Gearing YZ426F for the Trail

Just bought an '01 YZ426F and love the power it has. The only disappointment I've had with it is that it doesn't like some of the steep/rough spots on the trail. Does anyone have any recommendations as to better gearing for the trail. I don't really do much motocross, spend most of my time on the trails. I would have liked to find a WR426, but the price on this was so good I couldn't pass it up.

Also, anyone who lives in the St. Louis area that would like to go hit some trails, give me a yell.

I installed a 51tooth rear sprocket and a 12oz flywheel weight on my YZ400 and it made a HUGE difference for trail riding. I can now idle around in 1st and climb obstacles such as large rocks a logs without even using the clutch.


Auto clutch. :applause:

Thanks Luke, I'll give that a try... is the flywheel weight a b*tch to install? How many teeth are you running on the front sprocket? The spot I couldn't get through was and uphill with some big rocks, I was slipping the clutch like mad, giving it the gas and it still kept dying. I found out just how much it sucks starting it on a hill too. Other than that, I had a great time keeping my buddy on his KDX200 behind me. Aside from dumping it on a log, it was a great first day of trail riding on the YZ.

Yeah, we were in the same boat. Every time I went out my bike was puking antifreeze and the clutch was overheating (tough single track w/lots of rocks etc). The front is stock, 13 teeth I think, but better check first. The rear was 49 before I switched it.

Installing the flywheel weight is not that bad, but you need the flywheel puller tool. The kit came with a tap, different bolts and 3 flywheel weights 8oz, 10oz and 12oz. I'm not using it any more because I've installed an external stator, which adds 11oz of weight.

You've just got to remove the cover, then the flywheel. Drill 4 holes with the included bit using the weight as a guide, tap the holes, install the weight, bolt it on using lock tite, grind off the extra length of the bolts sticking out the back, reinstall and you are done. Maybe an hour and a half if you have a bit of skill, faster if you are real good.


Thanks again for the good news... I think I'll try those things before I sell it and go to a WR. Any other tips on making this motocrosser more trail freindly? Also, what's this autoclutch you speak of Chas?

I've got a 12oz. flywheel weight, a 51-tooth rear sproket and a Rekluse auto clutch, of the three, there's no question that the Rekluse made thei biggest difference for trail riding. If I was starting over, I'd do the Rekluse first and it's likely I wouldn't change either the gearing or the flyweel weight. The Rekluse is really amazing. Do a search on "rekluse" on this forum and you're read a bunch of raving testamonials.

Yo Yo. congrats on your bike. I have a 00 and I have the stock 14 tooth on the front and went to a 51 on the rear. I ride trails and motocross and it works pretty good. I think I would go to a 52 tooth if I pretty much only hit trails. stock gearing was way to high for trails. I ride dunes as well and I am going to go 13 teeth on the front for that one. Good Luck!

Thanks for the direction, this forum kicks ass...

put on a 12 front and 51 rear. that thing will pull for days, no matter how tight, steep or technical the trails. just say good-bye to the rear tire. if you think it spins easy stock... hold on tight. :applause:

I have been wondering some of the same things for gearing my 01 for more trails and I too considered selling my YZ for a WR but it sounds like a 51 rear is the way to go. Thanks for speaking my mind guys!

My friend has a WR450, and his first is still lower (too low IMO, don't know if it's stock or not) and his 5th is taller. So, when you gear down the YZ you won't be able to go hyper highway speed I guess. With the 51 rear, I feel my bike is just right for the trails I ride, which range from fast 2 track to real slow rock crawling gnarly single track.


Just bought an '01 YZ426F and love the power it has. The only disappointment I've had with it is that it doesn't like some of the steep/rough spots on the trail.

Mr Workout,

You now have a bike that matches your Username!

Seriously, here is what I recommend:

I have a 00-426. The Stock gearing - 14/49 was just too high for the woods. (Alot of stalling in the tight stuff but - Great for the MX track)

I race Harescramble and a little MX and went with a 14/52. Perfect for the woods (Tight woods) I would get all new sprockets (14/52 gearing) a new O-Ring Chain and get some Acerbis Ralley Pro-Handguards, Front - Acerbis Disk Cover and a new Maxiss IT -Rear tire and you are set. Total cost for all the above is around 250.00 If you still aren't happy with the above, then I would go with a Fly-Wheel weight. I have found I don't need one with the 14/52 gearing and still like the grunt on the MX Track.

Hope this helped... :applause:

I decided to start out less expensive first, so I just ordered a 52 tooth rear sprocket. I'll see how that does me. If that's not good enough, I'll move on to the front, then the flywheel weight if necessary. This really helped out a lot. Thanks!

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