HEADS UP!!!

Site upgrade in progress... Core site functions are working, but some non-critical features/functions will be temporarily unavailable while we work to restore them over the next couple of weeks.

Please post any bugs you encounter, but before you do, check to see if it's already listed.

Thanks for your patience while we work to improve the community.

Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
macs69

YZ426 in tight woods

25 posts in this topic

Had one of my most masochistic rides ever yesterday, and really missed my old YZ250 two stroke. Heat index here was 110 plus, and I'm a little out of shape, so those factors did contribute.

Anyway, the terrain was brutally tight single track, and I felt like a fish out of water on the 426. The fact that the bike carries it's weight a little high, coupled with the "hitty" powerband just wore me out. Bottom of my right foot hurts like heck this morning from all the kicking to re-start.

Bottom line is this- I know that the 250 two stroke is a much better tool for this type of riding. Swapped back onto my old 250 for a few minutes, and the thirty-something pounds less bike, as well as carrying the weight lower, was very apparent. Was a joy to ride. Does anyone have great success with the 426 in really tight woods, or am I just that out of shape and rusty?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have ridden my 426 in many different environments and one this is for sure... it (or I) does not lend itself well to be ridden in tight "single-track" woods. I am somewhat short (5'7") and "muscling" the bike around in areas like that is just not fun for me. I like when I can "ride" the bike and not have "battle" for every foot of progress. Or course I just might not be good at riding in the woods. However when I tried my buddies CRF250X it sure made all the difference in the world! So I tend to keep the YZ426 on a little more "open" terrain.` :ride:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Does anyone have great success with the 426 in really tight woods, or am I just that out of shape and rusty?

I'm out of shape, but not rusty. And I enjoy the single track with my 426. The Rekluse auto-clutch makes single track a lot more fun than riding with a manual clutch. Not clutching the beast helps in the tight stuff, plus the auto-clutch gets great traction on off-cambers and nasty rooted hills.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Had one of my most masochistic rides ever yesterday, and really missed my old YZ250 two stroke. Heat index here was 110 plus, and I'm a little out of shape, so those factors did contribute.

Anyway, the terrain was brutally tight single track, and I felt like a fish out of water on the 426. The fact that the bike carries it's weight a little high, coupled with the "hitty" powerband just wore me out. Bottom of my right foot hurts like heck this morning from all the kicking to re-start.

Bottom line is this- I know that the 250 two stroke is a much better tool for this type of riding. Swapped back onto my old 250 for a few minutes, and the thirty-something pounds less bike, as well as carrying the weight lower, was very apparent. Was a joy to ride. Does anyone have great success with the 426 in really tight woods, or am I just that out of shape and rusty?

Are you new on the 426 as apposed to the 250? Maybe your not used to the 426 and have alot of seat time hours on the 250?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have ridden the 426 in some really tight New England stuff and it can be arduous but some times good fun, however I have a 300xcw and a KDX220 which are much better at said task. I ride the 426 when things are a little more open and after two strokes the thumper is a blast!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Are you new on the 426 as apposed to the 250? Maybe your not used to the 426 and have alot of seat time hours on the 250?

You're right, I do have a ton more seat time in the 250 as opposed to the 426. There was just such a graphic difference in weight, and the way the bikes carried the weight, illustrated by hopping off one, and them immediately on the other.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Biggest improvement for the woods I did to my WR was to lower the suspension by 2 inches front and rear. The local suspension (race tech) guru did it for me when cleaning and checking my mods for little over the price of the basic service. Lowered the center of gravity and the bike felt like she lost 20 pounds:-) Also put my feet closer to the ground for those unexpected stops on uneven hills:-) I still have the bottoming resistance through the improved valving.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Bottom line is this- I know that the 250 two stroke is a much better tool for this type of riding. Swapped back onto my old 250 for a few minutes, and the thirty-something pounds less bike, as well as carrying the weight lower, was very apparent. Was a joy to ride. Does anyone have great success with the 426 in really tight woods, or am I just that out of shape and rusty?

Hate to say it (Don't take offense as you asked) you are out of shape. If you can't ride a 426 without getting tired on single track, you are not going to ride a 250 2-stroke without getting tired. It may take a little longer on the 250 2-Stroke. I will admit that the 426 in comparision to a 250 2-stroke is like swinging a bat in the on-deck circle with a donut weight on - in comparision to a lighter weight bat with no donut. Point is, you have to go with what fits your physical size, riding level and preference. I have alot of success with the 426 in the tight stuff but is has taken me a long time to get there. Yes it is harder to ride, yes it is harder to start (I seldom if ever stall, no rekluse ) but the thrill of the power to go thru, up and over about anything is the trade off for me.

