Have Enduro bikes evolved in the past 20-years?
I recently asked a local Husqvarna dealer: Which of his bikes he felt provided the most bang for the buck in the dirt? He responded that, if he was down to one bike for personal use, it would probably be the Husqvarna WR125.
off-road contingency support.
The U.S. 2-stroke Enduro market is currently dominated by European manufacturers: KTM/Husaberg, Husqvarna, GasGas, TM, Beta. With only the KTM 150XC, and the Husqvarna WR125 catering to the U.S. small-bore 2-stroke Enduro market.
With the exception of the 2013 Yamaha YZ125, and the minis (KX100, RM85, YZ85); the Japanese manufacturers have given up on 2-strokes for the US Market; and have not produced a 2-stroke Enduro bike since the '06 KDX200, '98RMX250, and '97WR250.
Bump on any debate on 4-strokes vs. 2-strokes... or the KTM200EXC vs. a YZ144... or if a 144cc overbore is worth gaining 2HP :rofl
The KTM 150XC and the WR125 (comes w/ 144cc kit) engines are derived from the 125cc engine. Both use a single-backbone CrMo steel frame. A fuel-tank that saddles the single-tube backbone often provides a lower center-of gravity than a perimeter style frame.
I did a bit of research to find a Japanese dirt bike that was similar to the current Husqvarna WR125 design: CrMo Single-tube backbone (similar dimensions and steering geometry); 2-stroke motor ('square' bore x stroke) with reed valve intake, mechanical exhaust power valve; open-cartridge USD forks.
:eek1 The 1997 Honda CR125R was the last year of the CrMo frame and arguably had the most powerful CR125 engine ever made. Honda ceased making 2-stroke dirt bikes in 2007. Yamaha still imports the YZ125. Although still available outside the USA; by 2007 Kawasaki and Suzuki stopped importing the KX and RM model.
Yamaha YZ125 '96 to '01 steel frame (Green Sticker) and '05 to current '13 aluminum frame (Red Sticker) are the most popular 125cc for Enduro conversion. Many say the YZ motor is the 'most-tractable' or 'least peaky', but in the 125cc context that observation may be relative. Common mods are a Steahly flywheel weight, and Athena 144cc big-bore kit. '02-'04 YZ125 had a 5-speed transmission. Punt on debate on 5-speed vs. 6-speed. The YZ PSS suspension is considered much more 'sophisticated' than the KTM or Husqvarna components. 'Sophisticated' may be in the MX context and not the off-road/trail environment.
The KX125 were imported until '07, RM125 were imported to the US until '08. Both the KX125 and RM125 had steel frames. Regarding weight difference: AMA rules is the primary driver. KTM linkage-less PDS suspension and steel frame design produced lighter bikes. As far as motors: the Hybrid sub-culture of KX engines in CR frames may be a indicator of best of breed.
A 125cc 2-stroke Enduro hasn't evolved much in the past 20-years. Explanations: Manufacturer R&D investment in 2-stroke technology; limitations in weight, suspension, and chassis design for the off-road environment: ability to effectively put HP/Torque to the ground in a wide range of traction conditions.
So what's all this chatter on the dirt-bike forums about 2-strokes making a come-back? ( do you follow Superhunky? ) KTM/Husaberg leads in 2-stroke R&D investment. Yamaha seems to still be committed as they were in the 70's vs. Honda 4-stroke bias; but the YZ line changes at a glacial pace relative to KTM. Husqvarna simply has less R&D funds, so they reuse technology from their emission compliant models: as a result some of the Husqvarna technology is criticized as a little long in the tooth. Comparing the differences between a 20-year old 2-stroke 125cc motocrosser and a current Husqvarna WR125 seems to be appropriate.
125cc 2-strokes are arguably much less expensive to rebuild than their 4-stroke brethren. 125cc 2-strokes are easy to find since most riders are trading-up to 250cc 4-strokes. In California: Green-sticker 2-strokes are the most desirable. I hit CraigsList and discovered that a pre-aluminum perimeter frame Honda CR125 can be found for under $1000.
