Yamaha XT250 Thread - All things related to the XT from riding to modifications.

Discussion in 'Thumpers' started by RL Lemke, Sep 23, 2018.

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  1. Bobbyh83

    Bobbyh83 Adventurer

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    Any good write ups or videos on the spring upgrades? I understand the basics but would like to see it happen. On the winter/spring list I think.


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    #41
  2. RL Lemke

    RL Lemke Long timer Supporter

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    [​IMG]

    http://www.2ridetheglobe.com/

    After a year on the road, I think I have enough experience using the products and gear that I took along, so I’ve decided to do a review of these. I hope you find this useful in deciding what to take along with you on your journey.

    Bike Gear
    SeatConcepts Seat: [​IMG] (5 / 5) After one year and 53,000km the foam and cover are still like new. Perfect fit. I never would have guessed that a flat seat on a little 250 could be so comfortable for so long. As I’ve said before, if I could only make one modification to this bike before leaving on a trip like this, the Seat Concepts seat kit would be it.

    RaceTech Suspension Modifications: [​IMG] (4 / 5) This is really a combination of rider preference and correct setup for the weight I carried. The XT250 suspension is very soft out of the crate, and RaceTech hadn’t done a lot of XT250s for Round-the-World travel by a 6-foot-plus, 200 pound guy with a lot of off-road experience (let’s face it, that’s not the intended market for this bike). So I wasn’t expecting much when I contacted Matt Wiley at RaceTech to inquire about valving and springs for this old-school-style suspension. Matt was able to put together a set of RaceTech’s Gold Valves and stiffer springs (adapters needed for the rear shock) that worked great. The front fork set-up was spot-on and worked fantastic over the corrugated dirt roads (“ripio”) in Argentina as well as just carving through the paved mountain passes in South America and Europe. The rear shock required a bit more fiddling, and probably needs a slightly softer spring than the one I chose.

    Renthal Handlebars: [​IMG] (5 / 5) Way stronger than the stock bars. Great fit, very comfortable. I consider this a “must-have” if you’re setting off on a long trip, especially if you’re going to spend any amount of time off-road. The stock bars don’t have a cross-bar, and tend to bend when dropped. The Renthals are much stronger. I used the “CR High” bars, which are slightly taller than stock, and slightly wider (you may need to cut the ends of the bars slightly to allow for proper cable reach).

    Oxford Grip Heaterz: [​IMG] (5 / 5) Durable, functional, and easy to use with a great little digital heat controller that is easy to use with winter gloves and never failed. I was surprised how much I used these. The grips held up great with very little wear after 53,000 km. Be sure to follow the glue instructions properly to keep them from coming loose.

    Acerbis Handguards: [​IMG] (4 / 5) Strong, Install-and-forget, Positioning can be limited by brake hose and cables, but there are alternative brackets available that help add clearance in these areas. Either install these before you leave, or pack a bunch of spare levers with you. I had a few tumbles and the bike got blown over by the wind once in South Africa. I never had a damaged lever thanks to these handguards.

    DMO Specialties Wide Footpegs: [​IMG] (5 / 5) Strong, Durable, Comfortable, Easy to install. I’m always nervous about installing aftermarket pegs, because I spend a lot of time standing on them, especially offroad, and if one were to fail, it could be bad. These look as good now as they did when I installed them.

    Happy Trails Pannier and Rear Rack System: [​IMG] (3.5 / 5) The only real system available for the XT250. Fairly good fit though the hardware is cheap (if you install this using their hardware you’ll need to pack a 13mm wrench in your tool kit…nothing else on the bike uses a 13mm wrench). Adaptable to soft or hard panniers. I bought the top plate to put on top of the rear rack (makes a big flat table area), and although the top rack has a bunch of pre-cut holes in it (it’s a universal piece even though it’s sold on their website for the XT250), none of the holes match up to the top rack, and it doesn’t come with any mounting hardware, so you’re on your own to figure out how to mount the top plate to the rack. I ended up welding tabs to the rack so that I could bolt the top rack directly to it. The pannier racks also come with turn signal relocation brackets that aren’t well designed, allowing the turn signals to “droop” over time, and the right rear turn signal can get in the exhaust flow and melt. I tossed the turn signal brackets and welded tabs onto the rear rack to mount my turn signals.

