1989 CR125 Winter Project

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10/12/2018 12:49 PM
Edited Date/Time: 11/22/2020 2:08 PM

I picked up an 89 on CL recently. Its in decent shape. I also picked up a complete '01 CR250 front end I would like to bolt on.

I am curious if any of the users here have experience in building these or riding these back in the day. Any advice, tips & tricks would be very much appreciated. Especially concerning a 144 kit. Would it be worth it?

Thanks in advance!

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10/15/2018 4:56 PM

I had one back then. Sorted the jetting and suspension and rode and raced it. Awesome bike. Possibly one of my favourite bikes I've ever had.

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10/16/2018 8:24 AM

Linkage and swingarm were rusted and seized up. Had to soak the swing arm bolt for a couple days to get the bolt off. The linkage arm is jacked. Don't know how this even happens!

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10/16/2018 1:30 PM

Following this one- I had a 89 myself.

Anyways, guessing the linkage arm was damaged from the rear shock bolt backing out at some point.

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10/16/2018 3:24 PM

contact phil denton engineering on FB he reproduces full linkages

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Instagram @factoryfarley25

10/16/2018 10:56 PM

FarleyMX25 wrote:

contact phil denton engineering on FB he reproduces full linkages

Here is PDE's web page https://www.phildentonengineering.com/

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10/17/2018 7:15 AM

FarleyMX25 wrote:

contact phil denton engineering on FB he reproduces full linkages

JMX82 wrote:

Here is PDE's web page https://www.phildentonengineering.com/

Thanks, fellas!

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10/22/2018 8:03 AM

More progress on the tear down. Motor appears to be more rugged than I anticipated.


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11/9/2018 9:11 AM

I managed to find a "Service Kit" on ebay for like $55 shipped from the UK. All OEM from 1989.
It contains a piston, two rings, , wrist pin and bearing, a grip of circlips, 4 main jets (170,172,178,180), 2 slow jets (50 & 55), clutch lock washer and a 13 tooth counter shaft sprocket.

SCORE! Has anyone had a Service Kit before. I have never heard of them before.


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11/11/2018 8:38 PM

Nice 89' 125. I would like to restore an 89' 125 to join my 88' 250. I really enjoyed restoring my bike. I did 2001 forks as well. I still need to finish up some jetting and need to get riding this bike but have been so dam busy I just haven't had the time to get out and ride. Keep us posted on the build. These are great bikes and well worth restoring. I have not swung a leg over a 125 in years but I am sure you can still have fun on one even if it is a little underpowered by todays standards. Have fun. Here is my 250.

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11/12/2018 7:51 AM
Edited Date/Time: 11/12/2018 7:52 AM

Dude! Your 88 is immaculate! Well done!

Quick question, did the 01 triple clamps bolt right up or did you need to do any modifications?

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11/12/2018 10:32 AM

bonseff wrote:

Dude! Your 88 is immaculate! Well done!

Quick question, did the 01 triple clamps bolt right up or did you need to do any ...more

Thanks. I wish I could find more time to enjoy it but I really like this bike. I used the All Balls bearing kits top and bottom to mount up the 2001 triple clamps. Make sure you used the thickest shim in the kit under the bottom bearing. You could probably put a thick and a thin shim under the bearing. I ended up using a thick shim on the bottom and a thick on top. Steering stops work fine and the offset seems to work great geometry wise. Bike is stable and turns well. Having the bars sit farther fwd from the more modern upper clamp helps a bunch. The older bikes really had the bars in your lap. For me the rider cockpit on this bike is close to my KTM. I have an oversize bar with the oversize bar clamps in fwd position as well. The front forks are longer so you will have to slide them up as far as you can in the clamps. Mine are nearly touching the bars. It still is a bit long compared to the before and after measurement from the front axle to the steering head of the original forks to the 2001 forks. It steers sharp where I have it though. The couple mm longer than original probably gives me some stability and the fwd bar is probably helping me with carving. I am quite happy with the forks. Any questions come up on your build let me know and I will try to help.
Greg

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11/12/2018 11:40 AM

avmechanic wrote:

Nice 89' 125. I would like to restore an 89' 125 to join my 88' 250. I really enjoyed restoring my bike. I did 2001 forks as ...more

Dude that thing is so sweet I'm a big fan of these late eighties early nineties Honda CR's the generation just before the McGrath era I'm looking for and 89 or a 91 to restore but I'm curious .....with a completely fresh motor how is the 89 in terms of power?

