Offroad potential of YZF?

I've seen lots of guys racing yzf426's in Hare Scrambles and Enduro's. I was wondering if any of these riders could give me some input on how the 426 works/handles when being raced offroad. By the way, I race offroad here on the eastcoast, so how it handles really tight and technical stuff is important. Just as a size reference, I'm 6'2" and 135lbs. Most bikes feel rather small to me...

revalve it to be softer, might want to consider next size down springs

hi there poor boy ive got a 2000 426 and race hare scrambles and gncc type races here in nz and i love my 426 for this all ive done to mine is soften the front end up the rear was fine (im 6/4 and 220pounds)and added a 10 oz fly wheel weight to help smooth the power and the stalling and the bike worlks great now its the best bike i have ridden good luck dude hope i helped a wee bit

Hi Poorboy, noticed you live in State College, have you ever ridden at Tower City?? I ride an 00 426 in the tight technical stuff at Tower City and there is a lot of it, but I do not race. I'm pretty much a weekend warrior, but I'll throw my 2 cents in. I also ride a YZ 250 and the 426 is as good in the woods if not better. You don't need to clutch nearly as much and the smoother power delivery make the rock and rut navigation much easier. My only complaint in the bikes weight (top heavy) and it's willingness to stall. I personally have never had any issues with starting the bike after a hot stall, but it will stall rather easy if your not carefull. I also geared the bike down, by going to a 51 tooth rear sprocket. My first attempt was a 13/49, but that was waaay to low, and it robbed much of the top end. I ended up with 14/51 and that seems to be the perfect combination for tight woods without sacraficing too much top end.

I race my 426 here in Oregon and our terrain/trails are extremely tight on the West side of the state. To make the mighty 4twenny6 woods worthy, I recommend the following mods:

* an absolute MUST is getting a heavier flywheel weight! No more stalls and easier starting. You can get one from Steahly Off-Road: 1-800-800-2363

* modify the boingers so they're supple to high-speed roots/rocks. I went to softer fork springs, Gold Valves on both ends and slight revalving.

* I installed a White Bros. E-Series muff/spark arrestor. I'm down to 5 discs and it still runs out great, but I would still like it even quieter, however it is WORLDS quieter than the annoyingly rude stock muff.

Other things I've done (I'm 6'1", 220lb) is installed a WER steering dampener (love it), one-inch taller seatfoam and cover from Gutz Racing, taller Windham bars, o-ring chain and heavy-duty tubes. Would also like to spring for an 18-inch rear wheel instead of the dumb 19" one (trade anyone?). I've raced off road for years and this bike is probably the most fun bike I've ever had. I'll repeat though, the flywheel weight is a must! Hope that helps.


i race a 98 wr400f with some yzf mods in both mx and harescrambles here in western pennsyvania, and i am 5'9", 170 lb. it gets a little tall at times, but is manageable (even through it's imense weight) perfect power for offroad.

i only need to turn my compression adjustments a couple clicks and add barkbusters to be ready to hit the trails or H/S track...

hope it helped.

any questions, e-mail me :)

Hey Matt W,

Yeah, I've been to Tower City before. I used to ride there all the time before it got closed up. Since then I haven't had the heart to pay for a membership. Plus now I'm studying at Penn State full-time and don't have much time to go riding. Have you tried out Rausch Creek? Its a nice practice area. I'm hoping to seriously compete in a H/S series this year for once. I've never been able to complete a full season before.

How much extra does it cost (ballpark figure) to get a yzf offroad ready? BTW, I misprinted my weight. I'm 235, not 135. Big difference.

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