05 WR450 - suspension upgrades (DIY?)


23 replies to this topic
  • Snapper

Posted August 10, 2006 - 04:19 AM

#1

Evening all.

I recently spent some time cruising the suspension forum looking at options to work with my suspension - 05 WR450

I am running it stock and after working with the clickers its ok but I reckon it could be better.....

theres not really anything wrong with them - i just want to fiddle and make them better.

Like I say I have read some interesting stuff but not learnt much that will help me.

I weigh around 200 pounds geared up and ride mainly open trails with a little tight stuff - lots of whoops and bumps and the occasional enduro or desert race (sand is common).

What have you guys done to your WR's?

What parts with what results?

I have worked on forks, seals, valves etc so am looking for a few ideas which will improve them.

thanks

  • clark4131

Posted August 10, 2006 - 05:47 AM

#2

New springs front and back, and some quality fork oil made a world of difference for me...SC

  • Snapper

Posted August 10, 2006 - 07:30 PM

#3

thanks - I think the springs are in the right range

i am interested in peoples experiance with shim stacks & valves.

has nobody else modded their suspension? (or had it modded - what did they do?).

cheers.

  • pkcof

Posted August 10, 2006 - 09:09 PM

#4

All i did on my '05 was to change the fork oil to a good quality - Motul 5wt. I did notice that the stock fork oil seemed to be cheap quality and also that the level of oil was not the same in each fork. After draining the stock stuff and replacing it with the motul (at an even level) it worked much smoother. A friend of mine removed 5 shims and raised the oil level slightly with great results. The fork starts to work earlier, progresses firmly during mid-stroke and isn't rock hard at full comp - it also gives the clickers more range of adjustment. I am still debating weather to go to that level next time i do a fork oil change - i'll have to ride his a few more times to be 100% convinced that it's needed for me ... hope this helps - btw, 185lbs loaded and ready to ride here !!

  • clark4131

Posted August 11, 2006 - 08:21 AM

#5

thanks - I think the springs are in the right range...


IMHO, you need to upgrade to accomodate your weight. Go to racetech and use their spring calculator. I'd bet you could go with the .48 fork springs and a 5.6 or 5.8 shock spring. It'll be like night and day...SC

  • Asgeir

Posted August 11, 2006 - 01:22 PM

#6

Put RaceTech Goldvalves in and exchange springs for your correct weight if you need to.

I did this and the bike is totally different, smooth but still stiff.

I used the setup given by RaceTech for my skill level, type of riding and my weight.

Have not changed a thing since, suspension is great.

Bought the whole front and rear springs and valves from TT store at very good price !

  • motoscotty

Posted August 11, 2006 - 05:01 PM

#7

I had enzo do mine and it is perfect like all of there work, It work similiar to my 06 yzf go with enzo..

  • Snapper

Posted August 12, 2006 - 01:28 AM

#8

IMHO, you need to upgrade to accomodate your weight. Go to racetech and use their spring calculator. I'd bet you could go with the .48 fork springs and a 5.6 or 5.8 shock spring. It'll be like night and day...SC


thanks - I don't neccesarily disagree - I guess I was trying to find out about things other than springs - I pretty much understand them and will be spending more time on the racetech site - its the impact of changing valves, removing shims etc I am trying to understand.

info from racetech: -----

Forks:
Type of Riding: Desert / Enduro / Trail
Rider Weight: 80 kg
Recommended Spring Rate: 0.456 kg/mm (use closest available)
Stock Fork Spring Rate (measured): .460 kg/mm (stock)

Shock:
Type of Riding: Desert / Enduro / Trail
Rider Weight: 80 kg
Recommended Spring Rate: 5.33 kg/mm (use closest available)
Stock Shock Spring Rate (measured): 5.3 kg/mm (stock)

this tells me my springs are not too bad (doesn't it?) - but YES I could change them.

(my gear weighs about 7.5kgs and my camelback/tools about 5 but racetech calc asks for "without gear" so I assume it allows for it?)

  • Snapper

Posted August 12, 2006 - 01:32 AM

#9

All i did on my '05 was to change the fork oil to a good quality - Motul 5wt. I did notice that the stock fork oil seemed to be cheap quality and also that the level of oil was not the same in each fork. After draining the stock stuff and replacing it with the motul (at an even level) it worked much smoother. A friend of mine removed 5 shims and raised the oil level slightly with great results. The fork starts to work earlier, progresses firmly during mid-stroke and isn't rock hard at full comp - it also gives the clickers more range of adjustment. I am still debating weather to go to that level next time i do a fork oil change - i'll have to ride his a few more times to be 100% convinced that it's needed for me ... hope this helps - btw, 185lbs loaded and ready to ride here !!


agree on the better oil

if you increase the oil level - you reduce the "air spring" (air compresses / oil doesn't) - this make the fork start to work earlier?

what impact does removing the shim have? - changes the characteristics of the stroke?

thanks - this is the stuff I want to learn about.

