problems with '98, 99 versus '00

I havent had any problems with my '00 426 yet thank God. I was just curious the problems being reported about the clutch, gear breakage, and hubs shattering: are these problems occuring only on the 426 or are the problems shared with the '98 and '99 400. Dont these bikes all have the same hardware?


Clutch basket was changed from 99 to ’00 YZ. 426 has an additional plate. But the hubs are the same. I think people are breaking hubs because their chain is too tight. If you want to give yourself some piece of mind set your chain tension and then remove linkage and see how tight the chain is with swingarm parallel to the ground (point during suspension travel where chain is tightest).

Gears were changed as well, but I don’t know what the difference is.


Good idea to check chain tighness. But that brings up another question.......... How tight should the chain be on the tightest point? Just loose enough to not restrict travel? Or should there be maybe 1/2 inch slack? Sorry to beat a dead horse on this subject, but I am interested.


That’s a good question.

Any amount of tension here between the sprockets is bad, so perhaps just loose enough to allow some play between sprockets is the right setting, and that is probably less than ½ inch but more than what would restrict arm travel. On the other hand maybe a small fudge factor is warranted here as well, but I can’t think of a good reason why.


Personally I have never measured my tension, I’ve always just eyeballed it and used the 3 finger rule. But after hearing those “exploding hub” stories I’m thinking this is not the best approach. :)

My bike is all apart anyway and I’ve wanted to try this and see how much slack with bike back on stand this results in (DaveJ has noted that min. recommended range was too tight in his post on the hub issue but didn’t mention what was “just right”).

But it may be next week before this happens because I am waiting for my wheel to be reassembled.

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