questions about my new-to-me 03 wr 450


22 replies to this topic
  • essonlaker

Posted August 17, 2014 - 04:30 PM

#1

just bought a 03 wr 450, street legal, with Baja designs dash and signal kit. absolutely love the bike, getting off a 00' ttr 225 so its a huge upgrade, has plenty of snot for me on a flat trail but is still manageable for my skill level in the woods, I feel its the perfect bike for me.  but I have a couple questions about it for folks who know more about the bigger bikes.

 

is it true that these are just noisy motors? mine has a bit of top end noise at idle, but runs great when moving.

 

 

how hot is this thing supposed to run? hot much heat could it tolerate before your getting hard on everything? has never gotten hot enough to boil or have any rideability issues or anything but you can really notice the heat between your legs. is this normal for this bike?

 

 

Thanks

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



  • Krannie McKranface

Posted August 17, 2014 - 05:12 PM

#2

just bought a 03 wr 450, street legal, with Baja designs dash and signal kit. absolutely love the bike, getting off a 00' ttr 225 so its a huge upgrade, has plenty of snot for me on a flat trail but is still manageable for my skill level in the woods, I feel its the perfect bike for me.  but I have a couple questions about it for folks who know more about the bigger bikes.

 

is it true that these are just noisy motors? mine has a bit of top end noise at idle, but runs great when moving.

 

 

how hot is this thing supposed to run? hot much heat could it tolerate before your getting hard on everything? has never gotten hot enough to boil or have any rideability issues or anything but you can really notice the heat between your legs. is this normal for this bike?

 

 

Thanks

 

Yes: noisy, clanky motors

Yes: The radiators vent on to your legs



  • Just_a_trail_rider

Posted August 18, 2014 - 06:27 AM

#3

just bought a 03 wr 450, street legal, with Baja designs dash and signal kit. absolutely love the bike, getting off a 00' ttr 225 so its a huge upgrade, has plenty of snot for me on a flat trail but is still manageable for my skill level in the woods, I feel its the perfect bike for me.  but I have a couple questions about it for folks who know more about the bigger bikes.

 

is it true that these are just noisy motors? mine has a bit of top end noise at idle, but runs great when moving.

 

 

how hot is this thing supposed to run? hot much heat could it tolerate before your getting hard on everything? has never gotten hot enough to boil or have any rideability issues or anything but you can really notice the heat between your legs. is this normal for this bike?

 

 

Thanks

Don't run this bike for any extended period of time while sitting still.    You won't hear that top end noise and it will not get hot between your legs.   When you are out on the trail and you come to a stop...  shut it off.   

 

Oh... make sure you are jetted correctly.  Get the JD Jetting kit and follow the instructions exactly.  That will help keep the temps where they should be.


Edited by mauricedorris, August 18, 2014 - 06:29 AM.


  • essonlaker

Posted August 18, 2014 - 04:46 PM

#4

I never idle for any period of time out on the trail longer then a road crossing, or else it gets shut off, rode my tt-r the same way, but in this wr you can feel the heat right between the feet even when cruising down a flat trail at 50 mph and gets warmer on more technical trails. Is there any other telltale signs that she's getting a bit warm to look out for? I suppose I could watch my overflow bottle from cold to warm to see how much it expands.



  • Krannie McKranface

Posted August 18, 2014 - 06:11 PM

#5

If it is jetted and uncorked, you don't have to worry about idling it at all.

Wr's don't run that hot, and the radiators are much bigger than YZ radiators.

Now, if you slip the clutch up a long hill, it will get hot and possibly overheat....which is what it is supposed to do. 

If it happens too often, you add a fan, or bigger radiators, or both.

 

If it happens rarely, you can just go with a higher (1.3) pressure cap, to raise the boiling temp.



  • Just_a_trail_rider

Posted August 18, 2014 - 08:15 PM

#6

I never idle for any period of time out on the trail longer then a road crossing, or else it gets shut off, rode my tt-r the same way, but in this wr you can feel the heat right between the feet even when cruising down a flat trail at 50 mph and gets warmer on more technical trails. Is there any other telltale signs that she's getting a bit warm to look out for? I suppose I could watch my overflow bottle from cold to warm to see how much it expands.

Something is not right with what you are saying here.  You should not really feel any heat while moving, especially at 50mph.    Is your right leg close to the exhaust or something? 



