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Old 07-18-2009, 03:49 PM   #1
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DRZ400 vs. RMZ 450 or others

alright im getting a little sick of riding street in houston. to ride safely all you can really focus on is not dying. so ive been thinking of returning to the dirt.
5250 103425844266 763134266 1975079 7546069 n

i have a DRZ 400 that i keep in colorado that ive ridden for years. now before i moved i was looking into buying an RMZ 450 for more power since i had squezed every bit out of the 400 that i could. i can honestly say that i was out riding the bike in some instances. also i was starting to ride at the track a bit more and wanted something more suited for jumping. now my question is this:

how does the 450 compare to the 400?
now i know they are two completely different machines and there is no real performance comparison. maintenance is my main concern. i dont have a problem changing the oil every 3 or 4 rides, chain lube, all the regulars. but ive heard rumors (BS im almost certain) that you have to rebuild the top end every 25 hours almost like you would a two stroke. someone tell me this is bullshit... i like the ease of the drz in that respect. i want something i can ride and not be working on all the dam time.

trail riding is more my thing, though i would be riding some track as well. the other bikes i was looking at are KTMs. though i cant tell the difference between the 450sx, exc, xc, xc-w. if anyone could shed some light on that, that would be awesome. any other good machines out there im overlooking?

woah that was long.

cliffys: what are the maintenance requirements for an RMZ 450?
any suggestions for a solid trail/track bike alternative?
THANKS!!
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Old 07-18-2009, 09:37 PM   #2
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Quote:
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how does the 450 compare to the 400?
now i know they are two completely different machines and there is no real performance comparison. maintenance is my main concern. i dont have a problem changing the oil every 3 or 4 rides, chain lube, all the regulars. but ive heard rumors (BS im almost certain) that you have to rebuild the top end every 25 hours almost like you would a two stroke. someone tell me this is bullshit... i like the ease of the drz in that respect. i want something i can ride and not be working on all the dam time.

Going from a drz400 to an rmz450 would roughly equate to switching from a v-strom650 to a gixxer750... it will feel much faster & infinitely lighter/ more nimble; Regarding maintenance the main differance will be valve adjustment interval, though it will be more crucial to keep the oil/ filters (oil/air) clean on the rmz (typically clean af after every ride, change the oil every other ride & oil filter every other oil change). Unless the bike is severerly abused &/or not maintained top ends are generally not frequently required.

trail riding is more my thing, though i would be riding some track as well. the other bikes i was looking at are KTMs. though i cant tell the difference between the 450sx, exc, xc, xc-w. if anyone could shed some light on that, that would be awesome. any other good machines out there im overlooking?

The sx's are an mx bike... the 450 will have a 4-sp. tranny, no kickstand & until 08 no electric start... the rest are more enduro/ trail oriented (5/6 sp. electric start, kickstand, & slightly larger fuel tank)

woah that was long.

cliffys: what are the maintenance requirements for an RMZ 450?
any suggestions for a solid trail/track bike alternative?
THANKS!!
.
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Old 07-20-2009, 12:39 AM   #3
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RMZ power wheelies in top gear. DRZ does not. RMZ goes 1000 miles max between extensive maintenance, DRZ's go 50k miles with regular oil changes.

I see 450 after 450 blown up, needing heads, pistons, motors.... Rarely do you see a (stock) DRZ with engine issues.

I'd stick with the DRZ and work on your riding skills to take it to the next level. When you are 100% sure the DRZ can't handle what you have, bump up. But be prepared for mechanical headaches aplenty.

FWIW, I have 4 hours on a DRZ and 10 minutes on a RMZ, that's all.
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Old 07-20-2009, 12:46 AM   #4
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my drz400 sm is slow compared to others but it's clockwork..only thing to do is install a mcct(Manual Cam Chain Tensioner)
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Old 07-20-2009, 12:05 PM   #5
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.
thanks, so are the trail oriented KTMs still capable of track riding? one of the issues i was having with the drz was out riding the suspension and it was a little heavy.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr.P View Post
RMZ power wheelies in top gear. DRZ does not. RMZ goes 1000 miles max between extensive maintenance, DRZ's go 50k miles with regular oil changes.

I see 450 after 450 blown up, needing heads, pistons, motors.... Rarely do you see a (stock) DRZ with engine issues.

I'd stick with the DRZ and work on your riding skills to take it to the next level. When you are 100% sure the DRZ can't handle what you have, bump up. But be prepared for mechanical headaches aplenty.

FWIW, I have 4 hours on a DRZ and 10 minutes on a RMZ, that's all.
yea thats my main concern is having to rebuild the engine every ten minutes. im used to the drz reliability, in the five years and tons of miles ive had it all its required is basic maintenance. thanks for the input.
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Old 07-20-2009, 12:30 PM   #6
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stock my 400 was a slow . After making the motor breathe a lot better (bigger carb, silencer and header, and the 3x3 mod), it feels closer to a 400cc bike than before, but still lacks some power. I am comparing this to my 426 that feels like a 426cc+ bike.

my 426 is in constant need for valve checking/adjustments

now I just need some dirt wheels for the drz to run that in the forest.

