XR400 vs CRF450X

Discussion in 'Thumpers' started by Bigdog54, Oct 24, 2012.

  1. Bigdog54

    Bigdog54 MX X-Over Adventurer

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    Jacksonville Florida
    Hello everyone. I am looking to get your input on a decision I've been trying to make.

    Quick history. Stopped racing MX due to back surgeries. Sold my 07 CRF450R and
    purchased[​IMG] a 2011 BMW 1200GS. Great bike but a tad heavy on dual sport rides and tight stuff is just plain painful. I'm looking to get a bike[​IMG] for running Dual Sports 2 or 3 times a year and playing in the woods here in Florida. Must be tagged.

    The devil in me wants the CRF450X for the power and
    performance[​IMG] and updated components. I am cautioned by the higher maintenance (over the XR) and additional subsystems (liquid cooled or air cooled). I know the bike is more than what I need for trails, fire raods, and tight trail riding, but like I said the devil side dont care. I am looking at a used 2006 model that is already plated.

    The sensabile side of me wants the XR because it is bullet proof and should never die, unless I neglect it. I have not riden a XR400 so I'm scared it will be to "doggish" and that the
    handling[​IMG] will be sluggish. I owned an 87 XR600 when I was young but I know they should not compare in the power department. I like that it's air cooled and that the engine isn't "pushed" close to the limit. I'd rather it have Electric Start but thats not a deal breaker. I am looking at a plated 2001 to 2004.

    Other option is a DRZ400, but I've already owned one of these and were'nt overly impressed.

    I'm short so I plan to have what ever I get slightly lowered and revalved so I'm not on my tippy toes all the time. I'm in Florida so I'm having to look out of state for a used Tagged bike. Gotta admit that scares me also.

    So, based on this what is everyones option on a direction?

    1. CRF450X
    2. XR400

    Comments are appreciated, Thanks
    #1
  2. Rockcat

    Rockcat LDA

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    I had a plated '97 XR 400 that I replaced with a '07 KTM 450 EXC when they first came out. I still miss the XR. The XR handling is far from sluggish and while the power is no match for my KTM it was fine. The XR 400 is a great trail bike, not a great race bike.
    #2
  3. LDL

    LDL Adventurer

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    Hey there Big Dog 54 , I'm in the same boat as you . Been eyeballing the CRF250X just because of the magic button , I'm 54 and would rather not have to try and kick start the bike once I go down , and I know me , I'll be going down. My other choise is a 2000 to 2004 XR 400 R , these are supposed to be bullit proof ,and last forever if well taken care of , and with far less mainteance . So with that being said I'm going to lean on the side of the XR and just enjoy kicking it !
    #3
  4. laramie LC4

    laramie LC4 crash test dummy!

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    xr400, no question. i absolutely love mine. every time i ride that bike i walk away with a big grin on my face. it's not the fastest bike, but in the tight stuff it can't be beat. the thing turns on a dime, is soft as a couch to ride, skinny as a meth head, and is bullet proof. maintenance consists of changing the air filter each ride, oil every 3 (because i'm anal), and gas before you take off. thats it. i have thrashed that poor thing to hell and back and ridden it against many newer, more powerful bikes. it always seems to find a way to make it though and because of that, it WILL ALWAYS be in my garage. i will never sell it. period, full stop.

    laramie :beer
    #4
  5. Bigdog54

    Bigdog54 MX X-Over Adventurer

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    The XR is where I'm leaning but I'm having trouble finding one close that's tagged and NOT clapped out.
    #5
  6. sintax

    sintax Been here awhile

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    I know you did not mention this, but since you are in the research phases i'll throw it out there.

    The XR650R is a great bike. Its a happy spot between the all out high strung 450, and the doggish 400 (it is). The 400 makes a great putting around bike and if thats your plan, go for it. The 650R is more modern, better ergos, power, suspension (once modified, easy to do yourself) and is just as bullet proof as the XR400.
    #6
  7. trailrider383

    trailrider383 867-5309

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    I replaced my XR400R with a CRF450X. I have never missed the 400. The CRF is still plugging away after 6000 miles. Maintenance is just as easy as the XR. Performance is worlds better on the CRF. I never wanted a water cooled bike but it has never been an issue. Power baby!!!!
    #7
  8. blake716

    blake716 nine toes

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    I like the XR400, I really do. I've never owned one, but I've spent a good amount of time on one. It's a lot of fun to ride.

    The CRF450X, I've never owned one of these either. I rode one, but not much. Just kind of putted around on it.

