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I have spent a lot of time testing on the standard 2022 MX machines and Factory Editions you see below. I went back and forth on several bikes to see which gearing would be good for the average rider. We did our evaluations on tight clay based tracks to flowing sandier based type desert courses. Since the word “gearing” is still in the subject line in a lot of my emails, I thought I would condense some of the best gearing specs I have come up with for the 2022 MX test machines so far. A couple of these gearing specs have evolved since last year so don’t expect some of these to be the same from 2021. I DO NOT however just change the gearing for the sake of changing the gearing, like some other media testing outlets. However, if a certain bike does need an engine character change or maybe the transmission spacing needs help, we will try different gearing. These gearing specs are for stock engines or with aftermarket mufflers ( a couple have a spec for an aftermarket ECU). If you have engine work done to your bike, chances are you could change gearing on a few of these machines. I also attached a couple links to some ECU maps (to a few bikes) that I preferred, to compliment the recommended gearing specs. As usual if you have any questions I am here to help you. Email email@example.com and I will be happy to assist you as best as I can.
YZ250F: Stock 13/50 Recommended 13/50 Recommended ECU Setting: (Keefer Free Feeling Map)
YZ450F: Stock 13/49 Recommended or 14/53 ECU: (TP 3.0 or 5.0) The 14/53 gearing will help the chassis settle more on acceleration as well as help calm the bike on de-cel. This also keeps third gear usable in almost all track condition. 14/53 gearing will also help the on/off feel through corners.
KX250: Stock/Recommended 13/50 ECU: (Keefer Map) You can view the KX 250 map here: https://www.keeferinctesting.com/motocross-testing/2020/11/29/top-5-mods-to-the-2021-kawasaki-kx250
KX450: Stock 13/50 Recommended 13/51 ECU: (Keefer Map) You can view the KX450 map here: https://www.keeferinctesting.com/motocross-testing/2019/8/25/2020-kawasaki-kx450-reviewbaseline-settings.
Going to a 13/51, instead of the stock 13/50 gearing, helps the rider get into third gear quicker coming out of corners. The stock 13/50 will not pull third gear in corners without using a lot of clutch on either machine.
I used 2021 specs as I have not ridden the 2022 yellow bikes, but they are unchanged for 2022 so let’s roll with the 21 spec.
2021 RM-Z250: Stock/Recommended 13/50 White coupler (Stock)
2021 RM-Z450: Stock 13/50 Recommended 13/51 White coupler (Helps pulling power down low on deep tracks).
CRF250R: Stock 13/50 Recommended: 13/51 (Helps rider get into third gear earlier and gives more pulling power without sacrificing too much second gear roll on). The stock 13/50 is decent for faster tracks since the transmission spacing is much better on the 2022, but the 13/51 will allow you to just run third gear in corners similar to the YZ250F.)
CRF450R: Stock 13/49 Recommended: 13/49 Unlike the 2020 Honda CRF450R, the new hydraulic clutch is a tight fit for a 14T countershaft and I just don’t trust it because it is too damn close to the slave cylinder. I have ran it for a while and although it clears, I have come to the conclusion it’s way too close for comfort. You can try this at your own risk if you feel like you need a litle more rear wheel connection under throttle. 14/52 will calm the rear of the machine down a lot on acceleration.
This set up on all three standard KTMs will help settle the rear end out of corners/square edge/braking bumps. It will also help 2nd-3rd gear recovery as well as transition between each gear. The FE models have different gearing than the standard 22s and we have settled on going up a tooth on the rear a this will help with third gear being more response coming out of corners. The new FEs still need some added low end RPM response.
250 SX-F: Stock 14/51 Recommended 14/52
350 SX-F: Stock 14/51 Recommended 14/53
450 SX-F: Stock 13/49 Recommended 14/52
450 Factory Edition: 13/51 Recommended 13/52
250 Factory Edition: 13/51 Recommended 13/52
This set up on all three bikes will help settle the rear end out of corners and help with 2nd-3rd gear transition exiting corners.
FC 250: Stock 14/51 Recommended 14/52
FC350: Stock 14/51 Recommended 14/52
FC450: Stock 13/49 Recommended 14/52
This set up on both bikes will help settle the rear end out of corners and help with 2nd-3rd gear transition exiting corners.
MC 250: Stock 14/51 Recommended 14/52
MC 450: Stock 13/49 Recommended 14/52