the ultimate collection of ultimate bikes








  The YZ used roller bearings at the steering head and the works bike used tapered Timken bearings. Where the frame tubes met the steering head on the OW, is the weak link in the works frame. There wasn't enough gusseting and the frame often broke in this area. The lower triple clamp on the YZ is cast aluminum and the OW uses a billet aluminum one that was available in several offsets. The steering stem on the OW is titanium vs. steel for the YZ. The fork tubes are machined down between the top and bottom triple clamp on both bikes. The bolts are dished out steel on the YZ and dished out titanium on the OW.  Note the different ways the shocks are mounted.



  The front wheels are nearly identical with the exception of the works bike having a sand cast magnesium hub. The wheel bearing spacer on the works bike is machined from titanium vs steel for the YZ.



  The front end provides one of the biggest differences between the two bikes. The YZ uses 35mm tubes and provide just over seven inches of travel. The works forks are hand made by Kayaba and use very thick 36mm tubing, they provide over eight inches of travel. They are also knurled where they meet the lower triple clamp. They are very stout and solid compared to the YZ forks. With the YZ's, after several races you would have to rotate the chrome tubes 180 degrees because they would bend slightly from the jumps and the new found speed on the rough straights. The lower sliders on the YZ are cast aluminum and hand machined on the OW. The damping rods and springs are also much different. The performance difference between the two bikes is really noticeable. With the combination of the Timken steering head bearings and the beefier front forks, the works bikes front end feels much more positive. The difference is amazing!



   Every single part on the OW has received utmost attention to detail in regard to function and weight. Cost was no object. Titanium was used everywhere possible. This would have been cost prohibitive on the production bike, even though, the YZ received more attention than the production MX model. Check out the rear tire on the YZ, a full wrap-around 4.60x18 Dunlop. This was actually a very good tire.




  The air box on both bikes uses the same basic design, using a separate filter on each side. They are both made from hand laid fiber glass. The works one is much thinner than the YZ model and uses aluminum covers vs stamped steel on the YZ. They will not interchange. Note the coil location on the YZ. The OW's coil is in front of the shock behind the steering stem.




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