Heres an interesting story..... I graduated high school in 1997 and at the time I had been riding a 1987 CR250 for about the last 3 years prior. I wanted a newer style bike soooooo bad. Inverted forks, low boy pipe, super thin ergonomics, and A more modern bike because let's face it the difference between 1987 in 1993 in terms of bike evolution was massive for the Honda CR lineup. I had helped pay for the 87 by selling my 84 IT200 and having a summer job where i worked my ass off.
So when it came to getting the 93, i was about $700-$900 shy Of what the guy was asking for his bike. At that time I was and still am obsessed with writing group bikes it's my most favorite thing to do in the world and my parents gave me a choice everybody I knew was going on some sort of senior trip be it Jamaica or a cruise to Mexico whatever and I want to go on that trip so badd but I had a choice to make I can either get this 93CR to 50 as my graduation present which would have been help in terms of buying it or go on the senior trip and continue to ride my 87.
Needkess to say, i was one of the only seniors in my class of 80 or so people (small town living = super small population high school) that did not go anywhere for my senior trip. I got that 1993 CR250 and i wss so excited!! All if my friends were gone on the same trip to Jamaciai was bummed about not going until I went out ti the garage and loaded up my bike and for that entire week i rode the holy shit outta that bike.

I sold the 87 to a friend of mine that was a year behind in school and was able to ride the 93 and the 87 back-to-back fully knowing the 8700 fresh motor that me and my dad had built before we sold it and it wasn't even a comparison the 93 had so much more power it wasn't even funny and I'm just curious if the 89 with the same HPP set up was that far down on power the 87 had a real smooth electric field and the 93 well that's was Honda's motor of doom for 11 years and it was a great motor

If you're wondering what that has to do with the 1989 CR to 50 I had my eyes set on and 89 for sale and i want it so badd right when we were about to go get it it got sold and we were back to square one luckily it happened that way because the 93 came up and was just slightly more expensive meaning we got a really good deal on the 93 or the 89 was overpriced i can't remember but ever since then I'm wanted in 89 because i was obsessed with getting it at the time.

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11/13/2018 8:38 AM

Thank you for your insight, Greg! I truly appreciate it! You saved me some research and I ordered the bearings and shims. Hopefully this weekend I can get back to making more progress.

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11/14/2018 11:37 PM

avmechanic wrote:

Nice 89' 125. I would like to restore an 89' 125 to join my 88' 250. I really enjoyed restoring my bike. I did 2001 forks as ...more

Lightning78 wrote:

Dude that thing is so sweet I'm a big fan of these late eighties early nineties Honda CR's the generation just before the ...more

The 89' is a great bike save for the shit forks. As you say the HPP motors are smooth and reasonably powerful for their time. They just made more power every year. The 89' has more power and harder hit than the 87' for sure. the 91' made the most power. I think the HPP motor has one of the best motor of the 80s and 90s. The 92' to 2001 motor made some more power and kept up with gains every year too. That said an 89' would not be a ton slower than the 93' The HPP motors make for a fantastic off road motor with it's broad usable powerband that gets power to the ground. If you get the 89' and feel a need for more power there are plenty of avenues to achieve that. The usual porting and pipe helps but you can do big bores with the stock cylinder and even fit the aftermarket big bore cylinders from the TRX250 four wheeler. These can be done to 400 plus CCs. Especially combined with a stroker crank. I find my 88' has plenty of power for me at 46 years old. I used to ride a 450 four stroke Yamaha off road and then downsized to a 250 four stoke KTM which I still have. I find the old CR to be in between power wise. I like the light weight of these bikes. My 88' CR250 is like 40lbs lighter than my 450 was and still 10lbs lighter than my 250KTM XCFW. The best part of these old bikes is that they hold a pretty steady value once restored where as the new bikes value drops pretty fast. While you can easily spend more money than the bike is worth to restore it. At least if you keep it a while and use it the bike will just stay at a solid value and it will be a far cry less to maintain than these new four strokes. If you end up picking up a bike post up what you bought and any buildup you are doing. I love to see these old bikes saved.
Greg

