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Old 03-15-2013, 04:17 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Sleeper Quad

I need to brag a bit being that this is the first time I've ever done a project this big by myself. I took my 04 YFZ450 to the Silver Lake sand dunes in Summer 2011. The air box fell off and sand destroyed the cylinder/piston. The quad was given to me by a friend going into the USAF and it wasn't maintained very well to begin with.

I spent last spring, summer, and most of fall rebuilding the top end and learning everything there is to know about these quads. After all was said and done, I had $1320 into a 478 big bore kit, new titanium valves, starter, solenoid,gaskets and o-rings, and timing chain and slides. I had the piston coated at Line 2 Line for a good 2/1000s clearance and better compression.

I thought that was the end of it. After we got it all back together, it ran for a few minutes and came to a screeching halt AGAIN. WTF!? The crankshaft assembly had seized up completely.

I ripped it apart again and had my mechanic friend help me with the lower end because we all know how much of a doozy those trannys are not to mention all the syncing that has to take place while building it back up. I replaced the old with the new. A Hot Rod crankshaft asy, hot rod crank bearings, Wiseco clutch plates, gear stator gear case cover (cracked in previous reassembly of motor), battery, new front and rear sprocket and chain, lots of oil to flush the metal shavings and crap from the lines, new filter, and jets. Thus bringing my grand total to $2,065. FML. Parents aren't happy. I don't care, I was in too deep already.

Definitely worth it! After lots of breaking in in first gear around the neighborhood, I got it up into 3rd gear and she's still lifting up in the front!
Can't wait to see how it really performs out there. There is an excessive amount of torque and power like I have never felt from a 450, even the newer Bill Balance that my friend bought new (but I do envy his fuel injection).

I call it a sleeper quad because all the modifications are unseen. The plastics are sh*t and have white stress marks and will eventually be replaced. Tires are God awful and are 10 years old. My best friends cousin hit a tree at 40+ mph and demolished the front bumper which in turn ripped a weld point from the frame. That will get fixed soon. The frame itself looks like it has been sitting in a sand blaster too long. The exhaust will get heat wrapped or coated at Line 2 Line.

All in all, it may not look pretty, but it'll definitely kick some ass! Warmer weather would be much appreciated at this point!
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Old 03-20-2013, 10:45 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Spent a few hours in the shop on Monday night to make this custom front bumper. My best friend's cousin put it into a tree a couple summers ago. It broke the lower weld mount off the frame. We fixed that up with an almost identical washer/nut combo and welded it in place. It's not structural so it will be fine.

We tried our hand at MIG and TIG welding the old aluminum bumper back together and failed miserably. We stood puzzled for a while and off went the light bulbs! Over to the scrap bin to find some 1" steel electrical conduit tubing and some 1/4" steel angle bar. A hand tube bender made it easy to bend the corners or the 20" bar, then we cut the angle bar to length for the four supports.

After tacking it in place, we took it off and welded it. With the added notching to form the angle bar around the tubing, it makes for nice bending stress at certain points if ever in a front end impact and the it would bend instead of destroying the frame again. After a quick wire wheel clean, it went into the sand blaster. That was clutch in this situation and the chrome paint stuck to it and evened out perfectly.

The result is the beautiful hand made bumper that looks straight out of the factory. I'm really proud of how it came out with both my friend and I being rookie welders.
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Old 03-20-2013, 11:03 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Nice!!
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Old 06-25-2013, 11:33 AM   #4 (permalink)
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This quad was put to the test at Twisted Trails in Copemish, MI near the end of May. It withstood the brutal pounding of the uneven land and the hard gassing I was doing around corners and through the trails.

It's fate came once again after I hit a 2 foot kicker at about 30 mph and caught some massive air to flat. Came down hard on the rear tires. I didn't know the damage I had done until I hear a loud whine while in 4th gear and I start slowing down. I thought the worst of course but I soon realized it was only my chain that had fallen off. I got it back on fairly easily and continued until it fell off 3... 4.... 5 more times. I put a jack under it to rotate the hub back and tighten the chain and found that my rear axle bearings/seals were shot and the axle was moving in all sorts of directions. Should be a quick hour fix at most and around $60 to get this POS back on her feet.

Worth it.
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Old 06-25-2013, 11:46 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Glad u didnt break something that didnt need replaced...lol
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Old 01-15-2014, 03:29 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Thing sounds pretty awesome if you ask me.
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Old 01-21-2014, 01:56 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Thanks guys! Your responses got me in the newsletter! That's pretty awesome if you ask me. I have some updates for ya'll.

I finally did the hub bearing swap. It was a lot worse than I thought (see picture 1 & 2). The bearings had practically exploded and had shred the inside of that hub. I was finding pieces of bearings in there for hours; many balls had been shaved into half spheres! Probably wasn't the best idea to keep riding that day... You can see the pieces of the ball bearings, the outer raceway, shield, and cage in a mangled carnage. Picture 3 is how I cut the outer raceway out with an angle grinder on one of the hottest, most humid days in Michigan weather. Is that sweat or tears? I like to think it's a little of both.

I still have a little play in the rear axle after the swap which means I probably need a new (billet aluminum!) bearing carrier, but for now, she's holdin' up.

Picture 4 is a whole new story. I had just gotten back from Silver Lake Sand Dunes. My cousin was coming over. He had been up from Ohio multiple times and every time my quad was decommissioned. He joked, "don't break it before I get there!" As he was making a short drive from my relatives house only 20 minutes away, I decided to warm it up around the yard. All of the sudden, a loud bang a sharp burning sensation on my right calf; the header shot off. If it ain't one thing, it's another... The welded ring that mates to the cylinder head had heated up so much that it had ripped clean off. I learned a little about tuning that day. I needed a new header but the FMF power/megabombs didn't suit me. I opted for the Yoshimura RS-2. This quad is now a little less of a sleeper with that shimmering beauty!

My next projects include:
1. Plasti-dipping the plastics flat black to match my riding gear.
2. a total transmission rebuild (I need suggestions on this). At full throttle, it will slip out of gear, into neutral in 4th and 5th gear. It is the hardest shift when sitting in one place.
3. I need to get on a dyno after #2 is done so I can report my efforts in numbers!








Last edited by FishKU7; 01-21-2014 at 02:07 PM. Reason: Pictures did not show up
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Old 01-21-2014, 02:09 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Pics aren't working.

Try here:
fishku7's's Library | Photobucket
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Old 01-21-2014, 03:40 PM   #9 (permalink)
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"Credit for the building the top end that gives me all that power, goes to The Stig"

You forgot something^^
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Old 01-21-2014, 03:52 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Indeed, the Stig does get credit for rebuilding the top end while I was studying in Germany :)
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