“Beaten into the ground” certainly is a strong statement.
Certainly fair to say that any bike used to learn on is going to have a rough life. In mountain biking we say mountain biking isn’t hard on bikes, learning to mountain bike is hard on bikes. And that certainly seems true of motorcycles as well.
Would a bigger bike fair any better? If so, why?
The 250s do have the advantage of being (for the most part) very simple and reliable machines. When stuff breaks, they aren’t nearly as hard to fix as some.
Please note that the bike in question here is more than 20 years old now. Any bike that has lasted 20 years is doing pretty well imo.
My mom’s 250 never seemed to last with an owner more than a year – and it was a 1983. Think of how many people got introduced to biking on that poor abused little bike. She did her share of abuse and now it is off in the hands of another new rider.
I’m with Shannon on checking both the choke (since it needs to be turned down as the bikes warms up) and the idle set screw. The idle speed has to be set when the engine is at full operating temperature. If it is set when the bike is cold, it’ll over rev the engine as the bike warms up.
And yes, gear or working bike? Gear. Yo can’t kill yourself with all your gear and no working bike. The reverse is not the case.
“The two seconds between ‘Oh S**!’ and the crash isn’t a lot of practice time.”