lowering the wr450

36 replies to this topic
  • Nate_R

Posted August 24, 2004 - 09:53 AM


I'm not sure what Zip-ty has planed, but their link sounds like it only lowers the rear of the bike. I dunno bout other peoples wr450's but on mine There is NO fork ajustment available. I measured from the top of the tire to the underside of the front fender and it is right at 12".
Seeing as the fork has roughly 12" travel, I see it hard to lower the front end by moving the forks up in the clamps. The tire will hit the fender. That being said, if you only lower the rear you are going to Fock up the handeling of the bike. Although it will decsend steeper hills better, I don't think that is what people are after. I wonder what they are doing about this? Also companies like Devol that lower the bike 2" !!! How are they doing it? Unless there is something I am missing, They would have to cut your fork travel by 2" to not hit the fender and bottom tripple clamp, thus only giving you 10" or go to a 2" smaller front wheel( &%$#@!!?) :thumbsup:.

If this is the case, Bad Idea in my opinion. But maybe its worth it for shorter riders. Also you loose a lot of ground clearance when you lower the bike. For Nasty riding, logs, moab, etc. type riding the high frame clearance of the WR is second to none. Yes it is a little top heavy, but there are other ways around that. I will be shedding 30 lbs or so of weight off my WR by removing stuff and fabricating a few parts. Being 6'4" I can flat foot my wr450 with my knees slightly bent, but I know that doesn't help you guys any.
I feel for you guys. :awww: I guess I 'm just trying to say look at All aspects of this to see what is best for you. There are always compromises, just find the best one that doesn't screw up your enjoyment of riding. :devil:

  • Nate_R

Posted August 24, 2004 - 10:07 AM


Back in 2000 I had bought a new YZ426 that was to be used in both woods and track. I sent my suspension to Jeremy Wilkey at MX-Tech and he lowered it 3"'s without any cutting

Just curious.... how'd he do it? Do you only have 9" of travel now? The only way around that to keep 12" of travel, that I can see would be to cut 3" off of your fork tubes, redo the internals, and reduce your fork tubes overlap (Bad,Bad idea :devil: )
Unless, there is enough room in the top tubes to lower the fork 3" without the bottom tubes hitting the top tube caps or interfering with the internals. If he didn't cut anything like you say, I don't see how you could have more than 9" of travel by lowering the bike 3". Maybe the 3" includes lowering the seat height or sub frame. :thumbsup:

  • beezer

Posted August 24, 2004 - 10:29 AM


People lower bikes every day. Its done internally with spacers or cutting the dampening rods. Shorter people, girls, ice racers, dirt trackers love it. I think it would be a good idea to lower a WR450.

  • Nate_R

Posted August 24, 2004 - 10:40 AM


I agree that lowering a bike definately has its application, and bennefits. Not everyone needs 12" of travel. I just want to try to help people be aware of what the possible compromises could be. Some people might think they can lower the bike and it will be the same. Lessening your travel means you will have to have a stiffer spring rate to not bottom the fork out, which will GREATLY affect the bikes ride quality and capability, or keep the same spring rate and have the forks bottom out easier. Some people may not mind this, but I'm pretty sure it would be too great a compromise for aggressive riders. I could be wrong, though.

  • Indy_WR450

Posted August 24, 2004 - 12:32 PM


I cant touch the ground on my WR450 either except with the tips of my toes. But I will not reduce the suspension or clearance. I wish Yamaha would relocate the battery and lower the seat and air box within the frame for 2 or 3 inches. That would be ideal! But in nasty rocks and boulders I prefer the stock set up. If I stop I usually fall over. :thumbsup:

  • ncmountainman

Posted August 24, 2004 - 01:06 PM


kinda like the benny hill show? :thumbsup:

  • Indy_WR450

Posted August 24, 2004 - 01:32 PM


Not exactly Bob! Benny Hill falls over looking at gorgeous women. :thumbsup: :devil: I land gracefully. :awww:

  • beezer

Posted August 24, 2004 - 01:34 PM


I have learned when its going over just let it go. Not much I could do about it if I wanted to.

