Thoughts on gearing down for off road riding


25 replies to this topic
  • Juiceman

Posted May 12, 2005 - 10:33 PM

#1

My 05 WR450 is stock with 14/50 final drive. Some guys I ride with have YZ450s. All have dropped the front sprocket to a 13 making the final drive on the YZ's 13/48. It has been suggested from these guys that i drop my front sprocket 1 tooth. Now my thinking is the WR has a weighted flywheel and a different primary ratio in the trany than the YZ's I am guessing that even with the YZ's 13 front sprocket my stock WR geared lower when you factor in the trany's primary ratio. On top of that the WR has a weighted flywheel. So what if any advantage will I gain by dropping my front sprocket to a 13. I am wondering if it would actually cause me traction problems. I do not have a stalling problem on steep climbs with the stock gearing. I do take what these guys say seriously as they are better riders than I am. They say it will make the bike climb better. However I have to wonder if they just don't understand the differences between the 05WR and the YZ's. I feel the bike climbs good as is and any time I have a problem it is most likely do to my skill level. Give me your thoughts on this.

  • Hamish

Posted May 12, 2005 - 11:43 PM

#2

[quote name='I am wondering if it would actually cause me traction problems. I do not have a stalling problem on steep climbs with the stock gearing. I do take what these guys say seriously as they are better riders than I am. They say it will make the bike climb better. However I have to wonder if they just don't understand the differences between the 05WR and the YZ's. I feel the bike climbs good as is and any time I have a problem it is most likely do to my skill level. Give me your thoughts on this.[/QUOTE']

No gearing will cause traction problems, it all comes back to throttle control. With a 13 up front you will be able to go up hills at a lower rpm, maybe even using one gear taller. The downside is that you'll find yourself changing gears more. If you are happy with your bike the way it is, leave it alone :) Also, chain wear will be slightly accelerated with a 13T front sprocket.

  • BajaFool

Posted May 13, 2005 - 10:44 AM

#3

I went to a 52 tooth rear sprocket on my 2003 WR450F, because it is easier on the chain than a 13 tooth front sprocket. Also, 13 teeth in the front means that you lose too much top speed. I can climb any trail that i have the courage to ride and I am still able to cruise at 60-70 MPH on dirt roads with 52 teeth in the rear. Remember, dropping one tooth in the front is equal to increasing approx. 4 teeth in the rear. Buy the Yamaha rear sprocket, it is cheaper than after market and wears like iron. :)

  • beakr

Posted May 15, 2005 - 12:22 PM

#4

I went to a 52 tooth rear sprocket on my 2003 WR450F, because it is easier on the chain than a 13 tooth front sprocket. Also, 13 teeth in the front means that you lose too much top speed. I can climb any trail that i have the courage to ride and I am still able to cruise at 60-70 MPH on dirt roads with 52 teeth in the rear. Remember, dropping one tooth in the front is equal to increasing approx. 4 teeth in the rear. Buy the Yamaha rear sprocket, it is cheaper than after market and wears like iron. :)

BajaFool, on my '04 with stock gearing, 1st gear is so low that it is almost unusable in anything but the slowest of tight single-tracks, or starting out on a steep up-hill. Did going to a 52 rear make a big difference? Is your first gear too low now?

  • Domenic_WRF

Posted May 15, 2005 - 02:16 PM

#5

52 tooth :) I can idle over anything without stalling, made third usable in the tight woods..but now I'm thinking of a 15 front for the desert.. :D never satisfied :D my bike has 600 miles on it now..seems like it has allot more power and the 50 would have been fine.. :)

  • simon@vic

Posted May 15, 2005 - 05:34 PM

#6

it depends what you are riding. where i ride you need 13/50 or 14/53 for the super tight trials stuff. it also make 2nd gear perfect for single track unless ints insane. having said that, when riding home on a logging road or on the highway, 5th gear is too low. WRs need a 6th gear!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Dan_from_HB

Posted May 15, 2005 - 08:54 PM

#7

My 05 WR450 is stock with 14/50 final drive. Some guys I ride with have YZ450s. All have dropped the front sprocket to a 13 making the final drive on the YZ's 13/48. It has been suggested from these guys that i drop my front sprocket 1 tooth. Now my thinking is the WR has a weighted flywheel and a different primary ratio in the trany than the YZ's I am guessing that even with the YZ's 13 front sprocket my stock WR geared lower when you factor in the trany's primary ratio. On top of that the WR has a weighted flywheel. So what if any advantage will I gain by dropping my front sprocket to a 13. I am wondering if it would actually cause me traction problems. I do not have a stalling problem on steep climbs with the stock gearing. I do take what these guys say seriously as they are better riders than I am. They say it will make the bike climb better. However I have to wonder if they just don't understand the differences between the 05WR and the YZ's. I feel the bike climbs good as is and any time I have a problem it is most likely do to my skill level. Give me your thoughts on this.


Depends on where you ride, but I do lots of club enduros, and many of my playriding buddies and I love tight, technical stuff and climbing around in the mountains in the summer. I used stock 14/50 until a few months ago.

I needed new sprockets & chain, couldn't get the 50, so I took a 51. It's fine, but I wouldn't want any lower gearing.

