EX500 - Azure's Silly Motorcycle Adventures - Ex-500.com - The home of the Kawasaki EX500 / Ninja 500R
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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-12-2019, 2:41 PM Thread Starter
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EX500 - Scrambler/Cafe Project

Hello,


I am new to the forums. I recently found myself in the ownership of a 1991 EX500 with 31km that I bought for about 400$. As someone with almost zero motorcycling knowledge nor technical expertise I've decided to take the extremely wise, trouble-free and rewarding choice to transform the rather uninspiring looks of my motorcycle while trying not to anger the engineering gods that created it, and their followers too much.


This will be a thread to track progress, ask questions and share my thoughts as a newbie dabbles in misery and suffering brought about an addictive drive to take things apart and trying to understand them, and hopefully reassemble in something that looks half aesthetically pleasing.



Here's the Bike with some aftermarket mufflers and fairings already off!
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Last edited by AzureVox; 12-25-2019 at 8:19 PM.
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-12-2019, 5:01 PM
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Nice find for $400! Paid $300 for mine but I was rolling the dice, it was an utter basket case. I'd snatch 'em up for $400 all day long if they were as clean to begin with as yours. Happy modding!

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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-12-2019, 5:13 PM Thread Starter
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Nice find for $400! Paid $300 for mine but I was rolling the dice, it was an utter basket case. I'd snatch 'em up for $400 all day long if they were as clean to begin with as yours. Happy modding!

Thank you! The engine seems to be running well and smoothly, I believe everything is stock besides the mufflers! I'll be deep cleaning and drawing some doodles in the following days to figure out what I'd like it to look like!
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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-16-2019, 12:56 PM Thread Starter
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Hello,

Here's some more pictures of the progress. I've been mostly de-rusting the exhaust pipes, frame and trying out how to paint to get some practise. I've decided to leave any further painting out of the picture till I can figure out what to do for the subframe. I feel the backside of this motorcycle is way too long.


Also, I plan on going to the salvage yard and trying to find a round headlight.
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-16-2019, 1:02 PM Thread Starter
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(Last post was from a couple days ago, here some more progress)


Found an KZ440 in the salvage yard, decided to buy the headlight for 20€. I regret this decision, so I've ordered some Scrambler style yellow headlights with a cover that should be coming soon. But, to keep things organized here is the bike when I installed them. As you can see I also cut the subframe and the stock seat, which I too regretted, and ordered a new seat.
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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-16-2019, 1:08 PM Thread Starter
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(And here's the changes for today)


So, today I received the new seat and I decided to install it. Pretty new to welding but it seems to hold on pretty well with me seated on it. Regardless, tomorrow a friend who happens to be a professional welder will be coming by to help me build a stronger subframe!

Here's the bike as of today, Rally headlight and clip on handlebars should be coming tomorrow. I'll keep this updated.
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-17-2019, 12:02 AM
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Somehow I missed seeing this thread. You're really going at it! Thanks for posting this, looking forward to seeing the progress.
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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-17-2019, 2:03 PM Thread Starter
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Hey guys, I couldn't take pictures today I'll be posting them tomorrow. But, I've run into a little blockade. The plunger choke of my left side carburator broke, I could buy a kit and fix it (I imagine this is doable with a pair of pliers) but the price seems to be around 30 to 50€ which I am pretty sure I could manage to find some Mikumi VMs off a Honda CB around the area if I bothered looking and haggling. The reason I am considering this is that it'd allow me (as far as I understand) to remove the stock airbox and get air pods without fucking the engine performance since I won't need the constant velocity made by the bulgy airbox. Which would also allow me to make a tighter job on the subframe.


My question is. Can you just buy Mikuni VMs, some air pods and get an EX500 running without much hassle?
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-17-2019, 2:04 PM Thread Starter
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Somehow I missed seeing this thread. You're really going at it! Thanks for posting this, looking forward to seeing the progress.
Thanks friend, I'll keep you updated!
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-18-2019, 12:28 AM
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My question is. Can you just buy Mikuni VMs, some air pods and get an EX500 running without much hassle?
I am not 100% sure but I thought I read a thread here recently where someone did just this. I cannot for the life of me remember who started the thread or anything. I just remember that the individual used some Mikuni flat slides and ran the standard stuff but re-jetted to a slightly smaller pilot jet....maybe? If I find the thread I'll post you a link here........sean


