Thinking of getting a VTR250

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Thinking of getting a VTR250

Postby Pigsinspace » Fri Dec 25, 2015 12:12 am

Hi everyone, new to the forums and I figured I would introduce myself. My name is Dan from Portland and been riding bikes since I was 17(I'm 18 now :D). I started on a 1984 kawasaki gpz 550 that I bought off of a friend and fixed it up. Just a couple months ago I got a 2008 kawasaki zx6r and already put 5 thousand miles on it.

On my way a couple days ago, I passed my local motorcycle salvage shop and saw out front this beautiful bike. It is a 1990 Honda VTR250 with 28k miles on the clock and the plastics look like you would expect with a bike this old and that many miles. It started right up and he is asking 1100 for the bike. The only way I would get this bike though is if he can do a trade for my gpz 550 which i won't know until after new years.

I have been looking for an old cheap 250cc bike for a while that I can play around with. I really wanted a zx2r or a cbr250rr but my dreams were quickly crushed when I found out they were only a grey market import and a decent one will leave a hole in your wallet. Sure I can pick up a ninja 250 for next to nothing in good condition but what would be the fun in that. I haven't heard about the vtr 250 before seeing it and I think it is a really unique bike.

I want this bike to be a fun commuter, not saying the zx6r isn't, just having 100 hp rumbling between your legs stuck in traffic isn't all that fun and even on the highway, just unleashing it on the highway in first gear will already break any speed limit around here. And thats just no fun. I want a bike that I can trash around and not have to worry about the man coming down on me. But I also want a bike to work on. On my zx6r, you gotta unscrew a million and one things just to see the engine itself.The vtr I feel like will be much more similar to my gpz that I can take off the tank and a couple fairings and reach pretty much anything I would need to reach.

Something else that I would just like from the bike is a platform to learn how to work on a motorcycle engine. But this is where I feel like the vtr won't be able to deliver upon. With this bike being a pretty uncommon bike, aftermarket engine parts aren't going to be something I can get and it seems like just finding an engine rebuild kit pretty difficult.

So what do you guys think, will this bike deliver upon my wants as a second bike and do you think 1100 is a fair asking price for that bike. Here is a picture of it.
00r0r_lR1lpLgthcs_600x450.jpg
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Re: Thinking of getting a VTR250

Postby John Hilmer » Fri Dec 25, 2015 9:21 am

Welcome aboard Dan,

Your message is pretty well sorted for one so young, though I'm not too clear about your intentions with this one.

The '90 version is the most sought after of the three years that they were imported to us. With that in mind most of us would intend to restore it.

You mention that it starts up fine, so why are you concerned about rebuilding it? I suspect that what it would need at this point is to get the valves set properly and go through ALL of the electrical connections to clean and add dielectric grease. There will probably be other niggles to deal with as you gain experience with it. That is where the experience here will be a big help to you.

Then there will be the cleaning and fairing restoration if you decide to restore it.

These bikes are a lot of fun as you suspect, as long as you don't intend on riding the slab down to California on it or that type of thing. You'll find that it has a very wide power band which is a true pleasure.

I think the $1100 asking price is fair from such a source. In fact, if you don't take it let me know. I might have to drive up there and collect it myself.

EDIT: Many parts are available from salvage yards or E-Bay. There are a few that are difficult, but for the most part this isn't a problem.

John
Lord help me to be the man my Labrador thought I was.
It's never too late to have a happy childhood ...
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Re: Thinking of getting a VTR250

Postby spotthedogg » Fri Dec 25, 2015 4:15 pm

Yeah, buy it 8-)
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Re: Thinking of getting a VTR250

Postby Pigsinspace » Sat Dec 26, 2015 1:18 am

John Hilmer wrote:Welcome aboard Dan,

Your message is pretty well sorted for one so young, though I'm not too clear about your intentions with this one.

The '90 version is the most sought after of the three years that they were imported to us. With that in mind most of us would intend to restore it.

You mention that it starts up fine, so why are you concerned about rebuilding it? I suspect that what it would need at this point is to get the valves set properly and go through ALL of the electrical connections to clean and add dielectric grease. There will probably be other niggles to deal with as you gain experience with it. That is where the experience here will be a big help to you.

Then there will be the cleaning and fairing restoration if you decide to restore it.

