Buying a KDX... one piece at a time

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Buying a KDX... one piece at a time

Postby Thedude1973 » 11:08 pm Jan 01 2013

I have found a few KDX's in my general area for what seems like very reasonable prices. Problem is, I don't have access to that kind of fundage currently, and my income supporting a family of 4.. Well, probably won't ever have a spare $1500 to get another dirt bike. But I can generally scrape a few bills together every now and then.

So my most recent crazy idea is to start buying my KDX from online sources like ebay and craigslist, but I'd do it incrementally. I think by the time it's complete I will have ended up spending at least $3000, but the cost won't hit all at once. More importantly, I'd be building the bike exactly as I'd like to ride it (powder coat the frame, KX forks, Ron Black mods etc). I'm 39, and this will very likely be my last trail bike. If I could build a super nice KDX 200, and keep it trail worthy for as many years as my body lasts.

I'm highly mechanically minded, and have built engines in 70's model automobiles, but haven't done a lot of wrenching on a motorcycle. It will be a learning experience and I'm sure I'll break parts (on the bike and on myself) and have to buy some items twice because of mistakes. But I live in the mountains of Colorado, and have the rest of the winter to begin this project. If it's not done by mid June, I can always work through another winter.

My primary question is, am I completely out of line with this idea? Or, could I end up with a really nice machine to enjoy for the next decade or so? I know it's not the smartest way to get the exact KDX I wanna ride, but I really miss riding every week and this may be my only and last hope to get back on the trails..

Either way, this site is amazing, and convinced me on a KDX almost purely because of the super friendly/helpful users here and their devotion to this bike.

So thanks for a great forum regardless of how I end up on a green machine.

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Re: Buying a KDX... one piece at a time

Postby KDXJAKE » 12:16 am Jan 02 2013

IM KINDA DOING THE SAME THING RIGHT NOW, GOT A 1999 220 JUNKER FOR 500 BUCKS. SO FAR IM UP TO ABOUT 2000-2500 TOTAL.........ALMOST DONE.
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Re: Buying a KDX... one piece at a time

Postby KDXJAKE » 12:17 am Jan 02 2013

THIS PLACE HAS BEEN A HUGE HELP WITH THE PROCESS ALSO. :)
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Re: Buying a KDX... one piece at a time

Postby Thedude1973 » 12:24 am Jan 02 2013

KDXJAKE wrote:IM KINDA DOING THE SAME THING RIGHT NOW, GOT A 1999 220 JUNKER FOR 500 BUCKS. SO FAR IM UP TO ABOUT 2000-2500 TOTAL.........ALMOST DONE.



Awesome man! Do you have a thread on your bike yet? Yes, this place is why I'm so anxious to own a KDX.

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Buying a KDX... one piece at a time

Postby hbgod » 12:54 am Jan 02 2013

i have a thread here of my 86 kdx 200 and im figuring about $1000 to do it. :) got the bike for free but doing a frame up rebuild. and it didnt come with the correct carb so i might buy a new one.. but rebuilding the whole motor, top and bottom end replacing all bearings and gaskets. things gonna be mint when im done :)
heres the link if you wanna check it out :)
viewtopic.php?f=103&t=11541
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Re: Buying a KDX... one piece at a time

Postby Thedude1973 » 04:10 am Jan 02 2013

hbgod wrote:i have a thread here of my 86 kdx 200 and im figuring about $1000 to do it. :) got the bike for free but doing a frame up rebuild. and it didnt come with the correct carb so i might buy a new one.. but rebuilding the whole motor, top and bottom end replacing all bearings and gaskets. things gonna be mint when im done :)
heres the link if you wanna check it out :)
viewtopic.php?f=103&t=11541


Following your thread for sure, thank you.




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Re: Buying a KDX... one piece at a time

Postby Jason » 11:18 am Jan 02 2013

Crazy in general, no. Crazy, financially, yes. :grin:

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Thank you, Julien D for all your hard work!
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Buying a KDX... one piece at a time

Postby rbates9 » 11:47 am Jan 02 2013

You might want to start with a cheap complete bike even if it needs just about everything. Then you will at least have all the parts to start with. If you do go the one piece at a time way then I would try to buy as big a piece of parts as you can at a time. Like a complete engine, not all of the pieces of an engine and try to assemble.

One other thing to keep in mind is that people that part out bikes tend to want more money for a few of the main parts then a blown up bike would cost.

