Gearing help?


I have been wanting to get back into trail riding (it's been like 20 years!) and I recently bought a 2003 YZ450F for the amazing price of $2000. I know that it may not be the perfect trail bike but the price was right and since I'm 6'5" 240lbs I thought it was a good choice.

I know this thing is a beast and geared for MX rather than trail. So my question is... could I or should I make a sprocket change to help me manage the bike? Would it be a bit safer or smarter to start out this way since I'm just getting back into this?

I'm not planning on being a maniac out there, but I just wanted your expert opinions.


It depends, on how you look at it. The '03 is a fat handful in terms of its power delivery, and they remind me a lot of an old big block Chevelle; the power is explosive at low speeds. Not at all unmanageable, but something that demands your attention.

Lowering the gearing will make the bike a little easier to operate at very low speeds, but at the same time, it also gives the engine an even bigger advantage than it already has, and you have to pay attention to keep the front end down and maintain traction. You also loose more in top speed than you gain in low speed tractability. It's sort of a toss up, IMO.

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