Is a Japanese 125cc 2-stroke viable for Enduros (F.I.M. E1 class)? For the 'Hobby class' in Europe a used 125cc MX bike modified (lighting kit, protection) for Enduros are very common, and may provide an inexpensive alternative. Note: Although proven on the 250cc engines, the debate continues on the advantage of flywheel weight on the 125cc engines. For similar reasons, a gutless bottom-end that is difficult to improve, FMF doesn't market a Gnarly pipe for the 1/8 liter bikes. Just fan the clutch and keep the revs in the powerband!
The similarities between a 2013 Husqvarna WR125 and a 1992-1997 Honda CR125R are quite revealing:
<table class="stg_table tborder"><tbody><tr class="alt2"><td>Model:</td><td>Husqvarna WR125</td><td>Honda CR125R</td></tr><tr class="alt1"><td>Year:</td><td>2013</td><td>1997</td></tr><tr class="alt2"><td>Category:</td><td>Enduro / offroad</td><td>Cross / motocross</td></tr><tr class="alt1"><td>Price as new (MSRP):</td><td>US$ 5999. Prices depend on country, taxes, accessories, etc.</td><td>
</td></tr><tr class="alt2"><td>Engine and transmission</td><td>
</td></tr><tr class="alt1"><td>Displacement:</td><td>124.82 ccm (7.62 cubic inches)</td><td>124.82</td></tr><tr class="alt2"><td>Engine type:</td><td>Single cylinder, two-stroke</td><td>Single cylinder, two-stroke</td></tr><tr class="alt1"><td>Engine details:</td><td>Power valve with mechanical control on the exhaust port.</td><td>
</td></tr><tr class="alt2"><td>Bore x stroke:</td><td>54.0 x 54.5 mm (2.1 x 2.1 inches)</td><td>54.0 x 54.5</td></tr><tr class="alt1"><td>Compression Ratio</td><td>8.8:1</td><td>8.8:1</td></tr><tr class="alt2"><td>Fuel system:</td><td>Carburetor. Mikuni TMX38 Carburetor</td><td>Keihin PJ36</td></tr><tr class="alt1"><td>Cooling system:</td><td>Liquid</td><td>Liquid</td></tr><tr class="alt2"><td>Transmission type,</td><td>Chain</td><td>Chain</td></tr><tr class="alt1"><td>final drive:</td><td>
</td></tr><tr class="alt2"><td>Clutch:</td><td>Multi plate, cable operation</td><td>Multi plate, cable operation</td></tr><tr class="alt1"><td>Driveline:</td><td>6 speed constant mesh</td><td>6 speed constant mesh</td></tr><tr class="alt2"><td>Chassis, suspension, brakes and wheels</td><td>
</td></tr><tr class="alt1"><td>Frame type:</td><td>Chromoly single tube frame cradle utilizes rounded-rectangle elliptical tubing.</td><td>
</td></tr><tr class="alt2"><td>Rake (fork angle):</td><td>26.5°</td><td>26.15</td></tr><tr class="alt1"><td>Trail:</td><td>110 mm (4.33 inches)</td><td>4.1</td></tr><tr class="alt2"><td>Front suspension:</td><td>48mm Kayaba USD fork</td><td>46mm Kayaba USD</td></tr><tr class="alt1"><td>Front suspension travel:</td><td>300 mm (11.8 inches)</td><td>12.2</td></tr><tr class="alt2"><td>Rear suspension:</td><td>Sachs single shock with remote reservoir, adjustable spring preload, compression and rebound damping.</td><td>Kayaba Pro-Link Kayaba single shock with spring preload, 20-position rebound damping, 8-position (low-speed) and 2-turn (high-speed) compression damping adjustability</td></tr><tr class="alt1"><td>Rear suspension travel:</td><td>295 mm (11.6 inches)</td><td>12.6</td></tr><tr class="alt2"><td>Front tyre dimensions:</td><td>90/90-21</td><td>80/100-21</td></tr><tr class="alt1"><td>Rear tyre dimensions:</td><td>120/90-18</td><td>100/90-19</td></tr><tr class="alt2"><td>Front brakes:</td><td>Single disc</td><td>
