KX450f - chain sprocket suggestions

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12/27/2020 8:30 PM

Anyone have suggestions firstly on chains. O / X ring is what I was leaning towards but open to suggestions. I want as little stretch and adjustment as possible.

Then sprockets if I’m putting the money on a good chain anyone able to suggest some sprockets that hold up very well. Don’t really care about the tiny bit of weight between brands and materials just want what won’t wear out.

Thanks

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12/27/2020 8:45 PM
Edited Date/Time: 12/27/2020 9:17 PM

I am absolutely sold on Ironman sprockets by Dirt Tricks and DID x-ring chains (I use their 520ERVT model).

Check Ironman sprockets here:
https://dirttricks.com/product-category/kawasaki/

Here's are a few semi-recent reviews on Ironman sprockets:
https://motocrossactionmag.com/mxa-team-tested-dirt-tricks-zirconium-steel-sprocket/
-and-
https://advrider.com/f/threads/supersprox-vs-dirt-tricks-ironman-sprocket-weight.893320/

Check out DID chains and details on the the 520ERVT chain here:
https://didchain.com/chains/
"The 520ERVT is designed as our top-of-the-line enduro chain, but it's strength, lightweight, and extended chain life makes it an ultimate racing chain."
-and-
"This is our lightest and longest lasting X-Ring chain in the 520 size."
The best price I can routinely find on this chain is from Chaparral Motorsports on eBay here:
https://www.ebay.com/itm/Gold-Sz-114-Links-DID-520ERVT-X-Ring-Chain-/373052996595?_trksid=p2349624.m46890.l49292

I am aware of no better sprockets and chains. Absolutely there are other excellent products out there, but my engineering background and tons of off-road hours (as well as my friends' experiences) on big-bore bikes has convinced me these are best.

To fully bulletproof your drivetrain, consider these mods as well:

(1) Scotts shark fin:
https://www.rockymountainatvmc.com/parts/scotts-performance-shark-fin-p#ReviewsTab

(2) TM Designs chain guide kits:
https://www.rockymountainatvmc.com/parts/t.m.-designworks-gp-mx-slide-and-glide-kit-p

Enjoy the extra time riding and piece of mind these products will provide!

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12/27/2020 9:12 PM
Edited Date/Time: 12/27/2020 9:12 PM

Added a few more details for reference. Cheers!

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12/28/2020 6:58 AM

Met someone at the track today with those sprockets and he spoke highly of them as well, good deal. Also somehow hadn’t seen that specific chain. Thanks very much for the input, will be reading the articles 👍

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12/28/2020 8:26 AM

tb14 wrote:

Anyone have suggestions firstly on chains. O / X ring is what I was leaning towards but open to suggestions. I want as little stretch and adjustment as possible.

Then sprockets if I’m putting the money on a good chain anyone able to suggest some sprockets that hold up very well. Don’t really care about the tiny bit of weight between brands and materials just want what won’t wear out.

Thanks

With the KX 450F there are some initial must have mods. I will answer your question first. Chain and sprockets. I run Sunstar MXR1 Works chains. Amazing on the performance end, but equally on the durability side. Basic clean and lube, and this chain lasts for hours. Sprockets, I use the Works sprocket, 50 T, same amazing results as the chain. They also have the OEM steel sprocket that is stock on the bike.
The must do mods. Chain guide/slider. This has always been an initial Kawasaki mod. I run the Acerbis guide and sliders. Again for the performance and durability of the product. If you have a 19 or newer, you will want to replace your lower roller with a 16-18 OEM, 2 bearing system. Not a must do, but since you are replacing your chain, I run a 116 link chain for better traction and rear suspension feel.
Photo

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David
774 CC Powersports Kawasaki
Factory Backing Factory Seat
Acerbis Dunlop
Sunstar Braking
MX Engine Stands
Matrix Concepts

12/28/2020 11:42 AM

Ive been enjoying the primary drive stuff again. Lasts and is cheaper than the big brands.

$ for $ it’s definitely the way to go. They have colored sprockets and gold chains so the bike is still going to look good.

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12/28/2020 6:31 PM
Edited Date/Time: 12/28/2020 6:33 PM

I've had so many chains and sprockets I really don't think it matters. Most of the time the front sprocket wears out first and then I usually just replace everything. An o-ring chain will definitely outlast your front sprocket so what are you going to do get new sprockets and just keep that old ass chain?

Who here replaces chains and sprockets individually?

I usually get the cheapest setup with an aluminum rear sprocket and steel front sprocket. Then I spend my money on tires and suspension.

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12/28/2020 6:37 PM

Just get what looks coolest on your bike and don't get an o-ring chain because a regular chain is cheaper probably won't break anyways

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12/28/2020 7:31 PM

I guarantee if you go premium (Ironman sprockets and a good x/z-ring chain) that you'll save money in the long-run and you'll spend way less time on maintenance.

