Yamaha 125 Advice

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8/29/2018 9:10 AM

Reaching out to see what everyone thinks (great idea, i know). I have ridden 4 strokes for the last 10 years and am going to be picking up a 125 2 stroke to kind of get back to my roots and bring the fun and affordability back to riding. In the past, i have owned several steel framed YZ's and loved them - but i never have had the chance to ride an aluminum framed one (2005 and up). Are they any better? worth the extra $$? Any help and shit talking appreciated!

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8/29/2018 9:13 AM

The suspension is way better

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8/29/2018 9:15 AM

kb228 wrote:

The suspension is way better

Any years in particular that are better than others? i know the motors haven't changed that much, but i wasn't sure about suspension.....

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8/29/2018 9:20 AM

kb228 wrote:

The suspension is way better

Motox627! wrote:

Any years in particular that are better than others? i know the motors haven't changed that much, but i wasn't sure about suspension.....

2006+ have the SSS forks

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8/29/2018 9:20 AM

I had both steel and aluminum frame YZ's and I personally felt more comfortable on the steel frame.

I don't think one is any better than the other, just different. Both great.

Of course the newer models have better suspension but that's nothing that can't be fixed. Same thing for the aesthetic of the bike. Put the newer plastics on and you'll have a modern looking bike.

Can't go wrong with the YZ.

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"Sorry Goose, but it's time to buzz the tower."

8/29/2018 9:23 AM

-MAVERICK- wrote:

I had both steel and aluminum frame YZ's and I personally felt more comfortable on the steel frame.

I don't think one is any better than the other, just different. Both great.

Of course the newer models have better suspension but that's nothing that can't be fixed. Same thing for the aesthetic of the bike. Put the newer plastics on and you'll have a modern looking bike.

Can't go wrong with the YZ.

Appreciate the input! My favorite bike I've ever owned was a '99 YZ125, so that's the direction i am leaning, but thought i would ask to see what everyone else thought...

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8/29/2018 9:26 AM

I have ridden four stroke 250's & 450's for over 10 years as well.

I got my son a used 2005 YZ125 and rode it a few times and could believe how much fun it was to ride and ride well. Not as easy as a 250F but sounds like you know that going in.

The bug bit me and I have a 2017 YZ250 to go with the 125 and I love both bikes. Same mindset, fun and affordability.

If you got a 2005 and up at least they haven't changed it for so long that parts are readily available and there are plastic kits to make it look new.

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8/29/2018 9:26 AM

kb228 wrote:

The suspension is way better

Motox627! wrote:

Any years in particular that are better than others? i know the motors haven't changed that much, but i wasn't sure about suspension.....

The motors have changed. 05 was a fairly revised engine, and as far as chassis, I believe the aluminum bikes are approx 9 lbs lighter than the 04 and earlier steel frame bikes. I had a new 05 and it was a fantastic bike. I read that refinement to the 06 and up makes those the best choices if available. Best of luck in your bike search, let us know how it works out for you.

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8/29/2018 9:31 AM

Pretty much any year, except the 05. 97-04 steel frame, then '06 or newer aluminum. Best frame '04, best fork 06+.

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8/29/2018 9:32 AM

-MAVERICK- wrote:

I had both steel and aluminum frame YZ's and I personally felt more comfortable on the steel frame.

I don't think one is any better than the other, just different. Both great.

Of course the newer models have better suspension but that's nothing that can't be fixed. Same thing for the aesthetic of the bike. Put the newer plastics on and you'll have a modern looking bike.

Can't go wrong with the YZ.

Motox627! wrote:

Appreciate the input! My favorite bike I've ever owned was a '99 YZ125, so that's the direction i am leaning, but thought i would ask to see what everyone else thought...

If you can try and get a few rides on an aluminum frame YZ that would be great. That way you can get a real feel for it before saying you like it or hate it.

I know I loved my '04 YZ 125.

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"Sorry Goose, but it's time to buzz the tower."

8/29/2018 9:37 AM

loftyair wrote:

Pretty much any year, except the 05. 97-04 steel frame, then '06 or newer aluminum. Best frame '04, best fork 06+.

What was wrong with the 05?

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

80% of the time it works every time
IG @hammerfamily_4 & @2HRacing
Thanks to : Factory Effex, N2Dirt, Acerbis, DT1, Fasthouse, Matix, FMF, ASV, 100% & Mika Metals

8/29/2018 9:44 AM

I was told that a steely with sss and an 09+ 450f swingarm is magical

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8/29/2018 9:52 AM

loftyair wrote:

Pretty much any year, except the 05. 97-04 steel frame, then '06 or newer aluminum. Best frame '04, best fork 06+.

mattyhamz2 wrote:

What was wrong with the 05?

Nothing really. Yamaha switched to the aluminum frame in 2005 and in 2006 they introduced the SSS suspension which is superior to what the '05 YZ's had.

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"Sorry Goose, but it's time to buzz the tower."

8/29/2018 9:54 AM

loftyair wrote:

Pretty much any year, except the 05. 97-04 steel frame, then '06 or newer aluminum. Best frame '04, best fork 06+.

mattyhamz2 wrote:

What was wrong with the 05?

Nothing. Not SSS, turns some folks off, but AOSS fork works just fine, shock's fine too. Bought my '05 for $1,700 in '11 and haven't looked back.

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8/29/2018 10:06 AM

loftyair wrote:

Pretty much any year, except the 05. 97-04 steel frame, then '06 or newer aluminum. Best frame '04, best fork 06+.

mattyhamz2 wrote:

What was wrong with the 05?

Ted722 wrote:

Nothing. Not SSS, turns some folks off, but AOSS fork works just fine, shock's fine too. Bought my '05 for $1,700 in '11 and haven't looked back.

