Best Vet Bike! (350)

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10/12/2017 10:59 AM

Can someone explain to me why so many people say the 350 is the best vet bike? This is a serious question. 350's make their best power higher in the rpm range(peak horsepower at 13,400 rpm). I don't know many vets that ride nearly that high in the rpm range even on a 250f. Can anyone give me some more info? Thanks guys!

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2017 RMZ450
2005 YZ250-sold :,(
1998 YZ250
2005 KX250F

80% of the time it works every time
IG @hamdaddyof2 & @2HRacing
Thanks to : Factory Effex, N2Dirt, Acerbis, DT1, Fasthouse, Matix, FMF, ASV, 100% & Mika Metals

10/12/2017 11:02 AM

For me... It's not.

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10/12/2017 11:05 AM

I believe most guys say that because its tame down low compared to a 450. Feels as light as a 250 because of the engine inertia. Has just as much power as a 450 when the throttle is held to the stop.

IMO a 350 has a ton of positives compared to a 450. I just picked up one myself but have yet to ride it due to prior obligations.

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Race Bike: 2018 KTM 350SXF

Other Bikes: 1985 CR80R, 1990 CR250R, 1998 PW80, Specialized Fuse Comp 29.

Sold: 2016 YZ250F, 2012 CRF250R

10/12/2017 11:11 AM
Edited Date/Time: 10/12/2017 11:13 AM

I think there is still a myth about that bike. People often say that it's a good vet bike or for people that don't race because you can't keep up with the 450s. Like the guy above mentions, the 350 puts out similar power as the "slowest" 450s(around 54hp). But you'll have to ride it really aggressive if you want to use all that power.

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10/12/2017 11:19 AM

I think that you have to learn to ride it as a whole new bike. Know of many guys who swear by it. I went slower on mine then I did my stock 250f and that was after I put 20 or so hours on it. Sold it to a guy who was on a 450, now he is quicker then when he was on the 450. Different strokes for different folks.

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10/12/2017 11:25 AM

Because it makes enough usable power all the way from bottom and keeps giving.
Its light as 250f but makes way more usable power and 450f is just too much for old people
who don't workout weekly outside motos.

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10/12/2017 11:31 AM

I don't like the 350

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10/12/2017 12:02 PM

LOVE the 350!!! This bike is great for hare scrambles and on the MX track.

I came off a KTM 300XC to the 350XCF. The 300 was not nearly as good on the MX track. Yeah, it doesn't have the pull your arms out torque the 450 does, but it isn't weak.

I can lug my 350 about as good as the 300 in the tight woods. It's easy to ride, doesn't feel as heavy as the 450 (even though the are about the same). I never rev mine as high as the fastest MX guys, but it is a great powerplant as long as you go 2016 and newer. The older ones are a little more hyper and need the higher revs...

Ride one to see for yourself...

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2019 KTM 350 XC-F
Daytona Dirt Riders (DDR)
Floridatrailriders.org (FTR)

10/12/2017 12:31 PM
Edited Date/Time: 10/12/2017 12:35 PM

I'm interested in the answer to this question as well, because I'm considering this as my next bike.

My understanding, in a nutshell, is that:
1) it makes you *feel* like you are hauling ass.
2) it's easier to lean it and put it where you want than a 450 (less rotating mass)
3) you can rev the piss out of it like you did when you were 18 and the only 4-strokes around were XTs and XRs (nostalgia)
4) yet (in reference to #3) power is more linear than your old 91 RM250 (or whatever you had back then)
5) you can carry a few extra pounds around the mid section and still get a 350 moving (harder to do on a 250F)!

I think it's the fun factor, not the "win races" factor. A lot of vets (not all) care more about having a good time, than filling a trophy case.

Am I close???

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10/12/2017 12:31 PM

Let me through a wrench into your thoughts here, vets who ride 125s. It's fun to hold it wide and ride hard and not go very fast while doing it.
Maybe they like the reviness without being scared of the power dilevery like a 450.