X/Z-ring chains stretch slightly at break-in and then you don't have to adjust them for a loooooong time.

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12/28/2020 7:37 PM
Edited Date/Time: 12/28/2020 9:09 PM

I guarantee if you go premium (Ironman sprockets and a good x/z-ring chain) that you'll save money in the long-run and you'll spend way less time on maintenance.

X/Z-ring chains stretch slightly at break-in and then you don't have to adjust them for a loooooong time.

Also remember, you are riding a 450F. That's waaaay more power than a 250F. Tensile strength of a chain really comes into play here, as a 450F can pull on the chain far harder. You have way less margin/safety factor where Safety Factor (SF) = (maximum tensile strength of chain) / (maximum tension in actual application). We use this in engineering all the time to see how close our designs are to failing.

In my opinion, going cheap on a motorcycle chain is equivalent to going cheap on a helmet. The consequences are too high to "play chicken" with.

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12/28/2020 10:20 PM

Cant and won't knock the above as those are great products. My 0.02; I have been running MIKA chain and sprockets without issues. I use the hybrid rear sprocket and it lasts forever. Doesn't hurt that they are a great family ran business that supports all the local events up here in NorCal. Cheers

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12/29/2020 7:13 AM
Edited Date/Time: 12/29/2020 7:14 AM

Rider 5280 wrote:

I guarantee if you go premium (Ironman sprockets and a good x/z-ring chain) that you'll save money in the long-run and you'll spend way less time on maintenance.

X/Z-ring chains stretch slightly at break-in and then you don't have to adjust them for a loooooong time.

Also remember, you are riding a 450F. That's waaaay more power than a 250F. Tensile strength of a chain really comes into play here, as a 450F can pull on the chain far harder. You have way less margin/safety factor where Safety Factor (SF) = (maximum tensile strength of chain) / (maximum tension in actual application). We use this in engineering all the time to see how close our designs are to failing.

In my opinion, going cheap on a motorcycle chain is equivalent to going cheap on a helmet. The consequences are too high to "play chicken" with.

Planning to go with the exact setup you mentioned, was already eyeballing those sprockets but just didn’t know much about them. Also, was settled on a chain with over 8000 tensile and best quality, I’m not skimping on one of the most important/overlooked items on the bike. There is a reason the pros run o ring high end chains. Hadn’t seen that DID ERVT chain because there are so many options, but that is exact what I’m looking for. Appreciate your knowledge and advice.

Also, are these TM design chain guide block reliable, it looks plastic and I worry about breaking it in a rut or tip over and leading to a bigger failure? (I have seen some mixed reviews on them somewhere before but don’t remember the exact context of the issue) Thanks

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12/29/2020 8:21 AM
Edited Date/Time: 12/29/2020 8:21 AM

I've had phenomenal luck with the TM Designworks hardware. The polymer they use is quite unique (think strong and ductile, not brittle). I started using them in Baja conditions where I was hitting rocks a lot. Worked great, protected the chain and sprocket perfectly. If you don't ride in those extreme conditions, it might be overkill, but I just kept running their stuff anyway. Also, the chain slider wears like iron (has built-in lube in the polymer), so it's another maintenance-lowering play for me.

Would you benefit in seeying my oldest TM Designworks parts on my most abused bike (2007 CRF450R)? I can snap pics later today if that helps.

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12/29/2020 8:30 AM

Rider 5280 wrote:

I've had phenomenal luck with the TM Designworks hardware. The polymer they use is quite unique (think strong and ductile, not brittle). I started using them in Baja conditions where I was hitting rocks a lot. Worked great, protected the chain and sprocket perfectly. If you don't ride in those extreme conditions, it might be overkill, but I just kept running their stuff anyway. Also, the chain slider wears like iron (has built-in lube in the polymer), so it's another maintenance-lowering play for me.

Would you benefit in seeying my oldest TM Designworks parts on my most abused bike (2007 CRF450R)? I can snap pics later today if that helps.

That makes sense, and if ya don’t mind I would definitely be interested to see it. Thanks sir!

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12/29/2020 10:37 AM
Edited Date/Time: 12/29/2020 11:02 AM

Here you go (about 191 hours on this part ... maybe more, can confirm later)

Note that the chain is a DID x-ring from about 13 years ago. Still going strong, but an older model. I like my old CRFs too much to sell when switching to Yamahas, so I got to see how long the parts really last. :-)

Photo

Photo

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12/29/2020 12:01 PM

Holding up well to say the least, thank you sir. Got that chain on order 👌

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12/29/2020 6:58 PM

Sunstar sprockets
DID ERT3 chain. High quality, light, and last the right amount of time
Rear chain guard.....I use TM Designworks. They are loud due to the plastic being so hard but last.
Chain buffer and roller......TM. Very clunky but must change for durability

I want my chain and sprockets to wear out In unison. When the standard aluminum sprocket is worn.....time for a new chain too. I get around 25-35 hours on a drive system and replace everything in a preventative manner.

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