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Old April 1st, 2019, 08:56 AM   #1
Ducati999
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Smoker advice

Hello everyone,
I have just about completed my latest project, which I will make another thread for with pics, and my job just gave me a fat raise. This leaves me with extra $ in the "Bike" budget and since I have 2 V twins, it would be smart to stick with the same engine layout for the next purchase. Some of you know how incredible my little wife is and she has just authorized me to purchase a 250 2 stroke! My limited knowledge of these bikes has led me to desire an NSR250 Honda. What I would ask of the vast Ninjette community would be: #1 What year NSR, #2 Would Yamaha, Suzuki, Kawasaki be better and why, #3 What else am I missing? My plan is to register and use it on the street mostly but there is no way I will not bring it out onto the track also. I am over 200LBS so I know that I will need to lose weight to fully appreciate what they have to offer and I know they are smaller than the Ninja 250 but I have 2 other bikes so its not going to be my only ride. I have rebuilt many smokers, anything from dirtbike singles, Yamaha 2 cyl and even a Kawai Water Buffalo triple so maint is not an issue.

I now have a nice version of my original dream bike-Ducati 916-My 999 and next will be the final bike I have lusted after the 250 Twin street bike. I appreciate any feed back anyone may have on these bikes as I have only read about them and looked at a few in real life but never owned/rode one. I have the info for the company in NJ that imports them from Japan but I want as much info as possible before I call and put them on the hunt for my new toy.

Thank you for your replies
Ant
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Old April 1st, 2019, 09:37 AM   #2
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I have nothing to add other than extreme jealousy lol
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Old April 1st, 2019, 10:28 AM   #3
Ducati999
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Originally Posted by sharky nrk View Post
I have nothing to add other than extreme jealousy lol
Come to the track sometime, I have been know to let people try my bikes. A few people on here have ridden my Ducati's
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Old April 2nd, 2019, 10:01 PM   #4
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I had RZ350 for while at university. It was such fun bike, practically rip your arms off after 9K-rpms when powerband kicked in. Awesome power-to-weight ratio and it handled like magic in mountains.

NSR250 more refined and civilised. Better suspension with more adjustment options. Avoid later years wih crippled engine due to gentlemen's agreement between manufacturers. This was due to changing ignition maps with different smart-card. Not sure how easy it is to find an earlier smart-card and cloning it.

There's also Aprilia RS250, but haven't had any experience with that one.
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Old April 3rd, 2019, 06:39 AM   #5
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I'm a Kawasaki triples guy, but the Yamaha twins are great bikes too. If you're set on a 250, there are certainly faster bikes than the Kawasaki 250 triple (S1). It was an underbored 350 that was built for the European (and possibly other) market when they had the tiered licensing.

Other more esoteric 250 2-strokes like Danno mentioned can be scary-fast, but that stuff gets expensive.

I agree about the RZ350 being a fun bike, and they're still excellent street bikes. I got to ride a friend's RZ at Deals Gap a couple years ago and got a nice profile photo out of it.
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Old April 3rd, 2019, 09:45 PM   #6
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A new guy on the triples board just posted this:

http://www.kawi2strokes.com/forum/vi...0375431#unread
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Old April 4th, 2019, 02:30 AM   #7
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Then there's this option.

Link to original page on YouTube.

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Old April 4th, 2019, 06:21 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DannoXYZ View Post
Then there's this option.
I was at that meet. It's the annual 2-stroke meet at Deals Gap. In case anyone is interested, it's the whole week that ends on Mother's Day this year. Nick may even bring that hybrid Ninja again if he didn't sell it.
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Old April 4th, 2019, 02:07 PM   #9
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One thing to consider in getting smoker is parts availability due to age and liquidity of market. Bikes like NSRs and RGVs were popular in Japan in '90s, but supply of replacement and maintenance parts has dwindled over the decades. Even if you're able to do maintenance yourself, where are you going to find replacement barrels and rings? My brother has to wait month to get parts for his VFR400RR to be shipped from Japan, and that was more popular bike than smokers.

