Living with the WR450


17 replies to this topic
  • AFJ7732W

Posted August 01, 2008 - 11:17 AM

#1

Hey Everybody. I'm a new guy. I hate being the new guy. I've done a LOT of reading here. You guys seem to be waaaay above the average intellegence level of most of this type of site. kudos.

I'm planning on buying a left over, never used WR450in a 6-8 weeks, "if the good Lord is willing and the creek don't rise." A dirtbike is something I've wanted for a long time, but was never in the cards because other responsibilities came first. But it's going to be a reality real soon. I pay cash. I had a CR125 years ago. I currently ride a 929 on the street. I've done track days, the whole street bike thing. Anyways...

My dealer is less than 5 miles away. That's a good thing. He's into off road riding. Hare scrambles, etc. Probably hangs out here, but I don't know that last part for sure. In other words, my dealer is one of us. He'll do the free mods for me. More good stuff...

My real question is, After it's set up properly, been re-greased, jetted properly, break in valve check, How maintence intensive is a WR450? I plan on riding gravel roads, fire roads, abandoned srtip mines, some trails, some street. By dirt bike standards, I'd say medium/light duty as far as what I'm doing, but I plan on riding a lot.

Having said all that, will this engine go 10,000 miles without a rebuild? How much is a rebuild going to cost? Do I really need to change oil every other ride? Does it give you any warning before the engine lets go?

Thanks for your patience.

  • tweav

Posted August 01, 2008 - 12:36 PM

#2

I change my oil like 600 -800 miles on mine . and I changed the piston at 3500 miles. the piston and gaskets cost me like 250 bucks.

  • motoscotty

Posted August 01, 2008 - 12:43 PM

#3

Those bikes are bullet proof break it in and ride it!! I have an 08 that has been to the desert to Perris.I had to prove to a friend of mine that a bone stock wr 450 is competitive on a mx track like Perris.Although it bottomed horribly every where the power is good bone stock still has the throttle stop We did a moto he had to 5 laps in the time it took me to do 10 and he won by about 100' But the fact is they are great bikes.I wish my yz's were e-start.You will be very happy with a wr.

  • Just_a_trail_rider

Posted August 01, 2008 - 10:37 PM

#4

10K is a lot of miles for a high performance thumper. If you treat it right and stay on top of it, it may last that long or even longer.

As far a maintenance, it will require very little other than oil changes, filter cleaning, annual fork service. I actually spend more time replacing stuff that I break when I crash.

If you like getting your hands just a little dirty, then you'll be fine.

  • Fullbore4

Posted August 01, 2008 - 11:50 PM

#5

I am opposed to having a dealer do things that I can do on this type of bike...they are there to "get em out the door". I get much more satisfaction doing the stuff and knowing how it all works plus it saves money.

I wouldn't worry about a wr breaking down for several years. Oil changes are important since they only hold 1.25 quarts....I change every 200 miles and I never take the upper frame strainer out. Some won't agree, but regreasing (as you mentioned) the swingarm bearings is not needed.

Changes in how it starts or runs are tell-tale signs of for instance, valves tightening up so you don't need to fix it if it ain't broke. I check valve clearance once a year or if I have a relavent problem that crops up. I recommend MFR pro-gold chain lube after trying them all. 91 octane is fine. Get fork and shock springs ($200 total) for your weight.....stock are for 185 pounders. Read on this site about free mods and tweaks you can do on the carb. You didn''t say what year bike but 07 and newer take a little more time working on the carb.

  • Imacowboy

Posted August 02, 2008 - 02:06 AM

#6

I just bought mine used a couple weeks ago,it's an 05. There was an 06 sitting right beside it,and I actually wanted an 06 more because of the shrouds covering the fuel tank,aluminum frame ect. But the 06 was thrashed...bad. The 05 had 300 miles on it so it was a no brainer. Like you I have been reading all the posts here,as of now I am up to page 152,and I am equally impressed with the quality overall of the advice here. I came from the 2 stroke world,but after riding my WR I wont give the big thumper up,but I still am going to get a 250 2 stroke...I cant stay off the MX track at CAW...:ride:

  • AFJ7732W

Posted August 02, 2008 - 02:52 AM

#7

It's a leftover 07. If it's not there in a few weeks, I'll have to save a bit more and get an 08 or an 09. I really don't care what year, I just want unused.

