front/rear sprocket ratio

I have a XR650R with stock gearing, 14/48 I think. I have a 53 tooth rear sprocket to put on for the tight trails as I never hit 5 gear that much ever.

is going up 5 teeth in the rear be the same as dropping one tooth in the front?

It depends on what gear ratio you already have, but generally four teeth on the rear is roughly equal to one on the front. Just do the math; divide the rear tooth count by the front and you'll get the final drive ratio. For example, 13/48 = 3.69, 14/52 = 3.71.

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