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Discussion Starter #1
I recently put a deposit on a 250! I just have a question though.. Ive heard over the years that running a single cylinder engine for extended periods of time (highway travel) is not good for it. I live about 2 hours from my mom and I visit her frequently and Id love to make the trip on the 250. But I also dont want to ruin it lol. Let me know if I am wrong
 

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I too would like to know if a single cylinder can be harmed by this. My idea for the bike will be 5 days a week riding to and from the train station which is 150km total. All on the highway.
 

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I cannot see the problem.... keep the maintenance up to date and any bike will be fine. Motorcycles are just machines to be used; do not worry about "harming" them.

I did thousands of kilometres touring around Europe on my CB 250 RS, a single, running at a variety of speeds, on roads ranging from autobahn to mountain passes. It was about 13 years old with over 100,000 km on the clock when it was stolen.

Here in Phuket, Thailand I have a 14 year old Honda Dream (100 cc single) which has done over 180,000 km. I had the engine overhauled for the first time at 170,000 km, and now it is as good as new again. I do not do many very short journeys on it; I use a bicycle for that.
 

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Hey, just do what I do when I travel on my CM450c twin. Don't plod along at one speed, but get on it & pass, back off & cruise, just change it up a lot. No engine designed for a large speed range like a constant one for long periods. Or better yet, find the side roads off the highway & take those.
 

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Be sure to keep the oil changed. The little motor will work hard at highway speeds and its the lifeblood of the engine. After mine is broke in i will be switching it over to full synthetic oil. And i change mine more often than the owners manual calls for. Sorry just my 2 cents as they say
 

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There shouldn't be too much worry about pounding your bike.

most motors are now desgined to endure a long period of work.I mean of honda said not to ride their bike too far, i don't know how many people would want to buy their bike in the first place.

Also that honda has designed this motor from the ground up. and uses EFI instead of carb which helps reduce wear as well, to my knowledge.
 

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Thanks guys!

Just as a consolation, i just passed 32.000 km on my small cbr125rw´09.
And most of that is on highway, so thats close to redline severel 100 kms of highway - so dont worry about that :)

(Well actually i WAS worried about it from start, but my dealer said, Honda have testet and testet their engines again and again since the year 1900 :D

Just remember to warm it carefully up first. As i always do)
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Just as a consolation, i just passed 32.000 km on my small cbr125rw´09.
And most of that is on highway, so thats close to redline severel 100 kms of highway - so dont worry about that :)

(Well actually i WAS worried about it from start, but my dealer said, Honda have testet and testet their engines again and again since the year 1900 :D

Just remember to warm it carefully up first. As i always do)
Thats good information! Thanks kim!
 

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A bit of history

It is good to see some common sense on this thread.

Years ago small singles were certainly not up to highway travel.

I rode a couple of clapped out BSA Bantams (two stroke) back in the late '60s and the '70s. Cheap and cheerful in their time, but not what you would call quality machines. They did not take long to become clapped out. Ride them too slow and the spark plug would become fouled. Ride them fast(ish) for too long and the engine would seize. They were typical of small bikes of their time.

The Honda CB and CG 125 singles, introduced in the 1970's, were good for 110 km/h and could sustain 80 km/h for long distances. On the CB the overhead camshaft bearings would wear quickly if timely oil changes were neglected. The CG could stand a bit more neglect. However ridden within their design limits, engine life came down to maintenance, not how they were used.

In the 1980's I worked up country in Thailand and was supplied with a new Yamaha 100 (two stroke) for my job. A one or two days a week I covered about 30 km of highway to an area where I would work most of the day, traveling on dirt roads, and return in the cool of the evening.

One day I finished early, and was returning during the hottest part of the day. Traveling at about 90 km/h the engine seized, which made things a little interesting; there was a large bus not far behind me. I had the clutch disengaged promptly, which allowed the rear wheel to turn again, and got on to the hard shoulder. I engaged the clutch again abruptly, which bumped the piston back into action (I would not have done that on a four stroke). It ran for a bit and then seized again. I stopped for a while, to let the engine cool down, then carried on home.

"Just like the BSA Bantam," I thought.

