Yamaha WR450F Suspension RevalveSometimes just one mod can transform a bike, and for the Yamaha WR450, we’ve found it. In preparation for our 2009 450cc Off-Road Shootout we had Factory Connection revalve the suspension on our otherwise very stock WR.We told the Factory Connection crew the bike would be going head-to-head with the latest offerings from KTM, Husaberg and Husky along with a stable of competition from Japan. The crew took knowledge gained from working with the AmPro Yamaha GNCC team and set our stuff up using the stock springs, which worked perfectly for our 185-pound average weight range and kept the price down.In the fork Factory Connection utilizes an updated compression base bolt that it developed for open cartridge forks. The mid-speed valve is updated to add control and progression throughout the stroke by preventing the fork from compressing too deeply into the travel too quickly. The rebound setting is changed to provide a more consistent and controlled rebound action. On the shock FC changes the compression piston plate to meter oil flow and the high-speed compression adjuster spring. FC has developed two models: soft and medium. Our WR took the soft one. Much softer than the standard spring, it’s targeted to work on small bumps and square-edge stuff for more control and predictability in rocks and roots especially. The crew also put on the their heavy-duty bump rubber and a “team” works preload ring with a bearing in it to lessen the twisting tension of the spring.Now, you don’t feel anything while bouncing up and down on the bike in the shop, but it didn’t take much riding to realize that something pretty substantial was happening here. The suspension transformed the WR from feeling heavy, slightly dead-riding and sluggish to being much more peppy. The bike rode lighter on its wheels and got a lot more precise with its handling. It even gained a few track-capable manners it didn’t even come close to possessing stock. Yet it didn’t get stiff and rigid; it was still as plush as it ever was, maybe even better. It was so good as delivered, the sag was right on with 180-pound riders and we never even touched a clicker during the test. Even more impressive, riders were asking to ride the bike more and it just about catapulted the Yamaha to second place in the comparison.That is saying a lot for a seemingly simple, yet complex-in-development $735.60 suspension revalve (springs could cost an additional $110 per end if your weight requires them). And it only took two days for the turnaround from the SoCal shop. So if you feel you want more out of your WR, Factory Connection has proven to us that it knows how to do it.