    If I had to pick one, I'd go with the CRF. But what do I know, like I said, I've never owned either one. :D
    #8
  9. mookybird

    mookybird Gramps

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    It's hard for me not to defend the old xr4, I paid 1500 for mine and this past August rode it in a circle from home here in the northwest to baja up through the black hills of south dakota and back home. It performed flawlessly and kick starting it has been a total non issue.

    I suspect it's a dog in comparison to the other two but most of my riding is in pretty restrictive woods or narrow forest service roads where you can't ever see far enough to run very fast,

    I've looked at and suspect one of these days I'll pick up a clean xr650r but I also intend to buy the next really clean 400 I find, for the asking price I think these offer a lot and as long as I'm able to tear off into the woods I'll keep one in the garage.
    #9
  10. trailrider383

    trailrider383 867-5309

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    Oh yeah I just remembered a problem XR400's can have. You can't get the swingarm pivot bolt out to grease the bearings if the previous owners haven't taken care of them. Here is one thread on the subject. :eek1

    http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=532835

    [​IMG]
    #10
  11. Lars1974

    Lars1974 Been here awhile

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    I have owned a CRF450X until it got stolen and i loved it.

    However i have replaced it with an XR400 and for trails and enduro stuff its just as good if not easier to ride due to softer power delivery etc...

    The CRF was great but now I am almost converted to the XR...

    Just my 2 cents worth....
    #11
  12. Bigdog54

    Bigdog54 MX X-Over Adventurer

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    Thanks for all the comments. I'm looking at a 2001 Xr400 from an inmate in Texas. Thats were I'm leaning.

    Im not old, BUT the older I get the more I appreciate bullet proof bikes that last forever. Fun is starting to outweight performance. I can justify giving up some performance for longevity. Also, when it comes to trail riding (dual sports) slow power is often times faster in the long run.
    #12
  13. miguelitro

    miguelitro Chuchaqui

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    I would take the XR anyday. I have ridden both in CA and Baja single track and raced both in southern CA Hare Scrambles and though i prefer the xr650r for nearly all riding except very technical singletrack(where a 2 stroke is king) i would rather ride the smooth tractable power of the XR400 over the 450x if i was not a 650r addict.
    Mike
    #13
  14. Bultaco206

    Bultaco206 Back-to-back motos suck

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    I raced an XR400 in the woods for several years. Once rolling, the weight disappears and they can find traction anywhere. A little front-heavy for sand. And they fly like a sack of feed. But throw even a small amount of maintenance at it and it will run forever. I always thought the bike was one that didn't do any one thing outstanding, but did a lot of different things well.

    It's the one bike I regret selling the most of any I've ever had.
    #14
  15. MartiniUp

    MartiniUp Long timer

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    If it means anything I am on my fourth one(XR4). Everytime I get bored and sell one I get a strange itch. Only way to cure it is another. I have been riding/racing for 40+ years and its the only bike that has had this effect. I currently enduro and HS a CR250 but my XR4 is plated and is the sweet thing in my shop. Just get a nice one and see what happens. Easily sold if you decide to go another direction.
    #15
  16. laramie LC4

    laramie LC4 crash test dummy!

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    i would say "smooth" power is the key to speed, and longevity. both for the bike and yourself and the XR400 has it in spades. there are very few places i get left behind, and that's here in the wide-open dez. if i'm in the tight, you had better watch out.

    i was given my xr400 from a ridding buddy who was moving and did not want to mess with it. it had not run for years and he didn't want to deal with moving it. i spent a little cash, got it running, then recently did a total rebuild. new piston (11:1), new rod, bored to 416, new kibble white valves, guides, and springs, and lightly ported and polished the head. it is even better now than it was before and i did almost all the work my self. i had the crank done by a pro, but the rest was in my garage. the whole thing cost me under $1000 and i'm sorry, you just cant beat that. :clap

    laramie :beer
    #16
  17. robl110

    robl110 Adventurer

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    I ended up with an 05 crf450x since I am 6' 5". So far I like it. Spent more than I expected making it street legal but its been a fun project.
    #17
  18. eakins

    eakins Butler Maps

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    i had an xr400. loved it.
    if it had an electric starter, i'd still own it today.
    #18
  19. eakins

    eakins Butler Maps

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    so you know, black type is hard for most all of adv user to read.

    #19
  20. n16ht5

    n16ht5 ride the night

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    XR400. they can go anywhere a CRF can go and go longer
    #20