Doesn't hold much oil, does it? That's why the frequent changes. 1.25 quarts, that's cool. Street bikes hold a gallon, plus filter.

I'm about 170-175 lbs without gear, so I hope the suspention is ok. I've re-done street bike suspentions, so I kind of know a little bit about that.

I'm starting to get over the shock of these things needing to be rebuilt so often. Are KTMs and Hondas the same way? I realise they're 2 different animals, but I have almost 40,000 on my 929, and engine wise,it's still perfect.

Typically, do the valve clearences grow, or diminish?

For what it's worth, I think the 07 WR450 is a beautiful machine. Looks hi quality. Almost too pretty to get muddy.

  • JSanfilippo

Posted August 02, 2008 - 04:29 PM

#8

[quote name='AFJ7732W']It's a leftover 07. If it's not there in a few weeks, I'll have to save a bit more and get an 08 or an 09. I really don't care what year, I just want unused. [/quote]
Besides BNGs and other small changes, the '07, '08, and '09 are practically the same

[quote name=']I'm about 170-175 lbs without gear' date=' so I hope the suspention is ok. I've re-done street bike suspentions, so I kind of know a little bit about that.[/quote']
Thats actually the target weight for the stock springs. Playing w/ the rebound and comp damping on both ends should be good 'nuff for aggressive woods riding. If you're track riding and hitting huge jumps I suggest a re-valve.

[quote=]
I'm starting to get over the shock of these things needing to be rebuilt so often. Are KTMs and Hondas the same way? I realise they're 2 different animals, but I have almost 40,000 on my 929, and engine wise,it's still perfect. [/quote]
Every HI-PO 4 stroke pretty much needs to be kept on top of in terms of maintenence. KTM is about on par w/ Yamaha but some hondas need more frequent service and replacement of stuff in the motor. Just depends on whether it was abused or not.

Here is a story of an '05 that spent most of its time on an MX track. It reached almost 10,000 miles before grenading (on the track). (BTW the '07+ has a revised trans and shouldn't have that problem w/ 3rd gear.
http://www.southbayr...ead.php?t=10730


[quote=]Typically, do the valve clearences grow, or diminish?

For what it's worth, I think the 07 WR450 is a beautiful machine. Looks hi quality. Almost too pretty to get muddy.[/QUOTE]

They shrink. Why? Because the face of the valve wears into the valve seat. Luckily the vendor yamaha gets its valves from uses a super durable nitride coating on its Ti valves.

  • AFJ7732W

Posted August 03, 2008 - 07:17 AM

#9

I'm learning a lot on this site. I really appreciate the time you guys took to answer a bunch of dumb questions that have probably been asked before. But it's going to be a lot of $$$, I want to be informed.

Tweav, you have stated a couple of times that you changed your piston at 3500. You thought you heard the skirt slapping. I'm not trying to be a smartass here, so bear with me. Modern street/sport bike pistons have almost no skirt. They're practically just a ring holder. They run 12:1 or better compression at 13,000 rpm for 70,000+ miles with no trouble. I'm wondering if the reason some guys rebuild these things with seemingly low mileage isn't a holdover from the days of 2 strokes or air cooled thumpers? Motorcyclists of all variety seem to be "tweakers". Is that part of it?

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  • face_plant

Posted August 04, 2008 - 08:27 AM

#10

afj i kinda agree with you
9500 b4 my first rebuild on my 05
i was getting piston slap, so in 6k more i get to replace the cylinder

o and i did notice somthing yesterday
i was running a big gun evox since day-1
it started to leak so i put on the stock one and it seems quieter
but seems to rev a little faster

  • Alternative

Posted August 05, 2008 - 03:34 AM

#11

I'm learning a lot on this site. I really appreciate the time you guys took to answer a bunch of dumb questions that have probably been asked before. But it's going to be a lot of $$$, I want to be informed.

