Yamaha FZ1 with larger rear sprocket

At the 30,000 mile service the chain needed to be replaced. To my knowledge it had never been replaced.

The stock FZ1 is geared quite high which makes it very subdued even when doing 80 MPH on the highway. This behavior is great for MPG and long highway trips but is not very engaging for backroad riding.

That being said, when it came time to replace the chain I opted to replace the rear sprocket with one size larger (48T) than stock (45T). From the reading and gear ratio calculating I had done I was hoping this would be a nice compromise between relaxed highway cruising and the high stung impotence of the two sizes smaller (15T) than stock front sprocket (17T) that I tried a while ago. I was still a bit nervous though. If I didn’t like it it would be a fair amount of money down the drain and/or many mile later until I felt ok changing it again.

It’s been nearly 1500 miles now and I can honestly say that it is significantly better the huge majority of the time. On slower corners 2nd gear is smooth yet powerful, and on the highway 6th gear is also smooth but more wanting to pull away as it sits right at the bottom of the power band when cruising on the highway. In many ways it feels like I went down a gear. The new 6th feels a lot like the original 5th. It also still has some punch at around 7000 RPM whereas the 15T front sprocket took that away.

In conclusion: I would say unless you only want to ride casually on the highway, this simple modification is well worth looking into. It has made my gentleman’s sportbike much more fun to ride on the street.


48 tooth rear sprocket on a 2006 Yamaha FZ1

12 thoughts on “Yamaha FZ1 with larger rear sprocket

  1. Jeremy, thank you for sharing that inmormation. I have completly stock configuration, and i would like to do the same thing with my rear sprocket. Do i need to change chain to match new sprockets step? I know, that its recomended to change whole set completly, but mine stock is quite perfect.

  2. I did not change my chain at the same time. If you are just going up or down a couple of teeth you should be able to use the same chain. It is possible to significantly change the sprockets enough to require a shorter or longer chain.

    Replacing the chain is always a good idea, but often not necessary. Since my use is mostly commuting, I was not placing a lot of strain on the chain so I didn’t feel a need to upgrade it.

  3. I got larger sprockets for my Fz1 and it sucks.the bike feels very laborious,the speedometer has to be recalibrated,and the MPG is noticeably worse.all this for just a little bit of extra power.not worth it.

  4. I have 2007 FZ-1 and my stock sprockets are 17T and 45T. To be honest In stock config I am in 6th gear around town with no need to shift down. I went to 17T and 42T in rear and the bike can utilize the gear box much better. By the way GSXR 1000 and R1 Share the same size 530 sprockets and same 130mm mounting pattern. I bought a 42T on ebay from 2009 GSXR1000 and it works great. Highway is much better and fuel economy way up. You can actually shift down on highway without ripping the front up.

    If you go up to 48T in back it will rip the front up out of turns 🙂 but get ready for 7500 rpm at highway speeds. Its all in what you like but keep that 45T around just in case. If you guys are on track disregard my comment.

    Adam W

  5. 48 / 15 is 3.20 gearing, 48/17 is 2.82 , and 45/15 is 3.00, so the rear change to 48, from stock is 2.82. He said the front change to 15 from stock was “high stung impitance” (misspelled words says alot about the review). the 45-15 setup would be less buzzy over the 48-17 setup, so his review is jibber jabber bullshit

  6. front sprockets are $25, rear sprockets are $70 at the most, which is not a lot of money at all

  7. Hi Steve, thank you for the spelling corrections. I’m sorry that my experience and opinion on FZ1 gearing offends you so. Also, at the time I was a student and therefore didn’t have a lot of expendable income. Thanks for reading and be sure to check out my new publication chasingthetwist.kinja.com .

  8. Jeremy,
    I got to tell you guys. I really like the two teeth down on the rear sprockets its been a while now. It runs like an R1 and lowers your RPM on the highway. I am at 4000RPM at 70 and plenty of pull or just shift down.

    Here is my over all on it. The handle bars dont shake as much at lower RPM range turns into more enjoyable ride for the wrists. At stock i seemed to be in the high vibraiton area of the engine on the highway. This lowered the RPM just enought to get out of that. Less shifting around town and nice matched RPM pulls from each gear. Overall an A+

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