4 speed tranny,like or dislike?

A friend of mine just got an 04 YZF450. Havn't rode it yet, but i was wondering how all of you Yz'ers like the 4 speed tranny, compared to the 5 on my CRF? I rarely use 5th on mine, but am wondering if you even miss it not being there and what ratios are the four that are there? :)

Off-road can be a bit of a challenge if you ride, tight southeastern-type stuff.

I've never felt the need for a fifth gear (either lower than first or higher than fourth) on the track.

I believe you'll find the final ratio in 4th on the 450 with stock gearing is almost identical to 5th on the 426.

It's close to having 426 ratios with 1st gear left out. Not identical, but close.

Again, it's only been a bit of an issue in the woods.


A friend of mine just got an 04 YZF450. Havn't rode it yet, but i was wondering how all of you Yz'ers like the 4 speed tranny, compared to the 5 on my CRF? I rarely use 5th on mine, but am wondering if you even miss it not being there and what ratios are the four that are there? :)

Kansas Hare Scrambler here.

I have noticed that to make my '04 managable in the tight stuff resulted in a 14-51 combination (14-48 is stock). I have run out of top end only once thus far.

These things really turn the rpms.

Heavier flywheel. Dr. D exhaust. Bark-busters and let 'er rip! Big time fun! :D

Mark S.

On the track I use 2ND. and 3RD., 4th. gear very rarely I really only need 3, the cool thing is that it's hard to be in the wrong gear because you only use two or maybe 3.

The motor is incredible there is this little double out of a left hander at the track I ride and I have done it in first second and third, pretty amazing.

When i had my YZ450 i actually didn't mind the 4-speed, even in the desert.

I'm one of the pscycos that wouldn't mind if Honda's CRF450's had the 4-speed, it does the job, it's just all about the proper gearing.

I also have 14-51 gearing for MX. I only use 2nd (only in the tightest corners, usually once or twice per lap), 3rd and 4th. I'm mostly in 3rd.

4 is plenty on this powerfull bike!!!!!!!!!!!1 :thumbsup:


it took a little time to get used to, but now I`m just fine with it!! I ride only track and I don`t see a reason why I should have a 5th gear!!!!


I think you'll like the 4 spd Cam. It doesn't like to put around at 1 mph, but who wants to do that anyway?

The 4 speed is great with this motor. The common misconception most people have with it is that they just took their previous 5 speed and got rid of 5th gear. What they actually did was spread out the gaps between each of the 4 gears to come up with an overall spread that is almost the same as the previous 5 speed. All you need is a motor with enough ponies spread out over a wide band and this bike definitely has that covered. The Honda could easily get away with the 4 speed box also. :thumbsup:

I love 4 speed for MX. No need for 5th gear at all nor do I ever miss it! I hope this continues in MX bikes for 2005!

i've been riding mainly at the tracks but, did ride out at ocotillio a couple times. the bike has no problem keeping up on top end in wide open spaces and, not having to shift as much at the track is a good thing. :thumbsup:

I ride mostly woods and race harescrambles and I love the bike. I am coming off of a 2000 WR400F. Actually when I am riding in the woods, I don't even realize it is only a four speed. I raced my first harescramble with this bike two weeks ago and got second place. I have never placed better then 8th before on the WR. The weight and the unbelievable power is what I like the best about the bike. I don't even have a fly wheel and I haven't changed from stock gearing yet. I did put in a z-start clutch.

I only use 2nd and 3rd mostly for MX. Only once in awhile do I hit 4th. Not missing a 5th here.

Wow, I hate to be the only person to disagree, but I have to be honest – EVERY time I ride I wish my YZ450 was a 5 speed! Don’t get me wrong, this bike is the best I have ever owned, in every category. It also has more than enough power for practically every riding condition that I run into.

Maybe the 4 speed IS better for riding on the track (I don’t know because I only ride off road). Unfortunately, where I ride the most (the Oregon dunes), there are some long, very tight trails combined with some extremely wide-open, flat stretches. I find myself slipping the clutch enough to make me cringe in the tight switchbacks. I also hate having to keep my bike pinned in the upper rpm level several minutes while trying to keep up with my buddies as we blast down the flat section.

If I had a 5 speed, I could use first without having to slip the clutch, and still have enough gearing left over to cruise down the straightaway instead of having to wail on my bike the whole time. I know that I could have gotten a WR, but I wanted something that was light, and I prefer the power and suspension that comes with the motocrosser. I have never regretted buying my YZ, but I still do wish it was a 5 speed ! What irritates me is that you can’t easily convert to a different transmission (like I’ve heard you can on a KTM). I think Yamaha would do well if they would offer an affordable kit to replace the 4 speed with a 5 speed transmission. Until then, I’ll just keep watching each new year’s model, hoping they switch to a 5 speed … :thumbsup:

you wont wish you had 5th, you will wish you had first. thats the one that is missing. the top gear in the four speed, is pretty much the same as the top gear in the 5 speed trans.

its like they just took first out. fine if youre always flat out, the motor is plenty powerful, but they wont chug very well at low end.


Sounds like you're a candidate for an auto-clutch. I put one in my CRF and now it's like magic in the tight stuff. :thumbsup:


Piru Gorman or LACR?


I here you on the tight stuff :cry:when ever i kill the 4 speed i will try to put a wr gear box in I might have to replace the cases to im not sure. :thumbsup:

I ride in the desert. I'm not an MX rider...at least not yet! This bike has more than enough power and torque for the gear spacing that it has. I am plenty happy with it as it came off of the showroom floor. For my type of riding, I do occasionally find myself wound out in fourth and wishing I had one more gear. It is at this point that my buddy on his KTM 525EXC goes wizzing by. The first gear can be a little tall at times for slow speed stuff. Overall though, I think it is great and I haven't been dissatisfied enought that I have thought about going and changing anything. I have no doubts that you have all of the gearing you need for MX.

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