125 vs 250 coming off a 450

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2/25/2018 8:42 AM

Hi guys, I´m pretty sure this has been discussed but which bike is better when coming off a KX 450? I´m looking for a 2 stroke only, because I feel like I´ve lost some moto skills. This bike is easy to ride, but when I´m trying to push it is way too much, so I want something to have fun as I don´t race. I´m 165 lbs and around 6´. I looking for a Yamaha only, as I don´t like European bikes tough they´re pretty good. Should I buy a YZ 125 or 250? Thanks in advance

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Heavy Hitter

2/25/2018 9:05 AM

At your size the 125 should be great for you!

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2/25/2018 9:32 AM

I just bought a new 150SX at the end of the season. I put a few rides on it and it’s easily my favorite bike ever. Until then, my YZ250 two stroke was my favorite ever once I swore off 450’s because I die on them as soon as a braking bump forms. Hope that makes even a little sense for you.

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2/25/2018 9:47 AM

I have a 15' KX450 and i recently purchased a KX 125 for the exact reasons you are thinking of getting one; 450 made me lazy and i wanted to get back to the basics. I'm 6'1" and 190lbs, and the 125 is fast enough to pull me around any track here in SoCal.

I'd suggest getting a 125 because you really need to work hard and get things right in order to go fast on it, and this will only translate to better technique on your big bike. When i first road mine, i immediately noticed how much i DONT use the back brake on my 450 as I nearly overshot corners on the 125 since they have essentially 0 engine braking. I now notice my corner speed getting faster and faster since riding the 125. I also notice myself charging deeper into corners before braking since i'm now properly using both brakes.

I feel like you can still be lazy on a 250 and be able to get around a track, and it wouldn't "reteach" you the techniques as much as a 125 would.

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2/25/2018 10:15 AM
Edited Date/Time: 2/25/2018 10:16 AM

theycallmeebryan wrote:

I have a 15' KX450 and i recently purchased a KX 125 for the exact reasons you are thinking of getting one; 450 made me lazy and i wanted to get back to the basics. I'm 6'1" and 190lbs, and the 125 is fast enough to pull me around any track here in SoCal.

I'd suggest getting a 125 because you really need to work hard and get things right in order to go fast on it, and this will only translate to better technique on your big bike. When i first road mine, i immediately noticed how much i DONT use the back brake on my 450 as I nearly overshot corners on the 125 since they have essentially 0 engine braking. I now notice my corner speed getting faster and faster since riding the 125. I also notice myself charging deeper into corners before braking since i'm now properly using both brakes.

I feel like you can still be lazy on a 250 and be able to get around a track, and it wouldn't "reteach" you the techniques as much as a 125 would.

Funny, I did the same thing. I have a 16 KX450 and I bought a used 16 KTM 125 for the same reason.
I hadn't ridden a 125 in 10 years.

Holy God!! I forgot how much work they are to ride and how lazy I got on my 450.
I think I shifted more in one lap on the 125 than I did all day on my 450. lol
It's been fun to ride and work on my skills, or should I say, lack of.

But I wouldn't want it for my only bike. Still love my 450!

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2/25/2018 10:26 AM

I've only had, 250Fs and 250 2 strokes, no 450s.

The YZ125s I own now are all about SPH. "Smiles Per Hour"

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2/25/2018 10:35 AM

theycallmeebryan wrote:

I have a 15' KX450 and i recently purchased a KX 125 for the exact reasons you are thinking of getting one; 450 made me lazy and i wanted to get back to the basics. I'm 6'1" and 190lbs, and the 125 is fast enough to pull me around any track here in SoCal.

I'd suggest getting a 125 because you really need to work hard and get things right in order to go fast on it, and this will only translate to better technique on your big bike. When i first road mine, i immediately noticed how much i DONT use the back brake on my 450 as I nearly overshot corners on the 125 since they have essentially 0 engine braking. I now notice my corner speed getting faster and faster since riding the 125. I also notice myself charging deeper into corners before braking since i'm now properly using both brakes.

I feel like you can still be lazy on a 250 and be able to get around a track, and it wouldn't "reteach" you the techniques as much as a 125 would.

Indy mxer wrote:

Funny, I did the same thing. I have a 16 KX450 and I bought a used 16 KTM 125 for the same reason.
I hadn't ridden a 125 in 10 years.

Holy God!! I forgot how much work they are to ride and how lazy I got on my 450.
I think I shifted more in one lap on the 125 than I did all day on my 450. lol
It's been fun to ride and work on my skills, or should I say, lack of.