The engine rattled a bit after that, but served me ok for the remaining year or so that I was there. I just made sure my highway journeys were in the cooler morning and evening hours. About 12 years later I returned to visit old friends, and the Yamaha was still going, still used daily.

In the mid 80's all the motorcycle manufacturers in Thailand introduced water-cooled 125 and 150 cc two stroke machines. With better temperature control than an air cooled bike, they could be manufactured to greater tolerances, and could easily sustain highway speeds of 120 km/h or more.

The CB250RS (air-cooled single) I had was said to be good for about 145 km/h, but I spent most of my time on byways, seldom exceeding 90 km/h. On highways 110 km/h was enough sustained speed for me. Wearing an open face helmet, I get tired quite quickly going faster for any length of time.

Fast forward to the CBR250R, which I would call a middle-weight motorcycle. With water cooling and all the other benefits of modern technology, it should be able to run for long periods at moderate highway speeds without any problem. Reports suggest that it is.
 

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Fast forward to the CBR250R, which I would call a middle-weight motorcycle. With water cooling and all the other benefits of modern technology, it should be able to run for long periods at moderate highway speeds without any problem. Reports suggest that it is.
Good point made, you seem to have a lot of experience with riding smaller displacement bikes and really know the ins and outs of everything. By far which was the worst bike you have ridden?

As for the CBR250R I'm sure Honda wouldn't design a bike to doom itself, and they realized that this motor is completely new design with many new perks!
 

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The worst bike I have ridden

I guess having been riding for most of the 45 years since I first got on a motorcycle I have picked up a bit of information. Being a farm boy I am interested in machinery too, and have done a lot of my own maintenance. But I am still learning, and like to keep up with developments.

I certainly don't live in the "good old days", but at the same time I don't think all modern developments are the right way to go. None the less, I feel it is good to see ideas tried. Some work and are continued. Some do not and are forgotten. Either way we see progress. Bikes are generally much better to ride and easier to maintain these days.

Honda learned from the CB125. Despite being ok at what it could do, that quick wear cam bearing if oil changes were not done frequently (every 1,000 km) was was really a design flaw. It was not in production for long. The CG 125 remained in production for many years.

I enjoy motorcycling, but don't really see motorcycles just as a hobby. I have used motorcycles a lot on farms, and for other work, especially here in Thailand. Motorcycles out sell cars nearly three to one here; they are primarily a means of day to day transport. Because of that I favour small to mid sized singles that are economical, practical, and versatile.

That is not to say I have not enjoyed larger bikes, and I have ridden quite a few. The biggest I have owned was a Honda CB 350, a twin. Some are great at what they are designed for.

I used a mate's BMW K1200 for a couple of weeks. It was magnificent as a long distance tourer. I did 500 km in one day a couple of times, and would happily have done another 500 km. It excelled on highways. On sealed "B" roads it was ok, but on unsealed roads (which I see a lot of when I am back in NZ) it was not so great. In town it was ok too, but I did need to look around for a suitable place to park. It was fast, could reach 100 km/h in about 4 seconds without much drama. Ridden at moderate touring speeds on NZ roads it was reasonably economical, 55 - 60 mpg was easily achieved. But it is not the kind of bike that suits me for day to day use.

The worst bike I have ridden.......? That would have to be the Kawasaki 750cc Mach III, a 2 stroke triple. It had vicious acceleration, which was a great buzz. That was why another mate bought it, but he didn't keep it for long. Acceleration was about its only positive. It handled like a log of wood, and the brakes left a bit to be desired. It was uncomfortable, but you did not have to sit on it for long. At not much over 20 mpg fuel stops were frequent. Chains, tyres, and even the engine did not last for long. My mate soon got bored with a bike that was good for nothing but accelerating fast.

This post, though responding to Honda-biker, is a bit off topic, I know. Maybe it should be the start of a new thread.
 

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I certainly don't live in the "good old days", but at the same time I don't think all modern developments are the right way to go. None the less, I feel it is good to see ideas tried. Some work and are continued. Some do not and are forgotten. Either way we see progress. Bikes are generally much better to ride and easier to maintain these days.