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10/12/2017 12:39 PM

^^^ again, fun factor ^^^

(although once you get into the 220lb+ range, the 125 starts to become less fun, methinks)

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10/12/2017 12:40 PM

Just because you have to rev it doesnt mean you have to pin it in every gear. The bike pulls 3rd just about everywhere. Milestone, cahuilla, glen helen, compedge i can stay in 3rd just about the whole time with just a little clutch work here and there. Iam 210lbs so the only real time i feel like its not enough is in real deep stuff where the 450 low end would be nice. Even though its only i think like a lb or 2 lighter then the 450 but it feels much lighter. Out free riding its great, pulls my fatass up hills no problem. None of this means its a great vet bike though so who knows.

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10/12/2017 12:42 PM

Just because you have to rev it doesnt mean you have to pin it in every gear. The bike pulls 3rd just about everywhere. Milestone, cahuilla, glen helen, compedge i can stay in 3rd just about the whole time with just a little clutch work here and there. Iam 210lbs so the only real time i feel like its not enough is in real deep stuff where the 450 low end would be nice. Even though its only i think like a lb or 2 lighter then the 450 but it feels much lighter. Out free riding its great, pulls my fatass up hills no problem. None of this means its a great vet bike though so who knows.

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10/12/2017 12:45 PM

c0ncEpT wrote:

I believe most guys say that because its tame down low compared to a 450. Feels as light as a 250 because of the engine inertia. Has just as much power as a 450 when the throttle is held to the stop.

IMO a 350 has a ton of positives compared to a 450. I just picked up one myself but have yet to ride it due to prior obligations.

All of this! I own a 2015 KTM 350. It's all about staying in control and minimizing mistakes when things get out of hand (which will happen). You also feel like you can push the limits of a 350, similar to a 250, where as a 450 feels like survival.

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10/12/2017 12:46 PM

dirtmike86 wrote:

Just because you have to rev it doesnt mean you have to pin it in every gear. The bike pulls 3rd just about everywhere. Milestone, cahuilla, glen helen, compedge i can stay in 3rd just about the whole time with just a little clutch work here and there. Iam 210lbs so the only real time i feel like its not enough is in real deep stuff where the 450 low end would be nice. Even though its only i think like a lb or 2 lighter then the 450 but it feels much lighter. Out free riding its great, pulls my fatass up hills no problem. None of this means its a great vet bike though so who knows.

If I had ridden a 350 before I bought my 450 I think I would have bought a 350 and you would fit in my shadow. I mentioned in another post a friend that borrowed a KTM 350 for one moto and smoked his class on it. Bone stock, set up for a 155 # true beginner. He didn't touch the clickers, sag, tire pressure nothing. There's something to these 350's.

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The older I get, the faster I was.

10/12/2017 12:51 PM

Hard to explain how good it is. Myself and all my buddies are blown away with how good the 350 is. I have an fc350 17.

It's a little tame down low, BUT that gentle roll on down low is a huge asset. It doesn't fatigue you, doesn't upset the chassis, gets you hooked up and going forward with no drama. As you keep the throttle on it just keeps pulling and pulling..

On many sections where I needed to make a shift on my old bike (15 Kx450) the 350 can do it all in second. You can come out of a corner in second, keep the throttle on and let it eat all the way to the next corner and now be going mach10.

It's amazing how well it handled, brakes are amazing , suspension never gave it a second thought after the first day.

Overall it's an amazing bike. The low to mid is a smooth , mid to top is down right ferocious. It revs like a formula 1engine it feels like seriously. The power spread is unreal. So much usable rpms, almost takes shifting and the engine out of the equation on most tracks letting you focus on hitting your lines. I don't clutch it very much either. I'm 240lbs ntermediate rider.

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10/12/2017 1:25 PM

I'd love to be able to ride one and I've been keeping watch for a ride day near me to try it out since I don't know anyone with a 350 haha. I'm not one to ask people if I can ride their bike either. I'll be the first one to let someone ride mine, but when it comes to asking others, no way! lol

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2017 RMZ450
2005 YZ250-sold :,(
1998 YZ250
2005 KX250F

80% of the time it works every time
IG @hamdaddyof2 & @2HRacing
Thanks to : Factory Effex, N2Dirt, Acerbis, DT1, Fasthouse, Matix, FMF, ASV, 100% & Mika Metals

10/12/2017 2:24 PM

Well I wish I could say I had a 16',17 or 18 350 but I can't. I have a 2012. I honestly love it I have had every size adult bike now all in different brands. I reminds me of when I use to rev out my 250f but then has more than enough to clear jumps with out doing big seat bounces or having to just haul the mail. I got away from 450s because I felt so lazy riding one. The 350 makes me ride hard but not like I have to on my 125 or 250f that's for sure. I am not much of a trail rider but I can see how the 350 would be very good in the woods. Very fun bike I plan to race the +30b class on it next year.

