09 crf 450 rear wheel position

Hey fellow readers, I've recently purchased an 09 model 450 and this diet has been great at giving me info on fixing the bugs with the 09 model. One thing I'm finding hard to find info on is about the advantages/ disadvantages of having the rear wheel set closer to the engine ( the adjuster is set to the second last notice on the swing arm towards the motor). This set up was how it was when I bought it but is it better to put the wheel back further to the rear or not?

It's really personal preference. Shorter wheelbase (closer to the engine) is better for tight turns but worse for high speed stability. Longer wheelbase is the opposite.

Your chain tension will dictate where your axle is placed. In other words, you can't move the rear wheel backwards if the chain will be too tight. Conversely, you should move the rear wheel back if the chain is too lose.

Edited by Eddie8v

Thanks for the input I'll try the longer chain so I can move the wheel back and decide if I prefer the handling with that setup.

Thanks for the input I'll try the longer chain so I can move the wheel back and decide if I prefer the handling with that setup.

Thanks for the input I'll try the longer chain so I can move the wheel back and decide if I prefer the handling with that setup.

You need to be able to move your rear wheel rearward 5/8" in order to install a chain that's 2 links longer than the one you have on there, now. Be sure you have 5/8" of room before wasting your time!

Leave it where it is.

Honda moved the motor about 1/2 inch forwards and extended thr swing arm about 3/4"

It's known for stinkbugging. I've had my axle rear middle and forwards. Forwards is important on an 09 need to get as much weight rear as possible.

So are really stiff fork springs a merge knuckle and 22mm offset tripple clamps.

The exception may be desert racing.

I have the fc rear link, do I need a different merge knuckle aswell?

I've herd of people running both.

But knuckle > link

Combo? Dunno?

So the knuckle lowers it better

the link screws with the progression of the linkage.

i think its said to delay the progression.

the knuckle lowers it a bit and changes the progression curve to something more favorable than the link, and more favorable than stock as well.

the knuckle and fork springs are the ticket.

short swing arm is good too,

as well as 22mm offset clamps.

ive tried all of them.

Sag settings have considerably more effect that 3/4" of wheelbase on cornering precision and turning radius.

a consequence of less sag for tighter turning is even more weight on the front of the 09.

in fact most people run excessive sag on this bike because of the front weight bias.

wheelbase can help with turning and getting weight off the front.

trust me milling .2" outa the swing arm slot and slamming that rear end forward helps..... alot..

I feel it helps you rear steer better.

And I won't say sag doesn't chang things a lot.

But axle position is a noticeable tuning tool to me.

And it gets two birds stoned at once ya know.

Back in my bmx days chainstay length made a difference there too.

Edited by englertracing

I can only find one place who sells the knuckles (merge racing.com). Is this where you purchased yours from?

Yea that's where I got it.

My linkage bearings were just roasted...

I greased them once a year and never saw a pressure washer or a river...

Damn Mobil 1 synthetic grease let it happen.

So I kinda got two birds stoned at once with the merge knuckle all new bearings come with the linkage... And now she gets frequent belray waterproof greasing.

The 09-12 bikes benefit greatly from a revalve / resrping  for your weight & riding ability.  Find a reputable suspension tuner that can help you with a good set up & the rest is really unnecessary other than a good remap.      

The 09-12 bikes benefit greatly from a revalve / resrping  for your weight & riding ability.  Find a reputable suspension tuner that can help you with a good set up & the rest is really unnecessary other than a good remap.      

+1

Yea that's where I got it.

My linkage bearings were just roasted...

I greased them once a year and never saw a pressure washer or a river...

Damn Mobil 1 synthetic grease let it happen.

So I kinda got two birds stoned at once with the merge knuckle all new bearings come with the linkage... And now she gets frequent belray waterproof greasing.

That non-EP grease is the problem. You should use a Moly EP grease in all linkage bearings because of the extremely high pressure loads on the needles. The moly(bdenum) is an ingredient that will help to prevent physical contact, and thus wear, between the needles and the inner pins and the outer races. Any 3%-5% moly grease will make sure your needles last a very long time... all traces of old grease must be removed when greasing these bearings, too. I hear most guys just pull the pins and slap some grease right over the existing grease. You need to pull all the needles out, clean out all the grease from the races and the needles. Then slap new EP grease in the races and start laying the needles back in there.

I've been using lucas oil red and tacky for about 2 years now and wow what a difference. It lasts forever. It does get a little darker after around 30-40 hours but it holds up to lots of pressure washing and mud races. The only bearing that the grease got dirty was the lower shock mount bearing if i remember correctly.

Red 'n' Tacky is a decent EP grease, but does NOT contain moly and isn't good for high point-load needle bearings / u-joints. That bottom shock bearing has the highest needle pressure of any bearing on the bike, so it destroys non-moly grease almost immediately. After more grease degradation, most colored greases exhibit the color change you're seeing. If there's 1 bearing to use moly grease on the bike, it's that bottom shock bearing. The other bearings can last a little while with non-moly EP grease.

Edited by Eddie8v

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