It will be interesting to see how this goes. :pop:
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Buying a KDX... one piece at a time

Postby scheckaet » 01:13 pm Jan 02 2013

I'd say save up and get a complete bike (even a basket case), the reason: you will spend a LOT of $ in shipping if you try to buy a complete bike one piece at a time.
Just for the frame, you'll have to pay just as much in shipping...
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Buying a KDX... one piece at a time

Postby GKBO » 07:02 pm Jan 02 2013

I'm starting with a mostly complete bike to Like hbgod it's a 86.It will need lots of parts to get it running but I at least have a good frame to build on.Thread's here viewtopic.php?f=119&t=13295
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Re: Buying a KDX... one piece at a time

Postby KDXJAKE » 08:56 pm Jan 02 2013

I have a few pics of my build so far.. I guess I should put them up. ;) I like fixin almost as much as riding.
I'm new here but have been workin on bikes since I was a little turd. But I love a challenge and a broken bike. :/
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Re: Buying a KDX... one piece at a time

Postby Thedude1973 » 09:57 pm Jan 02 2013

Well.. Im definitely more confused than I was last night.

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Re: Buying a KDX... one piece at a time

Postby Thedude1973 » 11:07 pm Jan 02 2013

http://denver.craigslist.org/mcy/3420686521.html


Ok what do I lose by buying an 89 vs. a 97 or newer? I am just about as unsure as I could be.
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Re: Buying a KDX... one piece at a time

Postby Julien D » 11:08 pm Jan 02 2013

There was a build thread or blog that I saw somewhere where someone did just that. Bought every single piece, starting with a frame. It is do-able. 3,000 may be optimistic, depending on how much you are buying new and how much you are sourcing used, but I believe it could be done and it would be a fun long-term project.

There is something to be said for finding at least MOST of a bike to start with, but if it's not in the cards, so be it?
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Re: Buying a KDX... one piece at a time

Postby rbates9 » 11:16 pm Jan 02 2013

Thedude1973 wrote:Well.. Im definitely more confused than I was last night.

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If I was having thoughts of bringing home a KDX in my lunch box I would search craigs list and see what you can find for the cheapest KDX you can find. Dead or alive. I would go with a liquid cooled and more likely an H in the search. I say H because you say this could be your last bike so the parts availability will be better down the road for a H then an E. Then I would go on EBAY and start looking for what the parts of a bike go for. Get ideas of what everything will cost you. The prices will go up and down but you can get an idea. If you plan on waiting for a great deal on parts then you will be building you grandkids first bike and not your next bike.

I would guess you will have at least $1000 tied up in a rolling chassis by the time you piece it together, but I could be wrong.

Frame $100?
Swing arm and linkage $200?
Fork set up $200?
Wheels $200?
Brakes $200?
Misc hardware $100?
Shock $100?

Then you will still need to find an engine, radiators, plastic, carb, air box, bars, controls, brackets, exhaust, electrical, and on and on.

If you can save up for a bit you could probably find a running H for about $1000 or less. Then as you ride it you can toss a few bucks at it as you can.

I would love to see a "one piece at a time build" I think it would be a great read. It would as you said be the bike that you wanted, but pricey and time consuming.
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Re: Buying a KDX... one piece at a time

Postby rbates9 » 11:26 pm Jan 02 2013

Thedude1973 wrote:http://denver.craigslist.org/mcy/3420686521.html


Ok what do I lose by buying an 89 vs. a 97 or newer? I am just about as unsure as I could be.


http://denver.craigslist.org/mcy/3477456688.html This one even says project in the title! They might take $200.

The biggest difference between an H and an E would be long term parts availability. Even an H is starting to get phased out.

As for riding the bike, it comes down to preference.

And an "E" would be 89-94, an "H" is 95 up.
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Re: Buying a KDX... one piece at a time

Postby Thedude1973 » 03:48 am Jan 03 2013

Would an e engine fit into an h frame?
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Buying a KDX... one piece at a time

Postby dfeckel » 04:17 pm Jan 03 2013

Yes, it would. However, the H has a better powervalve setup. The E KIPS tend to break too often.
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Re: Buying a KDX... one piece at a time

Postby Thedude1973 » 05:53 pm Jan 03 2013

dfeckel wrote:Yes, it would. However, the H has a better powervalve setup. The E KIPS tend to break too often.



Im sorry, I asked the question backwards. What I was thinking, could I put a newer h motor into say an 89-90 e rolling chassis?
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Buying a KDX... one piece at a time

Postby JoKDX220r » 06:20 pm Jan 03 2013

Have you think about building an hybrid instead ?
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