How I Plan To Get 50,000 Miles From My 2006 Yamaha R6

tjUsing certain techniques can greatly increase the longevity and decrease the repair costs of your Yamaha R6. Here are a few of the methods I use to keep my baby in tip top order. I’ve included links to other articles that relate.

The first order of maintaining your motorcycle is not to crash. Ride within your abilities and the constraints of your surroundings.

DrivetrainSuper Bike

Since the Yamaha R6 is quite powerful one of the most vulnerable parts to strain is the drive train. This includes the transmission which is a wet clutch lubricated with the engine oil. Simply put, the less stress subject your drive train to the less wear it will have.

This is not to say you shouldn’t drive your Yamaha R6 the way it was meant to be ridden. You don’t have to baby it. The idea is to be as smooth as possible. Examples of NOT being smooth as possible would be:

  • Popping the clutch – Wears out faster and slams metal on metal
  • Popping on and off the throttle – Besides the traction issues this also torques
  • Uncoordinated and rough shifting (solve this with preload shifting)

The other obvious method to reducing wear on the chain and sprocket is to lubricate every 500 miles with an lubricant designed for sportbikes such as Maxima Chain Wax.

Suspension

The more harsh bumps you hit the faster your suspension is going to wear out. That includes speed bumps, pot holes, wheelies, and constant hard braking.

Paint

Even though the appearance doesn’t impact the overall lifespan of the bike it’s not a bad idea to keep it clean. It will help the bike retain value and obviously look great. Washing and waxing the bike after rides in the rain to keep the dirt off will prevent scratching. Keeping finger prints and bug guts off will also prevent the acid from compromising your clear coat, which is your paint’s last line of defense.

Engine

I consider the engine, surprisingly, to be one of the most solid pieces on the bike. Obviously incorrect maintenance or constant harsh usage will take its toll but overall these engines are very reliable. Here are the steps to take for ensuring constant operation.

  • Change the oil when appropriate. The longer you go without an oil change, the amount of wear/damage will increase, exponentially. Synthetic motorcycle oil is preferable on bikes that have gone through the break in process. Depending on how often you redline your bike you should be changing your oil with a high quality motorcycle oil. I am not going to go into detail on that here as there is plenty of information already.
  • Check your oil level and cleanliness often. Here is a guide for doing that.
  • Change the spark plugs at 9,000 miles and every 9,000 miles after that.
  • Valve adjustment at ~24,000 miles.
  • Adjust timing chain when the mechanical noise increases. This will present in the form of a low rattling sound at low RPMs.

Modifications

Modifications can, somewhat ironically, also decrease the lifespan of your R6. This is not a hard and fast rule though. Engine modifications are the greatest source of unnecessary wear. A super sported engine will hardly last over 6,000 miles which is why you never see a (fast) track bike with a lot of miles on it.

Every change you make to your bike increases the possibility of something not working as designed. Aftermarket lights can blow fuses or fry computers, exhausts can ruin the fuel mapping, aftermarket fuel mapping can be incorrectly done and cause excessive wear, different sized sprockets put different, unplanned, loads of torque on the transmission, and the list could go on.

I find engine and exhaust mods particularly useless. A few more HP doesn’t make me a faster rider and significantly increases the risk of something breaking. Not to mention I am still limited by my skill which I do not deem superior than the bike. Most riders can’t ride their bike to its limit so why bother making it faster?

I’m not saying don’t modify your bike. What I am saying is if you want the maximum use out of your bike it is wise to leave it as stock as possible.

How do you ensure your bike stays in tip top condition?

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