future but I'm not sure if that will give me an accurate comparison to what I'm after.

Thx

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The WR426 is a great bike for desert or single track. My brother inlaws bought yzf426 and yz450 heres the break down. Right out of the hole the yz's rock but once they have toped out the WR walks by them no problem thanks to the wide ratio tranny. 2. The YZ's first gear is too tall for tight single track espeacially on the YZ450 you can not bog it down for creaping through the woods as where the WR is great at it. As for suspention my WR426 will go through mean whoops no problem with stock suspention I am 5'8" and 200lbs. The yz is a better track bike but for woods and desert riding I would go with a WR426. Going from a xr to the WR is a whole different riding experience. No comparison. If you have the chance ride one before you buy. I had an Xr650l. I sold it for the WR426

The WR is a mean machine.

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:cry:, I have a couple of buddies I ride with that both have XR250's, the are durable bikes, but an incident when we were climbing gravel piles, (crushed rocks for road building) they'd have to get a run and be in 3rd gear, shoot up the side and bog down, knocking it first into second gear, then tapping it into first gear and just nudged ofer the top, I cruise the base of the gravel pile with my old WR426F and in second gear, lugging, would twist the throttle right at the base, no run and shoot up to the top having to apply brake so I didnt shoot off the top literally skidded toward the top as I has so much momentum. I now ride a new 04 WR450F and IMHO, these bikes are "king of the woods" and pretty close in the wide open deserts, though, I dont see much wide open desert. They have high compression ratio which give them gobs of power, 5 titanium valve for superior breathing, thus, even more power. If you get a WR, you'll throw rocks at all the others, never go back! :cry: I've ridden a 04 KTM450EXC and my WR's (even my old 426F) had more power, though, the KTM frame/suspension is tough to beat. But the difference in price, you could do a lot to the WR and still be able to get parts quickly. I get all my parts online, never see the dealers, not because I dont like them, my days off are the same days the dealers are usually closed, ie sun-mon. :cry:

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I went from an xr 200 and and xl350 to a wr400, whole different world, I test rode a couple before I bought it and still found myself relearning things. The Wr doesnt like it when you get lazy, but it has soooo much more power. The grin factor can be beat, oh yeah, your ass will hate you for the first few months when you get a new one.

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Thanks for the Info guys

Are their any things to look out for when buying the WR's? For example problems with certain years or things to look for that could be wrong with the bike. Is their anything that needs to be done to thees bikes if the previous owner or dealer has not done to them?

Thanks

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For your size and height, I'd look at the WR250's over the 450's. I'm 5'7" and had the 2001 WR426 and it's pretty top heavy and tall. The 250 is plenty fast and has as much hp as the XR400 with better suspension. It would be a nice upgrade to your XR250.

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check and see that the free hop ups were done, the newer ones seem to have better ergos, at least up in my neck of the woods, water in the bearings is a big concern, the previous owner powerwashed it alot, i had to put in new bearings in the stearing head, and new front wheel.

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'03's had starter problems, you want to upgrade them to '04 specs. aside from that, no specific problems.

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Is their a huge difference between a WR400 and a WR 450? Or 426 for that matter.

I know their is an electric start and the larger bore will have some more power but what about ergonomics, weight ridability?

thanks

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I was in the same boat as you are about 6 months ago. About 7 years ago my buddies got me into riding and I bought an old 83 XL250. It was a tank but it was great beginner bike. After about a year I wanted a newer bike so I bought a 94 XR250. There were no XR400s back then and, being a trailer rider, the XR650 was not a good fit. Anyhow, I got to be a better and better rider and soon found myself wanting/NEEDING a bigger bike. At the time I was getting married, buying a house, getting my career going so $4000+/- on a new bike was not a good move. Anyhow, last spring I had had enough of my XR250. It was, plain and simply, not powerful enough. After much research I boiled it down to two types of bikes XR400 and WR400/426/450. I rode a buddies XR400 and it was a nice bike but my gut told me that, as I became a better rider, I would out grow it, too. To make a long story (and alot of research, asking questions, reading TT, etc.) shorter, I found a NEW 01 WR426 on the Internet in a different state (at a Yamaha dealer)and, since the price was right, I bought it. The first time I rode it on the dirt my buddy with the XR400 was with me and after a while we switched bikes. I was able to ride the bike that I bought and the type of bike that I ALMOST bought back-to-back. Let me tell you, there is absolutely no comparison. NONE, NADA, ZILCH. I am not just saying that - it is true. The WR is a far superior bike. Personally, I ride MUCH faster, feel MUCH safer (knock on wood) and, most importantly, have much more fun on the WR. (I consider myself an intermediate rider (definitely far from advanced) with a lot more to learn about riding)