  • essonlaker

Posted August 19, 2014 - 04:05 AM

#7

everything is bone stock as far as I know, is reasonably quiet and says Yamaha on the muffler.  with some of the technical trails I ride I'm thinking a fan would work well. I haven't boiled it over.

 

 

I certainly feel a little heat at my ankles, almost all the time, of course I feel more on the exhaust side but there is noticeable heat on both sides.

on a real technical ride the heat coming off the rads and motor made me sweat like a pig, it was like laying on the hood of my truck on a sunny day, was starting to worry about it boiling. a buddy had an uncorked a

yz426f and got it warm enough on the same ride that it didn't want to idle and was a pain to start, so maybe my feet and legs are a little close and im not used to the rads venting on me (first liquid cooled bike)



  • Krannie McKranface

Posted August 19, 2014 - 05:18 AM

#8

Feel it on you ankles?

 

What, are you riding in flip-flops ??



  • JVP

Posted August 19, 2014 - 03:11 PM

#9

The only thing that get hot on these bikes is the Pipe.  Run that baby in the dark and watch it glow.  I have an 04 with over 15K on it.  I have never had an overheating issue.  The big issue is electrical.  If you have a Baja Kit on it, I am guessing that the stator has been fully converted to DC.  If that is the case, all you should do is make sure your jetting correct and the Carb is clean along with your Air Box/Filter.



  • essonlaker

Posted August 19, 2014 - 04:46 PM

#10

Feel it on you ankles?

 

What, are you riding in flip-flops ??

 I just wear steel toed work boots, on my feet and lower legs I feel heat that I don't feel riding anything else I've ridden. and my buddys say they don't notice such engine heat with their bikes

 

gotta get an air filter anyways i'll just get ahold of a jetting kit as well.



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  • Krannie McKranface

Posted August 19, 2014 - 04:52 PM

#11

 I just wear steel toed work boots, on my feet and lower legs I feel heat that I don't feel riding anything else I've ridden. and my buddys say they don't notice such engine heat with their bikes

 

gotta get an air filter anyways i'll just get ahold of a jetting kit as well.

 

NOOOOOoooooo!

 

Thats a great way to destroy your foot and ankle

 

Gotta wear riding boots.

 

Work boots are for walking and dropping hammers.



  • adam500

Posted August 19, 2014 - 05:34 PM

#12

+1 on getting a set of decent riding boots.

Your just going to ruin your boots that you need to wear everyday to make a living.

I know they are expensive but ya HAVE TO have them. 

They will feel like ski boots when you first wear them riding but when you break them in and get used to them you will have more support which = WAY more control over your bike.



  • essonlaker

Posted August 20, 2014 - 04:30 AM

#13

i actually have a pair that should fit i'll just give them another chance and actually break them in. when i got them (not broke in) i had no feel over anything, combine that with the inexperience at the time and i just gave up on them, must take a while to break in.

 

anyways i just realized my boss has one of them infrared thermometers i can borrow and simply see the temp its running at.



  • Just_a_trail_rider

Posted August 20, 2014 - 07:26 AM

#14

i actually have a pair that should fit i'll just give them another chance and actually break them in. when i got them (not broke in) i had no feel over anything, combine that with the inexperience at the time and i just gave up on them, must take a while to break in.

 

anyways i just realized my boss has one of them infrared thermometers i can borrow and simply see the temp its running at.

Which boots do you have the require a break in?   Are they hinged boots?    

 

I ridden a wr on some pretty technical 1st gear trails with lots of clutching.  Any bike will run a little hot when going too slow and abusing the clutch.   I never thought that the WR needed a fan, just a larger radiator.  Those big beefy chinese radiators you get on ebay are larger, stronger and will keep the bike much cooler.   The stock wr radiators on an 03 are small and flimsy.    On the other hand, the nice fans that are available today weren't around when I was setting up my old wr.   Things may have changed.



  • essonlaker

Posted August 21, 2014 - 04:43 AM

#15

okay so its unanimous that wr's aren't notorious for overheating, I would understand a little heat in real rough trail conditions. i'll just hit it with the infrared thermometer under a few different conditions and post. somebody online someplace will know if she gets warm



  • Just_a_trail_rider

Posted August 21, 2014 - 07:04 AM

#16

okay so its unanimous that wr's aren't notorious for overheating, I would understand a little heat in real rough trail conditions. i'll just hit it with the infrared thermometer under a few different conditions and post. somebody online someplace will know if she gets warm

I have had this problem with a hot engine before.  Its coming back to me...

