400 to a 426....or just go a Ktm 450?

Hey guys,

I have a beautiful 99 400 with the basic bolt ons. But after a year of ridding I feel like a 426 or a 450. Its just that I want more power and a way lighter bike!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The bike just frickin dives into corners! Also the bar setup that i have is not right for me.....it came with the bike.The bars are not tall for me since im 6 foot 8 and the bike is scary to take off big jumps. Would it be worth it to trade up to a 2002 426 and put all the goodies from bike on it? Or just get a ktm 450 with some suspension work and a fmf system done to it? I have been told that the ktms are green stickers.

Is it worth it too you?

I've heard bad things about the reliability of the KTM's. They're supposed to be really good bikes, but what's the point in spending that much money and having a bike that needs more maintenence and probably won't last as long.

I know it doesn't mean anything at a normal persons level, but have you noticed that no one ever wins 250/450 class on one either?

I know they have gotten a few notches in the 125 class, but the top 250 rider is usually back in last place.

Like I said, I'm sure they're good bikes, but I guess I'm just not a KTM fan. Go out and get yourself a nice YZ450 and call it a day.

I have a '04 450exc and have had NO maintenance issues. keep the valves adjusted and you shouldn't have a problem. Some parts are a little spendy but they seem to be set up well for taller riders.

Granted I don't have any buddies your height but my one friend is about 6'4" and is very happy with the set up on his. He was considering the crf450 but was a lot happier with the set up on the KTM. but it's still not a light bike. but it is lighter than others in it's class with the same options. :):D

I think KTMs are the taller of the 450s. There's no replacement for displacement! Go with a 450 4 sure.

Get a different bar set up that fits you better, it could make a world of difference! Tall seat foam, lowboy pegs, tallest bend bars, tripple clamps that raise the bars. I would do all this before i went out and bought a new bike, because it might make you feel a lot better.

I understand from a colleage who does fork rebuilds for a living, informs me the front forks are troblesome and require a lot of work to keep them up to spec..for what its worth.

I've actually had the chance to ride all of the aformentioned bikes. I've got an '02 426 and I love it to death. I'm also 6'3". i've ridden a YZ450, and they are awesome. They are faster, but not much. It was an '05, so it was tamed a bit. The KTM was great too, but the shrouds stick out and my knees hit them. It's no big deal at first, but after a while, it hurts a bit. I've also ridden a yz400, and you'll be much happier with any of these bikes, power wise, than a 400. I'm not dogging on them, I just thought my 426 blew it out of the water. I weigh 230, and my bike is perfect for me, but I guess I've got muscle and wieght to push the bike around. It's whatever you want, but that's my two cents, Spend them wisely :)

I have a stock 01 WR426 (except airbox and bark busters) and I am 6' 05" and 245lbs. The bike has plenty of power for me (it flat out hauls a$$!) and I have not done the mods to it yet. One thing I need to do is get the device (forgot the name) that pushes the handlebars up and out. Sometimes I feel like the handle bars are too close. Take yoiur time with the decision. The KTM's are very nice (and light) but are quite a bit more $$$. Dollar for dollar I felt the WR was a better purchase. IMO

The 426 isn't much lighter than the 400F if I remember right. If I were you, here's what I'd do:

02 top triple (moves bars forward and up) with universal adapters or aftermarket with the tallest mounts you can find

Windham bend Pro Tapers (tallest bend available I believe)

Tall seat

Lower the footpegs (free, save a little time cutting)

450 cam

Thunder Alley pipe

If after all that you still aren't happy with the 400, then you are way more man than most! :)

well.the power is great........some of my friends that ride 450's gave it a go and said that it was great. They were surprized and liked the power but hated the front end......i do too. I just know it can be better. I rode a 426 and it felt better in the handling department but power wasnt that huge of a jump. But it was more. I have a FMF powerbomb header and a PowerCore 4 exhaust. That woke it up alot.

If I got a 450 yamaha and put a smaller rear spocket on it would it be better suited for all around riding or is the stoc geraing fine?I would also do the bar setup aswell. Would i be happy with the 04 front end compared to my bike?

For trails riding you would want a bigger rear sprocket for more bottom end..

I bet you will not find the jump to a 426 worth the money over continuing to fine tune yours. I have some seat time in a 525 EXC KTM and I wouldn't dog it, but its handling is far more "trucky" than my 426. Motor was nice, but I just spent some time re jetting mine and found a lot more throttle response and more overall power in just a few mods and a little time. This is an expensive hobby, it will be much more so on a KTM, though I do like the bike. On the other hand, If you tear up the 400, 426s are a lot of bike for the dollar. 450s get the limelight, and the new aluminum frame is coming, so you will likely find some real bargains. I did. Good luck.

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