But I wouldn't want it for my only bike. Still love my 450!

Almost exactly word for word of what Bryan and Indy said above. I truly belive the best moto training tool every made.....was the 125 / 150. I'm still shocked every time I ride my Husky 125. Being 6'-1" and 185lbs , it pulls me around the track better then I could of ever imagined. And those little bikes can / will teach you so much if you are patient and willing to put the practice in on them. I say give the 125 a shot. If after a good few months , you aren't gelling with it , then try a 250. But definitely give the little bike a fair shot.....you won't regret it.

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And there goes Jeffro. One of God's own prototypes. A super high-powered mutant of some kind never even considered for mass production. Too weird to live, and too rare to die.

Pimpin' Ho's , Rollin' fatty's......drinkin' beers , beers , beers!! ~ Ja

2/25/2018 10:44 AM

Thank you so much guys! I really appreciate all of your replies, and fo sho will look for a 125!

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Heavy Hitter

2/25/2018 11:28 AM

I owned both an '05 YZ450F and '05 KX125 at the same time 10 years ago. I'd ride 'em both back to back at the track until I decided (easy decision, too), to sell the 450F and keep the KX. I'm not racing, just riding and the KX was SO MUCH more fun. I LIKE shifting and clutching and _riding_ the thing.

Last year, I owned a '16 KX250F and my son's '04 KX125 that we were waiting for him to grow into. I rode his bike a little bit until he outgrew his KX100 and in that short time, I said "I've gotta get a 125 for me... " So, when an '02 RM134 came up, I got it. I rode it and the 250F back to back for a couple of months and put the 250F up for sale. Again, the 125 was SO MUCH more fun.

The 250 2S would have more power than a 125 (duh....) but for me, it's all about the fun and for that.... 125/144. I've had 2 YZ250's and they were both great, but I just like the uber-light weight of a 125. I would not throw a good 250 out of the garage, though. In fact, I've been thinking about... no, never mind....

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2015 Kawasaki KX 250F
2015 GasGas TXT Racing 125
2015 Husqvarna TC 125
2018 KTM 150 XC-W

2/25/2018 12:05 PM

HighPlainsSquid wrote:

I owned both an '05 YZ450F and '05 KX125 at the same time 10 years ago. I'd ride 'em both back to back at the track until I decided (easy decision, too), to sell the 450F and keep the KX. I'm not racing, just riding and the KX was SO MUCH more fun. I LIKE shifting and clutching and _riding_ the thing.

Last year, I owned a '16 KX250F and my son's '04 KX125 that we were waiting for him to grow into. I rode his bike a little bit until he outgrew his KX100 and in that short time, I said "I've gotta get a 125 for me... " So, when an '02 RM134 came up, I got it. I rode it and the 250F back to back for a couple of months and put the 250F up for sale. Again, the 125 was SO MUCH more fun.

The 250 2S would have more power than a 125 (duh....) but for me, it's all about the fun and for that.... 125/144. I've had 2 YZ250's and they were both great, but I just like the uber-light weight of a 125. I would not throw a good 250 out of the garage, though. In fact, I've been thinking about... no, never mind....

Yeah 250 2 strokes seem also great bikes. Glad to hear that the fun factor goes hands down to the 125!

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Heavy Hitter

2/25/2018 12:41 PM

I have a yz250 and my wife has a yz125. Last time we went to the track i got a flat front tyre and couldn't be bothered changing it for one moto so i took the 125 out. It had been a while since i had ridden it and man did i have to work to get around the track.
I'm 5'11, 185lbs and while the 125 cleared every jump there is no way I would trade my 250 for one. After 1 session on that 125 i was more spent than 3 sessions on my 250

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2/25/2018 3:00 PM

Well I guess now it just comes down what you'll like more. On one hand you have the 125... that most here agree (including me) is incredibly fun yet requires the rider to be highly engaged with shifting and keeping proper revs. Not much in top speed but its sure fun getting there. Hang on!!
On the other hand the 250 will be nice with its stronger, broader power band and top end ....also, a bit less work overall managing revs than the 125 and more forgiving with low rev situations as well.

Which ever one you choose, don't forget to enjoy the smell.

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2/25/2018 3:48 PM

I should add that a large part of why I ride is to get exercise. Therefore, if the 125 is a little more work, I don't mind.

