Gearing options for a 2003 WR450

7 replies to this topic
  • Rocky739

Posted October 08, 2012 - 01:12 PM


OK, I know this is a little like asking which girl is prettiest but here goes anyways..

I Have been riding my 2003 WR450 with the stock gearing (14-50) and IMHO it sucks! 1st gear is so low it is useless and second is too tall in really bad sections so I have been abusing the clutch like no tomorrow but as soon as the trail opens up a bit 2nd is too low and I'm revving the engine like a 250 and dealing with too much engine braking, or lugging 3rd.

I am thinking gear the bike up so 1st is rideable and it would be awesome if 2nd would be slightly lower than where 3rd is now so that I could run 2nd most of the time in the woods and have a true 1st gear for tech sections (I'm constantly going between 2nd and 3rd now).

I looked and couldn't find much on here that I thought applied to my situation. What would be awesome is about a half a gear jump up, 2nd becomes 2.5 etc.. My question is will one tooth on the rear make enough of a change (49) or should I go for a 48 rear or should I go up one tooth in the front (15) and if I do that is there enough clearance?

I ride mostly tight eastern rooty, rocky stuff (KY, WV, OH) and enjoy AA, black diamond type trail..

As always thanks in advance for any input.

  • MANIAC998

Posted October 08, 2012 - 05:05 PM


There is enough clearance to go all the way up to a 16 front, if you remove the chain guard, so a 15 fits easily even with the guard. One tooth difference isn't much on the rear sprocket, but it is noticeable. I went the other way, and geared it down to 14/51 and just don't use 1st for anything except the truely nasty stuff. I guess to each his own.

  • Rocky739

Posted October 08, 2012 - 05:39 PM


Hmm. I'll try a 15 front. I'd be scared to go lower and use 1st as a throwaway as I was ringing it pretty good in fifth to keep up with my brother and his land speed record beta this weekend on the roads.

  • MANIAC998

Posted October 09, 2012 - 02:52 AM


Ah! Roads!! For sure I wouldn't use that gearing for any kind of road riding. For Baja, we go 15/50 and don't have any issues what so ever. This is with a Rekluse auto-clutch though, so that helps.

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  • Rocky739

Posted October 09, 2012 - 03:07 AM


Thanks maniac, as always you are the man. I'll get a 15 tooth ordered before my trip to Hatfield McCoy in a couple weeks.

  • miweber929

Posted October 09, 2012 - 04:07 AM


I've been running 15/49 on my 04 for several years now and it's just about the perfect DS setup which still will crawl at a walking pace in first if needed.

  • bg10459

Posted October 09, 2012 - 04:40 AM


I like 15/48 on my 03. It spelled the end for my long overdue clutch, but otherwise a good combo for dual sport.

  • Rocky739

Posted October 09, 2012 - 07:59 PM


Ordered a cheap 15 tooth to try. I'll see how that does for now and as soon as the stock rear wears out I will probably adjust it down a tooth or two..

Thanks for the great advice!!!


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