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yz 250 Front End Woes...

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Right I know this topic has been posted many a time before.

 

I HATE the way my YZ turns and feels in rutted corners. It is awful. I have 2 of them,I have tried everything from 17mm o/s triple clamps to 20mm o/s to running the fork like 15mm up in the top clamp.

 

I also have 100mm sag and the correct spring rates.

 

The things has useless traction of front .

 

I love the bikes, but the lack of traction feel on the front really makes me want to change bikes!

 

Any ideas?

 

The yz seems a lot more sensitive to sag etc than other bikes,It Is a nightmare in downhill ruts.

 

Is this just how the yz is?

 

This will be my 5th yz 250 by the way.

 

Thanks

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Was that sarcasm? I like the way it is in a straight line, but she won't turn very well. Overall HANDLING is good. Just the front end I can never get a good feel of.

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If you havent played with the comp-rebound. You would be surprized how a few adjustments can make a world of difference. I thought 22mm offset clamps where the cats meow. Try to soffen compression and slow rebound in the forks a cpl clicks at a time.

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Long rear axle setting, lower pegs, lower shock.

I stuffed my YZ motor into an RM250. Brilliant handling bike. Very different static geometry too. RM has slacker steering angle, less offset, longer swingarm, lower frame/ground clearance. Ruined YZ's for me...

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I HATE the way my YZ turns and feels in rutted corners. It is awful. I have 2 of them,I have tried everything from 17mm o/s triple clamps to 20mm o/s to running the fork like 15mm up in the top clamp.

 

I also have 100mm sag and the correct spring rates.

 

The things has useless traction of front .

 

I love the bikes, but the lack of traction feel on the front really makes me want to change bikes!

I'm away at present, feeling home sick, missing riding, with some time to burn ...

 

No, that is not just how the YZ is.

 

It sounds like you are experiencing a basic setup issue, and nothing related to the front end character of a alum framed YZ250, or any of your YZ250 bikes in the past.

 

You have partially contradicted yourself. You imply your YZ won't rail rutted corners, then you also say it has no front traction.  In rutted corners you don't need traction. The wheels are either railing the rut (often unlimited turning traction) or they are not.

 

There are three parts to a corner, and diff types of corners, so saying a bike won't turn really doesn't give many or any clues.

 

Cornering solutions are not always a case of getting more weight on the front, or lowering the front end, or slowing down the fork rebound. Sure that advice works pretty well for a total novice. But if you have just a little pace potential you should be able to sit in a fairly neutral position on the bike and the thing just goes where ever you want with surprisingly little effort.

 

Does your front tyre feel disconnected from the apex toward exit of a corner rut? I mean you turn the bars and the tyre has no bite, like there is air underneath it?

 

Or in a straight rut on a downhill, does the front compress then again feel disconnected?

 

If you answer yes or even maybe to either or both of those questions, then you have a basic setup problem, and probably have had the same problem on your last 5 YZs.   It's simple to fix.

 

Could be your fork clickers. Front packing down. Comp too soft. Reb too slow.

Could be you don't have enough rear sag, so the rear cannot squat enough under power, which prematurely disconnects the front tyre out of the rut. Making you push wide or fall to the inside.  100mm of sag is not a set and forget. Rear sag is relative to the front setup.

 

Could be your fork springs are too stiff, so not enough fork sag in the front. Reminder: The correct springs depends a lot on how you ride.

 

Could be your fork springs are too soft. So they dive to much, make you shift your weight too far aft, then the rebound unloads the front at the wrong time. Bingo, front end vague feeling.

 

You need sag on both ends so your tyres can keep more contact with the dirt when the ground drops away. It's real subtle. A small disconnect of a tyre escalates into loss of control, then it get worse.

 

Could be your fork tubes are up too high in the triple clamps. Again this can disconnect the front tyre too early as you apply drive power. Forks up in the triples helps turn in if the front is well planted, but too much causes other problems.

 

Get it all right and the YZ will rail those ruts no problems. It'll feel like cheating.

I've asked some questions, and made a few guesses to try help you, but it's not easy to work out what your problem is. Even if I guessed right on some things, it might take you 2 or 20 hours of ride time and experimenting to sort it out. Some guys can never fix it, so they try a different bike.

Edited by numroe
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Right I know this topic has been posted many a time before.

 

I HATE the way my YZ turns and feels in rutted corners. It is awful. I have 2 of them,I have tried everything from 17mm o/s triple clamps to 20mm o/s to running the fork like 15mm up in the top clamp.

 

I also have 100mm sag and the correct spring rates.

 

The things has useless traction of front .

 

I love the bikes, but the lack of traction feel on the front really makes me want to change bikes!

 

Any ideas?

 

The yz seems a lot more sensitive to sag etc than other bikes,It Is a nightmare in downhill ruts.

 

Is this just how the yz is?

 

This will be my 5th yz 250 by the way.

 

Thanks

If you are not pleased with the Yamaha handling as of now, then that must mean that you've ridden something better that your comparing it too. So which manufacture would you prefer the Yamaha handle like? Honda? Suzuki? Kawasaki? KTM? Something else?