That's why I was asking. I have an 05 250 and love it. I had the forks setup for me and I have no problems with them at all. I was doing some reading about them vs the SSS and found they are easy to work on and setup because they don't have as many parts inside. I don't see any reason to drop $500 on SSS forks.

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

80% of the time it works every time
IG @hammerfamily_4 & @2HRacing
Thanks to : Factory Effex, N2Dirt, Acerbis, DT1, Fasthouse, Matix, FMF, ASV, 100% & Mika Metals

8/29/2018 10:18 AM

Pre SSs is not bad, but SSs is great. The condition it comes in, or the time/money spent, all makes a bike. What works for some, others have a problem with. You can take a Chinese bike and make it incredible, by replacing everything with good stuff. Likewise, take the new husky, add shitty stuff, and you get a shitty husky.

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8/29/2018 10:18 AM
Edited Date/Time: 8/29/2018 11:05 AM

If you are tall and more used to the newer 4 strokes, the Aluminum frame will feel more comfy to you. I have both and the steel frame just feels a tad more cramped in the cockpit than the aluminum frame - and I'm 6'. I have SSS forks on my steel framed 125 and I put a 09' 250F top triple clamp with the 4 way adjustable bar mounts in the forward holes (in the 2nd most forward position) on mine and made it feel a lot better.
Also, the motor on the newer bike feels like it has a little more grunt down low, and it revs a little quicker than the long-rod 04' and below motor. The older motor seems to have a little more top end pull though. This is probably minor stuff to most people.
Just some tidbits of info that I noticed, since I have ridden them back-to-back several times.

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8/29/2018 10:25 AM

Get an 06 or newer, the steel framed one was a 5 speed and I didn't like it. In 06 the put the SSS forks on it that are great!

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8/29/2018 10:37 AM
Edited Date/Time: 8/29/2018 10:39 AM

jankymike wrote:

Get an 06 or newer, the steel framed one was a 5 speed and I didn't like it. In 06 the put the SSS forks on it that are great!

Yeah, I didn't like the 5 speed in mine either. I ended up putting an older bottom end (99 ??) with the 6 speed in mine. Much better. The 02'-04' were 5 speeds.
You can make the steel framed bike work as good as the newer one, but it takes a little work.

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8/29/2018 10:48 AM

Here's my personal journey:
2003 YZ125, steel frame - Sweet. smile
2004 YZ250F, steel frame - not so sweet. sad
2005 YZ125, Aluminum frame - SUPER SWEEET! cool

That '05 was flickable and light! I can only imagine an '06 or newer with the better suspension.

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Braaapin' aint easy.

8/29/2018 11:36 AM

I appreciate everyone's input. i know it all boils down to how you feel when you ride each and every bike. Put 10 guys on the same bike and get 10 different opinions, but it is helpful to read the good/bad of each. The last YZ i had was a 99 (back in 2000) and then jumped to 4 strokes in 2003 and have been on Hondas since 2010.... Although thru the years, that 99 YZ still sticks in my head as my favorite bike so far.....

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8/29/2018 12:53 PM

Kx125rider wrote:

I was told that a steely with sss and an 09+ 450f swingarm is magical

What's the benefit of the 450 swinger? I would have thought they would be considerably heavier to deal with the flex from the torque of the 450 motor.

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8/29/2018 1:27 PM

Kx125rider wrote:

I was told that a steely with sss and an 09+ 450f swingarm is magical

pdub187 wrote:

What's the benefit of the 450 swinger? I would have thought they would be considerably heavier to deal with the flex from the torque of the 450 motor.

Nope! The 09' and up four stroke swingarm is significantly lighter than the two stroke swingarm. MXA did a test of the conversion some time ago and they could notice a difference while riding. Something about 'unsprung weight'... :-)

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8/29/2018 1:30 PM

Kx125rider wrote:

I was told that a steely with sss and an 09+ 450f swingarm is magical

pdub187 wrote:

What's the benefit of the 450 swinger? I would have thought they would be considerably heavier to deal with the flex from the torque of the 450 motor.

Check out Josh's post in the build section. He goes into more detail about it. Its like 5mm longer and has a different rising rate or something like that. Can't remember everything off the top of my head

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

80% of the time it works every time
IG @hammerfamily_4 & @2HRacing
Thanks to : Factory Effex, N2Dirt, Acerbis, DT1, Fasthouse, Matix, FMF, ASV, 100% & Mika Metals

8/29/2018 1:46 PM

Who is Josh? Sorry.

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8/29/2018 1:49 PM

pdub187 wrote:

Who is Josh? Sorry.

JM485. sorry couldn't remember his Vital name for a minute, only his IG haha. Here's the link

https://www.vitalmx.com/forums/Bike-Builds,46/YZ250-Swingarm-Update-the-Right-Way-Not-the-MXA-way,1330601

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

80% of the time it works every time
IG @hammerfamily_4 & @2HRacing
Thanks to : Factory Effex, N2Dirt, Acerbis, DT1, Fasthouse, Matix, FMF, ASV, 100% & Mika Metals

8/29/2018 2:18 PM
Edited Date/Time: 8/29/2018 2:51 PM

I love my YZ125!

The aluminum frame/sss combo is the cats ass. The older steel frames with the 46mm forks will always have a place in my garage though. Great bikes.


Photo

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8/29/2018 3:10 PM

Purchased a 04 YZ125 for my son back in 2009, I liked it so much that I purchased an 05 YZ125 for myself. The 04 could rail a tight berm better than the 05, which was the only difference that I could honestly tell. The suspension on both bike's were set up the same.

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