As many TT'ers told me, (and I since found out) don't waste your money on an XR - you'll regret it. Stick with the new technology of the WR.

I think the question you should be asking is what size WR to buy. I have a 01 426 and it is a tall bike (I am 6'05" 245 lbs. - do you see why I hated my XR250?) so it fits me well. Although, it is an easy bike to ride. I was a little nervous about the rumored power but after 1 ride on the dirt I realized it was totaly untrue. The bike is easier to ride than my XR250. I always felt like my front tire is going to wash out on the XR250 (my buddies XR400 was the same way) but not with the WR - the suspension eats everything up.

Anyhow, PM me if you have any questions. TT'ers were a tremendous help when I was deciding what kind of bike to get and I would love to return the favor.

Tree

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I am also thinking of getting a new(er) bike. Just sold my XR600R and am thinking of either the XR650R or the WR426/450. I ride woods and desert singletrack, jeep roads and even fire roads and would need a license plate (easy here in AZ), I'm an intermediate rider with limited riding time (6'3" 205lbs). I also ride with my kids a lot. I am used to having a bulletproof bike (low maintenance and almost no repair). Have read quite a bit about the 03 WR450 and the woodruff key issues (I understand a lot has to do with the jetting being too lean). Also had a discussion with an acquaintance of mine about his WR400(98 OR 99 I think he said). He had a portion of the carb slide break off and go through his engine. Not much damage to the engine but almost $1000 for a new carb??? Can I comfortably ride a WR all day, say 125 miles as easy as my XR? Or is the nature of the WR too aggressive? Sounds like a WR426 is about 25 lbs lighter than the XR650R but is it too much for my needs???? :cry: I do like big power!! :cry: But I'm not sure I need a 12,000 RPM bike.

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I have just switched up from an XR400 with alot of mods to it to a 2002 WR426 and the biggest thing u will notice is the suspension. I think a really moded out XR400 will put out 40 horses and a stock wr426 puts out something like 43 in its califonia mode which from what i have read is extremeley restrictive so there is deffiantly more room for improvement. Too me(and many others may dissagree) up to about 6000 rpm i cant tell the diffrence between the 2 and right off the bottom i might go out on a limb and say the xr will pull a little harder. But from that point on the xr flat lines and the wr still has plenty left. The suspesnion is not even close i spent close to 500 bucks on the suspension on my xr and its suck compared to the stock wr suspension. But i cant get used to the riding postion of the WR. I am alot more comfortable on the XR then I am on My WR and the past three times i have ridden it I have been more timmid becasue it just feels diffrent. I am sure though after some more seat time it will be a badass bike. My best advice would be get the WR even though the XR400 might be one of the best trail bikes ever made the WR is just sweet

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I had a 01 WR426F that was YZ timed, did make gobs of power. Bought a brand new 04 WR450F and I really like the WR timed cam. If i know know how much easier it would be to ride traisl, I'd swapped the 426 back to WR timing long ago. My 426 made gobs of power and no one liked riding behind me, it would roost in "yards", but was a little clumsy it tight trails, I had to "fan" the clutch a little more. Now with my WR450, it just pulls prerfect right off idle. I'm not a high speed rider and I dont use real high RPMs and I know my 450 wil lack a little up higher, but for me, this new package is perfect. I went witht he WR because I wanted a dirt bike with a headlamp/tail lamp, easy to get parts for if needed and it makes gobs of power. Even if I dont need it all, I just liek having it. Its just an "American" thing I guess. If you get the XR400, it willhave power, but when you get used to it, it will feel down on power and all the big WR's will shred that XR400, eat it for lunch! These are only my opinions, but i base them in first hand experience, for what its worth. I'm not brand loyal,since 2001, I boughten 2 new Kawasakis, 1 Suzuki , 3 Yamahas, 1 Honda , sold some, still have the others. See, I'm unbiased! :cry:

