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Old 02-24-2021, 03:56 PM   #1
Frame Maker
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86-87 Ninja 250R, looking for other owners

I'm not sure if this is the right place to ask or if this 34 year old bike is considered vintage(?), but thought I'd start here.

I have a 1987 Ninja 250R. It has been in storage for about 8 years and I'm thinking about getting it semi-restored and running again. It would be helpful to make contact with other owners of this specific model.

Any suggestions? Here on BARF or other specific forums?

(photo for reference, not my actual bike)

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Old 02-25-2021, 08:34 AM   #2
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omg those are my favorite generation ninjette,

the one that got away, I once saw a classified ad for that same gen frame / bodywork, that someone had stuffed a rotax 650 single into
that sounded to me like a good time
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Old 02-25-2021, 08:52 AM   #3
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Great little bikes. My friend used to have one. It had the bad intake valves that sank into the seats. It got to where he couldn't get it started. Had his son tow him behind the car. Backfired into the airbox and lit on fire. Ahh good times...

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Old 02-25-2021, 08:53 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GPzPop View Post
omg those are my favorite generation ninjette,
+1 ... just love the styling of the first-Gen Ninja 250.

have not seen one in the wild in years ...

the Antique Motorcycle Club of America considers bikes older than 35 years to qualify for their club so I’d say the Ninjette counts as vintage here.

good luck with your project and search for info, Frame Maker!

imagine there was a robust e-mail list for that model at one time ...?
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Old 02-25-2021, 01:13 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GPzPop View Post
omg those are my favorite generation ninjette,

the one that got away, I once saw a classified ad for that same gen frame / bodywork, that someone had stuffed a rotax 650 single into
that sounded to me like a good time
STOP! Now you went and got me thinking about what other engines I could stuff into it... like maybe an RZ350... or better yet, I happen to have a spare RZ250 (yes, two-50). Then it would still be a "250" but 2-stroke. Oh my mind reels.

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Originally Posted by SFMCjohn View Post
+1 ... just love the styling of the first-Gen Ninja 250.

have not seen one in the wild in years ...

the Antique Motorcycle Club of America considers bikes older than 35 years to qualify for their club so Iíd say the Ninjette counts as vintage here.

good luck with your project and search for info, Frame Maker!

imagine there was a robust e-mail list for that model at one time ...?
Yep, the styling is exactly why I got it! Interesting about the 35 year designation for "vintage"
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Old 02-25-2021, 01:18 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Frame Maker View Post
STOP! Now you went and got me thinking about what other engines I could stuff into it... like maybe an RZ350... or better yet, I happen to have a spare RZ250 (yes, two-50). Then it would still be a "250" but 2-stroke. Oh my mind reels.


please leave that poor survivor stock ...








Rotax, I say!
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Old 03-01-2021, 11:16 AM   #7
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i think a ktm 550 2 stroke would fit nicely....
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Old 03-18-2021, 08:57 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by SFMCjohn View Post
+1 ... just love the styling of the first-Gen Ninja 250.

have not seen one in the wild in years ...

the Antique Motorcycle Club of America considers bikes older than 35 years to qualify for their club so Iíd say the Ninjette counts as vintage here.

good luck with your project and search for info, Frame Maker!

imagine there was a robust e-mail list for that model at one time ...?
Yes, I was on that email list hahaha sold my 250 a couple years back to someone here on Barf. Father/Son team had plans to track it I believe
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Old 03-19-2021, 07:14 AM   #9
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I picked one up as bike-in-boxes last year. Came with 2 sets bodywork.







The analogue ignition-system sucks with very bad 2D RPM-only mapping. Causes lazy sluggish low-end as ignition-advance values are set for WOT. Gonna Microsquirt it next for proper 3D load-based mapping.

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Old 03-19-2021, 11:28 AM   #10
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Nice! I've always loved the first gen bikes!
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Old 03-19-2021, 08:45 PM   #11
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BTW, you can fit all 3-generations of engines to this bike:

- '86-87 1st-gen
- '88-07 pre-gen
- '08-12 new-gen

Not sure where weight got added, this 1st-gen weighs ~335 lbs with successive generation gaining +20lbs each time.

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Old 03-20-2021, 02:45 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DannoXYZ View Post
I picked one up as bike-in-boxes last year. Came with 2 sets bodywork.

The analogue ignition-system sucks with very bad 2D RPM-only mapping. Causes lazy sluggish low-end as ignition-advance values are set for WOT. Gonna Microsquirt it next for proper 3D load-based mapping.
Can later model ignitions be adapted? Just curious.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DannoXYZ View Post
BTW, you can fit all 3-generations of engines to this bike:

- '86-87 1st-gen
- '88-07 pre-gen
- '08-12 new-gen
This is very good to know. I have a newer engine that I may or may not try to install.
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Old 03-22-2021, 06:27 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Frame Maker View Post
Can later model ignitions be adapted? Just curious.
yes, you'll need these matching components from newer bike:

- flywheel
- pick-up coils
- harness
- TCI box
- if 1995+, also ignition-switch for 100-ohm resistor
- kill-switch & start-button can be re-used, but may need re-pinning depending upon generation


Nice thing about '86-87 is they had metal slides in carbs instead of plastic like later bikes.

Last edited by DannoXYZ; 03-22-2021 at 06:30 PM..
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