Honda VS Yamaha (Quality)


13 replies to this topic
  • DesertRacer2

Posted September 24, 2007 - 04:49 PM

#1

I have had Honda's most of my life. I have had CR250's, 500's, and my last one was a XR650. I have always loved the quality and reliability. I purchased my first new Yamaha YZ450F last November and while its a great bike, I have had small issues with it. I recently had the fork seals and steering bearings go out. Now while I know this is completely normal for a dirt bike and can be considered normal maintenance, I never had any problems whatsoever with any of my Honda's. I have always thought and read that Honda and Yamaha are extremely close in build quality. Is this true? I know both companies are far above Kawasaki, I have pushed many of those things out of the desert. Is it a fact that Honda may be a step above Yamaha, or am I just biased due to all my years on a Honda?

  • matts06yzf

Posted September 24, 2007 - 05:25 PM

#2

Go get ya a New Honda 450 and ride it hard and then come back and tell us:busted: . I have 2 crs in my garage now and they have half the hours my 06 yz has and the problems wouldnt fit on this page. I like honda actually have a rubicon 4x4,and a cr 80 for my gf, but not going through the top ends and valves with there 450s. I have seen to many buddies missing time because valves are backordered etc, and hell mine have never moved.:thumbsup:

  • JSanfilippo

Posted September 24, 2007 - 09:22 PM

#3

I have had Honda's most of my life. I have had CR250's, 500's, and my last one was a XR650. I have always loved the quality and reliability. I purchased my first new Yamaha YZ450F last November and while its a great bike, I have had small issues with it. I recently had the fork seals and steering bearings go out. Now while I know this is completely normal for a dirt bike and can be considered normal maintenance, I never had any problems whatsoever with any of my Honda's. I have always thought and read that Honda and Yamaha are extremely close in build quality. Is this true? I know both companies are far above Kawasaki, I have pushed many of those things out of the desert. Is it a fact that Honda may be a step above Yamaha, or am I just biased due to all my years on a Honda?


Fork seals will leak if they get contaminated, using a film strip to wipe the inside of the seals will fix this.

The steering stem bearings will go out if you don't pack them with grease. There is an old joke that the guys that put these bikes together at the factory get grease from a tub, wipe it off on a rag, and then coat the bearings with a thin layer of grease. Its basically the mfgs being stingy with the grease...all the MFGs do this.

I think its just you being baised. The build quality of Yamaha and honda are really close, I just think that honda does a better job packaging all the wires and plumbing for the engine. In terms of reliability of the new 4 strokes, well thats opening up a whole different can of worms.

  • NorCal

Posted September 24, 2007 - 09:30 PM

#4

I'm not suprised that your fork seals went out. I think the stock fork seals on YZ (or Yamahas) just suck in general. Both mine and my brother's 06 YZ450 blew fork seals without that many hours on them. I had my mechanic use aftermarket seals on my bike because I went through a set of oem seals in a 3-4 rides.

  • endurodog

Posted September 24, 2007 - 10:16 PM

#5

I have Yamaha and Honda, 03 WR450, 05 CRF450 and a 06 YZ250 2 stroke. I put lots of hours on these bikes and no matter the make the fork seals will leak.

Your mistake is in getting them replaced. Learn to clean them when they leak and you will save yourself a ton of money.

I will be replacing my 05 CRF with a YZF450 later this year. After a whole list of things I had to replace, the biggest being a couple sets of valves and my Yamahas hasn't need anything like that, I'm going back to Yamaha. Just my opinion.

  • 07thommi

Posted September 24, 2007 - 10:30 PM

#6

I have had pretty equal luck with both Honda and Yamaha. I had better luck with the older Honda's and have had more problems with the newer ones. As far as Yamaha I have had very good luck with all of them.

For me the deciding factor between the two was the dealer service. The local Honda dealer has screwed me and to many of my friends to make me ever want to buy another Honda.:worthy: :ride: :thumbsup: The Yamaha dealer in town has been excellent to me, and with the few problems that I have had (with my bike) they were very helpful and very quick at getting me back on the trails.:thumbsup: :thumbsup:

Personally I think that most of the newer bike are all pretty good, whether it be Honda, Yamaha, Suzuki, KTM, or even Kawasaki. So once I find the type of bike I want (2stroke or 4stroke and the size) I find out the kind of service that the dealer will provide. I am willing to sacrafice a little power or handling of my bike to get a dealer that will help me when I want to add performace parts to my bike or having the peace of mind knowing that when my bike breaks that they will be there to help me and get me back riding quickly.

Just my 2cents :bonk:

-mt-

  • 00YZ426FMRCD

Posted September 25, 2007 - 05:15 AM

#7

Is it a fact that Honda may be a step above Yamaha, or am I just biased due to all my years on a Honda?


Depends what Forum you ask the question....