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12/3/2018 10:55 AM

My family traveled to a family thing at a Texas hunting ranch over Thanksgiving (I don't hunt), so I took the opportunity to strip and paint my frame, disassemble and clean the air box, and clean up the cylinder and ports. Next up is replace seals and gaskets, and paint the motor. Water pump casing is looking rugged as hell though. Not sure if it is usable.

I think the yellow on the frame will provide a nice contrast to the red tank and plastics.

Finally, some progress!

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12/9/2018 8:59 AM

Making some progress.

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12/30/2018 3:55 PM

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refurbing the tank and airbox was a chore.
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12/30/2018 4:17 PM

Did you sand and polish your gas tank? It is a chore!!! I have to do that to mine.

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12/30/2018 4:32 PM

Brian_Bowles wrote:

Did you sand and polish your gas tank? It is a chore!!! I have to do that to mine.

Yea, 30yrs of grime. I bought a wet sandpaper kit on amazon - 300 to 2500. it took hours of elbow grease and cursing the previous owners. Good luck with your build, homie!

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12/30/2018 7:55 PM

Brian_Bowles wrote:

Did you sand and polish your gas tank? It is a chore!!! I have to do that to mine.

bonseff wrote:

Yea, 30yrs of grime. I bought a wet sandpaper kit on amazon - 300 to 2500. it took hours of elbow grease and cursing the ...more

Haha.... I’ve done the hours of sanding and cursing previous owner too. I’m not sure the fluids were ever changed. I don’t get that, but their all fresh now.

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12/30/2018 10:36 PM

My opinion is your truck looks good yellow. Paint the frame all red. Just my .02.
Keep posting your progress. Thank you.

Ghost

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12/31/2018 7:23 AM

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I know this colorway isn't for everyone, and I took a chance doing it. But once this thing is put together and I design out the graphics for the side panels, I think it will come together. If nothing else, it will be unique and that is good enough for me.

my 2¢
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1/3/2019 7:23 AM

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Cleaned up the cooling system and bolted it up along with the tank and shrouds. Everything still lines up. Next up the exhaust and once my conversion bearings come in, the 2001 CR250 front end.
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1/3/2019 9:02 AM

bonseff wrote: Photo

Cleaned up the cooling system and bolted it up along with the tank and shrouds. Everything still lines up. Next up the ...more

looking really good !

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2/1/2019 9:21 AM

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Made a little bit of progress (hard to get much done with a toddler and five year old). Finished up the 2001 CR250 triple tree conversion bearing/races install, hooked up cables and bars, new rear tire and bolted up the exhaust. Its getting there.

I wanted to give a shout out to RupertX for hooking me up with the shock linkage I was needing. Clutch!

Hopefully I can finish this up in the coming weeks.
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2/1/2019 4:12 PM

Nice bike, my first proper bike was an 89, nothing like yours though.. I was so fresh back then i bought it thinking it was a 93 Ha.

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2/1/2019 6:31 PM

bonseff wrote: Photo
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Made a little bit of progress (hard to get much done with a toddler and five year old). Finished up the 2001 CR250 triple ...more

Looking good...I didn’t realize you were that far along. Can’t wait to see it finished. I’m wishing I had a 125 to go along with my 87’ 250. They started a new 125 class in TVRC that looks fun. Post your progress!

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2/2/2019 10:29 AM

We need to meet up and ride this spring, you are free to ride this for as many laps as you want.

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2/3/2019 7:15 PM

bonseff wrote:

We need to meet up and ride this spring, you are free to ride this for as many laps as you want.

I’m going to take you up on that. Doing the engine has really slowed down the progress on my bike. I’m finding out just what hardware wasn’t right as I’m getting down to the end. Luckily I’m not in a big hurry, just want to do it right. Keep in touch. Your bike is looking good

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