</td></tr><tr class="alt1"><td>Front brakes diameter:</td><td>260 mm (10.2 inches)</td><td>240mm </td></tr><tr class="alt2"><td>Rear brakes:</td><td>Single disc</td><td>
</td></tr><tr class="alt1"><td>Rear brakes diameter:</td><td>240 mm (9.4 inches)</td><td>220mm</td></tr><tr class="alt2"><td>Physical measures and capacities</td><td>
</td></tr><tr class="alt1"><td>Dry weight:</td><td>101.0 kg (222.7 pounds)</td><td>87.0 kg (191.8 pounds)</td></tr><tr class="alt2"><td>Seat height:</td><td>975 mm (38.4 inches) If adjustable, lowest setting.</td><td>37.4</td></tr><tr class="alt1"><td>Overall length:</td><td>2,260 mm (89.0 inches)</td><td>83.9</td></tr><tr class="alt2"><td>Overall width:</td><td>840 mm (33.1 inches)</td><td>32.6</td></tr><tr class="alt1"><td>Ground clearance:</td><td>325 mm (12.8 inches)</td><td>13.9</td></tr><tr class="alt2"><td>Wheelbase:</td><td>1,465 mm (57.7 inches)</td><td>56.8</td></tr><tr class="alt1"><td>Fuel capacity:</td><td>2.51</td><td>2.0 gal</td></tr><tr class="alt2"><td>Oil capacity:</td><td>0.70 litres (0.05 quarts)</td><td>0.65 litres.</td></tr><tr class="alt1"><td>Gear Ratios:</td><td>
</td></tr><tr class="alt2"><td>1st</td><td>2.36</td><td>2.537</td></tr><tr class="alt1"><td>2nd</td><td>1.87</td><td>1.867</td></tr><tr class="alt2"><td>3rd</td><td>1.58</td><td>1.526</td></tr><tr class="alt1"><td>4th</td><td>1.35</td><td>1.285</td></tr><tr class="alt2"><td>5th</td><td>1.18</td><td>1.13</td></tr><tr class="alt1"><td>6th</td><td>1</td><td>1</td></tr><tr class="alt2"><td>Final</td><td>50/13</td><td>49/12</td></tr></tbody></table>
The steering geometry specifications, weight, and dimensions imply that the 1997 CR125 was more nimble than the current 2013 WR125. The transmission gear ratios reveal the CR125 had a wider gear ratio range compared to the WR125. I'm not convinced that the 30 lbs. difference in dry weight can be accounted for in the WR125 lighting equipment and kickstand.
Clarke and IMS make larger fuel tanks for both models; the pre '95 Honda CR125 is equipped with a 100/100-18 rear wheel which is a direct swap for the '96+ 19" MX rim; and Enduro equipment (Skid plate, pipe guard, hand guards) are readily available from the after-market. Suspension tuning will get the cartridge forks and rear shock sorted for off-road riding.
When was the last time you rode a sub-200 lbs. bike that revs to the moon; and cost less than a grand? It's just too much fun!
The objective of this effort is to get the 'best bang for the buck': Can you get a great Enduro ride without breaking the bank?: A budget of $2000 or less or do you have to fork out $6000+ for current 4-stroke (or a KTM or Husqvarna 2-stroke).
So this kicks off the 1997 CR125 Project... yes, we've got one! and already have it converted to Enduro spec just in time for the January 20th, 2013 Prairie City Grand Prix.
1998 Husqvarna WR125 received the Marzocchi 45mm USD Cartridge Forks.
1998-2010 CR125/SM/WR/WRE125 share same Wossner piston and Top-end rebuild kits;
1998-2012 CR125/WR125 use the same conrod
Same bore x stroke: but cylinders have different part numbers through the years.
38mm Mikuni TMX. 1999-2012 use same intake manifold.
ProCircuit makes the same pipe for 1999-2004. FMF designed the same Fatty Pipe for 2000-2002 models; 2003-2006
All had 6-speed transmissions. 2000-2011 Clutch is same as 1986-1999 Honda CR125
Brake caliper pad are same rear 1998-2009; Same front 1998-2004 then 2005-2009.
