Race Tech 2018 Yamaha YZ450F Suspension Revalve Review
When it came to getting the suspension revalved on our 2018 Yamaha YZ450F build, our choice to handle the job was Race Tech. Personally, this was my first time having suspension work done by them and I was eager to see how Corona, California-based company could improve the already-good KYB Speed-Sensitive System (SSS) fork and KYB shock on the YZ450F.
I rode the 2018 Yamaha YZ450F with stock suspension for about 30 hours. While I was very pleased with the components in standard form, both ends were a little soft for a pro-level rider and rode a bit lower in the stroke than I would prefer. On top of that, with 30 hours of use, it was a good time to have the suspension gone through and rebuilt before I raced the bike at the first two rounds of the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Nationals at Hangtown MX and Glen Helen Raceway.
It took about one full day to get the revalved fork and shock broken in. During that first day, we checked the sag before all of my motos. We only checked it twice on the second day of riding—once in the middle of the day and once at the end of the day. At this point, the sag remained the same from moto to moto and felt broken in. The modifications Race Tech did improved the suspension remarkably and provided exactly what I wanted. Both ends stayed higher in the stroke and had better bottoming resistance, all while retaining the plushness that Yamaha’s suspension has become so well known for.
The clicker settings that Race Tech delivered the fork and shock with were right on the money. The only adjustments I made were stiffening up the fork and shock between three and four clicks for the morning motos when the dirt was soft and rutted, and the bike is slightly heavier due to having excess mud on the fenders. I do this as more of a personal preference because I want the suspension to ride higher in the stroke in these conditions to avoid having it feel like it’s being weighed down, almost as if the bike is getting sucked down into the deeply tilled dirt. As the day wears on, I will soften the front and rear in one click increments as the track dries out and becomes harder packed. These subtle changes make the bike more rideable and less stiff as the track develops, and as rider fatigue sets in.
When it comes to suspension, I want to have my cake and eat it to. The Race Tech revalved suspension on the 2018 YZ450F allowed me to do just that. It rode higher in the stroke than the stock suspension, was soft enough in the initial part of the stroke to be comfortable in braking bumps, and was stiff enough to handle large jump landings. I am very impressed with how well it performed on all of the tracks I rode with it, especially when I raced the Hangtown and Glen Helen Nationals. Both of those tracks put the Race Tech suspension to the ultimate test, and it passed with flying colors.
Contact: racetech.com/; (951) 279-6655