You want to go faster but don’t want to buy another dirt bike. That’s why you need the best TTR230 mods to make it faster.
I’ll show you which ones are practical, which ones you need first, and why it’s important to upgrade multiple parts or systems on your bike to get the absolute best performance.
How much HP does a TTR230 have?
A stock Yamaha TTR230 has about 18 HP. With uncorking and re-jetting, you can get around 20 HP.
But peak horsepower rarely tells the whole story, and that’s especially true with the TTR 230. It’s a trail bike, so you’re probably going to be riding it in the low to mid-range RPM.
Increasing the low-end torque makes it easier to use the clutch because you don’t have to slip it as much. Having more power down low also allows you to ride a gear higher and still be able to accelerate. This means you won’t have to shift as much, it puts less wear on the engine, and you generally don’t get as much vibration.
How can I make my TTR230 faster?
There are many ways to make your TTR230 faster, it just depends on how much you want to spend. Some mods are cheap or free, while some upgrades cost several hundred dollars.
Below, I’ll go through the best ways to make it not only faster but more comfortable and safer.
Yamaha built the TTR230 to be as reliable as possible, and one of the ways they did that was by closing off the airbox as much as possible.
Removing the lid on top of the airbox allows more air to get in without the risk of too much dirt getting in. More air = more potential for power.
Re-jetting may be required for this modification alone, depending on what your current jetting is and how your bike runs.
Jetting for performance & reliability
Proper jet tuning can give you really good results, especially if your dirt bike is poorly jetted right now. It’s not going to give you a lot more horsepower; just everything else that’s more important.
Good jetting will make your TTR230:
- Start easier – hot or cold
- Run clean and smoother
- Resist stalling better
- Accelerate quicker
- More overall torque and horsepower
- Get better gas mileage
- Last longer – better engine reliability
Stock jetting is a 36 pilot jet and 125 main jet. If you un-cork your TTR230 with intake and/or exhaust mods, it will most likely run leaner, making it harder to start and run rougher.
While every bike is a little different, going to bigger (richer) jets will help if it doesn’t start easy or have good throttle response. Re-jetting to a 40 pilot jet and 130 main jet is a good starting point for making your TTR 230 run better.
Fork upgrade for safety & comfort
Before you get too far into your modifications, you need to address the suspension, especially if you’re a heavier rider.
The forks are soft and plush, which is great for beginners learning to ride. But, once you start riding faster and more aggressively on rougher trails, you’re going to start over-riding the stock suspension and bottoming it out.
Bottoming it out is not only dangerous because it can start bucking you off, but it can start doing damage. Whether it’s internal suspension damage or bending the frame if you’re jumping it with big impacts.
Going to heavy-duty fork springs is an easy way to make it stiffer. Adding a pre-load spacer is a cheap way to add pre-load.
You can also change the fork oil level/height, which reduces the air gap, making it compress slower and feel stiffer. Going to heavier weight fork oil will also make it slightly stiffer.
Otherwise, you can send the stock forks to a damper rod fork specialist, like Bruce Triplett, and he will make them perform much better for a reasonable price. Just tell him what you need and be realistic with your goals.
Can you modify the TTR230 shock?
The stock TTR230 shock is underwhelming, much like the forks. The rear shock is not adjustable, other than the pre-load for setting the ride height (which you should do if you want a good handling dirt bike!)
Unless you’re highly mechanically inclined, the only thing you can do is upgrade to a heavy-duty rear shock spring.
Uncorking the TTR230 – is it worth it?
The airbox mod was part of the “uncorking”, but the other part is to remove the stock exhaust baffle. You’ll get a lot more noise, and slightly more torque and throttle response.
I like quiet dirt bikes if noise is a concern where you ride, so it may not be the best mod for you to do. With that said, it does add a little bit of power – if you properly jet it!
Removing the muffler baffle/end cap will change the exhaust flow, causing it to run leaner.
So if it was properly jetting beforehand, it won’t run as well after removing it, even though it ‘sounds’ faster (louder)
Gearing for acceleration or top speed
Just want to accelerate quickly or have more top speed? The cheapest mod is changing one of the sprockets.
Changing the gearing (sprockets) doesn’t change the power of your TTR230, but it does change the final-drive gearing, which changes how quickly you can go through the gears.
For quicker acceleration, going down to a 12 tooth front/countershaft sprocket from the stock 13 tooth is only about $15-20.
For more top speed, simply go up to a 14 tooth front sprocket.
Either one of these sprocket changes will require you to adjust the chain and possibly require removing or adding a chain, depending on where it’s currently adjusted.
Exhaust mod for noise or power?
The stock exhaust is restrictive, even if you remove the baffle. Upgrading to a better exhaust can give you a little bit more overall torque and horsepower.
Unfortunately, the TTR230 is limited on aftermarket performance upgrades, so the only exhaust systems that are readily available are on Amazon.
Carb upgrade – give it some gas!
The stock carb works well for a beginner trail bike, but it’s definitely lacking if you want more power. Unfortunately, there aren’t many bolt-on carburetors that you can upgrade to.
Tokyomods has an option that they make a custom-fit adapter for your TTR230. I have not personally tested it, so I don’t know what kind of power characteristics it will have.
You can get a Chinese knock-carb from Amazon or ebay and it might fit, but there’s a higher risk that the jetting will need quite a bit of tuning. The performance gains might not be worth the cost, let alone the time and effort that most people usually put into swapping for a cheap carb upgrade.
Big bore kit – is it worth it?
One of the quickest and easiest ways to get more power out of your TTR230 is with a big bore kit – no replacement for displacement.
With that said, it’s getting harder to find a kit or even a big bore piston available. Yamaha TTR trail bikes just don’t have as big of an aftermarket selection as a Honda, like the CRF230F.
A bigger piston with higher compression will get you more torque and horsepower, especially if you have supporting mods, such as carb/jetting, airbox, and exhaust.
Camshaft – aren’t they for racing?
If you’re doing a big bore, you should really go for a hotter camshaft because the stock cam is weak and small. Web cams have 3 different options based on your needs.
A good torque cam will have more lift and less duration. This is good for trail riding. If you want the most horsepower, go for high lift and high duration. You may need upgraded valvetrain, so always go with what the camshaft supplier recommends, as well as their installation and break-in instructions.
Best TTR230 Mods List – Putting It All Together
If you’re doing one modification, there’s a good chance that you’ll have to modify or upgrade another part if you want to get the best results.
For example, if you go to a bigger carb, it’s going to potentially flow more air into the engine, but if you leave the stock exhaust on there, it’s not big/efficient enough to flow the extra exhaust out.
The point is, don’t upgrade one system and then expect huge power gains when you’re choking it with another system.
These are the best mods to make your TTR230 faster & more comfortable:
- Air box
- Big Bore
The TRUTH about modifying your TT230
Getting your dirt bike running well is the first step, and then it should be tuning the suspension for your weight and riding style, but there’s one mod that will go above and beyond any of the mods I listed in this article.
In fact, you can swap it out to any other bike you ride, guaranteed.
Yep, it’s as easy as swapping out the rider for a better one. No, I don’t mean you need to put Graham Jarvis on your TTR230, but rather modify YOUR own riding skills so that you will ride faster, more efficiently, and ultimately safer.
I want to show you how to do that with a free gift. It’s my basic technique guide to ride with confidence. Click here to download it.