I'll have to leave it to y'all to figure out the significant changes from 1998 to 2013. Here's a link to the evolution of Husqvarna 125cc bikes: http://www.motodacross.com/husqvarna/cr125.htm?a
$7096 Eye candy: 2012 HM Moto CRE 125R
Utilizes 2007 Honda CR125 frame, porting, NiCaSil cylinder, and transmission with compression ratio bumped up to 12.5:1. Dell'Orto VHST 28 carburetor (same as Aprilia RS125), ignition map selector switch, Acerbis plastics, Blackbird graphics, Vertex pistons, Maestroni expansion chamber, LeoVince silencer, Domino controls, SuperSprox sprockets. Options for Paoili 41mm or Kayaba 46mm USD fork; 'wave' brake rotors, and electric start.
HM Moto choked down the carburetor from a 38mm Mikuni TMX down to a 28mm Dell'Orto VHST to meet Euro 3 emission standards and be street legal. Note the e-start displaced left side kick start and right side chain.
You seem to make a lot of assumptions based on spec sheets.
There is more to a motorcycle than a spec sheet, some bikes look great on paper but shit in the flesh, and some bikes should be crap according to the specs, but seem to work really well.
Ride a 93 bike and a current bike and get back to us.:deal
The CR was not a "shit in the flesh" machine,it was somewhat peaky for enduro but as he says a flywheel conversion may help this problem.I myself would love a real world comparison of the two and actually think his research may be well founded.Outside the usual brakes and rotor upgrade and both machines with no fuel injection I must be missing something that you see?
The most glaring upgrade would suggest suspension, the CR has more travel but might need a re-valve or lighter spring but the components are fairly comparable.
I almost bought a Wr 250 otd for 5500 but I have enough loans and trying to pay my debt down and dont want anymore payments.Hopefully When I do ge tin a better situation They will still be there and affordable for 5700-6000 as I will not pay 8 grand for a dirtbike that wont be worth 2 grand in 3-5 years.THis sport is getting off the knucking futz hook and is getting really really redicoulously unaffordable.I wanted it street legalized and in the peoples republic of nj where there is already to many godamned laws and regulations Im told its a grey area .meaning if you get someone in DMV that doesnt know it will get thru and vice versa.This is too much of a crap shoot for me.They tried to sell me a te 310 Im like Nope dont want a 4 stroke already have an Aprilia RXV and it worries me because if it blows up it will cost6 grand for a new mill which I neither have and neither will pay for .Yes my Ape still runs but if it blows up it will be a very silent and expensive boat anchor sitting in the backof the garage as i will not fix it.maybe Ill stick a cr 500 engine in it:D
Yamaha has really upgraded 2 stroke technology but uses it only on their snow machines not on bikes. Perhaps Husky's new 300 2T in 2014 will get them all thinking about this again. just watch the endurocross circuit or chk out the weekend warriors on Michigan single track. Many of them are still keeping or going BACK TO 2Ts:clap. Why not run a 200 KTM? It seems to meet all your needs and already has good torque.
Those Huskys aren't too far off from their original designs from Cagiva, when was that, the1980s? :lol3
We had a 09 WR125, boosted to a 144 with Eric Gorr porting for top end. Ran great. Suspension was pretty awesome with just proper springs.
Our current "old" bike is a nearly new 1999 KTM 125SX with new gen forks, shock, wheels, brakes and proper valving for GNCC. It does everything very well. It is a rocket too.
If you want the latest development in a mainstream 2t, the new KTMs are it. Bottom line though, the rider makes a bigger difference and a well tuned and fresh older bike can compete. Our 2002 380SX was competeting at a very high level last year and was far too much motor for tight hare scrambles. After the holeshot it was a bear to deal with. That rider is on the old 125 now.
Last time I checked, the WR Huskys were on the list of approved street legal bikes in NJ. :evil
Did you pick the CR over a YZ simply because of the California regulations?
////Love where this is going. I have been thinking about a lightweight 2 stroke to boost my woods smiles to miles ratio.
Conventional wisdom says KDX, but I want a) super lightweight and b) a project!. I've looked at DSing a KX100 - they are only 157 lb (rivaling a trials bike!) but they don't have full size wheels (19/16),
The Husky definitely seems overweight- it's about the same as a KDX200 /220 @ 220 lb. Why bother with the Husky, when you could throw some KX USD forks on a KDX, get a suspension revalve, and have a much more tractable engine ad the same weight for way way less than a new Husky.
