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usmcpaul

Steel or Aluminum frame; 4spd. or 5spd?

10 posts in this topic

Hi everyone, I started to ride the tracks this year and I really, really enjoyed it.

My problem is 4 fold,

1. My current bike needs valve adjustments constantly, so to fix this problem I am going to remove the gas cap and put a dependable bike under it .( Can you guess what color it is?) Problem fixed!

2. I am thinking about a Yamaha , but money is kind of tight, so I am thinking about getting an older YZ450f. Is the steel frame (05 and older) that big of a drawback.

3. I am a little concerned about a 4 spd.. I currently have a 5spd. and would like some feedback from those that have had real world experience.

4. I have never had a Yamaha, and I just started my research, so what problems do they have and what should I look out for.

Thanks to all, this is a great site.

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well i cant say i have ridden one of the new 5 speeds.. i want to though, But i now have an 03' yz 450 and i actually dont mind the 4-speed. Not much shifting at the track. I had a 5-speed 125, and when i got my 450 its not like i got on it and went " wow this 4-speed is weird" i didnt even really notice the difference. As far as the alluminum frame goes, once again i have never ridden one, but i do hear that they feel alot lighter and handle better. And as for problems.. well i havent really found any sort of bug in my 03' yet, these yamaha 's are as solid as a rock.

Hope that helps some.

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i really dont have much input on the steel framed 450s but i do have a 426. with the steel frame..

2. the bike tends to be top heavy, and pushes in the corners. but someone on here used a new linkage which helped alot( cant remeber the manf. but search "your steel framed 450 will turn" or something like that)

3. the 4spd on the 450s are good, they have a nice gear ratio that matches well with the motor.

4.yamis are bullet proof. my 07 has never had a valve out of adjustment neither has my 02 426. but i would do the normal routine of repacking the steering stem/greese the linkage.. the normal stuff when u first pick up the bike.

some others will have more input, but hopefully this will help alittle.

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Thanks Vinny and Slinkyman, I am just trying to justify $6500 for a new bike vs. $3500 for a used bike. I have already made the mistake of spending the big bucks for a new 'reliable' bike, and being unpleasantly surprised.

I would also like to take the time to thank Honda for giving me the opportunity to really test my blood pressure meds, and finally get some use out of my feeler gauges and micrometer.

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I know this is the 450 question but this year i went from a 04 yz250f to a 07 yz250f and WOW. the bike seamed to corner alot nicer, and the suspention was even better. But if your on a budget try to find a nice clean used bike.

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2. I am thinking about a Yamaha , but money is kind of tight, so I am thinking about getting an older YZ450f. Is the steel frame (05 and older) that big of a drawback.
Yes. Coming from your "current bike with valve problems", you will not like the steel frame. The bike will feel top heavy, heavy, and reluctant to turn. The aluminum frame models are like ten years of progress overnight.
3. I am a little concerned about a 4 spd.. I currently have a 5spd. and would like some feedback from those that have had real world experience.
The 4 speed is not as big a liability as some people think. The overall spacing is wider, and the effect is that with the same low gear, 4th in the 4 speed falls between 4th and 5th on a 5 speed. Yamaha did a hugely better job of gear spacing than Suzuki or Kawasaki did. But even so, the 5 speed is more versatile.
4. I have never had a Yamaha, and I just started my research, so what problems do they have and what should I look out for.

Mechanically, not very much. Some find the handling difficult, but there are cures for those "problems".

I don't know how tight money is for you, but the '06's are beginning to be available for less money. I paid $3800 for one that had very low hours on it not long ago. My advice would be to go that way if you can.

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Thanks for your input Grayracer, I had the exact same concern about the steel frame that you pointed out. And you are right aout the 06 prices coming down. It will probably be money well spent if I go with an 06.

Another question I have about the Yamaha 's is the suspension. Is there anyone in Michigan that has a good reputation for re'doing the stock suspension on them, or am I better off sending it out. I remember reading about a place in CA that has a great reputation. I am about 5'8", 215lbs. and a begining track rider.

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:worthy:

Thanks for your input Grayracer, I had the exact same concern about the steel frame that you pointed out. And you are right aout the 06 prices coming down. It will probably be money well spent if I go with an 06.

Another question I have about the Yamaha 's is the suspension. Is there anyone in Michigan that has a good reputation for re'doing the stock suspension on them, or am I better off sending it out. I remember reading about a place in CA that has a great reputation. I am about 5'8", 215lbs. and a begining track rider.

That place in Ca. is ENZO Racing. You can find an o6 for around 3500- 4500. it would be worth looking around and you will not be disappointed

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get an 06 and change the to a 170 main and 48 pilot! i live in iowa and with those jets, that bike is an absolute hammer!!! as far as comparing the 06 to say an 04, my buddy had an 04 and he constantly complained about the vibes (the thing vibrated so hard that the damn hot start lever came off!!!) he tried switching bars to no avail..there was nothing wrong with the bike because he bought it new and it had vibrated like hell since...i rode it a couple times and going from MY PROPPERLY JETTED 06 there was no comparison!!! the 06 was leaps and bounds better!!! but like i said WITH THE PROPER JETTING my buddies 04 ran waaaaaay better than my 06 until i did the rejet (i had to kick mine like 20 times before the SOB would start and it didnt really run worth a shit) but AFTER the rejet my bike was UNSTOPPABLE.

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I agree, go with an 06. Great bike. Cant beat the 5 speed. Bike is smooth. I run the same jetting. Get a external fuel adjustment screw (zip ty). Havent touched my valves since I bought it. In fact I bought 2, one for my son. One yellow and one blue. This bike will last you a long time. Good luck

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