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MidlifeCrisisGuy

When is Yamaha going to... ?

35 posts in this topic

By the introduction of the YZ250x and the FXs, we've seen that Yamaha isn't dead in the off road category.  (Unlike the other Japanese manufacturers...)

 

So I'm wondering when Yamaha is going to

 

- release a YZ/WR 350 F/X ?  A bigger cylinder and crank on the YZ250FX is all it would take.  It would be an absolute killer bike.

- drop 10 pounds from each of the bikes in their current line up, starting with the ridiculously heavy kick stand

- add a map switch to the EFI bikes

- put 6 speed transmissions in the WR and FX 450s.

- develop a footpeg mount that is position adjustable

- put larger, opaque fuel tanks on the WR and FXs, or at least offer them as an option.

 

C'mon, Yamaha.  You are this close to having a really good, competitive off road offering.   Just a little bit more effort and I won't have to buy an orange bike.  Please ?

Edited by MidlifeCrisisGuy

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Head on over to the Honda , Suz, Kawi forums and read about what they have to deal with.

 

Seriously, I get your point on most things, but I do not want to lose 10 lbs at the expense of durability/reliability.  The smallness and thinness of some parts to achieve that is just not worth it.  Look at the two strokes, they have not lost a hell of a lot of weight in the last 25 years.  You get to a point for a certain engine size and that's about it until you start cutting some corners that maybe you shouldn't.  Stats are great and all, but mostly just stats.  I guess I'm looking at it from a different standpoint in that I would rather ride out brand X from BFE than push brand Y because of corners cut to shave weight.  Some places, pushing is not an option and even walking out is questionable. 

Edited by OUTERLIMITS
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That 6th gear wont happen in the next 5 years...

:(

That's sad.  Why's that?  I would love a 6th gear.

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That's sad. Why's that? I would love a 6th gear.

I believe the concept is the bike has the same first through six overall ratios as other six speeds. The 450's have plenty of torque to pull a five speed wider ratio.

Head on over the the Honda , Suz, Kawi forums and read about what they have to deal with.

Seriously, I get your point on most things, but I do not want to lose 10 lbs at the expense of durability/reliability. The smallness and thinness of some parts to achieve that is just not worth it. Look at the two strokes, they have not lost a hell of a lot of weight in the last 25 years. You get to a point for a certain engine size and that's about it until you start cutting some corners that maybe you shouldn't. Stats are great and all, but mostly just stats. I guess I'm looking at it from a different standpoint in that I would rather ride out brand X from BFE than push brand Y because of corners cut to shave weight. Some places, pushing is not an option and even walking out is questionable.

As far as a flimsy light weight special remember your not riding a bike that usually breaks. I could likley use a lighter bike as a light rider that doesn't do triples. However there are some heavy weight thrashers and one bike must fit all. Besides I like knowing what I am riding is over engineered rather than under engineered. Edited by stevethe
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I agree that Yamaha durability is fantastic and I love it.  But all you need to do is look at a KTM and a Yamaha side by side and you start to see how KTM builds a bike that is 10 pounds lighter.   It doesn't have to be less strong.  Just compare the KTM kickstand spring to the Yamaha kick stand spring.   The Yamaha part is twice the size and weight.  Ditto for the kickstand mount.  Ditto for how the voltage regulator mounts to the front of the frame, etc.   It adds up.

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I agree that Yamaha durability is fantastic and I love it.  But all you need to do is look at a KTM and a Yamaha side by side and you start to see how KTM builds a bike that is 10 pounds lighter.   It doesn't have to be less strong.  Just compare the KTM kickstand spring to the Yamaha kick stand spring.   The Yamaha part is twice the size and weight.  Ditto for the kickstand mount.  Ditto for how the voltage regulator mounts to the front of the frame, etc.   It adds up.

Maybe why there is (was) a rubber strap to hold the kickstand up, because the spring wasn't strong enough.  Not sure about the YZ, but my reg is held on with two bolts.  What is lighter/better, zip ties or velcro?  No thanks.

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Maybe why there is (was) a rubber strap to hold the kickstand up, because the spring wasn't strong enough.  Not sure about the YZ, but my reg is held on with two bolts.  What is lighter/better, zip ties or velcro?  No thanks.

 

Look behind your regulator.   There is an entire steel mount that goes between the regulator and the frame with an extra 2 screws.  On a KTM the regulator mounts directly to the frame.  No steel mount, 2 less screws.  Simpler and a couple ounces lighter, right there.  The whole Yamaha bike line is like that when you look at it closely.   