 

Like numroe said, you can make the Yamaha handle incredibly well with some concentrated effort on your part. I've tried all of the big 5, and I keep coming back to the Yamaha, and it's because of the handling that I keep coming back!

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Every bit of research I've done on this bike leads me to believe the stock ride height is fine, the stock triple clamp offset is fine, and the only thing people need to focus on is a proper setup. I've only put about an hour on mine so far, but the front feels very planted for me off the showroom floor.

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Done TONS of testing with offset. Definitely will always have the front end floppy feel with stock offset compared to sharper turning bikes.

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Done TONS of testing with offset. Definitely will always have the front end floppy feel with stock offset compared to sharper turning bikes.

 

You are saying that the stock offset clamps make the bike feel floppy and unstable? That is quite opposite from my findings.

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FRONT end floppy. Translates less to the rear and center of the chassis. Basically more steering independence. KTM and Suzuki have the steering more mechanically coupled to the rest of the chassis through reduced offset. So any headshake gets translated to the main frame and rear end.

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FRONT end floppy. Translates less to the rear and center of the chassis. Basically more steering independence. KTM and Suzuki have the steering more mechanically coupled to the rest of the chassis through reduced offset. So any headshake gets translated to the main frame and rear end.

 

Ah. Well I will know more after this weekend, but all my Yamaha's have been very stable and neutral handling bikes. I'm coming off a KTM 250SX and that thing was twitchy set at 20mm offset. Guess it comes down to rider preference, but I like the stable feeling. Then again I don't have traction issues like the OP does.

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Correct. Your statement corroborates mine. Need to find that diagram of how offset affects tire contact patch in turning. Makes it pretty clear.

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Correct. Your statement corroborates mine. Need to find that diagram of how offset affects tire contact patch in turning. Makes it pretty clear.

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GHILL28 -Thanks for the reply.

 

I guess I worded my post a bit wrong. Basically im having trouble steering with the front of the bike. KTM's do this well as well as a RM 250 I had. But the suspension and overall stability of the YZ is superior in my opinion.

 

I am 205lbs no gear. Stock Fork spring front and 5.75 rear spring. Suspension had been revolved for the woods. I ride at Expert level in the UK.

 

I have a 18'' wheel with a worn mousse in the rear. That may contribute to the back end to be low, thus making the front end hard to turn. I struggle mostly on hard pack stuff where there is minimal or no rut.

 

The feeling im getting is that the bike is pushing me forward and the front end wants to climb out of the rut. Like it's riding on air.

 

Most people who jump on my bike off a ktm say it feels long and hard to turn. I  would rather burn my eyes out than give KTM any of my money with their cheap made mass production rubbish.

 

Overall 'Handling' is good, it is very stable and predictable bike.I wish I could get it to turn sharper and 'stick' more to the ground on the front.  I run 17mm offset clamps on my 09 that im having issues with at the moment , with the forks raised about 12mm. They may be my issue?

 

Thanks for the replies.

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I am 205lbs no gear. Stock Fork spring front and 5.75 rear spring. Suspension had been revolved for the woods. I ride at Expert level in the UK.

 

The feeling im getting is that the bike is pushing me forward and the front end wants to climb out of the rut. Like it's riding on air.

I think triple clamp offset has little to nothing to do with what you want to fix.

 

A 5.75 rear spring with stock 0.44 springs on the front seems absurd, for the YZ250 and 205 lbs of rider. So far out of balance. If you put your weight forward to better utilise the rear, then your front end will sink half way through it's stroke. Dive city. In turns depending on what you do with your weight and throttle it could tuck and turn in, or disconnect and drop low side.   No wonder you hate it. You should hate it!  I know KTMs come with some soft fork springs. It's not a KTM.

 

Re "riding on air".  See what I wrote previously. About that disconnected feeling, and soft fork springs, and having your fork tubes set too high in your triples. It's all there, if you can be bothered reading it.

 

Put some stiffer springs in the front, I'd guess at least 0.46. Set your fork caps at about 2mm above the triples. Learn to keep your weight forward. Head above the bars more often and/or your balls up near the fuel cap.  If you are one of those riders who normally stands and flaps off the back, then it'll probably take you a lot of ride time to adapt to trusting the front 100%.

 

There is always a good combination of spring rate and valving damper settings, and based off what you've written in two posts I suspect you need more spring, and if that's too harsh for trails then soften the base valve stacks by removing a face shim or installing a smaller diam clamp shim. Stock mid valve should be ok.  If you already have soft woods valving and the soft fork springs then that sounds like a complete mess.

If all your YZs felt similar, then I'd guess you've not yet experienced what a YZ250 should feel like.

Edited by numroe

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I will try that. I need that rear spring to get my sag right. It's at 100mm / 20mm free sag.

 

I will have a go at :-

 

Changing my rear tyre and put a fresh mousse in

 

Forks at 2mm as advised

 

I can't afford springs right now .I might bump the compression back up slightly.

 

My rear axle is adjusted quite far back in the swingarm, what effect will this have on it?

 

Thanks

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