Visit the ThumperTalk Store for the lowest prices on motorcycle / ATV parts and accessories - Guaranteed
  • DesertRacer2

Posted September 25, 2007 - 06:38 AM

#8

Trust me, I know how to clean fork seals with film, done it many times. These were too far gone. My only "problem" is that I should have put seal savers on from the get go.

  • endurodog

Posted September 25, 2007 - 07:01 AM

#9

Trust me, I know how to clean fork seals with film, done it many times. These were too far gone. My only "problem" is that I should have put seal savers on from the get go.


There is the chance they could have become damaged. Little back ground. I race enduros in the A class some years competing in 2 series so the bikes are getting a ton of hours. I started cleaning fork seals in 2001 after replacing a couple sets a year. Since 2001 I have replaced 1 set of fork seals, it was this year on my 05 CRF. While I have had problems with my CRF I just consider the fork seals were because of the hours and in no way do I blame Honda for the fork seals. By the way I don't run seal savers. I still own all the bikes mentioned.

  • leanin

Posted September 25, 2007 - 08:48 AM

#10

I've also been told not to expect as good of fork seal life on the newer bikes because of the large diameter of the tubes. The old non-upside down forks had smaller fork tube diameters and the seals were tighter...if the seals were as tight on a large diameter fork, there would be too much stiction. I don't know whether that's true, but, it sounds reasonable.

  • KTM303

Posted September 25, 2007 - 11:43 AM

#11

If you want build quality that is awesome look at a KTM 450 SX-F great all round quality, polished hubs, brembo brakes ect. That said Yamaha is a great all round package of reliability, minimal wrench time and performance not the best just the best all round average. Remember Japanese philosophy is based on cost, they make it as good as it needs to be at the right price and not one bit more. Austrians build it to the best of their ability regardless of cost but occasionally don't get the engineering sorted as well as the Japs. Bit like BMW vs Toyota is ktm vs japan. Boils down to what you want. Hondas are the best built of the Japanese bikes but they have sacrificed durability for performance in their head design and as such aren't as good a package as Yamaha in my book unless your a sponsored rider. Yamaha is the Toyata of bikes doesn't do anything especially well but is reliable and easy to fix great traits in off road bikes.
But if KTM sort out their quirky problems I will consider buying one, you should just see the inside of their motors awesome.

  • blue9red9

Posted September 25, 2007 - 12:27 PM

#12

I own both for myself, an 06 YZ450 and an 05 CRF250R. I find them of equal quality and I've never had a problem with either after many many hours of riding and maintenance. I owned two previous YZ four strokes since 2000, great bikes just like the honda. My buddies also ride here, two of them have 06 KXF450's No problems but they came from the dealer in a little less proper shape. Great bikes though. Now my kids also both ride 85's. One on a KX85 and one on a CR85. I find that the KX65 we just came off of and the KX85 are piles of garbage compared to the CR85. Honda put more into their kids bike by far than Kawi did. We also owned a YZ80 in 2000, not up to the quality of the honda. So the adult bikes seem to be of great quality in most all the brands but the kids bikes I found are not and thats from experience in owning and maintenance and repairs.

  • grayracer513

Posted September 25, 2007 - 02:37 PM

#13

The '06 fork seal was deliberately designed to be a low drag seal. The penalty for that is that the seal is highly susceptible to just about everything that would make a seal leak.

I have replaced 6 sets of these with seal kits from MSR-HP (from the TT store), and not one has failed in over a year. Another alternative is to use the double lip seal from an '04 YZ450. Much tougher than the OEM.

  • razornpc

Posted September 26, 2007 - 06:16 AM

#14

from what i have heard from friends is that their hondas do need valve adjustments pretty regularly. me and several others that have them(yz400) havent had to adjust valves after breakin.





Related Content

Forums
Photo

2016 YZ450 by CaptainKnobby


Dirt Bike   Dirt Bike Technical Forums   Suspension
  • Hot  59 replies
Forums
Photo

Chubby dad, looking at bikes , First trip to the orange/black forum ! by Slow_ride


Dirt Bike   Make / Model Specific   KTM   250-530 EXC/MXC/SXC/XC-W/XCR-W (4-Strokes)
  • Hot  28 replies
Wiki
WR Camshaft Swap Info - last post by jamesm113

WR Camshaft Swap Info


Articles
  • 0 replies
Forums
Photo

James Stewart back on a YZ450F by YamaLink


Dirt Bike   Special Interest Forums   Pro Racing
  • Hot  47 replies
Forums
Photo

yz250x vs 450 4t comparisons (preferably desert riding) needed by JakeNorthrupYZ450F


Dirt Bike   Make / Model Specific   Yamaha   Yamaha 2-Stroke
  • 9 replies
 
x

Join Our Community!

Even if you don't want to post, registered members get access to tools that make finding & following the good stuff easier.

If you enjoyed reading about "" here in the ThumperTalk archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join ThumperTalk today!

The views and opinions expressed on this page are strictly those of the author, and have not been reviewed or approved by ThumperTalk.