    Holan Nomada Aluminum Panniers: [​IMG] (4.5 / 5) Solid, tough, reliable. After 53,000km and a few crashes and tip-overs, these are still excellent. The gaskets are still perfect and they are still water-tight. The only noticeable wear is in the latches due to me opening them from one end and letting the latch support the lid with my heavy bag strapped to the top of the lid. It’s a shame these aren’t better known in the US; in my opinion they are the absolute best on the market.

    MSR Skid plate: [​IMG] (4 / 5) Easy install; Good fit; Drain plug access good, but still makes a mess when changing oil. Won’t fit CA models without modification (Carbon canister)

    Wolfman Expedition Tank Bag: [​IMG] (4 / 5) Good fit, even on this small bike’s small tank. Lots of storage space and pockets. Install the straps and forget them. Rain cover is far from waterproof.

    Pirelli MT21 tires: [​IMG] (4.5 / 5) Very predictable on and off road, even in the wet; Good fit and good wear considering they are full knobbies. In 53,000km, I never had a single flat tire.

    Sunstar 16T countershaft sprocket: [​IMG] (5 / 5) Good fit, good wear, good gearing choice for distance touring on the XT250.

    RotoPax Fuel and Water Containers & Mounting System:

    1.75 gal fuel: [​IMG] (4.5 / 5)

    3.0 gal fuel: [​IMG] (3 / 5)

    1.0 gal water: [​IMG] (4.5 / 5)

    I should have stayed with the 1.75 gallon fuel container for the entire trip; I didn’t need the 3 gallon container anywhere I went, and the 3 gallon container leaked at the cap most of the time, where the 1.75 gallon never did. The one gallon water container was invaluable in Africa for cooking and daily water needs. The mounting system (with lock) works well, though the lock needed to be lubed occasionally because dirt would get in it because it faced up. Being able to stack two cans and lock them in place was nice.

    Ortlieb 41 Liter Rack Bag: [​IMG] (4.5 / 5) Super tough. Stood up to a lot of abuse, until the RotoPax mount wore a hole through the bottom of it, and of course it was no longer waterproof after that. I will buy another of these bags and take it with me everywhere.

    Kriega Tool Roll: [​IMG] (5 / 5) Took a beating, got thrown in the dirt and on the pavement quite a bit, bounced around inside my PVC tool tube, and never lost a thread or rubbed a hole in it. Had room for more tools than I carried.
    #42
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  3. RL Lemke

    RL Lemke Long timer Supporter

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  4. RL Lemke

    RL Lemke Long timer Supporter

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    #44
  5. mnuttall87

    mnuttall87 Been here awhile

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    #45
  6. Bobbyh83

    Bobbyh83 Adventurer

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    Tire time. Tried to go trail riding but had to cut it short. Muddy down here and these stock tires are awful. Dunlop 606? Can’t I go up a size In the rear? What does that make it?


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    #46
  7. RL Lemke

    RL Lemke Long timer Supporter

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    606 knobby tires have been around for years. Never cared for them. I’m going with the new hybrid tires. Best of trials and knobby tires. Superior trail grip.

    #47
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  8. Bobbyh83

    Bobbyh83 Adventurer

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    I really enjoyed the bike today though. Good balance of power if it could have transitioned to the ground. I appreciated the low weight a few times lol. I’ll take the blame for one or two, but those dang tires just wouldn’t grab anything. Cute little front fender filled up with mud, locked the tire and dumped me the last time. It’s gone.


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  9. Bucho

    Bucho DAMNrider

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    I still run a D606 on the rear of my dualsport bike (DR650). Its not the best offroad tire but they also dont get instantly destroyed with road riding. If you will see very little pavement then skip these and get something better. The above video has some much better offroad tires.

    I used to run a Pirelli MT43 on the rear of my old KTM300 enduro bike. I thought it was a great tire. Hooked up for me offroad and seemed to last FOREVER. I think Id try one on the rear of my DR if I could find the right size.