  • boompy

Posted August 12, 2006 - 09:51 PM

#10

I still think getting the correct springs for your weight would be the best. :thumbsup:

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  • pkcof

Posted August 13, 2006 - 12:19 AM

#11

yep - correct springs first ...and once you have them the next logical step would be valving

  • Snapper

Posted August 13, 2006 - 02:29 AM

#12

I still think getting the correct springs for your weight would be the best. :thumbsup:


all - please refer to the next post and note that this person "boompy" is a clown who I know well - he only posted this to stir up the fact that no-one has answered my question.

  • Snapper

Posted August 13, 2006 - 02:32 AM

#13

yep - correct springs first ...and once you have them the next logical step would be valving


I hope you are joking? have you read the post? If you have think long and hard cos you have demonstrated exactly what snapperhead racing is all about.

my oil is good quality - I can work out my springs - I want to know how valving and shims impact the fork - is it that complex?

"logical step is valving"..... why do you say this..... what impact will valving have.......

dont post if you have nothing to say.

snapperheads everywhere :thumbsup:

info from mx-tech:

Stock Spring Rates:
Fork: 0.46 kg/mm
Shock: 5.3 kg/mm
Recommended Spring Rates:
Fork: 0.45 kg/mm
Shock: 5.4 kg/mm
Recommended Springs:

amazing - even they think my springs are pretty close - what would they know (perhaps I should take my damper off?). :ride:

  • ferguscawley

Posted August 13, 2006 - 10:15 AM

#14

Not wanting to hijack your thread Snapper, but I am in a similar position to you.

I bought an 8 week old WR450 (06) last week. I ride mainly rocky, rutted trails full of roots and loose rocks. I have dropped the bike so many times it is not funny. I am not a newbie rider by any means so it is not down to my riding style. The front seems very 'skitty' - non stable. It washes out on corners with no warning whatsoever. My XR440 never had these probs. I weigh about 210 - little more fully kitted.
Rear sag is 105 mm - fine.
I have tried different combinations of fornt compression and rebound and settings and I still am not happy.
I have ordered 0.48kg springs for the front based upon info on the racetec website. They have not arrived yet so I am still on standard springs.
My question is this - should I go for 2.5wt or 5 wt fork oil when I replace the springs ? - and what is the best airgap to use with say 5wt oil ?. I want a supple fork that will not wash out or slap side to side too easily when hitting rocks. (I run 12 psi front tyre pressure). I don't do many jumps sop don't need a motocross set-up - just a nice comlpliant supple front with good corner stability.

Thanks

Fergus

  • Just_a_trail_rider

Posted August 13, 2006 - 02:46 PM

#15

Not wanting to hijack your thread Snapper, but I am in a similar position to you.

I bought an 8 week old WR450 (06) last week. I ride mainly rocky, rutted trails full of roots and loose rocks. I have dropped the bike so many times it is not funny. I am not a newbie rider by any means so it is not down to my riding style. The front seems very 'skitty' - non stable. It washes out on corners with no warning whatsoever. My XR440 never had these probs. I weigh about 210 - little more fully kitted.
Rear sag is 105 mm - fine.
I have tried different combinations of fornt compression and rebound and settings and I still am not happy.
I have ordered 0.48kg springs for the front based upon info on the racetec website. They have not arrived yet so I am still on standard springs.
My question is this - should I go for 2.5wt or 5 wt fork oil when I replace the springs ? - and what is the best airgap to use with say 5wt oil ?. I want a supple fork that will not wash out or slap side to side too easily when hitting rocks. (I run 12 psi front tyre pressure). I don't do many jumps sop don't need a motocross set-up - just a nice comlpliant supple front with good corner stability.

Thanks

Fergus



Your story is exactly like mine. Except last year, it was me who bought a used 3 month old 05 wr450. I found it very hard to handle and busted myself up really bad on a front end washout.

I contemplated selling it and going with a wr250f, but my fellow tt'rs gave me some tough love. They told me to slow down and get the suspension done. They were right.