The current technology developments on 2-strokes are turbocharging and EFI. We'll throw it electric start :lol3 . In 2009 TM Racing announced they would release a EFI 2-stroke... but as of today TM Racing 125/144 still have the Keihin PWK 38.
Why not run a KTM200? Read on... (besides we already have one but want to constrain ourselves play within the F.I.M. EWC E1 rules).
Examining the current EWC and Extreme series.: The E1 class is dominated by 250cc 4-strokes since 2-strokes are limited to 125cc. E2 class is split between 450cc 4-strokes and 250cc 2-strokes. Similar to E2, EnduroCross has become the domain of the 350 4-stroke.
But in the E3 class and Extreme/Hard series, despite the availability of >450cc 4-strokes, this class is dominated by the 300cc 2-strokes.
Unlike the late 70's and early '80s when there was frequent experimentation through trial & error, and rapid advances in both 2-stroke engine and suspension development, dirt bike technology in the last 20-years has plateaued. Most of the recent developments have focused on utilizing lighter or stronger materials to permit designs with more efficient mass centralization around the engine, or repositioning the motor to improve handling.
2-stroke engine development have been limited since the perfection of 'snail' exhaust chamber design, exhaust power-valves, reed blocks, and flat slide electronic TPS and Accelerator pump enabled carburetors became available and affordable (economies of scale) to the general market. One motorsport that continues to push the development in 2-stroke engines is karting: SwedeTech and link to National Karting News article on the CR125 Moto class.
The new frontier for 2-strokes is in EFI, and turbocharging. EFI R&D is driven by stricter emission regulations. Public perception of emission issues from 2-strokes still favor EFI R&D for 4-strokes. Turbocharging may not be viable for dirt bikes due to additional weight and heat generation. We expected TM to release an EFI 2-stroke in 2009. There's rumour of Husqvarna EFI 2-strokes in 2014.
Honda's release of aluminium twin-spar frames in 1997 followed by Yamaha in 2005 against KTM/Husaberg retention of CrMo single backbone frames imply that the verdict isn't out on the advantages of aluminium frames. Disadvantages are: additional weight to achieve equivalent torsional strength, which resulted in excessive rigidity in the early over-built aluminium frames.
Rising linkage single shock rear suspension have reached the limits of development, and are subject to the 'Law of Diminishing Returns'. Suspension evolution seems to reveal the open-cartridge forks are better suited for off-road, and the closed-cartridge forks are generally preferred in MX. Many of the suspension improvements are already known (reducing unsprung weight, geometries, rigidity, reducing stiction), but availability to the market is constrained by cost. The KYB Pneumatic Fork Spring and associated technologies as used by Fox in MTB shocks, are still pending market response.
I find the GasGas EC300 easier to be a 'lazy rider' over the KTM 200EXC; but that doesn't mean faster. The CR125R sorted out may be a faster woods bike than the KDX200 we've owned; we shall see...
The 1997 CR125R has been described as the most powerful CR125 motor, and is the last year of the 1992-1997 CrMo steel frame, In 1998 Honda adopted the aluminum frame (1997 for the CR250R) and a 5-speed transmission.
The YZ125 is still imported to the US.
I have an 09 husky wr300. Been riding dirt bikes since 1977. I used to have a 87 husky cr250 among many bikes. Have ridden all the more recent bikes, ktm 300, yz 250, honda cr250, gas gas 300 etc. To this day I have not ridden a bike with the suspension/handlnig and stability as my 87 cr250. The power was right there with todays bikes too. It felt hevier than my 09 though for sure. But, unless your a faster intermediate rider or above you can spend maybe 2500 on an older dirt bike. Tune it and get suspension dialed in and you can easily keep up with the rich shlubs all day long on theier 8-9k ktm 300's. Take the money you saved and go to some Steve wise classes or something. My 01 cr250 had that "holy shit" kind of power that would put any of the new bikes to shame. As a matter of fact service honda uses toe 01 motor in its new cr 250's. Newer isn't always better
I could give 2 shits about emissions the way this country is going w jobs is by the time the greens have there way were are gonna be too poor to afford anything forget about green technology at that point.Years ago In my town we had the right to know act,we all called it right to blow act to be funny but when it was over I pulled the health officer/administrator of the town who gave the class.I asked her why Russia hasnt done anything about its pollution problems,she replied the people have to eat first and dont worry about pollution until much much later in the game.I see 10 years later from that class that if we stay on this current socialist over governed path we will be in the same ill fated place.I might be wrong but the middle class cant keep getting cornholed like we are.Ill have to check into the husky wr from another dealer,either they will have it go out the door street legal or it will be no sale.there will be no well maybe or maybe not.