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Vital news is 100% true 30% of the time.

10/12/2017 2:28 PM

It really is a fantastic engine. It is the baby bear's porridge of MX engines - not too much, not too little, just right. Will most likely be my next bike. Waiting to see what the changes on the 2018.5 FE are and then decide to buy a leftover 2018 or wait for a 2019.

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10/12/2017 2:42 PM

When I ride 450s I'm amazed at how much I have to shift. But you have to re learn how to ride fast, be way more aggressive with your braking points and turn in. To go fast on it. But for a normal vet I'm not sure it's the best bike. Most fun bike? probably true.

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10/12/2017 3:17 PM

The 350 is the sh*t- Period.

I'll have one for 19'-

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Current rides-
1988 RM250
2019 KX450

10/12/2017 3:26 PM

I had a '15 350 and now I am riding a Honda 450. The 350 was fine powerwise but I prefer to ride at low RPM on the 450 then the higher reving 350. At low RPM you deflect less off the bumps and the heavier stable feeling of the 450 makes me feel more confident to ride faster when the track gets rough.

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"Who cares about what other people think"

10/12/2017 3:56 PM

I was off a bike for almost 8 years. When the 350 came out, I loved the idea. Last year, I picked up a used 15 350. Previous bikes before quitting, a couple CRF450's, and my last bike was an 07 RM 250. I thought the 350 would be a good transition back into riding with being able to rev it, while getting back into riding shape using the forgiveness of a 4stroke..

At first, I wasn't sure I made the right decision, as it wasn't comfortable and had some handling issues, but come to find out, it was setup for woods, and undersprung. Took care of that, and it's been great. My only problem, is revving it out. I tend to ride it a gear low, and have to remind myself to rev the piss out of it. And when I do, it's can be a beast.

Can anyone tell me how much better a 17/18 would be than a 15? I'm debating on selling and buying new, but I'm pretty happy with it now, and I can't imagine a newer one being worth the cost of upgrading.

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10/12/2017 4:32 PM

Being an older vet rider my last 2 bikes have been 250fs. I’ve always felt over the whole race that I’m faster, and having more fun on the 250. I’ve ridden a few late model 350s and, for me, there are no downsides compared to the 250.

As I’ve written before. If I bought a new MX bike it would be a 350 if I wanted to be as competitive as possible.
After riding a new Husky 125 I’d probably buy one of them instead, for the pure fun of it.

(I’ve actually bought a new FS450, for Supermoto, but haven’t ridden it yet.)

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10/12/2017 6:59 PM

crowe176 wrote:

I was off a bike for almost 8 years. When the 350 came out, I loved the idea. Last year, I picked up a used 15 350. Previous bikes before quitting, a couple CRF450's, and my last bike was an 07 RM 250. I thought the 350 would be a good transition back into riding with being able to rev it, while getting back into riding shape using the forgiveness of a 4stroke..

At first, I wasn't sure I made the right decision, as it wasn't comfortable and had some handling issues, but come to find out, it was setup for woods, and undersprung. Took care of that, and it's been great. My only problem, is revving it out. I tend to ride it a gear low, and have to remind myself to rev the piss out of it. And when I do, it's can be a beast.

Can anyone tell me how much better a 17/18 would be than a 15? I'm debating on selling and buying new, but I'm pretty happy with it now, and I can't imagine a newer one being worth the cost of upgrading.

I rode my brothers '15 KTM for 3 laps and decided to sell my 250SX and look for a 350. I ended up with a '16 Husky and it was so long between rides that I can't really compare but the more I ride this bike the more it feels like it was built specifically for me. It doesn't make a lot of power unless you want it to. Wanna ride it in old guy mode, it's fine with that. Wanna rev it's guts out, it's fine with that too.