 

first check to make sure that your clutch is adjusted properly.  You need to have a little bit of free play in the lever.  I'm thinking at least 1/4 of an inch measured at the end of the lever.  This is critical to allow the plates to expand and contract.    Not having this free play will warm up the engine significantly and slowly but surely burn up your clutch plates.  It would also warm up the engine while moving.  The symptoms you describe (hot engine, while moving, near your ankle, exhaust side) sure sounds like your clutch is slipping ever so slightly.

 

Your bike is an 03.  Chances are your clutch springs are pretty worn.   They pack down after a while, become shorter, and do not apply enough pressure to the pressure plate, causing a slight slippage under load that you may not feel right away.   You need to change those springs anyway because the bike is so old.  When you pop off that clutch cover, if the clutch has been slipping, you'll smell it  (burnt eggs). 

 

You don't ride with your finger covering the clutch, do you?

 

Second thing to check is the jetting.   If its lean, it runs hotter.  But your symptoms don't sound quite like that.   But check anyway.


Edited by mauricedorris, August 21, 2014 - 07:09 AM.


  • essonlaker

Posted August 21, 2014 - 01:00 PM

#17

I have had this problem with a hot engine before.  Its coming back to me...

 

first check to make sure that your clutch is adjusted properly.  You need to have a little bit of free play in the lever.  I'm thinking at least 1/4 of an inch measured at the end of the lever.  This is critical to allow the plates to expand and contract.    Not having this free play will warm up the engine significantly and slowly but surely burn up your clutch plates.  It would also warm up the engine while moving.  The symptoms you describe (hot engine, while moving, near your ankle, exhaust side) sure sounds like your clutch is slipping ever so slightly.

 

Your bike is an 03.  Chances are your clutch springs are pretty worn.   They pack down after a while, become shorter, and do not apply enough pressure to the pressure plate, causing a slight slippage under load that you may not feel right away.   You need to change those springs anyway because the bike is so old.  When you pop off that clutch cover, if the clutch has been slipping, you'll smell it  (burnt eggs). 

 

You don't ride with your finger covering the clutch, do you?

 

Second thing to check is the jetting.   If its lean, it runs hotter.  But your symptoms don't sound quite like that.   But check anyway.

 

 

never thought to check that, thanks for the idea

 

worn springs could be a reason for slippage for sure

 

and no I don't and if it causes excess heat then i'll be sure to not start riding that way



  • ThumpMe

Posted August 21, 2014 - 08:24 PM

#18

 My '03 will get hot if I am not moving along at a decent pace in first gear. HAVE to keep air going through the radiators or it will boil and steam. Did this a few weeks ago when a buddy lost a GPS and we were going at a walking pace up a trail for 8-10 minutes looking for it.

 

 I added a fan I picked up off e-bay...waterproof too! It kicks butt! No worries now even while engine running and parked!

 

 You will feel heat like you mentioned as I do ride some around town with mine and with ankle high boots on it will keep your legs warm in winter and cook em in Summer! But DO get a pair of riding boots for the dirt....pricey, but WELL worth  the investment!



  • ThumpMe

Posted August 21, 2014 - 08:27 PM

#19

Oh yeah, meant to add if you think it is noisy now add a full aluminum  skid pan! With the added noise you hear off it first couple times out it will convince you it is about to blow up! The full pans sort of amplify the sound and throw it right up to you! 



  • essonlaker

Posted August 26, 2014 - 04:55 PM

#20

I used that infrared thermometer this past weekend, never saw the water pump housing get past 220 on a fairly easy ride, not a wide flat trail but not a mud hole either.

 

then I went out with riding buddies down a new trail that they wanted to see cause they ride it all winter on snowmobiles, just a total mudhole. we ended up turning around cause it got too brutal. it was getting pretty warm, but if it didn't boil on this particular trail then id say my cooling system is just fine. and by the time we got back to the cottage it was running about 220, so all is well as far as I know.

 

thanks ThumpMe for sharing your experience with fans, if I have any trouble in the future i'll check it out. not having to worry even if its parked is what i'd like, I figure your starting to do your engine no favors long before you boil over






 
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