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  • duckboy

Posted August 24, 2004 - 05:33 PM


I'm 5'10" and I couldn't tell you how many times I fell over the first month I had my new bike. I came to the conclusion reaching for the ground was just not working,so now I just quickly let off the gas throw my weight and gun it. I haven't tipped over in three months, whipping out weeeell that's a different matter entirely. :thumbsup:

  • Nate_R

Posted August 24, 2004 - 08:56 PM


I wish Yamaha would relocate the battery and lower the seat and air box within the frame for 2 or 3 inches.

I relocated my battery...... on the garage shelf!

  • INJURY_69

Posted August 24, 2004 - 09:49 PM


I had mx tech setup my yz450f since i am so short/lightweight and i told him I'd like it an inch shorter to 1.5 in shorter.

When I got the bike back it still seemed really tall! I compared it w/ my buds 450F. I was forced to trim the seat foam....oval out the subframe...set my sag a little more...and then adjust the triple clamps. Now it is a bit better but feel like I got jipped by him.

All he told me was "the proper spring rates for your weight will make the bikes weight sit lower"

But as I investigated more I know now that you have to get shorter springs or use a spacer or cut the springs...or get a different dogbone.

I called him and told him with no success!


  • Indy_WR450

Posted August 24, 2004 - 10:18 PM


John at MX Tech does fantastic work. He rebuilds my forks and does them very well! Communication is important if you want John to do something special. He is very good at what he does. :thumbsup:

  • INJURY_69

Posted August 25, 2004 - 12:12 AM


Is MX Tech tightly networked?

I don't feel like paying more $ (100 bucks for a USED rear spring)

When I took the front forks back because they where too caddy like...I had to remind him who I was, what the bike was, what we had talked about about. He totally forgot, even via e-mails I sent. It was like this ea. time we spoke.

I don't want to go on (I can) venting...but..

I told him I ride mostly desert and single track and occasionally hit the mx track. He said he'll make her "caddie like" (as in ride like a cadillac). I am thinking cool but what about the track?

He replied "just go up on the clickers for the track"

I did just that... first lap I got medium air but landed on my front wheel (only minor) off a jump. I wasn't too endo so I wasn't worried...I've been in worse. Spongy...Boom....Pogo effect and I'm down. I go up with a hurt shoulder but no biggie and ride till close.

My surgeon thought differently....

Or maybe the worst part is paying over half a friggin grand?

Anywho my post count has been increasing lately because i'm post op from my recent slap tear repair (arthroscopy) from that crash!
:mad:ship hurts more than the crash!


  • Indy_WR450

Posted August 25, 2004 - 10:01 AM


Sorry to hear about your bad experience. Heal quickly and be back riding soon! :thumbsup:

  • dirtryder52

Posted August 25, 2004 - 10:24 AM


im only 5'6 and 15 years old i just set the sag and i can toss it around like i actually fit on it

  • condog_aus

Posted August 25, 2004 - 12:23 PM


I am 5'8" and I know these WR's are a bit tall when starting or standing, but if you have a problem riding them then you need to go to a riding school

Slide your butt cheek to one side and pick your stopping spots for comfort. If your racing get a starting block for under your foot.

Just remember if you lower it you have to stand further to the proper attack position and the position you begin standing from has significant biomechanical disadvantages compared to a higher seat position. ie: fatigue sets in earlier. Also your back will cop more of a hiding on big hits because with your legs are more bent, your body has more of a lever to slam down on the seat, thus your spine becomes your bodies shock absorber if you get slammed.

Good Luck, but I wouldn't rush into it, especially if your 5'10"

  • R_Little

Posted August 27, 2004 - 07:19 AM


I bought a second set of suspension from ebay and had it shortened by MX-Tech.

I'm not a fast guy. I have a 30" inseam and I find the reduced height (30mm) a godsend when riding your typical east coast enduro/woods ride. My confidence in rock/ log fields is way up. Mind you I'm 44 and can't afford to keep falling off the bike anymore!!

I would not jump the bike in lowered form though. I put the long stuff on for MX or deep sand. I see where you are coming from if your lowered bike is too soft for MX.

Eastcostguy, PM me if you want to try a lowered WR out before you buy.


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