I found that, yeah, coming off a bigger bike, the tendency is to work too hard. But once you get used to the 125 again, you learn to relax and just ride the thing. I'm not trying to go as fast as I can anymore... I'm just trying to be smooth, have fun, and make my heart beat.

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2015 Kawasaki KX 250F
2015 GasGas TXT Racing 125
2015 Husqvarna TC 125
2018 KTM 150 XC-W

2/25/2018 4:07 PM

I'm thinking about trading my new 450 for a 150 as well. I like to find my limit and the bikes limit when I can, but I don't ride 2+ times a week like I used too so it's tough to find the bikes limit but I seem to slam into mine faster than I should lol... I ride 2-3 times a month at this moment and I'm not in bike shape to ride a 450 like I want to. I bet I can ride a 125-150 more at its limit than my 450 though and that sounds like a huge smile on my face!!

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2/25/2018 4:17 PM

I’m about to buy an 18 rmz250 but currently I ride a 97 and 00 YZ125 cool

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2/25/2018 4:25 PM
Edited Date/Time: 2/25/2018 5:59 PM

There is nothing more fun then a 125 espaiclly after coming off of a 450. They feel like they weigh 75 pounds.

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2/25/2018 5:28 PM

Park Boys wrote:

There is nothing more fun then a 125 espaiclly after coming off of a 450. They feel like they weigh 75 pounds.

PB....you been drinking some PBR today bro-chacho? laughing

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And there goes Jeffro. One of God's own prototypes. A super high-powered mutant of some kind never even considered for mass production. Too weird to live, and too rare to die.

Pimpin' Ho's , Rollin' fatty's......drinkin' beers , beers , beers!! ~ Ja

2/25/2018 5:59 PM

Park Boys wrote:

There is nothing more fun then a 125 espaiclly after coming off of a 450. They feel like they weigh 75 pounds.

jeffro503 wrote:

PB....you been drinking some PBR today bro-chacho? laughing

I wish, then at least I would have had an excuse.

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2/25/2018 6:33 PM

Park Boys wrote:

There is nothing more fun then a 125 espaiclly after coming off of a 450. They feel like they weigh 75 pounds.

jeffro503 wrote:

PB....you been drinking some PBR today bro-chacho? laughing

Park Boys wrote:

I wish, then at least I would have had an excuse.

Haha....it's all good man. It's Sunday!

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And there goes Jeffro. One of God's own prototypes. A super high-powered mutant of some kind never even considered for mass production. Too weird to live, and too rare to die.

Pimpin' Ho's , Rollin' fatty's......drinkin' beers , beers , beers!! ~ Ja

2/25/2018 7:14 PM

125 all the way, if you're wanting more exercise and fun. The 250 smoker has more room for being lazy, for sure.

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"Nothing happens until something moves"

2/26/2018 3:13 AM

Sell the 450, get both 125 and a 250. You'll be the happiest man alive. grin

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2/26/2018 4:47 AM
Edited Date/Time: 3/28/2020 1:55 PM

Turbojez wrote:

Sell the 450, get both 125 and a 250. You'll be the happiest man alive. grin

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Heavy Hitter

2/26/2018 6:06 AM

JWACK wrote:

I'm thinking about trading my new 450 for a 150 as well. I like to find my limit and the bikes limit when I can, but I don't ride 2+ times a week like I used too so it's tough to find the bikes limit but I seem to slam into mine faster than I should lol... I ride 2-3 times a month at this moment and I'm not in bike shape to ride a 450 like I want to. I bet I can ride a 125-150 more at its limit than my 450 though and that sounds like a huge smile on my face!!

I'm in the same boat as you. I always rode 250Fs, even when I weighed 220 lbs. Got older and started riding 450s. After having a kid I probably only ride once or twice a month and I'm not in shape to push a bike...especially a 450. Its not as much fun riding a fast bike slow. I sold my 2014 CRF450R and got a 2017 KTM 350 SXF and although its faster, albeit more manageable than the CRF450, it will definitely show you whose boss.

I've always said that if I get my weight in check I would ride a KTM 150. Rode a family members on their single track trails about 2 years ago and it hauled my big A$$ around the trails fine. To ride MX I would need to be 215lbs or below with suspension.

To the OP, at one point I weighed 260lbs and had a 2008 YZ250 two stroke (so kind of the same power to weight as you to a 125) and it was without a doubt the most fun I'd had on a dirt bike since my early 20s. I giggled when I laid into sand berms.

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