08 WR 450 handling issues

I ride in the Desert here in Southern California,it is very squirrely at speed in the soft stuff and digs in (oversteers) in tight turns. My 04 YZ 450 has none of these problems. I have tried different sag and suspension settings,and yes, I have a stabilizer. I am wondering if anyone has tried different tripple clamp angles?

are the tops of your forks flush with the triple clamp or do you have them past the top? for dez and sand i have them flush and mx/single track i have them about 1/4" higher than the clamp helps a lot

You prolly need the bike resprung and revalved.

the fork tube position plays a HUGE role in this...

i was experiencing the same issues, then moved the tubes down in the tripple trees a few mm and the handling improved greatly

What front tire are you using?

It has already been resprung

I am using a mx51 90 in the front

I will try different positions on the forks, thanks all

What are your current spring rates fr/rr and weight? Definitely fork position and rear sag plays a part in this as well. One thing I have always enjoyed is the stability of this bike. Currently running Precision Concepts revalve, but even stone stock the bike was not at all twitchy at speed in the sand washes. I don't run a stabilizer, but forks are definitely flush at the clamps. The stock front tire is also no bueno if it's still on there.

Coming off a YZ, keep in mind you are also carrying a little more weight on the the front end of the bike now in comparison, which will need to be compensated for.

I resprung my WR when I got it and the bike was better but still a bit harsh.

I had Smart Performance shuffle the shims on it and it's like a different bike now.

I just wish I had done it much sooner.

I am having the same problem on my '09. Always had the forks flush with the top of the triple clamp. At first, the bike would not wheelie easily, so I tried different sag settings and found that 106mm worked the best.

I also have a 2006 WR which is a little more stable. I suspect that the softness of the front end is partly to blame on both bikes. I'd bet a good revalve would cure all this but I'm selling both bikes and may eventually get another brand.

Edited by Navaho6

Let's pretend, hypothetically :devil: , that the suspension on my 2009 WR450F has never been adjusted, it is as it was when it came out of the crate. I weigh 210 lbs. Where should I start in setting it up? Trails,sand logging roads are the primary use. I'm 44, pretty mellow riding. Took it to a MX track a few times, but those trips are few and far between. I have just been getting on it and riding, change the oil frequently, but way past time to try to tune/adjust the suspension a bit.

Start by changing the fork springs and shock spring. The stock springs are way too light for your weight.

Set your race sag to 106 and change your fork oil to 7wt or 10wt and set level of oil to 110 mm below top of fork tube with springs out and tubes collapsed. Adjust compression and rebound for thicker oil.

After that, then do like a lot of others did - spend hundreds of dollars on suspension mods, get frustrated and finally give up on making the WR suspension work and either put YZ suspension on it or just sell it and move on to something that can be made to work half decent.

Check out Race Tech's spring calculator to see what spring stiffness is right for your weight and riding. It may not be exact, but it's pretty close. I went to .48kg in the front and 5.8kg in the rear and I'm about 190. Stock I believe is .46kg and 5.5kg.

I tried everything oil,springs,Zip ty triple clamps nothing worked in that direction. It was Yamaha's cheap base valves that were the problem. The spring sacks out on the bottom base valves and the oil by passes.

It was fixed by installing Race tec gold valves. They use shims instead of a spring.


Hang on to your '04 YZ.

I rode the 2012, 2009 and 2006 WR450's back to back yesterday in some hilly, deep sand tracks with a lot of jumps. The '09 had stock suspension. The '06 had Race tech valving and slightly heavier fork springs (.47), and the 2012 was stock. I am 165 lbs, b-level rider. Both the '09 and '06 are mine, set up at 105mm sag. The '2012 was at stock settings.

My impression of all three:

2009: stock suspension is rediculously inadequate. For my style of riding, it is a little twitchy even at 106 mm of race sag, with forks set flush with top of clamp and with a steering damper. You have to be agressive and 100% focused in the turns all the time. My guess is that the alum. framed WR's have a steeper rake, at least that is the way it feels to me. Depending on your riding style, this may be good or not so good.

2012: stock suspension is purely phenominal!!! I jumped off a 2-foot ledge at high speed, and it was if I never left the ground. Very supportive but ultra smooth action! Handling is a little better than the '09 simply because of the suspension but still feels a little less stable than my '06 WR. The sag was obviously wrong for my weight. It was difficult to wheelie.

2006: Still my favorite right now for two reasons - very stable cornering and stable when on the back wheel. The geometry of the chasis makes it easy to go fast. . I am getting very close to finding the proper valving combo for this bike with Race Tech, although it will never be as good as the SSS suspension on the '12 WR.

Edited by Navaho6

Increase the Compression dampaning in the fork! At least 4 clicks and see if it gets better. This is even more important if you increased the spring rate without revalving the fork to compensate for the heavy springs If it improves do the same to the shock. if it improves even more get it revalved by someone good.

This is similar advice to what has already been given

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