CBR250R vs The British Climate - Honda CBR250R Forum : Honda CBR 250 Forums
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post #1 of 31 Old 02-26-2017, 07:42 AM Thread Starter
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CBR250R vs The British Climate

My bike's six years old now and for at least the three years I've owned it it's lived outside, usually under a cover in a lean-to in my front garden. Thanks to our mild but frequently damp climate here in the south of England it looks like I've got a bit of work to do:

The small heat shield can be powder coated at a local shop for a few pounds. I had the large one done when I first got the bike and it's still spotless.



The chain will be replaced. At 6000 miles it's hardly worn but stiff links are starting to appear where the rust has got past the o-rings. I put a squirt of wax lube on the rollers before every ride so the sprockets are still good. Paint is flaking from the sprocket carrier so that may get powder coated too and also the swing arm end caps.



The forks are the biggest concern. In addition to the mess you can see in the photo there are a couple of small chips low enough to start shredding the seals before too long. Option one is to send them to Philpots for grinding and hard chroming. That'll cost the thick end of 300 and they're currently quoting a six week turn round. Not a serious problem as I don't rely on the bike for anything and if I really want to ride I could probably pick up a cheap alternative and resell it later or pester and bribe a couple of people I know for a loan bike.
Option two would be new standard fork tubes and fit some gaiters, which might be a bit cheaper and quicker.

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post #2 of 31 Old 02-26-2017, 10:51 AM
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I'm an advocate of cheaper and quicker. But, that is a personal thing.

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post #3 of 31 Old 02-26-2017, 01:18 PM Thread Starter
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Update: I've just had an offer of 120 accepted for a set of 300R forks on Ebay.

They look the same and the seller assures me they're in good condition so hopefully that's the answer.

EDIT: I'm also going to be shopping for a set of gaiters for the new forks.

Last edited by Keith; 02-26-2017 at 01:30 PM.
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post #4 of 31 Old 02-26-2017, 04:19 PM
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That certainly is a nasty case of rust & corrosion on your bike. Is that typical of most motorcycles in the UK?

My 2012 250R is now 5 years old with almost 3 times the mileage your bike has, and it's still looking as clean as the day I took delivery, without a speck of rust anywhere. It does live in a relatively dry climate and is always garaged when I'm not riding it, so that obviously makes a huge difference over time...


BTW, when you get your new chain you can easily avoid that ugly rust on the side plates by spraying the entire chain with Bel-Ray Super Clean chain lube, which dries quickly, doesn't remain sticky and has a light gray color which makes it easy to see that the entire chain is covered.
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post #5 of 31 Old 02-26-2017, 06:41 PM
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Nice looking bike, Mike.
My 2011 CBR250R is also in near showroom condition after replacing a few cheap parts that have been scratched over the years last fall.
Never a speck of rust even though it's gone through several winters now in an unheated garage.
I may have to get new tires this year only because of age, not wear.
Easily the most trouble-free (and maintenence-free) bike I've ever owned.
Those pics of what that UK bike's been through gives me the willies.
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post #6 of 31 Old 02-27-2017, 04:35 AM Thread Starter
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Having a dry garage to keep my bike in would help, I'm sure. But I haven't got one. I don't ride in rain very much but I probably could have done a bit more with anti-corrosion products. Over here it's not unusual to see bikes of 5 plus years looking in a bit of a sorry state, particularly the Chinese 125s that have been selling well to younger riders. Equally, there are an awful lot of bigger bikes that do have the luxury of heated garages and are only ridden on sunny days so do still look as good as Mike's and TrueFaith's. Other than the highlighted areas my bike cleans up pretty well.

In the area I live in I'd guess that garage ownership is maybe 50%. A lot of new builds are without because of the high cost of building land and a high proportion of the existing housing stock is pre-1940 when car ownership was more of a luxury.
To give you an idea of how things are locally. Our house without a garage is valued at about 9 times the national average annual wage. How does that compare with you guys? Thankfully we bought it twenty years ago before the prices rocketed. It would be cheaper to buy a new bike each year than to upgrade to a house with a garage and even if we did I think my wife would have first shout at it for keeping her (classic?) '98 Toyota MR2 in.

The worst bike I ever owned for corrosion was a Suzuki SV650 I bought new in '99. After just 8 months it had much furry alloy, paint flaking from the forks and engine casings, sticking gear lever and brake calipers, rust in the tank seams. At the time I knew Suzukis didn't have a great reputation for their finish but this was far worse than the 600 Bandit I'd owned for two and a half years before.

Last edited by Keith; 02-27-2017 at 04:45 AM.
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post #7 of 31 Old 02-27-2017, 08:42 PM
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my apartment has zero access, so cbr250r
[now cbr300r] was parked across the road
uncovered on a street taking direct air flow
from the pacific ocean, 10min walk away..

with just basic wash/wax and only occasional
good going over, plus chain maintenance,
havnt seen chain rust or bike cancer..

only thing worth mentioning there
being a shot of wd40 into steering lock
[300's full cover seems to help there]
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post #8 of 31 Old 02-27-2017, 10:14 PM
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My bike is stored in a relatively inexpensive, unheated, metal garden shed where it sits for at least 4 months of the year during winter. It's completely out of the elements except the cold. I also rarely, if ever, ride in the rain.
The reason I don't ride in the rain is that I no longer have to.
I used to commute to work every day for years when I lived closer to the city and a lot of that was in the rain. While it wasn't that much of a bother (I had a GREAT TourMaster one-piece rain suit), the wet and especially the road grime definitely had an adverse effect on my bike's finishes and components. Just keeping it clean and free of rust was a full-time job. The really fine grit that you pick up on a wet road gets into everything, not just your chain and hubs. God, I hated having to clean that stuff off the bike all the time.
Is there any way you could erect a small shed big enough to fit your bike? Perhaps custom build one just big enough to fit your bike and a little gear next to your house? You're never going to keep the bike from getting wet with just a cover or using a plastic or fabric lean-to. I also think that having the bike enclosed in even the simplest of structures might cut down on some of the condensation caused by sudden temperature changes and help stave off some of the humidity a bit.
At one point I had a Yamaha that I bought new and really loved. It spent it's first year garaged, but I had to move to a new place where the only option was parking it outside on the street under a cover. I decided I couldn't treat such a beautiful bike like that and sold it just before I had to move. While I've regretted selling it ever since, I know having to watch it rust away under that cover would have been a far more excruciating for me.
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post #9 of 31 Old 02-28-2017, 04:51 AM
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I live in the UK and the bike lives outside, while I agree with the salt deposits on the aluminium parts, the fork legs rusting are just neglect of basic cleaning and the rusty chain is a lack or regular lubrication in the wet months.


You can buy packs of 3 dish washing brushes for a 1, these are great for scrubbing the salt and grime off the wheels, sprockets and lower parts like the foot pegs, hangers etc.


A bucket of warm soapy water and 10 minutes very week is no hardship compared with replacing expensive parts through corrosion.
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post #10 of 31 Old 02-28-2017, 01:17 PM Thread Starter
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Harsh words Lemmy. But, yes I probably could have done more but due to work and family commitments (and a bit of a cycling habit) I can go whole weeks in the winter months without seeing the bike in daylight. I have now got some gaiters on order for the new forks and intend to take up Mike's suggestion of the Bel Ray chain lube. Not having gaps of up to three weeks between rides might have helped too!
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