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Discussion Starter #1
So I'm at a crossroads...I've put 1100+ miles on the bike and there are some things that I would like different about the bike.

Things I like..

Bike fits me well.
I can open it up and feel comfortable with it.
Super manueverable
When I look in my review mirror I've left some of my riding buddies in the turns...

Things I dislike...

pogo stick front end especially under hard braking...(does it have to dive all the way to the stops even under moderately hard braking) ::)

A little more power would be nice but I know I'm pissing up a tree....LOL
The fact that I can't use the helmet locks :mad:

If I were to mod it, the front and rear suspension be first (would like to raise the rear a little) , exhaust second, then I would find some way to make the a$$ end look better.

So should I mod it or should I suck it up for another 5-6 months and get the 650R?
 

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Stiffening up the front suspension is dead simple (<2 hrs) and reversible - and only costs about $110 (springs + oil) if you want to retain the ability to go back to stock. If that's enough to make the bike more fun for 5-6 months, it seems like a good use of money.

Don't touch the exhaust - a quiet bike is a happy bike.

A short bike cable from one helmet lock to the other, and you can use the locks.
 
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I wont let the fact that I think the 650r is not the greatest looking bike bias my opinion... ::)

I could have easily went out and bought a new bike, but the poor little ninja was a diamond in the ruff just looking for a little attention ;)

ydant said:
Don't touch the exhaust - a quiet bike is a happy bike.
There is a reason the ex500 gets picked on, its clutch pull, suspension and seat height were set up for small women and children. Along with the fact that its two ugly ass excuses for an exhaust are drowned out by most mopeds....
 

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Shopshirt Mofo said:
pogo stick front end especially under hard braking...(does it have to dive all the way to the stops even under moderately hard braking) ::)
As said above, you can get the aftermarket springs to fix the front end and it'll be perfectly reversible (but doubtful that you'd ever have a reason to undo it). I went the cheap route. I cut the springs (5" off), added PVC spacers (3" long 3/4" SCH80PVC) with a washer between the spring and the spacer, and I'm golden. I'm a rather large guy, though, so you'd likely cut off less spring and add a shorter spacer depending on your weight. You can't just undo this since you cut the springs, but I don't know why anyone would go back to stock.

Shopshirt Mofo said:
A little more power would be nice but I know I'm pissing up a tree....LOL
Yes and no. You can't add power easily, per se, but you could swap sprockets for more low end and be pretty happy. 15/42 sprockets gives a nice low end grunt and plenty of top speed for the freeways (IMO - I have no desire to do triple digits often, don't even know my bike's top speed).

Shopshirt Mofo said:
The fact that I can't use the helmet locks :mad:
You can get the extenders, use a 12mm open/box end wrench, or even get the bar end helmet locks. I just carry my helmet.

Shopshirt Mofo said:
If I were to mod it, the front and rear suspension be first (would like to raise the rear a little) , exhaust second, then I would find some way to make the a$$ end look better.
Doing my front end got rid of virtually all of my sag up front, and added so much static height that the rear didn't need to be raised. If you're doing it for looks then you'll still have to raise it, but if it's for the way it sits then maybe not. If I add dog bones now after doing the front then my center stand won't touch :p.

Shopshirt Mofo said:
So should I mod it or should I suck it up for another 5-6 months and get the 650R?
That's your call. How bad you'd love to just get a 650 is going to skew how much you dislike the bad parts of your current bike. A 650 would be freaking sweet, but the extra cash wouldn't be as sweet to me.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
That's your call. How bad you'd love to just get a 650 is going to skew how much you dislike the bad parts of your current bike. A 650 would be freaking sweet, but the extra cash wouldn't be as sweet to me.
[/quote]

Agreed, I do like the way they look though. I'll probably wait until the 650R starts hitting the used market in larger numbers.
 

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Shopshirt Mofo said:
The fact that I can't use the helmet locks :mad:
Think about it. Mr. Kawasaki will never put a helment lock that isn't usable. Yes, you can use the stock helmet lock without any modification and/or extenders or cables (there is a trick that my friend showed me.) It might even take you 15 or 20 minutes (if you're patient) but you can also figure it out (trial and error.) Think of it like Rubik's cube.

Anyways, I've read of many riders having issues with the EX500 helment lock (so i'm thinking of writing a PDF instruction along with picture.) Or a video on youtube might do it. I wouldn't mind contributing to this forum (the information warehouse of the Ninja 500.)
 

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nasfaw said:
Shopshirt Mofo said:
The fact that I can't use the helmet locks :mad:
Think about it. Mr. Kawasaki will never put a helment lock that isn't usable. Yes, you can use the stock helmet lock without any modification and/or extenders or cables (there is a trick that my friend showed me.) It might even take you 15 or 20 minutes (if you're patient) but you can also figure it out (trial and error.) Think of it like Rubik's cube.

Anyways, I've read of many riders having issues with the EX500 helment lock (so i'm thinking of writing a PDF instruction along with picture.) Or a video on youtube might do it. I wouldn't mind contributing to this forum (the information warehouse of the Ninja 500.)
i can get the driverside lock to work (06 model) but not the other side
although i havent tried the passenger side much either
 

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nasfaw said:
Anyways, I've read of many riders having issues with the EX500 helment lock (so i'm thinking of writing a PDF instruction along with picture.) Or a video on youtube might do it. I wouldn't mind contributing to this forum (the information warehouse of the Ninja 500.)
Do it :)

You are the first one that I remember who can use those.. It would be beneficial for many ;)

I'm voting for the vid tutorial (works better). A pdf also prints well for those who don't have a computer in their garage.

You are using the footpegs right ?
 

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nasfaw said:
Think about it. Mr. Kawasaki will never put a helment lock that isn't usable. Yes, you can use the stock helmet lock without any modification and/or extenders or cables (there is a trick that my friend showed me.) It might even take you 15 or 20 minutes (if you're patient) but you can also figure it out (trial and error.) Think of it like Rubik's cube.

Anyways, I've read of many riders having issues with the EX500 helment lock (so i'm thinking of writing a PDF instruction along with picture.) Or a video on youtube might do it. I wouldn't mind contributing to this forum (the information warehouse of the Ninja 500.)
Please post your trick. I'm able to use the left-side lock, but just barely and it's a pain. I'd love to benefit from your experience. :)
 
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