Forks on 04 WR 450, what did you do?

I think that my forks could work better.

Has anyone made changes to their forks that made the action better?

I have a stock spring, 5.5 inches oil level, 5 wt oil.

I was considering 2.5 wt to soften the action in the trees, but would it be better to buy new springs before I change the weight of the oil.

I don't want to waste my time, so some help would be appreciated.

I have looked at peoples signatures to see what people have done, but most people seem to change things for more power. There are few suspension mods done.

i went to honda 5w fork oil and it does provide easier action,don't worry about it being red my bike hasn't spit it out yet! come out a little on your compression dampening,i run 16 out on comp and 8 out on rebound i've put .48 springs in though. this allows me to use the entire stroke without bottoming(unless i screw up!) :thumbsup:

I removed the mid-valve from the forks, and that really helped. Now it has a nice stroke all the way through the forks, with no hit in the middle.

This is the first time I have heard about the mid-value.

Mid stroke seems to be the big problem. I bottom too often, but if I increase the compression the action becomes harsh.

I'm currently at the softest compression setting.

Can you tell me where and how to handle the mid-value.

I'm wondering if a softer spring would make the mid stroke better or if the stock spring will work once the mid-valve is removed.

Is this where people talk about changing the stack to get more compression at certain places in the stroke??

If you're bottoming too often, you need to add more fork oil.

All I did with my forks was change the oil (5 wt) and they perform nicely. The oil in the forks for the factory was like black sludge.

The forks do seem a bit stiff when riding slowly, but when I'm smacking off the top of whoops in 4th gear, they work just fine.

how much do you weigh? if your over 180 then the thing is undersprung for sure. going to a softer spring will make you bottom worse! yam makes spring spacers you can use up to 2 in each fork they go under your spring and increase preload without changing the spring rate therefore you use more of the available resistance throughout the fork travel. :thumbsup:


The forks work OK at speed, a little harsh at times, but OK.

The problem is I tend to race hares scrambles which is mostly technical tight trails but the occasional MX track section causes some bottoming if a over-jump a table, for example.

I have changed the oil a couple times (5 wt) already, and the action is still not what I think it should be.


I'm exactly 180. There is always some compromise when your terrain and course vary the way a hare scrambles course varies. I could increase compression to find a happy medium, but now the bike is only happy at MX speed.

I appreciate your responses and I'm thinking about all of them.

try the washers they are cheap and slide right in after removing the spring,and are you using the honda fork oil? it really did help. :thumbsup:

I tried diffrent levels and weights of oil but never got the results I wanted. I had to have the compression all the way out to get the smoothness I wanted, but then it would bottom out too easy. With the mid-valve removed I could make the compression alittle stiff yet still have a smooth fork. It's not that hard to remove the stack of shims that are for the mid-valve (didnt take any longer than changing seals). But unless you know what you are doing and what to remove it can be quite complicated.


The front fork is too stiff already I don't think I want to shim it, right?


I felt like something was wrong with the fork and you described it perfectly. I do all my own maintainence, so I'll look at the exploded view and see what it takes.

Thanks for the reply.

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now