I recently ordered the correct springs for my weight (210 also .48kg and 5.6kg) and put them in in a couple of hours. Then I set the sag to about 98-100. I took it on its first full ride today and the bike did exactly what I told it to do.

As a matter of fact, the f^#king thing turned and went exactly where I told it to. No front end washouts, no sliding rear tires. It was great.

So, get the springs, get them installed, get your chasis setup correctly, and then take if for a ride and play with your clickers until your bike runs well and tracks straight.

Come back AFTER you have done these things.

  • Snapper

Posted August 13, 2006 - 03:30 PM

#16

Not wanting to hijack your thread Snapper, but I am in a similar position to you.

Rear sag is 105 mm - fine.
I have tried different combinations of fornt compression and rebound and settings and I still am not happy.
I have ordered 0.48kg springs for the front based upon info on the racetec website. They have not arrived yet so I am still on standard springs.
My question is this - should I go for 2.5wt or 5 wt fork oil when I replace the springs ? - and what is the best airgap to use with say 5wt oil ?. I want a supple fork that will not wash out or slap side to side too easily when hitting rocks. (I run 12 psi front tyre pressure).
Thanks

Fergus


without being an expert - I have experianced similar problems but also been able to sort them out and make my 450 and past WR's very rideable (incidently without changing springs -even though I weighed 40pounds more 6 months ago).

certainly the stiffer front springs will help.

a lot of it can be balancing front clickers and back clickers - one cuase of washout I have experianced is too fast rear rebound and too little compression on the fork - bike sort of rides out from under itself causing the wheel to wash - slow the rear rebound 2 clicks while stiffening front compression 2 - see if it balances out a bit.

i use a zip ty on the fork to see how much travel I am using & get someone to ride next to you and watch or video you so you can see what the bike is doing - is the front rebounding too quick? rear?

when I was overweigth compared to my springs i'd be using 5wt oil a little above the standard height

good luck.

  • ferguscawley

Posted August 14, 2006 - 06:37 AM

#17

Thanks Guys

I installed the upgraded springs this morning. New fork oil (5wt) set at 129mm air gap.
Haven't had the chance to test it properly but it does feel a bit better so far (just riding over some rutted grass near my workshop).
Will let you know how it goes when I get out in the woods Thursday evening.

Ferg

  • pkcof

Posted August 14, 2006 - 06:35 PM

#18

hey snapper, calm down - 'boompy' is a clown ? ... like i'm supposed to know this ?
stir up the pot ? - well he got you going
ok, i checked with the guys that made the mods to the forks and this is what they did...
if you decide to do it then fine (i know that they were very happy with the results !!)

drain old oil (whatever it is?)
flush a couple of times with auto transmission fluid - yes, transmission fluid !
remove 5 shims from the stack (this gives the clickers more range to make a difference)
fill with auto transmission fluid (120mm air gap)
eg. if your compression clickers were 0 + 6 clicks before then go another 4~6 clockwise and try the difference
as i said, my mates were very happy with the results and the seals have never even wept since - the owner of the bike swears by his front suspension now and really pushes his bike on the tight stuff with more confidence than before
if you decide to go this way, please post your results here cause i'm sure that others would be interested in this option
my $0.02c

  • Snapper

Posted August 15, 2006 - 07:21 PM

#19

hey snapper, calm down - 'boompy' is a clown ? ... like i'm supposed to know this ?


you don't know he's a clown - that is why I told you!

I asked a question about experiances with shims and valves - people including yourself kept telling get my springs right :thumbsup:

Boompy stirred the pot by repaeating the same irrelevant answer.. :applause: ..he is definately a clown but a clown I will have a beer with tonight and he certainly didn't get me worked up.

moving on..........

thanks for the info - I definately won't be putting trans fluid in there but I can only guess that it is cheaper than fork oil with similar viscosity?

The question to ask would be what viscosity was the trans fluid compared to fork oil - 2.5w, 5w, 10w etc.

I have found quite a bit of info and will be fiddling soon. :ride:

  • pkcof

Posted August 15, 2006 - 08:47 PM

#20

Hi Snapper.
The price of trans fluid isn't the reason it's used in forks - the local Yamaha workshop has also heard of it being used. Trans fluid is designed and formulated to work evenly at pressure and temperature changes in a transmission whilst lubricating it. You may be surprised to hear that a few people are using it with great results ...
I think i'll start a thread to see what kind of feedback there is on this topic and how popular it is becoming




 
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