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In my opinion, you will grow out of the XR400. At 6'03" you probably have the inseam height to accomodate the taller seat of the older WR's (I believe I read somewhere that the '05 is dropping a couple inches in the seat).

I thought that the WR might be too big/fast for me, as I am not a high-speed rider and like riding single track trails and fireroads up to back country lakes.

The seat it not and "comfy" as my XR but I would rather spend $80 on a gel seat then spend $500+ on suspension plus $$$ to re-bore so that it will accomodate my increasing riding skills and demands.

I bought a 01 WR426 after SERIOUSLY considering the XR400. I am SO glad that I bought the WR. Like I said on my previous post my buddy has an XR and, although I would never tell him this, after riding his bike and mine right after each other I felt a HUGE relief knowing that I had absolutley bought the right bike.

Regarding the XR650: I rode one before and in my opinion it is too heavy and has too much torque for tight single track trails.

Give serious thought to the WR's you will not regret it. However you may eventually regret the XR.

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I've got an '04 450 for sale if you're interested :cry:

I'm in Oregon too, did I mention it's street legal? :cry:

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Just wanted to mention that the WR250f is significantly lighter but doesn't have a lower seat height compared to the 4xx.

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I am also thinking of getting a new(er) bike. Just sold my XR600R and am thinking of either the XR650R or the WR426/450. I ride woods and desert singletrack, jeep roads and even fire roads and would need a license plate (easy here in AZ), I'm an intermediate rider with limited riding time (6'3" 205lbs). I also ride with my kids a lot. I am used to having a bulletproof bike (low maintenance and almost no repair). Have read quite a bit about the 03 WR450 and the woodruff key issues (I understand a lot has to do with the jetting being too lean). Also had a discussion with an acquaintance of mine about his WR400(98 OR 99 I think he said). He had a portion of the carb slide break off and go through his engine. Not much damage to the engine but almost $1000 for a new carb??? Can I comfortably ride a WR all day, say 125 miles as easy as my XR? Or is the nature of the WR too aggressive? Sounds like a WR426 is about 25 lbs lighter than the XR650R but is it too much for my needs???? :cry: I do like big power!! :cry: But I'm not sure I need a 12,000 RPM bike.

For what you are looking for and the riding you mention the 650R would be a logical progression, with unsurpassed reliability and power. It feels much more nimble then the old 600, particularly in the single track and is more stable and composed as the speeds progress. After five years with one I'm looking to trade also and have been considering the WR-450. But having ridden a few, the WR400/450 series just doesn't feel 25 lbs lighter then the 650R. At least up until now perhaps. The actual weight figure isn't bad, but they carry it rather high. Don't flame me, check out :

http://www.cagivausa.com/Media/CycleWorld/cw-6-04.pdf

From what I'm hearing about the updates to the 2005, Yamaha is addressing this issue, and it might finally be the one for me, with some serious effort to lower the weight from a C of G perspective. If apples are being compared to apples, the 244 lb 05' wr450 is about ten pounds lighter then the soon to be released CRF450X Honda! They have my attention! Check out http://www.dirtrider.com/tests/offroad/141_0406_2005wr/

:cry: We'll see!

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I'd be HIGHLY surprised if the WR450 weighs 244 dry this year. They said 245 lbs. last year and the bike weighed closer to 255 lbs. or the same as the new CRF450X.

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indy tells me that yamaha excludes the tire weight in their dry weight listing. my 04 wr450stock full of oil and coolant no gas weighed 269 the maxxis tires i put on are a couple lbs heavier(so an actual stock # might be around 267). but after weight reduction therapy its down to 253 w/o gas. :cry:

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