My first 45 miles for WR450F - questions

This weekend I put my first 45 miles on my new 2003 WR450. I rode dirt roads, pastures, a short woods trail, and some tight woods stuff. I shortened the throttle stop screw and removed the two-hole air baffle at the filter after about 3 miles of playing.

This bike is awesome. I can hardly believe the power, especially after 1/2 throttle. I have an appointment in about a week to get the Woodruff key issue checked out per the -007 technical bulletin, although I had no problems whatsoever so far. By the way, starting is easy with or without the starter.

Now for my problems(or questions). During the tight woods stuff or when I rode barely above idle in 1st or 2nd gear, my radiator overheated three different times. The 1st time I lost all that was in my overflow jug. The other two times I stopped the bike to check it and the coolant was churning and gurgling. This seems like too much heat, even for low RPM riding or short idling. Any similar experience?

Also, after the first overheating, I had trouble with my shifter. It doesn't spring back when downshifting. I often had to pull it up a little with my foot.

Please let me know if any of you have had any similar experiences or have any suggestions. :)

Did you check the oil level? That would cause both problems. If thats not it, it might be lean and you have another problem with the tranny. Or I might be talking out of my arse.


The shifter not returning has been an issue for several of the WR450's, including mine. Apparently there are some burr's on the shift shaft that need to be taken off. Some people have reported that theirs started shifting normally after 150 miles or so. After about 30 miles, I let the Yami shop fix it under warranty. :)

I'm not sure what to tell you about the overheating problem. Mine gurgles all the time in the heat but I have never lost a drop of coolant from the overflow bottle. Like crushedreams mentioned...maybe it's a tad lean. :D

The oil level was fine. I'll get Yamaha to take care of the shifter when I get the rotor key thing done. I guess my only concern is the overheating. Maybe it's normal, it's just that I'm coming from an XR200, where the air cooled engine was never an issue. I assumed the water-cooled system would be the coolest. (By the way, the XR200 has never seemed so slow as it does now, even though it will actually be better in tight woods than the WR-you can almost bring it to a stop in second gear without a stall.)

Any more folks with experiences relating the shifter or overheating?

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