Brand new WR450 hell

Well, I've been around for close to thirty years and there's not a single swear word that I've learned in that time which fits my mood right now. I just got in from what should have been my WR's first oil change with 31 miles on the clock. I say "should have" because, well, it isn't finished and I'm not sure where it's going next.

Things were going just fine until I attempted to reinstall the strainer into the frame, using the torque spec from the manual. I have three separate torque wrenches that cover separate ranges, each carefully stored in their cases and carefully tucked away in my tool chest when not in use. I used the appropriate one for this task and before I met any real resistance and before the wrench clicked.... I've now got a strainer that won't tighten down and seal to the frame nor come out when attempting to remove it. Apparently the threads let out, either on the frame itself or the other side of the nipple.

A brand new $6k+ bike that's now screwed because of this with all of 31 miles on the clock. It's still under warranty but I can't wait to hear the dealer on this one, "well, you overtorqued it", etc. I've built several cars making over 1000HP and I work on all my machines (including two Yamaha R1's) without ever having a problem...until this damned thing. It's not like I'm new to wrenching.

I'm not even sure what the dealer can do for me, even under warranty! It's not a convenient spot to weld without removing the engine...so what then? Tons of sealant and hope it holds? Risking that high revving motor? ARGH! I doubt anyone's going to volunteer to swap everything over to a new frame. I'm so pissed I'm beyond words.... :)

I feel your pain! Things go wrong but on the bright side it didnt fall out on the ride. I would think there must be an insert or helicoil made that fits it for a repair. If your dealer fixes it under warranty it would be best. Heck I would be mad just at loosing riding time. Hope you get it fixed soon.

No one that has been around ever messes with the strainer. Even though the manual tells you should its a bad idea as you have found out the hard way.

My dealer told me that he has never found shit in the strainer unless the motor has grenaded.

The threads must be stripped, maybe Yamaha may take care of itbut you know they are going to blame you.

That's a bummer man I feel bad for ya. Reminds me of the time I cross threaded a sparkplug on an old Honda Nighthawk. Hope it works out ok and doesn't cost an arm and a leg.

I stripped the nut trying to remove it on the first oil change, decided not to pursue it with the vice grips. Now I'm glad I didn't.

Sorry. Hope you get it back together soon so you can forget about it.

I use to work at a mountain bike shop and stuff like this happened alot, with the threads that are part of the frame being stripped out. What we had was a piece of aluminum that worked like a shim, and on the inside it was threaded. So we just JB welded it into the stripped hole, and it held tight. Like these other guys said, you shouldnt need to check that hardly ever, so the soft aluminum insert might last you a while. Get the exact dimensions on the size of the hole and run into a good sized bike shop and ask them if they have one that you can use.

It'll work out.

I'm sorry to here your problem, and Hope it works out. But glad you posted I'm not touching my strainer

sorry to hear of your misfortune. I smell a rat with this one. Steel fitting into steel frame.What was the torque requirement?

In my opinion, a torque wrench is for head bolts, cam caps and tripple clamps only. So many people on here strip stuff using a torque wrench. Use a spanner guys!!!! If you have any mechanical experience, you can feel the threads start to pull way before it is stripped!

Last time I used a torque wrench I stripped out a bolt on my truck's transmission pan. Maybe there's so many stripped bolts due to inconsistencies in the manufacturing of their tensile strength?

I did the same on my bike. The good news is that the bolt threads are weaker than your frame threads so your frame should be OK. (as soon as you get the screen bold out) The bolt looked like it was cast aluminum and the frame is steel.

I've been using torque wrenches on these bikes without a problem. I even used a 6 point 19mm deep socket so as to not round the head. My yz had no problem with this bolt using the same tools, but the wr screen stripped out 5 foot pounds before spec. I wondered if the oil on the threads made me strip it. When I replaced the bolt, you bet I went 5 foot pounds under.

Next time, tighten this bolt by hand without a torque wrench or use 40 foot pounds instead of 45.

