Woo-hoo! 100 hours! Now you’d think that putting time on a motorcycle would be a cinch; just ride, you say. Well, it’s not always that easy. How about when we get snow in Southern California? Half the population doesn’t go outside when it rains, then add freezing temperatures (28 degrees Fahrenheit, that isdon’t laugh, East Coasters) and some weird white stuff and people actually start stocking their canned foods for fear they might get snowed in. Three inches is pretty spooky. But our 2010 YZ450F needed to hit 100 hours. So yes, a portion of that time had to be done in the freezing rainwell, rain, then freezing rain, then snow and some more freezing rainI do believe this Long Haul has seen four seasons of moto conditions.
Shortly after the last update, the front and rear sprockets and chain were pretty worn out and were quickly replaced with some sweet GYTR goodies. We stuck with the standard gearing because, well, it works great. Some riders felt the Rekluse EXP auto clutch slipped too much, so to test that out we took it off and replaced it with the Rekluse manual pressure plate. Some of the guys were bummed to lose the auto clutch, others praised the manual pressure plate for bringing back some of that hit the auto clutch took away. Now this is all rider preference, but in my opinion, the manual was more fun on the motocross track. We were quite impressed with the quality of the manual Rekluse system, though; the clutch action and feel is very smooth and absolutely flawless. The switch was done around 63 hours and we haven’t had any issues since.
As a matter of fact we have only had a couple of very minor issues since the last update. At around 64 hours we ended up with a broken spoke; actually, it was a broken nipple. Nothing major, a quick and easy fix. Around 97 hours came the next problem: The front wheel bearings started to go. After countless pressure washes and no regreasing of those bearings (my bad), the sandy water holes and snow combined with the slightly rusted bearings finished them off. All in all, it was still only a minor $14.95 error. So really, there’s been nothing to cry about when you think about 100 hours on a motorcycle. And if my calculations are correct, that’s roughly17 hours of straight pressure washing. Not bad at all, if you ask me. Through the 100 hours we’ve spent less than $750 on keeping the YZ-F running in top form, modifications not withstanding.
At a cool hundred hours, we are impressed with the durability of the latest-generation YZ450F. With plenty of time spent on the motocross track, trails and even in the rain and snow, and most of that at pro-level speed, she is still running strong and not showing any signs of weakness. We’ve been checking the valve clearances regularly, and they are still spot-on (goes to show what regular maintenance and the lack of unnecessary overrevving do). What else is left for us to do, you ask? We’re getting very close to tearing this puppy down to the last nut and bolt to see just how well she has handled all this abuse. So be sure to keep your eyes peeled for the wrap-up of this Long Haul in a future issue of Dirt Rider.