How important is it to have the spark plug gap to spec in regards to performance?
Not sure on this bike,but an old girlfriend had a car that would pop and backfire thru the throttlebody I re-gapped the plugs and problem went away . This happened numerous times (glad that car saw a small collision that ended its life)!
I haven't checked my plug gap and haven't noticed any thing wrong it still should be checked though.
Its fairly critical, but you can be close and it will work perfectly. If its too narrow, you will have a small spark, low power. A wide gap will generate higher voltage to jump the gap, but the system was designed for "so much" and excessive will result in missfire under loads and maybe even leaks when an alternate path becomes easier.
I only check the gap if I drop the plug on the floor
I set the plug gap on my '02 WRF at .034". Right out of the box its smaller than the factory range of .028" - .032". Better to be a couple thousandths over than under.
The Yamaha manual I have says .024"
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