You maybe getting older and can't ride as hard as you used too :wink: :D
Lets see your cr! The light weight had me interested in one but found that the hig revs required cancelled out the two stroke stealth factor needed around here.
That CRE125 you posted sent me on a wild goose chase when you stated it was a honda motor with electric start. It must be a rotax instead like whats used in the 125cc aprilia models.
So when are you going to fill us on on your mods?
A 94 CR125 just popped up locally for $600....tempting.
Sum bitch, best thread I've read in quite a while. I'm no stranger to the smokers, use to race them long before they had silencers on the pipes.....:wink: I recently picked up two $100.00 dirt bikes. The first a 96 RM125 with nothing resembling compression. Threw a top end, fluid swap, carb clean etc and sent it down the road to a local kid.
The second bike is a 98 YZ125. Was barn fresh with plenty of compression. Fluids swap, carb clean.......etc. I think I paid as much for the graphics kit as I did the bike :lol3
Anywho. One thing i've been painfully reminded of over the years is the fun factor is not directly proportianal to the amount of money you spend. On any given day I've at least 20 or more bikes. Including the latest greatest orange bikes. The bikes that were loaded in the back of the van a few hours ago , in preparation for this weeks 2 day moto getaway include the above mentioned 98 YZ125 and a free Chinese 50cc Scooter ( wifeys beater) But hey, My new bikes look super trick parked in front of the shop.............:rofl
The 1997 CR125 with a FMF Turbine Silencer tested quieter (87.1 dB) <cite></cite>than my GasGas EC300 with an FMF Q-Stealth silencer. Here's the sound check results from CA OHV sound tests. The 4-strokes are much louder.
The 125 is a blast to ride... it's a 'mini' that demands you ride WFO! and maintain momentum; but sucks on hills and deep mud.
As far as lighweight bikes are concerned. We prefer our trials bikes when it gets really gnarly.
We took the opposite approach - Keep it simple (K.I.S.S.) and not go overboard. This is Project Low Bucks! : http://www.bayarearidersforum.com/fo.../twofinger.gif We held a yard sale, sold a bunch of spare parts, useless farkles, and used riding gear on CraigsList to raise the funds to purchase this 1997 CR125R also listed on Craigslist. We've kept the project budget under $1000 before the first 50-hrs. top-end rebuild.
We didn't want to be wrenching - we had to go riding!
We discovered that a proper Trials bike with additional fuel range is much more capable; in fact, as the Europeans know, a Trials bike is superior to any other bike in very tight and gnarly tracks. Trials bikes regularly outperformed MX based 250cc 2-st/450cc 4-st in Endurocross and were banned after the 2007 season.
Lessons Learned: When we want to attempt to show up our fellow riders in gnarly terrain and hill climbs; we ride our Trials bikes over our GasGAS EC300, KTM200EXC, or this CR125R. Side note: I still keep a Husqvarna TE450 as a 'desert sled' but prefer a KTM450EXC (RFS) I previously owned; or better yet a Husaberg FE470E which I should have kept; BUT I would never consider taking any of these thumpers into gnarly terrain when I have the lighter 2-strokes.
Here are a few videos that are quite revealing:
Ivan Cervantes vs. Toni Bou and Pol Tarres:
<object><iframe src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/PZ-BxhxnbI4" allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" width="560"></iframe></object>
Off-road on Trials Bikes:
<object><iframe src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/9dJu91wUOsA" allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" width="560"></iframe></object>The KTM200 can't keep up.
Hill Climbs on a Trial Bike:
<object><iframe src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/uy8Re64UwbQ" allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" width="560"></iframe></object>
Freeride on Trials bikes:
<object><iframe src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/0g8DX8Uc4sY" allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" width="560"></iframe>
A KTM Freeride 350 is overweight in comparison
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