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My garage: 2000.5 Aprilia Mille R, 2000 Ducati 996, 1994 EX500 basket case, 1993 Ducati 900 SS, 2004 Suzuki GSXR600, 1992 GSXR750 oil boiler, 1983 Suzuki XN-85 Turbo
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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-18-2019, 5:18 PM Thread Starter
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I am not 100% sure but I thought I read a thread here recently where someone did just this. I cannot for the life of me remember who started the thread or anything. I just remember that the individual used some Mikuni flat slides and ran the standard stuff but re-jetted to a slightly smaller pilot jet....maybe? If I find the thread I'll post you a link here........sean

Yeah I swear I've read that aswell. I've been thinking about more on the topic, I live in Europe and I am novice rider. Meaning, bikes gotta be limited to 47hp which I believe the EX500 surpasses. So, considering I've read here that getting pods for the stock carbs gives you a 10hp loss, I might just do that until I get my full license then invest in new carbs & pods.

Not sure if this is a really stupid idea, I'll wait on some thoughts back from you guys.
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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-18-2019, 5:30 PM Thread Starter
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Here's two pictures of the bike with the new headlight and handlebars, priming the tank and waiting for my friend to come (Hopefully tomorrow) So we can do an actual proper job on the subframe.



I like the new headlight and handlebar look, I think shorter mufflers, shock gaiters and an aluminium can to replace the coolant plastic bottle would improve the overall looks further. These will be coming next, but the next update might take a bit till I've got the money to buy it!
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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-25-2019, 6:52 PM Thread Starter
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Hello Guys!

I decided to leave changing the carbs due to some EU regulations that'd make me have to spend 350€ on engineers giving me the proper papers to make it legal. I am keeping the stock airbox aswell, I found a choke plunger on a salvage yard and fixed the choke issue.

Also, finally made a proper sturdy weld that makes the seat feel nice and secure. Awaiting on shorter, stubby mufflers and considering buying some aluminium sheets to cut up some fairings that cover up under the subframe sides coming from the tank. I feel it might complete the look a bit more and look kinda sweet with some decoration-only rivets.


Any advice or ideas welcomed!
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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-25-2019, 11:16 PM
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Hello Guys!

I decided to leave changing the carbs due to some EU regulations that'd make me have to spend 350€ on engineers giving me the proper papers to make it legal. I am keeping the stock airbox aswell, I found a choke plunger on a salvage yard and fixed the choke issue.

Also, finally made a proper sturdy weld that makes the seat feel nice and secure. Awaiting on shorter, stubby mufflers and considering buying some aluminium sheets to cut up some fairings that cover up under the subframe sides coming from the tank. I feel it might complete the look a bit more and look kinda sweet with some decoration-only rivets.


Any advice or ideas welcomed!
HAHA. yes EU regulations you have to watch those be careful not to over do the mods or you won't be able to get it through a vehicle test if it deviates too far from original spec or you run into the type approval regulations and have to have the engineers report anyway. [been there] you can clean up the look a bit by fitting COPS and deleting the coils also helps the water ingress on the coils when you remove the fairings that cover them. try and get all the other electrical stuff inside the frame and out of the rain for the same reason. on the carb front you can get restrictor washers to drop the HP down to learner levels not very dear and work well without re jetting.
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Kawasaki-...MAAOSwDk5UE0Yk

as for sliders yeah I had a set of those on one of the GPZ's worked very well but the increased air intake noise is annoying after an hour in the saddle when your accelerating a lot. airbox is much quieter and better on the eardrums also there is no base line to work from for 500 so it a PITA getting the right set up with needles and jets trying to make it run smooth is one thing then fuel economy suffers drop the jets and running issues appear. best leave the CVK's on for ease of use.

edit, one other point if you intend to go off road at some point fit some gaiters to those stock forks mud and grit play havoc with those single fork oil seals because the stock dust covers are not good enough to keep it out.

Last edited by yorkie; 12-25-2019 at 11:29 PM.
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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-26-2019, 1:00 AM Thread Starter
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[QUOTE=edit, one other point if you intend to go off road at some point fit some gaiters to those stock forks mud and grit play havoc with those single fork oil seals because the stock dust covers are not good enough to keep it out.[/QUOTE]


Indeed, damn these EU regulations. I'll have to fork out 300€ to get the subframe legal, no happy about that but I'll deal with it. I agree with you on hiding the coils, I'll be doing this tomorrow alongside installing some shock gaiters I found on the salvage yard plus also thinking about cutting up some aluminium sheets to make some bolt on side fairings.

I made a quick paint silhouette of it, I think it might look Okay and help protect the electronics better since I do actually live in the countryside and off road is a given fairly often!
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