Tweav, you have stated a couple of times that you changed your piston at 3500. You thought you heard the skirt slapping. I'm not trying to be a smartass here, so bear with me. Modern street/sport bike pistons have almost no skirt. They're practically just a ring holder. They run 12:1 or better compression at 13,000 rpm for 70,000+ miles with no trouble. I'm wondering if the reason some guys rebuild these things with seemingly low mileage isn't a holdover from the days of 2 strokes or air cooled thumpers? Motorcyclists of all variety seem to be "tweakers". Is that part of it?


I've always wondered the same thing, what makes the street bike engines last so must longer? Sure they have more oil but that's the reason we change ours so often, so that shouldn't be an issue. Could anyone shed some light?

  • Bamster

Posted August 05, 2008 - 06:09 AM

#12

I had about 13000 miles on my WR 400 when I sold it and never rebuilt it.

Still ran strong. I changed oil every 500 kls, new oil filter every 3rd change.

Shimmed valves twice. Checked valves countless times.

  • Charles De Mar

Posted August 05, 2008 - 07:38 AM

#13

I am opposed to having a dealer do things that I can do on this type of bike...they are there to "get em out the door". I get much more satisfaction doing the stuff and knowing how it all works plus it saves money.

I wouldn't worry about a wr breaking down for several years. Oil changes are important since they only hold 1.25 quarts....I change every 200 miles and I never take the upper frame strainer out. Some won't agree, but regreasing (as you mentioned) the swingarm bearings is not needed.

Changes in how it starts or runs are tell-tale signs of for instance, valves tightening up so you don't need to fix it if it ain't broke. I check valve clearance once a year or if I have a relavent problem that crops up. I recommend MFR pro-gold chain lube after trying them all. 91 octane is fine. Get fork and shock springs ($200 total) for your weight.....stock are for 185 pounders. Read on this site about free mods and tweaks you can do on the carb. You didn''t say what year bike but 07 and newer take a little more time working on the carb.


You mean like Team Bozeman? I'd rather take my bike to a carpenter for service than to team Bozeman:lol:

  • face_plant

Posted August 05, 2008 - 09:12 AM

#14

street bikes last longer because there are 2-4-6 pistons that dont run 14k rpm they are also built for longevity not raw power
larger radiators larger oil capicity
and actually ment for the street
40k on the street is equal to 5k in the dirt

  • AFJ7732W

Posted August 05, 2008 - 10:31 AM

#15

My 929 weighs 440 lbs, puts out aprox 130HP. Hop on that and tell me there's no raw power. The 929 is a sissie's bike compared to the new 1000s.

Ya know the only way to really tell how long the engine is going to last is go out and ride one til it drops. I still wonder if the guys that are rebuilding at less than 5000 miles really needed to. Built on CNC machinery, modern materials, liquid cooling... you'd think these things would be nearly maintance free and go forever.

My dad bought one of the last Honda Big Red 250 3-wheelers, way back when. That thing was lucky to get an oil change. I don't think it ever had anything done to it. It still runs like a top.

  • al m

Posted August 05, 2008 - 04:28 PM

#16

dont forget dirtbikes are constantly either on or off the gas hard, not cruising at highway speeds like the multiple cylinder street bikes are designed to do.

  • Derbo250X

Posted August 05, 2008 - 04:47 PM

#17

The other factor that people don't think of is that dirt bikes tend to eat some
dirt over time.....no matter how well you maintain them. Dirt tends to cause parts to wear much faster.......dirtbike riders who look after their bikes are accustomed to changing pistons & rings periodically.
Derik

  • AFJ7732W

Posted August 06, 2008 - 01:37 AM

#18

Ahhh, hard charging dirt eaters.....

Now that makes sence. That also makes the case for keeping an eye on the air filter.




 
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