    On my current enduro bike Ive tried some of the hybrid tires. I had a Kenda Equilibrium which was a great tire. Just because I wanted to try something new I tried a Shinko 505cheater. I think I like the Shinko a tiny bit better but they are both very good offroad tires.
    #49
  10. twinrider

    twinrider Pass the catnip

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    I'm about to mount an IRC TR-011 Tourist trials tire on my XT250. It's a Japan model so the rear wheel is tubeless and the Tourist is tubeless as well as approved for road use. The front will be a Pirelli MT-21.
    #50
  11. millman84

    millman84 Been here awhile

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    Don't forget about the Michelin T63. It is not the smoothest on road but it does well off road and excels in sand untill it gets a little warn.
    #51
  12. RL Lemke

    RL Lemke Long timer Supporter

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    The part of the above video that appealed the most was not tearing up the trails.

    If I can get all the traction, and in the rocks better traction, without unnecessary trail damage, wants not to like?

    The main consideration for a rider choosing tires is where you ride. Different tires for different uses. There is no one universal perfect tire.
    #52
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  13. Bobbyh83

    Bobbyh83 Adventurer

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    Thanks again guys. I’m still shopping online. I like the hybrids bud need some pretty Aggressive tires for local stuff. Might get something closer to a trials tire for Colorado next year though.

    Can we talk boots here? Feel like I should get some. Put my feet down more than I expected. Not sure my size and no great local shops. I’m a 10 1/2 in cowboy boots and 11.5 in Nike or under armour tennis shoes. What size would that put me I. Riding boots? Sorry if this is the wrong place but I’m learning a lot from you guys


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  14. mnuttall87

    mnuttall87 Been here awhile

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    Lots of MX boots are sized in euro sizes. I wear the same size in Nikes which would put you at either a 45 or 46 in the euro size, or just get a size 11 to match your other boots. Don't want them too tight.

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    #54
  15. RL Lemke

    RL Lemke Long timer Supporter

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    Always default to the larger end of what the conversion charts indicate because you could be wearing thick MX socks. Room for the deer to spread out. I find Euro size conversion indications tight.

    I have a boot discussion above.
    #55
  16. ZiggyInNc

    ZiggyInNc Been here awhile

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    One other thing to consider and that would be nice to see on this chart is fuel requirement. Although I kind of like the 310gs and WR250R both of those require premium fuel which can be hard to find in remote areas. Not sure about all the others on this list.
    #56
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  17. Bobbyh83

    Bobbyh83 Adventurer

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    What tire irons and other tools to swap them myself? Also looking at the harbor freight tire changer. Do I need to order any bearings or other items to change while it’s all apart?


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    #57
  18. Bucho

    Bucho DAMNrider

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    I agree with you. I like riding and trying NOT to spin my rear tire. I've really liked using the trials type and hybrid tires. Others have told me how they feel the trials tires are terrible and don't hook up at all. But these also tend to be guys who are very aggressive, ride MX bikes, and are constantly roosting around.
    The trials type tires work much much better when you don't break traction.
    #58
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  19. Xiola_Blue

    Xiola_Blue You Can Build Your Muscles Picking Strawberries...

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    Boots... glorious boots. It took me 4 trys to land on a set of Alpine Stars Corazol adventure boots. I got them for $250 on sale and with a coupon. I know, I know... Lots of $$$. But I tried cheaper ones and they all failed. These guys are less bulky than MX boots so they fit the pegs and controls well IMO. They open wide with simple Velcro up top and only 2 buckles to mess with down low. There are also waterproof to upper shin with their "drystar" design.

    I've been beating them up for a few months now. I pressure wash them clean and hang em over a peet boot dryer. I love em.
    #59
  20. RL Lemke

    RL Lemke Long timer Supporter

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    Boots, like seats and helmets, are very personal as our needs and fit are different.

    Heck, I have two very different street boots, MX boots and now adventure boots. Each serves a different purpose.

    The reason I selected a different boot for the XT250 is because I wanted an aggressive sole to get traction on trail surfaces. Very different from the other boots where sliding is important. In other words, a boot that is good for slow.

    The reason I posted the NeverWet spray is because this amazing hydrophobic coating will keep the leather drier, regardless of the waterproof membrane underneath. Cleaner too.

    #60