Honda learned from the CB125. Despite being ok at what it could do, that quick wear cam bearing if oil changes were not done frequently (every 1,000 km) was was really a design flaw. It was not in production for long. The CG 125 remained in production for many years.
Great write up! even Honda back then knew what they were doing with the smaller and older bikes. I'm pretty sure this bike is more than capable of holding up with highway's and long terms runs as long as you maintain the bike!
 

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Corrections

The Kawasaki 750 triple was called the Mach IV (aka "The Widowmaker"). It came out a bit after the Mach III, which was a 500 cc two stroke triple. Both were mean machines. They set a number of records in their time, some of which I think still stand. They were easy to work on, and people did all sorts of crazy things with them. After he got bored with his Mach IV, my mate left it with his brother, who overhauled it, and sold it promptly.

On the highway the CBR250R is a far better proposition than those Kawasaki triples.

The CB125 was in production longer than I realised, maybe because it was a while ago. It was produced from the mid '70s to the mid '80s, about 11 years. The need for frequent oil changes was not a problem in a country like Thailand, where you can pop into numerous repair shops every month to have a small bike serviced and be on your way in 10 or 15 minutes.

I don't have a workshop here so that is what I do with my Honda Dream every couple of months or 2000 km. It costs 110 baht, less than $US 4.00. The new Wave 110i has a service interval of 4,000 km.

In the west it was ok if you could do your own servicing; just drain the oil when you get home, and fill it up, ready to go the next day. A bit of a hassle if you had to book your bike into a dealer every month though.

The CG125 was in production much longer, about 32 years. It was phased out in 2008. Honda certainly got something right there! I have not seen a new one in Thailand for many years, but there is a beaten up looking old one, with a sidecar, in daily use near where I live.
 

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The Kawasaki 750 triple was called the Mach IV (aka "The Widowmaker"). It came out a bit after the Mach III, which was a 500 cc two stroke triple. Both were mean machines. They set a number of records in their time, some of which I think still stand. They were easy to work on, and people did all sorts of crazy things with them. After he got bored with his Mach IV, my mate left it with his brother, who overhauled it, and sold it promptly.

On the highway the CBR250R is a far better proposition than those Kawasaki triples.

The CB125 was in production longer than I realised, maybe because it was a while ago. It was produced from the mid '70s to the mid '80s, about 11 years. The need for frequent oil changes was not a problem in a country like Thailand, where you can pop into numerous repair shops every month to have a small bike serviced and be on your way in 10 or 15 minutes.

I don't have a workshop here so that is what I do with my Honda Dream every couple of months or 2000 km. It costs 110 baht, less than $US 4.00. The new Wave 110i has a service interval of 4,000 km.

In the west it was ok if you could do your own servicing; just drain the oil when you get home, and fill it up, ready to go the next day. A bit of a hassle if you had to book your bike into a dealer every month though.

The CG125 was in production much longer, about 32 years. It was phased out in 2008. Honda certainly got something right there! I have not seen a new one in Thailand for many years, but there is a beaten up looking old one, with a sidecar, in daily use near where I live.
A dealer said to me the other day that Honda couldnt sell enough of the old cbr 250, thats why they kept away from 250 for years, now they try again :)
 

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I didn't personally realize that Honda has been building a CBR125R since 2004 and continues to offer it in a newly revised 2011 edition. It has never been available in the U.S. If you google 2011 CBR125R you will see it now has many of the same components as the new 250...in fact going down the road you would be hard pressed to know the difference in appearance..check it out. In Canada, they have a nice dark silver with orange trim and wheels which I think looks sharp....
 

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They make different versions of bikes for different markets. The previous CBR150R, which was available in Thailand and some other markets, was sold in other places in 125 cc form; usually to meet learner bike regulations, I guess. It is probably true of the current model.

I looked at a new CBR150R and a new CBR250R side by side in a shop yesterday. Superficially they look the same. At first I thought they were two versions of the same bike, differing mainly in engine size. I looked a bit closer and saw some fundamental differences. True, a lot of parts are interchangeable, but the frame is completely different.
 

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Ideally a lot of Honda parts are interchangeable even their cars.

Honda is very smart with that part by sharing many parts between, vehicles and many other things, but never would assume their bikes were the same.
 
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