On a side note, my brother was at a race on the '15 and had hurt his foot to the point that he couldn't shift but still wanted to race. Stuck the 350 in second gear on the gate and raced both motos, finishing on the podium without ever shifting. Pretty versatile little engine if you ask me.

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10/12/2017 7:18 PM

I think there is an argument that the 350 has the widest usable power band of any bike.

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10/12/2017 8:23 PM

skypig wrote:

I think there is an argument that the 350 has the widest usable power band of any bike.

I'd say for stock bikes that's a strong argument for the 350, no 2 stroke can touch it, no 250f can touch it, not sure any of the 450s rev high enough to offer the same power spread. They might make more but it's not as wide.

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10/12/2017 8:46 PM
Edited Date/Time: 10/12/2017 8:47 PM

In my opinion it's a bike made for guys who grew up on 2-strokes. Growing up on 125s and 250 2-strokes put me into bad habits, I have always overrev'd 450s. I've never been able to adapt to pulling a taller gear and lugging the bike. I did well with 250 4-strokes but they are just too gutless once I outgrew the skill classes and moved into vet A stuff. The 350 is the perfect bike for that. If you wanna cruse around the hit is super mellow and easy to ride. When you wanna rip I can rev this bike to the moon like I've always wanted to and it doesn't go flat. It really rewards aggressive high revving styles when pushed.

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10/12/2017 9:03 PM

dirtmike86 wrote:

Just because you have to rev it doesnt mean you have to pin it in every gear. The bike pulls 3rd just about everywhere. Milestone, cahuilla, glen helen, compedge i can stay in 3rd just about the whole time with just a little clutch work here and there. Iam 210lbs so the only real time i feel like its not enough is in real deep stuff where the 450 low end would be nice. Even though its only i think like a lb or 2 lighter then the 450 but it feels much lighter. Out free riding its great, pulls my fatass up hills no problem. None of this means its a great vet bike though so who knows.

captmoto wrote:

If I had ridden a 350 before I bought my 450 I think I would have bought a 350 and you would fit in my shadow. I mentioned in another post a friend that borrowed a KTM 350 for one moto and smoked his class on it. Bone stock, set up for a 155 # true beginner. He didn't touch the clickers, sag, tire pressure nothing. There's something to these 350's.

I actually had my deposit on a 450 but they got a 350 first and a friend said i wouldnt regret it. I dont.

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10/13/2017 12:36 AM

mx_563 wrote:

I'm interested in the answer to this question as well, because I'm considering this as my next bike.

My understanding, in a nutshell, is that:
1) it makes you *feel* like you are hauling ass.
2) it's easier to lean it and put it where you want than a 450 (less rotating mass)
3) you can rev the piss out of it like you did when you were 18 and the only 4-strokes around were XTs and XRs (nostalgia)
4) yet (in reference to #3) power is more linear than your old 91 RM250 (or whatever you had back then)
5) you can carry a few extra pounds around the mid section and still get a 350 moving (harder to do on a 250F)!

I think it's the fun factor, not the "win races" factor. A lot of vets (not all) care more about having a good time, than filling a trophy case.

Am I close???

1) I would not say that, sure it sounds more than a 450 but still does not sound that much. Some people think it's easier to ride fast on, that could make you feel like you are hauling ass however I was faster on both the 250 and 450.
2) I do not agree with that, being 6'2 and 175lbs sure does help tho.
3) Yes and no, you can but you need to be quite fit to be able to do that for a whole moto.
4) I was born in 98 so no comment blush
5) You can carry a few extra pounds and still make a 125 get moving. One of my ridding buddies smokes my ass (1-2 sec per lap) while weighing 240 lbs even if hes on a 125, 250, 350 or 450. I know because he has ridden them all this year haha..

If you do get a 350 do the following: screenless filter cage, good setup on the forks/shock, check the spokes after every moto and you're golden. If your intention is to race on a more serious level I would consider some other mods such as: suspension revalve or even inserts of your liking. There is really no need for a pipe but what the heck it's cool cool

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