Please help me decide...

OK, I know these threads get old, but I am trying to decide between an 04 450 and an 02 426.

I went and saw the 450 tonite. Looks pretty good and the owner says about 40-50 hours on it. My concern is that he has never had the valves checked or adjusted. We drained the oil while I was there and it looked OK, no shiny bits. The bike has a white bros ti exhaust, but it backfires on decel pretty bad. I was also concerned when he told me he uses K&N filter oil on his foam filter. We had it off and I felt around the inside of the boot and didn't come away with any dirt, but who knows.

The other choice is an 02 426 that is owned by the owner of an MX school. He has gone through the engine with new piston and maintained the valves. He seemed much more knowlegable than the other guy and the bike looks better in pictures, but I haven't been over to see it yet (it's a 3 hour drive away) Its got lots of new bits (plastic, bars, cables, sprockets chain, etc) and its about $500 cheaper.

So, any advice? I am going to use this bike to play ride on MX courses as a practice bike for my vintage racing. I doubt I'll ever race it. I'll also do some trail riding with it.

Which way should I go? Any advice would be appreciated

By no means am I an expert but 40-50 hours on a 04 model seems a bit off. I would think there would be more but if that accurate then the valves may not be too out of spec (hopefully). The popping on Decel situation could just be the jetting(sounds lean?) Did you get to ride it or watch him? When I see a bike with a bunch of new plastics and stuff I think abuse but that may not be the case on the 02'. Either way, hopefully everything will work out and you'll have yourself a new bike.

I got to ride it up and down the street, but it was dark and I didn't have a helmet, so I took it very easy. Anyway, I have never ridden anything other than 2 strokes (except for the kid's XR80) so I don't know how it should feel. It felt pretty stout.

The original sprocket and chain are still on the bike and although the sprockets show wear, the teeth are not hooked. I don't know if that is any indication of riding time.

thanks for the input. Anything else I should consider?

I would go with the 450. Its lighter, handles better and all around better than the 426. Now the 426 is a great bike too (all yamaha thumpers are great lol) but its kid of a pig, and handles a little like a tank in comparison to a 450. Valves likely are not a huge issue if the bike has been maintained.. the yamahas go forever it seems on a top end. The popping on decel is likely the air/fuel screw or pilot get.. no big deal.

well the maintenance is what concerns me, since he is using the wrong oil on the air filter and I thought valve adjustments were part of normal maintenance. Hmmmm.

Well does $2800 for an 04 seem like a decent price?

well the maintenance is what concerns me, since he is using the wrong oil on the air filter and I thought valve adjustments were part of normal maintenance. Hmmmm.

Well does $2800 for an 04 seem like a decent price?

I have 100 hours on my '05 YZ450 and the valves are still in spec. I would check them, if I were you, before buying, but quite honestly if he's still on the stock sprockets and chain, there can't be many more than 25-30 hours on it (especially if the teeth aren't hooked that bad). That stock chain will wear out rather quickly, and in turn begin to eat away at the sprockets.

These yz's aren't bullletproof, but they're pretty close. Get the 450, it's worth it.

well the maintenance is what concerns me, since he is using the wrong oil on the air filter and I thought valve adjustments were part of normal maintenance. Hmmmm.

Well does $2800 for an 04 seem like a decent price?

You will enjoy the 450 over the 426....I would even say see what you can get a 06 for.....it is that much better than a 04. 2800 seems reasonable

40-50 hrs is not a lot at all....

Oil filter oil is not a big issue....swap out to a reg filter and regular oil

Valve adj can be done anytime....Yamis are bullet proof

Well, I hope you guys are right. I'm still concerned that this guy didn't even know how to really change the oil and that he was using K&N oil on a foam filter, but I am leaning towards this bike. I hope I don't end up regretting it.

So is the 450 really that much better than a 250 smoker?

Well, I hope you guys are right. I'm still concerned that this guy didn't even know how to really change the oil and that he was using K&N oil on a foam filter, but I am leaning towards this bike. I hope I don't end up regretting it.

So is the 450 really that much better than a 250 smoker?

Get the 450. Speaking for myself, the 4 stroke is the way to go. Even though at times i find myself longing to race my old YZ 250 2-smoke. Once i do that, I am sold on the 4 stroke. It's fun to take a few laps on and thats about it......except for the maintenance costs.

I had a 02 426 and it was truely dependable, it is a beast, a tank, sort of like having a hopped up kabota. It was replaced with a 06 450, good move. IT too as most yz''s is dependable. Go with the 450 you will not have any regrets. Only plus on the 426 is that no one except 426 owners can start it due to the decompression lever.

Only plus on the 426 is that no one except 426 owners can start it due to the decompression lever.

Ha! I guess that is one way to look at it. Most people hate to kick my bike over, where as I enjoy watching them try, before I mention the decomp lever.

my 2 cents: sure the 426 is a beast, but so am I, so I guess it depends on what you can handle. For me the 426 was a great match as I am 6'0" and 250+lbs, so I would take the 426 everytime over the 450, assuming that the 426 is in better shape and cheaper. I have seen some pretty abused bikes out there so the 426 which is almost 6 years old would have to in quite nice shape to consider, (which mine was :crazy: ) I would like to try the 06 450 though to see the difference in that year.

Go with the 450. I was a quad rider, my first bike was the 04 YZ450 and it's still going strong! All my friends ride the 04 Honda and each and every one of them has had to shim or even rebuild thier top end. I checked my valves just a few weeks back and still in specs. If it is still has original chain and sprocket it can't have many hours on it it all. The 04 is extremely torquee. You'll outclimb any stock Honda through the 06's and even some that are piped. Biggest feature over the 426 is the ease of start. 450 is a much easier start process. You'll also want the more power after you see how great the YZ runs.

well this one didn't start so easy for him. Took him maybe 10-15 kicks when I first got there. His starting routine didn't look like any other I had seen though. I'm guessin the valves might be out of adjustment, or else the idle air/fuel screw adjustment. (which does this bike have?)

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