  • Indy_WR450

Posted May 15, 2005 - 09:13 PM

#8

it depends what you are riding. where i ride you need 13/50 or 14/53 for the super tight trials stuff. it also make 2nd gear perfect for single track unless ints insane. having said that, when riding home on a logging road or on the highway, 5th gear is too low. WRs need a 6th gear!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Ditto ! :D
I use 13/50 for tight technical, 14/50 for normal riding and 15/50 for high speed desert all with the same chain. In real nasty slow technical riding the 13/50 will save you clutch hand from overworking and if you are tired from over stalling. :)

  • AUS_WR450

Posted May 15, 2005 - 11:16 PM

#9

Indy,

As you change your front sprocket a fair bit, do you still you use the flat metal washer with the fold over tabs, to prevent to the nut from loosening?
I would imagine that the metal would fatigue after a while of constant bending, and snap off the tabs. I am thinking of using Loctite and the appropriate torque setting.

Nigel

  • Indy_WR450

Posted May 16, 2005 - 05:30 AM

#10

Hey Nigel things are cooling down down under. Good time to ride with the winter coming. :)

I reuse the metal washer about 4 or 5 times and then place a new one. Since they are steel they hold up to the bending pretty good. :D

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  • Rider1958

Posted May 16, 2005 - 06:51 AM

#11

I use 12/51 on my WR426. I carry along a 15-tooth front (and tools to change it) to switch to when I need to road ride.

  • JeffWR

Posted May 16, 2005 - 07:48 AM

#12

Ditto ! :)
I use 13/50 for tight technical, 14/50 for normal riding and 15/50 for high speed desert all with the same chain. In real nasty slow technical riding the 13/50 will save you clutch hand from overworking and if you are tired from over stalling. :)



Hey Indy, how many chain links do you have to be able to get all 3 countershaft sprockets to work?

Thanks again for all your contributions to this forum, Jeff :D

  • Indy_WR450

Posted May 16, 2005 - 01:45 PM

#13

114 links will work with standard tires 116 works with the Tera-flex
A half link would be ideal but they dont make them for motorcycle chains. :)

  • Dan_Lorenze

Posted May 16, 2005 - 02:32 PM

#14

Ditto ! :)
I use 13/50 for tight technical, 14/50 for normal riding and 15/50 for high speed desert all with the same chain. In real nasty slow technical riding the 13/50 will save you clutch hand from overworking and if you are tired from over stalling. :)


I totally agree.... I keep a 15 counter in my tool box and use it when I'm riding fast desert stuff and use the 14 for everything else. If I were to ride with torturechambers and plan on carrying my bike all day I would go to a 13 counter... Get the motor to work for you in the right places...

After a while the counter sproket washer does get beat up, I just keep bending a new part of the washer until there's no more material to bend, then I'll buy a new one.... I wouldn't locktite it.. Just my .02

Dan :D

  • AUS_WR450

Posted May 17, 2005 - 03:36 PM

#15

Hey Nigel things are cooling down down under. Good time to ride with the winter coming. :)

I reuse the metal washer about 4 or 5 times and then place a new one. Since they are steel they hold up to the bending pretty good. :D



Gidday Indy,

Yeah the weather is getting nice and cool now. The temp is in the low 20's ( whatever that is in farenheight) in Sydney. Maybe time for me to have my first attempt at re-jetting for the conditions :)

My sprocket lock washer is cactus. I have ordered a new one from the dealer.
The cost.... AUD$9.50 :D

Whilst on the topic of the lock washer, what is the trick to bending over the tab? I tried to get a screwdriver blade in behind it, once I'd tightened the nut, but all I got, was my dogs wondering what I was cursing at. Do you have to do it with the chain off?

regards,

Nigel

  • Hamish

Posted May 18, 2005 - 04:14 AM

#16

when you get your new washer you will notice it isnt flat. There is a small section with a slight bend on it which allows you to get a screwdriver head under it. When you get it bent about 1/2 way up, get out the multiprips and squash it over, with the other jaw of the multigrips on the opposite flat. Simply put a slight bend in the washer before you do the nut up. Somehow I once forgot to bend up the lock tab, a month or so later I was changing the output shaft seal :)

  • daytripper63

Posted May 18, 2005 - 07:51 PM

#17

when using rear 52 did anyone slot the bolt holes on rear chain guide to lower guide?

  • dirtstiff

Posted May 18, 2005 - 08:03 PM

#18

Slot the guide with 52 rear? I run 14/52 and love the torque, but have had to make no mod. for the 52.. Thanks, Jim.

  • AUS_WR450

Posted May 18, 2005 - 09:01 PM

#19

when using rear 52 did anyone slot the bolt holes on rear chain guide to lower guide?


Nah, it's not necessary. I too am running 14/52 with the standard chain on my 04 wr450. It will bring the rear tyre pretty close to the swingarm though.

I am gonna try 13/52 next in combination with a Dunlop trials tyre. It will be non-stop wheelies for me. :)

  • phat_450f

Posted May 18, 2005 - 11:09 PM

#20

just make sure you dont bend it in the same place it was bent before. I weakens the metal alot bending it over and over in the same spot.




 
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