I have completly come 180 on my 2006 WR450 I love this bike!

I aquired this bike a while back in a trade that I was not looking for.  I have 2 other dirt bikes and as far I was concerned my stable was full.  I had a beet up rock crawler Jeep Cherokee that was not modified enough to be worth anything and too far from stock to be comfortable to drive.  Honestly it was a trail rig project that never took off.  No A/C in an area that gets to 110 regularly in the summer time killed that ride.  I had it for sale for a while and was asking 3000 but honeslty would have taken 1500.  It looked cool but was very rough.  A guy asked if I would trade the 2006 WR450 for it and basically I decided that the bike was worth more than the Jeep.  So the trade was made. 


I planned to sell the bike but figured I would give a few rides first.  It had a badly worn out rear tire but was otherwise in decent condition.  I took it out and the bald rear tire coupled with the heavy weight and power characteristics of this bike compared to my other bikes did not have me very happy.  I saw enough though to figure it would make a good dualsport if I could some how get the magic license plate.  That is still a plan at this point.  But I decided to keep it. 


Well I had taken out a few times but not any real long rides or serious rides.  I had taken it up a hill a few times but was not all that impressed.  It seemed like it would either spin the rear tire uncontrolably or would run out of RPMs on the top end.  Also did I mention it felt heavy.  I cant tell you how many times I stopped to check to see if the rear tire was flat because the rear end was swinging around or just seemed to never hold a line in a turn or under power. 


The first good ride for the bike came Presidents weekend and this was a very short ride.  The family and I went out to Spangler Hills near Ridgecrest for a quick weekend of camping.  We towed our Jeep Wrangler out there.  (the real replacement for the old Cherokee) and on a whim I through the WR in the back of the truck.  All this 2 days after having kidney stone surgery.  We had a great weekend doing mostly GeoCashing in the Jeep.  Before we started to pack up and go home, I mentioned that I wasnted to the bike out for a put around.  I figured the 450 off road 4 stroke would be better suited for the wide open desert than my KX250 or my CRF250X.  Both have made trips out there and were blast but I was about 50 percent phisically with the wind blowing about 50 mph and just wanted something that I didnt have to work hard to ride.  So I took it out.  The bike still on its bald rear tire ran flawlessly.  I was happy with the bike for the first time.  I brought it home and took it out a few more times but the lack of traction was a big issue. 


Well this weekend I finally could afford a new rear tire.  The front tire is an 80 100 21 Maxxis Desert IT.  I did some research and I wanted Maxxis Desert IT for the rear but in the 120 100 18 size as apposed to the 110 100 that was on the bike.  The shop did not have the desert IT so I settled for a regular IT.  I know this is a good tire also and probably works better actually The Desert IT is stiffer and may possibly last longer over all but the IT will be good as well. 


I took it for a ride today and after finally getting some much needed rain..  All I can say is WOW!!  With the new tire, I no longer spun the rear tire.  I now lifted the front wheel or rocketed forward.  Sometimes both.  I went to some hill climbs that were difficult to impossible and shot up them like they were a launch pad.  Bike held lines and tracked perfect.  Couldnt be happier.  Cant wait for the next ride on this bike.  Anyway  Just felt like sharing.

Amazing what a new rear tire can do lol

What a great post thanks for sharing.

How's the front tire? That can make a night and day difference in the handling. I just went to a Bridgestone 403/404 combo and it is excellent, even on hard pack and rocks. The stock D739 (which is what was still on my bike) doesn't really even compare with the front end traction you can get from a better tire.

1500$ is a steal on that bike even with a bald tire. Smart move.

in time, you may reconsider the 110/100/18 maxxis desert IT. I've had both on my 06wr, and prefer the turn in on the narrower tire. Still plenty of traction.

The type of riding I seem to do tends to like a lot of rear tire.  The ground here can get very loose and there are long sandy hill climbs.  I do ride single track but not super tight woods stuff.  If i was riding that , then I think the smaller tire would have an advantage.  My thing is I went from a damn near bald 110 100 18 to a band new sharp edged 120 100 18.  One time I tried to lean the bike over and pivot around my foot to turn around by spinning the rear wheel.  All i would up doing was standing the bike on the rear tire turning around.

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