I stopped by Fremont motorsports this morning to find out what size handlebars are on the 2016 Yamaha WR450. I had looked all over the Internet and couldn't find nothing definite. I was pretty sure they were 7/8 bars but not sure enough to buy some new higher bars for it.
The parts department said that they were 7/8, so I'll go with that. I'm thinking that instead of buying higher bars I might be better off buying a 1 or 2 inch riser, that would definitely be cheaper but I'm having trouble finding a riser for the 2016 model. I've always preferred a higher bar, it makes it easier for me to stand up and I think lower foot pegs would help to.
I finally bought a helmet the other day. I remember back in the day when buying a helmet was no big deal. There was only two styles, the three-quarter helmet that racers used, and the round pot that set on the top your head. You could have any color you wanted just by going out and buying a can of spray paint, because the helmet itself only came in white.
When the helmet wasn't on your head you hung it on the handlebars of the motorcycle and the thought that someone might steal it never occurred to me, and in fact I rode street bikes for 30 years and never lost a helmet.
Needless to say times of have changed, I started looking for helmets on the Internet and after looking at all the options I thought the best helmet for me would be a modular helmet, that's the kind that looks like a full face helmet when it's on your head but you can flip the chin bar up to the top of the helmet and take it on and off like a regular three-quarter helmet. But the problem was a decent one cost hundreds of dollars and I wasn't about to leave a $200 helmet hanging on my motorcycle.
Of course they make locks for helmets but I haven't seen anything that couldn't be defeated with a pair of pliers or a pocket knife. So I devised a cunning plan. I bought a GMAX three-quarter helmet that you see at the top of the page for about $90, which is an amount that I can sort of live with if it gets stolen. And to prevent it from being stolen I am going to ugly it up a bit by making it look kind of old and beat up so it doesn't look like it's worth stealing, then I will lock it to the bike by the D rings just like everyone does.
If that doesn't work I'll go to Walmart, buy a $49 helmet and hope my head never hits the pavement.
Cool guy on a Yamaha WR 450, This will never be me .
When I checked in to Haggard's RV Park a few days ago I couldn't believe how lucky I was. Because not only is it a nice place to stay, but when I was telling the owners, Nancy and Matt Fetty, that I was here to pick up my new Yamaha WR450, and explained that I needed to have a motorcycle rack built and welded to the back of my Arctic Fox fifth wheel. I asked them if they knew of a welding shop in the area that could do that. And Matt said said I sure do, mine!
I couldn't believe my luck! Matt took me into the RV storage area and showed me an old motorcycle rack that he had laying there and said he could weld some receivers to the frame of my Arctic Fox and put this rack right in them.
He took some measurements of the Arctic Fox frame and is getting some material to cross brace and strengthen the frame at the back of the trailer. And some time this week I'm going to pull the Arctic Fox to Pueblo where his shop is and have the job done.
Once the welding is all finished the old rack will need to be cleaned and painted. Matt is checking on a place in town that can sandblast and powder coat it, and if that's not too expensive I'll have that done, but if it cost too much it will just be me, sandpaper, and a rattle can.
This is the Australian version of the Yamaha WR450, it has cool black rims.
One of the things that had been worrying me about buying a motorcycle is how I was going to carry it. Since I live, and travel, in my Arctic Fox fifth wheel I knew I was going to have to put something on the back of the trailer that could safely carry the motorcycle. And the simplest and cheapest thing seemed to be a rack that could be attached to the back of the trailer.
The first thing I did was call the Northwood factory and asked them if it would be safe to carry a 300 pound motorcycle on the back of the Arctic Fox 27 – 5L. And they told me if I welded a receiver hitch to the frame and cross braced the frame it would be just fine. I was glad to hear that because I know there are some trailers that they don't even want you to hang a bicycle on the back of.
Since I live by myself I have to be able to take the motorcycle on and off the trailer with no help, and I've been a bit concerned how that was going to work out. Knowing me if it's not an easy, and safe thing to do then I will look for excuses not to take the bike off and ride it.
The Arctic Fox is kind of high off the ground so I never assumed that I would be able to push a 271 pound motorcycle up a ramp to get it on the rack, so I'm hoping that I can crank the bike up and idle it up the ramp. If that doesn't work out too well I guess I will have to figure a way to hook up a little winch and pull it up the ramp.
I need to be able to take the bike off the rack from either end of the rack, in other words I can't have a chock bolted to one end of the rack. Because sometimes I have to Park the trailer in places where taking the motorcycle off in one direction might not be possible. But without a chock to grab the front wheel and hold it, its going to be difficult for me to hold the bike in place and tie it down at the same time. Maybe I could have a way to just put it on its kickstand while its on the rack.
I'll get it figured out, after all I don't have much choice because at the moment I own a motorcycle that I have no way to carry.
Welcome to my very first post on a brand-new page on my blog. This blog is going to be about the joy and the pain of living with my brand-new 2016 Yamaha WR 450F.
The fact is I haven't started living with my Yamaha just yet, it's still at Fremont Motorsports in Florence Colorado and it looks like it's going to be a couple of weeks before I can bring it home. I did get to sit on it the other day but not for long and that was by my choice and not there's, because frankly it feels like I'm sitting on a 2 x 4. The seat is hard and narrow, and my feet dangle helplessly several inches from the floor. I could've sat there with my feet on the foot pegs but I don't trust kickstands to hold me up because I've seen them break before.
With a 38 inch seat height I don't think a yoga instructor could get on and off that bike gracefully. I had to stand on the foot peg to get on at all and even then it was a struggle. Now bear in mind I'm 6 foot tall and have about a 34 inch inseam, but I've got more days behind me than I do ahead of me and I don't bend like I used to.
The solution to this problem is obviously that the bike needs to be lowered. The salesman measured from the bottom of my foot to the floor and determined that I'm 3 inches from being able to flatfoot when I stop. So what were doing is this, I've ordered a seat that's 1 inch lower than the factory seat, now taking 1 inch of foam off of that seat is going to make it pretty thin, so I'm keeping the factory seat just in case, the dealer ordered a Yamalink that's made for the 2016 WR450 and its supposed to drop it another inch and a quarter. That should leave my feet hovering about three quarters of an inch above the ground, and I'm hoping they can adjust the suspension to bring it down that much.
The other reason its still in the shop is that I'm having it titled as a street bike. As you know the WR 450 is an off-road bike here in America but fortunately Colorado has been very generous in their rules about what constitutes a street bike. Fremont Motorsports is handling all the paperwork so all I have to do is request a highway patrolman to come to the dealership and sign a paper saying that it has all the street legal equipment on it and I'll be good to go. So with a couple of DOT tires, some odds and ends like a horn, a mirror, and a brake light switch, I can be cruising the twisties in the Colorado mountains just like I belong there.
Yes I know the head looks like it's on backwards, and that's because Japan is on the other side of the earth so their left is our right. When the bike is in Japan it looks perfectly normal.