These bikes are a lot of fun as you suspect, as long as you don't intend on riding the slab down to California on it or that type of thing. You'll find that it has a very wide power band which is a true pleasure.

I think the $1100 asking price is fair from such a source. In fact, if you don't take it let me know. I might have to drive up there and collect it myself.

EDIT: Many parts are available from salvage yards or E-Bay. There are a few that are difficult, but for the most part this isn't a problem.

John


Thanks for the reply, and I know, I suck at typing. I really do want this bike and eventually take the time to restore it but I am moving soon to an apartment complex with no garage where I can not possibly have 3 bikes so it all depends whether or not I can get rid of the gpz. Knowing that parts won't be to hard to find does bring a piece of mind.The reason why I would be concerned with a rebuild is because I put a lot of miles in a day where some days, I can put as much as 80 miles and being able to not end up with a crap motor that can't be fix is not a situation I would like to be in.

Mind me asking as well why the 1990 model is the one people look for? From what I can see on the internet is that the later model didn't have an inboard disc brake and the wheel is 17 inches.

I will definitely let you know if I don't get it but it won't be till after the new years when the shop owner comes back and I can talk about a trade with some money stacked on top of it.

Also, spotthedogg, I read your whole race bike project thread and it was awesome. Had lots of good information and beautiful pictures in that thread.
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Re: Thinking of getting a VTR250

Postby John Hilmer » Sat Dec 26, 2015 12:07 pm

If you proceed with this be certain to test ride it and push it hard in second gear. Some of these will pop out of second when pushed to near red line. If that happens walk away. Splitting the cases to fix this makes one in that condition nothing more than a door stop.

Getting rid of the inboard brake is a plus because it is so heavy.

The 17" wheels are a bit better but you still can't get great tires to fit as I recall.

John
Lord help me to be the man my Labrador thought I was.
It's never too late to have a happy childhood ...
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Re: Thinking of getting a VTR250

Postby Alan_in_WA » Sat Dec 26, 2015 10:55 pm

I believe this is the bike in question: http://portland.craigslist.org/clc/mcy/5366348508.html

If only I didn't already have too many....... ;)
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Re: Thinking of getting a VTR250

Postby Pigsinspace » Sat Dec 26, 2015 11:39 pm

Alan_in_WA wrote:I believe this is the bike in question: http://portland.craigslist.org/clc/mcy/5366348508.html

If only I didn't already have too many....... ;)


Perhaps I shouldn't have said Im from portland :lol:

Thanks for letting me know to be cautious about it popping out of second gear and will definitely get a test ride. I stopped in today and they said he'll be back the 29th. Ill keep y'all posted.
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Re: Thinking of getting a VTR250

Postby Pigsinspace » Tue Dec 29, 2015 3:42 pm

Ok, so I went down to the place today and after a bit of some haggling, his final offer was my GPz 550 plus $500 for the vtr. This would equate him offering me $600 for the gpz. The bike is in good condition mechanically with a solid engine and runs like a dream, but with leaky forks, rusty gas tank with bad repair jobs and all the paint from the engine block and the fairings are far from pretty.

I haven't gone through and nit picked the vtr yet to see if it will need new brakes/rotors/tires/chain/sprocket, all the little things that are easily replaceable but can add up fast. I just want to know if he is underselling my bike.

I also stopped in by my insurance agent and was quoted 5 dollars a month for liability on the vtr :o
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Re: Thinking of getting a VTR250

Postby ExTex77 » Tue Dec 29, 2015 4:08 pm

I think the prices are reasonable if the VTR doesn't need immediate infusion of parts/$.
The dealer has to cover his overhead and make a profit.

I'd do the deal.

Happy New Year & ride safely,
ExTex
1989 Honda VTR250 & 1988 Honda NT650
Wife rides a Burgman 200 scooter and I enjoy riding it also
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Re: Thinking of getting a VTR250

Postby John Hilmer » Wed Dec 30, 2015 7:44 am

I agree with Tex.

I doubt that bikes sell well up there at this time of the year, they sure don't sell well down here.

Do you think you could sell your current ride quickly for more than the $600.00 he is allowing you?

I would make sure of the basics that you intend to check and then decide how to proceed.

John
Lord help me to be the man my Labrador thought I was.
It's never too late to have a happy childhood ...
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