This 2004 Yamaha YZ125 was a special bike. I purchased it for $400 the day before I had shoulder surgery. I knew I wouldn’t be able to touch it for months, but was excited to have a project for when I was finally able to get back in the shop. All of my bike purchases prior to this had profit as the focus. This one was different. I wanted to do my first highly detailed, high quality, nothing left untouched bike build. I planned to ride this bike rather than finish it and sell it. I was not particularly concerned about the cost, and accepted that I would not be turning a profit on this bike.
I budgeted as well as possible, and ended up spending a total of $3,627 building this bike. I rebuilt every component and replaced every bearing. This bike was a blast to ride, and once it was completed I knew I was going to continue building bikes. Everything I learned from this build motivated me to do things even better for the next bike. I ended up putting only around 15 hours on this bike before I decided it was time to put the money it was worth towards a new build. I sold the bike for $3,700, coming out with the slightest profit.
I realized at this point that these builds were more about the process than the outcome. Turning an old blown up barn find into a beautiful, reliable dirt bike is incredibly satisfying, and I craved more.
The YouTube video for this bike saw great success as well, earning over 200,000 views. At this point I realized I should start reaching out to companies for support, and began seeking sponsors for my next project.