I recommending sourcing and pricing out maintenance parts for next 10-yrs along with purchase price of bike. The most popular and most-supported 2-stroke engine currently is Banshee engine based upon old RD/RZ350 engine. Plentiful number of aftermarket vendors for maintenance and upgrade parts. You can even build a complete engine from scratch using aftermarket parts.
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Old April 4th, 2019, 02:22 PM   #10
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If I'm not mistaken, the Aprilia RS250 uses a Suzuki engine similar to the RGV, so there may be more parts available for that engine than the others.

How'd you like to get parts for this?



A couple more I ran across recently at Road America -



^ My first street bike was one just like this.





My buddy's Bultaco Metralla, my Derbi GPR, and the Bimota V Due at a large local cycle gathering last year.

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Old April 7th, 2019, 01:46 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DannoXYZ View Post
One thing to consider in getting smoker is parts availability due to age and liquidity of market. Bikes like NSRs and RGVs were popular in Japan in '90s, but supply of replacement and maintenance parts has dwindled over the decades. Even if you're able to do maintenance yourself, where are you going to find replacement barrels and rings? My brother has to wait month to get parts for his VFR400RR to be shipped from Japan, and that was more popular bike than smokers.

I recommending sourcing and pricing out maintenance parts for next 10-yrs along with purchase price of bike. The most popular and most-supported 2-stroke engine currently is Banshee engine based upon old RD/RZ350 engine. Plentiful number of aftermarket vendors for maintenance and upgrade parts. You can even build a complete engine from scratch using aftermarket parts.
The primary reason for my renewed interest in a 2 stroke street bike is the reacent article in Cycle World highlighting a new company in New Jersey that are importing all the 90's "Dream Bikes' that were banned by the EPA. They will find you thw bike you want, service it and even unlock the motor/derestrict and even get 17" rims, Ohlins and other goodies. They also have a direct line (their words) to all the necessary parts to keep them running for many years. Since I also own 2 other bikes and have little time after life and wife, the bike wont be racking up 20,000 miles a season. According to the article anyone should be able to get a well cared for and decent running blast from the past all set for registration for about the cost of a new 600 cc. I have about 9,500 budgeted for the next ride, just not sure when I will pull the trigger as we are about to buy a new house (hopefully with a bigger garage) but I will update everyone with the "process" and cost once I start the hunt for my NSR.

I am really leaning toward the Honda because ot is the smallest physically and I hope once I get it home my wife will fall in love with it and I can get another - possibly a TZ250R. I will get to try out the Honda and decide if it is right for my fat ass or I can opt for the Suzuki as it is bigger and has more power stock.
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Old April 7th, 2019, 09:21 PM   #12
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Don't know if you remember company in '80s that did same thing. Didn't end very well...
But.. enjoy it to max while you can!
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Old April 8th, 2019, 08:23 AM   #13
Ducati999
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DannoXYZ View Post
Don't know if you remember company in '80s that did same thing. Didn't end very well...
But.. enjoy it to max while you can!
@DannoXYZ,
I dont claim to be an expert or even know that what they claim is true. The Cycle World article stated that because the bikes are now over 20 years old that they can be legally imported. I have not yet begun to look into this to see what the actual deal comes down to, but I am going to find out. I have wanted a TZ or NSR since I was young and did not have the $$$. I settled for a Yamaha FZ 750 fully clapped out. Now I have the budget and I will see if I can make one appear. I hope that what they printed is true as it would make it possible for an average guy like me to have a GP replica bike that has been nearly unobtainable till now. I dont know if I will ever actuall have the bike I want but I am going to try. I still have my 2 other bikes so there is nothing to lose looking into what is available.
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Old April 10th, 2019, 08:36 AM   #14
Ducati999
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Thanks for the info so far, but I am still looking for anyone who may have ridden a couple of these bikes to let me know what they think. There may not be many people that have even seen these bikes in person, never mind have ridden more than one, in America but maybe in Europe or Asia? We have begun house hunting already but not much of what we want out there. Hope to have an update soon