Just think how fast & how long you could ride once you had your 426 nailed down in the tight stuff then jumped on a 250 2-Stroke? I might be there some day...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One thing for sure is that the 426 is not a light machine, and single track tight woods is probably its worst application. But, I find it is pretty easy to live with, having all of that torque pretty much right off the bat really helps. I know first gear is fairly long and def has a tendency to stall out every now and then, but if you having major trouble with that I would suggest the Rekluse clutch. I don't have one, but from what I have read they make a world of difference for woods riding..and everything else. I ride some really intense Ma/RI trails and that thing just eats em up...could definitely stand to loose a few pounds off of the bike, but at speed its almost comforting. The stability at speed over rocks and all that jazz is pretty impressive. Good luck with the 426 though and just get some more seat time, I had the same issues going from my 250f.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My last bike was a XR600 so my 426 feels like a bicycle now. I'm a pretty bad rider but I found standing up in the tight stuff really helps. Probalby a given for an experienced rider but try it out if you haven't. I also put a Rekluse in mine and love it. Rode in some tight stuff Saturday and then the track Sunday and never stalled it. One less thing to worry about.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Bottom of my right foot hurts like heck this morning from all the kicking to re-start.

I know the feeling, I had a black bruise on the bottom of my foot, and could hardly walk for about 2-3 days.

Sorry got to tell the story...

My brother in law sold me the bike cause he said he was too old to keep kicking on it.

He taught me the way he did it, and it was all wrong. (keep trying to give full throttle on start like a 2T)

I read the owners manual and did according to there instructions, and still took me 30-40 mins to get it going.

I knew something was still not right, so i pulled the spark plug on it.

It was completely BLACK and Fouled. (The plug had not been changed in about 1 1/2 yrs.)

Put a new plug in it, and first half kick - no throttle fired right up.

No problems since...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

i love my wr426 ,it took a couple of years to get used to,biggest improvement was a yz tank and seat. i ride single track or no trail most of the time

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I ride mostly tight trails, not quite single track but still pretty tight, on my yz400 and it is a heavy beast. Its my first bike ever so it forced me to learn quickly. I'm still out of shape and have alot to learn as a rider but when I finally do upgrade to something newer and lighter, i think i will have benefited from heaving the 400 around turns. When i jump on my friends 450 it feels like a feather. With that said, I still love my bike and will probably keep it around for a long time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Taking my 01 through some of the loops in northern Michigan (Tomahawk Trail) is like taking a cheese grater to my thigh. I'll ride them occasionally and I am getting better at it, but the woods guys on the off-road bikes kill me.

I think its a combination of weight, torque and engine braking. And throw in all the clutch work or engine locking up just wears me down. When we get into the snowmobile trails or the two tracks I am riding up their asses but once we get back into the wooded single tracks I'm done.

The bike is a beast, its unforgiving, but still fast and violent as hell. Its taken a beating and still starts on one kick 6 years later.

I love my 426.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

i've never had a problem on difficult single track trails. the weight doesn't bother but i'm in shape and plenty capable of handling a heaver bike

look at it this way: the bike will get you into shape:)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sold my 02 426 and bought a 250 2T. Much happier and faster now in tight stuff. There is really no comparison. The 426 is a great bike for certain things but tight woods is not one of them. I came to this after riding a KDX 220 which felt like a mountain bike compared to the 426. However, I do miss the torque with the Hot Cams setup. But, the 250 2T does the job well. Overall, I think the 250 is a lot more fun.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sold my 02 426 and bought a 250 2T. Much happier and faster now in tight stuff. There is really no comparison. The 426 is a great bike for certain things but tight woods is not one of them. I came to this after riding a KDX 220 which felt like a mountain bike compared to the 426. However, I do miss the torque with the Hot Cams setup. But, the 250 2T does the job well. Overall, I think the 250 is a lot more fun.

I rode a RM 250 smoker a couple weeks ago on a MX track. From my short time on it, I can say it is a big difference between the 2 bikes. And I'm not so sure I could go back.

For nothing but woods racing a 250 smoker might be a good choice, but if you can only own one bike for all types of riding.... the 426 is tough to beat. 426's do everything well, MX/HS and everything in between. :confused:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I rode my '01YZ426 in the woods all the time around the Mt. Rainier areas in Washington... Very tight stuff at times and I loved it... Then again I've ridden the same trails since I was 7 so maybe I'm just badass ; )

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Does anyone have great success with the 426 in really tight woods, or am I just that out of shape and rusty?

13/52 gearing and all the usual woods goodies (hand guards etc) with 6 years in the woods on my 426 and never a complaint.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ditto on the 13/52 gearing, helps alot. takes away some top end but worth it in the tight woods. If you go on open ride, change back to stock gear. This will give the 426 beast multi usage.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0