 

For those not familiar, I removed 25 pounds from my WR.  In the process I learned a lot about making a bike lighter.

 

I ride with a whole army of KTM 250/300 XC and XCWs.  I have not seen much evidence of their bikes being fragile.

 

I think the kickstand on the KTM stays up just fine without the rubber loop.   The rubber loop is insurance.  Pretty smart.

 

FWIW, the WRs have a ton of wiring that isn't used.  Half the wires in the harness go to terminations.   The WR harness is quite big and could easily be simplified.  There is probably another pound to be saved right there.

Edited by MidlifeCrisisGuy

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Look behind your regulator.   There is an entire steel mount that goes between the regulator and the frame with an extra 2 screws.  On a KTM the regulator mounts directly to the frame.  No steel mount, 2 less screws.  Simpler and a couple ounces lighter, right there.  The whole Yamaha bike line is like that when you look at it closely.   

 

For those not familiar, I removed 25 pounds from my WR.  In the process I learned a lot about making a bike lighter.

 

I ride with a whole army of KTM 250/300 XC and XCWs.  I have not seen much evidence of their bikes being fragile.

 

I think the kickstand on the KTM stays up just fine without the rubber loop.   The rubber loop is insurance.  Pretty smart.

 

FWIW, the WRs have a ton of wiring that isn't used.  Half the wires in the harness go to terminations.   The WR harness is quite big and could easily be simplified.  There is probably another pound to be saved right there.

Nope, mine just has two bolts for the reg that go through a bracket beneath it and into the frame.  That bracket doubles as a means of holding all the wiring and cables that pass through it along side the steering stem.  I get what you are saying though, there are lots of small ways to shed some weight.

 

I have seen a number of KTM's with wheel bearings blow out, they are just not heavy duty enough for the loads they must take.  I don't like the airbox designs either that I have seen.  Too flimsy, thin plastic and poor sealing.  

 

Places where I have been I just cannot have a mechanical failure.  Some places in baja you won't see a soul for a 100 miles and a tow or push out is not always possible, much less walking out.  It's one of the risks I take every now and then despite my better judgement.  

 

On an mx track, no problem.  Remove every 3rd spoke, no airbox, replumb for one radiator, no shrouds fenders fork guards or side panels, drill holes in my axles and swingarm and bars, no estart or kickstart (push start only), bicycle tubes in the tires, take off all the discs and calipers and just drag my feet to slow down.  Kidding of course, I would never take off the front fender.  That's just going too far  ;)

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Maybe a 6th gear wouldn't fit without making the transmission weaker.  Or maybe it wasn't worth the expense to redesign.  On gearing commander, the 500EXC looks to have nice ratios.  5th on the EXC would be a little shorter than 5th on the WR and then there's a 6th.

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Nope, mine just has two bolts for the reg that go through a bracket beneath it and into the frame. 

 

If you take the regulator off, you will see what I mean.  The regulator bolts to the bracket.  Those bolts don't go into the frame.  There are another 2 bolts underneath the regulator.

 

And the bracket that the ignition coil mounts to is solid steel, about twice the size it needs to be.  It is steel because it is part of the magnetic circuit.  I cut mine in half and the bike runs great.  And moved it to where the radiator won't smash into it.  Another bonus.

 

KTMs have had some issues over the years.  But the new ones seem to be pretty good.   And we ride way deep in the forest.  On Saturday one of the (non KTM) bikes quit and it took us the better part of 5 hours to get it out.  The owner considered a helicopter.  So I know first hand what happens when things quit in the backcountry.

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Look behind your regulator.   There is an entire steel mount that goes between the regulator and the frame with an extra 2 screws.  On a KTM the regulator mounts directly to the frame.  No steel mount, 2 less screws.  Simpler and a couple ounces lighter, right there.  The whole Yamaha bike line is like that when you look at it closely.   

 

For those not familiar, I removed 25 pounds from my WR.  In the process I learned a lot about making a bike lighter.

 

I ride with a whole army of KTM 250/300 XC and XCWs.  I have not seen much evidence of their bikes being fragile.

 

I think the kickstand on the KTM stays up just fine without the rubber loop.   The rubber loop is insurance.  Pretty smart.

 

FWIW, the WRs have a ton of wiring that isn't used.  Half the wires in the harness go to terminations.   The WR harness is quite big and could easily be simplified.  There is probably another pound to be saved right there.