Yamaha has been using the same setup since the TT 500 days. I checked mine on the new 450 at the first oil change and won't mess with it unless I start seeing big shrapnel deposits in the oil down the road. I haven't removed the one in my TT 500 ice racer in over a decade. As long as you keep clean oil in the system and the oil pressure is good; I'd say leave it alone.

jdd123 said: The good news is that the bolt threads are weaker than your frame threads so your frame should be OK. (as soon as you get the screen bold out) The bolt looked like it was cast aluminum and the frame is steel.

This would be the best possible outcome.... I won't know until it comes out though and before this goes any further, I want the dealer to have a look. If they basically say I'm screwed, I'll get it out one way or another and see where I'm at.

freestyle250 said: What we had was a piece of aluminum that worked like a shim, and on the inside it was threaded.

If I'm unfortunate enough to have damaged the frame threads too (knowing my luck), I'll give this a try -- thanks.

Hamish said: sorry to hear of your misfortune. I smell a rat with this one. Steel fitting into steel frame.What was the torque requirement?

My manual states 50 ft-lbs for this connection (though jdd123 states 45) and I was nowhere near that. I always work my way up to the spec (for similar reasons you're arguing against a torque wrench in general -- plus I'm used to doing aluminum heads on DOHC carsl) and this connection spun with it set at 40 ft-lbs. There was no warning; there was *very* little resistance. I have to wonder if the threads weren't already damaged before I even touched it. :)

For what it's worth, the ONLY reason I removed the strainer was because this was the first oil change after break-in. I didn't want some bits of sealant from the case, etc. impeding oil flow for the life of the engine. After reading all the warnings about this bolt, I figured this would be the one and only time I'd do it. I was careful, I used the right tools, and I went slow...and still ended up in mess.

Anyway, the TTR will get some ride time this weekend instead and my friend won't be going since he doesn't have his own machine. It sucks. It's life. I'll move on and he can buy his own bike if he's upset.

Thanks for all the kind words everyone...and for letting me rant. Definitely ignore the manual on this one and either leave it alone (there was nothing in mine anyway) or go 'snug' and check it periodically for leaks. *sigh*

i will trade you frames. but if you saw mine you wouldnt want to..........

say the bike came that way, dont admit to anything I say!!

In my limited experience I've found that:

torque wench + oily bolt = IF YOU SEE KAY :)

I almost twisted the down tube drain bolt in half on my XR and I was at about 75% of the specified torque. Luckily the bolt is fairly soft and I felt it give before it twisted completely in two. Needless to say I won't do that again.

One problem could be the way the factory installs them. I don't know about the rest of you but my strainer seemed like it was put on with an air gun then painted over. Had to get out the breaker bar to remove it.

Jim

No one that has been around ever messes with the strainer. Even though the manual tells you should its a bad idea as you have found out the hard way.

My dealer told me that he has never found shit in the strainer unless the motor has grenaded.

The threads must be stripped, maybe Yamaha may take care of itbut you know they are going to blame you.

Ditto! Well known issue with strainer! :) Never need to check the strainer unless oil level reads high after correct oil change refill. :)

I've owned 4 WRs and have never took a wrench to a strainer. I too would never touch it.. Funny, I too use torque wrenches but not for everything. I just don't trust them as much as I trust my hands, T-handles can be dangerous too.. I think a lot of us (including myself) are guilty for over tightening fasteners. Sure, I've stripped many bolts on my bikes. I now have a complete Helicoil kit for just about everything for the WR. :) With each new bike I use less and less torque with fastening bolts, I've just never had bolts fly off the bike because of a torque issue, even with my KTM.. Seat bolts are a common one as well as the oil drain plug.. Don't over tighten the oil drain plug... Sorry you're having such a hard time with your bike... Once it's repaired I'm sure you enjoy the bike more than you are right now..

Dan

I never used to get my torque wrenches calibrated until one year I stripped out my linkage bolt and lower shock nut, so I got it re-calibrated before I started to rebuild my motor and it was off by 30 ft-lbs!! Just imagine the damage I could have done with it of by that much!?! I find that with any fastener complications like stripping or de-capitation, they will always say the same thing...you over torqued it. So now I keep records of my calibration for warrenty purposes. It just gives me a stronger leg to stand on in those situations. I hope it works out for you!

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