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Discussion Starter #1
In 2014 I noticed an EX500 sitting next to the garage at my daughter's boyfriends house. Outside, in the weather and deep snow, in Michigan, where I later found it had sat for "4-5 years". I had to buy it, as I hate seeing things abused, and love a good deal, so I tracked down the owner (now an extended family member) and finally bought it for $400. He had parked it after a minor low-side prior to that. Its a complete 2005 with 3800 miles and no history whatsoever, but after changing fluids and putting my KLR battery in it, it started and ran! Fortunately the PO had left the key in it, so I had that to my advantage, but he never found the title back.
Back then I bought a bunch of parts for it, and never did much with it, outside of building a bike table this past winter.

Fast forward to our current pandemic, and the fact that I am changing the alternator on my ST1100 (not a fun project) as well as working on my KLR, so I decided to see what it would take to get the EX on the road. Got new tires mounted, fixed the broken turn signals and got it running (on the choke) again. Not bad for sitting for 5 years, so decided I'd better drain the tank and add some SeaFoam (as I do not relish pulling the carbs just yet), and got into the airbox. As did some mice apparently, found a huge ball of mouse nest that had been there for who knows now long, but might help explain why it won't rev very well eh? Dumb of me to not do that first. I took pics and will try to add here.

So currently the bike is apart awaiting new plugs, air filter, fresh gas, wheels painted, possibly wheel bearings (as it sat out) and later on the chain and sprockets I purchased a while back. Oh, also some Fog Bones that I am ordering today, and then caliper rebuild kits and a few other things over the coming winter. These things start so simple, but it is a fairly easy bike to work on and I have the manuals too, as well as advice from this forum.

The Forum is very much appreciated, thanks for your advice!

Jim
51529
Ninja 500 washed Sept 2014 (17).JPG
 

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It looks pretty great for a bike that sat outside for years int he Midwest! I too picked up a similar bike with a similar story, and whilst my paintwork is decent, the mufflers were rusted to heck. Fast forward, the bike runs like a champ and my son was planning to learn to ride on the street before COVID-19 put paid to that....
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I was amazed the brakes were not frozen and engine even turned over, but they swear it was outside that long. The last plate on it said 2007 too, so that attests to it. Below EX500 May 2020 (5).JPG is as she sits now, though minus tank. I think that is the extent of this seasons disassembly, but I could be wrong. Not bled brakes yet nor gotten it running well.
 

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I like your DIY bike bench. Assuming you push the bike up a ramp to get it on the stand?

I have resisted such a sand, either DIY or commercial, but my back gives me grief these days if I bend over for long stretches of time....welcome to getting old. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I agree on the "getting old" part..... my back starts killing me after a while too! I built the stand a year ago, but found the bike nearly impossible to get up there with a standard aluminum motorcycle ramp for loading, in spite of all the nice tall ones I had seen when Googling. The angle was too steep too, in addition to the effort. It seems like it was about 24" tall, but I forget now. So, I took it apart (use construction screws.. I always do!) and lowered it several inches so that the 2x6's sat on top of each other, with the underlying 4x4 structure no longer visible. I still had a little struggle loading it, but it does work now. I think a shallower ramp may be the ultimate solution, but I do like it. Oh, I used 4 steel locking casters (eBay I think) underneath, and that is great... move the bike out of the way, or to one side or the other if you need to access certain areas. My goal was to be able to roll it outside, but not done that yet, too many parts of my ST1100 in the way currently. If you need more specifics I can send specs or pics on it too. The wheel chock came from Harbor Fright and may not be needed. I use strong nylon straps to hold it down, and glad I added that, as once I pulled the front wheel it was a bit less stable. This is my first time using it, so its been a learning experience. The fork now rests on a stack of wood, so the straps make me feel much more secure. Once I get the front wheel back in, it should be more stable. If the bike did not have a center stand, as your VFR likely does not, I have a Pit Bull rear stand that I use on my KLR, but that might be a bit tricky on the table. We shall see...
 
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