Ant
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Old April 12th, 2019, 07:07 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ducati999 View Post
Hello everyone,
I have just about completed my latest project, which I will make another thread for with pics, and my job just gave me a fat raise. This leaves me with extra $ in the "Bike" budget and since I have 2 V twins, it would be smart to stick with the same engine layout for the next purchase. Some of you know how incredible my little wife is and she has just authorized me to purchase a 250 2 stroke! My limited knowledge of these bikes has led me to desire an NSR250 Honda. What I would ask of the vast Ninjette community would be: #1 What year NSR, #2 Would Yamaha, Suzuki, Kawasaki be better and why, #3 What else am I missing? My plan is to register and use it on the street mostly but there is no way I will not bring it out onto the track also. I am over 200LBS so I know that I will need to lose weight to fully appreciate what they have to offer and I know they are smaller than the Ninja 250 but I have 2 other bikes so its not going to be my only ride. I have rebuilt many smokers, anything from dirtbike singles, Yamaha 2 cyl and even a Kawai Water Buffalo triple so maint is not an issue.

I now have a nice version of my original dream bike-Ducati 916-My 999 and next will be the final bike I have lusted after the 250 Twin street bike. I appreciate any feed back anyone may have on these bikes as I have only read about them and looked at a few in real life but never owned/rode one. I have the info for the company in NJ that imports them from Japan but I want as much info as possible before I call and put them on the hunt for my new toy.

Thank you for your replies
Ant
I would give serious thought to a Yamaha 350/400 but they are sort of "pricey" these days. Great, durable little bikes that really scream Hit-up Ducatiman here for advise on Dukes.

Bill
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Old April 29th, 2019, 09:44 AM   #16
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I would give serious thought to a Yamaha 350/400 but they are sort of "pricey" these days. Great, durable little bikes that really scream Hit-up Ducatiman here for advise on Dukes.

Bill
I am sure @ducatiman is very knowledgeable on everything Ducati but I also have a deep well of knowledge about Ducati's. I have rebuilt motors, adjusted valves and just recently completed a ground up restoration of a 748 inc upgrading the motor to a 916.

When it comes to the RZ350/400, I like them and even considered a mint Kenney Robberts Yellow and black RZ350 race replica @$9999. What I really want is one of the unobtainium NSR/TZR/RGV V-twin 250 2 stroke GP replicas that I lusted after in my younger years. I have been planning on transplanting a 250 dirt bike 2 stroke into a Ninja 250 for some time but now I want the real thing. I hope things work out so I can get it this year but I may have to wait till next spring to begin the hunt for one.
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Old May 1st, 2019, 12:06 PM   #17
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Old May 1st, 2019, 12:20 PM   #18
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My advice to most smokers is quit now, and to non smokers never start lol
Once you inhale the evil smoke and hear the ring-ding-ding you are hooked...
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Old May 1st, 2019, 12:42 PM   #19
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Once you inhale the evil smoke and hear the ring-ding-ding you are hooked...
I agree, I love two cycle engines. I'm right now having an affair with a 1952 Mercury 10 H.P. outboard motor. And, I just rebuilt two Johnson 3 H.P. motors.

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Old May 9th, 2019, 08:26 AM   #20
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Glad to see people still interested in smokers. They were my mainstay back when I began riding and later when I raced. A YSR or NSR50, 80, or 125 will teach you a ton on the track. My third bike was a hopped-up RD-350. It was stolen and I still miss it.

If it was in the budget, I'd be looking for an RZ-350. It was the pinnacle of what's been offered here in the US as far as two-strokes go. Disable the oil injection pump and premix the fuel and you're good to go!

Ride on,

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