You might get one or two pounds fooling around with the new WR. Other than a titanium pipe and lithium ion battery.

I do a pipe and a battery and enjoy riding a reliable bike with the proper accessories on it.

Many of those connectors are because the WR's are street bikes in other countries.

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Frans Verhoeven, who done quite a few dakar races told me that they (yamaha netherlands) prefer a lead based battery for a lighter lithium ion battery, due to the fact that the discharge and power delivery on the (yz) injection system is (more??)reliable and linear than a ion based battery..

On the other hand I had a ion battery on my ape rxv450 which ran great and never gave any issues... (and was really light)

I guess choice of battery depends on how and where you ride and what you prefer..

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Nope, mine just has two bolts for the reg that go through a bracket beneath it and into the frame. 

 

Here is the bracket behind the voltage regulator.  Its steel.

 

20140827_221928.jpg

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Here is the bracket behind the voltage regulator.  Its steel.

 

attachicon.gif20140827_221928.jpg

Yeah, I took your word for it.  I did not take mine off, but it did not look like anything would or should be underneath it.  Does not make that much sense,  I would have probably just bolted it directly to the frame as the mount did, with maybe a couple spacers or rubber washers under it.  

 

What I don't like however is manufacturers that try and get  too creative to save an ounce or two.  I have a friend with a Husky 310 and the battery under the seat is not secured by anything other than the seat itself.  In a perfect world it should be enough, but we don't live in that world and overall it's a flawed design.

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- release a YZ/WR 350 F/X ?  A bigger cylinder and crank on the YZ250FX is all it would take.  It would be an absolute killer bike.

 

This is the bike I am waiting for. Hopefully it will be available by around 2021 which is about when I will be thinking of buying my next new bike.

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I agree that Yamaha durability is fantastic and I love it.  But all you need to do is look at a KTM and a Yamaha side by side and you start to see how KTM builds a bike that is 10 pounds lighter.   It doesn't have to be less strong.  Just compare the KTM kickstand spring to the Yamaha kick stand spring.   The Yamaha part is twice the size and weight.  Ditto for the kickstand mount.  Ditto for how the voltage regulator mounts to the front of the frame, etc.   It adds up.

 

A post 2011 KTM is lighter by $50 per pound.

If you want lighter weight, you have to pay for it.

 

Your assumption that the KTM is not 'less strong' is erroneuos.

 

Granted, the Yamaha's engineer sometimes border on Tractor level of build quality, but for most of us who actually ride agressively, this is not a bad thing.

 

The problem with KTM's ( accept 2016 sxf models) is that they flex like crazy, the forks are beyond substandard, and the power delivery is soft and not consistent (even after sustantial work).

They are 125cc sized bikes, no matter which engine.

They do not have torque curves like the asian bikes. Much peaky-er.

 

They also don't last nearly as long. 

 

You can get 350 hours on a Yamaha piston, and 750 hours on the crank.

 

A KTM is more like 150 and 350.  This is not my opinion. Just go into the KTM forum and you will see the 50-75 hour piston life for hard riders.

 

So, the Yamaha is the bargain, by a substantial amount; a better value for long life, handling, and suspension. 

 

Who cares if it does not have a 6th gear (are you going to go 85 mph every ride ?) or that it weighs 16lbs more (of which 9+ can be removed quite easily).

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What I don't like however is manufacturers that try and get too creative to save an ounce or two. I have a friend with a Husky 310 and the battery under the seat is not secured by anything other than the seat itself. In a perfect world it should be enough, but we don't live in that world and overall it's a flawed design.

Explain... If the seat would fly off God forbid the battery wouldn't be secured

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Explain... If the seat would fly off God forbid the battery wouldn't be secured

Yes, but also he has found it to be a bugger just to get the seat on right sometimes due to the contact it makes with the battery.   What would it cost, a couple of ounces for some kind of strap on the battery?  I'm all for shaving weight, but only if it makes sense.  As noted above with the Yami regulator, it bolts to a bracket, which in turn is bolted to the frame.  Makes sense to bolt directly to the frame instead of having the bracket, but I do believe the bracket also acts as a retainer to hold the electrical wires passing by the left side of the steering head so I kind of get why they did that. 

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Looking at that bracket if the reg bolted directly too the frame it would interfere with the bearing's.

Things are engineered for a reason. Trust me when I say if they can save $0.50c per bike by removing a bracket they will.

Using KTM kickstands as a comparison is a joke. I have found 3 of them laying in the middle of the trail in the last year.

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