Last edited by hotnanas; 07-20-2009 at 12:32 PM.
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Old 07-20-2009, 12:36 PM   #7
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Quote:
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thanks, so are the trail oriented KTMs still capable of track riding? one of the issues i was having with the drz was out riding the suspension and it was a little heavy. Yes very much so, the smallbore ktm 4strokes & all their 2strokes are very lightweight, nimble & have very competitive suspension. The big bore 4strokes are a little heavier but still a blast to ride.



yea thats my main concern is having to rebuild the engine every ten minutes. im used to the drz reliability, in the five years and tons of miles ive had it all its required is basic maintenance. thanks for the input.

My current ride is a ktm 525exc... It has over 230hrs on it & has never had any major engine work done to it; no top ends, clutches... nothing. Just regular oil/ filter changes, valve checks (occasional adjustment needed) & air filter cleaning. I have been riding (abusing) it for over 3yrs now & it has been a fantastic bike, It still is much more bike than I need. I dont feel comfortable with it on an mx track but I'm not much of an mx kind of dude... Others I know with similar bikes dont hesitate to take theirs to the track
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Old 07-20-2009, 12:38 PM   #8
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I have a clean CRF 450 with only 26.8 hrs on it.
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Old 07-20-2009, 01:22 PM   #9
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stock my 400 was a slow . After making the motor breathe a lot better (bigger carb, silencer and header, and the 3x3 mod), it feels closer to a 400cc bike than before, but still lacks some power. I am comparing this to my 426 that feels like a 426cc+ bike.

my 426 is in constant need for valve checking/adjustments

now I just need some dirt wheels for the drz to run that in the forest.
yea i hear ya. i wouldnt call my drz slow per se, but i definitely got into situations where i wish i had a lighter faster bike. im not getting rid of it or anything. still a great bike.


Quote:
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.
wow thanks again man. i was starting to seriously consider the KTM and i think you may have just sold me. everything else i have read about them sounds really good too. 5 speed tranny for open fire roads, headlight for linking trails on the highway and at least appearing street legal...all good stuff.
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Old 07-20-2009, 01:27 PM   #10
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i guess when i say slow ...i was expecting a higher hp reading from my dyno out of the 400cc motor.

i love the bike and is the only dirt bike i have with e-start!
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Old 07-20-2009, 01:42 PM   #11
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what you have e start? mine is kick only. its an 01 400s or r. i dont remember the letter but its the offroad version.

we may be different sizes too. at 5'11" and 145 that thing moves me around pretty good. but still, nothing like being at the top of a 200 foot hill climb trying to pop over the rock face on top and reaching for a little more power only to come up empty handed....UGH!
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Old 07-20-2009, 01:51 PM   #12
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yours came with the better carb and more open air box (i think). mine is the 07 sm model...i think yours is an e model or something like that.

i wish mine came with a kick start lever too though. the battery on these things sucks.
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Old 07-20-2009, 01:59 PM   #13
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my 99 Dr350se is a work horse. 11k miles on it and it runs like a champ, I only have used synthetic and check and maintain frequently but it runs good. I can say that the power on a true 450 is so much torquier and I'm thinking of adding a crf450 to the list as a supermoto because i want something that scares me into riding sensibly, the dr has plenty of power for the trails and some stand-up 3 gears on the concrete so its a toss up
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Old 07-20-2009, 03:57 PM   #14
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Quote:
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yours came with the better carb and more open air box (i think). mine is the 07 sm model...i think yours is an e model or something like that.

i wish mine came with a kick start lever too though. the battery on these things sucks.
I modified my box to fit a YTZ10S and then modified my harness to get better charging.
If you need some help with it, give me a call.
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Old 07-20-2009, 04:03 PM   #15
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I modified my box to fit a YTZ10S and then modified my harness to get better charging.
If you need some help with it, give me a call.
Thanks! I have actually looked into doing this, but I am afraid of exposing the back of the battery to rocks. If anyone has horrible luck, it would be me. I have considered going outward and melting/reshaping the rear number plate.
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Old 07-20-2009, 04:04 PM   #16
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Quote:
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I modified my box to fit a YTZ10S and then modified my harness to get better charging.
If you need some help with it, give me a call.
indeed,

www.thumpertalk.com has tons of ways to make those bikes faster and for cheap!

the most mods people do is mcct, bigger exhaust, the 3x3 mod, the 'free power mod'(which is the modified for better charging) and maybe a flat side carb, mine is all stock and it's great for me, and i've owned gsxr 1000's ...i guess now that im a little older i dont feel i need some liter bike or something....but the drz400sm is just perfect for me now days...and super easy to wheelie
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Old 07-20-2009, 04:12 PM   #17
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The wiring is easy to do and should be done by any DRZ owner IMO.
You can also easily make a shield to attach to the rear battery support if you're concerned about rocks hitting it, just use a thin piece of plastic.
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Old 07-20-2009, 04:14 PM   #18
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Quote:
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The wiring is easy to do and should be done by any DRZ owner IMO.
You can also easily make a shield to attach to the rear battery support if you're concerned about rocks hitting it, just use a thin piece of plastic.
the free power wiring? if so, i have been wanting to get this done.
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Old 07-20-2009, 04:15 PM   #19
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Yep.
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Old 07-25-2009, 11:55 PM   #20
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i just fixed my 350 havent really test it yet. ill post up after some abuse
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